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Do Women Have Bigger Hearts Than Men?

2012 October 2

Even though women over 50, across the board, earn less money than men and their younger counterparts . . . we give more. I guess our hearts grow bigger with each passing year.

The stunning study—Women Give 2012–was conducted by the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. Boomer (and older) women gave a whopping 89% more of their total income to charity! Are we amazing, or what??

But why, you might be asking yourself, would a woman who could take that money (or part of it) and pay for some fab new shoes or a trip to Paris, instead give it to a charitable cause (hopefully she can also buy the shoes!!)? There are, according to the experts, a few reasons:

  • We’re programmed to take care of kids, husbands, friends, parents, the world, so why wouldn’t we keep on giving?
  • Women are more empathetic and can get more easily moved into action
  • Men generally view charitable giving as a financial transaction, thinking about the tax write-off, whereas women are thinking about changing the world
  • Women often get involved with and support (or event start) charities when they’ve had a personal experience connected to the charity (breast cancer, for example)
  • Women are better at networking than men and the proliferation of social media has helped us to share information and stories related to charitable giving more easily, which is why the women’s philanthropic movement has been growing since the 1990s
  • We’re just super cool

As a boomer babe, I was so proud to read the report and know that I am part of a huge (and growing) demographic that has a huge heart.

Do you give to charitable causes? And if so, why?



4 Responses leave one →
  1. October 3, 2012

    We are all of the above and I hope also taking care of ourselves in the equation.

  2. Maureen Ardron permalink
    October 3, 2012

    As I read this, I thought, “How in the world did she get into my head and my marriage and how I actually feel?” I think we are definitely all programed to be caregivers and all things to all people. No wonder we’re all tired! Thanks for the great piece, Barbara! It’s nice to know I’m not alone!

    Maureen Ardron

  3. October 4, 2012

    I give to the Children’s Wish Foundation because the least a dying child deserves is to have a dream come true.

    When men were wired, the master electrician was on drugs.

    Wonderful piece, Barbara.

  4. October 9, 2012

    Women are more emotional than men. We easily cry for a hurting little bird, how much more to a fellow human being. Women are created with big hearts.

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