Dating outside your economic class

Yet, by analyzing how individuals talked about themselves, their partners, and their marriages, I discovered that this was far from the truth. It’s also about how the amount of money and material things we used to have shape the type of people we become.Class had shaped each spouse so much that the people I interviewed had more in common with strangers who shared their class background than with their husbands and wives. People who grew up in households without much money, predictability, or power, learn strategies to deal with the unexpected events that crop up in their lives.Few people I spoke to reported having parents who plotted against their children’s relationships, or felt they were subject to social stigma for their cross-class relationship.

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Similar barriers are likely in place for women of all races.

For women from working-class backgrounds, middle-class spouses’ models for navigating professional environments may not trump the “mommy tax,” glass ceilings, or the other social processes that can limit women’s mobility in male-dominated fields like law, business, and medicine.

Often, these strategies are variations of going with the flow and taking things as they come. Isabelle, for example, is the daughter of a farmer and a bartender.

(All the survey participants have been given pseudonyms.) Her family did not know how much money each year’s crops or tips would bring in.

With some additional analysis, then, Streib’s work can provide a useful framework for understanding why professional jobs are mainly the province of those who are white, male, and not raised working-class.

It can also offer insights into the barriers that exist for workers who don’t fit into these categories.

In her 2015 book , the sociologist Jessi Streib shows that marriages between someone with a middle-class background and someone with a working-class background can involve differing views on all sorts of important things—child-rearing, money management, career advancement, how to spend leisure time.

In fact, couples often overlook class-based differences in beliefs, attitudes, and practices until they begin to cause conflict and tension.

But her conclusions are undeniably important and have implications for how inequalities may be maintained in the workplace.

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