Breadwinner Moms: Truth Behind the Trend

About a week ago, I sat on a panel of four women at the Heritage Foundation to discuss the rise of the female breadwinner. The point of the panel was to articulate the right-wing take on the Pew study showing that 40% of households have a female breadwinner. There were three conservatives and I was the libertarian. I’m grateful there weren’t four conservatives, but I’ll be a truly happy woman when I can be token libertarian girl on some left-wing panels too.

Here’s the lineup:


Mona Charen 
Syndicated Columnist and Bestselling Author

Featured Panelists

Kay Hymowitz 
Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and author of Manning Up: How the Rise of Women has Turned Men into Boys

Jennifer Marshall
Director of Domestic Policy Studies at the Heritage Foundation, an expert in the role that religion, family and community play in society and public policy

Sabrina Schaeffer 
Executive Director of Independent Women’s Forum and co-author of Liberty is No War on Women

Cathy Reisenwitz 
Libertarian blogger and digital publishing specialist at

Well, that’s not what I do. But I guess Heritage would lose like $80 zillion if they said the first word in my blog title, although can we all not agree that the last word a far, far dirtier one? It was a pretty impressive lineup, and I am flattered to have been invited.

Here’s a good rundown.

Here’s the video:

Watch live streaming video from heritagefoundation at

Here are some of my favorite tweets:

“Women are taking the lead in their own lives because they have to.” @CathyReisenwitz #breadwinnermoms

Us Ed system screws everyone but screws men most @CathyReisenwitz #breadwinnermoms


#BreadwinnerMoms trend is “less about the rise of women and more about the rise of low-educated men” @CathyReisenwitz

Here are the Tweets that Heritage said were the top Tweets.

Here are the top Tweets according to Twitter:


Of course I wish I’d practiced more, and there were a million points I should have made. But overall I’m happy I did it and would love to do more!

6 thoughts on “Breadwinner Moms: Truth Behind the Trend”

  1. I loved your non-reaction to the spider-killing comment. (Lol!)
    The whole talk was like a flash back to my conservative Pres. days… staring down the barrel of entering a conservative marriage. Dodged that bullet. Coincidentally, I attended the same church as Jennifer Marshall’s family.

    As a fellow anarchist, I’m with you on seeing the economic roots of familial problems today. I’d go even further, however: the structure and concept of ‘bread winning’ is itself the major problem. Putting ourselves at the mercy of wage labor and the disconnected nuclear family -what ‘bread winning’ implies -render all current family options sucky.

    Too idealistic for a panel? For now.

    1. If only I’d dodged it, haha. Exactly, marriage cannot be disconnected from economics. The sooner we stop seeing this imaginary line between economic and social issues the better off we’ll all be.

    2. >Putting ourselves at the mercy of wage labor and the disconnected nuclear family

      Your idea of having a bread winner is “I don’t do any useful work at all”? LAWL.

        1. And it’s just one type. Women are still of value to men (if not emotionally anymore, at least economically) and they have plenty of places to go; usually they don’t because they simply choose not to.

  2. How come no one ever discusses that the rise of the “bread winning mom” is more due to the rise of the “single” mother more than any meaningful gain in female earning potential? Single parent households with absent fathers will always be “bread winning mom” households even if the mother is making minimum wage.

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