US mothers increasingly main family breadwinner - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 24 Old 05-29-2013, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
mamazee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: US midwest
Posts: 7,500
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
There is a new study out showing that 40% of US homes have a woman as the breadwinner, either because it is a single-mother home or because the mother makes more money than the father.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22707433
Quote:
Mothers are increasingly the primary breadwinners in their families, a new report has found, marking a dramatic shift in US household finances.

A record 40% of US homes with children relied on mothers as their main or only source of income, a Pew survey found.



What do you think of this? Is it a good trend? I'm trying to think of what all might be involved in this shift: child care, families delaying having children, more options being available for our daughters as they grow up. I am wondering what this shift will mean for society. Once upon a time, it was a big deal for men to be breadwinners, and I remember being taught by my mother growing up (I'm in my mid-40s now so a while ago) that it was important to make sure my future husband was the breadwinner because it would make him feel needed and make it less likely we'd get divorced. I've never believed that, but I think it was a common belief back then and shows how much of a shift there's been within just my lifetime. Will this shift continue?

I've heard that women have a much higher rate of university attendance then men. I have to think that the shift will continue due to that. If women are as a group better educated than men, then as a group they will end up with higher paying jobs in the long run, right? Or am I making assumptions?

Anyway, I thought there was some good potential for discussion here.
mamazee is offline  
#2 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 10:12 AM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 841
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)

This is in surprisingly stark contrast to the highly documented fact that women only make about 70 cents for every dollar a man makes.  I suspect there has been some gerrymandering with the data for this new study.  Probably more reflects the rise in single-mother homes. 
 


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is online now  
#3 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 10:41 AM
 
rachelsmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Posts: 1,575
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)

I think one factor is the economy: when jobs are scarce people get less fussy about gender roles, and focus more on basic necessities. 

rachelsmama is offline  
#4 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 10:48 AM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

If it is true, I believe it is a good thing. It changes the balance of power in a lot of relationships. A woman who is financially independent is a lot less likely to put up with emotional, financial or physical abuse from her partner. A partner who knows that his wife does not have to take his abuse is far less likely to abuse.

choli is online now  
#5 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 11:10 AM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think it probably is mostly due to single mothers. Or if the husband has an occupation that does not require a college education, while the wife has one that does. Because if they both have the same education level, and similar occupations, the man still makes more.
pek64 is offline  
#6 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 11:18 AM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by pek64 View Post

I think it probably is mostly due to single mothers. Or if the husband has an occupation that does not require a college education, while the wife has one that does. Because if they both have the same education level, and similar occupations, the man still makes more.

Not in my experience. I make the same as my male co-workers for the same occupation. Our pay is determined by skill set, not by gender.

choli is online now  
#7 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 12:05 PM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post

Not in my experience. I make the same as my male co-workers for the same occupation. Our pay is determined by skill set, not by gender.

I'm glad that's true for you. My experience, and others I know, has been different.
pek64 is offline  
#8 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 12:14 PM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by pek64 View Post


I'm glad that's true for you. My experience, and others I know, has been different.

Really? In what field are you working? You have found that peers with the same skillset and years of experience (remember to deduct time spent on maternity leave or mommy track from experience), working the same hours, doing the same job, are getting paid more if they are male?

 

The only time I've seen a difference in pay between peers (whether male or female) is in the starting salary. In boomier times, entrants start from a higher salary than in more recessionary times, therefore their pay and bonus is coming from a lower base line, leading to lower pay over the years.

choli is online now  
#9 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 12:21 PM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post

Really? In what field are you working? You have found that peers with the same skillset and years of experience (remember to deduct time spent on maternity leave or mommy track from experience), working the same hours, doing the same job, are getting paid more if they are male?

The only time I've seen a difference in pay between peers (whether male or female) is in the starting salary. In boomier times, entrants start from a higher salary than in more recessionary times, therefore their pay and bonus is coming from a lower base line, leading to lower pay over the years.


Maybe that's the problem, the lower baseline pay.


Edited to add -- I don't think I was hired during a recession, so that takes me back to 'women don't get paid as much as men'.
pek64 is offline  
#10 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 12:56 PM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by pek64 View Post


Maybe that's the problem, the lower baseline pay.


Edited to add -- I don't think I was hired during a recession, so that takes me back to 'women don't get paid as much as men'.

In my experience, baseline pay depends on the when, not the gender.

choli is online now  
#11 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 01:01 PM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post

In my experience, baseline pay depends on the when, not the gender.



Then it would seem that you and I have had different experiences.
pek64 is offline  
#12 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 01:16 PM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by pek64 View Post


Then it would seem that you and I have had different experiences.

Maybe the field is relevant.

choli is online now  
#13 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 02:49 PM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post

Maybe the field is relevant.

Maybe. And that would *still* mean our experiences are different.
pek64 is offline  
#14 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 03:50 PM
 
Ragana's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Chicago area
Posts: 1,871
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)

I was interested to hear about this today. This trend will definitely require a cultural shift. I was the main breadwinner for 8 years while my DH was a SAHD/student. People in a lot of social situations really didn't know what to do with us. I'm guessing our category is the vast minority of this statistic. The article says 63% are single moms.
 


Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

Ragana is online now  
#15 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 04:02 PM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
In the case of single Moms, I wonder if child support is taken into account, and if so, how exactly?
choli is online now  
#16 of 24 Old 05-30-2013, 04:44 PM
 
Alenushka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: CA
Posts: 1,893
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

Money is power, so awesome news. I am tired that minority which is SAHMS is constantly covered in the media in positive way  "sacrifice ", "better path" etc, while is reality, 75% of moms work outside home and long term studies showed that there is no long term difference in outcomes and for certain sub populations having a mom who works outside home  provides a child with more benefits.

choli likes this.
Alenushka is offline  
#17 of 24 Old 05-31-2013, 07:10 PM
 
seawind's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 254
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alenushka View Post

Money is power, so awesome news. I am tired that minority which is SAHMS is constantly covered in the media in positive way  "sacrifice ", "better path" etc, while is reality, 75% of moms work outside home and long term studies showed that there is no long term difference in outcomes and for certain sub populations having a mom who works outside home  provides a child with more benefits.


You may be "tired" of hearing it, but you also reinforced the sacrifice and better path reality when you acknowledged that "Money is power" and that "power" is something that SAHM'S forego.

 

And let's not turn this into a debate about who provides better benefits and accept that circumstances are different for everyone and people make their choices accordingly.

seawind is offline  
#18 of 24 Old 06-01-2013, 06:13 AM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I worked for years (underpaid) before having my son, and switching to being a stay-at-home-mom. There are benefits to working, and benefits to being home. In an ideal world, we would not have to choose. Unfortunately, we do have to choose. But we should respect each other's choices. There's enough judgment outside of the mothering world, I hope here we can have less.
pek64 is offline  
#20 of 24 Old 06-01-2013, 09:51 AM
 
choli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Interesting - per the third article linked I work in one of the seven professions with the smallest gender pay gaps.
choli is online now  
#21 of 24 Old 06-01-2013, 11:06 AM
 
Alenushka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: CA
Posts: 1,893
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

 Love is great but love does not pay the rent.

 

This is just a reality of it.

 

I do not want to depend on any man ever for money because what what I see on the forums and real life it lead to unhealthy balance. I am sure some people have awesome families where mom stays home and man does not feel like he deserve a free pass on housework but I am yet to see it.

 

And what about divorce? death? disability?

 

Things happen and more often than people think.

Alenushka is offline  
#22 of 24 Old 06-01-2013, 01:03 PM
 
pek64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,502
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post

Interesting - per the third article linked I work in one of the seven professions with the smallest gender pay gaps.

In one of the seven where women tend to get paid slightly more than men, or one of the ten with the smallest gap?

Sorry. Possibly not important, just like to get my details straight. If you prefer not to answer, I understand.
pek64 is offline  
#23 of 24 Old 06-01-2013, 01:14 PM
 
delightedbutterfly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,630
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)

I currently SAH full time (besides the one after school kid I look after for another month) and my husband willingly participates in the household chores and child rearing. Sometimes he does even more than I do (believe it or not) and sometimes he does next to nothing (<---- but these times are not based on not wanting to, it's based on his job and what hours he's working or if he's even at home during this time).

 

In previous years together he's been gone away for work for 8 months while I've done all the work of 2 parents and then some extra work at the same time and there's been years where I have been too sick to do any more than look after my children's needs during the day, and he's picked up all of the slack and looked after the entire household after work. There's also been times where I have brought in an income higher than my Dh's and times when I've brought in much smaller incomes but still a big contribution to the family. 

And through everything and every variation he's always treated me like a queen :) And he's my king... neither of us has more power in the relationship.

 

I feel completely comfortable at this time being 100% dependent on my husband at the moment. However I know if something were to change drastically tomorrow and we divorced that I could with a two week course have a job that pays as well if not more than my husband. And without the course I have lots of past training that is still relevant that would provide us with a decent living pay, even if it was less than he's currently making. For us choosing to have a parent home with the children as much as possible while still allowing one us to further our education was important. It just happened that the opportunity for him to be the breadwinner and me to be the SAHP was the better option at the time. We're also completely covered in case of death and disability. In fact, my husband is pretty sure I'd fare better than he would if the other one were to pass away. 

 

So it can happen :)


Mom to two beautiful girls and  ****5****10****15****20****25****30****35***40**

Come check out MDC's Updated User Agreement  
delightedbutterfly is online now  
#24 of 24 Old 06-02-2013, 07:27 AM
 
onematchfire's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Kent, OH, USA
Posts: 40
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'll be one of the female breadwinners with a stay at home spouse after I deliver and my maternity leave is over. I make more than double what my spouse does (he's college-educated, and though I have a graduate degree and am technically more educated, I'm not using it, so the difference is in the field of work). We did the math on child care and work-related expenses, and it just didn't make sense for him to continue working full time. I wish I had the option of staying home instead, but with my enormous student loans (on the degree I'm not using), it would be way too tight for us on just his salary, so there wasn't much decision to make.
onematchfire is offline  
Reply

Tags
News , Work And Family

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off