This is a guest post by imnotme.
I imagine that more and more heterosexually coupled males and females are going to be running into a serious problem that my feminist wife and I have discovered: the battle of emotions versus rationality.
I believe the reason this is going to be made apparent, soon, is because it’s a discussion that is appropriate for modern young couples faced with this seeming dichotomy. I leave out homosexual couplings because I am not familiar enough with homosexual relationship dynamics to either include or exclude them with any intelligence. However, I am sure something similar could crop up in any relationship where one person approaches conflict emotionally, and the other rationally.
I want to quickly stop you here and clarify the question already forming in your mind; is this guy about to assert that one is better? No. The first mistake my wife and I have discovered about this discussion is that the initial problem is having emotion pitted against rationality in the first place. It is counter-productive to start from there. Both emotion and rationality have distinct and necessary functions in our human development. However, one theory I am now leaning heavily toward, is that emotion is also a sort of genetic leftover from when humans were subject to more predators than Big Business or general systematic oppression. I’m talking about the days of “I win because I am larger.” You know, before we realized we could flourish with technology rather than our biology.
Understandably, you are thinking I just shot myself in the foot by suggesting that emotion is an antiquated, useless leftover of our primitive ancestors. Maybe, but before you react, do YOU know anything about our historical and genetic development? Additionally, both emotion and rationality have a dynamic weakness in communication when used one without the other. For example: in an argument, person X becomes emotional and begins yelling insults. While the insults do not invalidate person X’s need to communicate, person Y has an easy rational out by simply criticizing person X on the grounds that they are simply excited and acting irrational. But… but: person Y didn’t actually say anything at all to the point of person X’s initial concern. Likewise, if person Y attempts talking about their feelings rationally to person X, who is more resonant with emotion, person X will more often than not try to re-orient the discussion around emotional realities, when that is not what person Y wanted to discuss; therefore, they both lose.
So what should the modern heterosexual couple do about this problem? Shut up. Both of you, shut up and think about what you are ACTUALLY TRYING TO SAY.