Psychology, Professional


Summer 6-28-2022

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.)

Type of Paper/Work



Len Jennings

Second Advisor

Christopher Vye


The literature is replete with evidence that men seem to experience and cope with mental health in different ways than women (Levant & Pollack, 1995, Levant, 1992; Winkler, Pjrek, & Kasper, 2005). Gender role socialization contributes to the tendency for boys and men to externalize their mental health struggles. The propensity for males to avoid seeking help is an unfortunate, but predictable result of the male socialization process (Li & Gal, 2021). In fact, suicide in America is dominated by white men, who account for approximately 70 percent of all cases (Watkins, 2021). The continued rise in depression, anxiety, and suicide rates for men demonstrates an imperative need for psychological services, yet there continues to be a challenge in getting men to seek psychological services for their mental health. The development of the UNMASKED group therapy manual is a contribution to practice that provides guidelines for clinicians to assist adolescent boys through exploring, processing, and expressing their masculine identity in a more adaptive manner. The acronym UNMASKED refers to Understanding the Needs of Male Adolescents through Self-reflection, Knowledge, Effective strategies, and Dialogue. It is anticipated that the introduction of the UNMASKED manual will help clinicians guide boys and men in embracing a new, more adaptive definition of masculinity. The larger goal of this contribution to practice is to increase the rates of men seeking therapeutic services and to reduce the rates of male depression and suicide. The limitations, implications, and recommendations for future practice and research are also discussed.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.