Would you, if you are a young graduate woman, date and marry a blue-collar worker? A poll carried out by The New Paper revealed that 100 percent of 50 female undergraduates aged 21 to 28 had concerns about dating blue-collar workers and expressed a reluctance towards 'marrying down'.
Yesterday (Apr 16), STOMP carried an article on the relationship between Miss Eliza Lee and Mr. Michael Poh. She is a fresh graduate who studied at a top secondary school and comes from a wealthy family, while he is a chicken rice seller. But they are engaged, and are undoubtedly happily in love with each other. Miss Lee said that the prospect of being a hawker's wife has never bothered her.
But her rare mindset contrasts with that of most Singaporean women today. As The New Paper's journalist Benita Aw Yeong shared, some of her concerns about dating blue-collar workers were: "What will my friends think? Will we be able to click? Will he be able to provide for me, should I choose to stay home and take care of the kids one day?"
Ms Aw is not alone in her demands for a partner -- research in evolutionary psychology has shown that women look for men with good financial prospects, a high social status, ambition and industriousness. She added that she grew up conditioned to believe that the path to success and financial security follows years of slogging in school followed by a degree and a good job in a posh office.
And what do blue-collar workers have to say about this issue? Mr Ridzwan Salim, a 25-year-old restaurant supervisor that still waits on tables with his team of 11 at KT's Grill at Universal Studios Singapore says he is proud of his job, but does not reveal his occupation to people he has just met, unless they ask. He admits that he has been rejected by a number of potential girlfriends because of his job, but is now engaged to an assistant manager in another restaurant.
STOMPer Stacie shared her own views:
"I don't want to sound snobbish but to be perfectly honest, I wouldn't date a blue-collar worker.
"I come from a family in which both my parents have stable office jobs, and I myself am a university graduate.
"If I were to bring home a boyfriend and introduce him to my family and friends as a hawker or security guard, I don't know how they would react. I would want to date someone who is pretty much on the same 'level' as me.
"Like most Singaporean women, I share the same concerns as them about whether a blue-collar worker can provide for me and whether or not we can get along despite coming from such different backgrounds.
"But I'm not ruling out the possibility of blue-collar workers being good boyfriends and husbands who would still give it their all in a relationship. I think ultimately, that is most important. Just because someone is a white-collar worker, it doesn't guarantee that they would make a better boyfriend or husband than someone who is a blue-collar worker."