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Depression in women: Gender-related socialization

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The hypothesis that gender-related socialization processes underlie the raised levels of depression in women is explored by researching presumed causes of depression and showing that these are more common amongst women.

These factors include;

Childhood sex abuse

Adult abuse

Socialization to lower sense of mastery

Socialization to lower self esteem

Socialization to greater dependence

Socialization towards greater passivity/lower assertiveness

Socialization towards greater role stress


There is some evidence that part of the gender difference is artifactual. For example there is evidence that women seek help earlier than men and are more ready to identify that they are depressed.

Socialization towards early help seeking

while conversely there is evidence that men are more likely to resist seeking help and do not readily admit to being depressed.

Men are more reluctant to seek help



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