Um...I couldn't resist the bait...I don't want to devolve into gender comparism here but...I feel like, either you really don't understand the social pressure I'm talking about ...or you are deliberately ignoring it because it does not fit into your world view of how things should work.
Ok...let me see how I can put it. In many societies, despite the strides made in gender equity, there is still the strong stereotype that the man should make more than the woman IE provide; and that if the woman makes significantly much more than her man...she will lose respect for him, start cheating on him, boss him around etc etc....I'm not saying that it happens like this 100% of the time...but I'm just saying that plenty people still believe this...
And that's part of the problem, even though the husband and wife are ok with their situation of the woman being breadwinner...onlookers... constantly make snide remarks about it...and it takes *****load of personal strength to not let it make you feel insecure.
Heck..even moving into my gf's apartment was a big problem. So many commenters "why are you moving into her place?" "you are putting yourself in her domain" "You are giving her control" "you should get your own place, and tell her to move in with you.
...at the time it was just the best decision for us as couple finance-wise.
If the sexes were reversed and it was a woman moving into her boyfriend's apartment, nobody would question it.
So yes...I hope this answers your question. The social pressure is different.
Yes, I agree, that's how the stereotypes work. I'm sure that those differences in social pressure exist for most people. But bear with me.
The fact is, husbands who make more than their wives often treat their wives in exactly the same way that higher-earning wives treat their lower-earning husbands. And they do it (at least to a large degree) because they make more money and feel entitled to treat them that way. This is such an obvious stereotype -- the successful man treating his wife like a shiny toy -- that it should be familiar to everyone, and it's part of what feminists are talking about when they talk about sexism.
is warning you about is not to end up in the kind of relationship that women find themselves in all the time. Avoiding a relationship like that isn't bad -- he's giving sound advice; what makes it hypocritical is the idea that this is a danger peculiar to men and that only men should worry about it. Some
men might find themselves in this kind of relationship, but the majority
of women are probably already in that kind of relationship. But the stereotypes make that fact invisible to most men, which is why they can unironically warn other men to avoid ending up in the kind of relationship that women routinely find themselves in.
Now, because it is
a norm, women aren't looked down on, in general, for finding themselves in this kind of relationship. You're right, if a woman moves into her bf's apartment, very few people will remark on it. And if her husband treats her "like a pet and sometimes puts her down", well, that's just men (male chauvinism). That doesn't reduce the harm the husband's behavior has on his wife, but it does largely eliminate the harm that men in the same situation experience from people outside
the relationship. (Which is what you're talking about.)
Additionally, a woman who makes more than her husband can
use the stereotype against him -- (a) she can not only feel superior and treat her husband with contempt because she makes more money (just like a higher-earning husband may treat his wife); (b) she can also invoke cultural stereotypes to emasculate him. Which is what men are really worried about. But these are two separate kinds of harm. And they both only exist to the extent that people reinforce the stereotypes; ie. to the extent that people believe that making more than their spouse entitles them to feel superior, and that a man is not a "real" man if he makes less than his wife. Which, ofc, are both completely untrue.
Now, before you run off with "Aha! See, it's worse for men, because men are emasculated by their wives and by people outside the relationship!" you have to understand that, culturally, all women have already been "emasculated"
. Whether or not a man is treated like a man does depend, unfortunately, to a large degree, on how successful he is; men who are failures stop being "real men". But if people do not hold women to the same standard, it's because many people consider women inherently inferior to men
. And husbands can use this
stereotype against their wives -- (a) he can not only feel superior and treat his wife with contempt because he makes more money; (b) he can also invoke cultural stereotypes to remind her that -- because she is female -- she is inferior and will never be as good as him. How do you think that feels? Well, I imagine it's pretty emasculating
. Only, in this case, there's nothing the woman can do to change it. At least her husband can possibly find a better job.
I'm not saying it won't be difficult for you to bear up under that kind of pressure, because it's real. All I'm doing is pointing out that if you were the wife instead of the husband, things wouldn't be better for you, they'd just be different. Instead of fearing emasculation by your wife and people outside the relationship, you'd have to deal with feeling like a second class person in a more general sense, in most situations. (If you find yourself sympathetic to the plight of men in general, I guarantee you you'd be a feminist right now if you'd been born a woman.)
Imo, it's more "manly" to bear up under those pressures than to cave to other people's opinions. Being overly worried about what other people think of you isn't exactly manly. It takes guts and determination to live the life you want to live when everyone is telling you to live the way they want you to live. Whether it's more important to you to pursue your own happiness or avoid trouble is something only you can decide, but fwiw, I've tried to avoid trouble most of my life and now I regret every minute of it. I just don't want you to feel like you've wasted your life the way I have.