Happy to be women today in the UK

(143 Posts)
mrsmuddlepies Fri 04-Nov-16 04:58:36

I posted about this on the Chat forum but no one responded and I think it is a significant piece of research.
www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-37600771
The level of satisfaction with being a woman in the UK today is higher than it has ever been, a huge increase on that of 50 years ago and much higher than that of male satisfaction with being men today.
A cause for celebration?

ChocChocPorridge Fri 04-Nov-16 08:40:07

Just over two in five (42%) said that men and women gave up equal amounts of freedom in marriage.

That's an interesting one, and much lower than it would be nice to see.

I'm not sure that there's anything there that's particularly a cause for celebration, there's some progress, but it clearly shows we're not there yet.

I would be interested to see the same poll done for men, and see how they feel too.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Fri 04-Nov-16 08:54:07

I am very happy to be a woman . I've never wanted to be a boy or a man.

mrsmuddlepies Fri 04-Nov-16 09:06:18

We should celebrate the huge strides forward for women in the past 70 years.
I think there is far too much negativity on here about being a woman today in the UK when it is clear that most women do dot envy men at all and are glad to be female.

mrsmuddlepies Fri 04-Nov-16 09:13:08

Survey shows that men in the UK find life difficult. The biggest cause of death for men is suicide. They feel under too much pressure to be the breadwinner compared to women
www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/11238596/A-crisis-of-masculinity-men-are-struggling-to-cope-with-life.html
The survey is YouGov. Sorry, the report is from the Telegraph.

DeviTheGaelet Fri 04-Nov-16 09:15:39

[Eyeroll]
Darnit

WhenSheWasBadSheWasHorrid Fri 04-Nov-16 09:18:26

cause for celebration

I think it's definitely a good thing. Things are generally better for women now than decades ago. I'm not getting the bunting out but being a women in the uk is for the most part and obviously it will vary wildly for individuals pretty good.

IrenetheQuaint Fri 04-Nov-16 09:20:02

Yes, it is absolutely brilliant how much progress there has been in the UK over the last 70 years. As a single woman with a career and my own flat I am grateful for it every day. It's also lovely to see how involved my male friends are in their children's upbringing, compared to my father's generation.

There are still lots of issues and a long way to go (particularly in terms of violence towards women and girls) but I think it's good to remember how far we've come.

BeyondReasonablyDoubts Fri 04-Nov-16 09:20:27

Top cause of death in men is suicide? Wow. Did not know that, why did nobody tell me before?

Iknowthisgirlcanx100 Fri 04-Nov-16 09:27:52

Its been recognised for years. The PSHE curriculum in schools is now very aware of the frequency of suicide amongst young men who struggle to cope with modern life. There is little publicity to create awareness about it on social media sadly.
I think I am right in saying that women are more likely to make a cry for help. Men are statistically more likely to kill themselves because there is little support for them and they suffer in silence.

scallopsrgreat Fri 04-Nov-16 09:31:23

The level of satisfaction with being a woman in the UK today is higher than it has ever been, a huge increase on that of 50 years ago and much higher than that of male satisfaction with being men today. The article doesn't say that at all.

The biggest cause of death for men is suicide. That's not true either.

And as for a crisis in masculinity, well quite frankly there should be. Masculinity perpetuates violence, destruction and privilege. Having said that I appreciate that some men do suffer under a patriarchy. What are men doing about this?

ErrolTheDragon Fri 04-Nov-16 09:39:44

Of course its good that many women are likely to have better lives than 70 years ago, and are benefiting from moves towards more equality. Note that 1947 was probably a time of particular dissatisfaction, with women being kicked out of the jobs they'd had during the war, with the 'head of the house' returning.

Its not good that some men aren't adjusting to a more equal world, are still stuck with their gender stereotypes.

Iknowthisgirlcanx100 Fri 04-Nov-16 09:40:23

Suicide and accidental poisoning leading cause of death for 20-34 year olds
Suicide (including injury/poisoning of undetermined intent) was the leading cause of death for 20-34 year olds (24% of men and 12% of women). Breast cancer leading cause of death for 35-49 year old women
Suicide remains the leading cause of death for men aged 35-49, accounting for 13% of deaths.
Office for national statistics UK
Do you want the link?
Why do you say its not true?

deydododatdodontdeydo Fri 04-Nov-16 09:43:28

It's good to step back, take a breath and see that progress has been made.
So many posts on here about "we have gone backwards" and I think it's not true at all. There may be some "2 steps forward, one back" but surely things aren't as bad as 50 years ago.
I think people who have their own careers, flats, independent lives can forget that easily, 50 years ago would have been very very unlikley to be the case.

scallopsrgreat Fri 04-Nov-16 09:44:36

Because it is only true for a certain age range. Not for all men. It is inaccurate to say that.

I am not saying that this isn't an issue btw.

Iknowthisgirlcanx100 Fri 04-Nov-16 09:44:46

Its not a more equal society in the UK if men are not being allowed to share maternity leave (recent report showed that most women are reluctant to share because they want to spend time with their children).
Its not an equal society if we still expect the majority of men to be the main breadwinners (the YouGov survey shows how many men hate being forced into this role.
We will never have an equal society if you only look at the problems from one perspective.

Iknowthisgirlcanx100 Fri 04-Nov-16 09:48:10

I think it is being recognised in schools and some of the caring professions that young and middle aged men struggle to cope with the demands made on them by a society that still has very gender stereotypical attitudes to work and parenting.

scallopsrgreat Fri 04-Nov-16 09:53:37

Its not a more equal society in the UK if men are not being allowed to share maternity leave (recent report showed that most women are reluctant to share because they want to spend time with their children). Well I don't think the answer is to force women away from their children. And nor do I think it's wrong for women to want to be with their children. There are other solutions than having to share maternity leave - such as men having their own substantial parental leave.

I also think it is disingenuous to suggest that the reason that inequality in the workplace has occurred is because women don't want to leave their children. There are so many other factors.

Inthenick Fri 04-Nov-16 09:55:16

I've thought recently how lucky I am to be a woman. I've not face much if any discrimination or harassment (the odd cat call on the street) in my life and my career. I have the pleasure of being a mum which brings a lot of pressure and joy with it. My family have decided to be quite traditional due to the work my DH does (inflexible, long hours, emergencies) so I do the lionshare of running our home and minding the kids BUT (and this is a big plus) I have a well paid, 9-5 job that I do from home which affords me a fab nanny and a cleaner. I notice all the men in my life suffer from terrible stress and seem so detached, and all the women are quick, multitasking, alert and mostly happy people. I think this is hugely down to us women needing to both work so hard and fast juggling across home and sometimes jobs too and learning early on to rely on our friends and family to make things work. It leaves us with better support networks and greater capacity and sharper minds when older. Just something I mull over a lot recently seeing the difference in my mum and MIL and how engaged and aware they are with the world and their families compared to my dad and FIL.

I think inequality and discrimination for women is a massive issue.

But I also think that there are certain advantages we have from the way society is structured for women too. That doesn't mean we don't continue to fight hard for our rights though.

Inthenick Fri 04-Nov-16 09:59:11

Oh and I also would be a strong supporter of men's equal rights, somebody above mentioned paternity leave etc. I agree that men and women should equally have a right to that leave (and that the only deciding factor for who takes what portion of it is the couple themselves).

DeviTheGaelet Fri 04-Nov-16 10:00:02

Women becoming happier with being female over the past 50 years has nothing to do with males becoming unhappier. Happiness is not like a pie where if women tare more thanews their share, there is less for men.
I also don't believe men are unhappier. There hasn't been a survey like this for men. Increased suicide is awful and could indicate an increase in mental health issues in men, but it doesn't necessarily show men are becoming increasingly unhappy.
Finally it is totally offensive to refer to female suicide attempts as "a cry for help". Women are less likely to use violent means to attempt suicide, so chances of it being unsuccessful are higher. It's awful to insinuate that a lower success rate means these women were somehow not serious in their attempt.

SomeDyke Fri 04-Nov-16 10:04:02

In many (legislative) ways it is much better to be a woman and a lesbian now than it was 50 years ago (or even 15 or 10). But social attitudes and the necessary/resultant crisis of masculinity still to be gone through. My mums generation didn't have much of a choice about leaving work when they got married, later on women in the services had to leave when they got pregnant, whereas now we have some measure of maternity leave if you can get a foot in the door in the first place. But men haven't lost that much, or are in crisis at it or flapping about wondering what they are for if not to be the protector and the bread winner.

And then I read the news (another family annihilation in Leicestershire, and the Chad Evans cases), and we still have a long long way to go. But women are moving forward!

DeviTheGaelet Fri 04-Nov-16 10:04:02

Its not an equal society if we still expect the majority of men to be the main breadwinners (the YouGov survey shows how many men hate being forced into this role.
Totally misquoted the you government survey. The survey said more men feel pressure from being the main breadwinner. But seeing as there is a significant gender pay gap after children, men are more likely to be the main earner and so not surprising a higher proportion of them feel the pressure. There is nothing in that survey suggesting men are "forced into that role". That's bullshit.

growapear Fri 04-Nov-16 10:27:20

I wanted to ask a question if I might about the so called "crisis in masculinity" - what's the deal here ? Is all masculine behaviour considered bad ? When I think back to my childhood and things that "boys did" that girls didn't it would generally be stuff like play football (which is neither masculine or bad) and fight each other.

What I'm asking is - are there any "masculine" behaviours that are desirable as far as your concerned - or is it the case that we need to do away with the whole idea of masculine and feminine all together ? No doubt you're aware that one of the criticisms levelled at "feminazis" is that they want to stop "boys from being boys" and that traditionally "male" behaviours in young boys leads to them getting diagnosed as ADHD and given drugs to control their behaviour.

Pollsters, who spoke to 1,004 women of all ages, looked at their lives and changing attitudes, covering marriage, money, sex, family, work and appearance.

Unless the pollsters talked to a similarly profiled sample of 1,000 men, what we can conclude from this survey is that women may <insert conclusion> differently than in 1947, or that people may <insert conclusion> differently than in 1947. A time when everyone was recovering from a war; most people would have known someone who had died, or lost a loved one; there was still rationing; everyone was coping with the implications of fascism and the Nazi regime, start of the standoff between the US and USSR, it wouldn't be at all surprising if men also felt differently about being men, and what that means, than they do at the moment.

Nobody can legitimately draw any conclusions from this report about the impact of a decrease in legal and social restrictions on women's freedom upon male happiness, or (ffs!) rates of male suicide. Or, well, I suppose they could, but it would be somewhat revealing of their assumption that women exist to fulfil to men's emotional and sexual needs, hmm?

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