In marriages where the husband and wife assume traditional gender roles, the risk of divorce can rise significantly when those roles change. A common example of this in Kentucky and around the country is when the woman earns less than her husband at the start of a marriage but experiences a sudden surge in income as her career improves. This often means the wife has less time to take care of household chores and care for the children, shifting the burden of these activities onto the man.
Husbands can be threatened by their wives earning more money because they see themselves as the traditional breadwinners in a relationship. Unfortunately, some men try to compensate by being more controlling over all aspects of the relationship. Other men responded by working less because they felt the extra income wasn't needed. According to one attorney that represented wives in divorce, however, the husbands rarely responded by taking on more chores.
The best way to prevent problems from arising due to shifting gender roles in a marriage is to establish a relationship of equal footing right from the beginning. That means each partner has an equal say in decision-making no matter how much earning power they have relative to each other. Most marriages require a healthy power dynamic to be successful in the long term.
Estranged couples who are going through the divorce process due to shifting gender roles may be feeling a lot of difficult emotions. In cases that are contentious, attorneys will use all the resources at their disposal to protect the interests of their clients.