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Emotion Phobia in Men.

Posted Aug 25 2011 11:26am

Phobias manchester Working with a wide range of men, I am struck that the stereotype of men being unemotional is simply not true. Men, like women, fall on the spectrum from those who are extremely comfortable and aware of their emotional worlds, to those who, simply, aren't.

Of course we are all emotional creatures. Everything we experience we do so with an emotional tone. We see a beautiful woman, and we feel attraction. We see the England football team, and we feel disappointment.

Some men, however, have become scared of their emotional lives. They choose to see themselves as "rational", and become distrustful of emotions in themselves and others. They have become emotion phobic.

There are three problems with emotion phobia. The first is that emotions are a social lubricant that oils our relationships with other people. If we don't pay attention to our own emotions, or value those of others, we can become remote, unconnected and socially isolated figures.

The second is that emotion phobic’s, like everybody else, can experience emotional disorders. Depression and anxiety can affect any one of us and are pretty devastating. If we are emotion phobic and become depressed or anxious, we may experience these things more acutely, not less.

Finally, there is our relationship with women. Because of the development of the female brain, women often have a more acutely aware sense of their emotional lives. Women are simply more interested in emotions as a result. If you are emotion phobic, you will spend a lifetime misunderstanding women and what they need from you.

Can anything be done? Well I believe there is. Many men can benefit from an exploration of their emotional lives. Getting in touch with your feelings doesn't mean crying all the time either. If you're not scared of your emotions, you will experience more of the positive emotions too, like love, joy, peace and contentment. In many ways it's about allowing yourself to become more fully alive.


Dr Phil Tyson is a Men's Psychotherapist based in Manchester in the UK.  He offers:

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