The Break Up Men Vs Women Philosophy Essay

In our society relationships are an essential part of the way that our lives function. Whether they are romantic or just friendly, they affect everyone in every country, on every continent! Although men and women treat relationships differently, and have different emotions along the way, in this paper I do not want to discuss the good parts of being “in love”, I want to discuss the raw emotions of the dark side of relationships, the break-up. I have always been interested in romantic relationships and especially break-ups because no matter whether you are thirteen or sixty-five, breaking up with someone you care for or even don’t care for is always going to be a difficult and sometimes life changing event. The question is who copes better with breaking up, men or women? Does it vary depending on whether or not you are the one being broken up with versus the one who is initiating the break-up? What about if it is considered a “mutual” break-up? All of these questions can be answered through movies, research, and my own personal experiences which give insight to the way men and women deal with the hard emotions of losing an intimate relationship. In my own personal opinion I believe men overall cope with break-ups better in the beginning, but I am unsure when it comes to the lasting emotions that men and women feel after the end of a relationship. Mizikar, 2

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The first thing I want to discuss is the way boys are treated growing up and how different it is than the way girls are treated. I read a lot about boys and the things they learn while growing up and being tough is one of the main words used in both my textbook, Interpersonal Communication: The Whole Story and The Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. This toughness is instilled in them for the rest of their lives so it is no surprise that men don’t wear their emotions on their sleeves. I feel that this idea of being tough has a huge effect on the way men treat relationships and the break-ups that follow. Although on the outside it may seem that this manly display of nothing is the way that a man really feels, but it is unfair to believe that they don’t get upset at all. Research conducted by Men’s Health Magazine shows that men often times experience more depression or anxiety than women do after experiencing a break-up. I think that this is due the fact that men often times try to hide their sadness from their peers and try not to give off any display of emotion about the situation, while women will often cry and talk to at least a few different people about it.

In my own life I have seen many examples of men hiding their true emotions, one example that sticks with me the most is from one of my guy friends who just recently split up with his wife of a year and a half. He told me a few weeks ago that they were probably not going to make it. It surprised me when he said this because he was not showing any sort of negative emotion while explain the situation to me. I brought this up to him and explained that to me it didn’t even seem like he cared. He responded with, “I will never show anyone that I am upset, not even my wife. I can go home and cry for an hour all by myself, but when I’m at work or out with my friends I just can’t let myself cry or be sad”. I don’t think that this is a good way of dealing with something as extreme as the end of an important relationship. Another reason men could possibly have a harder time dealing with this is because often times they don’t have as big Mizikar, 3

of an emotional support group as women do. Girls can call a friend they haven’t talked to in four years crying, and their old friend would understand. Men on the other hand don’t always have that luxury which leads me to believe that an intimate, romantic relationship is often times more important in a man’s life than he may think.

One movie that relates to my topic extremely well is The Break-up. Jennifer Aniston plays a character named Brooke opposite Vince Vaughn who plays Gary, in a comedy about a routine break-up. The only difference is the fact that neither one wants to give up their luxury apartment. It goes through the fight, and then through both sexes trying to make the other one move out. Gary has a party with many women, trying to make Brooke jealous and they go back and forth throughout the movie trying to make the other one mad or jealous. The part that I think relates the most to my paper is towards the end of the movie when Brooke is in their bedroom crying and Gary walks in to see what is wrong. Afterwards you see Gary at the bar with his friend talking to him without much emotion about the situation. This shows how women are more likely to cry and be upset, while men don’t let the impact of realizing the relationship is over affect them that way. At first when I watched this movie it made me mad at the end because they didn’t get back together, but after thinking about it I realized that sometimes it’s just better for the people involved to move on with their lives. I like the message in this movie and it really relates well to the topic I am discussing.

The situation of a break-up has a tremendous effect on who handles it better. I would say there are two types of obvious break-ups, mutual and one sided. There are thousands of reasons for a mutual break-up, and a lot of times it is not because someone cheated in the relationship. Some people just aren’t meant to be together and it is a lot harder to break apart from each other without a definitive reason such as cheating or because you are fighting all the time. I think the Mizikar, 4

mutual break-up can be the hardest type to deal with for both men and women. In this situation I believe men and women have equal opportunities to be upset and there is no way of determining who handles this type of break-up better. Oddly on the other hand when it comes to one sided break-ups, which results from one person deciding that they do not want to be involved in the relationship anymore, I feel the same way. I think that if you are the person being broken up with, because you cheated on your partner, that the person doing the breaking-up will have a harder time with it. If you are breaking up with someone because you just don’t want to be with them anymore than I believe that it will be harder on the person who is being broken-up with.

Losing an important relationship can be either complicated or pretty simple. In my life I have had somewhat simple break-ups and usually the guy has had a harder time than I have. My current relationship has only gone through one rocky point in which my boyfriend broke up with me after we had been dating for about a year and a half. At first I had a really hard time, I was in 11th grade and felt like my world was about to end. After about a week of being upset I started to change my way of thinking and realized I needed to move on. About two weeks after that he started to show his emotion and became really upset. This goes back to my theory that guys hold their emotions in until they realize that sometimes romantic relationships can be more important than they think. In that situation I think he had a harder time than I did, most likely because I let my emotions out and talked to people about what I was going through while he held his in. Recently we have discussed going our separate ways and after four and a half years it is a difficult thing to go through. Now if we were to break-up it would be just as difficult for him as it would be for me because the only reason for us to break-up would be because we just aren’t right for each other. Even though that may or may not be the case doesn’t make it hurt any less. Mizikar, 5

While reading some parts of the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships it was brought up that ending a relationship should not be thought of as a singular event, but rather an ongoing process which I had never thought of before. I find this interesting because it brings up the fact that ending a relationship is often times a time consuming event. Men and women both have to deal with the rough emotions of losing someone they cared about. Due to the fact that women usually express their feelings more and feel more comfortable talking to people about the situation I think that they would handle the situation a little better. This leads to less grieving time because you aren’t thinking about it constantly without letting anything out. The masculine gender role includes the traditional assumption that masculinity tends to reject weakness, emotional expressiveness and any characteristic or behavior that tends to resemble women (Human Communications 13-14). In other words men don’t like to cry or be upset. I feel like ignoring negative emotions for a long period of time will increase the strength of them and at some point you will have to confront them. Men in this situation will have a harder time dealing with an emotional break-up. Men on the other hand will maybe not even realize the impact the break-up has on them until months later. But once again it is hard to say who will handle it better when it depends on so many different variables.

When I started this paper I thought that I could answer my question without a doubt. But as time went on and I did more and more research I came to the conclusion that there is no definite answer to my question. Who deals with break-ups better, men or women? I really believe that it depends on the situation and the people who are involved. I truly believe that it depends on each person individually and how they deal with their emotions. There is no doubt in my mind that breaking-up is hard on both men and women and will continue to be a hard fact of life. I think that gender plays a part in the way that you deal with the situation, but there are so Mizikar, 6

many different variables between men and women that it is difficult to even compare them. As they say, breaking up is hard to do, and in my opinion it has and will continue to be difficult regardless if you are male or female. Mizikar, 7