Men vs. Women – When it Comes to Road Rage Bird Flipping, the Ladies Lead, Survey Shows
Well, in this story, perhaps “lady” is the wrong word. A study commissioned by Insurance.com reveals some very unladylike behavior behind the wheel. In fact, compared to men, women do far more than their fair share of tailgating, brake checking and cussing in front of the kiddos on the way to soccer practice and dance recitals. And while she’s going off all sailor-like, there’s a surprisingly high chance she shot somebody on the road a proper bird.
That said, men are no pillars of polite driving either. Turns out he’s more likely to spew obscenities with the in-laws in the back seat, and twice as likely to flash the high-beams at other drivers just for the mean-spirited heck of it.
So, who’s the guiltiest party in the survey of 1,000 men and women drivers (500 men and 500 women with children age 12 and under living at home)?…
- Honked at someone driving too slowly: MEN – 43 percent to women’s 39 percent
- Swore in front of the kids while driving: WOMEN – 44 percent to men’s 30 percent
- Flipped someone off while driving: WOMEN – 31 percent to men’s 27 percent.
- Brake-checked a car following too closely: WOMEN – 30 percent to men’s 27 percent
- Sped up significantly to prevent someone from passing you: MEN – 28 percent to women’s 25 percent
- Gone when it wasn’t your turn at a four-way stop: MEN – 20 percent to women’s 18 percent
- Tailgated someone on purpose because he or she was going too slowly: WOMEN – 21 percent to men’s 16 percent
- Driven to the front of a merge line, then swerved and cut in: MEN – 13 percent to women’s 11 percent
- Stolen a parking spot someone else was waiting for: MEN – 13 percent to women’s 9 percent
- Driven in the breakdown lane around traffic: MEN – 13 percent to women’s 8 percent
- Sped up to block another car with its signal on: MEN – 10 percent to women’s 8 percent
- Chased after a car that cut you off so you could glare at/flip off the other driver: MEN – 11 percent to women’s 7 percent
- Swore in front of elderly in-laws while driving: MEN – 10 percent to women’s 9 percent
- Turned on your brights at an oncoming car just to be mean: MEN – 11 percent to women’s 4 percent
- Keyed someone’s car: MEN – 7 percent to women’s 3 percent
- Dinged someone’s car in a parking lot and driven away: TIE – 8 percent
The good news is Mom’s probably not slinging expletive around the produce section with your toddler in tow, according to University of Hawaii Psychology Professor Leon James.
“Our social behaviors are for the most part conditioned by the social environment. Different rules apply to different places,” he says. “The car gives us the illusion of being alone and safe in our fortress. If we do something ugly or inconsiderate we can always get away. But this is different when standing in line with others who are right there next to us.”
The bad news? Your kids are watching you. And research shows they’ll eventually repeat what they see and hear you do when they grow up and get behind the wheel themselves. Oh – and good luck living down dropping the F-bomb in front of your mother-in-law.