I read this article today in the Times about the rising percentage of women who make more than their counterpart.
One of the things the article mentions is men's need for marriage for mental and health well-being, which I have read before. I also know that married men live longer lives than unmarried men. However, the opposite is true for women. Not all that surprising considering men typically don't have the kind of support network that women create for themselves through friendships and community relationships. So marriage often becomes the center point of communication and the stabilizing factor. (Assuming it is a healthy happy marriage)
This article also talks about how increasingly more and more educated and higher earning women are marrying men with less education and less earnings. For men, getting married not only means happier mental lives but also a financial gain!
I consider this phenomenon as one of the after effects in this post-feminism era (I define feminism as the early 1970s movement). The other after effect is the popularity of pole dancing along with the entire culture of "girls gone wild" as forms of female "empowerment" and "confidence". Sadly, that's the face of feminism now as interpreted by popular culture.
Now, am I part of this wave of role reversal? Yes. I have had many boyfriends who hold Ivy League degrees (I have two myself) and earned as much as I made (I work in advertising as an art director). They were equally interested in the arts, theater, films, music. Most of them were from a solid family background with parents who also hold at least a bachelor's degree. But these boyfriends didn't last. I find myself increasingly drawn to working class, blue collar men who didn't go to college, does not earn a lot, and often live paycheck by paycheck. Am I being a romantic classist? Maybe. I've been on my own since I left Texas and earned money on my own through college and graduate school. I've never borrowed money from anyone, friends or family. I actually send money home to my parents when I can! So unlike some girls I've talked to who crave to marry someone rich like a doctor, I've never thought about marriage as a goal or something I wanted. Why would I? I make my own money. What would I gain by marrying someone? I've been thinking about this long and hard. And the answer, I think is a house husband.
Yes. Someone who can take care of my domestic life because I have no interest in "nesting". I don't enjoy cleaning. I don't find it therapeutic or calming. I don't like cooking and I eat food out of the container so I don't have to wash extra dishes. I rather spend my time designing something whether its web site, a costume, a new choreography, and I rather socialize than stay in. If I ever spawn a human being from my body, I will kill myself if I have to be a stay at home mom. So I need someone to balance that part of my life. And to do these things, you don't really need fancy college degrees. You just have to look pretty, keep me stimulated and sane, give me emotional support and praise, and have sex with me. I want a male wife like the wives from Mad Men.
So maybe with this new role reversal, it's time for men to step it up and re-evaluate their market value outside of the market, so to speak. Instead of bank accounts, cars, and social status, perhaps its their emotional intelligence, intuition, listening skills, and skills in the bed room that will give us women the kind of domestic bliss that we can't buy with our fancy earnings.