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Why Do Women Usually Call Shotgun?

SS Member Image By drodriguez 01.16.10
Why Do Women Usually Call Shotgun?
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If you tend to hand over the car keys whenever you travel with your family then you are not alone.  A recent survey shows women are far more likely to sit in the passenger seat when riding with male household members.  According to sociologist, Pepper Schwartz, even the households that would label themselves as holding feminist values have men behind the wheel a lot more often than women.

A recent article from New York Times brings to light some statistics from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS) conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor regarding women and their habit of riding as passenger.  ATUS reports that women spend 29 percent of their time riding in cars as passengers whereas men spend only about half that, 14 percent.

One theory of why men may drive more is that they tend to work longer hours outside of the house than women and are alone in the car more often.  Families with higher incomes do not show as much of a gap with men driving more since each household member tends to own their own car.  But this doesn’t explain why when men and women are together, it is usually the man driving.  The 2001 National Transportation Survey reports men are three times more likely to drive than women when sharing a ride with household members. 

Do women just not want to be bothered by the stress of driving and decide to take a break when traveling with a male partner?  Or are women better navigators than men and take that role on when traveling with men?  Or is it something else entirely?

What do you think?

Do you tend to hand over the keys in your household and if so why?

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  • trishbos By trishbos
    01.27.10  

    I like to get my husband to drive as often as I can. With my husband working in another country I enjoy the break when he is home.

  • HJFinnie By HJFinnie
    01.27.10  

    I hate to drive, and love to talk to my husband. He likes it when I drive, but I like to be able to talk with him and not worry about the road. I gladly hand the keys over.

  • amariebrown82 By amariebrown82
    01.27.10  

    This one is so so simple! We hate to hear the fuss. My personal experiences are men sit in the passenger seat and complain about your driving the entire trip. So me, personally, I just let him drive to avoid hearing his mouth...lol!

  • stefaniek99 By stefaniek99
    01.26.10  

    My fiance and I are currently separated by a 5 hour drive. When he drives 5 hours to see me, I drive us both around for the rest of the weekend and vice versa when I drive to see him. In general though, he does like driving more than I do (he's an mechanical engineer!).

  • kaffetime By kaffetime
    01.25.10  

    My husband likes to drive so much better than I do. When we are together he always drives. It is the same when I am with my father in the car. But if I am traveling in my car with my sons or other men that are friends or acquaintances I prefer to do the driving. My daughter and her husband share the driving depending on which car they are using.

  • SmartMomsSaveMoney By SmartMomsSaveMoney
    01.24.10  

    My fiance always drives it never fails. He just grabs the keys and gets in the car before me and he drives like a paw paw it drives me nuts inside, but I don't say much. I don't feel it's worth fighting over so I let him do his thing. Sometimes I catch myself pushing on the floor board though. Like go go . ha ha

  • Sneefy By Sneefy
    01.23.10  

    We have 2 cars, they are not his and her cars they are our cars. whatever car is parked behind the other is what you take in the morning. 99.9% of the time when we drive together as a family I am driving, I have motion sickness. If I am a passenger I tend to watch ever single thing that we pass and it makes me sick. My husband could care less if he drives or not so I have always done the driving. When we are on long trips He will drive but I have to be sleeping (that?s the .1% of time he drives). Its funny this topic came up....about a month ago my son he?s 7 came home and said that they had a survey in the class about when driving with both parents who drives the car. My son was the only one that raised his hand for his mom. He was shocked to find out that most fathers drive all he has ever saw was me driving all the time he thought that was a normal thing.

  • Newfiekizzez By Newfiekizzez
    01.23.10  

    My husband loves it when I drive so he can pretend to be an announcer on a radio and read the signs as we go by them. Also, I get car sick with him driving because...again, he's trying to read the signs to "practice" that announcer voice. It works out for both of us that way. The only problem is that our boys are now trying to read the signs with him, sigh.

  • coreyhsmom By coreyhsmom
    01.22.10  

    i let my hubby drive when we go out because i am the one that has to take care of the screaming kids in the back seat and most of the time he is only in my car if awe are going somewhere far plus his backseat driving drives me nuts

  • Stephanie28w By Stephanie28w
    01.22.10  

    I would definitely say when we drive my fiance generally drives, he is and I'll admit a better more cautious driver than myself, and I feel safer that he drives.

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