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Woman Claps Back After Coworker Says Husband Is ‘Overcompensating’ By Sending Flowers To The Office

Lena Mytchyk on Unsplash

When it comes to taking criticism, everyone has their limits.

Redditor Routine-Hat-4545 is a 28-year-old woman who is in a happy marriage and prides herself on having selective hearing when it comes to facing criticism.

One day at work, her patience was tested and her subsequent reaction left a coworker in tears.

Feeling not too proud of the situation, she visited the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit and asked:

“AITA for snapping at my co-worker and bringing up the state of her marriage?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained why she took a jab at her co-worker’s personal life.

“I have been in this job for 5 years. I have also been married to my husband(30 Male) for the same duration.”

“Except for the year we were WFH, my husband- who is a florist- has been sending me a small bouquets of flowers every monday (think 3 roses, a small bunch of baby breath…just small arrangements).”

“I have a small vase on my desk where I put them.”

“This year a new woman joined our workplace. The first monday she was here, when I received my bouquet she asked if it was a special day.”

“Another coworker said that it was a weekly gift from my husband. She made a face and changed the subject.”

“But she started making comments every single monday when the receptionist brings my gift in. Small things like: ‘well we can’t all afford to waste our money on stuff like that’ or ‘don’t you think that’s a bit tacky?'”

“I never reacted to her jabs. I am a pro at selective hearing.”

“This last monday she went over the lign IMO, she said ‘I think your hubby is overcompensating, are you sure he doesn’t have a mistress?'”

“I was pissed, and I said: well some of us love our spouses and like to show it, not all of us are staying in a toxic relationship for the sake of keeping appearances. Which was a low blow, since I knew that she was having trouble with her husband.”

“She started sobbing and left work early. And while every single person in the office says that I was in the right, that I was more patient than they would have been in my situation.”

“I can’t help but feel like I went too far.”

“So AITA?”

Strangers on the internet were asked to declare one of the following:

  • NTA – Not the A**hole
  • YTA – You’re the A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everybody Sucks Here

Many Redditors sided with the OP as not the a**hole in the situation.

“Nta. She sounded jealous. Then just mean. She got what she deserves.” – Oceanside9987

“NTA. It sounds like you ‘rose’ to the occasion putting her in her place. She has no reason to stir the ‘pot’ unless she’s nosy. You need to say ‘listen, bud, stop stalking me and ‘leaf’ me alone.’” – Anonymotron42

“I think you need to speak to HR. This woman is doing her best to create a toxic work environment. The fact that you have been tolerant for the past 5 years does not excuse for behavior.”

“Admit that you lost your patience finally and why. Tell them you will not give up your weekly gift from your husband but you expect them to make sure that she understands that her comments are not acceptable. Her jealousy and insecurity should not be your problem.”

“OP You Are NTA!!” – Betrayed_Orphan

“Don’t let her be a thorn in your side OP!”

“She inferred from your lack of reaction the first time that she could keep getting away with insulting you. She had zero plans to stop because she never banked on you retaliating against her.”

“Don’t feel bad because you were willing to be assertive with her. Look, maybe there’s an argument to be made you could have gone to HR after the third comment but even then, I don’t think a lack of workplace due process here makes you an AH.”

“NTA.” – addisonavenue

“NTA. She bullied you and then acted as the victim as soon as you defended herself. You don’t owe her anything. Maybe she’ll learn to think before she speaks next time.” – redocdog

“NTA.My ex husband still sends me flowers regularly or brings them to me himself. They’re always the same flowers.”

“Two pink roses and three white ones. Two pink for our two daughters and three white for the ones that didn’t make it to us. The habit started when I first had my oldest and I felt terrible PPD and it fixated on my lost pregnancies for some reason.”

“I felt like I couldn’t feel the loss or mention I lost any pregnancies because all anyone said was ‘but now look at he as if my living baby somehow replaced the loss I felt. And one day he came home with a pink rose and white ones and I just felt better.”

“It felt like a small part of my life was acknowledging the loss existed and that it was still a valid part of me and my life. It gave me a little reminder of them and that my daughter was here now but not a replacement.”

“And when that first bouquet died I felt sad and cried a lot, so he got another. And another. And another. 7 years later and he still buys them. There’s always one of those bouquets in my house because of it.”

“And I’ve had people make nasty comments about it. Insinuating he was cheating while not knowing the reason behind it. Comments that he must be making up for some type of abuse or ‘here’s another apology flower. Come on, tell us what he did.'”

“And I never felt like explaining the importance of the flowers to me and would just brush the comments off, but I understand how angry it can make you for people to make something positive seem bad. So I feel like your response was justified and she should have just kept her comments to herself.” – RepulsiveThing3618

“NTA – she was jealous and lashing out. She chose to speak on your marriage which makes hers fair game. It’s OK to be an ah when it justified, and it certainly was here. It’s called not being a push over.” – Tasty-Biscotti355

“NTA. You put up with her stupid comments for a long time which made her bolder in making more comments. She overstepped by continually butting into something that wasn’t her business.”

“Although your comment was probably over the line she pushed too far and you just pushed back.”

“FWIW your hubby sounds like a really thoughtful guy.” – SnooBunnies7461

“NTA she had it coming!”

“It’s not like your husband comes by to bring you a serenade, no one else is affected by a small bouquet. She’s probably jealous bc you have a good relationship and she doesn’t.”

“I would probably fill my desk with other gifts like a teddybear, and a ton of pictures of my spouse and me, just to get on her nerves, but I can be petty…” – Demonazzzz

“NTA, Honestly, I agree with your work colleagues that you were far more patient than a lot people would have been in that situation. She was bullying you and when you gave her a taste of her own medicine, she couldn’t handle it.”

“Frankly, I think it’s adorable that your husband sends you flowers every day, and anyone who says that it’s stupid needs to butt out.” – Blonde_Bard8990

“NTA, but I would do to HR fast before she gets there. She’s mad and probably looking for revenge. Tell them what’s going on and that you have been very tolerant but her last comment was just too much.”

“I bet she will deny everything when questioned. I’ve seen it happen so many times. That’s where the witnesses will come in.” – LittleLarue62

“What’s it to her if your husband sends you flowers every Monday?? Literally none of her business! You keep on receiving those flowers girl!”

“NTA.” – eternal_dionysus


‘I never reacted to her jabs. I am a pro at selective hearing.’

“You were more than patient, you were literally letting her stomp on your husband’s practice. What did she think was gonna happen if she went over the line?”

“Smile and ignore the same way as you did even if she’s insinuating that your husband’s having a mistress? FFS that kind of talk would be damaging to your family, especially if further ignoring of the matter leads to her either spreading those rumors around your workplace, or saying that to your husband’s face if she ever met him.”

“It’s good that you nipped it in the bud, and f’k her feelings, she obviously didn’t take yours into account when she started being an AH.” – No_Negotiation_7176

“The person has been sniping at you for ages. You respond back one time and she cries like a baby. Like most bullies, she is a coward.”


“The person has been sniping at you for ages. You respond back one time and she cries like a baby. Like most bullies, she is a coward.” – lolunnb

Overall, Redditors agreed that the OP was being patient enough but reacted accordingly after being criticized repeatedly.

They also thought the co-worker shouldn’t have tested the OP’s limits if she wasn’t able to handle criticism, herself.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo