“Women Minus Men”

By Gale Straub, She Explores

I recently received an email with the subject line “Women Minus Men.” It contained a question I get often about the Women on the Road interviews, though not always in so many words:

“Why are so many interviews of women traveling with men? Where are the solo women? Where are the women traveling with women?”

Below, is my (slightly edited) response. I feel that it’s important to share because I am always looking for women of varied backgrounds to contribute to She Explores.

Here goes:

“I’m answering you so quickly because this question is not a new one for me and it’s not one I feel great about. The short answer is that it is not on purpose that so many of these interviews include female travelers in relationships with men. Of the fifty women I have interviewed thus far, just seven [14%] traveled or are currently traveling on the road by themselves. You might be surprised to learn that it is difficult to find solo female travelers online that want to share that they are traveling. I have had several more contact me for an interview, but they haven’t provided answers to the questions I sent along. Perhaps it’s because they’re too busy. Perhaps they decided to keep their lives private. I don’t like to pester, so if they want to forward their answers along someday, I’ll be happy to publish them.

While I have a couple interviews to publish of solo travelers, it has truly been tricky finding and encouraging women to share their story while en route. I don’t know if it’s because of safety or numbers or otherwise. I hope over time it changes.

I will say that the spirit of She-Explores does heavily rest on the “she.” I ask women questions and they answer. Besides Women on the Road, I contact female artists and photographers and ask them to share their aesthetic, projects, and travels.  I hope She-Explores has captured their perspective, however they convey it to us. I am most concerned about what they create and how they interpret travel & the outdoors – whether they are gay, straight, solo, or with a companion.”

I hope that the Women on the Road interviews do not imply that a woman couldn’t hit the road solo. For me, all of the equations sum up to one woman’s experience.

Woman – Man | Woman + Man | Woman + Woman | Woman – Woman | = Woman

That said, She Explores would love to include more solo, partnered, and groups of women on the road for interviews. If you are one of these women, send us a submission here.

Thanks to everyone who asks questions, they make me think and keep She-Explores moving forward.

What would you like to see more of on She Explores?