In her latest of recurring series, The Lady in the Black takes a playful “he said, she said” perspective on serious money issues. One Lady, one Gent; tackling financial matters for the sexes together.
Welcome to the inaugural issue of Ladies and Gents.
To kick off this series, I invited one of my favorite personal finance bloggers to chat with me. Give it up for Matt, from We’re All Poor Here. (Insert cheers and applause)
He and I joke that we are Twitter girlfriend/boyfriend but it’s all in good fun. In fact, it’s our mutual respect for our individual financial journeys that keeps us together (as a virtual couple.) He’s a young cute freelance writer improving his financial health and building a future for himself. I’m an older far cuter freelance writer improving her financial health and living a profitable life.
He likes beer. I prefer wine.
We have never met but, if we did, I betcha we’d get along famously.
Financial Matters For The Sexes
Lady: What do you think is the biggest difference between how men and women view personal finances?
Gent: I don’t think it’s a men vs. women thing. I think too many people choose a partner that doesn’t have the same financial mindset. It has nothing to do with genitals. Although bumping uglies is usually how they get into whatever financial position (pun intended) they’re in now.
Lady: Hey now, I didn’t think to bring our “uglies” into the conversation but I’d have to respectfully disagree with you.
Gent: So, you think there is a difference in the way that men and women look at personal finances?
Lady: Yes. I do. Of course, I have no proof but I think it stems from the hundreds of generations in a largely patriarchal society. Men are used to having money, property, and managing all as they choose. I feel that women (at least US women) are less than 2 generations removed from earning and managing their own money. My mother never worked. My grandmother only worked after her husband had passed. I think women are at a disadvantage. We are uneducated about personal finances or general finances for that matter. I also believe that, as a stereotype, men hold a much more dispassionate, clinical view of money. It is something to accumulate, to hold like a possession. Women, at least speaking for myself, see it leverage or security.
Gent: See. This is where I’m unable to really comment. I’ve never had money or property or cared about possessions, so I can neither speak for men nor truly understand the female perspective.
Lady: Ya, I hear that’s a thing. Ladies be crazy.
Lady: Do you think there will ever be gender-neutral salary parity?
Gent: I do not. I think the average male who finds himself in a position of professional authority is typically a misogynistic asshole. Until women rise up and start taking these roles away from the average douchebag, I don’t think there will ever be equality as far as salary is concerned.
Lady: Damn. I knew there was a reason I like you.
Gent: Why do women care about making as much as men anyway? Why not concern yourself with making more? Why be satisfied with equality? I’m not saying there isn’t a concern and I’m not saying it isn’t bullshit. I’m saying financially driven women shouldn’t give a fuck what men are making. They should care how much they’re making and what they’re doing to put that income to work.
Lady: In principle, I’d agree with you. But it’s hard to deny the gender gap is an ongoing problem. I’d like to see all companies make salaries completely transparent. That would be a real game changer. It would be far less about man vs women and more about professional experience and level of contribution.
Gent: The salary gap is undeniable. I just think that shooting for equality is an entire gender of people selling themselves short. Why not take it all for yourselves? Although I’m not a “professional”, from what I can tell on social media, the female executives seem way hungrier than their male counterparts. Men are lazy when we can get away with it. And often times when we can’t. We just don’t care.
Lady: It’s 2017. Do you think it’s time to ditch the whole “the man pays” for the first date tradition?
Gent: No, I do not. I’m a Southern gentleman. I was raised to treat a woman like a lady when we go out. So that’s what I do and it’s what I’m going to continue to do. However, I will say this. I’m single with no intention of changing. If I were to date, it would have to be to a woman who had similar financial values, as personal finance, minimalism, and frugality are large parts of my life. Chances of finding someone who is exactly what I want are pretty slim.
Lady: I wouldn’t sell yourself short there, mister. There are plenty of fish in the sea. And I’m still a fan of the “guy pays for the first date” thing, too. Chivalry is not dead–at least not with this Lady. I’ll gladly split the tab or even pick up the tab on subsequent dates. In fact, I tend to date men who make significantly less than I do. I’m often picking up the bill at the end of the night. I don’t mind. But first date, the gentlemen should pay. Call me old fashioned.
Gent: Why do people date when they aren’t financially compatible?
Lady: I’m not sure about “people” but, for me, financially compatibility doesn’t really top the list. Sure, it factors into a relationship but I’m far more concerned with shared interests, intellect, honesty, ambition–and, you know, romantic compatibility.
Gent: Shouldn’t financial compatibility be a priority? Especially for folks like us who are on the grind and talking about it on the internet?
Lady: When you are right, you are right–especially since money causes so many problems within a relationship. Maybe I’ll bump it up on my priority list. Any fiscally responsible single guys out there?
Lady: Is there anything else you want to say?
Gent: I have a lot of respect for all of the ladies who are doing big things and even more for the ones who are trying like hell to do big things. Follow The Lady in the Black.
Lady: Awww. Thanks. It’s genuine, hard-working gentlemen like you that give this Lady hope for her happily ever after. Thanks for being such a great sport–and a super supportive virtual boyfriend. Follow We’re All Poor Here now because he won’t be poor for long.