Gender Differences

Every person is a unique creation of God, but there are some traits common to most men that differ from the traits common to most women. For example …

  • Men … are task-oriented.
  • Women … are relationship-oriented.

A husband and wife get together at the end of a busy day. She begins to share how frustrated she feels trying to balance the demands of a part-time job, the discipline of the children, and the upkeep on the house. He wants to solve her problem and begins to develop a strategy and a schedule to permit her to work more efficiently—jumping into his time management mode. She, on the other hand, wants him just to hold her and to understand her frustration, not to solve her problem. She sees him as insensitive. He sees her as undisciplined. And an opportunity for close communication is lost.

  • Men use communication to solve problems: Two men walk out to their automobiles after a hard day’s work, and the vehicle of one will not start. They will discuss the clogged carburetor, the dead battery or the broken fuel line. Their conversation will revolve around their efforts to get the car started.
  • Women use conversation to build relationships: Two women in the same circumstances will be discussing how they feel about the whole situation and how they can further build their friendship.
  • For men, the primary component of communication is a sharing of information.
  • For women, the primary component of communication is a sharing of emotion.
  • A man says, “This is what is!”
  • A woman says, “This is how I feel about what is!”
  • Men want headlines.
  • Women want the fine print.
  • A man says, “Just the facts, Ma’am!”
  • A woman says, “Explain yourself!”
  • Men speak for report.
  • Women speak for rapport.
  • A man wants the details so that he can find a solution.
  • A woman wants connection so that her relationship can be enriched.

[print_link] [email_link] [this series is largely based on my reading of Hunt, J. (2008). Biblical Counseling Keys on Communication: The Heart of the Matter. Dallas, TX: Hope For The Heart]

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