The Differences In Emotional Expression Between Genders

1583 words - 6 pages

Combined research shows men and women vary little in experiencing emotion but contrast greatly in the expression of emotion. Psychologists have studied the reasons behind the differences through the years and there are still many unanswered questions but there are several well-accepted possible causes and combination of causes. Neuro science and the brain makeup is the first area of proven differences.
Medical researchers have been aware for a long time that the male and female brain is different in size. In 2001, researchers from Harvard found certain parts of the brain were differently sized in males and females; this may answer some of the questions about the difference in the male and female brain in regards to development and emotions. Researchers found the parts of the frontal lobe, responsible for problem solving and decision-making, and the limbic cortex, responsible for regulating emotions, were larger in women (Hoag, 2008). In men, the parietal cortex, which is involved in space perception, and the amygdale, which regulates sexual and social behavior, was larger (Hoag, 2008).
The Limbic portion of a female brain is much larger than that of a male brain. This portion of the brain regulates emotion. It empowers a woman to be able to bond easier, be more aware of their feelings, and allows them to express them with ease; however, with this also comes the amplified possibility of depression. These episodes are more prevalent during hormonal changes. It is documented that women are up to three times more likely to attempt suicide but not nearly as likely to succeed with their attempts as men are. This is thought to be because women usually choose less aggressive methods than men do. Women are more likely to attempt suicide by overdosing with medications as men are more likely to use guns or hangings. Another interesting finding,proves that men use only the right side of their brain for emotion and the left side of their brain for language. Women use both the left and the right sides of their brains for emotions. This seems to be yet another reason it is much easier for women to express their emotions (princess-ami).
Another area of the brain, which is different in men and women, is the Hypothalamus within the brain. The Hypothalamus is separated into two parts. The larger and most distinct portion of the hypothalamus is the preoptic area. This area is directly related to mating and sexual desires. The male preoptic area is 2.2 times larger and has twice as much cell density then females. The difference in the preoptic only becomes apparent after the age of four (Cahill, 2005).
Researchers and testing has proven over time, that some cognitive abilities between males and females change throughout infancy and adolescents. Girls generally perform and use their verbal skills much earlier than boys. Women do much better on exams such as SAT’s in the verbal areas where men excel in the mathematical arena. This finding in...

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