How would you respond to the following ultimatum: You're hanging out with a group of casual girl friends, and you're required to either a) reveal every salacious detail of your most embarrassing hook-up story or b) tell them how much you make. If you chose the former, you're apparently in the company of many millennial women who still get tripped up talking about money. According to a recent study conducted by Visa and Lieberman Research Worldwide (LRW), millennial ladies are nearly three times more likely to talk to their friends about their sex lives than their salaries.
For this noteworthy Money Is Changing campaign, 1,411 millennials and 831 Gen Xers ages 22 to 53 were asked all about their thoughts and feelings concerning finances. Subjects included spending habits, asking for a raise, budgeting, stay-at-home dads, and the aforementioned willingness to discuss personal $ituations.
The disparity between the two generations' answers revealed that the cultural discussion around money is definitely straying away from the more traditional housewife days of the past (62 percent of millennial women say they'd never quit their job, no matter how much their partner rakes in), but there are still long strides to be made before women feel fully comfortable embracing the financial power they've been steadily working to achieve. As the survey summary reports, "a gender gap exists in Millennials' relationship with money," with women saying they are "more likely to feel financially stressed, less confident, and more uncomfortable about money in the workplace, at home, with friends, and in relationships."
How do we change that? Speak up! Speak out! We're not asking you to be rude or showy here; we just want you to call out gender pay gaps in the workplace, or encourage a friend struggling to support herself financially that she's not alone and tell her about an affordable meal service. Women have earned the right to have and handle their fiscal responsibilities, and only through open and honest conversation will they be empowered to do so with self-assurance — and help their fellow money-makin' sistas do the same.
See below for more interesting millennial highlights from the study, and if you're so inclined and emboldened, bring up a few of these topics over brunch with the gal pals this weekend. The more you know, right? We'll raise our figurative mimosas in a cheers to you.
1. The Glossy Gender
Survey says 89 percent of millennial ladies think it's more expensive to be a woman, and 63 percent of millennial men agree—just one more reason tampons should be free, amirite?
2. Whoa, Baby!
Nearly half of millennials who expressed interest in having children had no idea how much it costs. Newsflash: it's a lot. Here's a handy (and slightly depressing) breakdown of The Best and Worst States to Have a Baby in 2018.
3. Making Ends Meet (Barely)
No matter how much they actually make, female respondents were more likely to feel like they're living paycheck to paycheck than their male counterparts.
4. She Works Hard for the Money, So You Better Treat Her Right
Two in three millennial women believed there's a gender pay gap, and about a third of women believed it affects them personally. (Hey! Want to make sure the money's working hard for you too? Check out our 4 Smart Moves to Make With Your Wedding Gift Money.)
5. Got Your. Pay. Back
Let's end on an uplifting note: When you're counting pennies, you can also count on your besties. Seventy-four percent of millennial women said they were cool with treating their friends without expecting anything in return. While you don't want to become that girl who abuses that sort of thing, there's nothing wrong with letting yourself be covered every now and again — especially if you've done something worth celebrating like finally asked for that raise (hint! hint!). Just repay the favor in the future.