Imposed Stress?

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Photo by MAJ Aaron Haney via familymwr on Flickr
Photo by MAJ Aaron Haney via familymwr on Flickr

Gutsy Writer, a mom of three boys, had an interesting comment regarding my last blog post.

I’m curious to hear what you think about the difference between boys/men and girls/women, towards stress. I think one of the things that attracts females to males is they are able to remain calm when women “freak” out. So in a way, that’s a nice thing for women. Imagine if men said, “I’m worried and stressed about life.” Most women worry about everything and if their husband also worried, that would double the stress. So what I’m trying to say is that perhaps boys/men, don’t worry as much as girls/women do, and we might be imposing our “stress” feelings on them.

Here’s what I think:

I think men and boys do worry. But as I stated in the last blog post, they have a tendency to bottle it up. Men and boys are much more inclined to ignore their stress — and that, I think, is a dangerous thing.

Women don’t necessarily want or need a man who freaks out when the going gets tough. But denying the stress isn’t exactly a useful response either. I want my boys to grow up knowing how to handle stressful situations. I want them to learn to recognize their stressful feelings, to view those feelings as a signal to act. Rather than avoiding stressful situations, I want my sons to learn how to proactively handle tough situations. Because like it or not, stress is going to be part of their lives. From money worries to health concernes, stress is unavoidable, I want my boys to prepared to handle it.

What do you think? Do you think women are imposing their version of stress on men? How do you think men and women handle stress differently?

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