psychology stress Essay

Submitted By amara2016
Words: 670
Pages: 3

It is possible that many factors mediate the effects of stress, for example personality, social support, age, gender, lifestyle, self-esteem and coping styles. All factors have studies done on them to back it up with evidence. There are three different explanations which proves that men and women cope differently when stressed, they are known as the biological, social and cognitive explanation.
It has been proven by researchers that gender can have an impact on stress, Men and women differ in many ways. So, because of how they differ psychologists looked at males and females and how biological, social and cognitive differences influenced how they responded to stress. According to Taylor et al (2000) the biological explanation has proven that stress can have a different effect whether they are male or female. (Taylor, 2012)
The biological explanation proves that men and women react different when stressed, it is possible that women may have a weaker fight or flight response than men who have the role of ‘hunter-gatherer’ where as women who have the caring role for the children. More so Taylor explains that instead of the fight for flight response women tend to have the ‘tend and befriend’ response as women are more likely to seek social support from friends and family to help them cope with stress. the study ‘tend and befriend’ consisted of a study done with rats and the results showed that female rats show aggression only in circumstances that required defence such as the presence of an intruder (Adams 1992). This is also supported by research showing that females hesitate more than males in delivering an electric shock to an unknown subject when instructed to do so (Miller et al., 1974).It is suggested that women produce a calmer response to stress even though they have a lot more duties at home and at work that is because a hormone known as oxytocin is released in response to women being stressed. This hormone has been shown to lead to maternal behaviour and social affiliation. However, men don’t release this hormone because this is released during childbirth. (Cardwell, 2012)
According to Carroll (1992) women do tend to seek social support when stressed this is known as social explanation. Men seem to take on a more western stereotypical social role i.e. drinking and smoking and are less open about their feelings unlike women. Heart disease has increased in women, but this could be they have had a change in their social role and not dealing with stress in the correct way because it is more acceptable for women to drink and smoke. (McCarthy, 2005)
However, it is claimed by Vogele et al (1997) that women are able to