246752 Impact of gender role socialization on mental health

Monday, October 31, 2011

K. Bryant Smalley, PhD, PsyD , Rural Health Research Institute, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA
Jacob Coleman Warren, PhD , Rural Health Research Institute, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA
The impact that gender role socialization can have upon psychological functioning is wide-reaching but poorly investigated. The current study examined the impact that traditional gender role ideology and gender role stress have on anxiety, depression, alcohol use, and substance use among college men and women. Four hundred and ninety one participants (60% female) were recruited from the undergraduate body at a University in the Southeast using convenience sampling techniques. Each participant completed a battery assessing demographics, gender ideology, gender role stress, depression, anxiety, alcohol use, and substance use. Multivariate logistic regressions were conducted within each sex, controlling for demographic factors. For women, gender role stress was predictive of anxiety (OR = 1.8, p = 0.02) and gender role ideology was protective against drug use (OR = 0.6, p = 0.04). For men, gender role stress was predictive of depression and anxiety (OR = 4.2, p = 0.02; OR = 2.3, p = 0.03), and gender role ideology was predictive of alcohol abuse (OR = 3.2, p = 0.003). The varying relationships that emerged indicate that gender role socialization plays a complex role in anxiety, depression, alcohol use and substance use that merits further examination in community-based samples.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the impact of gender role socialization upon anxiety, depression, and substance use

Keywords: Gender, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a licensed clinical psychologist who has published numerous articles on the psychology of gender, including articles focusing on gender's impact on health and health behaviors
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.