پس از مرگ یک دوست، سوگ مردان جوان و هویت های مردانه
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|37459||2013||9 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||7944 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Social Science & Medicine, Volume 84, May 2013, Pages 35–43
Abstract Young men can have an uncomfortable relationship with grief. Socially constructed masculine ideals dictate that men be stoic in the aftermath of loss, most often expressing their sadness and despair as anger. Perhaps because of alignment to such masculine ideals little research has been done to explore young men's grief – and chronicle the ways they think about loss, their responses and how they go about describing their identities after a tragic event. Using qualitative individual interviews and photo elicitation methods, we investigated the ways in which 25 men aged 19–25 grieved the accidental death of a male friend. The study was conducted from April 2010–December 2011. Causes of death were diverse, and included motor vehicle accidents, adventure sports, drug overdose and fights. The findings revealed men's predominant grief responses as emptiness, anger, stoicism and sentimentality. Participants' description of their grief responses illustrated the ways in which they struggled to reconcile feelings of vulnerability and manly ideals of strength and stoicism. We gained insight into men's grief practices by looking at the ways in which they aligned themselves with a post-loss masculine identity. These identities, which included the adventurer, father-figure and the lamplighter, revealed gender-specific processes through which men understood and actively dealt with their tragic loss. The results offer novel insights to men's grief and identity work that may serve to affirm other men's experiences as well as guide counselling services targeted to young men.
Introduction Grief can be a challenging experience that catalyses a diverse array of social processes and practices (Jacobs, 2000 and Ritchie, 2003). While there has been scholarly attention paid to grief and the linkages to health and illness, gender analyses are conspicuously absent and, in particular, studies examining connections between masculinities and grief among young men. Instead much of the literature has focussed on describing gender differences between men and women. When Western men grieve in ways that invoke stoicism, anger and rationality, it has often been explained as flowing from socially sanctioned masculine ideals (Martin & Doka, 2000). Inversely, emotional outpourings, such as crying, expressed by Western women in grief are conceived of as typically feminine behaviours (Martin & Doka, 2000; Shamir & Travis, 2002). In the specific context of bereavement induced grief, Archer's (1999) review of the literature revealed that men experience significant mental and physical health impacts following the loss of a spouse, with subsequent mortality was most often attributed to accidents, lung cancer and heart disease (Martikainen & Valkonen, 1996). W. Stroebe and M. S. Stroebe (1993) suggest that this may be due the tendency for men to have fewer social support networks than women do. In contrast, Archer (1999) found that many men recover from grief more quickly than do women. Nolen-Hoeksema (1997) suggested that men's “problem solving” approaches to grief can reduce their potential for developing reactive depression. Because expressions of grief are deeply gendered, they are also powerfully policed and men who grieve in ways that do not embody socially assigned masculine practices (such as stoicism and rationality) can feel judged and alienated (Martin & Doka, 2000). The social practices around men's grief have been deemed detrimental by Zinner (2000) because “manning-up” and adopting a form of toughness positions crying and/or seeking supports as being weak and un-masculine. Perhaps this is especially evident among young men who aspire to embody manly virtues of competitiveness and self-reliance and risk taking following the loss of a significant other (Archer, 1999; Davies, McCrae, & Frank, 2000; Mayne, Acree, Chesney, & Folkman, 1998). Rieker and Bird (2000) have referred to such practices as choice disability, arguing that gender restraints can constrain men's expressions and perhaps experiences of death related grief. The aim of this article is to describe young men's grief experiences and how they expressed a masculine identity following the accidental death of a male friend. Findings from the study, while potentially affirming other men's experiences of grieving, may also influence young men-centred counselling services.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Discussion and conclusion Unintentional injury is the number one risk to the health and wellbeing of young men in North America. Barth (2001) has referred to young men between 15 and 25 as the “dangerous demographic” because of the elevated mortality in this group, as a result of injury due to car accidents, reckless behaviours and violence (Statistics Canada, 2005). While a majority of deaths occurring among young men are sudden and accidental, there is a paucity of research exploring the impact of these deaths on their male peers. Our study findings address this knowledge gap by making available an array of reactions and masculine identities that emerge in and around the tragic losses that so often occur among young men. Evident were young men's vulnerabilities that flowed from their profound unexpected losses and accompanying participant's words were a collage of highly revealing photographs. Within the men's grief processes were the influence of masculine ideals that guided how they might reasonably grieve in public when the events were fresh in participant's minds. Stoicism and anger can all be explained away as masculine ideals to which the men could legitimately align. We do not intend to argue that embodying these masculine ideas was either positive or negative for the health of participants. On the contrary, outpourings of emotion do not necessarily foster a ‘better’ experience of grief, and given the young age of the participants – relying on the aforementioned masculine ideals may have afforded some familiar performativity terrain to ease the sense of profound loss. While a minority of men talked about the tears that accompanied their sadness, most men spoke of the act of crying, particularly in a public outpouring of grief, as a feminine activity that would be seen as unacceptable or as signifying weakness to their friends. It is evident in the literature that women as well conceive of crying as feminised (Archer, 1999; Martin & Doka, 2000; Versalle & McDowell, 2004–2005). This gender policing of grief, the social dictate to “man up”, has consequences for men. Restricted options for processing and expressing grief led men to engage in activities in an attempt to mask feelings or make them go away. Following the death of their friend, for example, most participants spoke about the ways that they engaged in health harming behaviours in the form of substance overuse, driving fast while under the influence or doing sports such as skiing or climbing without taking safety precautions. In terms of masculine identities it is fair to say that, given the age and the temporal proximity of our interviews with the men's death of a peer, there is much that might change in how participants idealise themselves as men across time and their life course. Related to this we are limited in what we might claim flows entirely from the loss of a male peer versus what emerges at varying time points in young men's lives. For example, men who described having an adventurer identify may have been likely to take on that identity independent of the death of their friend, while there was some urgency among the lamplighters to avoid the all too common deaths within their impoverished social group. The father figure in turn aligned to honourable masculine virtues that perhaps signalled a loss of innocence and the need to be mature beyond their years. Men's gender work is dialectic, whereby opportunities are present for some men to reinvent themselves as changed for the better – in part at least - as a direct result of their loss and grief. While certainly not exhaustive these masculine identities are deeply connected to men's social location and illustrative of the ways in which masculinities shift - processes Connell (1995) refers to as a gender project. The father figure steps into adulthood and, as the term father implies, also receives the privileges of complicity masculinity. It is less clear in the case of the lamplighter who, while engaging some of the virtues that signal a hegemonic masculinity of the middle class, is still socially located within a working class/marginalized context. The adventurer maintains his masculine practices, reproducing those of his peer group- elite by way of social and economic capital. This highlights the way that all these masculine identities are contextually linked to other social determinants of men's health in ways that might restrain men's choices or afford an array of options – depending on how the men think and engage with their dominant discourses of masculinity. In this way, our study goes some way towards addressing Hearn's (2010) recommendation to address the gendering and embodiment of youth and young men to fully understand the contradictory means by which men receive status and experience marginalization. However, future research might benefit from adapting intersectionality to more explicitly engage other social factors, such as social class and ethnicity ( Griffith, 2012). Practically, findings from this study can inform the formal practice of health care providers and youth workers and the more informal supporters in young men's lives such as parents, coaches, friends and teachers. An understanding of the barriers that men might to outward expressions of sadness and loss can inspire more attention to other ways that they are communicating that they are in distress. Clinical services can be adapted to affirm a wider array of grief practices including ones influenced by dominant ideals of masculinity. This study also affords methodological insights to guide the efforts of future men's health research. Oliffe and Bottorff (2007) suggested photo-elicitation can uniquely engage men in qualitative research and topics with which they are not expected to articulate to others. Our experience of conducting this study resonates entirely, and we were struck by the depth of the men's thoughts amid their creativity round the images and narrations they shared. While photo-elicitation has been used to detail men's experiences of prostate cancer (Oliffe, 2003) and smoking through the eyes of fathers (Oliffe, Bottorff, Johnson, Kelly, & LeBeau, 2010) our study also engaged men to detail how they felt (internally and about others) in response to the death of a male peer. In doing so, we confirm photo-elicitation as having great potential to illuminate other men's health issues including suicide as well as less obvious topics such as fathering and unintentional childhood injury. While claimed here as a strength focussing entirely and exclusively on the experiences of young men might be argued as a limitation. In line with Galdas, Johnson, Percy, and Ratner (2010) we suggest future research might benefit from the inclusion of young women who experience the loss of a peer to empirically unpack gender similarities and differences as a means to further develop youth counselling services. In conclusion, young men's risk taking and accidental death is often positioned as an unfortunate fait accompli. By describing the nuanced ways that participants grieved such losses and subsequently constructed masculine identities this innovative study affords opportunities to thoughtfully consider young men's practices and the potential for catalysing their efforts towards advancing (rather than risking) their health and well-being.