College students’ conformity to masculine role norms and help-seeking intentions for suicidal thoughts.

The present study tested a model interrelating intentions to seek psychological help for suicidal thoughts with conformity to 9 masculine role norms: winning, emotional control, risk-taking, violence, power over women, playboy, self-reliance, primacy of work, and heterosexual self-presentation. In addition, the present study examined the effects of contextual variables, such as participants’ gender or race and whether one is seeking formal help (i.e., from a psychologist, medical doctor, or phone line) or informal help (i.e., from a parent, friend, partner, or relative). Structural equation modeling with a college student sample (N = 2,504) indicated that conformity to masculine role norms of emotional control and self-reliance produced the strongest and most robust associations with intentions to seek formal or informal help. Violence, power over women, and heterosexual self-presentation norms also evidenced modest relationships with help-seeking intentions but were significantly stronger for the informal help-seeking scenario. Winning yielded a statistically stronger relationship with help-seeking intentions for the formal help scenario. Measurement and structural invariance tests indicated that race did not moderate the associations between conformity to masculine role norms and help-seeking intentions, whereas mixed evidence suggested that women may have a stronger relationship between the playboy norm and intentions to seek informal help compared with men. These findings highlight the multidimensional nature of masculine roles and suggest that norms of self-reliance and emotional control may be the most salient help-seeking barriers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)