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Male carers being stigmatised? - Carers UK Forum

Male carers being stigmatised?

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Despite the fact that we are no longer in the Middle Ages, and beliefs about the roles of women have changed, caring is still seen by many as a women’s job.

There’s no doubt that this belief makes it hard for men to admit that they are carers. Traditionally men are seen as being the main breadwinners, bringing home the money but when life shifts so quickly roles can quickly be forgotten.

Being a carer can be a very stressful job for anyone but would it be fair to say it could be harder for men because being a carer lacks “macho-ness?”

There are probably tons of male carers out there that we just don’t hear about, so I was moseying around on the web and found a video of two men who were more than willing to speak out about their experiences as carers.

Do you think the stigma stick exists when men do things some people would expect women to do?
Interesting topic for discussion tinkq, which is why I've moved your post to general discussion .I seem to recall us having a similar debate some time ago.
I think it fair to say that men in general find it more difficult to talk about the subject than us women do. We are lucky on this forum as we have a number of male members who are carers who are willing to talk about their caring role. I would also say yes their is a stigma attached to male carers who do things you would generally expect women to do, in saying that I'm referring to how the role would be perceived by people outside of the caring role.
Most studies and surveys put male carers at around 40% of the caring population, but I doubt that most organisations supporting carers - statutory or voluntary - have that kind of percentage on their books.

So yes, there is an element of male stigma and probably some "they don't do what I need."
I dont mind telling people that I care for my wife , infact I enjoy letting people know as they look at you in a different way , I think its how one handles the situation as I have never let it get the better of me .
And as all ready been said there are proberly more men out there that care that we dont know about , mainly because of the stigma that goes with it .
Ive never,in my own case,found any sense of being stigmatized.It might be some do feel very stigmatized,I dont know?.

Its a thought-provoking topic.
I think that because I am retired (I took early retirement at 50). Most of the people we know, just accept that I'm Jan's carer. I don't think that any one has thought it odd that, as a man, I'm also a Carer.

The funny thing is, some of our older male friends, who now find them selves in the roll of Carer to their wives, do seem to see me in a different way. They sometimes let off steam, to me about all the fetching and carrying, cooking, house work, and the fact that their social life seems to have become almost non existent. It all ways makes me laugh, I have one stock answer for them...."welcome to my world!".

I do feel sorry for them and their other halves, it seems to be a shock to both of them that they are now in this position. Often the man has never had to lift a finger at home, shopping, meals, clean clothes, and a clean and tidy home, all used to magically materialise!
It's very difficult for the ladies too, for years they have done everything their way, so that most of it has become second nature to them. Now they find that they are having to give instructions to their husbands. Husbands that are feeling out of their depth. I know it shouldn't, but it does make me chuckle, because more often than not it ends up with them bickering, because of the frustration of the one who knows how to do it, but can't and the other that wants to do their best but doesn't know how.

I was lucky, my mum/dad got me and my sisters able to 'cook and keep house'. Also I love to cook, and look after my Jan.
i've never thought of any stigma that might be attached to caring for my wife,i just do it.i've been called a scrounger and been accused of frauding inland revenue by a taxi driver whom i work with,because the only 16 hour job i could find is driving a taxi(self employed),but he's just an idiot,the thing that keeps me going is the question of would my wife do the same for me,the answer is yes,so who cares what people think
I have never,as I said,found any evidence of stigma towards male carers.As it happens,I care for my mother,but I have not heard of fellow male carers having this problem.

I think CARERS,male and female alike,do get marginalised,excluded,etc,but thats too typical of the reality of being a carer in the UK,today.
I've never really felt any bad reactions as a result of me being male. Being a carer, yes, but not because of gender. But I'm not a particularly macho guy, I don't know how it would be for others.
I don't think it's so much about reactions as about individual expectations: most people don't expect that men are carers. Whenever I give talks on the subject, it's rare for the audience to come up with anything like the true figures - most plump for 80%+ female carers, rather than 60/40 female/male. And absolutely no sense of the fact that the older people are, the more likely that the carer is male...