Dating Over 40: Should Income Imbalance Be a Deal Breaker?

Dr. Janice Bennett, who calls herself  Doctor Love Coach, has written an article about successful women, money issues and opening up to other kinds of giving/sharing.  It’s a very good look at the dramatic changes in US society from a sociological/dating/relationship standpoint. 

As women have taken on more traditionally male high-powered jobs, that has created a strong ripple affect on their love lives. In times past, women often married up, using their good looks and sex to get a man with good income potential – a good provider.  But, if woman are going to occupy many of those "good provider" jobs, perhaps they can loosen up the need for a good provider and think of other important qualities that a life partner can offer.

For example, this study  makes my point "conducted by Michael R. Cunningham, a psychologist who teaches in the communication department at the University of Louisville. He asked college women if, upon graduation, they would prefer to settle down with a high school teacher who has short workdays, summers off and spare energy to help raise children, or with a surgeon who earns eight times as much but works brutal hours. Three-quarters of the women said they would choose the teacher."

Here are some amazing facts taken from a 9/23/07 New York Times article entitled Putting Money on the Table by Alex Williams. "For the first time, women in their 20s who work full time in several American cities — New York, Chicago, Boston and Minneapolis — are earning higher wages than men in the same age range, according to a recent analysis of 2005 census data by Andrew Beveridge, a sociology professor at Queens College in New York. .. the gap is largely driven by a gulf in education: 53 percent of women employed full time in their 20s were college graduates, compared with 38 percent of men. Women are also more likely to have graduate degrees."

Ouch – that gap is definitely going to require rethinking male marriage partner potential isn’t it?

I have several college friends who were earning over $200,000 in high powered jobs who married men that were not their professional equals. One friend married the manager of an Inn where she stayed on vacation in the South of France and another married a man who was the personal assistant of a very wealthy business man. They are happy couples with children –  it’s working out very well for them.

Personally I married a man who didn’t graduate from college. Even though I have an MBA, I figured his education didn’t have to be a factor in my MRS. He’s kind, adorable, generous, emotionally available, and supportive.  He can pretty much fix anything, leaves his job at work and comes home to make me tea.  I don’t think I’m lacking for much as a result of his not being my education or career equal.

You can say I settled if you want.  And I’ll even agree – I settled for a heart of gold and a happy relationship with a really good man.

If you are a highly successful woman reading this post, and you’d like to find love, maybe it’s time think about other qualities that would work for you in a romantic partner.  Look past the paycheck to find your very own prince charming.


Single for too long, Ronnie wanted to find love. So, she made a few tweaks and then dated 30 men in 15 months to meet her adorable husband Paul. Discovering the keys to midlife dating, she founded It’s Never Too Late for Love to help other smart, successful women find love too! Her mission is to share her proven dating advice  and keen insights about men with women everywhere who are serious about finding love with the right man. Ronnie Ann Ryan, MBA, CCC is a Certified Coach who has helped 1,000’s of midlife women with her Love & Dating Coach services. She’s been featured on BBC’s 5 Live Radio, NBC, ABC, and Fox News, NPR, eHarmony,,, Connecticut Magazine among others around the world. An established author, you can find her 6 books on Amazon.

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