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Personal Space: Men vs. Women

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When it comes to how much personal space, who prefers more of it, men or women? The surprising answer might burst your personal space bubble. Share this on Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1oCn6Mf Share this on Twitter: http://ctt.ec/jN8D0 Subscribe: http://bit.ly/1l8JXv3 On the web: http://www.stuffmomnevertoldyou.com/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/momstuffpodcast Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StuffMomNeverToldYou Google+: http://bit.ly/1kNchOQ Tumblr: http://stuffmomnevertoldyou.tumblr.com/ Instagram: http://instagram.com/stuffmomnevertoldyou# Join Cristen to get down to the business of being a woman and all the Stuff Mom Never Told You about bodies, boys and the female brain.
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Text Comments (395)
I'm neither male nor female and my preferred personal space is... well, that's a difficult question to answer because I usually avoid human contact and stay in my own company. It's much more peaceful this way 😊
fabiovitoriano7 (2 months ago)
As a Brazilian, we don't have the concept of personal space, so it's pretty normal for people touch you without even consider to ask for it kkkk
Sherlock Sleuther (3 months ago)
I think the gender specific personal space ideas apply more with strangers. I have a definite radius I am not comfortable with strangers within, but If I know the person, I'm fine. If I know the person really well, I don't care about them invading my intimate space either, as long as they don't start doing questionable things. The gender doesn't really matter if I know the person.
The range of my personal space i wish for not invaded variies very much depending on which person it is
Amber Roberts (3 months ago)
I’m honestly not sure about this, but I imagine mine usually falls in social on average. Most people, it’s public. But if I’m close to someone, this regularly swings the other way to intimate
もケニー (3 months ago)
You look beautiful in that tank top.
earth ocean (4 months ago)
Funny, I always pegged you guys as cat people, lol!!
JustAHorrorShow (5 months ago)
I'm a woman and I prefer a LOT of personal space.
Sarath Menon (6 months ago)
Actually its pretty false that personal space is only on the front..one can actually feel if somebody is standing behind him
Arye Avraham (7 months ago)
If you dont masturbate to porn women want to get close to you as possible
Bruce Wayne (7 months ago)
It is SO fucking annoying when guys don't give me personal space. I mean this as a guy. Like they seriously must have no common sense.
Horny Pervert (8 months ago)
I am a socialist. There is no personal space. Only the country.
Aditya Verma (9 months ago)
Am I in love
Random Idiot (10 months ago)
Intimate some demonstration made me laugh, you fell into the sofa Relatable
CreativiTimothy (11 months ago)
Is it weird that I move away from friends or something, because I attempt to respect their personal space? I don't mind that they are like 10 inches from me, but I think I'm too ugly or something. They don't seem to mind being super close though, so I think I'm fine?
Michael Skinner (11 months ago)
When you have 5 siblings, there is no personal space😑
Clay Richard (1 year ago)
Love the brick wall and old window.
Miraculous Ladybug (1 year ago)
With some people like my close friends and SOME family members I don't mind having them close. However some people that I absolutely loath need to not even be on the same side of the room as me.
Mackenzie Esslin (1 year ago)
I thrive with people around me unless your a creepy guy then go away but otherwise I love to hug people and be close my sister is more needing her personal space
18 13 (1 year ago)
I'm the same way about keeping the world at arms length. I can't stand strangers in line standing beside or behind me at arms length. If I feel that they're too close I eye them up and down and maintain eye contact until they back the fuck off.
Haannibal777 (1 year ago)
I feel like the dog really wants to say "F*ck of! Get off me!", at the end.
Elsif (1 year ago)
I care about my personal space. Who's around me? here we go: 1. personal space 2. personal space 3. Get out of my personal space...
eh maybe not (1 year ago)
>the SJW has a rape fetish shocker
MrBrokenSorrow (1 year ago)
I don't know about anyone else but I get agitated if someone stands behind me for too long; I tense up and try to get them to back off. Also... my personal space bubble is about 2-10 feet around me; anyone I willingly and comfortably let in closer than 2 feet, is a close friend, family member, or significant other. My scale looks something like this: Touching - 2 feet = Trusted loved one 2 - 10 feet = Friend or someone who doesn't bother me 11 - 15 feet = People I don't like or don't have an opinion of can stay here but I'm watching 15+ feet = Stranger danger
MrBrokenSorrow (1 year ago)
P.S. Drinking game! Take a drink every time she says personal space. Chug your drink if there is a dog in the picture. Take a shot every time she does something cute... enjoy your trip to the hospital where personal space doesn't exist.
Kernow Forest (1 year ago)
That is some mouth she has, 4ft wide and all over the place.......
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
I like my space. Except if you are a kitty. Kitties are always welcome.
The Legged Snake (2 years ago)
Stay at least 3-4 ft away from me unless we're in a crowd or we're engaged in conversation. Stay more than 1 foot away from my body at all times. Those are my rules. I know two people that hover closer and closer to you as I talk to them, whenever I back up and they pursue me, I place my hand on their chest and hold them at arm's length.
Rosalie Stevenson (2 years ago)
Is personal space different in different countries, like Japan?
Kerry (1 year ago)
Personal spaces norms vary from country to country. Some cultures stand much closer together when they talk (I noticed this with people I met from Brazil.) I'm sure the research she is talking about only studied subjects in the US.
Catherine Mitchell (2 years ago)
I have a very circular personal space.. meaning I don't like strangers or people I don't trust behind me or beside me either... not just in front... I also don't like random physical contact like touching my shoulder out of pity or to get my attention... and I hate when I do something nice for a guy and they try and kiss my hand to thank me... then look shocked when I snatch it before they get to. I always think they're trying to shake me hand too. annoying.
Nicole Watamaniuk (1 year ago)
Ugh, the whole hand kissing crap is so cringy and gross. PSA: Please don't even do this. Ever.
Sarcasticron (2 years ago)
Actually, the reason why babies don't have or respond to personal space is the same reason cats, dogs, etc don't: because personal space is a consequence of our upright posture. Standing upright frees our hands to do stuff, and they need a space in which to get that stuff done. This is also why we mostly only care about personal space in front of us--because that's where we do stuff with our hands, not behind or beside us. The explanation offered--having to do with a threat response--actually makes no sense. Someone behind you is much more of a threat than someone in front of you, where you can see them and fend them off with your hands if necessary.
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
Sarcasticron Perhaps, however, she cited the studies found that the brain's threat response is only triggered by things approaching us from the front. The brain is not perfect at recognising threats.
ICE LORD 99 (2 years ago)
There's this guy at college who smells really bad and shouts every thing, he's very annoying and will just put his face next to yours. I really hate him and I wanna just punch him in the face. I feel like he has no personal space and expects other people to be the same as him. if someone doesn't stab him soon then I'll f***ing stab him myself
animefan2861 (2 years ago)
I'm a bit wary of people that I don't know, especially males. If we don't know each other and I'm unsure if they share common interests, then I want them to stay quite a ways away from me. If we share some common interests, then they can come closer, but I will move closer if I deem them safe to be around. I judge based off of vibes, so if it's negative, you better back the fuck up if you don't want me to panic.
kelly Vandiver (2 years ago)
One lady constantly gets in my personal space, so I decided to test her by backing away. She followed me clear across the room.
Haroun Baleign (2 years ago)
If someone violates my personal space, I will execute their family and friends, enslave their people and lock them up in prisons where they never forget their mistakes. Unless they are hot girls.
NANA BANANA (2 years ago)
About at length as well
Brooke in Books (2 years ago)
Super super big personal space bubble! Even in my own family I'm likely to get irritated about it. But I'm also a highly sensitive person, so things like body heat and voice volume are especially sensitive. And I actually cannot stand people being to close to my sides or back either but I was raised in the military and am a super paranoid individual! Socializing is so fun! 😁
KazeRyuTrey09 (2 years ago)
Or kiss 'em X'D
Romeo Sincere (2 years ago)
It depends on the person.
Lalle Rue (2 years ago)
She's so adorable lol
Mena Beshai (2 years ago)
i really don't get it when i was younger like in middle school 6th grade to be exact. because i was raised as an egyptain kinda either that or i never had the sense of personal space mine was like 5-6 inches everyone was uncomfortable tea(hers had to keep reminding me to ba(k up alittle. Now i keep my personal spa(e in (ertious of others if they step in i don't mined its up to them how (lose they want to get (ause they'll never pass that5-6 in(h mark
Cameron Jones (2 years ago)
I think it's worth mentioning that in different parts of the world, personal space varies, which is really interesting.
Jose Bartoli (2 years ago)
SOOOO TRUE!!!!
Sandra Day (2 years ago)
can you not use stupid terms like hetero normative and just call it normal people?
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
Sandra Day That implies non heterosexual people are abnormal.
Anön Y'müse (2 years ago)
Heteronormative framework. Feminist bullshit. Drop.
Cian (2 years ago)
As a guy who trains BJJ/Wrestling with most of my close friends there is no such thing as personal space.
Riley Stamper (2 years ago)
I say that if you are close enough for me to slap you probably will be
Kristina Sandnes (2 years ago)
I think I've been traumatised by standing on the bus every day, sandwiched in between a ton of sweaty, stinky people.
Brian Kronz (2 years ago)
I like my space, my body needs room to breath. Please don't get to close to me.
TiredAndGrumpy (2 years ago)
i know this one person, they are really really bad at invading my space. i do not know them well at all. they make me so uncomfortable its unreal. if they got any closer to my face they would be breathing my air. i'm pretty sure its a dominance thing though, because it feels like they do it on purpose. i wish they would just cut it out. i'm not subtle about how uncomfortable it makes me, i have even spoken out, moved away and joked about how it is ridiculous. orz
Tsarevna Hilda (2 years ago)
Women are the more sociable sex? So shyness does distinguish gender?
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
Tsarevna Hilda I think she means we're expected and raised to be more sociable.
Yuki Ame (2 years ago)
+Tsarevna Hilda We are not more extroverted, we are just less often discouraged from showing our emotions. Most boys learn from very young age that "crying like a girl" or being "touchy feely" will cause peers (sometimes even adults) to laugh at them and perceive them as weak. So they "toughen up". Cue heart conditions at the age of 40, but that's a whole different topic. No objections to becoming world leaders from me though :) even if sociability is probably not the top qualification that should require
Tsarevna Hilda (2 years ago)
+Yuki Ame But why? Well then, why don't we become world leaders if we're more extroverted than guys?
Yuki Ame (2 years ago)
+Tsarevna Hilda Probably not. Social expectations and upbringing do though
sweetone1896 (2 years ago)
With strangers and people who I don't know well, I need a lot of personal space. I've had two co workers in the past that would be way to close to me m, like "intimate" space close, when talking. I had to back up and they would always move closer. It was unnerving. Depending on how close of a friend someone is, I don't mind them at arms length maybe a bit closer. I like hugging my friends, as a way to say good bye.
Soros Phuvix (2 years ago)
I hate being too close to people, even if they're my friends I'm not really a huge hug hi/bye type of person. Like it's okay if you're joking with me and use me for a prop for something then I just let myself become a manageable noodle, but please no prolonged touching. Unless you're my intimate partner and it's cold, cuddle me and cuddle me hard. Also don't even talk to me in public, like if I'm at the store or doing something else besides being your coworker/schoolmate/student, don't strike up a conversation, especially in line. Those things fall flatter than a pancake in a few short sentences. AND DON'T try to pick a conversation AGAIN when it dies!
Molly Beth Shaffer (2 years ago)
I believe one reason many (not all) adult women are more comfortable with (predominately) female strangers in their personal and intimate space may be partially due to the beauty industry. Men are ok with someone behind them briefly cutting their hair, or getting a massage. But women tend to "get pampered" from the back and front—facials, makeup application, etc. Most of these activities are seen to boost the lady's confidence, making it more inherently acceptable for non-threatening strangers to get close.
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
Molly Beth Shaffer Interesting idea. I haven't had beauty treatments (salon hair cut etc) for most of my life and I have large personal space. I also wonder if it's a heteronormative thing? I'm not straight, so...
Katie (2 years ago)
I have this one friend that always gets closer to me as we are talking and I have to awkwardly back up and then she gets too close again and and i have to back up again lol love her but need that personal space!
OverWatchJojo (2 years ago)
Psssh, personal space? That bubble popped long ago for me. Did the bubble every exist? Dunno. Personal space with guy. PRESSING AGAINST HIM MAKING HIM FEEL REALLY UNCOMFORTABLE. Personal space with girl. RUBBING FACE AGAINST HER FACE TO MARK HER WITH MY SCENT. Personal space with friend. DID I TELL YOU THE ONES ON TOP WERE NOT FRIENDS? (lol)
ILand (2 years ago)
Personal space various depending on cultural exposure. People's comforts are completely conditioned.
GoogIe PIus (2 years ago)
But what if I find humans absolutely adorable and just want to hug everybody?
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
GoogIe PIus You invade our privacy enough already! ;p
MnMsandOreos (2 years ago)
I need a lot of space between me and strangers, but friends and family I love being very close to! I often hug and cuddle my friends (when they consent to it of course)
Ashlee Ocasio (2 years ago)
men who sit next to eachother or have close contact (even when not sexual) are afraid people will think that they are gay because of the hyper masculine image of society, its sad because men friendship usually dont last as long and many men dont form very close relationships like women do i know men who wont even go to a movie with a guy, meanwhile im laying pantless in a bed with my bestie...tmi?
Cerulean Skigh (1 year ago)
Ashlee Ocasio Are you straight? I'd never be pantless with anyone but my husband but I'm not straight, so, makes it a bit different.
Tsarevna Hilda (2 years ago)
Is that why men are more shy?
Sunny (3 years ago)
Honestly I never think that way before but I'm realizing now I've been very concerned about my personal space in my whole life....
Luke Sued (3 years ago)
In the sandwich queues at my school, it is physically shoulder to shoulder and there is always a troll kid at the back that pushes people in front and a domino affect happens. I get really ratty when people do that
Luke Sued (3 years ago)
So many pervy men and gold digging women in this comment section.
Avalaxy (3 years ago)
I'd get into her personal space.
SpookyRavioli (3 years ago)
up close
Dashcam Dumbasses (3 years ago)
Some people just don't seem to have any sense of personal space. There is this female co-worker that's awesome to work with and maybe a tad annoying but cute and if we're standing next to each other somehow our shoulders will be touching and when she talks to me (we're the same height) she's literally right up in my face and her nose is probably less than 10 cm from my nose if that and if I make her laugh I get a face full of hot air when she laughs. She tends to get close to other people too but she gets really close to me.
rainy month (3 years ago)
I like when hot guys get in my personal space the most.
rainy month (3 years ago)
I don't mind people getting close as long as its in a non threatening way. To the person who made this video and to the other people who say they need a lot of personal space, just wait until you're old and no one wants to even look at you let alone even get near you or touch you and then see how you feel then.
OldAccountTMK (3 years ago)
HUGS FOR DAYS!!!
Jessica Hunter-Page (3 years ago)
I can't handle people in the space behind or beside me, as well as in front of me. Queuing really stresses me out XD
Bill Josh (3 years ago)
Ugh, this girl has such a liberal bias. I wish people would make videos about sociology without mixing in their own views.
Rosa Martinez (3 years ago)
PUBLIC SPACE FOR EVERYONE ^^ basically me
Amias Shipley (3 years ago)
Not sure how the gender stuff applies for a nonbinary person (I know, I know, scientific studies, cishetnormative binary, etc) but I prefer as much space as possible. I will sit a minimum of two chairs away from any person in a room if I don't know them. If I know them, I prefer at least one between us if we're not close friends. And standing within 2-3 feet of me if you're not literally my best friend on the planet is a no-no. I can't describe my hatred for random hugs from people who consider me a friend.
hvd iv (3 years ago)
there is a girl that i work with and we talk alot even about sex.she has a boy friend.and she stands right next to me at work and and we are both touching shoulders and arms against each other.do you think she liks me?
Emma Grace Jackman (3 years ago)
Omg i dont do personal space at all like we friends HUG we aquanties HUG you anybody but a stranger or someone i hate HUG
Fanny for Fun (3 years ago)
I seem to prefer a large personal space and it takes quite a while before I'm comfortable with anyone being within arm's length. I prefer two arm lengths normally, but that's not always possible and some people take offense. Like if you have a person with no need for personal space talking to you and automatically back away the same amout of space, even if you still want to carry on the conversation. And I'm actually no more tolerant towards women being in my space.
Nadeem Zafar (3 years ago)
I think it depends on the type of environment you're in and the dynamic that exists between you and the other person/people in that environment. Men, as you quite rightly point out, generally aren't quite as sociable as women, and tend to imply a need for greater personal space than women. However, if you are very close friends with someone, whether male or female, you are likely not to need as much personal space as you are a lot more comfortable with that other person. However, with a total stranger, you are likely to want more personal space as you don't know them well enough to make a judgement on them yet. It all depends on the situation.
LoriPurdy Faitel (3 years ago)
hmm personal space, I am a very touchy person and a huggy lady.  I also am a traumatic brain injury survivor and that is why I found this video. Since the injury I went back to college and I am a practicing Occupational Therapy Assistant, and I work with the traumatic brain injured! I have a 30 minute presentation tomorrow on social life as it pertains to the brain injured.  Huge story but beyond 'normal' space issues, the brain injured usually have lost what they previously experienced as their personal bubble. I am going to use parts of this video and some demonstration among my audience. Thanks
Kyra Lee (3 years ago)
if its a stranger then arms length is comfortable but with friends it can be in my personal or intimate space.
Kibate (3 years ago)
My personal space is pretty much the same everywhere, which is something like "If i can still see you, you are too close" (just joking...a little) in other words since i am uncomfortable almost everywhere i simply hide my problem with it all the time, so it seems like i have no personal space at all....ironic much However one thing that absolutely does not work is actual skin contact with another person, even with family members...
Stijn Kneefel (3 years ago)
haha this is so true, some things don't need to be proven scientifically. If you just look around you, you can see it too. I recognize it so much!
John Byrne (3 years ago)
I spend a fair amount of time in bars, yes my wife is there too, we're there to converse. Nothing weird, but because of the ambient sound it is necessary to get pretty close. So in most other settings I would prefer at least arms length, Here things with either gender, are pretty cozy.
plagg (3 years ago)
I'm the type of person that gets tense when someone- doesn't matter if they're male, female, both, or neither I don't care- gets in my arm and a half space.  I will start to fold in on myself to try and obtain that space again or I'll just leave. It's good that I don't live in an area where, like, bus or train travel would be necessary because I'd probably go insane.
KageandYuki (3 years ago)
I hate my personal space invaded. Only my family and a few close friends can get close. Even then if those people constantly invade my personal space I usually become very hostile. It is a lot worse for strangers as I swing my fists around when frustrating (from lack of personal space). But then I only hit strangers when they are being creepy. Such as a guy in my class thinking he was hot stuff coming up behind me and saying creepy things in my ear got whacked in the face. Then he sang out to the world that I am a bad person and he tried to get me in trouble (this was at school). He got in trouble for making a scene and harassing me in the first place. Girls when being bitchy who also think they're hot stuff and get up in my face are surprised when they 'oh so amazing' persons get bruised when i hit them out of the way. I once even warned a girl is she didn't take a few steps back, she got closer (this was a lecturing bitch) and i pushed her the steps she could of taken the first place. She went off then came bitching I had made her gum bleed. I pushed her shoulder. 😒
Niklas Fritzell (3 years ago)
Now that mouth moves in weird ways...
Rina Goode (3 years ago)
I like keeping people at least 10 feet away unless I love them. ( My dogs, my mom, my dad, and my friends)
prideling (3 years ago)
It's also a cultural thing I think. I've noticed that people in my culture are lots more ok with staying close to each other, touching and hugging even though there is not that much intimacy between the two people. 
kittycatswagmaster5000 (3 years ago)
1o feet
BlueHypothermicReality (3 years ago)
me it depends on who it is. if its my friends i have no personal space physically though i always need an eye contact and noise personal space... but if its a stranger i as long as they arent touching me without my consent or leaning into me for no reason im usually fine.
Virgil Williams (4 years ago)
I feel like this. Unless you're the President of the United States, a Celeb, have OCD, A cold, or someone that's very important. You don't deserve that type of personal space. So a lot of average Joe's need to get over them selves, and get up off the Self narcissism bit. lol
Fruits&Nuts (4 years ago)
Please include your scientific articles! I need them!
kzzinsky (4 years ago)
My personal space requirements are directly proportional to how much I want to sleep with someone else. If I don't want to sleep with you, beyond arms distance is perfect. For people that I don't actually know, another room entirely is preferable. If I wouldn't mind getting you naked, I will happily stand touching.
Rachel Diamond (4 years ago)
OMG your dog is so cute. Perfect demo subject :p
Talross (4 years ago)
My personal space behind me can also be very important. Sometimes, I feel like that bubble is just as big as the one in front, while other times it might be about half. Either way, it's still there. 
Oliviasaurus1 (4 years ago)
I invade everyone's personal space. All the time. I just am constantly touching people or super close to others.
DankyNuggets (4 years ago)
If i can touch you your to close. friends and family excluded.
The Fox Hermit (4 years ago)
When someone invades your personal space http://fc09.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2011/184/6/4/rev_up_those_fryers_anm__gif__by_blucatt4ever-d3kuk7o.gif
Julia Perdigueiro (4 years ago)
whoa, I'm late, but you linked the "sitting like a lady" video to this one so here I am! :) I would like to contribute saying that the size of your personal space seems to me to be influenced by culture... I'm from Brazil and there people tend to come much closer to you even if they don't know you/just met you, and also they touch you more - you can be touched by a total stranger when walking on the street and that's pretty common. Keep up the nice videos, I love them!! KTHXBYE
TheShamansQuestion (4 years ago)
I'm a hetero guy and I'd like to be quite near to my close friends, such as hugging them, or resting on them, though it's not exactly easy to arrange with them :(. Other than that, I'd probably keep a considerable distance.
sleepyinsomniac (4 years ago)
If you're my very very close friend i prefer 0 personal space, come here let me hug you. If i don't know you/barely know you/don't like you please stay at least 5m away from me, preferably in a different room.
Dakota Rose (4 years ago)
If it's someone I know well, I don't really care how close they are, but as far as strangers or acquaintances, I don't like them too close! Also, regarding the personal space of behind and on the sides of, I actually get more creeped out if someone is close behind me, because I can't see then and what they are doing.
Sarah Metcalf (4 years ago)
I notice the slightest invasion of my personal space bubble from any direction. I'm especially wary of people behind me. I can't stand it when strangers get way too close. It's creepy, makes me very uncomfortable, and even angers me because my threat sensors go off. There's an unwritten rule that people seem to rarely follow any more about personal space with strangers in public venues. Understandably the more crowded a space is, the less space you can allow. I can't stress enough how rude, annoying, and inherently threatening it is to crowd a stranger for no reason (i.e. standing inches away from me while I'm trying to pay for my groceries). That being said, I am a very affectionate person with loved ones and can't get enough hugs. I just want my personal space to be respected.

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