I financially support my boyfriend and it has made our relationship stronger

People often assume that in a heterosexual relationship, the man should be the main breadwinner. But I financially support my partner, and I feel extremely judged as a result.

When we first met, the roles were reversed – he worked full-time in a management role and I was student.

Once I’d graduated and started my new job, it quickly became apparent that the industry I worked in would allow me to earn a comfortable income, one that involved working half the hours my partner worked and paid double what he made. So, a few years later, when my partner wanted to study for a degree, we decided that he should quit his job and become a ‘house husband’.

No one said a word when he earned more than me, but turn the tables and suddenly everyone has something to say.

Some of our family and friends have expressed concerns about our financial security and the amount of pressure I may be under – comments that I don’t think many bread-winning men are on the receiving end of.

I’ve been told that it’s lazy for a man to stay at home and that men are meant to earn the larger income.

While it’s frustrating that people still think like this, it’s the critical comments from my female friends that confuse me the most – especially since they are all financially supported by their male partners.

I’ve had other women say that they wouldn’t like to be in a relationship with a man who stays at home all day or that they wouldn’t like to be under the pressure that I’m under. I usually respond by explaining why our situation works well for us and that if it didn’t, we wouldn’t be doing it.

The outdated concept that women can’t be the person looking after their partner financially dates back generations, and yet it is one that many people still value.

If a man can earn more and it makes financial sense that he goes to work, why isn’t the opposite acceptable?

We have been together for seven years. We share a home, a dog, and unsurprisingly, a bank account. I have never had a problem with our financial set-up, neither has my boyfriend, so I don’t understand why others feel the need to judge us.

I earn enough to cover the bills and live comfortably, so why shouldn’t I?

Another issue that people raise is what will happen when we have kids.

There’s a slump of stay-at-home dads, with the UK at its lowest rate in five years for stay-at-home dads. This is no doubt due to the fact that men tend to be the main breadwinners in most relationships, and that a quarter of companies have a pay gap of more than 20 per cent between men’s salaries and their female counterparts.

While my partner and I don’t currently have plans for children, he will be the primary carer, if we do.

If a man can earn more and it makes financial sense that he goes to work, why isn’t the opposite acceptable?

For the most part, the change in our financial step-up has been for the better.

I will admit that there are days when I feel frustrated or resentful of how hard I work, as well as worry about whether me supporting both of us was the right move to make. I have doubts, but I don’t regret our lifestyle.

If anything, it has improved the dynamic of our relationship, because it offers us a more flexible way of life.

As a couple, we are now able to spend more time together without the constraints of fitting quality time in-between work shifts, which has been fantastic.

I’ve previously asked my partner if he feels emasculated about my supporting him or whether he’s worried about what others might think, but he isn’t bothered in the slightest. He’s happy with our current situation – it works for us and that is what matters.

In order for the kind of financial set-up that my partner and I have to become the norm, the stigma around women being the breadwinner needs to end.

Why should a man feel that staying home, whether that be to raise children or deal with the housework, isn’t a worthwhile use of his time?

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