Why are most men the same man… just in different vessels?
This question was sent to me by a friend as a joke, which is exactly why I’m printing it here.
There is that perception that “men” are one way, and “women” are another. Most people focus almost exclusively on these stereotypes and find evidence to support them.
So, if we listen to conventional wisdom, what do we know about men? Well…
Men are liars
Men are fools
Men are dangerous
Men are idiots
Men are pigs
You know how I got these nuggets of wisdom about men?
Google. IMDB. Amazon.
Look around. You’ll see.
These are concepts — book titles, even – that only go to reinforce our basest stereotypes. And the danger of stereotypes is not that they’re false — but rather in believing that they’re always true.
And if such stereotypes are to be roundly believed, what do they tell us about men?
Men cannot be trusted.
Men are lazy and can’t multi-task
Men are prone to violence
Men are likely to be unfaithful
Men don’t have feelings and don’t express themselves
Men want sex all the time
Men treat women poorly
If you’re a woman, you have probably met a man who was an uncommunicative, sex-obsessed liar.
But I’m wondering if you’ve ever met a man who:
Treated you extremely well
Consistently told you how he felt
Wasn’t as into sex as you were
Never cheated on you
Kept his word when he made a promise
Led a balanced life with work, friends, and cultural interests
I’m guessing you have.
And let’s not forget women’s stereotypes, also found in Google:
Women are evil…
Women are stupid
Women are angry
Women are talkative
Women are crazy
Women are overly sensitive
Right off the bat, I would say that my girlfriend disproves all of these things — except for the talkative one.
Then again, the New York Times just reported this nugget from Science Magazine, which observes that men and women are equally talkative.
The point isn’t that men aren’t into sex or that women aren’t emotional. Many are. Instead, it’s that when you’re dating, you should be dealing with individuals, not stereotypes.
And unless you want to be grouped together with all the others who embody the worst of your gender, you may want to stop treating the opposite sex as a monolithic series of tired clichés.