Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Shereen Bingham


In the past few decades women have increasingly joined the workforce. Now more than ever women are not only joining the workforce, but they are also achieving higher status jobs in the workplace. As a result a new dynamic in married couples has begun to take place. Status-reversal married couples are becoming more common in society. These couples include those in which females have a higher status job and contribute more income to their home than their husbands. This study investigates how power, decision making, and gender stereotypes are managed and communicated in these relationships. To understand these key areas the study investigates five status-reversal married couples. Through interviews and a questionnaire this study examines several topic areas including how power is distributed and negotiated in the relationship. The study also investigates how married status-reversal couples manage decision making in areas such as finances, household tasks and parenting. In addition the research focuses on how these couples reinforce and/or challenge gender stereotypes that exist in society. The findings are discussed and organized based on trends discovered when conducting a number of comparisons including the following: comparing each couple, each partner, and male verses female responses.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Communication and the Faculty of the Graduate College In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright Erica Weigel May, 2006