She Makes Way More Than Me! Problem?


So this has been a subject of discussion many a times when the matter of dating and marriage comes up with our dear Nigerian social group; She makes way more money than her boyfriend or husband.

Now when I’m saying she makes more money, I’m talking significantly more. Like $150k over $50k. A significant gap in financial power.

In many discussion one of the major issues that come up for both men & women is the issue of respect. A sizable number of men, more especially Nigerian men expressed concern that if their wife made more money than them, she will not respect him, and will not “do wifey duties”, and on the flipside some women have also said they might not respect a man who makes significantly less than them for whatever reason (unless he was in school). I guess for most of us, traditional things are still in the back of our minds that even with more modern views it’s a bit hard to shake off those traditional roles. It’s very interesting measuring up the “respect” factor with insecurities that might exist in that type of scenario.

Another issue that comes up is lifestyle and ambition. Is he making less money simply because of his career average pay or is he just not putting in the effort. Is the man just chilling with an easy life job making the little he can while the woman puts in 70 hrs in at the hospital? Is he doing domestic work to compensate? In a scenario like that, it’s likely that after a while, one party will begin to feel like they’re carrying the financial weight while the other is just chilling and “chopping the money”. But then again what if the situation is reversed? Is it as bad for a man to slave while the woman chills with a easy lifestyle job that pays little while she does domestic work? A more traditional role if you will.

Probably the biggest issue when this topic came up is future goals, and how the money is handled. As a woman being the breadwinner of family setting future financial goals for herself and the family fall primarily on her shoulders. This is a position where a lot of men as “head” of households find very difficult to handle. In many marriages, both Nigerian & non-Nigerian, where the woman is the breadwinner, the issue of how the money is allocated and future plans becomes an issue of a huge conflict as egos, and rights jam heads constantly. One person is the “head” of the household, but another brings in most of the money, so naturally wahala go dey. You don’t need to look too far to see these issues pop up in Nigerian households in the US.

All in all it almost seemed from conversations that most women, and more especially men will not have this as an ideal scenario and in some cases it’s almost a deal breaker.

But it’s 2012, and the likelihood of this happening is pretty high as we have more and more ambitious women. More than a generation ago. So now I ask: Men, would you have a problem with your wife making significantly more money than you? Women, would you care if he makes less?

Let’s hear it.


  1. Oh plss, lyk itz a big deal, Michelle made far more dan Barack nd dey r stl kickin, Michelle wz evn Barack’s boss wen dey met stl she’s stl in ha stand by ur man role. And d@z d world’s 1st couple.Nigerian men jst av 2 swallow deir ego nd let deir wives b nd it’l pay evry1 in d longrun

    • See you. It’s that kind of mentality that makes men that earn more that women treat them like property. You disrespect him while he’s on the come up and then tides turn and the bobo begin de give you suplex when you make eye contact with him.

  2. Let me put this way; the earlier couples realize that its a team work and stop this unnecessary marginalization, the happier and better most marriages will be. I have been making about (50% more) than my husband in our 5yrs of marriage. We share most of the household chores. most days, I am gone to work around 6am and those days, he gets the kids ready and drops them off at daycare before heading out to start his day since his work starts later than mine and I get off earlier and pick up the kids. He doesnt come home, sit down infront of the kids and watch tv while waiting for dinner to be ready. I cook about 80% of our meals and while he makes some excellent scrambled eggs and few other things, he delightly makes them when we gotta eat that. I try to always have food in the fridge and when there is for example, no soup there for swallow, he will eat what else is there. Do I respect him even though I make more than him? … ABSOLUTELY. That man is my crown and the king of our home.

    • Eyaa. That’s nice.
      Well, the truth is as long as the dude is not a bum, doesn’t think he’s God’s gift to the family, pulls his own weight around the house with the chores, regardless of how much he makes, the family will be alright. Gone are the days when the man brings all the bread and sits down to be fed. Now that man and woman are both bringing bread, the other duties should be shared. Otherwise, the woman can stay at home and get it done, while everyone subsists on a single income. Men need to stop tying their value to how much money they make, learn how to tie it to more reasonable things, what kind of human being are you, are you a good father, good husband, do you support a good football team, are you a hard worker, things like that. Then, it wouldn’t matter if you make half the amount your wife makes, that wouldn’t be what keeps you up at night.

  3. Ideally it shouldnt, but I have witnessed it ruin a friend’s parents’ marriage. The truth is, we are all humans and men are traditionally wired to be the head/breadwinner of the family. It takes a God-fearing woman to put up with a shift in financial prowess, and even though all may be fine, I’m pretty sure if you ask them they would rather have the man earn more and maintain status quo.