Did you know that women make only 80 cents for every dollar a man makes? This is known as the gender wage gap, and it has been around for decades. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the lifetime wage gap and try to answer the question: how many woman years does it take to equal 40 man-years?
Women are paid 82 per cent of what men are paid.
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average man will make $2.9M before retirement age, whereas the average woman will make only $2.4M. This means that the average woman will earn nearly $500,000 less than the average man over the course of her career.
Women have to work an extra 6 years to make what men do in 40 years, so the math would suggest that it takes 46 woman years to equal 40 man-years. But the truth is that, according to the statistics, women will never match what men make at 40 years old because our peak earning potential tops out at around 45 years of age.
The gap starts early.
There are many factors that contribute to the gender wage gap. One reason is that women are more likely to be in low-paying jobs or jobs with little room for advancement.
But another reason is that the gap starts early on in a woman’s career. In their first job out of college, women are paid just 82 per cent of what men are paid. This number only goes down as time goes on.
Part of the reason is that women are less likely to negotiate our salaries. In one study, only 57 per cent of women negotiated their salaries, compared to 80 per cent of men.
This may be because women are socialized to believe that it is impolite or unbecoming to negotiate. But whatever the reason, the result is that women start out at a disadvantage and never catch up.
Motherhood means a bigger wage gap.
This disparity is even greater for mothers. Mothers are paid 70 cents for every dollar a father is paid, a phenomenon commonly known as the “Mommy Tax.”
This is partly because women are more likely to take time off from work to care for children. This time out of the workforce can lead to a loss in earnings and advancement opportunities.
It’s not just that, though. Even when controlling for factors like experience and education, mothers are paid less than fathers. In fact, one study found that for every child a woman has, she loses about 5-10% of her earnings.
This is due to the fact that women are still expected to take on the majority of childcare and housework responsibilities, even when we also work full-time outside the home. This leaves us with less time and energy to focus on our careers.
The wage gap can hurt women long after they stop working.
The gender wage gap is a very big problem for women. Not only do we earn less than men over the course of our careers, but this disparity can have lasting effects long after we stop working.
This is partly because of the lower Social Security benefits that women receive due to having lower lifetime earnings than men of the same age. But it is also because women have less money saved up in retirement accounts, again due to having earned less over their careers. In fact, the median retirement account balance for women is 70% that of a man.
This means that women are more likely to live in poverty during retirement age.
What can you do about the wage gap?
There are many things that need to be done in order to close the gender wage gap. Women need to be given the same opportunities as men, and we need to be paid fairly for our work.
But it’s not just up to employers. Women also need to advocate for ourselves. We need to negotiate our salaries and make sure that we are being paid what we are worth. We need to demand equal pay for equal work. Hire This Mom is one website dedicated to helping women advance their careers and achieve fair pay.
We also need to demand that our partners take on an equal burden of childcare. And finally, we need to stop accepting it when employers mommy-track us or pass us over for promotion and start looking for a new job if we’re not being treated fairly.
Lastly, we need to support each other. We need to mentor each other and help each other get ahead. We need to create opportunities for each other so that we can close the wage gap once and for all and create a better future for the women who come after us.
The wage gap is real and women must be informed about it and take steps to mitigate its effect on our lives. We hope this article was helpful to you.