Having a tough time understanding what's going on in your man's mind? Things might just get easier for you, as experts have revealed ten things you should know about a man's brain.
A man's brain varies tremendously over his lifetime. From his wandering eye to his desire to mate for life, there are some things every woman need to know about a man.
According to Live Science, here's are the things you need to know about guys' minds.
While females are generally considered the more emotional, infant boys are more emotionally reactive and expressive than infant girls, researchers have found.
Adult men have slightly stronger emotional reactions, too-but only before they are aware of their feelings, found a 2008 study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Psychology.
More vulnerable to loneliness
While loneliness can take a toll on everyone's health and brain, older men seem particularly vulnerable, said Louann Brizendine, of the University of California, San Francisco, and author of The Male Brain.
Men tend to reach out less than women, which exacerbates loneliness and the toll it takes on their brains'' social circuits, she said.
Focused on solutions
While many studies suggest that women are more empathetic than men, Brizendine stressed this is not entirely true. The empathy system of the male brain does respond when someone is stressed or expressing a problem. But the "fix-it" region quickly takes over.
Hard-wired to check out women
While often linked to aggression and hostility, testosterone is also the hormone of the libido. And guys have six times the amount surging through their veins as women, said Pranjal Mehta, of the Columbia University in New York.
Mehta and colleagues found that testosterone impairs the impulse-control region of the brain. While it has yet to be studied, this may explain why, as Brizendine says, men ogle women as if on "auto-pilot."
They often forget about the woman once she is out of their visual field, said Brizendine.
Must defend turf
"Part of the male job, evolutionarily-speaking, is to defend turf," said Brizendine.
More research is needed in humans but in other male mammals, the "defend my turf" brain area is larger than their female counterparts,'' she said.
While women too have fits of possessiveness, men are much more likely to become violent when faced with a threat to their love life or territory, she said.
Embraces chain of command
An unstable hierarchy can cause men considerable anxiety, said Brizendine. But an established chain of command, such as that practiced by the military and many work places, reduces testosterone and curbs male aggression, she said.
Matures over time, really
Pre-occupation with establishing pecking order, which starts as early as age 6, motivates the "male dance, where they are always putting each other down," added Brizendine.
"It is better to be aggressive in a verbal jab than to duke it out," she said.
Psychological studies have shown that one-upmanship holds less appeal for older men. Instead, they pay more attention to relationships and bettering the community, said Brizendine.
The change is likely aided by the slow natural decline in testosterone as a man ages.
Primed for fatherhood
The male brain becomes especially primed for cooperation in the months before becoming a father. Fathers-to-be go through hormone changes-prolactin goes up, testosterone goes down-which likely encourage paternal behavior, found a 2000 study in Evolution and Human Behavior.
Daddy-specific ways of playing with their kids-more rough-housing, more spontaneity, more teasing-can help kids learn better, be more confidant, and prepare them for the real world, studies have shown. Also, involved dads lessen risky kids' sexual behaviour.
Covets wedding bells, too
Women want to settle down, and men want to sow their wild oats forever, the refrain usually goes. But this might be one of the largest misconceptions stemming from the US tendency of using undergrads as test subjects.
Infidelities are most likely to occur before men hit 30, found a study of Bolivian men published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society in 2007. After that, men primarily focus on providing for their families, the study found.