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Coronavirus: Women struggling with more anxiety and loneliness than men

·3-min read
Women reported significantly higher anxiety than men at almost every point between 20 March 2020 and 7 February 2021, data revealed. Photo: Getty Images
Women reported significantly higher anxiety than men at almost every point between 20 March 2020 and 7 February 2021, data revealed. Photo: Getty Images

Women are suffering from more anxiety and loneliness than men as a result of the pandemic, which has hit their well-being hard, latest data by the Office for National Statistics revealed.

The study said women were more likely to be furloughed, and consistently spent more time on unpaid childcare and unpaid household work throughout the pandemic.

At the beginning of the UK’s first lockdown in March 2020, women spent 55% more time than men on unpaid childcare. However, in September and October 2020, women spent 99% more time on unpaid childcare than men.

As a result, women reported higher anxiety, depression and loneliness than men.

Women reported significantly higher anxiety than men at almost every point between 20 March 2020 and 7 February 2021, continuing a pre-pandemic trend.

The difference between men and women's level of loneliness and depressive symptoms was largest from June 2020 onwards, implying that changes in levels of depression and loneliness were preceded by changes in anxiety.

And more men than women reported being not at all worried about the effects of the coronavirus on their lives.

Jess Brooks, founder of travel and tourism business Eternal Landscapes said "it has now been a full year without any income and our savings pot is empty. We’ve got nothing left. The uncertainty is emotionally brutal and we cannot make plans as we have no way of knowing when and to what extent our business will return.”

WATCH: Wellness guru Deepak Chopra on COVID's impact on mental health

READ MORE: Women may never recover from COVID-induced financial and social inequality

But women are trying to remain positive through it all. Trudy Simmons, founder of The Daisy Chain Group, which provides mentoring for women entrepreneurs, noted that "it's been an anxious and overwhelming twelve months for so many but as a community of women entrepreneurs, we have leant on each other for support, encouragement and that all-important motivation to keep going."

"The strength of our community has helped our members through the challenges of changing, growing and in some cases losing their businesses, often with no help or support from the government. The pandemic has been brutal but it has brought out the best in many people, too," she added.

And Ruth Bradford of The Little Black and White Book Project said her daughter was born at the beginning of January "and actually being locked down and have my husband work from home to help juggle her, our four-year old and my business has been a lifesaver."

"Plus, my husband has been able to spend so much more time with his daughter than if he was at his office. You have to be thankful for small wins like this," she added.

A recent study showed that almost half (47%) of women across the world have experienced financial stress due to the pandemic.

A global study from Avon reveals that 92% of women feel increased pressure over the pandemic, while 57% of women have increased feelings of doubt in themselves and 41% have lost confidence.

WATCH: Should I pay off debt or save money during the coronavirus pandemic?

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