A new study by the Population Reference Bureau (a nonprofit that looks at population and other development issues) in the United States found that young American women, namely millennials, are poorer than their mothers and grandmothers and their well-being is declining.
The study revealed that these women were more likely to face mental health issues, and try to commit suicide as well as being shut out of high-paying jobs. The social and structural barriers are preventing these women from having a balanced lifestyle.
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The report by Beth Jarosz and Mark Mather took more than 14 parameters to measure “well-being” some of them being education, health, earning capacity and more. These were then compared to their mothers’ and grandmothers’ generation.
“We expected to see that there would be certain subgroups of women that would be doing much worse than others, but we were surprised to find that women overall were doing worse than the previous generation,” — Mark Mather, co-author of the report.
However, since this study came out, we realised that this is not only the case in America, but even in India, women are seeing a decline in their well-being. In India, this is because of the gender disparity. A report named Gender Inequality in Well-being in India that came out last year, stated that,
“The well-being of women was found to decline with age and when they were in larger families, unlike men. While upper-caste women were not found to be doing significantly better than Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe women, upper-caste men were better off.”
Millennials, in general, have been termed as the “urban poor”, meaning that they live in cities, have jobs but still don’t have any savings or assets. They live from paycheck to paycheck and spend money on things that are unnecessary, trying to keep up their lifestyle and appearance.
It is saddening to see that the well being of women of this generation is on the decline. India has a long way to go in providing equal opportunities for all, let alone just women. There are programs that are built to help women get employment, but jobs alone cannot ensure the well-being of a woman. There are a lot of factors that contribute to the well-being of a woman, and until all of them are addressed equally, we will not see any positive change in society.
Pic Credit: Glamour
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Read more stories by Nikhita Sanotra