Women As Breadwinners: An Issue?


I remember getting to work extremely early a couple of months ago and reading an article from a very infuriated wife that her husband wasn’t allowing her to take care of responsibilities in their home. Now, I am sure many of you are wondering what I am on about now. Let me start first by telling her story. Ms A grew up in a home, in which her mother took care of all responsibilities. She was the bread winner while her husband basically depended on her to bring home the cheddar. Ms A grew up thinking that this is the norm, that when she started dating, she always dated a particular type – in between jobs, unemployed, no future plans kind of men, until she fell in love with wonderful guy who grew up in a more traditional family setting in which Father took care of most of the financial responsibilities and that is where wahala (trouble) started. Ms. A’s husband thought it was very weird that his wife acted the way she did and he felt very disrespected because Ms. A will perform family financial responsibilities without discussing it with him.
Now, many will think this is an anomaly while many men will probably be wishing that this could be their story but upon reading this story – I wondered is this story a common one particularly in this present period of recession. As usual it got me thinking and searching. It is no secret that we are currently going through a recession but it seems that the industries that seem to be the most highly hit seem to be industries that are very male dominated, now with more men loosing their jobs as opposed to women – the question becomes what is the impact of this change in the family? It is a given that more women will be the bread winners and then what next? For some liberal men they do not see the big deal in such a switch but for many women even though they do not articulate their frustration, they detest being the bread winners. Some silently fume or find some ways of showing their frustrations. So men, if you find yourself in such a situation, quickly come up with ways to change the tides.
Personally, I know many women who are currently in this situation and none is happy. I will leave you with a story I heard a couple of years ago – a woman found herself the breadwinner in her house hold, her husband was unable to accept the fact that he now has a new role, now that his wife was the only one working. So basically the woman will leave early for work, get home late at night to see dirty dishes in the sink, the house extremely dirty, the toilet a mess and no food cooked. Each time, she will curse under her breathe and get to working.
So I leave you with these questions: A)is it okay for women to be bread winners? B)For men: if the tides turned and you found yourself in a similar situation will you be comfortable allowing your woman to be the breadwinner and women how will you feel about this switch? C) What is the impact of this switch in a relationship/marriage? Many men feel that when this occurs women stop respecting them – is that true? So you tell me what you think?


  1. Well as a guy that grew up in a household where my Dad was the primary breadwinner of the house, I can understand how a guy can feel a lil emasculated by the woman being the primary breadwinner. Now it's 2009 and things have changed, so I personally I'm more open minded to the idea… Not because I want to be a bum seating at home doing nothin, but because I know sometimes things go flip-flop in terms of the primary income provider. I could lose a job, she might be pregnant, etc. It all depends on the situation.

    Now I have seen cases where men get very defensive, and weird about their wives making more money or being the primary breadwinner, and I've seen women throw it in their husband's faces that they are the primary breadwinner by calling him all kinds of useless man names, and that is def very disrespectful.

    As for me… i don't send as long as u don't disrespect because of the situation. I should know my wife well enough to know if she can do that before i even marry so i hope it wont be a problem on my part. Marriage is partnership so it's expected that one person balances the other and not out-do the other

  2. It's 2009 …almost 2010…when will cavemen evolve and realise that marriage is a partnership. Sometimes one will have to pull the slack while the other gets back on their feet.

  3. This article is not well written at all. This person writes as if she were in middle school. Sorry.

  4. it depends on the situation, if a woman is the bread winner and shes calm and not cocky about it then yea that shouldnt be a problem but when a woman is and shes cocky and bossy, thats where the problem comes. everywoman must submit to their husband no matter what the situation is.

    • i agree to some degree. being the stubborn "independent bitches" kinda chick that i am (lol), i hate the word "submissive" but i gotta face reality and realize that at times i will need to give into my man, but it does depend on the situation.

  5. Don' t you think that it is quite silly to expect the woman to behave in a particular way when men aren't told how they should behave when they are the breadwinners.

    Editor General: Your comment makes it seem as though you are in primary school.

    I have seen many homes broken over finances and it is quite sad that it seems to be occurring a lot particularly during this period of recession. The article could have gone on further to come up with ways to deal with the situation but I guess, she decided to stop at laying out the issue.

    I will not be in home where I am the breadwinner. Guys you can take this how you like.

    • wow, that's quite sad. shit happens, and when it does you gotta be prepared to deal with it. if ur man loses his job and u find yourself in the position of the breadwinner, deal with it. take it in stride. but it would be ur best bet to have a one on one chat with ur hubby and discuss the changes that WILL occur, not that the roles have been switched. This means that he will have to take responsibility of the home and the kids, while ur out there working ur butt off. he should think of it as a new job position and, like i said earlier, take it in stride. once this has been discussed and understood, their should be no worries about one disrespecting the other for whatever reason cuz each has his or her own new responsibilities and as long as they own up to them, everything should be okay. No man can complain if he can't provide like he used to, he just has to learn to do his part in another way.

  6. I dont think any man should be uncomfortable with a women being able to carry the weight of the family if any situation were to occur like a job loss or whatever. It should instead be seen as a good thing to have a woman that is capable of carrying the family for a while. As long as noone is being disrespectd in the process it should not be a problem..#IMO

    • I agree. People are so backward with the way they think sometimes. Better to starve that to have the woman bring in money abi?

      If it is a loving and respectful relationship then it will not be an issue either way.

  7. I have to agree with all who said it depends on the situation. Of course if your man is in between jobs or things arent working out business wise and you as the woman can pick up the slack then why on earth not? After all your vows were 'for better or worse' so why smile only at the better and grumble/frown at the worse part. I

    That being said I dont think being the primary breadwinner should be a permanent thing and it CERTAINLY shouldnt come as a result of the man being lazy or negligent! If he cant 'earn the bread', so to speak, then maybe he could find other ways to help the wife out (house and kid responsiilites). He can be the one to drop and pick kids (school), if not clean the house totally then at least not dirty it up and leave dirty dishes for his wife to come home and meet and…yes even cook when need be. A woman who feels loved, appreciated and valued will show her hubby respect.

    It can work out that way and it has. Its a matter of both partners being willing to swallow their pride and do what they can for the sake of their home and marriage. If the man or woman want to play ego games or try to prove a point it will only serve to damage their marriage.