Results of a study conducted by Dr. Deborah Tannen, Georgetown University professor and expert in communication, revealed that girls of all ages preferred face-to-face conversations. Conversely, boys preferred to have conversations in a side-by-side configuration, rarely making eye contact.
So how does this play out during conflict?
For men, the face-to-face approach can make him feel like he’s being challenged. Internally, he prepares to defend himself. And, as every football fan knows, the best defense is a good offense.
For women, the side-by-side approach often feels like he doesn’t care. If she feels like she’s being ignored, she’ll “hit” harder with her words, trying to get him to respond to her.