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September 27th, 2009
07:05 PM ET

Are men happier than women?

Producer Eddie Williams was in the field this week asking "normal people" about the recent survey that highlights a trend : that men are happier than women.

The trend was the focus of Fredricka Whitfield's Saturday 4pm show. 

Eddie  made these observations on the shoot: "the feedback from the people we interviewed was eye-opening to me. First, we asked them to define happiness and 'having it all' –it was ncie to see so many people wanted to discuss the topic. Many said happiness is a case-by-case issue, but if there were a slight edge, men would be the most likely to find it."

What do you think?

Filed under: Anchors • Fredricka Whitfield
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Priscilla

    I am not surprised by the results of this study and agree with all of the reasons touched on in your piece for the unhappiness felt by women. I am a 48 year old working mother of 4 teens + lawyer and would only add that one dimension of female unhappiness may be attributable to the pervasive violence against other women both in the US and in too many other nations. Women suffer. Worldwide. Unfathomable injustices and pain. As women, I think we all carry some of that pain, for the woman every 4 or so seconds who is getting pummeled, raped, or murdered. I just wanted to add this dimension to the unhappiness meter that is tilting higher for women than men - as women, we can identify with their suffering but we seem unable to stop it. And the media pours out story after story after story of unspeakable crimes against women, and we turn the page. So on top of all of the other factors discussed on your show this weekend, such as the exhausting second shift for working women, please consider the negative impact violence against women has on the everyday woman. Thanks for great coverage this weekend.

    September 27, 2009 at 8:24 pm |
  2. J

    Of course men are happier overall. Women make 60 cents on the dollar in comparison; when jobs are cut, it's the women who are cut first; men get promoted ahead of women because "they have families to support", etc, ad nauseum. Of course they're happier! The good old boy network is alive and well. Women are still second class citizens in this day and age, just no one wants to admit it.

    September 27, 2009 at 11:35 pm |
  3. Wayne

    women have competed with men for at least 20 years on the same ground..they have lost horribly... no one has won society has lost ...many really sad women...what a social disaster

    September 28, 2009 at 12:56 am |
  4. Nunuv Yurbiz

    Women complaining is news? Women should just woman up and deal with it.

    September 28, 2009 at 1:31 am |
  5. E

    I think it is also possible that women today feel like it is OKAY to say "I'm not happy" than they may have felt 40 years ago. No one really cared if they were happy or not back then.

    September 28, 2009 at 5:02 am |
  6. William

    This is no mystery. The reason women are less happy than previous generations is the same reason society on whole has become so dysfunctional over the same time period: Women parted from the eons-old social contract of society, left the home and joined the workforce. This turned every aspect of nuclear family dynamics upside down. Women today who don't work outside the home are less happy because they are essentially isolated from female society.

    Feminists can claim what they we want, but the evidence does not support them. Women leaving the home and going to work has been very detrimental to our society.

    September 28, 2009 at 6:57 am |
  7. mary

    As a woman, I feel happy. Happiest when I put things in the order they were meant to be. God first. As too many women have stepped back from their obligation to themselves and those around them to nurture the way God intended, they have become less happy.
    You can't give your body to men, indiscriminantly, and then feel happy about it later. Yet all our media, TV and movies and books encourage the giving away of oneself, and it has had devastating consequences. It is time women reclaimed their lot in life. We were meant to be happy, happy women make the rest of the world happy - and no folks, drugs and alcohol happy does not make.
    Happiness comes from with-in - from our soul. Don't compromise your soul, and you too will be happier than your wildest dreams.

    September 28, 2009 at 8:11 am |
  8. Sara Hunt

    The expectations and demands on women today are greater than they were decades ago. When I was growing up, women were expected to catch a husband, raise a family, and do community work. Today they are expected to have a career, plus fufill their traditional roles. Women's liberation was supposed to give women more freedom and choice. It has rightly opened up the workplace to women, but at a huge cost to women. They still are more responsible (than men) for raising the children, doing the housework while trying to have meaningful productive lives, either at work or in the community. They are s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d.

    September 28, 2009 at 8:33 am |
  9. Trylon

    Rather than being =happier than women= I feel it is possible that men are =less unhappy= than women. For reference, would anyone like to guess which gender takes more anti-depressant medication?

    It is also likely that men and women are made happy or unhappy by a different list of things. Men are made more unhappy by unhappy women than women are made happy by happy men. Perhaps what we should be measuring across time is resentment of life.

    One of the most enjoyable references upon this subject is called "The Conquest of Happiness". It appeared in 1929 and was written by British philosopher Bertrand Russell. If it can be found in a good library, this book is still worth reading.

    September 28, 2009 at 8:33 am |
  10. hopeful

    Birth control commonly causes depression like symptoms. Like the tobacco industry, the birth control industry tries to conceal this and play it down for profit. More women use birth control today than decades ago. Think about what we are putting in our bodies. We should stop compromising the mental health of our women for the sexual gratification of men who aren't honest and virtuous enough to make commitments or uphold self control. Birth control didn't liberate women, it just makes it easier for men to use them and leave them hormonally imbalanced. No wonder so many women are unhappy.

    September 29, 2009 at 8:34 pm |
  11. Chuck Norris

    I agree that men are just less UNhappy than women. But that's because men don't do a lot of things women think are necessary. Women would be happier if they stopped doing just a few things: stop doing unnecessary things to get unwanted attention from men they don't want to get attention from, stop blaming other people and society for their unhappiness, stop expecting people to read their minds, stop looking for a man that "completes" them and focus on being complete themselves, and finally, stop eating so much.

    September 30, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  12. Happy

    I am glad not everyone in society thinks like William, otherwise some of us would probably be hungry and homeless. I hope if you are married your wife does not contribute to this 'detriment'.

    September 30, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  13. David

    "The good old boy network is alive and well" Sorry J, this is'nt the 50's. women can do pretty much anything they want.

    Are men really happier? could be. I know I'm much happier than a lot of women my age. And their pretty well off fiscally and healthwise.

    Sometimes I look back at how the bible said it was in the beginning and wonder. Adam was quite happy with the "simple" arrangement in the garden of eden. Adam was content. Then Eve came along making suggestions to "complicate " this simplicity LOL

    I'm just saying 🙂

    October 16, 2009 at 8:09 pm |