How Safe Do Women Feel? A Survey Done By Parry – The Women’s Safety App
As a women’s safety app, we believe helping women feel and stay safe should be one of the highest priorities. In order to better understand when women feel the most unsafe and how often (frequency), we asked women aged 18-45 their thoughts directly. We kept the survey simple with the initial questions gathering the participant’s first name and birthday (for age). We also only surveyed women in the United States as Parry is also based in America and we wanted to keep the variables to just age and frequency.
Parry surveyed 3,771 women and asked them “how often are you in an awkward or uncomfortable situation? (It could be bad dates, creeps approaching you, traveling alone, etc.)” with the options, “never“, “Sometimes (once every few months)“, “regularly (2+ times a month)“, or “often (1+ times a week)“. We then followed that question up with, “if you answered “sometimes” or more frequently for times you felt awkward or uncomfortable, which situation are you most frequently feeling that way?”. The answer field for that question was fill-in-the-blank so the participants could put whatever situation(s) they wanted.
The answers were surprising in a lot of ways but also sadly familiar. The way we will explain the answers is by first sharing how often all the participants were in awkward or uncomfortable situations (the first question), and then what factors caused them to feel that way. We will then break up the answers by age groups from 45-35, 34-25, and 24-18 years old to explain each age group’s answers to give further context of different generations. **We are not including any names for privacy reasons and the participants were told their answers would be used in a blog and other publications to educate anyone interested.**
Overall Data For How Often Women Feel They’re In Awkward Or Uncomfortable Situations
For all age groups (18-45), the following percentages represent the breakdown of how the women responded to the first question of the survey which was, “how often are you in an awkward or uncomfortable situation? (It could be bad dates, creeps approaching you, traveling alone, etc.)“. We rounded the percentages to the nearest whole number.
- Never – 4%
- Sometimes (once every few months) – 38%
- regularly (2+ times a month) – 26%
- often (1+ times a week) – 32%
Of the women surveyed, 58% said that they felt awkward or uncomfortable (combining the “regular” & “often” percentages) two or more times in a month! We all want to feel safe and live our lives without worrying whether someone is going to make us feel uncomfortable. Having two or more uncomfortable or awkward experiences in a month is too many in our opinion. We here at Parry were also surprised at how few people felt they were never in an awkward or uncomfortable position. Before the survey, we speculated that at least 10% of the people surveyed would feel they are never in uncomfortable or awkward situations. We will next share the reasons for that discomfort, but with the subjective nature of the question, we thought that more women would vote “never” for feeling awkward or uncomfortable.
Which Situations Caused The Discomfort Or Awkwardness? All Data
When it came to how often women felt uncomfortable and the situations that caused it, there are varying reasons but with a common thread. Of the women who said they experienced awkward or uncomfortable situations “often (1+ times a week)”, the word “creeps” came up quite a bit. The answer box was fill-in-the-blank so we had one-word responses along with sentences for reasons why. The one-word and short answers were generally “creeps”, “uber rides”, or “being catcalled” for the reasons women often felt awkward or uncomfortable. Due to the frequent nature of these situations, we speculate that these women are either commuting frequently, whether that be for work or otherwise or are out socially. Again, because we kept the survey short, these can only be assumptions. Regardless, we at Parry were unfortunately not surprised by these responses.
The answers that involved a sentence or longer for “often (1+ times a week)” involved specific information to the participant’s situations. Answers like “working late and going to my car because of (insert personal situation here)”, and “traveling by myself or enjoying time out with just myself (to do varying personal things)” were amongst the most frequent responses for those.
For the participants that answered “regularly (2+ times a month)”, the short answers were once again mostly populated with “creeps”, “strangers approaching me”, and “men following me shopping”. Interestingly for this frequency, we saw answers pertaining to gay couples and their safety. We had several participants in this frequency explain that “personal space was violated when people learned I was gay.” One participant recounted how they were roofied at a party while with their partner, and that being out at bars, in general, has caused several uncomfortable situations. Between the “often (1+ times a week)” and “regularly (2+ times a month)”, “creeps” and “traveling alone” created the most frequency for awkward or uncomfortable situations.
The participants that answered “Sometimes (once every few months)” once again mentioned “creeps” the most, along with “shopping alone” and “traveling”. As a women’s safety app, we are not surprised that “creeps” and “shopping/traveling alone” are amongst some of the most cited answers. As far as speculating why some women experience more of those situations than others, there are so many factors to consider. The bottom line is that ALL women should never have to feel unsafe, which is why we created Parry in the first place.
Age Groups & The Frequency They Experience Uncomfortable Or Awkward Situations
For the last part of this article, we wanted to share how often age groups experienced awkward or uncomfortable situations. We want to show the differences in age for clarity in interpreting the results. First, we want to share the percentages of each age group that participated in the survey. Again, we rounded to whole numbers.
- Women 35-45 years old: 43%
- Women age 25-34 years old: 34%
- Women age 18-24 years old: 22%
Those results mean that out of all the women that took the survey, 43% of them were 35-45 years old, 34% of them were 25-34 years old, and 22% of them were 18-24 years old. Of those women, here are their frequencies of feeling awkward or uncomfortable (again, rounded to whole numbers):
- “Never” –
- [35-45] – 0%
- [25-34] – 5%
- [18-24] – 8%
- “Sometimes (once every few months)”
- [35-45] – 52%
- [25-34] – 28%
- [18-24] – 25%
- “regularly (2+ times a month)”
- [35-45] – 26%
- [25-34] – 28%
- [18-24] – 25%
- “often (1+ times a week)”
- [35-45] – 22%
- [25-34] – 39%
- [18-24] – 42%
Looking at that data we can see 0% of people aged 35 to 45 felt they never experienced awkward or uncomfortable situations. 5% of the 25 to 35-year-olds surveyed never felt they got into awkward or uncomfortable and 8% of the 18 to 24-year-olds surveyed said they never felt they got into awkward or uncomfortable situations. Interestingly, 42% of the people surveyed aged 18-24 said they experience awkward or uncomfortable situations more than once a week with 39% of the 25 to 34-year-olds surveyed feeling the same way. The highest percentage of people that felt they were in uncomfortable situations “often” was 25-34 year old women. Women 35-45 surveyed had their highest frequency in the “Sometimes (once every few months)” category which was interesting to see as well. It seemed the older the participant, the less frequently you felt in awkward or uncomfortable situations based on our data.
Ok, to bring this data full circle, let’s summarize. Of the women who took our survey, 43% of them were 35-45 years old, 34% of them were 25-34 years old, and 22% of them were 18-24 years old. Out of all the women surveyed, 4% of them never got into awkward or uncomfortable situations whether that be creeps/strangers approaching them, feeling uncomfortable traveling alone, or shopping/getting gas/socializing. 38% of women surveyed said they sometimes get into those situations and 58% of women surveyed said it regularly or often happens. Combined, 96% of the women surveyed said that they got into uncomfortable or awkward situations at the very least once every couple of months. I don’t know about you, but I would prefer to be in the “never” category. However, we know that’s not the world we live in despite wishing it were the case. Parry was made to help create an exit strategy for the times you feel awkward or uncomfortable while allowing you to have your location sent to your emergency contacts for that added layer of safety before that situation could escalate.