Marital unhappiness frequently drives wives into the workplace, said Dr. Robert Schoen, a sociology professor. Whether it be unhappy wives, husbands or both, unhappiness can play an important role in wives taking on full-time employment.
This story is interesting. It seems that when a man or woman gets unhappy in a marriage, it greatly increases the chances that the woman will enter the workforce. If a couple is happy, odds that the wife will go to work are lower.
“We see no consequences of wives’ full-time employment for marital happiness, but wives’ full-time employment decreases the risk of subsequent marital disruption,” Schoen explained.
I suspect that in these unhappy couples, the working husband does not respect his wife’s role as homemaker. When she goes to work, her self-esteem probably improves because she has been conditioned to think of her self-worth in purely economic and career terms. The husband’s opinion of her probably increses as well.
It’s also possible that a second income resolves most financial issues, which is a big source of conflict in marriages.
Another possibility that comes to mind is that co-workers provide emotional support and needed relationships that a homemaker is not getting from her family.
Maybe it’s none of those. Maybe a combination of some. I dunno.
Another interesting quote:
The researchers also found that having a child reduced the likelihood of wives’ employment by 55 percent. Women with one child were also less likely to work full-time than wives with two or more children and wives with no children.
I guess moms want to stay home with the first baby, but by the time number 2 comes along they want to get away! :-)