Women Friends are Better Friends

The Justice Department now seems to be saying that prison rape accounted for the majority of all rapes committed in the US in 2008, likely making the United States the first country in the history of the world to count more rapes for men than for women.

Christopher Glazek

Women receive prison sentences on average only about half as long as men, and about half of that advantage is due solely to gender bias.1

Hat tip to Scott Alexander.

Men are more likely than women to say that their best friend is their spouse. Four in five women say their best friend is another woman.2

If men do benefit more from marriage, this may be because women serve as better confidants than do men.6

Don’t disclose anything to men. Gotcha.

Well-being of a sample of patients depended on the percentage of women in their networks, providing social support.3

The best predictor of not being lonely is the frequency of interaction with women; time spent with men made no difference.4

Perhaps Sartre should have written, “Hell is other men.”

In several studies (including a Korean sample), women also have shown higher profiles on personal growth relative to men.5

Women smile more often than men.7

For more, check out this essay.


  1. Sarnikar, Supriya, Todd Sorensen, and Ronald Oaxaca. “Do you receive a lighter prison sentence because you are a woman? An economic analysis of federal criminal sentencing guidelines.” An Economic Analysis of Federal Criminal Sentencing Guidelines (June 2007). IZA Discussion Paper 2870 (2007).

  1. Myers, David G. Pursuit of Happiness. HarperCollins, 1993.

  1. Hall, G. Brent, and Geoffrey Nelson. “Social networks, social support, personal empowerment, and the adaptation of psychiatric consumers/survivors: Path analytic models.” Social Science & Medicine 43.12 (1996): 1743-1754.

  1. Wheeler, Ladd, Harry Reis, and John B. Nezlek. “Loneliness, social interaction, and sex roles.” Journal of Personality and social Psychology 45.4 (1983): 943.

  1. Ryff, Carol D., and Burton Singer. The role of purpose in life and personal growth in positive human health. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers, 1998.

  1. Argyle, Michael, and Maryanne Martin. “The psychological causes of happiness.” Subjective well-being: An interdisciplinary perspective (1991): 77-100.

  1. Fox, Kate. “SIRC guide to flirting: What social science can tell you about flirting and how to do it.”

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