Do women handle stress better than men?

By: Dr. Jennifer B. Lagrotte, DMFT

Do women handle stress better than men? This is a question that has been asked for a very long time. Some believe that women do handle stress better, because they are more emotional. In fact, it was believed that women did not suffer from as much stress as men because they let it out, or released their stress by talking to their friends or crying. It is true that women tend to be more expressive, but it is not necessarily true that they are more emotional than men. Men are emotional as well, they just tend to keep it in more and be less expressive than their counterpart.

When it comes to stress, there have been numerous tests done in order to find a way to target its causes and then address these problems in order to help people reduce the stress in their lives. As stress has been linked to heart problems, and women were found to have a lower rate of heart disease than men, it was thought that it could possibly be due to their not being as stressed. However, in recent times, the number of women suffering from heart disease is increasing and, in some areas, is almost level with the number or percentage of men who suffer from it. This has been attributed, in part, with the increase of women in the workplace, as well as with more women in the higher up and more stressful jobs on the corporate ladder. When looking at this kind of data, one might start thinking that women might not actually handle stress any better than men can. After all, when faced with some of the same hurdles and goals that men have been working toward for centuries, women seem to suffer about the same repercussions as men do when they get to the same game.

After looking at all the data, and how stress has affected both men and women over the last 20 to 30 years, one can really start to wonder if their first observations or assumptions about how each gender handles stress. Maybe women do not actually handle it any better than men, or maybe, life as a whole is becoming more stressed now than it ever was. One has to think about this too; with all this new technology that was meant to make our lives easier, the weekly hours of work has not decreased, they have increased. Though everything is being put onto the computer, people can type as much or more than 80 words a minute, and the internet is as fast as ever, our lives still seem to be more packed, hyper and busier than ever. Now look at it from a family woman's point of view; older values and traditions are still seen clearly in this generation. So, not only is a woman expected to be useful and have a successful career, she has to look after her kids, her husband and the house. It is no wonder that women are starting to see similar numbers in the heart disease column as men. This is why women should be taking a moment, especially if they are feeling extra stressed, to get in touch with an online counselor or online therapist. A little casual online therapy or online counseling couldn't hurt, even if one doesn't really feel they need it. It could actually, quite possibly, save one's life.

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Dr. Jennifer Lagrotte, DMFT is the owner of which offers a variety of online counseling services. If you would like to know more about Jennifer or any of our online therapists, visit our website.

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