A recent article in the New York Times titled “Putting Money on the Table” addressed the growing trend of women who make more money than the men they date.The article cites that the reason for the gap is education.”53% of employed women were college graduates as opposed to 38% of men.”According to the women interviewed, many men are uncomfortable with dating women that make more than they do.
Given the statistics, however, I project that this phenomenon will not be a short-lived.Although, while traditionally it is okay for women to be dependent on men but still taboo for the reverse, women increasingly have been assuming the role as primary financial provider.
What I find in my own social circle–men and women ranging from ages 20 to 25–is that most of the women are actually comfortable with dating men who don’t make as much as they do and in some cases, are fine with the ones that don’t have jobs.I believe that in some ways this is a way for the women to assert their independence.Some argue that they are simply being a bit more compassionate in understanding that everyone’s (financial or professional) situation varies, and they would be comfortable with supporting them while they get on their feet.
Most of the men say they are comfortable dating women that make more than they do.A few even identified it as motivation to make more money.I highly doubt that this will be the case in years to come though; at least, I hope not for my own sake.
I will not even begin to pretend that I am comfortable with dating an unemployed man at any age.Complacency is never a good thing.On the other hand, at this point in my life, if the guy I was dating made less than me, I imagine that I would be okay with that as long as I didn’t feel like it was limiting.In the future, though, I expect my husband to at least make as much if not more than I do. I do not believe that is an unreasonable or shallow stipulation.My reasons are not as superficial as wanting to be showered with expensive gifts and vacations but because I, like Jade Wannell from the article, equate a man’s lack of income with a lack of drive and passion and again–complacency is never a good thing.