Okay then, time for an update. Credit where credit is due and a climb down from me. In the last couple of weeks I've operated more and more frequently locally and it has been brilliant. I've engaged in some fascinating debates, spoken to some lovely people and, cannot fault my colleagues locally. It seems what I had initially was a good dose of unpleasantness all at once and that lead me to feel a bit hemmed in and beleaguered. Since then, I couldn't be happier. Perhaps negatively reviewing the entire hobby after a couple of months of participation was not my brightest move. Glad I was wrong. So I'm going to have another stab at answering the question.
Most of the girls I know are joined at the wrist to their cell phones. With pricing plans and whatnot providing easy global communication for little money, combined with VoIP tech being readily available to most tablets and phones, I guess the appeal of Ham radio as a tool of communication only, seems a bit ridiculous to most women. Of course it isn't that end product that solely appeals to licensed enthusiasts. The electrical engineering, the excitement of good propagation and landing global contacts (and I use that expression deliberately because the appeal of HF operating strikes me as a lot like that of fishing), the sometimes competitively technical discussions, time consuming home brewing, the attention to detail, etc., doesn't immediately impress women. In purely pragmatic terms, it is expensive, ugly (antennae are a work of art to me but nobody I know agrees with me), dangerous, fiddly, time consuming and a pre-existing boys club, when compared to a straightforward texting session or chinwag with the lasses on a phone.
Unfortunately this will always be true. No matter how often I regale my girlfriends with stories detailing how advanced technology owes a great deal to pioneering radio amateurs and how lovely it is to be accepted into a hobby with operating codes of conduct and manners (notwithstanding my last comment on the subject), they just smile and change the subject. The two most technically gifted engineers I know are women (one of whom worked for a cell phone company repairing microwave circuits and before that fixed radar equipment for the Ministry of Defence) just don't get my enthusiasm. So I'm not convinced by the argument that women's brains are not wired up to be technical. It's a question of women just not being that turned on by that which doesn't produce a better end product than existing equipment (a good reason, I reckon for high divorce rates too - heeeheeeee).
Now given my climbdown from my previous comment, let a single one of you gents make a remark about women and mood swings and I'll be happy to escort you to the emergency room to have my Baofeng surgically removed. Joking, of course