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Men and Women Friendship


Menand Women Friendship

1)Describe men and women`s friendships. Note two differences and onesimilarity.

Oneof the differences between men and women friendship is that women aregenerally communicating more effectively than men are. Theyconcentrate on developing a solution that would match the needs ofeveryone in a group. When they have personal issues, they opt todiscuss the problems, and use non-verbal prompts such as empathy,tone, and emotion. On the contrary, men tend to be isolated and lesstalkative than women. They prefer doing a task together such aswatching TV or painting a house instead of sharing their emotions(Werking, 1997).

Anotherdifference is the fact that men’s friendships keep reducing, asthey get older – retire, stop attending recreational spots andother social places where they used to share common activities. Onthe contrary, women intensify on creating friendship, as they growolder. The intensity of making friends increases after they reachforty years (Greif, 2009).

However,men and women’s friendships are similar in that they help insuppressing depression and stress in both genders. Severalresearchers assert that all humans, despite their gender, makefriendships with intention of combating stress and depression (Greif,2009).

2)Discuss how gender is linked to friendship patterns include same-sexfriendship, cross-sex friendship, and gay/lesbian friendship.

Genderis a major determinant of friendship patterns. Researchers dividethree classes of friendships based on gender, including, cross-gender(cross-sex friendship), friendship between men (same-sex friendship)and friendship between women (Stein, 1986).

Cross-sexfriendships refer to platonic comradeship between persons of oppositegenders. This friendship is common among heterosexual women andwomen. Both men and women in these friendships report that they getlittle loyalty and help from each other (Stein, 1986).

Forthe same-sex relationships, both men and women have similarpreferences. Both genders report that same-sex friendships providehigher loyalty and assistance among members than the cross-sexoption. Although men claimed that this relationship closely resemblescross-sexual relationship, women differed in this opinion since theyasserted that same-sex relationships offer higher intimacy andacceptance, but less companionship than cross-cultural friendship(Rose, 1985).

Onthe other hand, gay/lesbian friendships are strong, and theseindividuals consider each other as family members. Both gay andlesbian friends report that their association offers emotional andfinancial support. For example, the friends borrow cash from eachother, as well as provide comfort to their colleagues when they areexperiencing stressful moments. The gay men reported that they feelcomfortable with lesbians than with straight women because they placetheir relationships at risk. Lesbians offer mutual companionship thatsuits gay men perfectly (Rose, 1985).

3)Choose one sex difference in friendship and describe what stage ofthe lifespan you would expect the largest difference and what stageof the lifespan you would expect the smallest difference. Be sure toexplain your reasoning.

Cross-sexdifference: This refers to friendship between persons of oppositegenders or a man and a woman. Cross-cultural friendships have thehighest differences among children aged between 5- 11 years is veryhigh. However, the differences start to reduce gradually amongfriends between12 to 35 years. Cross-cultural friends have the leastdifferences between 13 and 19 years. During this period, girls startproducing sexual hormones and their bodies attain full maturity.Similarly, the boys’ bodies are undergoing rapid physical andhormonal development (Perske, 1988). The two sexes feel a naturalattraction to each other during the puberty stage, which last up toabout nineteen years. Although the attraction between cross-culturalfriends remains even after puberty, its strength cannot match thebond during the adolescent. The biggest difference in cross-culturalfriendships is observed among infants and children below nine years.This is because the kids have not attained the maturity age whenopposite sexes start admiring each other romantically (Canary et al.,1997).


Rose,S.M. (1985). “Same- and cross-sex friendships and the psychology ofhomosociality.” SexRoles,Vol 12(1-2), Jan 1985, 63-74.

Perske,T. (1988). Circles of friends. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.

Stein,P.J. (1986). Men and their friendships. In R.A. Lewis &amp R.E. Salt(Eds.) Men in families, pp. 261-269. Newburry Park, CA: Sage.

Greif,G. L. (2009). Buddysystem: Understanding male friendships.Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Werking,K. (1997). We`rejust good friends: Women and men in nonromantic relationships.New York [u.a.: Guilford Press.

Canary,D. J., Emmers-Sommer, T. M., &amp Faulkner, S. (1997). Sexand gender differences in personal relationships.New York: Guilford Press.