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Differences Between Men and Women

 

Recognizing the different -- and equally valid -- ways that men and women think, value and behave can help resolve conflicts and misunderstandings and make for more fulfilling relationships. Below are some of thoughts that John Gray, who has written several books on differences between men and women, has developed on this.

 

DIFFERENCES IN MEN'S AND WOMEN'S STYLES

Men value power, competency, efficiency and achievement -- a man's sense of self is defined through his ability to achieve results.

Women value love, communication, beauty and relationships -- a woman's sense of self is defined by her feelings and the quality of her relationships.

 

Under stress, men retreat into their "caves" and silently think about what's bothering them.

Under stress, women feel an instinctive need to talk about what's bothering them.

 

In conversation, men mistakenly respond to their partner's sharing by proposing solutions and invalidating her feelings.

Women mistakenly think they are being helpful by offering their partners unsolicited advice and direction.

 

Men need intimacy, but also need to pull away at times (autonomy) -- while still loving her.

Women need to support this pulling away process and learn the best times for intimacy.

 

Men need to learn that acting as if they are always right will invalidate his partner's feelings.

When women send messages of disapproval, instead of disagreement, they will trigger a man's defenses

 

Men keep score by counting big gifts more than small ones.

Women keep score by counting all gifts equally, regardless of size.

 

Men like direct requests -- and if his partner isn't asking he assumes he is giving enough.

Women assume that love means not having to ask -- they intuitively feel the needs of their partner.

 

DIFFERENCES IN MEN'S AND WOMEN'S NEEDS

Men need to feel trusted -- for his partner to believe that he is doing the best and intends the best for her.

Women need to feel cared for -- when her man shows interest in her feelings and heartfelt concern for her well being.

 

Men need to feel that they are accepted the way they are.

Women need to feel heard and understood.

 

Men need to feel appreciated for their efforts and contributions.

Women need to feel respected -- to have her rights, wishes and needs acknowledged.

 

Men need to be admired -- to feel his partner is pleased with his unique characteristics and talents.

Women need to feel that her partner is devoted to her and that he thinks she is special.

 

Men need to feel that they are their woman's hero.

Women need to be able to feel the way they do and have her partner not contradict or argue with her feelings.

 

Men need encouragement -- to have his partner express her trust, confidence, approval and admiration of him.

Women need reassurance -- repeated demonstrations of his caring, respect, validation and devotion.