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Money Imbalance In Relationships

by Riley Cook

Every now and again we find ourselves wondering, “What if I make more money than him, will he still like me?” It’s no surprise that men like to lead in relationships and apart of leading is providing.

I went to Dunkin' Donuts the other day and a couple was standing in front of me; a Latina woman and an African-American man. When it came time to pay, the woman took a $20 bill from her purse to which her partner snatched it from her hand and handed it to the cashier.

The cashier then proceeded to gather their change as the gentleman looked on. Once the change was ready, he reached his hand to collect it. The woman standing next to him smiled awkwardly as he placed the change in his pocket. Ladies, this is an example of money imbalance in a relationship.

This moment reminded me of an episode of Girlfriends when Tony handed Greg money under the table to pay for their dinner. She did this because her co-workers were at the adjacent table and she did not want them to see that her man couldn’t afford their bill.

Believe it or not, this happens quite often in relationships, especially today. Women are becoming the breadwinners while men are taking a more submissive role in the household. What do I mean by this? It’s no surprise that women make money with their minds while men make money with their hands.

Unfortunately, in 2023 it’s become easier to be a creative online or an influencer which requires little to no skill. Plus, the uptick in OnlyFans creatives which favors women over men. Most men are okay with this while others, well….I’ll let you take a look at a recent exchange I had on the Bumble app after this potential suitor found out my occupation. I was rather disappointed, but hey, I get it, he’s in his masculine energy.


As I’ve mentioned in previous articles most men will not want to settle down or be in a relationship if their finances are not in order, most masculine men that is. If you find yourself in a situation where a man is jobless, homeless, or financially unstable but is rushing a relationship with you, be aware that he is most likely operating in his feminine energy or is a hobosexual. Either way, things don’t look good and you should reconsider your relationship dynamic with that person.

On the other hand, when there is an imbalance of power aka one person out earns their partner a few things can take place:


This is when your partner begins hiding information as it pertains to their finances. This is usually when a woman out earns her man but instead of telling him this, she puts the extra income away making him no more the wiser. If you have to resort to this then you’re in the wrong relationship. Most men when they’re dating a woman and learn that she earns more will not use this against her, instead, they may suggest a way to invest the extra income. He is not thinking about himself, he is thinking about the relationship he shares with you.


Guilt is an emotion that one will feel if they out earn their partner, however, this only happens if your partner makes you believe that earning more is a bad thing. This is usually where immature men will look to humble their lady—getting her pregnant when she’s in school studying for a doctorate or up for a big promotion at work.

There are always signs that your man is either jealous of your accomplishments or simply insecure about them. Do not feel bad for being ambitious, instead take this moment to reevaluate the relationship and decide if upgrading your suitor maybe best for you in the long run.


Discussing income disparity can be difficult for some partners and this is when they tend to confide in outside parties. Before you know it they’re emotionally cheating which oftentimes can lead to physical cheating. It’s never a good thing when one partner stops communicating with the other over insecurities.

More often than not these types of relationships seldom work out. Once a man begins feeling inferior he will either take his frustrations out on you or leave the relationship altogether. There’s an episode of Sex and the City where Carrie is in a relationship with Berger. Carrie receives a book advance of $25,000.

Both Carrie and Berger are signed to the same publishing company, however, his books are not selling as well as hers. Whilst feeling elated about her book advance she shares this information with her boyfriend and even invests in a shirt for him. He is perturbed and distraught by this, later on realizing that he cannot be with her because he simply feels inferior. Berger then leaves Carrie a breakup note on a post-it he found in her apartment.

While it can be uncomfortable to have the “money” conversation with a new or existing partner, it is a necessary evil. But, this conversation should never entail a man asking a woman about her finances—unless you’re married and he needs information about your debtbut rather the other way around.

If you’re dating someone and he appears to be uncomfortable spending money, angry, or downright silent when the bill comes, then its safe to say that he is not financially stable. Men who engage in conversation topics surrounding the finances of a woman are usually looking for a woman to aid them, those are the 50/50 warriors.

There is nothing wrong with 50/50, but this does not happen when you’re looking for a romantic partner. Men who share expenses with a friend or family member in the home during their building phase are more likely to want a romantic partner to whom they can provide once he is stable enough to do so.

Stop letting men convince you that you need to go 50/50 with them to be in a happy, healthy relationship. As a woman, it is your job to make his life easier—make him breakfast, lunch, dinner, grab his dry cleaning, do errands, etc.

I get it, not all women want to be a kept woman, but for those who do, stop entertaining 50/50 men and know that you have responsibilities in the home when he is the sole breadwinner. You cannot be useless. Women and men express love differently but don’t let money be the deciding factor on whether or not you’re devoted to your partner.


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