The Gender Debate

 Should boys and girls be brought up differently? 

5/7/2014 11:48:55 AM
written By : Vijaya Dalvi Print

This is a debate that evokes ambivalent responses. The question initself could be framed in various ways: How different are boys compared to girls?, Why should they be raised differently?, Should we treat them equally? Should the same rules be applied to boys and girls?. 

One thing is clear: Every child is special and should be raised with love and care regardless of gender. 

Various theories abound with regards to the topic. Research has shown that boys and girls differ in terms of body chemistry, hormones and brain structure. These strongly influence their dissimilarities. All these, however, vary from individual to individual. It is believed that boys’ brains develop more slowly when compared to girls’. In boys, the part of the brain that controls thinking develops more slowly compared to the right half. Hence, the connections between the two are not fully formed. Boys enjoy greater ability in maths and reasoning but are less accomplished with regard to languages and reading. 

In girls, on the other hand, the brain is more active allowing them to be more skilled at multi-tasking and better at reading as well as emotional awareness. Girls’ brains secrete more serotonin whereas boys’ brains secrete more testosterone, a hormone that drives aggression. This results in them finding satisfaction in eating quickly, jumping, moving from one activity to another and engaging themselves in activity that creates excitement and releases pent-up energy like sports and games.

The physiology and anatomy of boys and girls are different, so naturally the way they grow up will also differ. The environment too matters. If there is a boy and a girl in a family, parents tend to be more protective towards the girls and ask the boys to look after their sisters. In today’s society, boys and girls are treated equally and given the same freedom.  It is the environment that makes the difference.

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