Upper East Side Wives Might Be Getting 'Wife Bonuses' From Rich Husbands


If raising competitive, well-bred children is a full-time job, then the wealthy stay-at-home mothers of New York City's Upper East Side are working overtime.

In The New York Times promo for her splashy new book, "Primates of Park Avenue: A Memoir," author Wednesday Martin let a phrase slip that immediately echoed across the Internet: a "wife bonus."

According to Martin, who married into the neighborhood, loaded men, commonly investment bankers or managers of hedge funds, often give their spouses extra checks depending on how well the households are managed and the success of their children.

Martin explained,

Although Martin's revelation is ruffling the feathers of feminists everywhere, it's hard to tell just how accurate her claim really is.

As part of a reactionary piece, The Washington Post consulted several New York City divorce lawyers on the subject.

None claimed to have encountered a legal version of the wife bonus, but many backed Martin's claims on the economic dependence of highly educated women who sacrificed their jobs and rely on their husbands' careers.

What's more, Business Insider received only skepticism during interviews regarding the theory it conducted with a variety of men in finance.

Some suggested the phrase was a girls-only joke about spending money and Martin may have taken it a little too seriously.

Of course, it didn't stop readers from poking fun at the idea.

Citations: Poor Little Rich Women (The New York Times)