First Person: I Don’t Have to Be the Top Breadwinner in Our Household

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According to a recent story, women are now earning more than men in almost 25% of households in America. It is an interesting trend and this story does impact me because the financial world is changing in terms of how financial roles are perceived. However, I must confess that I am somewhat indifferent to this story. Sure, there is still a sense that the man is supposed to bring home the bacon in a Ward Cleaver sort of way, but I don't think about life in that way. For our house, it doesn't really matter who makes more money. In my household, I do not have to be the top breadwinner.

Shared roles

Life is different now. In my house, roles are shared. That includes chores, driving kids around, shopping and in this case, earning money. I suppose for some people there is an ego thing attached to earning more money and being the "provider" for the family, but that is not an issue for our house. Granted, I am currently the top breadwinner in our household from a strict financial standpoint, so perhaps I would feel differently if I were not. However, I do not think my attitude would change much. Today, life is much more about partnership.

Shifting trends

As noted (link) by the article, "Women earn more than men in almost a quarter of U.S. households, a huge leap from 50 years ago, when only a handful of women brought home more income, according to a study released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center." I don't know if this a good trend, or a bad trend. Life is changing, and society is shifting. Men and women are both having an impact on the household income. In some cases, I suspect that this may be a geographic issue. When you live in a place like Los Angeles, life can be very expensive. Two incomes are often the norm as it can be tough to cover the cost of life.

Covering the expenses

For our house, it is all about covering expenses. I frankly do not care who earns the money, as long as we can cover major expenses such as the mortgage, utilities, household expenses, gas and retirement contributions. The person that brings home the most money is basically an irrelevant factor. In our house there is no "my money" or "my account." Everything is shared. There is enough to argue about in life. Who cares which person earns the most?

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