The society has socialized girls differently from boys. Right from childhood, girls are oriented to be emotional beings with high levels of emotional expression. For example, the society has socialized girls to adopt certain codes of behavior and values as normative. Girls have high levels of interactivity, socially and emotionally connected to network of friends which are made faster, lost faster and revived faster. Girls, therefore, have the ability to handle the ups and downs of friendships in a more secure way. For example, they can fight and tear into each other, report to the teachers, parents, and older siblings but will never hold grudges forever. Gender socialization has taught girls right from childhood to be forgiving and very accommodative and to be ladylike (Handel 301).
Social codes of conduct orient girls to be very emotionally expressive and will openly break down and cry over their hurt, pains and aches. However, this is only short-lived as girls soon overcome their disappointment and move on with life. Unlike boys, girls will openly avoid areas, things or people that they perceive to be a threat to them. Thus girls easily accept defeat, openly express their fears and weaknesses (Katz 221-2220). The social codes orient them that way. This way, girls are often too quick to admit that they need help especially when they are in danger since social values orient them to be cautious about threats, dangers and risks. Reading this background information will enable one to identify the role of gender socialization in gender specific traits and behaviors for both boys and girls.
Katz makes reference to code of conduct and the way in which the society uses this powerful tool to influence upbringing and socialization of children from childhood to adulthood (Katz 221). The codes have been used by the society as a weapon to influence both boys and girls to behave in a certain stereotypical and pre-determined ways. Implicitly, Katz views this approach to be detrimental since it shuts the potential of girls to achieve certain goals in life. Boys are also socialized not to run away from problems. This is risky because some risks are fatal and it is only prudent for one to flee irrespective of the sex. The socialization in childhood influences children’s prospects in adulthood.