Traditionally, men are seen as the absolute providers in the family while women are seen as the ones who stay at home to take care of the kids.
Over the years, this has dramatically changed and what we have now in modern relationships is a different situation to what previous generations had.
Back then, most men didn’t bother whether their wives made money or not. Some would even ask them to not work so as to dedicate all their time to the home and kids.
These days, guys want to be with women who, at least, should be willing to chip in with assistance in bills payment, and meeting of other financial necessities.
The turnaround began when women became more educated, and therefore got more jobs and more of them became entrepreneurs.
The number of stay-at-home mums reduced and naturally, women started becoming contributors to family finances, assisting their husbands when they could.
But men of that era did not really apply pressure on their women.
Most of these men were raised to solely provide for their families anyway, so a lot of women from that period still got away with the mantra: “his money is our money, but my money is my money.”
One other thing that could have brought about the change in how financial needs are met in modern relationships and marriages is feminism and the call for gender equality.
”The contemporary woman demands equality, asks for equal opportunities, equal treatment.
”Well, I think if she is allowed the benefits, she should not be allowed to deny the duties that come with it,” says Tayo, a bachelor in his 30’s.
“This feminism thing is both a blessing and a curse for women,” says Jonathan, a young Lagos entrepreneur.
“Women say what a man can do they can do, too.
“They want to work and earn money, and that’s fine. But they can’t be allowed to hold that money back from the family.
“If the man works and the woman works, it’s not right for the man to use all his money on the family while the woman does nothing,” he adds.
That seems to be something many guys agree on, including this writer.
Another reason for this change in the way finances are handled in marriages, and certainly the most valid, is simply the economic realities of present day Nigeria.
“The major thing that explains this change is the way things have become in the country,” a married colleague shares in anonymity.
“Rent is going up, school fees are going up, bills are rising but salaries are the same… you know these things, the economy is a mess, money is scarce.”
“Gone are the days when a random, common guy can allow his wife stay at home doing nothing.
“She needs to bring something to the table. It’s actually a must for women to be able to support financially,” he concludes emphatically.
And this new shift is not limited to marriages.
In relationships, guys are no longer looking for babes who have no jobs or earn no income. Legit income, that is.
As babes say they don’t want to date broke guys, guys are also saying they don’t want dependent, no-job, no-income girls.
The turnaround isn’t complete yet, but the modern relationship and marriage is certainly not in the same mold as the ones of old.
Money, bills, finances, holidays, gifts and basically how money is generally spent in a relationship is now more joint, and the idea of marriage as a partnership has never been more seriously taken.
Couples in serious relationships now make plans before marriage on how much each partner contributes of their monthly income, they discuss joint accounts, and how bills are settled; and really, this is the advisable model, except one partner is super rich and can afford to handle all of the bills and finances.
Even millennial guys who are just dating and 'chilling' are demanding babes to do better when it comes to spending money. There's no rule against offering to pay for food and dates once in a while.
“The present day Nigeria economy is one that requires more than one source of revenue.
“As a woman, I can’t imagine watching my husband handle all our financial responsibilities, and no lady should ever be a liability like that, in my opinion,” says Moyin, a beauty blogger and fashion enthusiast.
What’s left to mention here is that there are still some ladies that have not caught up with this moving train yet.
They still go around saying “I can’t date or marry a broke guy” even though they themselves are broke and worse, jobless with nothing to offer but sex, pretty faces and the promise of a magical vagina
Of course, there are still men that love trophy wives and stay-at-home mums but they are petering out as time goes on and becoming rarer with each Saturday that passes.
Babes like that need to wake up and smell the coffee. Far gone are the days when more men didn’t mind having women totally dependent on them.
Times have changed and the modern men, a group to which this writer belongs, no longer want to buy their women the finest things as anniversary and birthday gifts, only to get boxers, singlets and pairs of socks when their own birthdays come along.