There is little more frustrating than when a co-worker steals your lunch.
But easy and efficient as it is for the thieves, they might want to think twice before doing so.
Apart from the obvious reason, that the food which they’re stealing doesn’t belong to them, they also might find themselves inadvertently eating something they are allergic to.
A colleague of Redditor Peanut_Sauce_Fiasco found themselves in just that unfortunate situation.
Yet it was the original poster (OP) who found herself in hot water for her colleague’s allergic reaction.
Questioning if she did in fact do anything wrong, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for sending my coworker into anaphylactic shock?”
The OP shared how in addition to her day job, she helps a friend out at a restaurant, where she learned the recipe for a delicious thai peanut sauce, which she has made a staple of her lunch.
“I’m at a loss here guys.”
“Realistically, I know I’m in the clear.”
‘Legally, I’m in the clear.’
“But I’m being vilified by my coworkers, and I’m genuinely considering quitting my job because of this mess.’
‘So I work a pretty standard day job, and at night I help my friend at her restaurant, which serves an assortment of Thai cuisine.”
To be honest, I’m insanely picky, but I fell in love with this peanut sauce the main chef makes, and he showed me how to make it, so about once a week I take it on either noodles or stir fry to my day job for lunch.”
“People know this and a handful have tried it.”
“It smells nutty, it tastes nutty.”
“It’s white girl pad Thai, basically.”
The OP later found her lunch frequently stolen from the office fridge, and while the thief got their just rewards, the OP also found herself in hot water owning to her lunch getting stolen.
“Lately my lunches have been disappearing, or I’ll open my lunchbox to find half of my food missing.”
“I’ve tried addressing it, but nothing has been changing, and I was pretty sure it was one of the new hires that was doing it, but had no proof.”
“Thursday I took my noodles, and my entire tupperware was missing, which hasn’t happened before.”
“I’m pissed, but what can I do?”
“A coworker shared her pizza with me and that was that, until today.”
“My boss confronted me and accused me of poisoning my noodles because his daughter (one of the new girls) ‘borrowed’ my lunch and had to be hospitalized.”
“Turns out she’s severely allergic to nuts, ate some and boom.”
“She used an epipen, had to be hospitalized and now her dad is trying to hold me accountable for her bills and condition, but I don’t see it.”
“Why should I pay? “
“I don’t mark my food as an allergen because I’m not allergic to it.”
“She was just dumb enough to steal from me and eat something she can’t have.”
“But he’s being hateful, and some of my older coworkers are icing me out because I warned him I’d report any harassment to HR if he tried anything funny.”
“Brown nosers, I guess.”
“My friend is aware and offered me a full time job, but I just can’t help but feel it’s unfair.”
“At the same time, I could have killed his daughter tho.ugh.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not at all the a**hole, and in no way responsible for her boss’s daughter being hospitalized.
Everyone agreed that it that the OP’s boss’s daughter had no one to blame but herself for ending up in the hospital.
“NTA- You didn’t feed it to her.”
“She stole it.”
“She could have killed herself.”
“My wife had a heavy duty seafood allergy.”
‘She wouldn’t eat anything without knowing what was in it.”
“Like, Cesar Salad dressing has anchovies in it.”
“Other sauces are made with seafood too.”
“It can had in places you wouldn’t expect.”
“So, she would never take someone else food (on principle first, because it’s stealing) because it could be life threatening.”
“I would have thought that anyone with a severe food allergy would take the same precautions, but obviously not.”
“Well, next time she’ll think twice before ‘borrowing’ someone else’s food.”- The_Void33.
“Absolutely 100% NTA.”
“My boss confronted me and accused me of poisoning my noodles because his daughter (one of the new girls) ‘borrowed’ my lunch.”
“And how exactly is she going to return this food that she borrowed after ingesting it?”
“It’s not borrowing when she was never planning on returning it or compensating you.”
“I’m so sorry that your boss is terrible.”
“She stole your food.”
“She didn’t ask, she just took it upon herself to take your lunch.”
“She is the TA.”
“Is she only doing this to you or is she taking everyone else’s lunch as well?”- Madison_M_M.
“His daughter could have killed herself by eating food without knowing what was in it.”
“How were you to know?”
“You don’t ‘borrow’ lunch.”
‘You ‘steal’ it.”- claypolejr.
Many encouraged the OP to take this matter up with H/R, and questioned if she should keep working under this boss, or even at this company.
“Go to HR pronto.”
“Don’t threaten HR.”
“Get this on file.”
“See if you can switch departments or supervisors.”
“Report both your boss and his daughter, the food thief.”-Away_Refuse8493.
‘Go to HR and report this before your boss spins it to them as you doing this intentionally.”
‘Read the rest of the comments later.”
“NTA though.”- ZombieZookeeper.
‘Go to HR ASAP.”
‘In HR terms what happened is someone stole your lunch and the container it was in.”
“The person who did this is another employee’s close relation, and because that employee is your manager you are facing bullying and reprisal from your manager, and further bullying and hostile work environment from coworkers.”
“You do not need to put up with this, you are not in the wrong.”
“The daughter, the boss, and the coworkers are all in the wrong and you need to document and report.”
“Unfortunately it’s unlikely you can just go back to normal, but what your boss and coworkers are doing is not just shitty but potentially illegal and certainly a liability HR should deal with.”
“Typically this type of mess is why companies are wary of hiring relatives of employees except as interns/short term hires.”
“Also, if you’re just generally feeling like you are getting the cold shoulder and don’t know that coworkers are doing anything wrong, just jot down the times you have felt treated differently as well as anything anyone explicitly said or did.”
“They likely will not get in much trouble but a difficult atmosphere resulting from conflict with someone in management is 100% something to take to HR.”
“It shows the toxicity of the situation.”-Similar-Koala-5361.
The OP later returned to thank everyone who took the time to comment, and gave an update on the situation, as well as some of her plans moving forward.
“I did email the HR rep and let her know of the situation.”
“She’s been on vacation and gets back tomorrow, so I don’t know if she’s aware of what’s been going on since last week.”
‘I should note that I work weekends most weeks, not quite a 8-5 M-F job, but yeah.”
“My coworkers mostly chilled out by the end of my shift, thankfully, after I explained to the (nosiest) friendlier person that I always bring a peanut sauce dish.’
“I guess the general assumption was that I somehow found out who has been stealing lunches and decided to poison them?”
‘To answer a common question: this was the first time my pad thai was stolen, and no I’m not the only victim of the lunch thief.”
“I usually take a late lunch, and I’m not the only one, so I’m guessing the lady who was stealing food decided what was left is a free for all.”
“My boss said it was an HR issue when I’d tried talking to him about lunches disappearing, and HR always said they’d look into it (or further into it) and nothing ever happened.”
“We’re 100% not allowed to eat at our desks, unless you have a medical reason for it, so that wasn’t an option either.”
“I’m assuming she’s fine, but I don’t know the severity of her allergy or how much she ate before she had her reaction.”
“I’m not privy to her medical information, sorry guys.”
“Suing…. Sounds like a great revenge, but probably not worth the cost of a lawyer.”
“My friend let me take tonight off to just b*tch about everything, and I’m probably going to take her job offer.’
“One commenter was right; even if everything settles down, I don’t want to deal with a potentially hostile or reactive workplace like this anymore.”
“It’s not a career with much room for upward mobility, and I didn’t feel welcome in our group meeting today.”
One hopes that the OP’s boss’s daughter has learned never to steal someone else’s food ever again.
One also hopes that the OP might find a job with a less hostile work environment.