If a woman sets her mind to it, there is pretty much nothing that she can't do. We have excelled in nearly every discipline and vocation we have attempted. But there seems to be a prevailing notion these days that since women have come such a long way, they should contribute financially to relationships. For some men, it's a prerequisite. Smh...
I'm teaching my daughter not to accept this new relationship dynamic. As much as things have changed, gender roles are still very much the same. Once she gets married and has children, her responsibilities to the family increase exponentially.
Now I've seen some 20-something-year-old couples move-in together and immediately start splitting the bills. If you ask me, that sounds like a roommate-kind-of-situation with benefits. Sounds real cute as long as no one is expected to do anything more. You see, playing house and making a home are two very different things.
Notice that I didn't say they were married. Even if they were married, I would have the same concerns about this semi-committed relationship because women still don't have the same earning power and opportunities in the workplace.
Women are lucky if they make 83 cents for every dollar a man earns. For Black women, that statistic is dismally lower. Women are largely unrepresented in positions of power. Some industries are also still heavily male-dominated. Therefore, the glass ceiling on upward mobility is a huge obstacle that women have yet to overcome.
And besides, I don't want my daughter to be in a relationship with a man who can't figure out how to take care of the family if she is laid off or on maternity leave. I am a traditionalist when it comes to down to which gender should do the heavy lifting in a marriage.
Sorry. Ok, not sorry. Men are built to be providers. Although women have fared much better in recent years career-wise, the playing field is still far from level. And guess what? Even if the salaries that men and women earn were equal, gender roles still are not.
If a baby enters the equation, guess who's going to be the primary caregiver for most of its life? Guess who has to take off from work to give birth? Who is usually the first parent called when children are sick?
And don't forget who is cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, helping with homework, going to doctor's appointments, and driving to practices and recitals.
I could go on, but the point is that it's categorically unfair to require women to help support the family financially. With all of the unpaid work that women already do, what they earn should be completely under their control.
The man my daughter ends up with doesn't have to be a billionaire, but he does have to embrace the role of being the protector of, provider for, and maintainer of women.
If he is looking at what she has earned on her own as a criteria for dating/courting/marriage, then I have advised her to wait for a real man to come along. How you start is how you finish and this current trend is a recipe for disaster.