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No, I wear the pants in this relationship!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by D26, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. D26

    D26
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    So I was out at a poker night with my brothers and some friends, and as we were playing, I took a big hit, and lost well over half my stack. Everyone at the table responded "it's no big deal. It's his wife's money anyway!"

    Why? Well, I am one of those new 'enlightened' males in a relationship where my wife makes more money than me. The reality is that this will never change throughout our relationship. She is a pharmacist, I am studying to be a teacher. Needless to say, I may not ever match her income.

    While it doesn't bother me that she makes more money than me, it DOES bother me that people give me shit over it. I realize that our relationship isn't the traditional "husband makes the money, wife stays at home" relationship. When we have kids, I'll likely be spending more time with them, as my schedule as a teacher will allow me too. I tend to do more around the house. The cooking and cleaning usually fall to me. My friends all seem to think that I should feel emasculated or something because my wife makes good money, and I'm usually called 'Mr. Mom' or they make jokes that my wife is the 'man' in the relationship, and that just made me think.

    The truth is that women are in the workforce much more, now. Women can make just as much money as men in a lot of jobs. Gender roles are changing, but it still feels like we're clinging to this archaic "The man has to be the breadwinner" system that just doesn't work anymore.

    Focus: Gender roles in relationships. Guys, could you date/marry a woman that makes more money than you? Women, could you date a guy that doesn't make as much money as you? What kind of affect can it have on the relationship? Are the guys good with becoming 'house husbands?' and are the girls willing to have husbands that stay at home with the kids while they work?
     
  2. Frank

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    Focus: I've been on both sides of the coin (sort of). My last girlfriend was an officer in the military while I was a broke unemployed college student. I did all the dishes, cooked what I could and generally played housekeeper for her. I Honestly didn't mind it a bit, she fed me and put a roof over my head which is much more valuable than what I was doing for her. At the time I was also poised to go into education so this would have continued.

    It was emasculating in the sense that if we were together for a longer period of time and she broke up with me, my lifestyle would have to take a huge step back financially, while hers could continue. Basically she held all the cards, luckily she dumped me before I got too comfortable.

    Still, I didn't have a problem being the domestic one in the relationship, she brought more to the table financially than I did, it just made sense.

    -Edit: My current situation is the opposite of D26's, I'm an actuary and she's in school to be a teacher, I like wearing the pants only because I know I'm more financially responsible than her.

    This is a really weird question. Objectively it makes total sense that the dad should be able to take care of the kids while mom goes to work, but I've never seen this work in practice.

    My cousin's wife was making about twice as much as him at her job but she couldn't handle being away, it reflected in her work, she was fired and is now a stay at home mom. She refuses to go back to work full time in her old field and wants to work in day care so she can be around the kids. It's tough to say whether this is a result of biology or the sense of entitlement society gives to mothers, but the stay at home dad thing certainly didn't work here. I should also note they had what appeared to be an extremely toxic relationship for years.

    Has anyone experienced or heard of a successful relationship where dad stayed home and mom went to work? I'm not talking about the woman being the bread winner, that can clearly work. But have you ever seen a relationship where the woman can cope with the husband being at home "relaxing" with the kids while she was slaving away at a desk job?
     
  3. uzisuicide

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    Later this year, I'm getting married to a woman who not only makes more, but works less hours, and will be able to spend more time at home should little demons ever come along. She's been a tremendous help in the purchase of my (our) house, my (our) motorcycle, our (her) new car, and she buys me nice clothes from time to time.

    Emasculated? Fuck that! I'm on the gravy train!
     
  4. Tyty

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    Someday I hope to be a doctor, and at which point I would probably be making some money, most likely more then my wife. But if she was doing something that she loved, and it made enough money to support our lifestyle I would gladly be Mr. Mom. Cooking is one of my passions and I could spend each day coming up with dinners for the family, cleaning, laundry, and all the other house chores. Most of my life I was raised by a nanny, my dad was a corporate lawyer and worked insane hours, and my mom had a professional life that kept her busy as well. It would be nice to impart a little more parental attention to my children.

    For the past 6 months I have been unemployed aside from some oddjobs, my girlfriend has been bringing in the big bucks with her dogwalking career, so I mostly hang out and do the cooking for her anyway, its a nice life.

    What would possibly hold me back from this lifestyle in the future is that I would never know if I could have done something else, a personal achievement, not that raising children isn't a huge undertaking in itself. But rather something that I had a passion for, I think that's one of the big reasons that women have been adverse to the idea of being housewives.
     
  5. mad5427

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    Who cares who makes more money. In a healthy relationship, as long as there is equal respect, for each other and self, it shouldn't ever matter.

    I currently make more money than my wife. A few years ago, she made a little more than me. When you pool it all together it's still a joint household income. We work together with what we have.

    We both are doing our best to maximize our earnings for the collective whole. I would love to be able to earn enough on my own so she could be at home with the kid full time, but it's not in the cards. We'll do the best we can and that's that.

    As long as we're both doing our best and doing what makes us happy, that's all that matters.
     
  6. Dread

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    Wife™ earns considerably more than I do, but not once has she looked down on me or whatever because of it. She's good like that. We've been splitting everything down the middle from the beginning.

    Except for the car. I never have to drive it. It's HER car, so she handles that, but I'm more than happy to pay for gas.

    And I've seen the complete opposite. The last woman who I was in a somewhat serious relationship with and didn't marry made slightly more than I did at the time and she loved to flaunt it. She was quite happy to point out from time to time that she was simply better than me. That got old fast.
     
  7. Dmix3

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    I don't know where all this talk comeS from that if a woman earns more, she wears the pants in the relationship. As long as I have this, I'll always wear the pants.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. The Village Idiot

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    My wife makes more than I do, and has since we've been dating. It's never been an issue for me, as I could care less. I suppose if you tie up your identity in how much you make, well, yeah, you'll be emasculated. However, I, for one, never saw 'being a man' as 'making the most money' but that's another thread for another time.

    Now that I'm currently unemployed, I run the household. I cook, I clean, I do the chores, I grocery shop, run the errands, take care of the dog and anything else that comes up. My wife works hard, so when she comes home she has dinner cooked for her, I do the dishes, and anything else around the house that needs doing because right now that's my fucking job.

    As to my friends saying anything to me about being 'Mr. Mom?' I highly doubt they'd say it to my face as I don't care about such things, and it wouldn't rile me up in the least, which is the whole point of busting balls. And ultimately I have no problem being Mr. Mom, I rather find it fulfilling to do shit around the house and make our home a better place.

    It's far more fulfilling than practicing law ever was.
     
  9. lust4life

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    I'm in a similar situation to The Village Idiot. I'm not working, but go to school full time and I'm the primary caregiver for our girls and manage the house. When I worked in sales, there were years where I brought in more than my wife, and years where she was the primary breadwinner, but neither of us ever viewed it as a competition but rather as a collective. What's mine is hers and hers is mine (except when it comes to the Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia FroYo in the freezer--I'll pimp-slap the da bitch if she touches it).

    It's a foregone conclusion that the career I'm currently preparing for will never pay close to what I used to make (nor what she presently makes), but at this juncture in life, that's not as important as it once was. We're happy with, and grateful for, what we have.
     
  10. Parker

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    Now it's not a scientific study, but Ask Men with their survey had like a 67% positive response on guys being okay if the woman made more.

    I'd be all fucking for it if I knew it was possible for me to jump into the game if necessary, but if it wasn't necessary I'd be happy to stay at home. I am an OCD cleaner, I've been dying to learn how to cook. Chores and errands would be easy with Peapod and Online bill paying. I'd take the little money I have and do some E-trading. Then I'd workout, watch + play everything in 3D (especially ESPN) and make sure when she got back to feed her and fuck her brains out.

    Sounds like the fucking life to me. Breadwinner or not, you only gotta "answer to her" no fucking awkward coworkers, arrogant micro-managing bosses, none of that shit. And...now back to work for me...shit.
     
  11. villagebicycle

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    Hmm, let's see here. Last time I checked, which was right before taxes this year, I raked in about 24k while my girlfriend more than TRIPLED that. Damn near quadrupled. Now, she is older, has her degree, has been with the company a few years, etc. etc. and I am 3 months away from my bachelor's degree and pretty broke paying interest on my student loans and bills and whatnot.

    Well, we split everything half and half when we're out together, like vacations and trips, food, booze, etc. I like her friends, they like me. She likes my friends, they like her. It just works.

    Now, what's the difference? I love what I do, and plan on continuing what I do after getting a "real" job. She fucking hates her job. It's stressful and soulless.

    So, hypothetically, if we stay together for years, there's a good chance that once I land a job that pays 50k+, she will either go back to school or transition to a better company which will inevitably pay less. This means I WILL WEAR THE GOD DAMN PANTS.

    I kid. I have no issues making less money. My mom makes slightly more than my dad, and they don't give a shit. As long as my future wife is happy, and I don't hate my life either, it's all good. It would drive me fucking insane if I had to stay at home all day though.
     
  12. Jimmy James

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    I've never been in a relationship where I made less than my girlfriend did, so I'm not quite sure how I'd react. I was raised extremely old-fashioned. My dad would come home from work, step-mom number whatever would have dinner ready and the house clean. I like to think I'd be okay with being a stay at home Dad, but I'm pretty sure I'd start grinding my teeth in frustration.
     
  13. Primer

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    I've been in relationships for both cases. In one relationship I was the bread winner by a vast majority, it was mainly because has a shitty paying job. Eventually, I had issues with the situation, not because she made less money than I but how she treated the money and me. Near the end, she was almost dependent on my income and would push me to spend it on stuff for her without much in return. Clothes, electronics, food; you name it. She rarely did anything around the house and contributed very little to the relationship.

    I've been on the other side of the fence, I'm no slouch when it comes to paying my bills and saving money, so it wasn't an issue. Mind you, all of those relationships, we were both financially independent of each other. It actually took me a while to get into the mindset that those women could actually afford to pay for dates we went on, which was a complete 180 from my other relationship.

    Interesting article on men in the family space; Swedish society actually makes it mandatory for men to take maternity leave. Personally, I'm all for equal rights on everything; if she makes more money, good of her, it's likely she worked very hard to get to that position. If we decide that I should stay home with the kids for nine months, or however long, then that's a decision I'll follow - It all depends on situation I guess.
     
  14. shegirl

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    I wouldn't care either way in regard to one being better or working harder than the other. Not working outside the home and raising children is a lot of fucking work though and often sold short because it's not a "paying" gig. I think that's bullshit and that it would be extremely straining and draining in different ways. Hell, at least the one working outside the home can leave the work crap at work. When home and family is the work where do you leave that shit? Nowhere. That would suck, not to mention that I'd go completely nuts staying home day in and day out. I'd end up eating my hair or something. I'm not exactly a nurturer anyway, go figure.
     
  15. pincinelly

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    It is fairly likely that my girlfriend will earn significantly more than me once she finishes her education in psychology (Masters and clinical year). I have no problem with her earning more than me, and I joke that I will be a stay at home dad as long as we hire a cleaner and a maid. But I don't think I could handle actually being a stay at home dad, I would go stir crazy not getting out of the house. As shegirl said at least you can forget about work once you go home for the day. Also I could get drunk and berate my girlfriend for not doing any "real" work, which seems like it would be fun. Luckily for me, my girlfriend want to be a stay at home mother (this is all way down the line).
     
  16. JoshP

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    Fuck yeah I could marry a woman who makes more than me, let her make 300K a year, better yet 1M a year WOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! Currently I just got out of the army after 8 years and am now going to college, my girlfriend of 3 years is a recent college grad (last May) and currently makes 60K a year. It's awesome, she just called and she is at the mall and is going to get me some new summer clothes. Do I care if she makes more than me? No. The fact of the matter is this, I want my wife as well as my self, make as much money as possible. Get a house paid off, save for kids college, and retire at a reasonable age, while having fun along the way. I don’t want to be working into my 70's...unless its some jerk off retired guy job to fill the days and keep active.
     
  17. Kubla Kahn

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    Making the most together seems like the logical thing to do. Though I'd take my old landlords set up in a minute. His wife, I assume her family had money, owned the bar and all of the rental properties he looked after. He basically collected the rent and worked as a handyman for all the properties. It was a sort of shared income set up. He worked for the company she owned I guess, Im not sure if she had another job but he did the bulk of the work for the rentals. He also organized all of the bars events, an Irish Pub, so he was busy with that around Saint Pattys day (if you want to call that work).

    I don't think they had kids but he was probably the most laid back guy on Earth. He once was going to show our place to new renters but plopped down on the couch to watch The Wonder Years with my roommate (our landlord was probably in his mid 40s). He let the prospective renters roam the house alone.

    I don't think he was a gold digger but I sure did envy his set up.
     
  18. Stealth

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    At the risk of being flamed ; read The Way of the Superior Man by David Dieda
     
  19. Dcc001

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    It's funny, because my career and my travels have been very non gender traditional (I just made that phrase up). I design stuff for residential housing; my educational background is in engineering and construction management; when I travel, it's typically alone and in the developing world.

    That being said, my views on the gender dynamic within the relationship are actually quite traditional. While I don't care one bit who makes more money when both partners are working, I'm a firm believer that one parent should stay home and raise the kids when they're small. I'd like to say I'm liberated enough that it doesn't matter which parent, but I know in my heart I'd prefer if my husband worked. Again, it just feels "right," as lame as that sounds.

    As to going stir crazy, no way no how. If I had the opportunity to became a housewife and have kids, I'd walk away from the typical 9-5 job without a second glance backwards and happily trade my current 'paid' labour for the grind of raising kids and running the house.
     
  20. Beefy Phil

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    Compulsive child labor from age 7 onward renders this problem moot.

    "We hire pituitary dwarves to fix all the watches, Mr. Jorgensen. Small hands, you know. Very precise."