Amanda Pendolino
April 12, 2013

Study Says Men Don’t Know Eye-Rolls Mean You’re Annoyed

As I always tell my girl friends: men don’t get subtlety. When you think you’re dropping a hint, he has no idea. He’s not manipulating you … he’s just clueless!

Now I have scientific proof.

According to a new study published in the journal PLOS ONE, men had twice as much trouble understanding women’s emotions when looking at images of their eyes than they did when looking at pictures of men’s eyes.

In addition, areas of the male brain tied to emotion didn’t activate as strongly when the men looked at women’s eyes.

The study, led by Boris Schiffer, a researcher at the LWL-University Hospital in Bochum, Germany, looked at 22 men between the ages of 21 and 52 (with an average age of 36) and measured their brain activity with a functional magnetic resonance imaging scanner.

Researchers asked the men to look at images of 36 pairs of eyes (half men, half women) and guess the emotion the people felt (such as distrustful or terrified). Men understood their bros better, and more quickly!

Why does this happen? The study’s authors have one evolutionary theory: “As men were more involved in hunting and territory fights, it would have been important for them to be able to predict and foresee the intentions and actions of their male rivals.”

If we want men to understand us, we’ll have to tell them exactly how we feel.