Apparently wokeness is much easier to accept in the abstract.To better understand how this relationship dynamic affects men, we interviewed three whose wives or girlfriends earn more money than they do.Tereza Nemessanyi runs Microsoft’s east coast start-up divisions, could only date men who value her professional ambition.
I’m 6'4" and can’t play basketball to save my life. It’s always hanging over you that you aren’t the dominant one in the relationship. Years ago, I dated a woman who made much more than me, and it caused us to break up.Not because of the emotional toll it took on us, but because she wanted to have a family, and I wasn’t making enough yet. She was a single mom, with a college degree and a job as a nurse practitioner.Doucheberg, to protect the guilty, incessantly dropped hints about how rich he is. When the check came, he put in enough cash to cover his cocktail and part of the tip. I thought, “It’s not like I’d sold heroin to fifth graders!He went so far as to pose a rhetorical question: “So, how much money do you think I make? As a starving artist, I’m more likely to win the lottery than experience perks like a 401K. Whatever the exact sounds uttered, my (lack of) revenue was a deal breaker. Doucheberg cleared his phlegm, he muttered, “That’s irresponsible. ” But once I got over the rejection, I understood his concern.We’ve been married 15 years, and a couple of times I left jobs I loved for ones that paid more money. Before I went back to school, we were having sex two to three times a week.
In my defense, this was during the 2008 financial crisis, when we had two kids to care for, and my wife and I both lost our jobs, then our home, and then had to file for bankruptcy. After a couple years in school, it was down to the obligatory two times a month. She made 0,000 and used her income as a means of control. She’d make snide remarks about me not earning any money.Income disparity is a critical issue in romantic relationships and gender remains part of that equation.Arikia Millikan, who is single and the founder of the tech site Lady Bits, explains that women should be taken care of financially “by a society that enables their success, not by a partner who singularly determines it.” Though many people agree that we should do whatever we can to correct income disparity, it’s probably going to be at least a generation before men and women are approaching full economical equality.So I spent a large portion of my life actively trying not to be like him. I do a job I enjoy, and I don’t have to look for the bigger, better, riskier, higher-paying job. So I went back to practicing law, and the dynamic improved.I’ve never had a traditionally male outlook on life. If anything, I’ll occasionally brag to my buddies, “Hey, I’ve got a sugar momma.”My wife has always earned more money than me, and for a while it absolutely killed our sex life. I’m a trial lawyer now, but from 2006 to 2016 I didn’t make a dime. But I still wouldn’t recommend having your wife earn more than you.As women achieve greater financial independence, I hope that we don’t merely switch the script, but write new ones.