Gender Gap in Well-Being among Veterans

According to a recent Gallup poll, female veterans of the U.S. military have a much better outlook on their lives than male veterans do. This finding comes from the survey of 353,561 Americans from Jan. 2 through Dec. 31, 2012 which is the basis for the data for the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index . Among the general survey population, 48,690 respondents indicated they were a veteran, either retired from service or honorably discharged from the U.S. military. Female veterans were far more likely to rate their lives as "thriving" (54%) than their male counterparts (44%). While female veterans' life ratings are nearly on par with women in the general U.S. population, male veterans' ratings lag behind other men by a difference of eight percentage points.

The relationship between gender and well-being among veterans under the age of 65 is significant, even when controlling for employment status, income, race, education, geographic location, and whether or not one has children. Male and female veterans aged 65 and older are about equally likely to be thriving and they are just as likely to be thriving as their non-veteran counterparts. Among those aged 18 to 44, female veterans are 11 points more likely than male veterans to be thriving. And, while female veterans are just as likely as non-veterans to be thriving, men are significantly less likely than men in the general population of their same age group to be thriving.
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