By Leonore Leitner
Thinking like a man
Some months ago I started to exactly observe my thoughts, what I think about and why I think about it. I also started to consciously change what I think about.
Decisive for keeping closer observation to what I am thinking about was when I had a really bad break up with my years-long boyfriend. After that, I was in a helix of mixed emotions and it seemed like I couldn’t think about anything else no more. No matter how much I wanted to concentrate on something, these thoughts about the conversations, discoveries and the drama kept crawling back and they made approximately about 70% of my thoughts of the day. I didn’t want this. I didn’t want to spend my whole day thinking about unnecessary things I can’t change, but I also couldn’t stop thinking about it.
Even before this happened, I had the feeling, that my thoughts kept reversing too much about dudes. And I also thought that it’s the same with a lot of women I know, at least in my surrounding. I felt like they are more likely to think about men and what happened between them, than the other way around.
Why is that? Do we need a topic to talk about and somehow it’s quite often men, or why is this such a present topic for some of us? Why do women scrutinize what happens so much more, is it just by habit or is it another way of thinking we have?
(Sorry if you don’t feel that way, it’s a bit generalized because it’s like that in my environment.)
When I kept thinking about this I remembered an interesting talk I had with my mum some months ago, about a conversation she had with a friend. Her friend had unique insights into both: the thinking of a woman and a man because she decided to become a man about 2 years ago and started taking male hormones. So my mum told me that through his process of taking male hormones he recognized, that there was a big change in his thinking that also changed him a lot because he stopped questioning and worrying all of the time, just letting things go without thinking so much about all of the little things, focusing more on one thought at a time and also more on his own stuff.
This information was amazing. The answer for me, to why I couldn’t stop thinking about it and that the way I think was all just because that’s the female brain, was within reach. But because neither of us was sure about what exactly was said in the talk, I wanted to talk to him again about the changes he remarked in his thinking.
It was a pretty good talk but not really like my mum told me, because he said the changes in his thinking weren’t that big, the main changes were that he started to not rethink everything 10 times after it happened but just felt like it happened and that’s okay and he also doesn’t felt guilty for things that often anymore. He mentioned that this is probably because the male hormone drowns the female one which is responsible for mothering, caretaking and makes you more in need of harmony.
But the way bigger change for him made the abandoning of the social „role“ of a woman. Because by giving up this role he didn’t have the urge to always make everything right for everyone, feeling responsible for things that happened and having regards for every other person than himself anymore (probably that’s also because of this female hormone, but mostly the expectations he thought would be brought towards her as a woman). So mostly I think this problem with the „role“ you are seen as a woman, is maybe not the role itself but what you think others expect of you because you are a woman.
It’s actually not the first time I heard that changing into the role of a man made a huge difference. Another female friend of mine is working it the film industry and through the years she changes her outward appearances a lot. She became more androgynous towards more masculine because she said as a woman, wearing dresses and long hair, she didn’t get taken seriously from anyone in this industry. But since changing her appearance, she gets taken way more seriously she said.
So what difference does the role of a woman and how you present yourself as a woman makes? I think this is a really convoluted topic but anyways you decide who you are, no matter if man or woman. But I for sure also think that sometimes it’s hard to take a step back to realize that some things we do, we may not do because this is who we are but because we think (or know) this is what’s expected from us because of being the gender we are. It’s for sure not easy to say for oneself how much we are bound to our roles and the relating thereto expectations to us.
This is way too long by now, so anyways back to the thoughts: What you think about most of the time probably is just habit, your surrounding and priorities, so there’s no excuse/ answer for me, to why men were in my thoughts too much but you are not your thoughts and you can change them so that’s fine.