"Moroccan bachelors seek wives who work"

Here are short excerpts of an article which I found this morning on Magharebia web site.

“Once upon a time, a primary school teacher could easily support his family single-handedly, but that has become very difficult now. The marriage age has risen in Morocco due to the increase in the cost of living. The concept of mutual financial help between spouses is a fairly recent one, especially in urban areas.”

For 33-year-old Farid Laafraoui, the search for a wife has lasted three years. He set a number of criteria that his future spouse must meet, including the need for her to have a job. He told Magharebia that the time when love came before marriage has passed.

“Love is essential, but it is built following marriage on the basis of mutual respect,” he said. “If a couple’s financial situation is stable, they will have fewer problems. My monthly wage is just 5,000 dirhams. A second income will be necessary to run the household and pay for the children to go to school.”

Farid is one of many people who are attributing their focus on women’s financial circumstances to the new demands of daily life. Women are also aware of the change and are placing higher demands on men in return.

Narjiss Bahaoui, a 28-year-old bank clerk, said that several men close to her family and at her workplace had made overtures towards her, but that she preferred someone “ready” to tie the knot.

“Since feelings are not a major criterion for marriage, I have the right to marry a husband who already has a flat and a nice car,” she said. “But despite everything, I’m willing to abandon these preconditions for someone who would love me for myself and not my monthly income. I’m both romantic and realistic at the same time.”

Laaziza celebrated her engagement on Friday.

More pictures and her thoughts about marriage and life in Morocco next week!

Here’s an excerpt of one comment for the article:

“Instead of buying a really nice car, and going out drinking and smoking hash with your friends, if your goal is to get married, SAVE your money!!! Even earning 5000 DH a month, if you are living at home, you can put aside 4500 DH a month!! 4500 X 12 = 54,000 DH!!! There are low cost apartments that are available for 20,000 DH deposits! If you save for 5 years, you would have enough to not only pay off a 50 sq meter apt, but you would have enough to furnish it!!! When you get that out of the way, you then do not have to worry about paying for housing!!! I am not saying it is easy. I am saying it is very doable. Unfortunately, most young men want the easy way out. They want to be able to have extravagent weddings, and drive really nice cars and then marry a working woman. Well, when you marry a working woman, you actually end up needing even MORE MONEY!!! Instead of having just one car, you now need two cars. Instead of paying insurance, garage and storage on one vehicle you now need two, how about child care?”

5.000 dirhams = 444 euros / 589 US dollars

Full Magharebia article and comment here.

List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita by World Bank (2009) / international dollars


1 Luxembourg 83,978

– Macao 58,262

2 United Arab Emirates 57,821>>> 4.818/month

3 Norway 55,672

4 Singapore 50,701

5 Brunei Darussalam 48,995

6 United States 46,436 >>> 3.870/month

7 Kuwait 46,079

8 Switzerland 44,717

– Hong Kong 43,862

9 Ireland 41,282

10 Netherlands 40,715

11 Australia 39,231

12 Austria 38,749

13 Canada 37,945

14 Sweden 37,905

15 Iceland 37,602

16 Denmark 36,763

17 United Kingdom 36,496

18 Germany 36,449

19 Belgium 36,048

20 France 34,689

21 Finland 34,652 >>> 2.888/month

22 Bahrain 34,274

23 Spain 32,545

24 Japan 32,443

25 Italy 31,909

36 Portugal 24,021

37 Saudi Arabia 23,429

43 Estonia 19,457

57 Turkey 13,904

68 Iran 11,575

92 China 6,675

98 Egypt 5,680

107 Morocco 4,575 >>> 381/month

115 Indonesia 4,205

119 Philippines 3,546

120 Mongolia 3,527

121 India 3,248

176 Congo 320


Do you both work? If yes, why?


Have you noticed life become more expensive in your country, how do you notice that?


How equal women and men are in your country?





0 thoughts on “"Moroccan bachelors seek wives who work"”

  1. I didn’t work while my kids were little but now it seems like we never have enough money and I work full-time! I wish I could be home with my youngest but I don’t have a choice! I am house poor! Some day we will downsize…till then..I’m a working mom! Great post!

    • I wish you strength to work and give your financial help for the whole family. I know it’s not easy to struggle between home and work and never having enough own time…
      But I see you still have nights – time for blogging! I’ll be there in a minute! 🙂

  2. Wow,I guess the world is changing and money means more than love. That’s sad in a way. Almost like possessions are taking over people’s lives, no matter where you travel. Has American greed spread to all nations? Almost sounds like it.

    • ‘Has American greed spread to all nations?’ oh yes…we ‘all’ watch American soap operas, BB, Idols etc. your ‘world’ has always been an inspire for ‘fame and glory’.
      But you can be famous, rich and lonely. At the end that means > we all want to be loved. Just loved.
      But if you’re too busy making money you might be the loneliest person in your life. Money helps but happiness is in us.
      Money can’t buy love. Real love. We all want to be loved…?! something wrong what I wrote or what?! where’s the fame and glory what we all are seeking? or are we? huh! this is not simple!

  3. What an interesting article and so many sides to look at the question. Yes, Moroccan women work, ergo, they need and have access to better education – that surely is sth positive. But does it mean that they have all this just bec. it’s covenient for her future husband? I am genuinely asking the question, I’m not familiar with how things work in Moroccan society these days.
    And then, it’s sad when I hear couples say that they’re not moving in together or not starting a family because they don’t have the money to afford it. What happened to starting something together and progressing together?
    About that list from the World Bank – it made me think: yes, the US is #6, bec. the calculated average puts it there – but how uniform is that society? While I’m sure that the NL or Finland, for example, may have lower GDPs, but a larger porcentage of the population see a lot more than just their basic needs covered, have time and money to pursue hobbies, go on holidays etc.

    • The article (as I understood it) from men’s angle: bachelors seek women who will bring their income to the family because life here is very expensive.
      Housing, electricity, cars etc. are very expensive. Food is little bit cheaper than in Europe. (But prices in the hotels are similar to Europe!)
      Laaziza whose engagement celebration we visited will answer a couple of questions in my post next week.

      About ranking. I agree with you. People in Finland have enjoyed a hot, long summer vacation this year. Average is 4 weeks. Plus (if I remember right) one week winter holiday.
      And as I wrote before all Finnish people belong to social security system.

      Most of the countries highly ranked are oil based which is interesting…
      I wonder how soon it’s going to be clean drinking water which matters…

    • Wiser – I do hope so. Materialistic hype has been crazy. I think most of the Western world people have everything they need. But still for some nothing is enough.
      I watched yesterday UN video how millions of people die per year because they don’t have clean drinking water.

  4. Very interesting window to life in Morocco. I work outside the home. When my children were small, I worked for my husband and was able to be flexible about when I worked, which was very nice. The last few years I have a different job. The main purpose of this is to have access to health insurance and retirement benefits. Since my husband works for himself, these are expensive options for a small business owner.

    • ‘Health insurance and retirement benefits’ – a very important point. As an expat we have company insurance. If/when we go back to Finland we belong automatically to Finnish social security system which is great. In Finland (generalized) nobody needs extra insurance but it’s more and more popular to pay extra and able to go to private doctor or clinic.
      Retirement…I’ve been saving for years small amount of money so that I’m able to travel or whatever when retired (when that’s going to be?! I’m like retired already 🙂 )
      Small business owners have similar problems in Finland – work hard for your freedom to work for yourself! 🙂

  5. When I got married, I stayed at home and still do. My husband is the bread winner and he does a very good job of it :))I am so lucky. Now that the children are grown, I do not mind doing the odd jobs to have different interests and keep busy!

    • I’m lucky too! As an expat wife I have time to do ‘whatever’ I want. Now I’m trying to learn how my camera works on manual settings…
      Every day this week I have learned something new! 🙂

  6. Interesting article for sure. Personally, I think it is great that those women works there to support themselves. I’m not working (yet) in fact I just got turned down for a job I was so hoping to get. Things are getting more and more expensive here in Jakarta, living cost has gone up tremendously since when I was still working and single over 5 years ago. I still wish to get a job soon to contribute to college fund for our boy. 🙂 Have a great day! Btw, that picture is beautiful.

    • I’m sorry you didn’t get that job!!!

      But you do plan, save and sacrifice! 🙂
      I started saving when I was about 10. Since then I’ve always had my own bank account and my own money.

      As an expat wife, not working, I get ‘monthly pocket money’ which I save.
      I think every woman should have own money just in case something happens.
      Better to plan and save than regret! 🙂

  7. Am I actually here?!!!

    I have missed your blog so much!

    You and I were changing things on our blogs at the same time and I had a HUGE “cookie” issue. I kept landing on another blogiste blog. Now, I’m grabbing a cup of coffee and catching up on your blog.

    I actually got to your new blog by going to Susie’s Big Adventure and navigating to your new blog, bookmarking it, then getting it onto my blog. I’m hot exactly a whiz at this! Good to be back.


    • I saw and deleted your test comment! 🙂
      I have to come and ‘teach’ you how to find a blog (save time and energy!) LOL!
      I’ve had technical problems for a week now. I can’t log in or just when I write a post the page freezes. Nothing helps. I just have close the window.
      I hope to get help soooooon!

      Nice you’re back! 🙂

  8. In some ways, it may be a good thing Arab women work. It gives them the ability to pursue education, more equality and freedom within the marriage, and a greater voice in society.

    For the average US worker, economic stability comes through years of saving, planning and sacrifice. College is expensive and if you don’t take a degree that is technology heavy, your chances of getting a good job to pay off school loans and support yourself nicely are greatly reduced.

    • You might be right but it’s going to take generations here, as well in Egypt. Lots of educated women are working but they are minority.
      In Susie’s blog Susie’s big adventure you find a lot of comments from local women who say they are perfectly happy with their lives. They can’t drive, not to travel without male (husband/relative) companion etc. Main hobby is shopping! (Like in UAE, Egypt and here)
      What a waste of life!
      Planning, saving and sacrifice – so true!


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