I’ve supported two non-earning ‘male’ partners in the past, each for a year. Have put ‘male’ in italics as typically, non-earning partner refers to a female. Indeed it is difficult, but then I wonder, how millions of men with their dependent wives do not find it difficult.
In the course of my conversation with 3 educated, working women friends, I casually brought this up when they asked the whereabouts of my partner and here’s what they said –
29 Year old Professional – You are a fool, you should look out for a partner who earns more than you.
Me – I wish this had been possible but we get to pick the best of ‘only’ what comes our way.
33 Year old feminist writer – I’ve always been careful to select male partners who earn more than me, even friends. In fact, whenever I go out, they never let me pay the bill.
Me -I wish I could get someone to pay my bills too but I’ve got this niggling worm of ‘self-esteem’ scuffing my neck if I do.
48 Year old Yoga instructor – Oh! You’ve left your husband. It must be difficult for you to survive financially.
Me – Yes, it is difficult to stay financially afloat, I cringe in fear thinking about rent, school fees, home loan, medical costs, groceries. But it is nowhere more difficult than staying in a defunct, loveless, sexless marriage and having promiscuous relationships outside to relieve the strain.