The Independent’s Liz Hoggard asks why heterosexual men refuse to emote on paper despite nearly 80 per cent of women desiring love letters. She says: “Why do so few men write love letters? According to a new survey, 78 per cent of women would love to receive a romantic letter or poem. But only half of men have ever penned one. Valentine’s Day is doomed to disappoint. As women we splurge out our emotions. Desperate to be understood, our letters are littered with sub-clauses, breathless explanations and lots of brackets. It’s like an epistolary novel. Whereas the minute men commit pen to paper, they come over all Victorian. ‘Regards’, ‘soonest’, ‘cheers’. Would it kill them to display a little bit more warmth? For psychoanalyst Darian Leader, the fact that men keep love letters in their correspondence files and women keep theirs among their underwear is telling. Letters are physical, sensual entities for women. For men they’re proof (of love, affection, trust). But they might also get you sued – so better keep them locked up. Recently I sent an email. We were on to date No.5. I composed it with care – no woman the wrong side of 35 wants to look desperate – slapped on the sign-off ‘Liz x’, and pressed send. His reply came back short to the point of brutality: ‘Great. Best, Dave’. Very pointedly, there was no kiss.”
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