From The Tribune staff reports
A survey of 2,445 American men has revealed the impact of social distancing on men’s health since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. While men are often stereotyped as less inclined to discuss their feelings, it appears that the absence of meet-ups with their friends has had a significant impact on their general well-being.
Whether it is hanging at the barber shop, watching sports in a bar or cards in the basement on a weeknight, the survey by AlcoholRehab.com has revealed how much men miss just being with their buddies.
Over half of those polled in Alabama (56%) revealed they have often felt depressed as a result of having limited contact with friends since the start of the pandemic.
Interestingly, 15% of them said that in pre-pandemic times, they’d offload to their friends before their partner about any issues they might have, perhaps not wanting to burden their significant other or worry them unduly.
But what is it that men have missed the most discussing with friends? Understandably, the survey found that nearly a quarter (23%) discussed relationship issues and a similar amount talked about family issues. However, it is work-related issues that men are most willing to get off their chest (46%). Since so many are working from home, they are unable to discuss issues with work colleagues. Money issues preoccupy 8% of men.
When it comes to bonding, a substantial 70% said they are happiest when just hanging out together. Nearly one in five (16%) feel they bond most when watching or playing sports together, and more than one in 10 (14%) say it is when they drink together.
The most popular drinking session is during the Super Bowl; 33% of men say this yearly event represents the best drinking session of them all and nearly a quarter (24%) prefer to share beers on Christmas Eve. Twenty-one percent enjoy a session on New Year’s Eve and the same amount enjoy drinks over Thanksgiving.
Of course, this year will be very different; thanks to social distancing measures, many men (and women) may have to spend these normally significant social occasions with far fewer friends or family.