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In the Name of God بسم الله

Psychological differences between sexes

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  • Veteran Member

In a previous thread I discussed the fact that women are more empathetic than men, and that this difference is innate, and not due to socialisation, patriarchy etc.

My goal here is to see to what extent traditional gender roles are justified by innate differences between the sexes.  Feminists want to abolish traditional gender roles, and view them as inherently oppressive, and one way they try and do this is by denying real differences between the sexes.  Traditional gender roles have men as the providers, and women as the carers and nurturers.  Note that you can champion traditional gender roles whilst also being fully supportive of women getting an education and working.  

The summary below is based on these 2 articles:



-Women experience more negative emotions that men, e.g. guilt, shame, embarrassment

-The personality trait most closely associated with negative emotions is neuroticism,  Women tend to score higher in neuroticism than men.  Its interesting that neuroticism is associated with taking less risks.

Both of the above have been found across multiple cultures, and in fact the differences between sexes are more pronounced in egalitarian cultures.  This shows that they are not due to social factors forces as patriarchy, but are due to innate differences between men and women:


Interestingly, all of these cross-cultural studies find sex differences in neuroticism are larger in cultures with more sociopolitical gender equity. That's right, in more gender egalitarian nations sex differences in neuroticism are larger, not smaller as would be expected if sex differences come only from gender roles, gendered socialization, and patriarchy (see chart below contrasting neuroticism scores of men and women from Northern Europe and Africa; Schmitt, 2015).

-The same goes for personal values such as benevolence (being giving, wanting to help others, provide welfare) and universalism:


Similar results are found in studies of personal values, including values related to altruism and love. In a study of 127 samples in 70 countries (N = 77,528; Schwartz & Rubel-Lifschitz, 2009) women attribute consistently more importance than men do to benevolence and universalism values. National measures of gender egalitarianism predicted sex differences in benevolence and universalism values but, once again, in an unexpected direction. The greater the social, health, and employment equality of women and men in a country…the larger the sex differences (women higher) in benevolence and universalism values. That is, in countries with greater gender equity (e.g., Finland, Sweden), women attribute substantially more importance to benevolence and universalism values than men do. 

- And also for agreeableness, and other help-related traits across cultures.

-And they score lower on anti-social personality traits such as narcissism and psychopathy.  Again these differences are greater in egalitarian societies, so cannot be explained away by socialisation and patriarchy:



Women are higher than men in agreeableness and other help-related personality traits across most cultures (Feingold, 1994), with (once again) the largest sex differences emerging more gender egalitarian cultures (Lippa, 2010; Schmitt et al., 2008).

Women also tend to score lower on anti-social “Dark Triad” personality traits, such as Machiavellianism (d = 0.27), Narcissism (d = 0.16), and psychopathy (d = 0.67; see Schmitt et al., 2016). In a study of 58 nations (Schmitt et al., 2016), the largest sex differences in Machiavellianism were found in relatively high gender egalitarian cultures of Iceland (d = 0.61), New Zealand (d = 0.60), Denmark (d = 0.55), and the Netherlands (d = 0.53).

In conclusion, in addition to women being more empathetic than men, they are:

-more risk averse

-more benevolent

-more agreeable

-less likely to be anti-social e.g. less likely to be narcissitic and psychopathic.

And these differences are innate, not cultural.

It's not hard to see why this would make them better carers and nurturers than men.

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  • Advanced Member

Alasalam alaikum.

Allah made us more benevolent , more risk averse and more agreeable so that we could suffer more than men and in silence.we have to endure so much more than men.

I know it's wrong to complain to Allah. But the only thing i wasn't able to accept was that why did Allah made Men superior to Women.

But it doesn't matter what i do...how much i complain..or cry over it..it won't matter or make a difference because Allah did make men superior and i cannot do anything but accept it.

We feel just as men. We are made of flesh and bones.we have blood running inside us just as men. We bleed if we cut ourselves. Everything is equal so why did Allah in Quran says that men are superior.

All my life i have been made feel like i am nothing just because i am a woman. If i try to speak up i am silenced with anger and threats.

My mother is very submissive but i am not. But there is not much i can do to make better my situation. Because in the end we can not do anything on our own because we always get the answer that Allah made men superior.

If Allah didn't want us to feel this way why did he give a woman a will, a heart ,a mind..so that she could wish.

But now i understand why men are superior.

Because all the prophets were men. Because Allah made a man's responsabilty to take care of his family..to feed them..to take care of them completely and that is not an easy task.

But is it okay for a man to feed his family..to give them a roof..complete their needs but torture them mentally just because he can.

I know your topic is more about other stuff but you compared the both sexes. 

But at the end it doesn't matter what the science or study say because the truth is women are still treated like [Edited Out] in most of the islamic countries on the name of our religion. Just because they are not financially independent. Or are scared of the society. They live all their lives being miserable.

I wish men followed the Prophet SAWW in respecting women just as they follow The Quran about covering a woman's head.

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  • Veteran Member
On 4/19/2018 at 7:40 PM, Ani said:

But now i understand why men are superior.

Sister men aren't superior.  I don't know how you concluded that from my post.  In fact I would have been less surprised if you had concluded that women are superior to men, as my topics have highlighted that women are on average superior to men in many ethical virtues, e.g. empathy, benevolence, sociability.  You have obviously suffered at the hands of certain people, but don't confuse their oppressive actions with Islam.

As a matter of fact, I believe the yardstick to judge superiority is Taqwa, as per the Quran, not sex.  Having said that, at least one marji' has suggested that according to the Qur'an, women are superior to men:  

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