Are women happier when they have male bosses? This study has a surprising answer

If you find yourself feeling super unhappy with your boss, or even your entire work environment, it’s always worth sitting down with yourself and exploring what specifically is causing your dissatisfaction. After all, there are many valid reasons people feel unhappy with their jobs: Maybe you feel like you’re being overworked for the rate of pay you’re offered, or you feel like your work environment is not inclusive to your needs.

Sometimes, unfortunately, we dislike our jobs because we dislike our bosses, and that is always a tough situation to be in. Less often, though, do we tend to think about why we actually can’t stand our boss — because let’s be real, it probably goes deeper than the fact that their lunch smells terrible AND they get more vacation time than you do, right?


According to recent research from two separate data sets, including the National Longitudinal Study of Youth, which has tracked about 12,000 Americans since 1979, and the 2008 National Study of the Changing Workforce, it appears that women dislike their female bosses more than their male bosses. Meaning, in short, that women prefer having male supervisors to having female supervisors.



While this information initially has us seriously scratching our heads, we’re willing to bet this data has a lot to do with our perceptions of women in power and maybe even some internalized misogyny. Basically what these study results COULD mean is that as a society, we’re pretty much trained to regard women in power as “unreasonable” or “mean” or so on, even if a man in power displayed the same traits.

You know, how a man can be described as “powerful” or “having a commanding presence” but a woman with the same qualities is “controlling” or “nasty”? Yeah, that sort of latent sexism totally still exists, and women are not immune to it. Internalized misogyny is a HUGE issue, and can put women on opposing ends, even in the workplace.

While we can’t get inside the heads of the people who responded to this survey to figure out exactly what they’re logic was, it’s worth considering that women may view other women negatively because society tells us to distrust and judge women in power, even if we WANT to support one another.

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