Men Hit, Women Hate

Once again I'm grateful I have a son.  A new study talks about how men and women compete differently (big duh), but what jumped out at me was how the ways women do it hit at what exactly makes you, you, and in that way, is more vicious and destructive.

"Threats and fear of isolation are powerful weapons in situations involving competition or aggression. Girls and women who fail to modify their behavior to fit the norm face social exclusion and loss of friendships rather than physical violence," reports.

Look at the girls committing suicide because of bullying, which usually comes back around to being dislodged from your peer group, along with the mean, hateful words that induce it.

"Indirect aggression uses minimal energy and usually provides the least risk of injury," the Web site adds. But its power to harm is still considerable -  gossip coming from many members of a group protects the majority but can be devastating to the individual - sometimes leading to depression or even suicide."  It can even lead to premature death in other ways, points out.

Now, don't get me wrong.  Men hitting each other isn't exactly ideal, either.  But it's less insidious and doesn't eat away at you like cancer, when people you previously thought were friends now treat you like, well, dirt.  

The Web site cites experts who say that women are more susceptible to peer pressure while men, to punishment.  "And while women have enhanced social skills, performing better in tests of mind reading and empathy, these leave them more vulnerable to subtle threats of rejection."

Quoting Anne Campbell and Paula Stockley, who did the study, "Compared to direct forms of aggression observed in other species, the use of social exclusion by human females is a relatively low-cost strategy."  For the ones doing the excluding, that is. 


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