If the wife is the breadwinner in a marriage, it could put a strain on the relationship. In some cases, a relationship may be doomed before a couple is even able to get married if a woman makes more than her significant other. This is in spite of the fact that 38% of wives make more than their husbands according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
A Harvard study found that couples are 33% more likely to divorce when the women is the primary earner in the relationship. This is partially because attitudes toward a man's role in a marriage have not changed while a woman's role has evolved in recent decades. A Pew study discovered that 40% of respondents felt that it was important for fathers to make money. Furthermore, 75% felt that women in the workplace made it harder for families to raise children.
Men themselves may feel as if they are being emasculated if they don't provide for their families. In some relationships, they may feel as if they aren't on equal footing if they don't make as much or more than their partners do. Research has suggested that couples who make roughly the same amount of money are more likely to have long-term success together.
The amount of money a person makes during a marriage could play a role in creating terms for the divorce settlement. Generally, the person who made more money while a couple was together might pay alimony to the person who earned less money. However, an exception might be made if a couple had a prenuptial agreement forbidding either spouse from receiving financial assistance from the other. An attorney may review a prenuptial agreement to determine the document's validity.