Boys Don’t Cry and Other Lies
Posted on May 14, 2015
Asked on Quora:
"Why does ladies become more emotional than men?"
Answer by Tamra Coveau:
I disagree with your premise. In my experience, men are just as emotional as women and display the full range of emotions that women are capable of showing. In fact, there are numerous cultural studies that link gender stereotypes with emotional behavior. A culture may discourage men and women from presenting certain emotions to perpetuate gender biased ideals that have become social norms. In other words, people will conform to the situation in order to be accepted socially within a culture.
These change from culture to culture and over time. Women are often taught to repress anger, pride, disgust or fear. Men are often taught to hide fear, hurt, vulnerability or caring. However, there are cultures that embrace the fact that all people have and can express any of these emotions, but at certain times or places. There are no female or male emotions. Society puts restrictions on what is natural human emotional behavior to perpetuate beliefs about what is normal and good in that particular cultural world-view.
People all have emotions, but individually there are factors and environments that affect one’s emotional states. Emotions are never wrong, but they are not always rational. Sometimes we feel things based on reality as we perceive it in that moment, and sometimes based on a remembering of past realities or a prediction/fear/hope of future realities.
Feelings have physical connections to our biological chemistry and can trigger biological changes. Likewise, there are physical factors that affect our feelings.
The media often propagates certain gender myths and stereotypes that make it appear that men and women differ greatly in the realm of emotions. Expression of feelings in general may be more permissible in cultures that value equality and freedom of speech. Cultures that deny freedom of speech and gender equality, promote gender and other stereotypes to control individuality and maintain power structures.