Misunderstanding Men and Women Since the beginning of biological time, males and females have had noticeable and unnoticeable differences. These differences have caused conflicts, which have endured time and are still a part of our modern everyday lives. However, the discord has become more defined than what is characterized as a woman and a man. In order to attempt accordance between the sexes, it is essential that we educated ourselves in the true meanings of men, women, masculinity, femininity and the power aspects involved. Before going into detail on the many differences between being a man and a woman, one must carefully examine the proper definitions of masculinity and femininity.
These terms are common “falsely understood” words that no one has taken the time to define yet everyone uses on a daily basis. All human beings are classified by their biological and psychological sex. A biological man is a person born with the male genitalia, as a biological woman is a person born with the female genitalia. A biological male person along with a biological female person are needed to reach the goal of biological sexuality: procreation. On the other hand, a psychologically male person is a person that believes he or she is a male and vice versa for a psychologically female person. Psychological sexuality is about the personality traits that distinguish many men and women.
For example, women are often more intuitive than men. Men often are better at spatial relationships than women. These two are needed for the psychological sexuality goal: making a love relationship. Femininity can be defined by such feminine traits as being soft, nurturing, intuitive, accepting and empathetic. Being stoic, analytical and public are traits generally associated with masculinity. Hence, from the previous definitions we can say that a “man” is a psychologically masculine person. He can be either biologically feminine or masculine. A “woman” is a psychologically feminine person.
She can be either biologically masculine or feminine. A greatly noticeable difference between men and women is the power aspects of masculinity and femininity. Men seem most comfortable in situations where the power structure and its laws are clear to them. Competition is another trait of the masculine personality. He competes in order to gain control since, according to him, the strongest and most dominant person leads and makes all the important decisions. When working in groups with other men, he believes that the absence of rules will lead to the most aggressive person, rather than the best leader, gaining control of the group.
When working with other women, however, he usually wants to know whether a biological female wants to be treated like a man or like a woman. A power aspect of the feminine power style or femininity is cooperation. When a woman cooperates she is submitting to the will of the other person in the expectation that the other person will take her needs and wants into consideration. When women cooperate with each other they are submitting to the combined will of the two people in the relationship (which includes her, of course, so she has a say in the decision-making process.) During group work, women have consensus decision-making. Each person takes responsibility for making sure that everything is shared equally. Women are capable of working well together without rules or establishing a hierarchy.
When working with men, a womans femininity works against her, because the business world operates by masculine principles: competition constrained by rules. Through the years, science has developed models for the relationships between men and women, more specifically, the power and love aspects of relationships. Men and women in love relationships have complementary power traits that are a large part of what attracts women to men and men to women. Love relationships bring out the power aspects of a mans masculinity and a womans femininity. A woman wants her man to take responsibility for her and he can best show his love for her by accepting this responsibility. Likewise, a man wants to take responsibility for his woman and she demonstrates her love by giving him this responsibility. The first relationship model is known to psychologists as the modern model.
It encapsulates the idea of power sharing. Since the 1970s the politically correct arrangement of power in a marriage has been equal power sharing: power must be shared equally between the two partners. That is to say that all decisions are made by both people and neither has ultimate authority. However, this model gives way to power struggles since there is no clear leader. The couple has not chosen a tiebreaker or decided on any other way to handle deadlock. Trying to live by the modern model tends to frustrate a man. He feels disrespected and believes that his masculinity is not valued and is inadequate. This leads to downfalls on his self-esteem and withdraws and/or becomes abusive.
The woman must then pick up each responsibility he has dropped and begins to nag and become resentful, which in turn results in even more withdrawal. This model is not perfect. It tends to de-sexualize both participants by repressing their psychological sexuality. If the couple tries to make decisions the way two women make decisions, the mans masculinity will become a problem; he must become good at voluntary cooperation and at sharing power. If they try to resolve problems like two men, the womans femininity will get her nowhere; she must become competitive and aggressive.
The masculine-feminine model is based on the differences between men and women. It recognizes the difference between what a man wants from a woman and vice versa. The man makes it possible for the woman to express her femininity by taking responsibility for her. He makes the major decisions, after consulting with the woman, provides basic necessities food, clothing, shelter and creates rules for the family. The woman makes it possible for the man to express his masculinity by giving him the authority to carry out his responsibility for her.
This model also has its downside. It is generally viewed as a dominant male submissive female model where the woman is being taken advantage of and the man is a controlling person. In short, this model is confused with abusive relationships. Unfortunately, educating a whole population on the correct definitions of men and women is an arduous if not impossible task. Hence, there will always exist problems and conflicts between the sexes due to misinterpretation and misunderstanding between each other. It is imperative to all to comprehend that men and women are not only physically different, but psychologically different as well. And, the encapsulation of all these differences unavoidably leads to distinct power aspects and struggles.