Tyler Perry Has Controversial Take on Splitting Bills in Relationships
Tyler Perry has sparked controversy after a new interview, in which he gave advice about splitting the bills in relationships.
Appearing on the Keep It Positive, Sweetie podcast, Perry shared his feelings about dividing household expenses and revealed that they don’t have to be split down the middle.
“I might get in trouble for saying this, but I will. In our society right now, Black women are making a lot more money, for the most part, than Black men,” the prolific entertainer began. “If you can find love, if that man works at whatever job and is a good man, and is good to you, and honors you, and honors the house, and honors his wife, and does what he can, that is okay.”
He continued: “As long as he’s secure in himself to know that, ‘yeah, she makes most of the money, all I can pay is the light bill.’ As long as she’s comfortable enough to say, ‘I’m gonna cover the mortgage and all the other stuff,’ that is fine.”
It’s unclear what Perry was referring to when he announced Black women make more than Black men, as facts don’t support that claim. While Black women earn far more bachelors degrees than Black men, a July report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on the weekly earnings of wage and salary workers found that Black women earned only 89.9 percent as much as Black men. Black women represent the lowest wage gap between their male counterparts out of white, Hispanic, and Asian women; however, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research says this is “due to the comparatively low earnings of Black and Hispanic men, which are considerably less than the earnings of men overall.”
Some have jumped on Perry’s loose facts, taking issue with his laying the problem at women’s feet. “Instead of telling women to settle, encourage men to do better,” user @pricesateeks wrote on Instagram. Others found the remarks to be troubling in light of Perry’s work, which often depicts successful women suffering as a result of their independence. “This is why I really don’t fuck with Tyler Perry,” X user Babby Breinna said. “All he does is make movies and TV Shows about Black Trauma, especially Black women’s trauma.”
The subject of dating below your income level is a controversial one. Studies have shown many women are hesitant to date men who earn less than them or to be their household’s primary breadwinner. A 2016 poll of 3,000 single people across the country found that 22 percent of women wouldn’t consider dating a person who makes less money than them. That was compared with just 4 percent of men, and 11 percent of singles overall. 69 percent of women likewise said they were uncomfortable being the primary source of income and paying all of the bills, compared to 46 percent of men.
Meanwhile, men more often exhibit stress when their female partners earn significantly more than them. A 2019 study found that men grew increasingly uncomfortable when women began to contribute more than 40 percent of household income. It’s perhaps these men that Perry was aiming his comments towards.