When I think about the difference between women and men, the first thing that comes to mind is childbirth. But, there are many fascinating facts about women that I bet you didn’t know.
March 8 is International Women’s Day. In honor of IWD, here are 10 female facts you likely aren’t aware of:
1.) In a recent study analyzing 11,000 men and women, the results concluded that women feel pain more intensely. Women also recover more rapidly from pain. However, the presence of the male hormone testosterone in a woman’s body helps to increase pain threshold; on the other hand, the presence of female hormone estrogen in men lowers their pain threshold. Meanwhile, estrogen in a woman is said to be one of the reasons they have such high pain tolerance.
2.) Women evolved since prehistoric days, when she would only menstruate 50 times in her lifetime. Today, on average, a woman will spend 3,500 days of her life menstruating. She will likely have her period 450 months within her life span. Early lunar calendars were formed as a result of a woman’s menstrual cycle and length.
3.) A whopping 91 percent of women are unhappy with their bodies and resort to dieting. Eighty percent of women feel media plays a role in encouraging body image insecurities, and 13 percent of teen girls between the ages of 15-17 acknowledge they have an eating disorder.
4.) Forty-three percent of women choose to leave their jobs in order to raise their children, regardless of the time they invested in higher education. Meanwhile, the number of women taking maternity leave hasn’t changed in two decades. Additionally, one-quarter of women who give birth return to work less than two weeks after giving birth. Currently, the U.S. is still ranked as one of the world’s worst countries for paid maternity leave.
5.) The gender pay gap is real. As of 2016, women get paid in the U.S. on average just 80 percent of what men get paid. This means men get paid 20 cents more for every dollar earned despite working for the same exact job and hours as women.
6.) The #MeToo movement that went viral in 2017 shed light on sexual harassment reaching 85 countries. According to a 2016 statistic, at least 320,000 incidents of sexual assault and rape took place within the United States that year alone.
7.) One CDC study revealed that 16 percent of women between the age of 18-44 reported feeling “exhausted” and “very tired” compared to 9 percent of men the same age who say the same. According to a Psychology Today article, this is primarily due to women taking on a lot, such as juggling career, motherhood and more.
8.) In a research study of more than 2,000 heterosexual couples, 70 percent of women initiated divorce compared to men.
9.) According to the U.S. Department of Education, there are millions more women in college compared to men, who are trailing by 2.2 million. In fact, by the year 2026, it is estimated that women will outnumber men in college by 57 percent.
10.) Some studies continue to conclude that there are men out there that remain threatened by intelligent, successful women.
The Bottom Line:
I didn’t understand the many hats I would wear until I became a mother. Juggling career and parenting in a country that is considered one of the worst in the world for maternity leave isn’t easy. It’s also difficult combatting gender pay gap issues where some women are forced to choose between family and career. After all, childcare isn’t cheap and precious time with your child can’t be bought.
Whether single or married, women and women rights have definitely come a long way. But improvements still need to be made in terms of pay equality, better maternity leave, more sexual harassment awareness—all of this matters. Trust me, the juggle as an ambitious woman who is a mom and wife, it’s real. At the very least, we should all think about the special women in our lives and appreciate her for her effort and sacrifice.
For more on International Women’s Day, feel free to read the below participating bloggers. Note: Links will be updated as posts get published.
- Swati Kadam: Womenarrior
- Ipuna Black: Collaboration with a Purpose: Dedicated to Women Worldwide
- Mylene C. Orillo: To All Women Who Made a Difference in My Life
- Barb Caffrey: A Woman’s Work Is…Everything?
- Divyang Shah: Women In Life
- Tajwarr Fatma: Let’s practice Women’s Day
- Jane Love: Thoughts of 21st Century Teen Girls on a Woman’s Role in Society Today
- Sadaf Siddiqi: Celebrating Women Worldwide
- Sonyo Estavillo: #InternationalWomensDay: 10 Interesting Female Facts You Might Not Know! #PressforProgress
- Nicolle: Collaboration with a Purpose: Dedicated to Women – Issues Women Face Today