The Myth of Needing Two Incomes

The Myth of Needing Two Incomes

Happy Mama commented on one of my recent posts.  I thought it was so beautifully written that I would make it into a post.  I will let her words minister to you ~

Just commenting on some of the comments…It is sad to me that some people think that having two incomes is a necessity. You may need two incomes to keep up your current lifestyle, but you don’t need two incomes. You just have to learn to live within your means, which may mean getting rid of a second car, living in an apartment not a house, learning to cook simple meals, buying second hand-only things that are really needed.

My husband is disabled and we live on his disability income. It is extremely financially tight, but I would never leave my role as a homemaker for more money. I have found ways to help us earn a few extra dollars (selling things online) that has blessed my family without leaving my role as homemaker. (The Proverbs 31 woman made money through her extra work at her home.) I completely accept we will always live in an apartment; we will always live humbly. But nothing is more important than caring for my home and family.

A simple humble life with my loved ones is better than any big paycheck. People are what make life great, not things. As long as your husband has an income, however small, you can live off it. Nothing is more precious to me than raising my children and caring for my family.

After reading Money Saving Secrets of the Amish I was really inspired by even the things I think of as necessities. The Amish were asked if they could spend extra money on some luxuries what they would buy. One of the Amish mentioned a salad dressing they really liked, but was only a special treat. One of the ladies mentioned Ritz crackers. Even many food items aren’t necessities (I have always thought all food counts as necessities), but really if you look at how people who live the most humble eat ~ much of even the food bought and sold in America are luxuries. I was greatly encouraged to think more simply after reading this wonderful book, and it really made me think about what are true needs vs. wants, even with regards to food. Just wanted to share that too.

We need to get back to being unmaterialistic and living simply so we have time to enjoy the things in life that really make us rich!

She rises also while it is yet night, and gives food to her household.
Proverbs 31:15

20 thoughts on “The Myth of Needing Two Incomes

  1. I’m a stay at home mother. This is necessary for us because we don’t have any family around and we don’t want to put our child in daycare for 10+ hours per day (a couple of hours of preschool are fine with us, but not longer). Guess who is nagging me about it? Who is criticizing the most? My own mother! Because I will not have any retirement income, while she has a generous final salary pension scheme! So she’s looking forward for me to get back to work.

  2. She has fallen for the anti-God agenda. It sure isn’t the Lord who wants mothers to leave their homes and children all day to make money. It’s the enemy of our soul and good for you, Mrs. G., for not falling for his lies and deceptions! Your family is blessed.

  3. My husband and I have always lived solely off of his income. I remember during times of financial crisis, I thought I should help bring in more income. My husband said, “No.” He would figure it out and pick up little side jobs to make ends meet. The Lord has continually honored His Word and kept His promise to supply all our needs! Praise Him, Praise Him! Thanks, Lori, for another great post. Blessings to you on Mother’s Day!

  4. We are are family of 6. My husband’s salary is $2,900 a month. How can we live off this income in Los Angeles, CA? I have looked around and we can find a one bedroom apartment to rent for $1,500 a month. A two bedroom will cost us $2,000 a month. I refuse to live on government assistance. The only problem is that we need to find someone to rent a one bedroom to a 6 member family. I have been full of anxiety over this. I have not moved to CA yet. I am currently living in another state. We live on 14 acres in a 3400 square foot house. Our mortgage is $600 a month. I have stayed home with our children for the past 9 years. It has been so wonderful to stay home.
    The other thing I have a problem with is that I feel that my husband has not really thought this whole thing out. I am fine to stay in another state free from the stress of big city life.

  5. We have always been a family that watches what we spend. We have two cars that are both 14 years old. My children are very humble children. They do not have cell phones, like every child their age. We just can not afford it. I try to only spend $600 a month on groceries. We have never even had cable TV. We cut corners as much as we can. We only have one credit card bill, that we plan to pay off by the end of the year.

  6. I have to work, part-time, to help support our family. Unfortunately, sometimes, there is just no choice. It’s not a matter of adjusting our lifestyle to suit our income – we’ve already done that as much as it is possible to do.

    We live rent-free in a small home, we grow as much of our own food as we can, bottling free surplus fruit over summer. We chop up free firewood to heat our home. We don’t use a clothes dryer – I hang all my washing to dry it. I make our food from scratch and even make my own cleaning products! There isn’t anything else we can do, to live any more frugally.

    My husband had an accident and has a very serious back injury. It is inoperable. He is no longer able to do what he used to do – he was a dairy farmer. He is now self-employed in a small retail business, but the nature of retail means the money comes in cycles, and with a big family, we need regular money, so I work 18 hours a week while the kids are at school.

    My husband wants, and needs, me to work. If he wanted me to stop, I would, but he doesn’t. He wants me to work. As he tells me often – sometimes, if I wasn’t working, we wouldn’t eat. And that is what it comes down to – some women HAVE to work, in order to eat.

  7. I really can’t agree with you more, Lori! Yet another wise post. While I was raised in a conservative family, I went to college and was a nurse for three years before getting married and realizing that it was important to my marriage and God’s plan that I quit and stay home. A year later, we were blessed with our first child and I haven’t looked back! Sometimes when I travel to The Cities (I live in MN), I’m shocked at the number of women working, especially those that wear wedding rings. What are your thoughts on explaining to these women that living as a homemaker is more valuable than a paycheck? I don’t like to cause trouble, but I feel like maybe if I just talk to these women and recommend them to your blog, they will see that they are much happier when they live their life how God intended them to. Many blessings!

  8. To be fair, she didn’t send me to daycare. She had a job which provided a generous maternity leave, no commute and the opportunity to fit working hours around school time. So with the help of grandma and a part time nanny, I didn’t go to daycare at all.

    She would not like my child to go to daycare, but ideally she would like that we live nearby so she can take care of her precious grandchild while I work or as second best solution she would be happy to contribute towards the salary of a nanny.

    However I’m happy to stay at home with my child, as I have fertility issues and it’s not sure that I might be able to have another one. And it’s not just an issue of infancy, there are so many reasons to stay at home (or work only very short hours) until the children are older. How can we get to know them if we don’t spend time with them? Quality time is just a myth, in some families it’s 15 minutes a day, which is really not enough.

  9. Thank you, Holly, and the same to you! You are blessed to have a husband that works so hard to provide for his family as the Lord has required him to do.

  10. Keep praying about it and giving it to the Lord, Tina. He knows your heart desire and He wants you to be a keeper at home. Trust Him to find a way as you rest in Him!

  11. Keep trusting him with your future then, Tina. You are doing your part so trust Him with His part!

    25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

    26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

    27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

    28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

    29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

    30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

    31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

    32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

    33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

    34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
    from Matthew 6

  12. This is where the church should come in and help provide for families in your position! Have you asked the Lord for wisdom in making money from home as the Proverbs 31 woman did? There are many ways to do this today and with the Lord all things are possible.

  13. Plant seeds wherever you can, Russanne! I believe there are quite a few women who would love to come home but they have bought the lie of the enemy that they should work outside of their home. It’s wonderful that you came home even before you had children. I love hearing that there are men out there who still support this!

  14. Praying for your husband’s mind to be changed, KAK. There’s not much you can do but submit to him and by extension the Lord, but I’ll pray for your situation to change.

  15. Thank you, Lori. Getting a response from you is how some women would feel getting a response from their favorite celebrity!!

  16. Hi Lori,
    Our church does help those in need, but we’re not really *in need* as such, because my income combined with his income keeps us afloat. If I was to lose my job, or we were in dire financial straits, they would definitely step in and help. But to be honest, most of the women in our church also work, part-time, because where I live, it’s necessary for most. Housing is unaffordable here, and we have a huge rate of homeless people. Groceries are ridiculously expensive, too. You can buy NZ lamb cheaper over there in America than what we can buy it for here, and it’s been shipped halfway around the world to get to you!

  17. Taylor – I appreciate your thoughts/prayers, but I honestly don’t mind working. I was simply trying to share the other side of the coin – that some women don’t go to work for “luxuries” but for “survival”. It would be nice if we could all survive on one income but the reality is, many of us can’t. Here in New Zealand, we have two-income families that are struggling to make ends meet because housing is so unaffordable and the cost of living is so high. We are lucky enough to own our home mortgage-free, but many in the big cities here are paying upwards of $550 a WEEK for rent! And that is just impossible on one income, sadly.

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