Should Men Pay All The Bills?

I am fascinated by relationships, by our very human need for love and companionship, and everything in between. I am also a hopeless romantic, so everything about relationships to me, is beautiful. But we all know that this is not the reality and lately, the more I speak to people, the more it seems to me that the basis, the foundation, the crux, the soul, if you wish, of most relationships, is finance. It makes or breaks relationships, partnerships, marriages. If you are looking to find a husband or a wife, you better be ready to discuss finances I think.

Photo source: www.clipartof.com
Photo source: http://www.clipartof.com

So without further ado, my big question really is; is the man responsible for taking care of the woman financially, whether they be boyfriend/girlfriend, partners, husband/wife? Should a man pay all the bills in the home should they be married and have children? Is the man responsible for paying the bills, whatever they may be? I spoke to men and women alike and what an interesting mix of responses.

Almost all the women I spoke to told me that they wanted to be with a man whom they were sure could take care of them. Women told me that the man had better be ready to pay for a trip to the salon, a vacation abroad, meals when they were out, gadgets including mobile phone credits, and shopping sprees. One person asked me of what use the man was if he could not provide for her?

“I equate love to gifts, if a man gives me stuff, then he clearly cares about me.” Another woman told me.

It depends on the relationship, if a man is wealthy, then it would not be a problem to provide for his woman. However, if he were struggling and earning a certain income like the woman, it may seem unreasonable to expect him to cater to everything. Someone said to me that men are providers, and feel much more happy and in control when they are able to provide for the people in their lives without having to ask the woman to contribute. But doesn’t it also depend on the relationship being shared by both parties? If both people are in a partnership built on a solid foundation of friendship and equality, then naturally most responsibilities will be shared fairly depending on income bracket. In this part of the world though, that seems far fetched, as most relationships are still very traditional, with the woman expected to be submissive to the man, the man is in control and is not necessarily accountable to her for his actions.

In order to maintain this position, a man is required to pay all the bills and occassionally give a monthly allowance to his woman. her responsibility is to take care of him and the home front, prepare the meals, raise the children, respect and honour him, and defer to him, even though she has a job. To women, when a man takes care of the finances, it makes it easier for them to submit and revere him as tradition/society requires. A friend once told me that she often found resentment in her heart, because her husband did not play any active role in the house, except grudgingly bankroll stuff. She had a job as a teacher which did not pay much, however, she was on her feet all day, and was exhausted by the time she got home. He insisted on freshly cooked meals, and would never get up when the baby cried at night.

source:annechia.com
source:annechia.com

I spoke to some men who told me that they could never be with a woman who makes more money than they did. This to them would be too dicey. Women can be quite mouthy and unable to control their emotions. More money would give a woman a big head, and she would very quickly slag off her husband and be disrespectful.

“She can keep her money, I will provide for my house. I am the head of the family.” Someone told me.

Again it depends on the situation, if a woman kept all her money and spent all the man’s income (if he’s not rich), will there be resentment at the end of the day on the man’s part? Will he wonder what she did with the stash she earns? A former colleague once told me that he was married to the most selfish “nuisance” (yes he called his wife that) on the face of the earth. Apparently, she refused to tell him how much she earned, but she knew his’. He could tell that she made quite a bit of money, about 10% less than he did, he knew because he determined the average salary of people on her grade level. Not only did he not know how much she earned, he paid for everything in the house including her personal items and “grooming” including brazillian hair which cost him as much as $1000, and which she proceeded to weave unto her scalp. He was nagged for months until he saved and paid for the fake hair. She would go off with her girlfriends and buy really stunning jewelry and beautiful shoes, and then ask him for money for food for the house and toiletries too.

Source:sodahead.com
Source:sodahead.com

It made him resentful because he could not treat himself much, as he was down to zero at the end of the month. On the other hand, some men require that their wives hand over their salary at the end of the month/on pay day. He then gives her what she needs from it. That shows that a woman is respectful of her husband and is submissive as stated in the good book. There are also scenarios where the woman pays for stuff and would do it through her husband so that he does not feel like less of a man. For example, there are casual workers who have come to fix the plumbing or the fence, she then gives him money to pay them. The dynamics of relationships are always very interesting.

I spoke to a few men and women who are quite progressive and told me that both parties must share all responsibilities; whether they be financial and/or domestic, if both parties have jobs. That way, everybody feels like they are part of the relationship and nobody feels used, or feels like a freeloader. These progressives believe that the two parties should split the bills if they are living under one roof. Two salaries/income streams are certainly good and can provide a better lifestyle for the couple and their family. With two incomes, it may be easier to live in a nice house, or perhaps take a vacation or buy a home. One person should only have to pay for stuff all the time should the other party be laid off from work.

source:elitevirginhair.com
source:elitevirginhair.com

Are women really golddiggers? This is the vibe I got from speaking to people. Men here say women are consistently nagging them for stuff. You take a woman out today, you are not even sure you want to see her again, and the next day, she’s calling you and trying to get you to buy her brazillian hair, or a new iPhone. Women on the other hand, say men are selfish and are consistently playing with multiple girls on the side, and that although they do not admit it, men like the power of wielding their wallets and get very intimidated once a woman wants to pick up the bill. If she does, she is arrogant, will never make a good partner in a relationship and is “showing herself”. I personally, will attempt to contribute on a date, and will look out for body language. If a man says no, I will never ask again, but will do other things like buy tickets so both of us can see something, or get dessert. It’s a path to be threaded carefully.

What do you think about finances in a relationship? Should a man pay all the bills? Have the times changed at all? A part 2 has now been written for this post. Read it here

54 thoughts on “Should Men Pay All The Bills?”

  1. Should be shared! Usually, if a guy really likes a girl and they have the money, they will spend it on her. But I think guys appreciate when a woman brings out some cash as well… For herself and for her man.

    1. That is true, if a man likes a girl, he’ll like to share what he has with her. Sharing is great, but what does it mean for both parties, and under what cicumstances? Again the dynamics of the relationship and economic situation of both parties come to play I think. Thanks for reading and commenting

  2. To m nd every reasonabl woman,u shld see ursef as a helpmate 2ur hubby.Buh at d same time,no man shld bully m into bringin my money.its somthn I shld do willingly out of lov

    1. Hmmm so is this bullying common in our relationships then? I think that sharing or “helping” is great. I do not think any party should be bullied or guilted into handing over his/her cash without willingness on each side. I have heard about men who ask their women to hand over paychecks! I have never been able to understand that. Even children keep their pocket money and spend it with parental guidance. What do you call this one? Spousal guidance?

  3. I am on an iPad so cannot give a detailed response, but the short answer is no, a guy shouldn’t have the pay for everything, it should be a two way street. I pay for most things, but then I earn more than my missus so that is understandable, but even there she will pay for some things.

    If I was dating someone and they did even offer to put their hand in their pocket, I wouldn’t bother pursuing that person further.

    1. Sounds like a balanced relationship to me. If you were out of work for an extended period, she would pay for more stuff obviously. But looks like you don’t have a traditional relationship so to say, I know you cook sometimes.

      1. I enjoy cooking 🙂 whilst there are lots I dont do that would traditionally be classed as work women would do in the house, i dont really subscribe to those ways as x, y and z is what a woman would do and a, b and c is what a man would do. I think those opinions are dated these days.

  4. The fact is; it is the man’s responsibility to take care of his family as the head of the household. Translation – men should pay the bills and whether a woman earns or not is secondary to that fact! Except she is widowed, no woman should try to wear the pants in the house. Of course there are a few rare situations where a woman could pay “some” bills if she has the money. An uncle of mine once told me that he isn’t interested in how much his wife earns, He is the man of the house and it’s his sole responsibility to provide for his family. His wife knowing that my uncle doesn’t give the devil’s care about her finances, decided to be spending some of her money on him perhaps to show him how much she appreciates his hard work. According to her, “my husband labors all day to put a roof over our head and I will make sure he does that looking as good as he possibly can!”
    Personally, I am put off by a man who from the beginning is interested in whether I have a job, how much I earn and then goes on and on about how much he loves independent women, blah the blah! That’s a sure sign for me that he is not confident in his ability to provide for me so he’s checking to see that I can take care of myself. As Erica Jong said, “Beware of the man who praises women’s liberation. He is about to quit his job.” Hehehe…Chiamy I could go on and on about this and take up all your blog space, so my whole point is: No man should expect or think for any reason whatsoever that his wife, partner or girlfriend should pay any, all or part of the bills!

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting. The Erica Jong comment is quite illuminating hahaha. There are certainly people who are “cleaners” and that applies to both sexes. To each his own I think. What am curious about though, is how the dynamics of a relationship in which one party paid for everything, would play out, if the “paying” party were to have a change in fortune; lose a job or experience bad luck/collapse of business.

    2. Im a guy and a husband. I think the boyfriend or husband should pay all the bills even if he has to work 2 jobs or extra hours. Many men in todays society have become spoiled. Wives have to pull together and get back to old basics. If he really loves you and is healthy and can work…MAKE HIM PAY!….If the wife has credit cards…she shouldnt be afraid to use them…its a womans nature to shop….MAKE HIM PAY! The man was made to work…a relationship is work….MAKE HIM WORK and PAY!!!! Our marriage has always been built on that foundation and Im still alive…lol

      1. I thought your last line was really funny haha. I know many relationships work this way. But surely there must be a downside to letting a man pay all the bills?

      2. I couldn’t agree more a man should be the sole provider and should not count on his girlfriends/wife’s finances.

      3. It’s a win win with two incomes. My husband is rare- pays our bills online and does our taxes…. He makes me feel less worried and I know that I can give him my money and trust he does best with it. More relationships should be opened and more accounts should be shared. A lack of trust leads to Divorce.

    3. I agree totally. Right now my husband’s mother has told him that I need to split the bills with him. I already feel uncomfortable with it. Up to now, I have been a housewife, plus I work from I contribute to the house but not as much in cash. I cover all the emergencies and trips. Plus, when we are short in the bank. Plus, I cook, clean and do all the grocery shopping and putting away.

      1. My wife and I agree that men should pay the bills…but many people especially women disagree with that belief especially in today’s world. Lets face it people that think like us are apparently a dying breed. So rather than argue with them we will give them they’re space. Also I dont see anything wrong with a wife having fun shopping now and then at the husbands expense, even if its once a year she deserves that much. BUt ok, I will shut up now…..lol

  5. Lovely post Anne! Indeed, finance matters can be an issue in a relationship. Well, on this side of the world…the men are expected to pay most of the bills however, I think its all gradually changing now. The reason is because, there are many women out there who are doing really well and earn good income. I think it all depends on the persons involved in the relationship. In my view, I do not see anything wrong in the women supporting in paying the bills. I have said ‘supporting’ because, sometime, when a woman is nice, it could be mistaken to mean something different. Ultimately, if they are honest and open to each other…money matters will likely cause little or no problem.

    1. Ijeoma, I think I lov ur balance.A real man should provide 4his household or atleast make reasonabl efforts to do so. On the other hand, bn a wise woman,I shld be willin enough 2b a good supporter in d home. Guys dnt make budgets or plans on ur womans money. A wisewoman wl lend u a hand when she sees d efforts u are making. When there’s openess nd healthy communication,U wnt need to verbalise ur need 4help

  6. Annie, money is very important but does not make for all the asset in a relationship. I think women will rather suffer time poverty than suffer financial poverty. There should be a balance to money, time and all shared by the two to achieve wellbeing. No one should take privilege without responsibilities.

    1. You know, I never thought about it in the “time” context. Time is a critical part of any relationship, whether it is time spent with the partner, or time invested in making a life for one another. It seems reasonable that all resources are shared using a formular acceptable to both parties. Certainly nobody should take priviledges without responsibilities.

  7. To each his own. In the part of the world where I live, we both contribute in everything. Financially, emotionally, spiritually and totally. Once, it is a situation that affects the both of us. All the same, it also depends on the income, you contribute according to what you earn. You know like tax payers, where the rich has to pay more.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting Mary. Invariably, culture and expectations have a lot of influence on how we live our lives. You know that here it is still quite traditional, whereas I may think it is only fair to share and support, the menfolk may regard it as effrontery 🙂 It is important to have a balanced relationship; like you mentioned, contributing in everything.

  8. Ooh, this is a hot topic! I’ve been married sixteen years, and in our relationship, we’ve both contributed equally. Early in the relationship, my husband made more money than me, but for the last five years, it has shifted. All of our money has gone into one account and I’ve done the finances for the last thirteen years or so. We each get the same weekly allotment of spending money and it’s not based on what we contribute.

    This is a different topic entirely, but the housework is where things are still unbalanced. I’d love to see him help with the cleaning more! To keep my resentment from building, there are things that I just refused to clean (his sink, his shower, etc.) and I get the kids involved with cleaning, too. I’m not the maid. We both have full-time jobs, so I think that’s fair 🙂

    1. Hahaha the short sentence before the last line made me laugh so hard! It is a very hot topic, and there are so many schools of thought on it. I think whatever works for a couple sans problems is “ideal”. If a relationship is at a point where both parties are comfortable with finances and level of effort around the house, then they are the lucky ones. Sounds to me like you’ve found your rhythm.
      Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device from MTN

      1. Women should be a helper/ but the man is built/ to provide. So in that no your role in the relationship both have to give

        Women= help mate
        Man=provider

        Together = team

      2. Humans mindset varies from generation to the next . Women roles has increased due to the financial increase through job opportunities and female neimg just as strong as men. So I feel it’s equal so the responsibilities should fall in that same line.

  9. Here’s my two cents. I think it kinda depends on your relationship. But I would rather have the finances split up so that one person isn’t overburdened with all the financial responsibilities. With the state of the economy I would think it unfair to have just the men shoulder the entire financial responsibility just like how I think its unfair to relegate the entire house chores and responsibility to the woman. Relationships (depending on the kind you have) is a partnership. Two heads are better than one. Pulling resources would help both the man and woman reach their financial goals on time.
    But hey that’s just my opinion.

    1. I think the household chores portion is still very much left for the woman. I will look into doing a post on that soon. Times are indeed hard, global economies are struggling. Although a lot of people may not see it as they live their lives on a day to day basis, sharing as you mentioned may be the only way to deal with it and still have a good lifestyle. Thanks for stopping by Chinwe.

      1. Sometimes I have to work extra hours but Im happy when my wifes happy. She likes to shop and i dont mind paying for it. I still manage to put a little away in the bank to.

      2. Well maybe for some the money is tight. We all dont have the same ambition. I can understand that. But if we put our minds to something that we really want, we can get it to happen.

  10. im not saying all wives should go out and get credit cards…i kinda worded it bad i guess….my wife likes shopping and living on the edge…and that was one of the things i liked about her. Maybe Im the same way. Its the kind of relationship we have, for us its hot. But keeping the cards payed is the challenge. you got to really love the other person to go that route. I dont think many couples are into charging as a fun thing. But then again we are all different.

      1. It is indeed David. I am just going through an incredibly busy phase as I am working towards a master’s degree. Term finishes next week and I break for 2 months. Expect lots of interesting stuff then. Thanks for checking in, I hope you are well 🙂

  11. A sucessful relationship should be built on love and understanding with trust, financial differences shouldn’t be a problem. Both parties should understand that love is not exploitative, with that they can both settle. But i personally do not seem to understand why men feel disturbed and see a woman been arrogant when she tries to help financially….

    1. All very true. I think it is because of the way society has certain expectations of a man and a woman, to the extent that both parties internalise these gender roles and can feel quite threatened when it seems the other party is encroaching. To each their own I suppose. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  12. I’m actually trying to decide this now & because im an educated feminist who has also never been married & based on what I have seen in my household it’s really hard to reconcile with just one view so I’ve come up with my happy medium. I plan on getting a job that pays very well & my hope is that my husband does too. I feel like my husband should do w/e possible to put a roof over our heads, pay the utilities, car insurance, needs fees basically & I will worry about my wants. I can pay for my own hair/cell phone bill/clothes/credit cards etc because I would like to keep that power. I still expect him to take me out on dates & vacations & I will not be selfish with the extra cash I get to save by spoiling my dutiful hubby. I’ve seen the cost women pay for having a man who provides 100% for them financially.

    1. Thank you for stopping by. To each their own, as long as both parties are happy with the arrangement and nobody feels used. Goodluck with finding that excellent job and a good man

  13. WOW in a world were women claim equality that does not seem equal to me. when u think the man should pay for everything .equality goes out the window quick when it comes to money !!!

  14. I think bills should be split based on income. So if the man makes 75% more than then his women, she old pays 25% of the bills. Unless she is a fulltime house wife then the man pays 100%. This way both add value to the relationship. What about blended family’s? Things get way harder and if the man has to pay for everything and his new wife has kids from another relationship… This is why splitting bills based on income is the best way.

  15. A man should pay for everything. Why should a woman cook and clean the house? Why should i have to do a mans laundy, wash our sheets? Please tell me why? and at the same time be expected to go grocery shopping and cook/ prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner. That’s absolutely ridiculous. I feel like UGLY women are the ones who conform to this paying BS. It angers me! There are plenty of men who would pay for everything without questioning it. I am a beautiful woman and have always gone for attractive men. I think this is the problem. A more unnatractive man is more willing to support a woman to the fullest.
    My current boyfriend expects me to pay. I make 24k a year and he makes 80 k. How TF does that even make sense. Im leaving for his ignorance. Thats a tight ass man. You expect me to pay rent, buy groceries, split bills a have sex with you? Get the F out of here.

    1. I totally agree with you. The man should always pay. My wife runs up credit cards all the time but I have to pay them, but I dont mind. Women who feel the way we do should get together and form they’re own site. If a husband wants his wife to work, a wife should learn to be a total Bi_ch and say NOOOO!

  16. How about people stop bitching about who pays for this or that and worry more about making a system that works for everyone. I’m so sick of this pathetic society where a woman feels like the man should pay for everything. A man and a woman should cater to one another as the book says (since everyone seems to be into God) So many relationships will die because people are on this stupid road on who should do this and that. How about how much does this person love me for myself and not petty temporary objects that comes and goes. Women what will you do if your man gets laid off who was making that 50k pay? Do you love him enough to look past that and stay with him Or do you think to leave him? If you leave then that man is most likely better off without someone petty and selfish like you. Men don’t fall for this trap. Women half of the time still don’t bust they ass for the man even if he is providing. Women stop thinking sex is your gift to your man… TF is wrong with you? It takes two and the man does most of the work in bed anyway. Couples should deal with their issues and money status as a damn couple. No picking sides and no living by the Bible since most of us on here aren’t actually living by it anyway, but love to quote scripture from the book. Ugh! This world is so fucked up people have no clue. I think people don’t know what was meant by providing. That doesn’t mean get your woman some $500 shoes when she is unhappy when you have some way more important to do then you tend to that (like keeping a roof over your head) that is how you provide. It doesn’t mean the man has to pay for everything or the woman, it is more controlled than what we try to make it. Nothing wrong with making her happy, but I’m going to get the car fixed than buy her some real but still fake hair to sew in. Do you people actually think, since they say Jesus was married, that he paid for everything? No. He made his wife happy most likely treating her with respect, love and affection.. not some form of money. This world has become so driven by material shit that we will never become that type 1 civilization we should have been already.

  17. David I find your connects interesting, I’m a male by the way . So in return what is your wife’s role? Example if you take on full responsibility on the financial side then she must take on the nurturing side fully?

  18. It painful to hear how pipo reason. and is obvious some women will Neva get husband. to me, both shud be responsible, esp w en d woman earns more. marriage is no competition

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