For the majority of our relationship, my Latino husband has been the breadwinner in our household. In fact, for several years while I was a stay-at-home mom after each of our children's births, he was the only one bringing a salary into our home. About four months ago, however, that changed and I'm currently the breadwinner.

Apparently, I'm not alone. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2009--the most recent year for which figures are available--nearly 4 in 10 working wives out-earned their husbands. This is an increase of more than 50 percent from 20 years before, as reported on the cover story of the March 26 issue of TIME magazine.

Although in many instances this is happening because of layoffs caused by the recession, in our case, it was more of a conscious decision made in purpose. Allow me to explain.

Before he quit his job as chief photographer for one of the local news stations late last year, my husband had been toiling away for almost four years at a place he not only despised, but one that showed no respect for his 20-plus years of experience. He'd done it mainly because when we made the decision to have children, we always agreed that it'd be best if I stayed home with them as long as possible. I know he made a tremendous sacrifice to make that a reality and, for that, I'll be forever grateful. 

So, as things became even more unbearable at his job and months after I went back to work for our local newspaper bringing in decent salary, we realized the time had come for him to quit. He ended up getting a part-time job at the competition, which means he still brings money into the house, but he gets to spend tons of time with our children--particularly our 2 1/2 year old son--which I know he considers priceless, since he's never been able to do that. Not to mention that he had gone back to school and is looking forward to more career opportunities once he graduates. 

Although, like most Latino men, he was raised to believe that he should be the sole provider and protector of his family, I'm glad to report that, after an adjustment period of sorts, my husband has had no issues realizing that how much money he makes (or doesn't make) doesn't make him more or less valuable in our household. In the end, it's not about the money, but about what works best for each family's dynamic. 

How about you? How would your Latino man feel if you made more money than him?

Image via Victor1558/flickr

About the author

Roxana A. Soto is Features Editor of MamásLatinas. She's a bilingual and bicultural journalist born in Peru and raised in Mexico, Argentina, South Africa and Miami. She's also mom to a girl in 3rd grade and a boy in Kinder. She loves books, languages, traveling and good food – especially when cooked by someone else.

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Filed Under: finances
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