Venus vs. Mars: Stereotypes, Double Standards, Relationships

Last week, I went to see the new Karate Kid movie with a bunch of friends at the dollar theater. Afterward, we all went to Denny’s to get our eat on (a popular pastime here in Provo). It was me, my roommates, another guy that we all knew from our freshman year, and 6 girls that we’ve met in recent weeks. We started talking to one of the girls about her ex-boyfriend whom she had broken up with 2 weeks earlier. She told us that he was manipulative, uncaring, and only really cared about getting booty. Then the other five girls chimed in on how all guys ever care about is getting action and executing the “Provo Push” to the fullest. If you don’t know what that means, text your buddy at BYU.

As you can imagine, as guys, we stuck up for ourselves. It’s irritating when girls make generalizations that, “all guys are the same” and all we’re after is a make out. But to be honest, as I looked at the guys I was with, all 5 of us were guilty (at least once), of what we were being accused of. But then I looked around again and started thinking about each of our relationship histories. Literally each of us has fallen victim to being manipulated, hurt, and had our worlds turned upside down in the worst way possible by some vindictive and treacherous she-wolf. Seriously, each of us has had a relationship that has ended horribly and none of us have been the same since. Then we reminisced about them and how amazing it is how one girl (varying from each relationship) has had such power over us and changed how we view relationships and basically how we operate in our daily routines.

I still consider myself a good guy. I’m caring. I try to be sensitive. I try to be romantic, to say the right things, and to be “cute” when courting. But to an extent, some of it has been lost. It’s been lost by all 5 of us at that Denny’s table. There’s a difference between getting hurt and being heartbroken. Heartbroken is when you get dumped by a girl you think you were seriously considering to one day become you eternal companion. Being hurt is when you were in a relationship and the girl cheated on you, lied to you, or manipulated you. I’ve been manipulated, lied to, and cheated on. All 5 of us had at least one of those…and it’s not a good thing, we all know that. But when those relationships end, it’s not the end. I still have dreams about my ex. I still hear music or smell a perfume that makes me stop dead in my tracks and wonder what she’s doing right now.

Now, guys and girls have completely different ways of dealing with hurt. Guys, if they’ve been hurt bad enough, will slightly detach themselves emotionally for many relationships or potential future relationships to come.  They talk openly about what awful people their ex’s are. That, in some way, explains why guys are more apt than girls to go after one night stands; because we’ve been hurt and a bit of that caring has been taken away from us. Whether sub-conciously or not, we’ve been messed up and we don’t go through the motions and efforts of courting like perhaps we should. Then, because we’ve been hurt, we don’t care as much how we treat girls.

Girls on the other hand, if they get hurt, instantly talk to their girlfriends about their emotions and then receive extremely caring advice. Tears are shed. But I feel they handle it more maturely. They learn lessons about how to approach future relationships and after therapy sessions with their friends, cautiously, but effectively approach the next prospect.

I realize this varies but I had this chat with my friend, Allyson, and her roommates last night so I’m speaking with credibility from both sides of the spectrum. She echoed my sentiments and said that men don’t share emotional drama with their friends the way women do. She feels men sit back and hate and that statistically it takes men longer to formulate new relationships. It’s still irritating when girls put themselves out there though, when they barely know a guy by watching a movie at midnight, and get kissed only to get all butt hurt when nothing becomes of it. If you put yourself in that position time and time again, stop acting like victims and complaining when nothing becomes of it. He’s probably looking for more of a challenge anyways. And guys, if you’ve been hanging out or dating a girl for more than two weeks, kiss her only if you mean it. Yeah, we’re in our early and mid 20’s and have been asked to maintain our virtue to the fullest, so a make out from time to time feels good. But not when it decimates a girls confidence by never talking to her or even looking at her the night after.

It got me thinking though. There are a ton of double standards, stereotypes, and differences among guys and girls other than the ones I’ve listed in this post… especially when it comes to relationships, communication, perspectives etc.

What do you think?

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9 Responses to Venus vs. Mars: Stereotypes, Double Standards, Relationships

  1. I agree on the differences. I think that guys take longer to get over those kinds of things, not because we’re secretly more sensitive or anything, but because, like you said, we don’t talk about it with our buddies. When we get hurt/heart-broken, we just say how she sucked so bad, but we don’t really talk about it, we brood, by ourselves.

  2. Ashley says:

    I think members of the Church make dating a lot more complicated than it has to be. Sure, there will always be hiccups in any (pre)relationship, but we tend to over-analyze everything. If it works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.

    Call me! 😉

  3. I just wanted to say I hate the phrase “provo push.”

    Also, I’m probably like a guy in that I sit back and hate. I don’t throw myself out there. Then again, that pretty much describes my whole personality when it comes to dating.

  4. Justagirl says:

    I really disagree with this post. When you boil it all down you are saying that guys are victims so we should accept behaviors like one night make outs and a lack of respect–but that if we make out with a guy and expect a call from him we have set ourselves for disappointment if he doesn’t call.

    How about accepting responsibility? Yeah guys, maybe a girl lied to you–guys do that to girls all the time! Get over it!! Maybe girls do have others they can talk to — but guys can and do talk to other girls and have therapy sessions all the time.

    Honestly I am tired of guys justifying their behavior by rationalizing it. If you aren’t ready to be with someone-control yourself! Girls have the same urges guys do and somehow we manage to control them, most of the time.

    • Hi Justagirl,

      I think you may have taken the post slightly out of context. I talked with Jacob after he posted this and his intention was to share the male perspective on dealing with hurt and hearbreak. I’m sure you can appreciate the male perspective, even if he didn’t share every possible thing about both sides of the situation. I don’t think he is rationalizing the way men can lie or hurt women, or supporting a one night stand, but simply sharing that he is human. His criticism is that of girls who make out with a guy without even dating them and then expect that to form a relationship. Relationships aren’t built on making out, those are called “friends with benefits” or “booty calls” and one can’t honestly expect a guy to build a real relationship on that basis.

      He did give females a lot of credit when he said that he thinks girls are more mature in handling failed relationships and have a better support system.

      • Jacob @ TheSinglesWard says:

        did you read the post carefully justagirl? I didnt justify or rationalize anything. I gave girls credit for handling things much better than we guys do. We act irresponsible at times because we’re not as good as you guys at handling being hurt.

  5. Mary Porteus says:

    Uncovered your webblog via google the other day and absolutely enjoy it. Keep up the truly great work.

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