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Review of "The Male Stress Survival Guide"

By Georgia Witkin
Newmarket Press, 2002
Review by Christian Perring, Ph.D. on Dec 7th 2004
The Male Stress Survival Guide

These days most of us lead stressful lives, working long hours and dealing with many demands.  While it is rare to experience panic attacks, many people experience significant stress.  The Male Stress Survival Guide is aimed at a general readership, discussing the many kinds of causes of stress in men and ways to reduce stress.  There are 9 chapters, spelling out gender differences, the distinction between good stress and bad stress, the biological causes and effects of stress, warnings signs of stress, the pressures on young boys and men, hidden stresses, stress at work, stress in marriage and midlife, and living with stress.  Author Georgia Witkin writes in straightforward language and provides many lists full of information.  She gives lots of cases of particular men who suffer stress to make it easier for readers to relate to the experience.  She also includes plenty of scientific data from recent experimental literature, which helps to reassure the reader that she knows what she is talking about.

The problem with the category of stress is that it is so broad.  Anxiety is closely connected with depression, insomnia, impatience, anger, alcohol and substance abuse, sexual disorders, and a host of other bodily problems.  Stress is both a cause and an effect of the other problems.  So The Male Stress Survival Guide has to cover a very broad range of life issues.  Witkin's discussion of each particular topic is fairly brief, providing some essential details but not going into detail.  So this self-help book may be a good starting point for men who are feeling stressed out, and it does give plenty of suggestions about how to cope with the problems and stay healthy.  But for those who have serious anxiety issues, the book is unlikely to give enough information or guidance to really solve the problems. 


© 2004 Christian Perring. All rights reserved.


Christian Perring, Ph.D., is Academic Chair of the Arts & Humanities Division and Chair of the Philosophy Department at Dowling College, Long Island. He is also editor of Metapsychology Online Review.  His main research is on philosophical issues in medicine, psychiatry and psychology.

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