How We’re Different and What to Do About It- Allan and Barbara Pease

The book is as interesting as the title. If you have been curious why men and women react in a particular manner then this book throws light on how men and women evolved over the years.

The book provides scientific view how the brains of men and women are wired differently and that is why Men are hard of hearing and women are geographically challenged (confused about geography).

The interesting points from this book are as follows:

  • It took us nearly 100 million years to evolve into a society sophisticated enough to put a man on the moon, but he still had to go to the toilet like his primitive ancestors when he got there.

Differences between Man and Woman

  • He was the lunchchaser, she was the nest-defender.
  • His success as a man was measured by his ability to make a kill and bring it home, and his self-worth was measured by her appreciation for his struggle and effort.
  • Her self-worth came from the man’s appreciation of her home-making and nurturing skills. Her ability to bear children was considered magical, even sacred, for she alone held the secret to giving life. She was never expected to hunt animals, fight enemies or change light bulbs.
  • Women have wider peripheral vision, men have tunnel vision.
  • it makes sense for a woman to drive during the day and for a man to drive at night.
  • Males use their left brain only for listening but females use both brains for this task. The female brain has the ability to separate and categorise sound and make decisions about each sound.
  • Men have thicker skin than women which explains why women get more wrinkles than men.
  • Men are also less sensitive to a woman who is suffering pain or discomfort.
  • A strong immune system can make a man seem ‘strangely compelling’ .
  • Men joke that they sleep by the door of their first marital home for a quick getaway. In truth, it’s pure defender instinct.
  • ‘It’s obvious that women are smarter than men. Think about it – diamonds are a girl’s best friend; man’s best friend is a dog. ‘
  • Fifteen to twenty percent of men have feminised brains. About ten percent of women have masculinised brains.
  • Men can mentally index their problems and put them on hold. Women churn.
  • To get a man to listen, give him advance notice and provide an agenda.
  • To motivate a man, ask ‘will’ or ‘would’ questions to get commitment.
  • A man who asks a woman to marry him says, ‘Will you marry me?’ He never says, ‘Could you marry me?’
  • Boys are interested in things and how they work, girls are interested in people and relationships.
  • If a woman is unhappy in her relationships, she can’t concentrate on her work. If a man is unhappy at work he can’t focus on his relationships.
  • Men have always defined themselves by their work and accomplishments and women define their own self-worth by the quality of their relationships.
  • a ‘how-do-I-fix-it?’ response to life. Men use this ‘fix it’ criterion in their approach to almost everything they do.
  • A woman leaves a man not because she is unhappy with what he can provide, but because she is emotionally unfulfilled.
  • In being wrong, a man considers himself a failure because he has not been able to do his job properly.
  • Don’t offer a man advice unless be asks for it. Tell him you have confidence in his ability to work things out.
  • When you’re dealing with an upset woman, don’t offer solutions or invalidate her feelings – just show her you’re listening.
  • A man needed to be able to ejaculate as often as possible in the shortest space of time to avoid being caught by predators or enemies.
  • Some men think that parenting ends with conception. A woman’s brain is programmed to find a man who will make a commitment to being around long enough to rear her children. This is reflected in what women look for in a long-term partner.
  • Men are Microwaves, Women are Electric Ovens.
  • Male sex drive is like a microwave – it ignites instantly and operates at full capacity within seconds, and can be turned off just as quickly when the meal is cooked.
  • Women’s sex drive is like an electric oven – it heats slowly to its top temperature and takes a lot longer to cool down.
  • When it comes to sex, women need a reason; men need a place.
  • A woman wants lots of sex with the man she loves. A man wants lots of sex.
  • A man’s brain needs variety. Like most male mammals, a man is pre-wired to seek out and mate with as many healthy females as possible.
    This is why men love novelty factors like sexy lingerie in a monogamous relationship.
    Unlike other mammals, men can fool themselves into believing they have a harem of different women by dressing their partners in a range of sexy clothing and lingerie. It is, in effect, his version of putting a bag over her head to provide a variety of different appearances. Most women know the effect lingerie has on men although few understand why it is so powerful.
  • Men are stimulated through their eyes, women through their ears. Men’s brains are wired to look at female shapes and this is why erotic images have so much impact on them. Women, with their greater range of sensory information receptors, want to hear sweet words.
  • Men prefer looks to brains because most men can see better than they can think.
  • Men are attracted visually to curves, leg lengths, and shapes. Any woman with the right shape and proportions will catch his attention.
  • A man needs to have sex before he can get in tune with his feelings. Unfortunately, a woman needs him to do that first before she’s turned on to sex.
  • A man is wired to hunt.
  • Men want love, but they can only get it through sex.
  • After a man has had great sex, his softer, feminine side emerges.
    He can hear birds singing, is struck by the colours of the trees, can smell the flowers and is touched by the words of a song.
    Before sex, he probably only noticed the birds because of the mess they made on his car. But a man needs to understand this after-sex side is the one that a woman loves to see and finds wonderfully seductive.
  • At the same time, a woman needs to understand the importance of giving great sex to a man so she can glimpse this softer side and explain how alluring she finds it.
  • Most women need at least 30 minutes of foreplay before they are ready for sex. Men need at least 30 seconds, and most consider driving back to her place as foreplay.
  • After sex, a woman is high on hormones and is ready to take on the world. She wants to touch, cuddle and talk.
    A man, however, if he hasn’t already fallen asleep, sometimes withdraws by getting up and ‘doing something’ such as changing a lightbulb or making coffee. This is because a man needs to feel in control of himself at all times and, during orgasm, he temporarily loses control.
    Getting up and doing something allows him to regain that command.
  • A man’s biological job is to find as many healthy females as possible and help them conceive. A woman’s biological role is to bear children and find a partner who will stick around long enough to raise them.
  • Sex is the price women pay for marriage. Marriage is the price men pay for sex.

Interesting facts about Brain

  • Oxytocin is the hormone that stimulates the urge to be touched and fires up our touch receptors.
  • ‘Old habits die hard, ‘ say the old folks. ‘Genetic memory is alive and operating, ‘ say the scientists. Genetic memory is part of our instinctive behaviour.
  • We know that the right hemisphere, which is the creative side, controls the left side of the body, while the left hemisphere controls logic, reason, speech and the body’s right side. The left brain is where language and vocabulary are located, particularly for men, and the right brain stores and controls visual information.
  • The left and right brain hemispheres are connected by a bundle of nerve fibres called the corpus callosum. This cable lets both sides of the brain communicate and exchange information.
  • We are who we are because of hormones. We are all the result of our chemistry.
  • The left brain controls the physical functions of the right side of the body, which could be why most people write with the right hand. This would also explain why the handwriting of most women is much more legible than that of men – women’s specific language centres are pre-wired for better use of language, both spoken and written.
  • There are an estimated 100 billion neurones that make up the brain’s communication network.
  • As we now know, six to eight weeks after conception, a male foetus (XY) receives a massive dose of male hormones called androgens which first forms the testes, and then a second dose to alter the brain from a female format to a male configuration.
  • If the male foetus does not receive enough male hormone at the appropriate time, one of two things may happen. Firstly, a baby boy may be born with a brain structure that is more feminine than masculine, in other words, a boy who will most likely be gay by puberty.
  • Secondly, a genetic boy may be born with a fully functioning female brain and a set of male genitals. This person will be transgender. This is a person who is biologically male but feeling as if he is a female. Sometimes a genetic male is born with a set of both male and female genitals. Geneticist Anne Moir in her ground-breaking book Brainsex documents the many cases of genetic boys being born looking like girls and being raised as girls, only suddenly to find that they have penis and testicles that ‘appear’ at puberty.
  • For humans the brain is ‘set’ six to eight weeks after conception.
  • Rats are a favourite for scientific research. They have hormones, genes and a central nervous system like humans, but their brains do not develop in the womb like a human’s – they develop after birth which allows us to see what’s going on. Castrate a male rat and he thinks he’s a she and becomes a social, nest-building rat.
  • If, during the early stages of pregnancy, testosterone is suppressed and the foetus is male, the chance of giving birth to a gay boy dramatically increases because female hormones become the hormones used to configure the brain. One German study in the 1970s showed that mothers who suffered severe stress during early pregnancy had six times the chance of giving birth to a gay son.
  • The area in the brain essential for sexual behaviour is called the hypothalamus and this area is markedly smaller in women than in men.
  • Your sex centre is located in the hypothalamus which is the part of the brain that also controls the emotions, heart rate and blood pressure.
  • It’s about the size of a cherry and weighs around 4.5 grams and is larger in men than in women, homosexuals and transsexuals.
  • ‘Endorphins, which are the body’s natural pain killers, are released during sex and are good for relieving headache, whiplash and arthritis.’
  • There are three types of emotion in the brain: lust, infatuation and attachment.
  • Dopamine gives the feeling of well-being, phenylethylamine increases excitement levels, serotonin creates a sense of emotional stability and norepinephrine induces the feeling that you can achieve anything.
  • The bit of the brain that handles our emotions – the limbic system – has two parts.
    There is the old part (temporal limbic) which is the bit that deals with sex and violence, and a newer part (gyrus cinguli) which is more linked into thinking and imagining.
    Male brains are more active in the old part and are more tuned for action and women’s brains are active in the newer part for ‘symbolic emotional responses.’
  • Three times sex a week burns up 35,000 kilojoules, which is equal to running 130 kilometres in a year.
  • The hormone DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is also released just prior to orgasm, and improves cognition, builds the immune system, inhibits tumour growth and builds bones.
  • In a woman, oxytocin, the hormone that arouses the desire to be touched, is released in large doses during sex and her oestrogen levels also increase.
  • A rooster is a very randy male bird which can copulate with hens almost incessantly, more than 60 times in a given mating. He cannot, however, mate with the same hen more than five times in one day. By the sixth time, he completely loses interest and can’t ‘get it up’ but, if he is presented with a new hen, he can mount her with the same enthusiasm he did with the first. This is known as the ‘Rooster Effect’.
  • A bull will lose interest after copulating seven times with the same cow but can be fired up again by the introduction of a new one. By the time he reaches the tenth new cow, he is still giving an impressive performance.
  • This is nature’s way of ensuring that the male’s seed is spread as widely as possible in order to achieve the highest number of conceptions and ensure the survival of that species.
  • On a good day, he can have sex with the same woman five times but will usually fail to give a sixth encore. Introduce a new female however, and, like roosters and bulls, his interest (along with parts of his anatomy) can rapidly rise.
  • From a cold start to orgasm, a healthy man’s average time is around two-and-a-half minutes. For a healthy woman, the same average is 13 minutes.
  • A remarkable research that showed a man’s brain can unconsciously sense from a woman’s behaviour when her ovulation stage has arrived.
    His body then calculates and releases the exact amount of sperm required at any given moment to create the greatest chance of conception.
    For example, if a couple is having sex every day, around the woman’s ovulation time his body may release 100 million sperm per session. If he hasn’t seen her for three days, his body will release 300 million sperm in a session, and 500 million if he has not seen her for five days – even if he has been having sex every day with other women. Based on biological calculations by his brain, his body releases just enough to do the job of conception and fight off any other competitive sperm that may be present.

What Men and Women Look For

A What Women Look For
1. Personality
2. Humour
3. Sensitivity
4. Brains
5. Good body
B What Men Think Women Look For
1. Personality 2. Good body 3. Humour 4. Sensitivity 5. Good looks

C What Men Look For
1. Personality
2. Good looks
3. Brains
4. Humour
5. Good body

D What Women Think Men Look For
1. Good looks 2. Good body 3. Breasts 4. Bum 5. Personality

To summarize :
The fact that men were usually the hunters and women the nurturers even today dictates our behaviour, beliefs and priorities.