First Advisor

Ericka Kimball

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychology and University Honors




Masculinity, Men -- Mental health, Group psychotherapy, Sex role




This study seeks to explore the influential nature of masculinity norms on male mental health from a clinician's viewpoint. Specifically, the research examines the unique outcomes of all male therapy groups as a way to better understand the complex social and psychological dynamics of gender role adherence. A ten question Qualtrics survey was distributed via email to therapists who are currently advertising a “men’s issues” support group on Psychology Today’s “Find a Therapist” online directory. The questionnaire asked each practitioner to reflect upon their clinical experience working with men, interpersonal process groups, and contemporary issues regarding masculinity norms in America. A qualitative, thematic-based coding strategy was applied to the practitioners’ responses and from this analysis, three primary themes and three corresponding sub-themes emerged. The three overarching themes represent sociological spheres of existence for the male client (public; private; and therapy) and the representative sub-themes (societal pressures and masculinity constructs; shame and invulnerability; safety and cognitive exploration) highlight the emotional expression within each domain. Prominent theories within the field of clinical psychology are applied to the data and future directions are suggested for follow-up studies.


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