In 2015, the Pew Research Center released a list of Places with the Fewest Men Per 100 Women. The number one country on this list was the Caribbean island, Martinique. Subsequently, seven former USSR countries in Russia were on the list with 86.8 men to every 100 women. You may wonder why all of these Eastern European countries are on this list and what it means for women in Russia. Let’s explore how this male to female ratio in Russia has affected its cultural, social and political stances.
According to Fordham Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, “the gender ratio at birth is consistent with the international average of 1.07 boys for every girl, but the similarities end there.” The 2010 census found a worldwide ratio of 50.8 females to 49.2 men.
Factors that can affect population include birth/death rates, agricultural change and immigration/emigration just to name a few. What phenomena is happening in former Russian that is creating such a steady decline in men?
In order to understand the full scope, we must start in 1991. During this point, the population of Russia was at its highest at about 148,538,000. This stands to be the highest population in Russian history. Interestingly, other USSR countries have similar stories.
Since 1991, the population has made a steady downfall where it now lies at roughly 144.5 million. After a time of “economic uncertainty” due to their political transition, the government encouraged its citizens to have fewer children. As a result, this has dropped the birthrate to a low of 1.38. Now, the birthrate has made a steady rise to 1.75, which almost meets the national rates.
There are about 12.05 births/1,000 births in Russia while it is an estimated 12 deaths/1,000 deaths. So what creates the male to female ratio in Russia if there is a .5% growth rate? Let’s dive into the cultural factors that affect the male population in Russia.
Russia is located between Europe and Asia, giving it both eastern and western cultural influences. Eastern culture usually refers to maintaining tradition and philosophy passed down over time.
You can see eastern influences in Russia through the holistic views on family. They stress family as the most important thing, as it trumps personal advancement. Western culture encompasses individualism and democracy. This can be observed in the modernization of the country.
Gender roles play a large part in Russian society. Russian women are taught at a young age to value having a family and being the best mother/wife. They are expected to clean, cook and tend to their children. You can learn more about Russian women here.
Russian men are associated with extreme masculinity. They may come off as cold and self-involved. As a result, a Russian man may not want to help with housekeeping or children.
Though they may be seen as cold, they are usually very chivalrous. Russian men always pay for dates, open the door for women and carry heavy objects, just to name a few. They will defend their families to the end of the earth, going after anyone who has verbally or physically hurt them.
In their free time, Russian men generally enjoy fishing, hunting and, of course, drinking. You’ve probably heard the stereotypes of Russians being hard drinkers and binge drinkers. This is generally true.
In Russia, hard-drinking for women is disdained upon so they usually stray from vodka and drink more champagne (or lighter drinks in general). This is important because Russian women take health very seriously. According to the World Health Organization, 30.5% of all deaths in Russia are attributed to alcohol abuse.
The Honest Truth
Alcohol is the biggest factor in the Russian male to female ratio. Life expectancy for women is 77 while men have a much lower life expectancy of 67.
By the time Russian women reach 25 years old, the number of male counterparts begins to dwindle at a pace not found anywhere else in the world, apart from several other former republics of the Soviet Union, dropping to 0.96 males per 1 female in the 25-to-54 year old age bracket; 0.75 per 1 female in the 55-to-64-year-old age bracket; and 0.45 per 1 female among the 65-and-older population. –World Population Prospects,” by the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs
Life expectancy among men in the country steadily declines when they get into their mid-twenties. Alcohol has an effect on the accidents, cardiovascular disease and suicide rates. All three of these are leading reasons for the deaths of Russian men. In Russia, suicide rates between men and women is 5.5 to 1.
” …the aggregate link between alcohol and suicide…is quite marked in northern Europe, but weak or non-existent in south and central Europe.” Norström (1995)… differences in sensitivity of suicide rates to alcohol consumption may be due to the level of integration of alcohol into the national culture. His main idea was that heavy drinking and accompanying behavior are more accepted in wet drinking cultures, while similar behavior in dry cultures is more likely to be perceived as abnormal. –William Alex Pridemore
How Are Russian Women Affected?
Is this a factor for the reason why women desire marriage between their late teens and early twenties? There are about 10.5 million more women in the country than men which is why the competition for men is so strong.
The male to female ratio in Russia takes a large toll on its women. This can be attributed to why women are in competition with each other. Moreover, this is why society encourages them to dress up and tolerate unfaithful/abusive relationships.
Did you know that 1 in 3 marriages in Russia are plagued with domestic violence? Women often tolerate it as a way to keep their family together. This also goes with infidelity, as men are almost expected to cheat as a way to show their manhood. On the other hand, cheating is viewed as an eternal sin for a woman.
Russian women are incredibly loyal partners and they make great wives. Many of them put up with a lot to achieve the most important thing in the world to them: a family.
The male to female ratio in Russia is indeed an issue. However, Western men match well with Russian women because they both have traditional values. Western men are able to give them what they are looking for. Online dating gives them the capabilities to connect and find love. Start chatting with Russian women today!