Rebecca Kamm
Poking a stick at ladies' issues, pop culture, and other cutting-edge curiosities.

Rebecca Kamm: Marriage drives women to drink, and other news

New research suggests women drink more when they're hitched.Photo / Thinkstock
New research suggests women drink more when they're hitched.Photo / Thinkstock

T'was a good week in women's studies, this week! Here's my top three:

1. Married women hit the bottle because they're married

Seems there's something about marriage that makes ladies glug the booze! Research by sociologists at four different universities in the US has shown wives tend to imbibe more alcohol after they marry, while their husbands actually cut down.

How come? Do new husbands suddenly start belching and wearing socks during Special Times; such is their newfound confidence in your affections? Is it sadness because The Best Day of My Life is finished?

Probably not. Probably just a merging of habits and lifestyles, as Two Become One:

"Stable marriage curbs men's drinking yet is associated with a slightly higher level of alcohol use among women.

Our findings suggest that being married to a man who is more likely to drink creates a new social environment that may promote drinking among women," said a researcher.

HOWEVER, it's all even stevens in the end, because men drink more when they get divorced. BUT, married men still drink less than bachelors and widows. AND they will be happier in their marriages if they cut their alcohol consumption.

Also, this: "Men who fail to converge with their wives' drinking habits in marriage may set a trajectory towards divorce and continued heavy drinking."

2. Ladies look ugly at 3.30pm Wednesdays

Yes, what the headline said. This waste-of-space information was gleaned by self-tan brand St. Tropez, who commissioned the study to coincide with the launch of an anti-aging product.

The carefully extracted conclusion was reached by looking at ladies' schedules, and discovering that almost half of women - 46 per cent - will probably party with the bottle at the weekend. BUT AT THEIR PERIL!

St. Tropez skin expert Nichola Joss reports: "Processing the toxins in alcohol and sugar can put strain on the body. It can take up to 72 hours for the visible effects of alcohol to show, so the effects of drinking on the weekend may not present themselves until Wednesday afternoon."

Then, BAM - the pretty drains right away, and your hedonistic tendencies emerge through your suddenly haggard face. "It's fascinating that 3.30pm on a Wednesday is the time women look their oldest," thinks Joss.

Other findings: women are really stressed out on Mondays thanks to the "shock" of a new week. Then, over the course of two days, that shock turns you into a hag. ("The effects of a lack of sleep can take 48 hours to show on the face, so if many women sleep badly on Monday they will look their oldest on Wednesday.")

Thursdays mean sex, because that's when women want sex. (Didn't you even know that?!) And - because of all the sexing - ladies' cheeks glow by Friday and that makes them the happiest of all the seven days of potential haggardness.

3. The Daily Mail uses amazing stock imagery (also, female tycoons are out-earning male tycoons)

According to the DM, new evidence shows that "high-flying" businesswomen with their own companies are earning 17 per cent more than their male equivalents. Which therefore "...adds to clear signs from last year that women are earning more than men in some less well-rewarded areas."

The "sex breakdown" - which sounds like some new sort of urban dance, but sadly isn't - was gleaned from a study of 2000 high-earning clients and commissioned by Barclays Wealth and Investment Management.

Researchers looked at how much company owners paid themselves, so take from that what you will. I.e. that it's not really a sign that gender gap is closing, but a sign that women know their own worth. (And that just happens to take measurable form when they're in charge of their own salaries.)

As a final jab, the DM reports that: "State-backed studies have failed to find any evidence to back claims that discrimination among women workers leads to worse pay and a glass ceiling that prevents promotion."

So, just pay yourselves and problem solved! Ladies be worried over nothing!

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