Are Stereotypes About Men and Women True?

Are Stereotypes About Men and Women True?

After reading this post about common stereotypes for American states, I chose to do a similar Google search for stereotypes of men and women.

Without further ado, here’s what happened when I searched “why are men so…” and “why are women so…”

Why are men so….

mean
stubborn
hot
pathetic
cranky
stupid when it comes to women
shallow
lazy
jealous
insecure

Stereotypes exist for a reason. The only problem is when we assume they’re ALWAYS true.

Yep, that sounds about right.

Why are women so…

emotional
crazy
cold
complicated
stuck up
sensitive
weird
self-centered
mean to men
illogical

No comment. 🙂

Stereotypes exist for a reason. The only problem is when we assume they’re ALWAYS true.

Come to think of it, maybe the key to relationships is as simple as finding a partner who doesn’t embody the worst stereotypes.

What do YOU think?

Join our conversation (58 Comments).
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Comments:

  1. 1
    Selena

    I think the people who see stereotypes are those who are most likely choosing people with the same traits over and over. Possibly because they have another trait, like “hotness” that goes along with it. 😉

  2. 2
    Ellen

    Boy, this post is gonna get a lot of comments!

    The best advice a college bf gave me was: See people first as individuals, not their gender.  That said, I generally find men more alike (amongst themselves) than women. To me there are so many types of women that generalizing is ridiculous imo. For one thing, a lot of women are on overdrive in order to compete successfully with men in school, the workplace, etc. so are becoming more masculine in their mien.

    Insecure men, for the most part, tend to (consciously anyway) avoid or neglect their feminine side.

    In general I find men less complicated than women, true. 

    The only real stereotype I see consistently with men is their shallowness and lack of sentimentality about sex, love unless it’s their momma or daddy or something. Proof? Men are much more likely to replace a woman quickly- even a woman who has been important to them their entire lives- with the first suitable replacement that comes along (and often not that suitable or acceptable), rather than be alone. I see this consistently with widowers everywhere. It sickens me frankly. I mean, where is the loyalty? Can’t they observe a suitable period of mourning even? I just will never, ever understand it or accept it.      

  3. 3
    Heather

    Actually Selena, that makes alot of sense!

    I’ve dated a few abusive guys in the past, and it got to where I would think, good god, why are men so damn MEAN???  Is that just part of their genetic code, to treat women like crap and hurt them?

    But once I did some work on myself, I came to learn that I CAN stand up for myself and set boundaries, and not let guys walk all over me, simply for being nice. 

    Having said that, where’s the stereotype about guys tuning us out while they watch TV? 😛  I swear, there are times I could probably tell my guy that I’m sleeping with an alien and he might not even bat an eyelash, then look at me five minutes later and go, “Huh?”

  4. 4
    Selena

    That’s called “selective deafness” Heather. I’m laughing, because that may actually be male trait: I remember my son had it as a little boy! 🙂

  5. 5
    Fiona

    OK I’m sensitive and I’m emotional and if I get hurt I can certainly be upset (which is maybe manspeak for crazy). On the flip side I am caring, loyal, and hate hurting people. I can only hope for some redemption…. 

  6. 6
    Joe

    @ Ellen: how does it feel if I turn it around and say women are overly sentimental about sex, love?

  7. 7
    Rachael

    Lol heather! I know what you mean! Cause i’ve been with those guys…Luckily my current doesn’t do that. He’ll even allow me to engage him (however briefly) while watching football! Amazing! I find it mind boggling though that he can be looking RIGHT into my eyes, at full attention (speaking a complete sentance even) and still catch something, turn around and yell “awww COME ON!” at the tv. Like…How the eff did you even see that? lol Fascinating.

  8. 8
    Ruby

    I think it’s still more acceptable for women to embody masculine traits than the other way around. It’s easy enough to ascribe the attributes EMK listed for men, as being female traits as well. But when you try to say that men are illogical, emotional, or sensitive, well, them’s fightin’ words! There is still an expectation that men should be strong and rational. The truth is, I’ve known some pretty sensitive, emotional men, as much so as any woman. And what is so bad about being sensitive or emotional, as long as one isn’t overly so?

  9. 9
    Rachael

    Ellen

    Maybe it is therapeutic for those men to fill that hole? Even if the new woman doesn’t compare to the ex, or the deceased. I personallt wouldn’t look at this behavior as insulting, or disrespectful to the woman. I see it as rather sad and kind of endearing. As if to say “I just can’t take it being alone, and without her.”. Maybe the new woman is a replacement. But men have different ways of coping with pain. 

  10. 10
    Ellen

    PS Sorry for the second post, but men are much less likely to want to learn from women than the other way around. It’s like unconsciously we get tied up with “Mom” in some way and this stubbornness kicks in.  A kind of “no woman is going to tell me what to do”.

    I’ve been married twice: Once for 7 years, once for 25 and in all that time I doubt my husbands actively or willingly tried to learn from me. And listen, I’ve got plenty to share, offer. I always got the feeling I was expected to learn from them, listen to them though. So I did. Know it sounds a bit insipid, but from my first husband I learned to explore fiction in a big way and more profoundly, from my second to get tougher emotionally …..

    So that has also frustrated me. I mean, imagine being with someone 25 years and in all that time you can’t for the life of you see how they have learned lesson one from you. Nothing is said anyway to indicate this, nothing openly acknowledged. To me it is a type of major emotional withholding.

    What do others have to say on this subject? ‘Cause I would love to find out if I am correct in my assumption or not gals/guys.   

  11. 11
    Rachael

    I’d really like a man’s perspective on the “replacement” behavior! I’d love to fully understand it!

  12. 12
    Heather

    @ Selena and Rachael,

    I tried that experiment once, with my ex husband.  He was playing another one of his online games (he was addicted to gaming, among other things), and I was talking to him.  I either got no response, yelled at for interrupting his serious “quest” (yeah pal I have your “quest” right here, LOL), or an absent-minded “uh huh”.  So I said hey hon, I have some news, I’m pregnant.  And with an alien baby, too!  All I heard a few seonds later was, “Uh huh.”

    It really must be selective deafness.  It drives me batty sometimes!

  13. 13
    DinaStrange

    Of course, we don’t believe in stereotypes…only watch when you say word “threesome” the reaction of men and women 🙂

  14. 14
    Michael17

    Well, this is my take.
     
    Men go for femininity. Which means that we will go for crazy emotional woman (i.e., a woman with high femininity) over the more logical easy-going “Plain-Jane” (a woman who is less in touch with her femininity). And then when the woman we chose exhibits her illogical, crazy ways, complain about how nuts women are, all the while the “Plain-Jane” was passed up or made “one of the guys” is actually quite easy to get along with.
     
    Similarly, women go for masculinity. Which means that many women will go for a man’s man (a guy with high masculinity) over the “Nice Guy” (a guy who is less in touch with his masculinity). And then when the man you chose exhibits his brutish insensitive ways, complain about how men are jerks and scumbags, all the while the “Nice Guy” that was passed up or Friend-Zoned actually has none of those hard-to-get-along-with tendencies. 
     
    So both genders end up complaining about the other, with the “Plain-Janes” and the “Nice-Guys” both complaining about how they are what the other gender says they want but they never get picked.

  15. 15
    Ruby

    Michael17 #14
     
    Well, this is totally counter to what EMK advises when he says that men like easy-going women. Since when is easy-going “plain”, and crazy is feminine and attractive? I think you are saying that men are willing to overlook a woman who’s unstable, if she’s hot enough.
     
    My boyfriend is very masculine, but he has an emotional, caring, sensitive side, too. For me, it’s the best of both worlds. He IS a nice guy, which is good, because I’m not interested in dating jerks.

  16. 16
    Michael17

    Ruby #15:
     
    Good point. This is what I meant (and forgive my poor wording above): A man will go for a woman who is in touch with her femininity EVEN IF it means we have to put up with a lot of crazy, INSTEAD OF a woman who is not in touch with her femininity, even if she is perfectly sane and logical. That said, a woman who is having crying jags and throwing fits all the time gets old VERY VERY fast to most men. Also, we do tend to run from a woman who is initiating too many “where is this going” talks or is talking about her ticking biological clock.
     
    A woman who is mature and easy-going, AND who brings her share of feminine energy, with even a little bit of girly emotional craziness, is what we want. At the end of the day we need to know you’re a girl. If you’re more logical or less emotional than we are, then that could be a problem. So we really want a mix, a balance.
     
    Just as I’m sure you love both your boyfriend’s uber-masculine side AND his emotional sensitive caring side too.
     
     
     

  17. 17
    Michael17

    And how this relates to this topic at hand: We often settle for our list of attributes being only partially filled. And we as men will end up going for a feminine woman who is “too crazy” (and we end up leaving her because we can’t take it anymore) and then biatch about your gender. What we are really looking for in the end is a woman who is in touch with her femininity, who is easy-going and mature, whom we think is hot, and who is attracted to us back. It’s hard for us to find indeed.

  18. 18
    Fiona

    I am confused by what men deem to be ‘crazy’. If someone treats me badly I am going to be upset. Far from inferring a mental illness, I would say this is understandable.

  19. 19
    JB

    @Ellen#2 I see this consistently with widowers everywhere. It sickens me frankly. I mean, where is the loyalty? Can’t they observe a suitable period of mourning even? I just will never, ever understand it or accept it.”     

    It goes both ways Ellen I was winked at on Match last week by a 52 yr.old widow and after I got her email address and did a little digging low and behold her husband died in April 2012 and his pic is still on her Facebook page. I couldn’t believe it!

  20. 20
    Michael17

    Ellen #2, I wonder if it is your people-picker. See, the guys you are going for, or seem to have been going for, represent only a very partial subset of men out there. There are a lot of nice guys out there…. They don’t always make the strongest first impression that hooks the women in though.

    My point is that you need to take some responsibility for what has been happening to you when it comes to dating. We all do.

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