Does your spouse/significant other make more than you do?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by orangetea, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. orangetea

    orangetea Connoisseur

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    I'll be getting married in 2 years hopefully, when my boyfriend settles down. He's finishing med school, and I know that he'll be making a lot more than me when he's done with his residency.
    I don't know, I just don't like the idea of him making 150K more than me. I sort of feel like I won't be putting in my equal share. My mom was a computer programmer and she made a very good living, but my dad made double what she made. I sort of felt like my mom felt like she needed to do more to make up for that.
    Of course, this really isn't an issue at all. I just feel bad sharing money when most of it actually isn't mine.
     
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  3. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    If my wife made 150k a year, I'd retire.
     
  4. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    Yes, and it has it's ups and downs. He makes almost twice what I make, but when we met, he made less than me, and when we moved in together we made the same. Then it was really easy to figure out how to divide our money - we each put half our paycheck into a joint account and kept half for ourselves. Now we still have the joint account but I stopped putting money into it so I could pay off my credit cards and he is paying all the bills since he makes so much more. It's nice, and I just got everything paid off last week so we are going to re-configure the budget, but I also hate that we have this "joint" account that now is really just his money and I feel guilty when I use it. We will make a big purchase, and he says, should I put this on the joint? It doesn't make any difference - it is all coming out of his stuff. I am glad I have my stuff paid down so I can start contributing again.
     
  5. orangetea

    orangetea Connoisseur

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    I don't think we want separate accounts; we want everything to be joint.
    But I would feel somewhat guilty. I guess it will take time to go from saying "your money, my money" to "our money."
     
  6. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Sort of, technically we are close to even, but he works over time and special projects and I am on salary. We both contribute equally to our home and life.
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    My mom never worked after I was born, so I don't see anything wrong with a one-income or "unequal income" family. Now, I know that some families could turn it into an issue, but you can really do that with anything. Plenty of families argue over money even with both have the same job and almost identical incomes.

    My dad worked. My mom stayed home. Yes, it was all "his" money, but she enjoyed keeping house, and they were not out money on daycare, babysitters, or other expenses of two-career families. Even though he made the money, Dad did not manage the money . . . at all.

    My DH and I are the opposite. I have the main income. His work has never been more than 8 hours a week. He gives me his money, and I put it with mine and take care of all the finances. I'll admit that I kind of like having a "house husband". :lol:

    Plus, a relationship should be based on a lot more than how much money one brings to the relationship.
     
  8. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    My husband is...wonderful. I was not in good place when we became a couple. I was eighteen and living on my own (because according to my parents, eighteen was too old to be home) and didn't have a bed, couch, dresser, stove...I did, though, have a hot plate! :p Point is, he helped me greatly and we adopted a "WE" mentality early on. Now, while he earns more than I do, it just doesn't matter. I would never feel like I wasn't pulling my weight, nor would that ever be implied. Heck, I wouldn't feel like a bum even as a housewife because I would accomplish so much for the home and family.
     
  9. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    My husband makes almost 4x what I make--he is a computer engineer. I have no problem with it because all our money is pooled together.
     
  10. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    This is how it was for the first 5 years hubs and I were married and it didn't bother me one bit. We both enjoyed his high salary. He changed careers to become a teacher and still makes more than me but not to that extreme.
     
  11. AZMrs.S

    AZMrs.S Cohort

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    :yeahthat: I totally agree! My husband makes more than I do, but it isn't that big of a deal because we share everything. Everything goes into one account and I manage our finances because that works better for our family.
     
  12. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Exactly!

    My hubs and I bring in about the same, though with his per diem he brings in more than I do. In our 12 years together, we have both been the breadwinner at different times. We have a joint account, no separate accounts. If I could, I'd be a stay at home mom so I wouldn't have any qualms about my hubs making 150K more than I do. My thought is as long as the bills are paid and we aren't struggling, I don't care who makes more.
     
  13. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    For much of the time we have made about the same. There have been times when I have made more. Regardless it has always gone into one pot and everything for the both of us was paid out of it. When we got married; my debt became our debt and her debt became our debt. She will soon be making more money than me and I have no problem with that. Just more money to pay for everything with. Eventually it will even out again.
     
  14. yearroundteach

    yearroundteach Companion

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    My husband makes almost 3 times what I do. I can't say that I love it. I wish it wasn't so uneven because there are times when I know he would love to have something but he has to put off buying it because the bills weigh more heavily on him because of his higher salary. (We have joint, his, and hers accounts). However it isn't something that comes up in our day to day relationship and he would never dream of ever mentioning it.

    It is something I've had to learn to live with because I will never make anywhere close to what he does. Even if I got another degree and picked up several tutoring jobs his salary would still double mine. So I've made peace with it I suppose :thumb: The only area it affects me in is at times I sometimes feel I should be doing more around the house. Then I realize that I work more hours than he does so I get angry that I have to do more. Then I have to catch myself and remember that is a self imposed expectations; not anything that he thinks or says. :whistle:
     
  15. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    I make more than my husband does. It has always been OUR money. We have never had separate accounts, and every thing is joint ownership.
    And all that started 25 years ago TODAY!!!!! :wub:
     
  16. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Happy anniversary, knitter!!!!
     
  17. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Thanks!
     
  18. Catcherman22

    Catcherman22 Companion

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    My wife makes about 20k more than I do.. she makes more than I do, but she totally acknowledges that I work way harder than she does.... for crappy pay.

    As such, we pool both paychecks and then take the same amount for our personal uses. The rest that doesn't get spent in the month gets put in vacation finds and savings account.
     
  19. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    My husband makes about four times what I do. It's a nonissue-what we make is for our family, period.

    However, it does bother me that he makes so much more when I know I could be making that in another profession.
     
  20. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    In society, the man usually makes more & that's accepted (or expected as the case may be). But, let's say I made a little more than my BF/husband, that wouldn't matter to me. It would probably bother me if I make more than $10K/yr more because it's getting to be a larger gap. I'd much rather it be where we need HIS salary to pay the bills, not where we need mine to pay the bills. However, I'd make enough to support myself if the marriage ever ended.
     
  21. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    My husband makes almost twice what I do. We put our money into a joint account and pay all the bills with that. However about 5 years ago, we started our own little bank accounts. We put a little money each month into our separate accounts. If we want a toy, we don't feel guilty about it.
     
  22. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    My husband is also a teacher. He makes a tiny bit more than I do because he has an additional degree, though I've been teaching longer than he has so it almost balances out. We keep separate accounts and split the bills.
     
  23. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I spent 5 years as a Stay at Home Mom, when my only income was from tutoring and freelance writing.

    I had absolutely no issue with it, and neither did Peter. We're a couple, a family. Each of us contributes what we can to make it all work. The fact that I wasn't working meant that our children had the benefit of having mommy home all day. During those years, he didn't have to take a day off when we had a sick child, or worry about juggling his schedule to accomodate mine.

    Now that I'm back to work, he's a little ahead of me on the payscale because he didn't miss those 5 years.

    Again, a total non-issue. Our money is in a joint account.

    I got a check the other day for some freelance work. I cashed the check, and the money is in an envelope in our room. It's not "my" money, it's "our" money, to use as we see fit.

    If either of us plans to spend a significant amount of money we discuss it. For example, I want to enroll Kira in art camp this summer-- we talked about it before I broached the topic with her, since it runs $250. But if I don't feel like bringing my lunch and want to buy it instead, I don't ask for money, I do as I choose.
     
  24. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I should add that we are not married yet. Once we are, we will pool everything together and it will be less of an issue.
     
  25. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    Perhaps I am of the "older" generation but once we got married everything that was mine became ours and everything that was his became ours--whether it was an asset or a liability. All money goes into a one checking account and bills are paid from it. I don't ask him if I can go grocery shopping but we both know that when I do it is going to be between $400-$500. That is probably the largest amount that is spent without a discussion of whether we can afford it or not. Luxury items are discussed but we both tend to get whatever we want. We discussed a budget for our daughter's wedding and until I need to go over the planned budget, we will not talk about it anymore. I just write the checks as needed and mark wedding on them so he knows what it was for. When I get close to our set budget, he will let me know and we will discuss whether we can afford to spend more on it or do we have to start cutting back. We keep a good cushion for any emergency and also have credit cards for emergencies. We live in hurricane alley and need to be able to evacuate at a moment's notice so we keep the "frozen" credit card that has a very high limit and we could live off of it for several months if it were needed. If I want something extra, I only discuss it with him if it is going to take more than 2 credit card billing periods to pay it off but other than that we freely spend from our money as we see fit. It works for us
     
  26. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Grocercy shopping costs 400-500 dollars? How long of a period of time do you buy for? :eek:
     
  27. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    chem~I'm right there with you, though I'm 30!

    Both of us grew up in homes where both parents worked. His parents talk about major expenses before purchasing them. Mine didn't and that caused a huge rift between them that never fully healed. If it's something small like groceries or small purchase of clothes then we don't feel the need to tell each other that we're spending money on that. If it's over a certain amount, then yes we'll sit down and talk about it to see if it's in our budget.
     
  28. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    During my marriage there have been times I was a stay at home mom, times when I made more than dh, times when he made more. Its never been a problem. We're supportive of each other and each other's biggest fans.
     
  29. orangetea

    orangetea Connoisseur

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    Thank you guys for this! It was nice to hear everyone's response.
    I sometimes worry about the "unfairness" part of it because I feel like he works more than I do, but I guess that's his own choice.
     
  30. BettyRubble

    BettyRubble Rookie

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    I don't know what kind of doctor he is going to be but if he works long, odd hours, chances are the majority of house upkeep and child rearing (if you have kids) will be on you...that will more than make up for the difference in income you bring in (in my opinion. :)
     
  31. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    My boyfriend is a mechanical engineer. He has worked at the same company for 10 years and is so high up that he only has two people over him- his boss, and the owner of the company. With that being said, salaries here SUCK. They are really, really low. If I were teaching in NC (as a 2nd year teacher) I would make more than him. Here in Costa Rica, he makes more than me, but not by very much. Maybe like $8000-$9000 more per year.

    I can't wait to move back to the states and have him make a butt load of money being an engineer. I love vacations and we'll have enough money to pay for them!!!:)
     
  32. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    My boyfriend makes twice as much as I do (he's an engineer), but it doesn't really bother me. We split costs like groceries and cleaning supplies 50/50. He just bought a house (in his name only), and we moved in together. I pay him rent. I know things will change when we get married someday. Right now everything is kept very separate.

    The frustrating part is that he works 50 hours per week at one job, and I work about 70 hours per week between two jobs, and he makes twice as much as I do. GRRR!
     
  33. lilmisses1014

    lilmisses1014 Comrade

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    I wouldn't see it as unfair. The money we bring in is OUR money, regardless of who earns more. (Currently, we're bringing in the same amount, but that's about to change very soon.) My husband-- an attorney-- and I married shortly after he began law school. Most of that time I was earning (a lot) more than he was, supporting us and establishing savings. We have so much student loan debt, though, that it doesn't matter how much we bring in until those suckers are paid off. :p
     

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