A study of 18 maritime disasters (ship sinking’s) over 3 centuries covering the fate of 15,000 people of more than 30 nationalities overturns widespread belief that women and children got off the boat first.
Captains and crew survived at a higher rate than women, children and male passengers.
Women do no better even if they represent a small share of the passengers on a sinking ship.
This leads the National Academy of Sciences that conducted the study to perhaps tongue-in-cheek say this human behavior can be described by the “expression every man for himself”.
More than gender wars, this study underscores the importance of understanding that when faced with a life or death situation, most people will take care of themselves first.
In friendships – even strong ones – it’s helpful to remember this human condition.
And it reminds everyone that they are ultimately and always in charge of caring for their own needs first.
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