A Successful Woman’s Career Jeopardizes Marriage

Dr. Michael LaitmanIn the News (from ChicagoBooth): “For all the progress women have made in the past few decades—in education, work force participation, and earnings—a gender gap remains. Research by Marianne Bertrand, Chris P. Dialynas Distinguished Service Professor of Economics, suggests that this may be due to the societal expectation that a woman make less money than her husband. …

“The notion that a man should earn more than his wife not only impacts marriage rates, the researchers show, but also influences how much a married woman works outside the home and how household chores are divided. Moreover, women who deviate from that norm pay a social price. …

“A woman outearning her husband could even doom the marriage, as the researchers report this ‘increases the likelihood of divorce by 50 percent.’

“When a married woman has a career outside of the home, she may opt for less demanding and lower paying jobs in order to appear less ‘threatening’ to her husband. Or, she may choose to focus entirely on child rearing, and work part-time outside the home or not at all. Such women ‘distort labor market outcomes,’ the economists conclude. …

“Moreover, wives who earn more often end up doing more of the household chores, not less. … “One explanation for this, the researchers suggest, is that a wife making more money is doing more chores to assuage her husband’s unease. But serving as both the primary breadwinner and the primary homemaker may be draining. That, the researchers point out, ‘may be one of the mechanisms behind our results on divorce.’—Emily Lambert.”

My Comment: Once we establish balance with nature, meaning that we will work only to the extent of maintaining a rational lifestyle, the concept of earning will disappear; a career will be the notion that brings benefit to society; everyone will be able to give and receive without causing jealousy; the basis of inequality will disappear.

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