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Do girls talk more about love/romantic attraction than boys?


Tagor
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I did a poll some while ago about the gender distribution here on the forum. Apparently, there are twice as many females here than males. This result was also reproduced by a study I saw on tumblr some while ago. Since then I've been wondering if this is something which inherent to aromanticism or if it is just a sampling bias.

 

Right now, my theory is that it is a sampling bias caused by women talking more often about love with their friends. If this is true, it might lead to an increased psychological strain because of not being able to contribute anything to the conversation and just realizing more easily that something is "off", resulting in a higher proportion of women actually investigating about aromanticism.

 

But I don't have any experience with this. I can just say for myself that I personally basically never talk about love with my friends (but this could also just be because all of my friends are nerds) and only looked into aromanticism because of curiosity as I didn't think it would matter much if I was aromantic.

 

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Yeah, I think you're probably right @Tagor. Also, women talk a lot more about their emotions than men in general, I reckon; romance being just one aspect of that. Conversely, a man might get the idea that he is unusually romantic and none of his friends are particularly romantic, as they hardly ever talk about their romantic feelings (even if they have them). Similarly, if he isn't particularly romantic himself, he may grow up thinking that he is perfectly normal in this regard i.e. think that his male friends don't talk about romantic feelings because they also don't have them (rather than because of make socialization and gendered expectations, which strikes me as a much more likely explanation). So it might take him far longer to come to the conclusion that he is unusual in some way and explore aromanticism.

 

I actually don't think men are inherently any less romantic than women. Actually, it wouldn't surprise me if they were inherently more romantic! And if women were instead evolutionarily biased to take more 'pragmatic' factors into consideration when selecting mates (with pregnancy being a short-term survival risk, it could be comparatively more important for women to (probably sub-consciously) take such  'un-romantic' factors as men's social status into account when selecting sexual partners?)

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Personnaly,  I don't talk about it with my friends - who are girls. The subject must have been on the table a couple of time only, in particular when all the girls had a crush on the French teacher (exept me of course).

But maybe we are an exception. In middle school and high school, I didn't have a lot of friends (let's be honnête it doesn't change) and the girls I befriended were shy. Then in collège we are older so we have different interests I guess.

 

If I base my opinion on what we saw in tv shows and movies (and we know that it influences or behavior to some extent) I say that girls talk more about romantic attraction, and boys about sexual attraction.

However, I don't think that it means that boys are less romantic; just that in society, girls are more expect to love and look for romantic things. Like we are suppose to love romantic stores and things like that, but for a boy it is almost a taboo. 

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2 hours ago, nonmerci said:

If I base my opinion on what we saw in tv shows and movies (and we know that it influences or behavior to some extent) I say that girls talk more about romantic attraction, and boys about sexual attraction.

I wonder if that means there are more guys in the ace forums?

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5 hours ago, Holmbo said:

I wonder if that means there are more guys in the ace forums?

Interesting... I guess @Tagor's 'theory' about how people discover marginalised identities would predict it.

 

I'm not familiar with the Aven site at all - anyone here know of any data on male:female membership ratio for it?

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i made this reply to a new male member wondering about the same thing:

 

"yeah, ok, i've been thinking about this.  idk how to phrase this but a possible reason for more women identifying as aro is that it's more...noticeable to us?  because of the stereotype that women are more romantic and men are more sexual, like, i think some guys just don't really think much of it.  and it seems tied to heteronormativity, so being heterosexual could definitely be a part of it.  (i know that made it hard for me to realize i was aro.  the whole "you just haven't found the right person" rhetoric is thrown around in an apparent effort to assure us we're 'normal' and we kind of believe it.)  anyway, the ratio of actual aro-spec men compared to women and non-binary people could be more even, maybe even in favour of men (idk, hypothetically) but it's like, 'oh, that's how it's supposed to be.'  is that off-base?  i mean, a lot of people don't recognize the difference between not prioritizing relationships/"serious" relationships (ugh, that's a whole other discussion) or not being one for overt romantically-coded expression, and actually not experiencing romantic attraction, i.e. being aro.  including many aros, at first.  sorry, that's a lot to introduce right away.  just a taste of the kind of discussions we get into here.  😄  welcome."

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On 9/24/2018 at 9:41 PM, NullVector said:

I actually don't think men are inherently any less romantic than women. Actually, it wouldn't surprise me if they were inherently more romantic!

One of the difficulties with addressing "are men or women more romantic?" is widely differing gender roles and expectations especially when it comes to heteros.
For women talking about romance seems to be a big part of these whereas for men there appears more emphasis on doing. e.g. grand romantic gestures.
 

On 9/26/2018 at 8:01 AM, aro_elise said:

i mean, a lot of people don't recognize the difference between not prioritizing relationships/"serious" relationships (ugh, that's a whole other discussion) 

Interestingly even amongst allos it turns out to be only around 15-20% of single people who are desperate to be coupled.

 

On 9/26/2018 at 8:01 AM, aro_elise said:

or not being one for overt romantically-coded expression, and actually not experiencing romantic attraction, i.e. being aro.  including many aros, at first. 

IME conflation between romantic attraction and interest in romantic coded things is common place on aro forums.

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On 9/26/2018 at 1:00 AM, November said:

According to the ace community census (https://asexualcensus.wordpress.com/) there are about 60% women and 13% men ...

There went that theory. Interesting that not as many men feel the need to talk about their asexuality either.
Maybe it's dependent on which forums men vs women prefer? For example there are probably more men on reddit, they might write about asexuality and aromanticism there.

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22 hours ago, Holmbo said:

There went that theory. Interesting that not as many men feel the need to talk about their asexuality either.
Maybe it's dependent on which forums men vs women prefer? For example there are probably more men on reddit, they might write about asexuality and aromanticism there.

 

Good point! I guess we need a survey where random people are asked instead of only users of one forum ....

 

... and I just noticed that in this survey (https://asexualcensus.files.wordpress.com/2017/10/2015_ace_census_summary_report.pdf on page 29) the participants were asked to which gender they were romantically attracted: 15.1% of the women, 17.4% of the men and 21.9% of the non-binary people replied that they were attracted to none ...

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  • 4 months later...

it might be interesting to know gender assigned at birth rather than gender orientation to discover if there is some early gender conditioning towards or against romance. I know that in one of the Scandinavian countries they now have kindergartens/early learning centres where the children are separated by gender and given oppositely-gender-stereotyped activities: girls learn to use hammers and boys do manicures on each other (there is a 'The Feed' episode on youtube about it somewhere if you are interested) 

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1 hour ago, Apathetic Echidna said:

it might be interesting to know gender assigned at birth rather than gender orientation to discover if there is some early gender conditioning towards or against romance. I know that in one of the Scandinavian countries they now have kindergartens/early learning centres where the children are separated by gender and given oppositely-gender-stereotyped activities: girls learn to use hammers and boys do manicures on each other (there is a 'The Feed' episode on youtube about it somewhere if you are interested) 

I'm not sure that this, since they are still separating the children by Gender Assigned At Birth.
A simpler option would be to have all of the children use hammers, do manicures, etc together.

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I feel like it might be just because its easier for women to identify as something that's not heteronormative. Men aren't as immediately marginalized by the systems trying to keep heteronormativity in place so it might not be as easy for them to admit. I read somewhere that woman are more likely to be bisexual than men, I think the likely culprit is the fact that women already have to deal with an oppressive institution so what's the harm, while men usually aren't allowed to be extra emotional and therefore won't take a step back and examine their own sexuality. There's just more at stake for men and less introspection culturally acceptable. 

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  • 1 month later...

I get the impression that girls talk more about love/romantic attraction than boys because they are more encouraged do that (or even from traditional gender expectations) and I agree with what NullVector said.

On 9/24/2018 at 1:41 PM, NullVector said:

I actually don't think men are inherently any less romantic than women.

 

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  • 2 years later...

Yeah I dunno not male but yeah the type of talk is certainly different seeming. I still feel put off sometimes about the overly sexual nature I kinda get the hint of lol

But I hear for men that it is more common to be attracted to body first personality later. 

I have certainly seen romantinc feelings from men and they do a lot of the romantic activities often in heterostuff at least. There is also the aspect of men hiding certain sorts of emotions or there being acceptable forms of expression.

There is a IDR quiz that predicts your "maleness " "femaleness" based on what you seek in a partner lol. Mine goes very um male in terms of that aspect only that is.

 

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