“…The only way to understand persons is by Catholic anthropology, united with indisputable evidence in science, including that of psychiatry and psychology.” This was said by our late Holy Father, John Paul II. He was asking that the scientific community direct its efforts towards making some profound advances in our understand of how we are created, male and female. And you know what? It has.
PET scans, brain wave,scans; amazing technology that allows doctors and researchers to see inside our brains and minds like never before have allowed these scientists to paint an incredibly clear and detailed picture of ‘maleness’ and ‘femaleness.’ This is great news for us – it means that there really is something behind this femininity thing, and that you know what, boys and girls really are different! This is not such great news for those individuals who, for whatever reason ( most deserving of our compassion), would like to believe that they can choose their own gender, or that they could have an operation and – poof – become the other sex. You see, what these scientists have discovered is that there is much more than just anatomy that makes us men or women, male or female. I am looking forward to discussing some of these findings here with you. I will do my best to support them with citations etc – so you know that I am not just making stuff up, and so you too can become confident in articulating some of the amazing scientific discoveries that help us understand who we are as women, and why we are the way we are!
Just one example: why is it that we can talk and talk and talk, and that we feel less stressed afterwards? Why is it that we can remember just what we were wearing, what the weather was, and where we were when we got our first kiss, or when we were dumped for the first time. Up until now the answer would just be, “because we are girls, it’s just what we do.” But thanks to some dedicated scientists and the foresight of a great and holy Pope, we can now say that the reason for this lies in the size of the Corpus callosum (think of a ‘bridge’ in the brain connects the two halves, or hemispheres, and which is responsible for sending information between the two.) We now are able to understand that this part of the brain is several times larger in females than in males. And the talk talk talk until you feel de-stressed? That is because the stress hormone, cortisol, is lowered in our brains by – you got it – verbalizing our stress!
Conversely, for men, this is exactly the opposite! For men, sitting quietly, ‘spacing out,’ idling flipping channels in a trance-like state…all these things LOWER the stress hormone in men. (Ah! Light-bulb moment!) Thats WHY he sits there staring at a screen, or at the wall, or whatever, and doesn’t appear to be engaged at all. He is not. He is de-stressing! And that’s how God made him! Now, here is the ironic part: do you know what will instantly send his cortisol through the roof? Yup, talk talk talk talk talk! (Ever wonder why guys don’t generally spend a ton of time talking to each other – even when they are close friends?) Does this mean I am advocating not talking to your man anymore? Nope. Absolutely not! One of the beautiful things about all this new research into our male and female-ness is that it allows us to understand each other better – and to know what the other needs. It can, in my opinion, lead to greater complementarity of the sexes!
Now, armed with this knowledge, perhaps you won’t get so upset the next time your hubby is ‘zoning’ in front of ESPN. And if he understand how your brain works, he will respect yourneed to talk and to verbalize. Now the two of you can work out how to best meet each other’s needs. “Honey, I know you need some time to zone out, but do you think that I could talk to you about my day (my problem, my shoes…whatever:-) ) in half an hour?
Presto! No fight over “You never spend time with me” or “You talk too much”
Hmmm..perhaps there is something to being scientifically female! We shall explore this some more…….later 🙂