Social Question

phoenyx's avatar

Do I write like a girl?

Asked by phoenyx (7385points) February 24th, 2010

Today some of my co-workers were razzing me about my handwriting (I took it as a compliment). You can see an example of my handwriting here.

It got me thinking.

Why are women expected to have good penmanship, but men aren’t? Didn’t calligraphers, copiers, etc. used to be men?

Why do we judge people by their penmanship?

Why do we expect certain people (e.g. doctors) to have poor penmanship and that’s accepted?

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67 Answers

Cheeseball451's avatar

Nah your hand writing is perfectly fine, to me your handwriting is a man

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

An appropriate response would be “pffft, whatever”.
It’s not like you’re dotting your i’s with happy faces and hearts.
Your co-workers must have terrible hand writing.

gailcalled's avatar

That is gender-neutral handwriting.

wilma's avatar

Looks plenty masculine to me.
I envy your legible handwriting, mine is awful, no matter how hard I try.

gggritso's avatar

They’re just jealous ‘cause they can’t read their own :)

gailcalled's avatar

Given that you print in a generic fashion, rather than using cursive, it would be hard to guess your gender from that small sample.

Sarcasm's avatar

To be honest, spending more than 2 seconds thinking about this is really blowing it out of proportion.

If I saw that handwriting, I would first guess that it’s from a female. But if you said “No, it’s from me, a guy!” I wouldn’t be surprised.

If we’re going to stereotype genders, and push them to extremes, men are messy slobs. It makes sense, I guess, that our handwriting is expected to be messy and poorly defined. Women on the other hand are clean, and pay attention to appearances and detail. So, it would make sense for them to have handwriting that reflects that.

But, that’s if we’re going to push everything to an extreme stereotype.

Side note, almost all of the male teachers I’ve had had this tendency to write everything in their own style of EVERYTHING IN ALL CAPS handwriting, just making letters bigger when they should be capitalized. It’s an interesting trend.

Why do we expect certain people (e.g. doctors) to have poor penmanship and that’s accepted?
They control the spice, they control the universe. They’re in control of our meds. It’s not a good idea to criticize.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Seriously? hand-writing? gendered? awesome. Cause enough things aren’t lol. Your handwriting is great. My hand writing isn’t so great but then again I don’t feel like a woman, after all.

essieness's avatar

I agree with @gailcalled, it’s pretty gender-neutral. I applaud you for having decent handwriting.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

It looks like an architect’s handwriting.

SeventhSense's avatar

I don’t know but the question? MEH.. A little fem. :)
Who gives AFF.

JLeslie's avatar

Gender neutral leaning towards male. Women typically don’t print. Girl writing is generally way more loopy/round, and like I said, they tend to use cursive/script; although from what I understand some schools are no longer teaching cursive, which horrifies me.

gailcalled's avatar

My daughter prints because her cursive is indecipherable. She is clearly and unambiguously on the feminine end of the gender bell curve.

JONESGH's avatar

My best guy friend does calligraphy for wedding invitations.

JLeslie's avatar

@gailcalled How old is she?

@JONESGH My grandfather did caligraphy also.

phoenyx's avatar

Here’s another example (just to be thorough).

I couldn’t care less about what people think of my handwriting; I just thought it would be a fun way to start a handwriting discussion.

SeventhSense's avatar

@phoenyx
She has beautiful handwriting. Must be a special lady.

phoenyx's avatar

@SeventhSense +5 lurve for making me lol

Michael_Huntington's avatar

My handwriting is like that
but on crack

JLeslie's avatar

@phoenyx yeah, neutral, legible, good handwriting.

filmfann's avatar

Men who have the nicest handwritting are the ones who have spent time in jail.
I have noticed this, and my daughter (who knows such men) agrees.

JLeslie's avatar

@filmfann OMG! I saw on Joy Behar these women who start dating or marrying men in jail and a lot of them say that part of what attracted them was that the men had beautiful handwriting.

SeventhSense's avatar

Hey our founding fathers had beautiful handwriting…
then again there was the wigs and tights

JLeslie's avatar

@SeventhSense LOL. I think people took more pride in their penmanship back then. Maybe women didn’t read and write much back then? I have no idea, just a guess.

My mother has horrendous handwriting, her sister is worse, we call it chicken scratch. So, even though I said female handwriting tends to be rounder and loopier, it for sure should really not be taken as a generalization that means anything,

Rarebear's avatar

Tell ‘em “Yeah, I secretly want to be one inside, can’t you tell?”

That’ll throw ‘em off.

Grisaille's avatar

@filmfann Agreed 100%.

@phoenyx You have very pretty handwriting. Don’t let those bullies bring you down. Just smack them with your purse and walk away.

SeventhSense's avatar

@Grisaille
It’s a European Designer attache!
besides he needs somewhere to store his feathered plumes

Parrappa's avatar

It does look pretty girly. I made fun of a friend of mine last year because his handwriting was girly. It actually is a good thing though; I’m quite jealous of that fine penmanship!

SeventhSense's avatar

<—-writes like a girl with lovely cursive flourishes

nikipedia's avatar

Women tend to have better fine motor skills. Hence, better handwriting.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I see no smiley faces or little hearts or daisies above your i’s and j’s, so I think you’re OK.

Gah, in school, those girls made me want to puke.

DominicX's avatar

Cursive is cursive and it pretty much looks the same for most people.

I have ridiculously nice handwriting (you may think I’m being cocky well, I kinda am but it’s true) and people have accused mine of being girly, but to me, it’s just neat. Not girly. Traditional “girly” handwriting tends to be bigger, more bubbly, more curly, etc.

I really don’t bother to judge handwriting in terms of “masculine” and “feminine”. Must we do that for everything?

I know you weren’t asking for it, but here’s mine: http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff293/Onnajanai/myhandwriting-1.png Would you call that girly, just out of curiosity?

Grisaille's avatar

@DominicX You write like an 8th grade honor student.

FutureMemory's avatar

@nikipedia Women tend to have better fine motor skills.

Where did you hear that crap?

gailcalled's avatar

@DominicX: I’d call it handprinting.

SeventhSense's avatar

@DominicX
You write like a Kindergarten Teacher

DominicX's avatar

@Grisaille :)

@gailcalled Well, printing is a form of writing…

I never write in cursive. My cursive sucks compared to my handwriting. I wasn’t writing slowly when I wrote that, either. That’s just how I write.

phoenyx's avatar

@Grisaille How did you know I own a purse?

MrsDufresne's avatar

You’re cursive looks almost identical to my husband’s. The writing in your first example looks masculine to me too. It is legible and pleasant. I understand what you mean about being judged by our handwriting. I have mastered several different types of scripts just so that I can confuse those that would attempt to do a handwriting analysis on me. It kind of gives me the creeps that people actually attempt to find out who you are based on how your write.

Grisaille's avatar

@phoenyx Your handwriting.

Sarcasm's avatar

@DominicX http://i.imgur.com/hAhvA.jpg. That curl on “Handwriting”? Yeah, I almost wrote “Handrighting”. I’m smart.

gggritso's avatar

@nikipedia Is that a completely serious observation? If so, how does else does that manifest itself?

DominicX's avatar

@Sarcasm This is all I have to say. :)

Sarcasm's avatar

@DominicX I don’t think you actually lolled while writing that!

nikipedia's avatar

@gggritso: Hells yeah it’s serious! But I don’t think the implications reach particularly far. Maybe someone else has some ideas.

Grisaille's avatar

@nikipedia I am certain that means you are a much better nose-picker than I am.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

There is no such thing as masculine or feminine handwriting. Don’t let anyone challenge your sense of who you are. Ignore those who are looking for a way to make you feel insecure and just thake pride in what you do and how you do it!

casheroo's avatar

Looks like a guys handwriting to me.

I have terrible handwriting, and if I ever forgot to write my name at the top..the teachers always asked the male students whose paper it was. Quite embarrassing.

gemiwing's avatar

Your R’s are flat-topped (in print) so it looks masculine to me, for what it’s worth.

Jeruba's avatar

I just think you write like somebody whose cursive doesn’t get much use.

nope's avatar

You have very tidy handwriting, and that is a strength, not a problem, no matter what your gender.

One question though, so many of the responses here infer that you’re a male, I think because of the context of your question…however, that wasn’t said anywhere. So are you a guy, or a girl? Just curious.

ucme's avatar

Like this is totally weird heehee.I have that same shit,yeah I know like totally awesome right heehee.Anyways,gotta shoot i’m gonna take my little doggy woggy for his walkies now heehee.Later sweety pie. Ciao!!!!

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Dot your lower-case i with hearts, and include some curlicues. Sign with a little flower motif—and kiss whoever says that.

Jaysus… don’t those people have anything better to criticize?

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Why do we expect certain people (e.g. doctors) to have poor penmanship?

Dunno, but that’s why I write all of my prescriptions electronically these days. :-)

wundayatta's avatar

I don’t think we do judge people based on penmanship any more. You almost never see anyone’s handwriting any more.

I think that, on average (i.e., gross generalization), women are better at attending to details, and that includes the details of handwriting. Men are more impatient, and can’t be bothered to write clearly. They just want to get it done.

Obviously there’s a wide amount of variation, and I’m just making up those generalizations off the top of my head, but I think they might hold up.

Anyone can learn to write with clean lines and a steady hand if they spend time practicing. So in the days when secretarial work was man’s work, they learned how to write well. Also, I think that the student body was largely male. For a long time, women weren’t taught to write, except if they came from very wealthy families.

FWIW, I always hated writing. My hand would cramp rapidly. Learning to type saved my life, because I could finally go fast enough that I didn’t lose half my thoughts before they got put down on paper. For at least a decade I haven’t used a pen for much besides signing things. My signature has grown progressively less legible. Now, due to the influence of certain meds, my hands shake. Not only can I no longer hold chop sticks, but my illegible signature now looks like a spidery illegible signature.

fathippo's avatar

man your writing is neat…! congratulations =P my hand runs off with itself and letters aren’t really letters most of the time just rises n’ falls etc, unless I put thought into it, but it’s still really uneven. It’s weird because I put lots of careful thought into drawing but writing just wants to do itself. =/

Resonantscythe's avatar

It’s to straight edged to be female. Women usually round their letters out (in my experience). But it’s a bit neat to be male. I say it looks gender neutral.

SeventhSense's avatar

@wundayatta
Chop sticks are highly overrated anyway, says the man eating his sushi.
For the life of me I can’t imagine why I don’t grab a fork. I feel some Samurai compulsion or something to use chopsticks when I eat sushi. I suppose it could be that they never give you anything but chopsticks in a Japanese restaurant but I’m home for cripes sake.

polycinco's avatar

I am a girl and my handwriting is terrible sometimes, your writing is fine, I have guy friends with incredibly beautiful handwriting and they don’t feel like they write like a girl, we all have different handwritings doesnt matter if you are a guy or a girl

gailcalled's avatar

@polycinco: Nice answer but try several of these. ............

SeventhSense's avatar

She writes like a run on sentence

gailcalled's avatar

@SeventhSense: (Sorry. “Run-on sentence.” “Run on sentence” sounded like a new Olympic event on first reading. The much-beloved hyphen was invented for a reason.”)

SeventhSense's avatar

@gailcalled
Oh snap now you’re dissing me when I had your back flower girl?
Talk to the

stardust's avatar

You’re all man!

kritiper's avatar

If you dot your i’s with little hearts, then, yes.

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