Gender differences in relationships

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David
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Gender differences in relationships

Post by David »

My couples work is increasingly showing me just how different men and women are in how they deal with emotions. My own psychotherapy training was completely devoid of understanding the gender differences between men and women. The vast majority of mental health services comes at things from the feminine imperative and assumes men are the ones that are broken and they dont process emotions properly. From the little Ive found written on this issue and my own expereince has highlighted men do feel emotions and know them well, they just process them from a more doing perspective. My own (female) therapist would constantly tell me I was a human being, not a human doing. I now see she had got this totally wrong. when working individually with my mostly male clients, we will often do something whilst talking, walking, working on making something. this feels less threatening and more natural to men.

As a generalisations men like things and women like people. Studies done on 1 day old babies show males will fixate more an object and females more on a face. Likely to do with the testosterone flood that male foetuses experience in the uterus. Men approach things more from a rational perspective, women more from an emotional standpoint.

Women like to talk things through, men like to get on and do stuff. I see in many affairs men want to move on (sometimes felt as wanting to sweep stuff under the rug) whilst women have a need to understand why this happened. Neither is wrong and I think the trick is for each to better understand the other's worldview. Most therapists are trained that men dont do emotions and men are the problem. My experience is men do feel, they just communicate and process their feelings in a different way.

For the women here wishing to better understand their male partner's worldview from an emotional perspective, I would recommend Tom Golden's work. He also has some good youtube channel call Men are Good. : https://www.youtube.com/user/1menaregood1

There doesn't seem to be much else around that is not totally radical.

For a more radical read, this book written by Psychologist Shawn Smith, written for men is worth a read, although it may trigger some of the folk here. It will give an insight into how men think and operate. The Tactical Guide to Women: How Men Can Manage Risk in Dating and Marriage

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Re: Gender differences in relationships

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This is interesting. I can see how the idea of that book may well trigger some people ... though it doesn't trigger me.

To add an additional layer of confusion to this, I feel strongly that I have quite a masculine-style mind - at least for a woman. And this is expressed in many aspects of my thinking, not just when it comes to the emotional and relationships. I have even been known to say that talking doesn't solve problems, doing something about solving them does! :ymdevil: I also cause people's gaydars to come up with false positives from time to time.

In the same way as recognising where one is on the activist-pragmatist-theorist-reflector map can be helpful, I wonder if it wouldn't also be useful to identify one's place on a feeling - doing continuum, where more men would be found towards the 'doing' end and more women would be found at the 'feeling' end. I would put myself close to the centre. A generally greater awareness of this variation might also help us to see our projections, especially onto LOs, as a bit more for what they really are?
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

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Last edited by L-F on Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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David
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

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TheMoon wrote: Sat Jun 09, 2018 7:08 am In the same way as recognising where one is on the activist-pragmatist-theorist-reflector map can be helpful, I wonder if it wouldn't also be useful to identify one's place on a feeling - doing continuum, where more men would be found towards the 'doing' end and more women would be found at the 'feeling' end. I would put myself close to the centre. A generally greater awareness of this variation might also help us to see our projections, especially onto LOs, as a bit more for what they really are?
I like that idea and agree it still comes back down to our projections
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

Post by JupiterTaco »

I actually stand behind a book called All Men Are Jerks (Until Proven Otherwise). Not how the title sounds, it just goes into how women are conditioned to expect too much from relationships and how the ways people are raised differently contributes to problems in relationships. I remember one story in it about a woman who had a male friend she'd get together with regularly, whom she wasn't even interested in to begin with, and her friends insisted that he must really like her because he hasn't made a move on her yet. She eventually found out he was gay.
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

Post by Ivanhoe »

What I Want in a "Relationship" with a woman.

Companionship and affection (with sex) with a woman to whom I’m attracted; who is intelligent and educated and secure enough to challenge me; who can argue seriously about serious topics without taking them personally (and can discuss what taking things personally means); who likes to have fun; who is healthy enough to do outdoor activities; who is not overtly religious; who understands and supports my need for male friends (and can relate to them as flawed humans); who has her own female friends; who does not need my money; who is willing to travel; who is able to embrace my now tiny family (as I will hers) and recognize that my son comes first if necessary (as I will her children to her if she has them); who has her own interests and is happy that I have mine; who has the ability to want an honest relationship (as do I) that means: she is willing to state her needs and fears with clarity and is willing to discuss those (and mine) even through adult embarrassment and will not assume I intuitively know things even though she would know them under the same circumstances.
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TheMoon
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

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Ivanhoe wrote: Sun Jun 10, 2018 6:50 pm What I Want in a "Relationship" with a woman ...

... under the same circumstances.
What a pity you are so far away Ivanhoe =)) !

Seriously though, this all sounds very reasonable to me. I just can't quite imagine any man actually coming out with this and putting it all on the table. Would you? And if so, at what stage? To be honest also, even though it's good to know the score, I don't know that I wouldn't be a bit freaked out by it at the same time.
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

Post by Ivanhoe »

TheMoon wrote: Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:30 pm [quote=Ivanhoe post_id=45605 time=<a href="tel:1528653027">1528653027</a> user_id=1266]
What I Want in a "Relationship" with a woman ...

... under the same circumstances.
What a pity you are so far away Ivanhoe =)) !

Seriously though, this all sounds very reasonable to me. I just can't quite imagine any man actually coming out with this and putting it all on the table. Would you? And if so, at what stage? To be honest also, even though it's good to know the score, I don't know that I wouldn't be a bit freaked out by it at the same time.
[/quote]

Hi Moon,
Not sure that is for public discussion except at a later stage - more just for me as a scorecard to make sure the basics are covered if/when I start dating again. I’m adding to it... must show compassion & be kind to waitresses, receptionists, plumbers, mechanics, etc.
65 (feel 50); Male

"Grief makes children of us all. Any intellectual difference is destroyed. The wisest know nothing."
- Emerson
TheMoon
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

Post by TheMoon »

Ivanhoe wrote: Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:32 pm Hi Moon,
Not sure that is for public discussion except at a later stage - more just for me as a scorecard to make sure the basics are covered if/when I start dating again. I’m adding to it... must show compassion & be kind to waitresses, receptionists, plumbers, mechanics, etc.
Apologies Ivanhoe.

But in fact, I've been also thinking myself about what sort of relationship I would want, if I ever get my act together - just not quite in so much detail as you!

It's interesting actually, in the depths of my LE all I wanted was to be married happily ever after, to LO of course, but there was also some feeling of regret that I have never been married, which was quite inexplicable really because I have actively resisted it - for all sorts of good and bad reasons. Now I'm pretty much through it though, I don't even know if I want a proper relationship. Maybe friends with benefits? I don't know. I'm thinking thoughts that I've never thought before :-?? .
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Re: Gender differences in relationships

Post by Ivanhoe »

Didn’t mean not for public discussion here - not for public discussion for prospective relationship partner until later. :))
Truly want public discussion about this topic for my own growth!
65 (feel 50); Male

"Grief makes children of us all. Any intellectual difference is destroyed. The wisest know nothing."
- Emerson
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