, Volume 33, Issue 1-2, pp 77-89

The impact of gender role conflict and counseling technique on psychological help seeking in men

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Abstract

We hypothesized that men's gender role conflict would predict attitudes towards psychological help-seeking after viewing counseling that focused on either client feelings or client cognitions. The sample was made up of 164 male undergraduates: 115 White, 13 African-American, 13 Hispanic, 18 Asian, 2 Portuguese, and 3 of unspecified ethnicity. Participants completed the Gender Role Conflict Scale (GRCS), viewed a videotape of a 10-minute counseling session that used interventions that were either emotion-focused or cognition-focused, and completed a measure of their attitudes towards seeking psychological help. Results indicated that men scoring high on gender role conflict who viewed the session that focused on feelings were least likely to indicate a willingness to seek psychological help compared to men in each of the three other conditions. We discuss implications for counseling interventions for men who adopt the traditional male gender role.

A version of this paper was presented at the 101st Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association, Toronto, Canada. We would like to thank Bob Cournoyer and Piet Lammert for portraying the counselor and client in the study.