While many men complain that women are gaining an edge on men, in reality women are attempting to make up for lost time. Historically a woman’s identity was tied up with a man. Without a man she had no identity. She would be regarded as a maid or spinster, someone to be pitied. She hadn’t made it. Women would in a woman’s eyes be chosen by a man because of their financial background or their looks. On financial background they had little control but in looks they have control. Therefore while it is comforting for a man to know he is good looking it was/is imperative that a woman look good.
This means that when it comes to looks women are very vulnerable to criticism. To call a woman a “Fat bitch” is far more damaging than calling man a “Fat pig”. The man might laugh it off with a mild sneer, he certainly not go overboard with fears of societal rejection. He would probably regard her as ignorant and be patronizing about her comments. She on the other hand would be very angry, upset and fearful. Her reaction by his standards would be over the top. But at a deep psychological level of generational attitudes feel threatened.
This may change over time, but when there is a verbal put down that gets heard as an attack the anger stems for the woman from feeling vulnerable at a subconscious level. In terms of anger management a smart man knows when the line is crossed with a woman. Verbal put downs generally hurt her far more than her put downs hurt him.