I was contracted to review some pre-marital counseling curriculum of a major organization in a certain country.
I was excited to do this simply because intellectual property development is my super power and being a consulting job the pay was also good(Don’t ask me how much)
My first consulting job in America was intellectual property development for a major organization and they were so impressed at my delivery that they just started dropping my names with all their contacts
Anyway as we sat in the room to analyze what was on ground and see how relevant some of the concepts were. I couldn’t but notice a number of presuppositions and I will share a number of them;
- It is a man’s responsibility to out-earn his wife so that he can take care of her
This presupposition didn’t take into consideration the fact that some women are silver spoons while some had developed themselves so well that they had become high networth individuals before marriage and seeking to outearn such is setting up yourself for untimely death. The bigger question should have been if such a man can lead a high level woman as against earning more than her.
In our reviews we noticed that a lot of men within that community had struggled with wives who earned more than them and some of the high profile marital break ups in there could be directly traced to inability to manage a woman who earned more.
We decided to engage some of the married groups in a closed session to discuss this particular presupposition and it was interesting to hear some of the men voice out the propensity of wives to become proud if they earned more than their husbands. Guess what? Most of the women disagreed and a number of them felt insecurity was the real issue and low leadership ability.
I found this particular session interesting as it revealed deep seated beliefs that traded what should be a blessing for competition and sacrificed marital bliss on the altar of ego.
At the end of the engagement we discovered
- The men who couldn’t stand their wives earning more than them had their leadership tied to economic superiority and see it as a threat when a woman earns more
- The men in this category had fathers who literally controlled their households as providers and whose wives looked up to them for economic sustenance
- The women who earned more than their men wanted men who could lead them and provide direction not necessarily more money
- Some of the women who couldn’t trust their men with their money complained about the lack of openness of their men about what they also earned.
- Everyone agreed that trust was a major issue on both sides and that lack of trust had affected how they saw one another when it came to family economy
- The scariest part was that not a single couple at the meeting had a uniform definition or ideology about marriage and what was playing out in their handling of money was how each person was raised by their individual families
It was a very interesting session for me and this was just one of the several presuppositions that drove what people had been taught over the years and it drove me into assisting more organizations upgrade their family life curriculum into what can promote the best interest of the marital vision of every couple.
We created an intervention for the group and it was interesting to see some of the old beliefs give way as they started embracing a team based approach where everyone worked so hard to create what served the best interest of the family as against working in silos.
This experience showed first hand that nothing is truly as damaging to a new truth like an old error where that old error could have been an accepted truth that may has outlived its usefulness or dispensation
Not every woman is coming into marriage with poverty hoping to be bailed out by a saviour husband
Not every woman who earns more than a man would become proud because what some are looking for is beyond money
Not every man who earns less than women is lazy and such a gold digger.
There are men who may not earn as much but can provide solid leadership
When couples perceive earnings as internally generated revenue that boosts family economy better decisions are made
I hope this helped.
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