According to a survey by BettyConfidential.com 100% of women agree that making more money then their husband hurts their marriage. What? Seriously? Wow.
Since Lee is a stay-at-home dad, I obviously make more money than him. In fact, even when he was working I made more money than him. I think when we were first dating was the only time he probably out-earned me. I was working at Wendy’s and he was a cook/sometimes waiter at a fancy restaurant in town.
I don’t feel like me being the breadwinner puts a strain on our marriage. I think it absolutely works in our marriage. I love having Lee stay home with the kids. In fact he’s been looking for a full-time job and I’ve been trying to push him to just work part-time so he will still be here when the kids get home from school and be able to take them to all of their after school activities.
Before he was a stay-at-home dad Lee worked six days a week installing cable. Now that he’s been home more (a lot more) he has really bonded with the kids. Not that he wasn’t a good father before, but now he’s a great father. He knows what size the kids wear. He knows what their favorite meals are. He knows exactly what toys they are in to. He knows what shows they are watching on television. He knows who their friends are. He’s become much closer to the them. And them to him. It’s been awesome watching their bond grow tighter over the last five years.
Of course, we occasionally have arguments about who does what around the house. I think every couple does. I think even if he worked we’d still have some of those arguments. But in the end we just figured out who does what. When we are clear about our chores there is less arguing. Our teen boys do a lot of the cleaning. The little kids are responsible for their rooms. Lee is in charge of the “man” chores (as I call them) which includes mowing, fixing things, changing light bulbs…things like that. I’m in charge of laundry (which I have since outsourced some things — like folding — to the kids). I do the majority of the cooking while Lee takes over one or two nights a week.
Lee and I rarely fight about money either. I pay all the bills. Lee doesn’t have an allowance or anything, but he does call me to ask about large purchases such as to say, “Hey I’m low on gas. Is there money in the account to fill up?” I then either say “Yes” or “No, put it on your credit card.” [Isn't is sad that filling the van with gas is a large purchase now?]
When Lee first started his job as a stay-at-home dad he was pretty leery. Stay-at-home dads kind of have a bad wrap in our society. They need to be manly and take care of their woman. It’s something guys need to get over. It’s something women need to be more accepting off. Why can’t a guy be a stay-at-home dad? Why is it only a woman’s job?
I don’t think the wife being the breadwinner is what’s putting the strain on the marriage. It’s just bring out other issues you have that you aren’t addressing. It could be your husband’s jealousy. In that case deal with that issue. It could be chores. Set a clear plan of who does what. It could be money. Create a budget. Do whatever it takes to work on your marriage and embrace the positive things about your situation.