Suppose a very well to do doctor was married to a very bright man who happened to be a house husband. They had no children but he worked very hard maintaining their household. One day however the wife loses her job unexpectedly and asks her husband to help pitch in and get a job. He says, "well I don't want to do that." and in reply she says, "well then maybe we should get a divorce. And he says "Well, yes you can divorce me but I am entitled to half of your earnings for during the time we were married." I don't know this for sure but my gut tells me that most women would find something very wrong with that situation. It would seem wrong because it would seem like the man is responsible for his own livelihood after the relationship terminates. In most situations however the man is the bread winner and the women is the housewife and I think most people don't have a problem with a man paying half his earned income to his divorced wife. Am I wrong in my assumption that women (and men) would balk at the idea of a woman paying a house husband a hefty divorce settlement? Am I wrong in my assumption that most people wouldn't balk if the genders were reversed? Do divorce laws imply that there are fundamental perhaps ontological differences between men and women? Are there fundamental differences in the social situation of women that would justify the difference in how I imagine most people perceive the appropriateness of paying a house husband versus a housewife? What is feminism's stance on this question? Is there something fundamental and obvious here that I missing out on?

Certainly nowadays the law would require the woman to pay alimony in this situation, and I am sure there have been many such cases.

I find it hard to see how anyone who wasn't just flatly sexist might think it should be otherwise. Perhaps vestiges of sexist thinking with which we have all been saddled by our society would make our gut reaction a little different, but fortunately we have brains and do not have to be ruled by our guts.

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