Genderlect Theory – Deborah Tannen What Women Want Definition: This theory is about how men and women communicate differently and what we can do to bridge the gap between the two communication styles. What seperates men from women – communication wise atleast. Let’s find out… The age old question of what women want has been on the minds of men (and occasionally women) such as yourselves since the beginning of time. Heck, they even made a movie out of it! I’m sure that even cavemen were wondering what their women were thinking as they clubbed them over the head. What women want when they communicate is a sense of understanding and community. What Men Want Who knows?! Men say that women are confusing, women say that men are confusing. The truth is we all make sense, we just don’t make sense to the other sex. When men communicate they are looking for status and independence. A source I used gave the example of a scene from the TV show Friends. In this clip Rachel has to go to the doctor to get her eye examined. The whole time she’s there Rachel closes her eyes so he can’t see them.
The docotr patiently tries a few times before surrendering. He instead writes her a prescription and sends her away. All the doctor (who was a man) wanted was for Rachel to be brave and get it over and done with. Rachel wanted the doctor to reassure her that it was going to be alright and it wasn’t going to hurt. Men prefer to go straight to the point… …while women need to be coddled in communication occasionally. The reason for the differences might be something as simple as how our brains react to people’s vocal waves. A teacher once told me that when men hear a woman’s voice they immediatly (yet subconsciously) interpret it as being more emotional. Is that true?! Do women need to be coddled? According to a recent study on male doctors communicating with female patients vs. male patients, male doctor’s will tend to interrupt, change subjects in the middle of another, and call female patients “honey” and “sweetie”. Obviously not every woman wants to be coddled but do we provoke it in men? Perhaps the idea that men and woman understanding eachother will never actually come true. Maybe it’s all subconscious? Either way I think that both sexes can at least try to put an effort forth to better understand that opposite sex instead of writing it off at the first sign of trouble. If all else fails, I say we just agree to disagree.