Women Who Out-Earn Their Male S.O.s Are Sharing How It Affects Their Relationships
"The only comment he has ever made concerning my salary is that I should be getting paid more for all the toxic and misogynistic crap I put up with."
So there's this stereotype that men get turned off by women who out-earn them. But as a millennial who grew up with a stay-at-home dad and a working mom, I've never really understood it. Plus, with the cost of living these days, it just doesn't make sense to me to be bummed out about having more money in your household. Shouldn't it be the more, the merrier?
1. "I make 3x the amount my husband makes. He thinks it's the sexiest thing in the world."
2. "I've been married for 20 years and always earned more than my husband. Guess what. It's never been an issue AT ALL! In fact, he's earning nothing right now, as he is full-time carer for his parents. It's not the 1950s anymore!"
3. "I work in management in an overwhelmingly male-dominated industry, and also happen to make more money than my husband."
4. "My mom has always made more than my dad. She’s also much more intelligent and tech savvy. My dad couldn’t give a flying fuck; he’s thrilled he’s got such a smart woman he can always call on. And he comes from the boomer era when women stayed home and men went to work."
5. "For years my husband and I worked for the same company, doing the same position, on the same team (how we met)."
6. "When my boyfriend and I graduated college, my internship turned into a full-time, salaried job that then turned into another, better-paying job."
"He really struggled to find something more than retail work because of the pandemic, so I’ve been taking care of most of our financial needs for the last year or so. He doesn’t have a toxic or machismo bone in his body; his only issue is the pressure that I’m currently under to pay rent and take care of groceries for both of us. He’s starting law school in the fall and wants to 'tag in' once he graduates and gets a job that can support us both, because I’m getting a little burned out."
7. "My husband and I are on opposite ends of the salary scale. He’s on minimum wage, works incredibly hard, and works longer hours than me, and I’m on a six-figure salary."
8. "Not a big deal for us as a couple, but really difficult when we get to the maternity-leave stage. I can take up to a year off, but only three months are paid. He can only take two weeks off. This doesn’t really work with me earning more money."
9. "My partner has been with me since I was in an entry-level role and has been 200% supportive as I’ve worked hard over the years to grow into a leadership position."
10. "My fiancé and I work the same job, but he has more experience. Because I have my bachelor's though, I get paid more than he does."
"When it comes time to get our raises, he gets upset about it but never at me, just about how management views it. But we’ve always planned to have our lives with, if we can manage it, me working full-time and him being stay-at-home. Honestly, he’s excited by the idea of spending time with the kids growing up, and I can’t imagine staying home. So if it works, I don’t see why anyone would be upset by it; it’s more money for you guys to spend on each other. If they hate it, they’re obviously insecure!"
11. "My husband has always been my biggest supporter and has helped push me into roles that have gotten me in a very successful spot in life at my age."
12. "My husband worked three jobs (teacher plus side jobs) while I was in pharmacy school so that I could focus on my grades."
"Without him I would have had a much harder time in school! He has never had an issue with me making about 3x what he makes. He’s proud of the hard work I put in! And I’m thankful he sacrificed so that I could make it happen."
13. "When I started dating my now-husband, he was making $10/hr to my $50."
14. "My boyfriend and I have been together for close to five years, and we work for the same law enforcement agency."
"Although we both started as officers, I’ve had a few promotions in the past years, and not only do I make more money, but I also outrank him. He’s been nothing but supportive. His colleagues told me he frequently talks about my accomplishments and how proud he is of me. When people ask him what it’s like for him to go out with an older woman — he’s ten years younger than I am — who makes more money, he just shrugs and says he feels lucky. I feel like I won the lottery with this one!"
15. "Unfortunately even where men are OK with it, sometimes stressors come in the form of others voicing their unsolicited opinions and making comments."
16. "I've made more than my partner since we got together because I work a corporate office job and he works in receiving at a grocery store."
"The most interesting thing has been that my work has been volatile (I was laid off last year and spent almost a whole year unemployed), but his work has been extremely consistent. As far as the whole gender thing, I think he likes being the one under less pressure to earn and get promoted and all that. He likes his job and doesn't feel any need to get a 'real job.' Over the pandemic, it became more and more clear that he as an essential worker should be making what I make and vice versa, which has nothing to do with our genders and everything to do with the wildly unfair balance of what is considered 'real work' and where we assign value to a job. It's not bullshit that I make more because I am a woman; it's bullshit that I make more and he's literally essential."
17. "I earn double what my bloke does. He cares not one bit."
18. "My husband and half of his male friends earn less than their female S.O.s. When the guys talk about this, they sound very proud of their partners and consider themselves lucky."
"However, I have worked in an environment where I was paid less than my male colleague with the same job title, even when I had more responsibilities. Neither of us were happy with this situation, but it was never corrected."
19. And finally, "GIRL. I was with a guy for five years. I started progressing in my career (we worked at the same company) and eventually started making more than him."
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and clarity.
Now it's your turn! If your income has ever been an issue in a relationship (regardless of your gender), share your story in the comments below.
And for more on all things money, check out the rest of our personal finance posts.