The Relationship Between Perfectionism and Mental Health Help-seeking Intention Among Men: A Cross-sectional Study

  • Gry Kvalevaag Svendsen

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


Introduction: Research and national statistics has shown that men are less likely to utilise mental health services and more likely to die by suicide, despite targeted efforts to reduce mental health help-seeking stigma. It is therefore important to further understanding structural and personal factors that affect men’s likelihood of seeking help for mental health concerns. Perfectionism is one personality variable that has been linked to suicide and lower help-seeking. Researchers have therefore hypothesised that perfectionism could interfere with help-seeking and increase the risk of negative mental health outcomes, due to a preference for self-reliant coping styles and fear vulnerability and negative evaluation from others.
Objectives: This study wanted to expand on the current gaps and limitations of the emerging literature interested in mental health help-seeking among men, and the relationship between perfectionism and help-seeking. This study explored the association between perfectionism and mental health help-seeking intention among men from the UK public, and whether this relationship was influenced by psychological flexibility.
Method: This study applied a quantitative cross-sectional correlational design. 53 men completed an online survey. The survey consisted of three scales: The Big Three Perfectionism Scale, the Acceptance and Action – Stigma Questionnaire, and the Mental Help Seeking Intention Scale. Age, education, occupation, and past treatment were explored as confounders.
Results: No significant association between perfectionism and help-seeking intention, nor did psychological flexibility moderate the strength of this relationship. Men who had no previous mental health service/professional involvement reported significantly lower help-seeking intentions compared to men who had. No effect for age, education, and occupation.
Conclusion: There was no relationship between perfectionism and mental health help-seeking intention among men from the public. Since this study did not reach statistical power there is a need to further explore this relationship in a larger- and more diverse male sample.
Date of AwardNov 2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Teesside University
SupervisorAlan Robert Bowman (Supervisor)

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