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Handwriting- nature, nurture or a bit of both?

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by Canterpiece, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. Canterpiece

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    So, I happened to stumble upon an interesting video recently.

    [YOUTUBE]lSzqsNDxpUM[/YOUTUBE]

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lSzqsNDxpUM

    Now, I think it's fair to say that most people guess someone's gender based on their writing, but is there really a natural difference between the sexes? The video discusses possible reasons for why (generally) girls are perceived to have neater hand writing. She also mentions that she has terrible handwriting, and is also left-handed (like me!)

    I know that left-handers tend to be seen as having bad handwriting (it's sometimes used as a joke, my mind thinks of that seen in the Inbetweeners where they joke about a piece of bad handwriting and how it must've been written by a left-hander).

    Now before you start getting mad at me, I know that there are left-handed people who have spectacular handwriting, however I am not one of them. I'm left-handed but my handwriting is just "eh", I mean, it's clearly readable but I can't write in cursive (I've tried, at school I was always kept behind to practice, they were very particular on how we were supposed to write but I was always terrible at it, as a result I have this weird mixture of cursive letters that show up occasionally in mostly printed letters).

    People always joke about doctors having terrible writing, which is interesting. Is there any truth to that stereotype? :shrug:

    I remember one time, I came across a guy who had almost identical writing to me, it was weird. So much so, that when we'd work in pairs and would share the same sheet, we'd sometimes forget how'd written what, and it'd take a while to figure it out. It was uncanny really. :/ I don't suppose that happens very often, does it? I suppose with similar upbringing, maybe. Hmm... :eusa_thin

    So what do you think? What's your handwriting like? :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

    ---------- Post added 21st Dec 2016 at 12:54 AM ----------

    *scene in the Imbetweeners, not seen.

    ---------- Post added 21st Dec 2016 at 12:55 AM ----------

    *Inbetweeners, not Imbetweeners.

    -What is wrong with me today? :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

    ---------- Post added 21st Dec 2016 at 12:57 AM ----------

    *who'd written what, not how.
     
  2. Reciprocal

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    Interesting video! I'm a right-handed trans guy with longer ring fingers, and my handwriting is super girly. I write in cursive which seems to be a dying art: my handwriting is quite distinctive because I write in full cursive. When I was younger, my handwriting was really s*****y, like stereotypical "boy writing" and I'm not sure what made that change. I think it's nurture more than nature.

    Here's a photo, ignore the terrible quality.
    [​IMG]
     
  3. Blackrainbow

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    Reciprocal- You have such beautiful handwriting! Not only is it cursive, but you're so consistent in the sizing of your letters? I don't know how you do that but it's amazing.

    Comparing someone to their handwriting is always really interesting. This is very much a generalisation, but I think girls do tend have neater writing, which I'll guess is to do with handwriting being an extension of how one desires to come across to others, and how one is taught they should try to appear to others. In my primary school, handwriting was a really big thing and we had lessons with fountain pens, being taught to join letters etc. I would say the girls were expected generally to produce neater handwriting, maybe just because the teacher's expected that girls would want to put more care in to their writing?

    I have dyspraxia and got in trouble often for messy writing. I remember feeling frustrated a lot both with myself and my teachers, because I was supposed to have neat, pretty handwriting by way of being a girl who wanted to have neat, pretty handwriting, but of course, it wasn't happening and not every teacher would recognise that I was trying my best. My younger brother has horribly messy writing, and in so far as I can tell it hasn't really been an issue for him, either personally or with teachers.

    I can't say I've seen the writing of enough left handed people to come to any conclusion, but my mother is left handed, and I've always thought she was one of the few people I know, whose handwriting just doesn't reflect her as a person? She has very small, square writing, and she's pretty much the opposite as a person. I know being left handed was at one time seen as a flaw and left handed people were either forced to overcorrect their writing or write with the right hand instead, so maybe it has something to do with that.
     
  4. PatrickUK

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    With practice and patience, I think it's possible to improve and perfect handwriting and change between different styles and fonts (or even create your own), but unless you are really interested in handwriting and calligraphy, like me, you probably will not dedicate that much time or effort to it.

    One of the main reasons for scrawl is a lack of patience and effort. I've observed people writing and more often than not messy writers are scribbling away at a ridiculous pace, hardly lifting the pen from the page. You can't do that and expect to maintain any reasonable standard -- all you end up with is a mish-mash of illegibility.

    Left handed writers are at something of a disadvantage because their view of the page is blocked while they are writing (if you are right handed, try writing from right to left to see how it is for left handed people). It's not necessarily true that left handed people will be messy writers though, because they learn to adapt and compensate. My sister was left handed and she maintained a good standard, only losing it was when she rushed.

    I don't think it's nature. We all have the potential to be neat writers and learn a style that doesn't reflect our gender either way.
     
  5. Loppox

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    I am right handed (sometimes left) and my handwriting's pretty messy. A lot of people have called it masculine.
    However, my drawings seem to be pleasing to the eye. It comes as rather a shock when people discover that I don't have neat handwriting.
    I am also convinced that with patience and practice, one can improve their handwriting, although it will be different per person.
    I personally don't have problems with my handwriting. I just don't put a lot of effort in it. I can, however, say that I have several types of handwriting. I have messy, sloppy handwriting in my notes for school; I have cursive, neat handwriting for important letters; and a whole other style of handwriting when I am making a list. This as well leads to confusion and I often heard ''Is that your handwriting? I thought you had a different one''.
    Writing is a form of drawing. One can switch styles or/and stick with the one they feel most comfortable with. And it can be different per person, one can have trouble with it and for another it can feel like no problem at all.
    I agree with Patrick here.
     
  6. HappyGirlLucky

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    I am left-handed but was forced to learn to write with my right in elementary, because the principal was old-fashioned to say the least. The result is that I ended up mostly ambidextrous and I have two entirely different results of handwriting depending on which hand I use.

    My right hand's handwriting is pretty neat and I sometimes even get compliments on it, while my left hand's handwriting looks pretty awful, pretty much the way it was when I was forced to stop using it. It looks like two entirely different people's handwriting, the one from my right a "typical girl's handwriting" and the one from my left just any preschool child's messy handwriting. So obviously I learned how to write like I write with my right (that sounded funny) and would agree with PatrickUK and Loppox and say it is entirely nurture. :slight_smile:

    Also I dislike cursive a lot, because unless you can produce something as amazing as Reciprocal's writing it becomes entirely illegible very quickly. Usually I have no idea what a text written in cursive is supposed to say or it takes a lot longer to read at least, and I know I'm not alone in this. So why is cursive even a thing? :confused:
     
  7. Linkmaste

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    I'm a leftie. When I take my time I can be neat but I'm usually in a rush so I scribble. I was also disciplined for writing with my left and turned ambdex for awhile.

    It's interesting because my Nana had beautiful writing that's been passed down to all of the females of the family. Somehow it skipped me haha.
     
  8. Totesgaybrah

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    I have terrible messy hand writing, I was always in a rush with school work so I never bothered working on making my hand writing better. Not to say many people have not tried to make me write neater. Now if I slow down to a crawl then I can make it look better but it would take me all day to write a page.

    When I was young I was told that messy handwriting was a sign of mental illness, anyone know about that? Although left handedness was once considered a mental illness too so what do they know?
     
  9. BreakinDaylight

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    I'm right-handed, and my handwriting is kind of messy but with a slight cursive flair to it? My handwriting used to be neater, and if I make an effort it can be kind of neat.

    My handwriting is actually the same as my dad's? I didn't know this because I don't live with my dad, but my mom points it out everytime I show her something I wrote.
     
  10. NoPlaceLikeHomo

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    My handwriting for capital letters is very similar to my dad's, but my handwriting for lowercase letters is way different. I'm right handed and my handwriting is messy but readable. When I'm not going to be turning something in, I usually write in all caps because it feels more comfortable? idk.
     
  11. SiKiHe

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    I'm right handed. And work in an office so I write often. I think it's a bit sloppy and was told often growing up that it was bad. But I also like to draw, and feel like I have good line control when drawing and painting.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Love is love

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    I feel like you copy(mimic) the handwriting you see when your young. Same with voices.
     
  13. ghostly

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    My handwriting doesn't really have a consistent style, sometimes it's messy sometimes it's neat. It's also this weird mix between cursive and print lol, probably because I moved from a private school where everyone wrote in cursive to a public school where everyone wrote in print. I'm right-handed btw.
     
  14. Kodo

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    Intriguing topic.

    I cannot see how nature would have much to do with handwriting, as it is a learned skill and when we are born we cannot write at all (e.g. not inherent or genetic). And anyone, with diligence, can make their handwriting better or different.

    I am right-handed, though for some reason show peculiar left-handed traits and have been asked many times if I'm left-handed. For example, I would shoot a bow or hang my clothing the "left-handed way." When I swim, my left stroke has better form than my right. Balancing on my left foot for dance is easier. When I was younger I would also sometimes write with my left in mirror writing.

    But I digress.

    I write with my right. My handwriting has changed many times and as of now it is sort of a scrawl. Thought I intend to sit down and work on it because I don't like it. Currently I write in print.
     
    #14 Kodo, Dec 21, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016
  15. SiKiHe

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    Do you know why you lean toward left handedness in other actions? My mother is left handed when writing and eating, but does everything else right handed for convenience. Since most handed objects are made for right handed people, she adapted over time rather than buying left handed things.
     
  16. Reciprocal

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    I rather like your handwriting. The irregularity of it makes it seem very personal to you, and I find the lawless, choatic style quite artistic.
     
  17. AlamoCity

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    My handwriting sucks. I don't feel my handwriting is particularly "girly," but my "y's" have a bit of a curve :lol:. I also have a funny way of doing "f's" where some look "regular" and some are done in a "cursive" manner. I even added a sample of my cursive which is almost illegible to me. My signature has been the same for over a decade (even as a minor) and has always gotten looks that it's very "doctor-like." I feel that the more we type and less we hand-write, the more it becomes less intuitive how to write by hand the less finesse we have (at least for me). I will say that most of the openly gay guys I knew growing up had "beautiful" handwriting. I wouldn't necessarily say mine is :lol:.
     

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  18. Michael

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    Sorry, I can't see that video, allergy struck me...

    This... And... Calligraphy. You can practice it for many reasons, one of them is how relaxing it is. On many cultures around the world calligraphy is still valued as art. I was lucky enough to learn a few beautiful characters at school, but later on the most of us end up stuck on sloppy handwriting, and now most of us just type whatever on a boring touchscreen.

    I can use both hands, obviously I'm faster using one than the other, and I have at least five different ways of 'handwriting', plus countless signatures.

    The 'doctor handwriting' is for real... How would you write after seeing so many fake patients complaining about imaginary diseases?

    Also perhaps there is a reason behind that 'gender influenced handwriting', not of biological nature, but social : Simple imitation, which is 'nurture' at the end.
     
  19. SabreBear

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    My handwriting can change depending on how much time/care I put into it, and simply how I am feeling that day. I can go from slop that no one can read, to handwriting fancy enough (to quote my professor): "be its own font".

    I am biologically female, but I never thought that had much effect on it. Namely because there is a guy in my class who's handwriting is so utterly neat/amazing, that it could blow you away.

    I think it just comes down to practice. I write a lot by-hand, so naturally I would have a lot more practice than someone who writes via computer/keyboard.
     
  20. YuriBunny

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    My handwriting is extremely big and round. I'd say it's quite feminine.