Though the stigma is lessening, men are still far more likely than women to let their depression go untreated. Blame it on Rambo, Brando, or the lure of the martini, but many guys still aren’t getting the help they need. As the traditionally stressful, dark days of winter set in, here are some signs that the guy you love might be suffering from more than a loss in fantasy football …
1. Substance Use: Has he been drinking more beer than a pledging freshman? Has his usual dinner cocktail spawned into three? Often, an increase in substance use-and this includes cigarettes, recreational drugs, and caffeine-can be a desperate attempt to self-medicate or cover up unpleasant feelings that are gnawing at him.
2. Unhealthy Eating: We all have our baked chicken days and our nachos-by-the-truckload days; such is the fluctuation of normal eating. But if you see an increasing pattern of junk food bingeing, overeating, skipping meals or loss of appetite, these disruptions-and the weight changes that go with them— can be telltale signs of stress and depression.
3. Sleeping Changes: While some depressed people want nothing more than to snooze the day away, others lie awake at all hours. A change in sleeping habits, in either direction, can sometimes be a warning that a storm is brewing.
4. Irritability: Perhaps he’s taking that cocky waiter a little too personally, or he’s road-raging like a raging bull. Though many people associate anger and irritability with anything but depression, there is real evidence that edginess and grouchiness-especially among men-can signal sadness beneath.
What are the other four tell-tale signs of a depressed mate? Click here to find out.