Lady Of The Manor: Strong, Silent Type? What A Bore
Thereâ€™s an old saying: â€œGirls are talkers, boys are walkers.â€ While that may be the case in some families, in ours it couldnâ€™t be further from the truth. All three of my three sons â€“ and my husband â€“ have been known to hold their own in the art of conversation. Sure, Iâ€™m the chattiest of the group (or so Iâ€™ve been told), but I donâ€™t think it has anything to do with being a woman.
Or does it?
In her bestselling book The Female Brain, Dr. Luan Brizendine claims that women talk three times more than men. According to Brizendine, this difference is formed in utero, when testosterone affects the area of the brain where communication and emotion develop. The book became a bestseller, despite mixed reviews and contrary opinions.
My husband and I went to a seminar early on in our marriage that explained how women like to â€œtalkâ€ while men like to â€œdo.â€ Upon hearing this claim, the men nodded knowingly. The women, on the other hand, weren’t soÂ convinced. Funny how these guys were all able to participate in a conversation before they got married! The lecturer suggested that the best way to handle this scenario was to talk while doing something else. Something physical. Guess the instructor wasnâ€™t so into pillow talk. Or had never been stuck in long-weekend traffic.
My three sons each started walking at around 12 months old. Then again, so did lots of baby girls I know. In terms of talking, â€œmama,â€ â€œdadaâ€ and â€œdoggyâ€ came easily to them, but each boy developed language skills at aÂ different rate. The oldest had his go-to words but didnâ€™t really get going until he was about two. The second started chit-chatting at nine months old and hasnâ€™t stopped since. My baby, now three, has always managed to communicate in his own lingo.
While weâ€™re led to believe that boys can grunt out a sentence in three words or less while their female counterparts talk well into the night, I know plenty of male motor-mouths. On our safari honeymoon, our driver told my husband heâ€™d never heard two chattier passengers in all the drives heâ€™d done. Ever. And, interestingly enough, he claimed my man talked way more than I did. Nine years later, we still argue about it.
Perhaps we should try the â€œTalk-O-Meter,â€ an iPhone app that determines whoâ€™s really doing all the talking. The only trouble is that it has a hard time distinguishing voices when people talk over each other. Which is par for the course in our family.
In our house full of boys, the amount of talk varies by the minute. Hockey, Mario and farts always beat â€œhow was your day?â€ in terms of conversation starters. Sure, there are moments where I find myself in a three-way conversation â€“ by myself. But more often the cacophony of voices is so overwhelming we all end up shouting to be heard. We call it communicating. And I like it. Silence is overrated.