Miscommunication: Gender Role and Relationship

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ENC 1102

4/09/13

Flirting doesn't always come as easy as it may be portrayed in a movie or television show. In fact, there is no exact science to the task, it is based on cause and effect circumstances that neither a man nor woman can always anticipate. When two come together in attempt at starting a new romantic relationship, both sides are betting the odds that what they do, say, or think will have a positive effect on the other. The effects may not always be the positive outcome hoped for, but in every case there is a reaction. In the play Sure Thing written by David Ives, the reader gets to experience an example of how a romantic relationship can either start or come to a halting end. There are many scenarios in the play that Ives provides us with. It is shown that the leading conversation downfalls between the two characters are a lack of similar interest or the luck of bad timing. The bell sounds in the play as something has gone wrong and the scene is restarted into the beginning of multiple new opportunities as the two characters seek the right combination, the right nuance, the right approach that will win the day, and each other's hearts. David Ives play, Sure Thing, demonstrates the struggle of communication between men and women due to the way in which they converse, the emotions they contribute to the conversation, and the influence of gender roles in a relationship. Miscommunication between opposing genders is traditionally a leading cause of many relationship problems, as well as breakups. The way that men and women communicate hinders their relationship. According to, 10 Ways Woman and Men Communicate Differently, by Susan Sherwood Ph. D, “Women communicate through dialogue, discussing emotions, choices and problems. Males remain action-oriented -- the goal of communication is to achieve something.” Coincidentally this relates to Sure Thing because in one part of Bill and Betty's conversation, Betty goes off on a rant to accuse Bill of only using her as someone to sleep with because an old memory of a past relationship triggers her to do so when she misunderstood Bill's style of conversing. While in the meantime Bill Amber 2

only wanted to simply get to know her by asking simple questions. “Bill: Do you come in here a lot?
Betty: Why are you asking?
Bill: Just interested.
Betty: Are you really interested, or do you just want to pick me up?...” (Ives P. 1121). Right then and there both Betty and Bill become instantly turned off from each other simply because one misunderstood the others conversation direction. This goes to show that the miscommunication between Bill and Betty comes strictly from the form of their gender difference and how each character's mind choses to react to each statement. Furthermore, according to the article, Emotional Fitness by Barton Goldsmith Ph. D, it can be a challenge for a man to think with his heart rather than mind as well as feel at the same time. “When a woman wants to talk, and the guy realizes he has to think and feel at the same time, just the idea becomes a challenge. So it's easy to understand why men have a harder time talking about feelings, it's because they have to switch gears from their head to their hearts. Sometimes when they have to do it very quickly, they may feel like the life is being sucked out of them.” (Goldsmith). The difference between a man and women's thinking style plays a large role in a healthy and successful relationship. If a man and woman are not able to stay in the same page as one another in terms of the way each person thinks may or may not be going on with in the relationship, they will develop a miscommunication in the relationship. When a woman and a man must communicate, both must accommodate each others needs in a way to clearly understand one another because it is apparent that when men communicate with other men, they do not talk about their feelings initially. Directly from The Center for Healthcare Communication...
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