“Why don’t you understand?” “Talk to me!”Does this sound like an universal woe between couples? Well, this is referencing gender driven perception. The differences between male and female perception, thinking, communication and behavior have been interest of universal research, discussions, debates, and not to forget, they have been heart of jokes.
While, every person is unique with individual attributes, studies do reveal some fascinating and some confusing gender based differences. It’s not just the ‘Y’ chromosome that forms the perception differences, but it is also the different sociocultural background, religious beliefs and geographical rooting that contribute to our perceptions. It is interlinked accomplishment of both nature and nurture.
I discuss a serious situation at home with my husband, and the only response that I get is a cold silent nod. Why does he not respond or even acknowledge what I am saying? Why is he ignoring the issue with a silence? As I perceive, is this silence genuine lack of interest? “I am listening to you and I am trying to find a solution to the situation” finally I get a response after an extreme act of melodrama. While I would like to talk, think aloud and share my thoughts, my companion prefers to think in silence and find a solution. This is a glaring example of difference between genders responding to a situation.
Infinite research papers have been published claiming difference in male and female brains structure and chemicals. I am no expert to comment on this, but would like to share here Baron-Cohen’s theory of Empathizing and Systemizing, which claims that female brain is hard wired for identifying with others thoughts and feelings and to respond with an apt emotion. While male brains are prone to construct systems and determine how things work.
Women are good at picking on subtlety and hence have a tendency to use ‘hint language’ expecting their spouse to understand what they intent or what they want. I have had experiences where I have been upset over something for days and my husband has not even realized it, just because I didn’t pronounce it loud and clear in BOLD CAPITAL LETTERS! Unfortunately men don’t understand hint language. They focus on the content of the language and not the hidden message unlike women. That explains their inability to notice nuance of tacit emotions
I can go on with the list of differences…For women, shopping is an activity to be savored and enjoyed while for men it is a task or a mission to be accomplished as quickly as possible. Men’s capacity to sleep through most sounds, whether it is a baby crying or music blasting throws me off ground in astonishment.
Trying to change or expecting men to behave as per our expectation is like trying to change the brain structure. Gradually with conscious effort it is possible to acquire new skills and accomplish common goals but can’t change the basic composition. Men are wired differently and so they think, act and communicate differently. The best way to beat this difference is to accept and respect this difference and attempt to understand and speak their language, not ours. Let these differences compliment and not complicate. Amen!