According to a new study by the Pew Research Center, married men are leading richer lives. Literally. Here's the breakdown: the median household income for married men has gone up by 60 percent since 1970, while the income for single men has only shot up by 16 percent. The trade-off for succumbing to a life limited to one sexual partner for the rest of one's life? Maybe. Though Pew has several other, more logical explanations.
Among them is the fact that more men these days are marrying women who are bringing in even more money than they are, making their combined income pretty darn awesome. In 1970, fewer women worked outside of the home, and those who did certainly weren't pulling in income like we do today. Yes, men. You're welcome. New Marriage Trend: Men Marrying Wealthy Women
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But we tend to think that there's more to this trend than what's revealed by the numbers.* For example:
Perhaps men are increasing their incomes upon getting married out of a desperation that comes from realizing that they've just pledged their life to a woman who buys a new pair of shoes every week, despite the fact that she can barely afford one new pair of shoes a year.
Or perhaps they're pushing for promotions and raises post-nuptials because they suddenly have to pay for a larger house, eventual kids and their wife's costly wine-tasting habit.
Finally, they could be working odd jobs—on top of their full-time work—in order to have an excuse to get out of the darn house during Project Runway and Millionaire Matchmaker marathons, a practice that could also eventually lead to having to pay for marriage counseling.
All jokes aside, the Pew suggests a less sunny correlation: a greater percentage of low-income earners are choosing not to get married. The pros, cons and neutrals of this remain to play out and—we hope—be revealed in a future Pew study to come.
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Readers, do you think married men have it easier today than they did in 1970? Let's discuss in the comments below.
*And by "we," we mean that one crazy staffer with the shopping problem. We pity her poor, poor husband.