Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Because men fake caring

When you care about another person, its means you apply empathy. You put yourself in their position and you give that some thought. If you are a very good carer, you will wonder how you would react in such a situation.  And if you are a great, amazing carer, you will examine the person you are empathizing with and see if you can work out why THEY might be reacting the way they are.

Mythology implies women can do this better, easily, and with more pleasure than men. However, like the myth that states they don't feel pain as much as men do (don't you love that one? It's to get around being sympathetic about the pain of child-birth) it can't be scientifically proven because it simply isn't true.  The reason women show more empathy is they've been taught how to  put themselves aside for someone else every now and then.

Men can't understand this idea. Actually, let me re-phrase that. They certainly understand the idea well enough when empathy is NOT being shown to them. Men think that caring is about going through the motions. Or worse, offering half-baked, half-assed "solutions" till the miserable person is so offended at the trite offerings they want the man to go away. At which point he gets to shrug his shoulders, claim he tried and carry on about mens inability to empathise.

Actually, men are taught that showing too much concern for another person (even your child) is to lose a position of superiority. Exactly what superiority they're fighting for, is not clear.  What race they're running when they can't feel for a six-year-old boy who is sick from a cold is not clear.  All that is clear is that if HE catches a cold (read flu - men never catch colds) then everyone else in the household must force the world to turn in the other direction to a) feel sorry for him and b) find some way for him to get better - but only after his mother finds out and comes over with soup.

It is true that too much empathy can make you avoid looking after yourself (enter the woman's problem) however, for the most part, you're not going to "lose" if you just put yourself to one side on rare occasions and think about how it is for someone worse off than you.

In romance novels the men are very empathic. At least they are when they are "the Hero". Sometimes the men have to be taught about this by their women, however it is always a gratefully received lesson once learnt and it is always extremely sexy to a woman when he does finally get it.

No comments:

Post a Comment