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Rise of the Female Breadwinners: Lindsay Groff

Photo: Photo by Sarah Brooke Lyons, License: N/A

Photo by Sarah Brooke Lyons

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Has your career altered your personal life?

Not really. I mean to a certain extent I guess hairdressers have a lot of fun, just because it’s not like I’m pushing paper or something. You know, I just get to go do something that is somewhat innate and in my skill…kind of be a robot sometimes. I probably have stayed out a little longer, said ‘yes’ to more than I would if I had to go be under my boss’s thumb all day or something.


Did your mother work when you were growing up?

Yes, my mother—single mom—was an LVN my whole life until I was about 10 and then she went back to school and got her associate’s degree and her RN.

And LVN is?

Licensed Vocational Nursing, and then there’s Registered Nursing. There’s also an associate’s degree in Registered Nursing and a bachelor’s degree in Registered Nursing. So she went from an LVN to an RN, but just an associate RN.

So when you graduate?

When I graduate, I’ll have my bachelor’s RN, my BSN, so I’ll break my mom by the time I’m done, even though she’s been a nurse for over 30 years.

Are you planning to always be the primary breadwinner?

I always plan on being independent enough that I won’t need anybody to be the breadwinner. Partnering with somebody that potentially makes more than me is fine but I will never be dependent upon someone. I’ll always make sure that I don’t incur anything that I couldn’t handle on my own.

How has being the primary breadwinner affected your relationship(s)?

It has. I think it’s emasculating to some. It can be an issue. Especially because I am so independent, people perceive that as that I don’t need anybody. [In] my relationships, people get offended that I don’t need them. Being independent is an emotional thing for me, too.

So your independence is more than just financial.

Yeah, so I guess in my relationships, my financial and emotional independence is hard for some to swallow.

How do you think society views female breadwinners?

I guess that depends what section you’re looking at. I think as a whole, we’re progressive towards that but there’s definitely a lot of ‘old-school’ out there still that doesn’t believe in women’s advocacy or that women should be the ones taking care of the family. I would hope that for the most part they think it’s a good thing.

What does “having it all” mean to you? Do you think you have it all right now?

I don’t think it’s necessarily material things, but it’s definitely some financial security…I guess not living beyond your means is what that means. Whether you have lots of money stashed away and a big nest egg, I guess that’s important to some. Other people might not have a large nest egg but they have everything they need that is paid for—whether that’s a Mercedes or a moped, they’re financially stable. My family’s happy and healthy but I’d like to be able to provide a little bit more for them.

Rise of SA’s Female Breadwinners
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