Someone sent me an article on a model of female response to stress that was developed in recent years by Shelley Taylor, a social psychologist at UCLA. Since I was unaware of this model and found it interesting, I thought I would share. Here is how the article begins:
Move over “fight-or-flight”–there’s a new paradigm in town, the first new model to describe people’s stress response patterns in more than 60 years.
The model, called “tend-and-befriend” by its developers, won’t replace fight-or-flight. Rather, it adds another dimension to the stress-response arsenal, says University of California, Los Angeles, psychologist Shelley Taylor, PhD, who, along with five colleagues, developed the model.
In particular, they propose that females respond to stressful situations by protecting themselves and their young through nurturing behaviors–the “tend” part of the model–and forming alliances with a larger social group, particularly among women–the “befriend” part of the model. Males, in contrast, show less of a tendency toward tending and befriending, sticking more to the fight-or-flight response, they suggest.