Women Today Are More Drunk Than Ever

By Anna North


New research shows that women born after World War II are more likely to binge-drink than those born in previous decades. Why are ladies getting drunker than they used to?

According to the Huffington Post, a new review of existing research has found that American women born post-1945 have higher rates of binge-drinking than their foremothers, and that women’s rates of overindulgence are approaching men’s. However, the study didn’t find the same effects in Europe or Australia. What’s the explanation for this phenomenon? Addiction therapist Paul Leslie Hokemeyer says, “After World War II, the role of women changed. More women entered the work force, but they were also expected to be good mothers and wives.” So they “latched hold of alcohol as a coping mechanism because it is readily available and socially acceptable.”

It’s possible that women are drinking more because they’ve entered the workforce but are still faced with the stresses of a “second shift” at home. And maybe European women don’t face the same stress because they have better social safety nets. It’s also possible, though, that getting drunk has simply become more acceptable for women in the years since WWII. And while somebody’s sure to claim this is a negative consequence of feminism, it may just be a side effect of increased equality. It’s a good thing if women feel less pressure to be ladylike than they used to, and if they’re able to go out to bars with their friends without being judged. If this leads to binge drinking, that’s not an argument for a return to pre-Rosie the Riveter times. It just means we need to recognize that alcoholics come in all genders, and tailor treatment and screening accordingly.

Binge-Drinking Among Women Is Up: Study [Huffington Post]

Image via REDAV/Shutterstock.com

Originally published on Jezebel. Republished WITH PERMISSION MOTHERF*CKERS.

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32 Comments

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    Maybe it’s just me but I also feel like gay people drink more than straight people….at least that’s the impression I get from my numerous “research trips” to the pub. Although maybe we just have more places to be and fun to be had, and most of that fun involves drinking, I dont know!

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      Seeing how a lot of gay culture is surrounded by alcohol/bar culture, I don’t find that surprising. Any walk down Market Street the closer you get to Castro will show you how many billboards are advertising alcohol to a gay demographic.

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      I have a different theory: that where I live at least (Germany) the combination of going out and drinking fits more to the older generations of the queer community than to folks in their 20s. I’m older, and my theory is that dutch courage helped many of us be comfortable with being gay in public (and bars/clubs used to be one of the easiest ways for us to find one another) but that the next generation younger than me doesn’t need to rely on that crutch so much any more. Lots of my mates either don’t drink at all or if they do, very moderately. Good for them, too.

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        Well here (Venezuela) it isnt so much about being gay or straight, or even gender, i think is our culture… We drink all the time! I have friends from USA and when they come here they make jokes about it, something like “Venezuelan people say ‘oh its too rainy we better stay home and drink some rum cause its cold’, and the next day ‘oh its sunny nice to go to the beach and drink beers’ xD”

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