Valentine's Day 2019: The very different words men and women use to talk about love

If you sometimes feel men and women speak a different language, you might be closer to the truth than you think.

At least when it comes to love.

New York Timesjournalists examined four years of love essays submitted to the paper, taking note of the author's gender.

It would appear that stereotypes hold true when men and women write about love.

Men are more likely to write about actions - such as "bomb", "hit" and "battle" - and women to talk about feelings - such as "agony", "hurt" and "resentment".

Studies have backed this up, showing females will talk more about feelings but are not taught to express anger, while boys are widely taught to express anger and not to cry.

Men and women even talk about family differently.

Men were more likely to use words such as 'father', 'dad' and 'son', while women used 'mother', 'mom' and 'daughter'. And it was checked that writers were referring to their family most of the time, not themselves.

Similarly, studies suggest parents often feel closer to children of the same sex - most likely because they spend more time with them.

But Robin Lakoff, professor emeritus of linguistics at the University of California, told the New York Times that attitudes were changing:

Back in the 50s, men could show anger, rivalry and hostility, so they could swear.

Women could show fear, sorrow and love, and so they could cry.

But she said today it's a different story:

It’s probably best to say we are somewhat confused about gender roles and stereotypes.

HT New York Times

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