On Women’s Liberation, Manhood and My Wife

Beaker talks about Women’s Liberation movement, what manhood means, and explains why he is okay with me making more money than he does. My story “Why I Lied About Money” made him want to write this post. This is his point of view…

I truly believe that we are a product of our environment.

I grew up in a generation that was labeled as the generation that didn’t care about anything, that didn’t have a work ethic. We expected everything that we wanted to be given to us. Our generation was lovingly called Generation X.

I grew up learning about Civil Rights, Women’s Liberation, and that there is no longer “free love” for everyone without a consequence. Thus, I learned to respect my fellow man no matter what color of their skin. I learned that women deserve to be treated as equals. And I learned to always use a condom.

Our Generation X was expected to respect a woman’s choice to start a family, have a career, or both. The Women’s Liberation was about women breaking old stereotypes and trying to live their lives free and equal. Now women are in more control of their lives than ever, and I say, “Good for you”. I am not being sarcastic.

Being a man for me is not necessarily being the bread winner and making all the financial decisions in our family.

I believe that being a man means loving and supporting your spouse, and helping make tough decisions. Sometimes I have to play the role of the “mean” man who says, “Hey, do you really need another hat you are not going to wear?” That one is tough, and usually gets me into trouble.

Men were also liberated from the stereotypical roles of the past. But these new roles are meeting the same resistance that women meet in the work place. Women have to deal with making less money than men do performing the same job. In comparison, men get asked questions about their “manhood” if their wives make more then them. Haven’t we progressed as a society to get beyond these stereotypes? It seems silly to me that more people don’t try and think outside the box to broaden their horizons to new ideas, and new ways of living their lives.

I like to think that my generation has had to implement the ideas from the generation before ours.

We have had to live outside their norms and make new roles for men and women in society. We had to, or we would be left behind clinging to old ways of thinking and outdated stereotypes that needed to be changed for the betterment of all of us.

I was asked recently how I feel about my wife making more money then I do. First and foremost, I am proud of her because she has worked damn hard to get to where she is. I also know that I had something to do with her getting to where she is now. So, in truth, I am proud of both of us because we have worked very hard to get to where we are.

For me, there is no “her money“ or “my money“, there is only our money. I know that together we are going to achieve any goal we have set for ourselves. Together we are going to succeed. I believe this because of the way my generation was taught to respect and treat women, as equals.

When someone asks me if I feel like less of a man because my wife makes more then I do, I tell them “no”, and that they need to look up this thing called Women’s Liberation.

26 thoughts on “On Women’s Liberation, Manhood and My Wife”

  1. Reading your perspective, I could actually hear my husband’s voice. He feels the same way you do. Actually, I think a lot of men feel the same way you do; I just don’t think they want to admit.

    Thank you for speaking up!

    1. Beaker says: That’s probably true. A lot of men probably would not admit it because of the way they were brought and their traditional roles. They think that it makes them weak or lazy, and I think that’s wrong.

  2. I love this post! You sound exactly like my BF. I make more than him, and pretty much always will. He has no problem with me making more, he calls me his “suga mama”

  3. Q: “Do you feel like less of a man because your wife earns more money?”

    A: “Nope, do you feel like a dumb-ass for not being able to marry a smarter woman?

  4. Haha, I love bax’s response above.
    I would love it if Mrs. RB40 makes more money than I do. She deserves it because she works a lot harder than I do. It’s too bad that pay inequity still exist.

    1. Beaker says: It amazes me that women still make less than men do. It is atrocious. I am really surprised that more people don’t talk about it.

  5. It seems like this theme has been popping up quite a bit over the past week or so. I am just like you Beaker. If my wife is making more money than me it’s because she worked hard to get there and I am damn proud of her. Like you, all the money is “our” money and I’ve never heard our bank account complain about where the money comes from.

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  7. As a Gen Xer (barely, maybe a Millenial), I’m in no hurry to implement the ideas of our previous generation. Baby boomers have done a fine job screwing up this country and I think we need a new path.

    I have no problem if my wife made more money, in fact, I’d be fine being a stayathomedad. It’s all about whether you are able to reject the tired rules of previous generations.

  8. Beaker, are you getting your own blog soon? You already have some loyal readers, me included. We are very much affected by the culture and values of our generation, and Gen X and Gen Y have done a much better job of understanding what respect for others is all about. And I agree that you are 100% a part of your wife’s success. Having someone who supports you no matter what is what I love about being in a relationship.

    1. Beaker says: No, I am not starting my own blog.:) I agree with the newer generations are a little bit more open-minded but I think we, as a society, have a long way to go.

  9. Thank you for posting this. As someone who divorced a man (in part) because of problems stemming from his jealousy re: my income, it’s nice to have a reminder that not everyone thinks that way.

    I second the idea that you should start a blog! You have great ideas and express them well. I would definitely read. 🙂

    1. Beaker says: money issues are huge in the relationships. It is too bad that it is that way. Sorry, I am going to keep my monthly feature on my wife’s blog but please keep reading. 🙂

  10. Dannielle @ Odd Cents

    I absolutely love this: “I believe that being a man means loving and supporting your spouse, and helping make tough decisions.” I agree with Jana too – lots of men are afraid to admit how they really feel.

  11. First, thanks for publishing Beaker’s “rebuttal” of sorts to your post last week – I read that, and found it fascinating.

    Now, on to today’s post – my husband makes more than I do, but I make more “per hour” worked. He often brags that once our kids are in school (as in, elementary school – they’re 3 and 10 months right now) and I can expand my hours that I’ll make more than he does by quite a bit – and he’s thrilled with the concept. I think he envisions me as his “sugar mama” – and doesn’t have a problem with it!

  12. Nobody ever asked Mr. BFS how he felt about me making more before he started working from home with me, but he proudly told all of our friends and family about how well we were doing because of my online business. He never brought up Women’s Liberation…it was just him being happy that we as a couple were making more. I think he would dance a jig if he could just retire completely and I do all of the work, lol. 🙂

  13. That’s great to be open minded to that. There are plenty of men, and plenty of women, that aren’t able to get past the hurdle of a husband making less than his wife. With more than 50% of undergraduate degrees now being conferred to women, people need to get used to adjusting expectations.

    1. Beaker says: You are right, half of the population is women and they have been working as hard as men for a long time. It is only inevitable that women will make more than men. People need to get used to it.

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