Fathers who have both male and female toddlers were “wired for sound” for 48 hours. They also had MRIs done while they were shown pictures of their toddlers.
The results of the study revealed that fathers were more likely to react to a request from their daughter than if it came from their son.
Fathers’ brains responded more strongly to images of their daughters than sons.
In evaluating their language, fathers used different words with daughters. Their words were associated with emotions or body parts like “face” and “fat”.
The words they used with boys were related to power or achievement such as “best” and “win”.
These biases are likely unconscious, but they shape kids’ behavior in line with expectations of gender roles.
Parents need to validate the full range of emotions with kids in order to help them adjust to adulthood in a healthy manner.
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