Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning ** - Forums at Psych Central


Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-16-2019, 02:08 PM #1
sarahsweets's Avatar
sarahsweets sarahsweets is online now
Grand Poohbah
 
Member Since: Dec 2018
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,801
sarahsweets sarahsweets is online now
Grand Poohbah
sarahsweets's Avatar
sarahsweets Humor is my end game..
 
Member Since: Dec 2018
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,801 (SuperPoster!)

102 hugs
given
Trig Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning **

I want to treat this subject matter as sensitively as I can and I certainly do not want to disrespect or offend anyone; especially anyone who has ever been affected by or who has been a victim of any sort of violence. I was reading an article just a little while ago and I was thinking very seriously about this subject. Do you think that mass shooting events have anything to do with gender or mental health?

The reason I ask is the article I was reading talked specifically of males and men in regards to mass shooting events. I do not know enough about this subject to determine if there ever has been a female or woman involved in a mass shooting event and I was just wondering about it.
I do not want to compare mass shooting events and violence to mental health but I wonder does mental health play any role in it at all? Or is it simply a misguided extremist issue with someone who is unstable but not suffering a diagnosable mental illness?
Is it a situation where sterotypically men are more prone to violence? Is that even a valid argument to consider ? I do not know if statistically men are more prone to violence. I would think that itís a plausible possibility but I do not know for sure if any of that would provable. If you do you believe that men are more prone to violence and extremism why do you suppose that women are not? What kind of innate differences exist between the genders when it comes to violence and extremism?
One can even take into account bullying. All bullies are not extremists and there are female bullies as well, not just male bullies. I realize that this subject cannot be purely broken down into a male/female issue but it is something that I'm interested in exploring.
In regards to mental health: is it fair to assume somebody prone to violence is mentally ill?
On one hand someone could say that only a mentally ill person would commit acts of violence like this. But that is a stigma that we with mental illness suffer every day. People thinking that we are irrational and crazy and who don't understand what it is like to have a mental illness and live with a mental illnes. They might assume that mental illness by default means insane; and that you would need to be insane to commit mass shooting events or violence. Of course I know that is an unfair representation and I do not agree with it one bit. But the world at large think can this way so how do we differentiate between ďourĒ type mental illness, mental illness as it relates to violence and if mental illness has anything to do with it at all?

I suppose the gender issue is less important in the long run but it was something that made me think. I don't recall ever hearing about a female mass killer or a female killing large amounts of people for an extremist reason or for any reason for that matter. I wonder if indeed it is something that is solely done by men or more likely in men; as in scientifically sound genetic or heritability. I think it's unfair to chalk anything up to gender but I was just curious as to why it seems like more men do this sort of thing unless of course I am missing a story or fact or situation where a woman committed a mass killing event.Of course there is a plethora of reasons some of which I will never understand behind why these events take place. Maybe it's a product of society or some other effects that havenít been determined yet.
I would like to have an open dialogue about this without anyone being mean or derogatory. I would like us all to consider each otherís feelings about this subject. Please, if you feel that this will retraumatize you or trigger you, do not feel pressured to participate. I do not want to do that to anyone. Iím not trying to exclude anyone, Iím just trying to be as forthright and upfront about this uncomfortable subject as I can.
__________________
"I carried a watermelon?"

President of the no F's given society.

Last edited by bluekoi; 03-29-2019 at 10:43 AM. Reason: Add triggger icon.
sarahsweets is online now  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-16-2019, 02:25 PM #2
unaluna's Avatar
unaluna unaluna is offline
Elder Harridan x-hankster
 
Member Since: Jun 2011
Location: Milan/Michigan
Posts: 30,448
unaluna unaluna is offline
Elder Harridan x-hankster
unaluna's Avatar
unaluna - Lee Van Cleef fangirl
 
Member Since: Jun 2011
Location: Milan/Michigan
Posts: 30,448 (SuperPoster!)

5 yr Member
40.7k hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

I think it's pretty well accepted that a gun is a phallic symbol. So there is that. But then it probably goes back to hunters and gatherers. So it's a question of which came first, the chicken or the egg?
unaluna is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-17-2019, 04:58 AM #3
healingme4me's Avatar
healingme4me healingme4me is offline
Perpetually Pondering
Community Liaison Leader
Community Liaison
 
Member Since: Apr 2013
Location: New England
Posts: 45,617
healingme4me healingme4me is offline
Perpetually Pondering
Community Liaison Leader
Community Liaison
healingme4me's Avatar
healingme4me Needs a little reading lamp.
 
Member Since: Apr 2013
Location: New England
Posts: 45,617 (SuperPoster!)

5 yr Member
6,407 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

There's 2 incidences in CA that come to mind with women involved.

And yes, I loathe the stigma that MI gets over such events. It's not fair to lump the notion that everyone with MI is remotely capable of such violence.
healingme4me is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-19-2019, 10:08 AM #4
WishfulThinker66's Avatar
WishfulThinker66 WishfulThinker66 is offline
Grand Poohbah
 
Member Since: Jun 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,560
WishfulThinker66 WishfulThinker66 is offline
Grand Poohbah
WishfulThinker66's Avatar
WishfulThinker66 has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,560 (SuperPoster!)

122 hugs
given
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

I think it is obvious that the bulk of these mass shootings are terrorism related. When are they going to stop calling those shootings made by white Christian ultra-conservative men one-off events or those caused by mental derangement?

Why is it that we automatically call a Muslim man a terrorist yet not a white man?

Think of Timothy McVeigh, Alexandre Bisonette, the ecole polytechnique massacre, and most recently the New Zealand mosque shootings. These were not acts necessarily of a delusional male. They absolutely are the acts of terrorism. Take the first, he was a far right wing militia man with a grudge to bear against the establishment. Take the second and the last, these were acts of Islamaphobic racism. The third, the act of an incel with an accusation feminists had prevented him from he himself getting admission to the college.

I could go on. I am sick and tired of the failure to call the acts of white nationalist racist bigots terrorism.

As for the recent events in New Zealand. The American President had an opportunity to address this by disavowing white nationalism supremacy. Unless he has since come out and said otherwise without my knowing and condemned the actions as terrorist, he instead chose to say the American people were sorry, sending his condolences, and thoughts and prayers wasn't good enough.
WishfulThinker66 is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-19-2019, 01:13 PM #5
SilverTrees's Avatar
SilverTrees SilverTrees is offline
Veteran Member
 
Member Since: Mar 2019
Location: Here
Posts: 633
SilverTrees SilverTrees is offline
Veteran Member
SilverTrees's Avatar
SilverTrees is wishing everyone peace and hope.
 
Member Since: Mar 2019
Location: Here
Posts: 633 (SuperPoster!)

856 hugs
given
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

Good post Sarah. Interesting questions.

You mentioned bullying. An important point. Many psychologists believe that girls are in fact as aggressive as boys but the difference is that angry boys are more likely to engage in physical aggression whereas angry girls engage in relational aggression (gossiping, trying to tarnish a girl's reputation, excluding her from the group etc).

You are right. The vast majority of violent crime is perpetrated by men. Why?

I think there could be a genetic factor though I think possibly what also makes a significant difference is how boys and girls are socialized. Girls at a very young age are expected to be quiet and "get along" and "be kind" etc. It is considered okay for boys to disagree and be loud and "boys will be boys." Boys are still being told not to cry or exhibit outward signs of sadness or fear.

Thought exercise:
imagine yourself at Starbucks waiting for your coffee one morning. You witness a 45 year old man in a business suit screaming and berating the barista (a 16 yr old girl) because the amount of foam on his cappuccino was wrong. Now imagine instead that the 45 yr old screaming at the girl is a woman. Did you feel the same way in each scenario? Have you ever seen that happen? I've witnessed grown men do this on more than one occasion. I have never seen a woman behave like that at a coffee shop. It's skewed I realize because I obviously have not been to every coffee place all over the world to make obs.
But you see my point. I think if a 45 yr old woman behaved that way, she would receive much harsher responses and more shock from the public than the man. I could be wrong...but if you look at something more serious....a man who killed his child versus a woman who killed her child....I find the press coverage is actually much tougher on the female perpetrator because on some level violence from men is expected.

I think it is possible that as women take on more and more dominant positions of power in society, we could start to see more violence from women. For example, there have already been some cases of sexual harassment perpetrated by women in a position of authority over a male subordinate but nobody wants to talk about it. And there are some men silently being attacked by their wives on a regular basis. My doctor recently told me about one of his male patients who has scratch scars all over his face from his wife.

I understand what folks are saying about the stigma of mental illness and not wanting the rest of us to be lumped together with violent offenders. I don't want that either. I live with depression myself. That said, I don't think we could call a 15 yr old boy mentally well right before he went to school one day, shot his peers, and then shot himself. Depression seems to be at the root of many of those school shootings (and easy access to guns).

There is something called psychotic depression. I am wondering if depressed boys are more at risk for it because they are socialized not to display or communicate their sadness, not to ask for help. To be clear, I am NOT saying that most depressed people would hurt someone else. Nor am I saying that a person living with psychotic depression would necessarily hurt someone. I personally knew one woman struggling with psychotic depression. She was not a danger to others; she was convinced that people were trying to poison her. I should also mention that with the right help she got better. Perhaps there was a man out there in the world with a similar condition who never told anyone, never got help, and went on to kill the people he was sure were trying to poison him?

There is evidence that when boys and men get depressed they often engage in externalizing behaviors whereas girls and women tend to internalize. The extreme for boys and men would be homicide. The extreme for girls and women would be suicide. These are trends of course, plenty of depressed men end their lives without a homicidal component. Is the trend genetic or is it because society normalizes girls who are sad and crying and boys who are angry and punch a wall (or someone else).

When someone commits a violent act, I believe we should be studying them and trying to figure out as much as possible about them so we can learn and grow and work on a safer society. When those individuals are deemed "evil monsters" and die by death sentence, I am not sure that helps the rest of us or future generations. Whether we like it or not, those people are human. And sometimes humans engage in heinous acts.

Serial killers. Mostly white men. Terrible abuse often in childhood though not always. Some were born as psychopaths; their brains simply aren't wired the way others are. Completely devoid of empathy. Though not all psychopaths are killers. Many are CEOs. Seriously.

An interesting study would be to compare female and male psychopaths. Is there any similarity in their aggression or violence compared with the rest of the population or are male psychopaths still much more likely to be violent than females?

Another interesting phenomenon I recently read about. Has anyone read about the history of adoption among many violent offenders? Including killers. To be clear, I am NOT saying that all adopted children grow up to be violent. Of course not. But there are some important statistics worth looking at. Some serial killers who targeted women had fantasized about meeting their biological mother and killing her...they never met her...they killed other women instead.

In short, there is much we do not know or understand about our own species. I think the answer is more objective analysis and remembering that humans are still humans regardless of what they have done...they didn't suddenly morph into a new species.


Question: given that most violent crime is committed by boys and men, shouldn't we be trying to help them rather than place all the focus for human rights and development on girls and women? Doesn't equality mean that everyone should get a fair shot in life? If some men are also being sexually harassed by women or beaten by their wives, don't we need to be able to discuss their side of it too? Some feminists would immediately shut me down for even saying that.

Last edited by SilverTrees; 03-19-2019 at 02:01 PM.
SilverTrees is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-20-2019, 06:22 PM #6
healingme4me's Avatar
healingme4me healingme4me is offline
Perpetually Pondering
Community Liaison Leader
Community Liaison
 
Member Since: Apr 2013
Location: New England
Posts: 45,617
healingme4me healingme4me is offline
Perpetually Pondering
Community Liaison Leader
Community Liaison
healingme4me's Avatar
healingme4me Needs a little reading lamp.
 
Member Since: Apr 2013
Location: New England
Posts: 45,617 (SuperPoster!)

5 yr Member
6,407 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverTrees View Post
Good post Sarah. Interesting questions.



You mentioned bullying. An important point. Many psychologists believe that girls are in fact as aggressive as boys but the difference is that angry boys are more likely to engage in physical aggression whereas angry girls engage in relational aggression (gossiping, trying to tarnish a girl's reputation, excluding her from the group etc).



You are right. The vast majority of violent crime is perpetrated by men. Why?



I think there could be a genetic factor though I think possibly what also makes a significant difference is how boys and girls are socialized. Girls at a very young age are expected to be quiet and "get along" and "be kind" etc. It is considered okay for boys to disagree and be loud and "boys will be boys." Boys are still being told not to cry or exhibit outward signs of sadness or fear.



Thought exercise:

imagine yourself at Starbucks waiting for your coffee one morning. You witness a 45 year old man in a business suit screaming and berating the barista (a 16 yr old girl) because the amount of foam on his cappuccino was wrong. Now imagine instead that the 45 yr old screaming at the girl is a woman. Did you feel the same way in each scenario? Have you ever seen that happen? I've witnessed grown men do this on more than one occasion. I have never seen a woman behave like that at a coffee shop. It's skewed I realize because I obviously have not been to every coffee place all over the world to make obs.

But you see my point. I think if a 45 yr old woman behaved that way, she would receive much harsher responses and more shock from the public than the man. I could be wrong...but if you look at something more serious....a man who killed his child versus a woman who killed her child....I find the press coverage is actually much tougher on the female perpetrator because on some level violence from men is expected.



I think it is possible that as women take on more and more dominant positions of power in society, we could start to see more violence from women. For example, there have already been some cases of sexual harassment perpetrated by women in a position of authority over a male subordinate but nobody wants to talk about it. And there are some men silently being attacked by their wives on a regular basis. My doctor recently told me about one of his male patients who has scratch scars all over his face from his wife.



I understand what folks are saying about the stigma of mental illness and not wanting the rest of us to be lumped together with violent offenders. I don't want that either. I live with depression myself. That said, I don't think we could call a 15 yr old boy mentally well right before he went to school one day, shot his peers, and then shot himself. Depression seems to be at the root of many of those school shootings (and easy access to guns).



There is something called psychotic depression. I am wondering if depressed boys are more at risk for it because they are socialized not to display or communicate their sadness, not to ask for help. To be clear, I am NOT saying that most depressed people would hurt someone else. Nor am I saying that a person living with psychotic depression would necessarily hurt someone. I personally knew one woman struggling with psychotic depression. She was not a danger to others; she was convinced that people were trying to poison her. I should also mention that with the right help she got better. Perhaps there was a man out there in the world with a similar condition who never told anyone, never got help, and went on to kill the people he was sure were trying to poison him?



There is evidence that when boys and men get depressed they often engage in externalizing behaviors whereas girls and women tend to internalize. The extreme for boys and men would be homicide. The extreme for girls and women would be suicide. These are trends of course, plenty of depressed men end their lives without a homicidal component. Is the trend genetic or is it because society normalizes girls who are sad and crying and boys who are angry and punch a wall (or someone else).



When someone commits a violent act, I believe we should be studying them and trying to figure out as much as possible about them so we can learn and grow and work on a safer society. When those individuals are deemed "evil monsters" and die by death sentence, I am not sure that helps the rest of us or future generations. Whether we like it or not, those people are human. And sometimes humans engage in heinous acts.



Serial killers. Mostly white men. Terrible abuse often in childhood though not always. Some were born as psychopaths; their brains simply aren't wired the way others are. Completely devoid of empathy. Though not all psychopaths are killers. Many are CEOs. Seriously.



An interesting study would be to compare female and male psychopaths. Is there any similarity in their aggression or violence compared with the rest of the population or are male psychopaths still much more likely to be violent than females?



Another interesting phenomenon I recently read about. Has anyone read about the history of adoption among many violent offenders? Including killers. To be clear, I am NOT saying that all adopted children grow up to be violent. Of course not. But there are some important statistics worth looking at. Some serial killers who targeted women had fantasized about meeting their biological mother and killing her...they never met her...they killed other women instead.



In short, there is much we do not know or understand about our own species. I think the answer is more objective analysis and remembering that humans are still humans regardless of what they have done...they didn't suddenly morph into a new species.





Question: given that most violent crime is committed by boys and men, shouldn't we be trying to help them rather than place all the focus for human rights and development on girls and women? Doesn't equality mean that everyone should get a fair shot in life? If some men are also being sexually harassed by women or beaten by their wives, don't we need to be able to discuss their side of it too? Some feminists would immediately shut me down for even saying that.
There is a need to address at a psychology level, I concur.

I don't have much to add. I'm at a bit of a numb point on some non homicidal but violent behavior from within a social circle at the moment.
healingme4me is offline  
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-21-2019, 09:32 AM #7
-jimi-'s Avatar
-jimi- -jimi- is offline
Jimi the rat
 
Member Since: Dec 2008
Location: Northern Europe
Posts: 6,039
-jimi- -jimi- is offline
Jimi the rat
-jimi-'s Avatar
-jimi- is a vermin. Please feed me anyway.
 
Member Since: Dec 2008
Location: Northern Europe
Posts: 6,039

10 yr Member PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

Among ALL risk factors, gender is the absolutely biggest one. There is no way of getting out of that.
__________________
-jimi- is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-21-2019, 10:28 AM #8
Nowinners's Avatar
Nowinners Nowinners is offline
Member
 
Member Since: Aug 2017
Location: US
Posts: 464
Nowinners Nowinners is offline
Member
Nowinners's Avatar
Nowinners has no updates.
 
Member Since: Aug 2017
Location: US
Posts: 464

1,426 hugs
given
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

Both men and women commit acts of violence but I do think violent crime arrests/incarcerations show a larger # of men do.

What about the theory that in early society, powerful (and many times violent) men had numerous wives resulting in the gene population of men being a bit more violent? I faintly recall reading that Genghis Khan genes can be found in a large part of the world population and only men can pass down Y traits. Violence passed down through natural selection? Perhaps it will moderate over time since there aren't any modern day Genghis Khans?
Nowinners is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-21-2019, 10:58 AM #9
Nowinners's Avatar
Nowinners Nowinners is offline
Member
 
Member Since: Aug 2017
Location: US
Posts: 464
Nowinners Nowinners is offline
Member
Nowinners's Avatar
Nowinners has no updates.
 
Member Since: Aug 2017
Location: US
Posts: 464

1,426 hugs
given
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

And in regards to MH and natural selection--some of our mental health issues may simply be a case of characteristics that were once optimal aren't in modern society. My anxiety and jumpiness worked against me on the phone when I worked in a call center but that same jumpiness saved me from stepping on snakes growing up in a remote area. And it is my understanding that there is such a thing as a nonviolent psychopath. A nonviolent psychopath might really have an advantage in today's modern world....
Nowinners is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 03-21-2019, 11:06 AM #10
WishfulThinker66's Avatar
WishfulThinker66 WishfulThinker66 is offline
Grand Poohbah
 
Member Since: Jun 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,560
WishfulThinker66 WishfulThinker66 is offline
Grand Poohbah
WishfulThinker66's Avatar
WishfulThinker66 has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,560 (SuperPoster!)

122 hugs
given
Default Re: Mass shooting events in relation to mental health and gender. **trigger warning *

Please please please please get it folks. These are not the acts of bullied men. These are the acts of white nationalism. These are the acts of (usually men) bigots intensely set up with the idea that somehow their interpretation of the way life should be is under threat. These men are generally white, with a supreme idealogical viewpoint of the supremacy of maintaining the status quo of white Christian male domination and supremacy. They are racists. They are anti-immigrant. They are religiously intolerant. They are homophobic. They are anti-feminist. For God's sake stop calling these one-off events committed by delusional lunatics. Stop using bullying as an excuse. Call it what these are - acts of terrorism. And stand up against the American President's own racist Islamaphobic behaviour which has encouraged such disgusting viewpoints and can be directly linked to the rise in such thinking. He is responsible for making thinking this way acceptable. This is not acceptable. Remember, he called the marching far right-wing conservative white-supremists 'good people'. Don't accept this.

The Islamic Mosques in this province (Saskatchewan) and elsewhere across my country have opened their doors this week to the public. What a fabulous opportunity to meet your neighbours, stand in solidarity with them against hatred, and learn a little about your fellow brothers and sisters in this world. This is but one start to end domestic terrorism.
WishfulThinker66 is offline  
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Closed Thread

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:26 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® — Copyright © 2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.



 

Psych Central Forums

Psych Central is the leading mental health website, overseen by mental health professionals since 1995.

 

Helplines and Lifelines

The material on this site is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment provided by a qualified health care provider. .

Always consult your doctor or mental health professional before trying anything you read here.
Please read the full disclaimer.