Longer lives, living without a spouse and healthcare have mainly been seen as women's issues in the 65-plus age group, but new 2010 census figures show that men, thanks to medical improvements, are narrowing the gender gap.
Women still outnumber men by 5.18 million, but this is a drop from 5.3 million in year 2000. The female advantage in the overall population has narrowed, as there are now 96.7 men for every 100 women, an increase from 96.3 men for every 100 women in year 2000.
The Black community hears many complaints of Black women outnumbering Black men, but the reality is that when broken down in subgroups after combining all races, under age 35, there are more men than women.
After 35, due to deaths caused by stressors in the workplace, alcohol, homicide, accidents and other factors, the male population decreases and women become the new majority. At age 85, the number of women nearly doubles that of men.
But the gap has narrowed. According to the 2010 census, the amount of men 65 and older has increased by 21 percent. Women in that age group now only exceed men by 1.5 million, not 1.8 million as the numbers read in 2000. Additionally experts predict that these ratios will decrease even more over the next couple of decades.
"If current trends continue, men's life expectancy will approach that of women in the next few decades, creating more of a gender balance in the oldest age groups," Mark Mather, an associate vice president of the Population Reference Bureau told the Associated Press. "This has wide implications for family relationships in old age and caretaking, with more potential partners for older women."
Thanks to the evidence seen in these new numbers, if you’re a single female now, your chances of finding a compatible partner as you get older may not be as bad as you think.
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