At the risk of sounding like a bad feminist, I think women should marry for money. Okay, not just for money (I’d never suggest marrying a cheating, narcissistic, A-hole just because he has millions in his bank account), but money should be a factor in your decision to pursue a lifelong commitment with a guy.
Marriage is difficult enough as it is without adding poverty to the mix. Yes, you love him now and think he’s better looking than that Edward dude from Twilight, but when children, work and the mundanity of actuallife start entering the equation, you will start to realise how a lack of money can turn a fairy-tale into a nightmare – on Elm Street.
Here are my top reasons why you should marry as rich a man as you can:
1. Double standards
Have you ever heard a man being described as a ‘hottie-digger’? No. Seemingly, it’s acceptable for men to value women for their looks. Men want beautiful women – or as beautiful as they can get. Yet, when women value men for their financial soundness, we’re described as gold-diggers. I think that is completely unfair. What’s good for the goose should be good for the gander, and if men are allowed to value something as shallow as the size of our butts, then we should be allowed to value something as shallow as the size of their bank accounts.
2. Love and marriage go together like divorce and sadness
Sorry ladies, but all sorts of research has come out over the last decade linking high divorce rates with romantic love. In Committed, Elizabeth Gilbert postulates that Western culture places too much emphasis on romantic love. “A recent survey of young American women found that what women are seeking these days in a husband – more than anything else – is a man who will ‘inspire’ them, which is, by any measure, a tall order. As a point of comparison, young women of the same age, surveyed back in the 1920s, were more likely to choose a partner based on qualities such as ‘decency,’ ‘honesty,’ or his ability to provide for a family.”
Perhaps this emphasis on finding a man who will “complete us” is why the divorce rate is so high. “Anything that the heart has chosen for its own mysterious reasons its can always unchoose later – again, for its own mysterious reaons. A shared private heaven can quickly turn into a failed private hell,” writes Gilbert.
As Gilbert points out in her book, marriage in the Middle Ages was a “highly efficient form of wealth management and social order… it became the single most important business arrangement people would ever make in their lives.” The transformation of marriage from this into a “badge of emotional affection has weakened the institution considerably over time – because marriages based on love are, as it turns out, just as fragmented as love itself.”
In an interview with AOL Health, authors of the book Smart Girls Marry Money, also highlight this point. Daniela Drake said that the notion of romantic love resulting in long-lasting marriages is a relatively new idea that has come to the fore in the last 150 years.
“When it came into the zeitgeist of the late 1800s – that people should be marrying for these romantic feelings that they have for each other – social commentators at the time were saying, ‘Well if people marry for love, when they’re not in love anymore, they’ll leave. The family will be an unstable unit.’ Even back then, they predicted that the divorce rate would go up to around 50 percent,” she commented in the interview.
3. “Money doesn’t buy happiness, but I’d rather cry in a Ferrari”
Obviously money doesn’t buy happiness, but it sure can make life more fun. I used to date a guy who was perennially in debt. We never had money to move into a bigger place, to go out for dinner or to even buy food in the middle of the month (I had to ask my folks to bail us out). And no matter how much I loved him, my love quickly turned into resentment when we were constantly worried about money. Not only that, but whenever we did go out for lunch or dinner, or even a few drinks, I had to pay for it.
Living in a small, cramped apartment, with no money to go out is not a nice way to live. Date nights, holidays, buying gifts for each other – these are things that make relationships much easier.
And, according to research, money problems are the leading cause of divorce. A study by Sonya Britt (Examining the Relationship between Financial Issues and Divorce) published in 2012 concluded (unsurprisingly) that arguments about money are the top predictor of divorce. And arguments about money usually result when there isn’t enough of it. I am telling you people, relationships are hard enough. Money is like a lubricant to life’s creaky hinges. I love my husband dearly, but the fact he is a qualified agricultural economist with earning potential makes life easier, trust me.
4. Men naturally have more money
Women tend to earn less than men (a 2015 United Nations report states that globally, women earn 24% less than men). This is because of job availability (companies hire men over women), time taken off work (maternity leave, leaving work to take care of children) and gender discrimination (women are just paid less).
Although women have made huge strides in the past few decades, we are still not equal with men. So if society puts a structure in place whereby men will earn more money than women (based on the simple fact that they are men), and women need to take time off work to take care of children, why is it considered in bad taste to ensure that you hitch your wagon to a man who can provide?
I will always have a job and will always contribute to household expenses, but a man with the ability to really provide for me and my children is important to me.
5. There are plenty of fish in the sea
To those who believe in soulmates and fated love – I laugh in your face. There are so many men and women in the world, and so many people we can love and get on with (albeit in different ways). If you’ve had more than one serious partner in your life, you will know your capability to deeply love different people.
When I chose my husband, part of that choice was based on his education and his earning potential. I truly love him, but I knew that I couldn’t marry a poor man (more specifically, someone likely to remain permanently poor). I knew I could get on with various people, and I chose to continue with our courting based on factors more than just passion and love.
Of course, a man might be poor now but that may be because he is launching a new business, or studying to become an engineer. I’m not saying you should discount these men. Discount the men who will never rise above living from pay check to pay check. Trust me, your fairy tale will soon turn into a nightmare.
The article was written by Lisa-Marie Lloyd.