Welcome back to guest blogger Maureen Kelley!
Maureen has been a financial advisor, private banker and wealth manager for nearly 30 years. A certified family coach and financial therapist, today she helps people with conversations and challenges beyond the money. With a unique perspective, she writes and blogs, facilitates workshops and retreats, and coaches individuals through their struggles with money. Maureen is a passionate advocate for empowering and engaging women to have healthy relationships with money. For more information visit: www.madreandfamily.com
This week, we will show you Part 1 of an article written by Maureen on the changing dynamics of couples when the female is the primary breadwinner.
As gender inequality continues to improve in the workforce, more women than ever now find themselves in the position of family breadwinner. (A position I understand.) No longer is their focus specifically on how to manage finances or making educated investment decisions. When it comes to financial therapy, women are having a now moment, asking for advice on how to best handle greater earnings and career success while maintaining a healthy marriage. Often surprised by a combination of negative emotions and dissatisfaction at home, attempting to find balance in their powerful new role of wealth is a lonely journey for many.
Women with problems that arise from financial success don’t always find the empathy and support they may need. Take Melissa, a 43-year-old breadwinner, who is private by nature, especially when it comes to money. She is conflicted by the issues that financial success have brought upon her marriage and feels guilty about unpleasant feelings toward her husband. When entering her marriage, she assumed she would have a balanced partnership, but has lost respect for her husband and become resentful, questioning whether her career is preventing him from being ambitious.
Seeking support, she opened up to her 63-year-old friend and mentor about the pressure and strain that out earning her husband had put on her marriage – to a highly-charged, emotional response. Unable to recognize or understand Melissa’s pain, she was told to, “Just deal with it and stop whining.” After all—opportunity, equal pay and breaking the glass ceiling are what women fought for over many years.
The strong wave of contemporary feminism will continue to impact our culture and our workforce for years to come. Women have absorbed the changes of the last 50 years and have redefined what it means to be female in America. To be a girl today is to gain from decades of conversation about the complexities of womanhood, its forms and expressions.