| (Source: Shanghaidaily.com.cn)
BEIJING, July 23 (Xinhuanet) -- Confident, high-earning Chinese women are shaking up traditional gender roles in marriage, sometimes leading to divorce in a society where men financially supported by women are usually despised. Nie Xin reports.
Mu Liming, an ambitious 32-year-old communications manager for an international company, recently divorced her husband of five years because her income far outstripped his and they no longer had much in common.
"Family life is getting too boring!" Mu tells Shanghai Daily in an interview. "We have less and less in common to talk about. He is always complaining that I don't have time to take care of the family, cook for him and keep him company."
Discussing reasons for the divorce, Mu says it's mainly because of the conjugal income gap - She earns around 30,000 yuan a month (US$4,706), far more than her husband Li Hua who is an IT worker in a small local company. Mu has steadily advanced and job-hopped, while her husband has remained in basically the same position.
"I tried to encourage him to be more ambitious, but I feel so disappointed that there was almost no change in so many years," Mu says.
The couple have a three-year-old daughter and they haven't decided who will take the custody.
Mu and quite a few women like her are earning more than their husbands and boyfriends in an unsettling of tradition and gender roles. This can cause conflict, estrangement, divorce, and end an engagement - or in some cases, a new balance in which both parties make it work.
As always, there's an old Chinese saying that applies: nan zhu wai, nu zhu nei, which means the man or husband is responsible for earning money to support the family, while woman or wife is responsible for doing housework. In Confucian tradition, a woman doesn't need to earn money but she must take care of the home and children.