There are few moments more momentous than the first time a parent meets their child’s significant other.
There are also few moments which are more stressful.
Whether it’s the child hoping their parents will like their new mate, the mate worrying if the parents will like them or the parents unending curiosity about their child’s romantic partner, it’s difficult for anyone not to be the tiniest bit on edge.
Things took a fairly surprising and unsettling turn after the son of Redditor throw_away11109 brought home his new girlfriend, which prompted a fairly shocking reaction from the poster’s husband.
Concerned she didn’t handle the situation as well as she could have, the original poster (OP) took to the subReddit “Am I The A**Hole” (AITA), asking fellow Redditors:
“AITA for calling my husband a d*ckhead?”
The OP first revealed thanks to her job, she in fact knew her son’s girlfriend already even if they hadn’t been formally introduced.
“I am a high school art teacher and my youngest son (Max, 17) actually goes to the school I teach at.”
“Because, we’re at the same school, I do see him around and have an idea of who he hangs out with.”
“I do try and give him privacy and mostly stay in my classroom or the staff room though.”
“He (sadly haha) does not take art but his girlfriend does.”
“I actually did not know she was his girlfriend until I overheard her and a few other kids talking about my son.”
But there was a reason the OP’s son was nervous about introducing his girlfriend to his family.
“I jokingly asked Max later if he had any admirers and that was when he told me about his girlfriend.”
“I understand why he was hesitant because I’m an older white lady (my parents aren’t very open minded either) and his girlfriend is of South Asian descent and her family’s muslim but I assured him that I wasn’t like that at all.”
“Well, the other day, Max asked me if his girlfriend could come over and I said sure.”
The OP assumed in this day and age her husband wouldn’t be so surprised by his son’s new girlfriend, but she proved to be sadly mistaken.
“I told my husband that she was coming over but didn’t say anything else except ‘look presentable’.”
“Well, when she arrived there was an obvious drop in my husband’s mood/behaviour.”
“I didn’t say anything at the time because I didn’t want to cause a scene but I’m pretty sure everyone sensed it.”
“The two ended up leaving to hang out elsewhere and my husband suddenly turned on me and asked me why I didn’t tell him she was ‘one of them’.”
“I was taken aback and asked him why it mattered and he said I should’ve told him so he could’ve prepared himself in case he said something offensive.”
“He then said he couldn’t believe I didn’t tell him so I replied with ‘well I can’t believe my husband is such a d*ckhead’.”
“My husband told me that I was doing too much by insulting him when he was just surprised and it was the first time a child of ours has introduced a significant other that isn’t White.”
“But I told him that no one who is simply surprised says the things he said, only d*ckheads and AHs do.”
“He is convinced I’m the AH but I don’t think I am.”
“Like c’mon, it says a lot when someone needs to prepare themselves just to not be offensive etc…”
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
There was a fairly uniform consensus among the Reddit community the OP was in no way the a**hole for scolding her husband.
Just about everyone agreed the OP’s husband’s behavior deserved to be called out and she absolutely did the right thing.
“Your husband literally asked you why you didn’t tell him to not act racist.”-J_Lmn.
“NTA and your husband is a d*ckhead.”
“If someone’s a racist d*ckhead they need to know that they are a racist d*ckhead.”
“Tell him I called him one too.”- N7twitch
“I would have been what do you mean ‘one of them’?”
“Not just a dickhead a racist too?”-Impressive_Primary18
“My Mrs calls me a d*ckhead multiple times a week and I’m not even a racist prick.”-ResponsibilityNo3245
“He said the phrase ‘one of them’ which was a dickhead move.”
“Therefore he got called a dickhead.”- trash_panda_lou
“NTA, if he doesn’t wanna be called a dickhead he shouldn’t act like a dickhead.”-captainkaiju
“He was acting like a dickhead.”
“Calling her ‘one of them’ sounds both dehumanizing and racist, to be honest.”- HisDudeness316
There were those, however, who wondered how the OP could have been married to her husband for this many years and still been surprised he could have reacted this way, with some pointing out her son seemed to be aware of this possibility, making it understandable he would be nervous.
“NTA, but how have you managed to be married to someone this long and not know he’s racist?”-Allaboutbird
“NTA – your husband is racist – racist assholes are d*ckheads.”
“You called him as you see it, and the whole concept of ‘being prepared”‘means he knows he’s racist, offensive and wrong, but knows how to put a mask on and be a fake.”
“You can’t fix him, but I would recommend you consider any of your own behaviors that might be contributing to your son’s hesitancy to tell you about his GF – if you have a relationship where you can talk to him, ask him how you can grow.”- No-Policy-4095
The OP eventually responded to this question, admitting she never did notice this side of her husband before while also acknowledging she could have handled the situation better herself.
“A few people pointed out that I’ve been married to him for so long, did I seriously not know he was racist?”
“Yes, I didn’t.”
“I didn’t know he thought this way at all.”
“Maybe I didn’t notice any signs and I know that’s on me but I’m actually going insane wondering if I’ve been that ignorant of his beliefs.”
“As for my son, I didn’t add this originally but i was pretty disappointed in myself when I had to make it clear that I wasn’t ‘like that’.”
“I raised them to be accepting of everyone and I teach at a decently diverse school so I never once thought I had to outrightly say it.”
“I have a feeling that my son may have been concerned that I might’ve been a ‘as long as it isn’t my family’ type of person like I suspect my husband is.”
She also thanked the Reddit community, finding their feedback extremely helpful for how she can be a more open and educated mother and teacher, promising both she and her husband will endeavor to be better with their son and his new girlfriend.
“I also want to thank you for so much insight and information.”
“I lived a very sheltered life and didn’t know much about the world.”
“It’s why I became a teacher, I love learning.”
“It sounds cheesy I know.”
“But I love interacting with others and engaging in discussion.”
“So thank you for talking (typing?) and just being great.”
“I will work on myself and I will also apologize to my son’s girlfriend (my husband will as well).”
“Thankfully she isn’t too upset, although I wouldn’t blame her if she was, and has told my son that she doesn’t mind coming over.”
“I believe she’ll be here this Sunday and I’ll definitely apologize then.”
“Like I mentioned in a comment, she’s in my art class but since we’re online for a bit, it doesn’t feel right apologizing to her through google meet.”
“My son agrees as well and says it may make her uncomfortable.”
“Anyways, I’ll try to be more open and try not to be so ignorant to such important things.”
“I’m going to have a conversation with not just my youngest son, but my other children and husband as well.”
“Thank you again!”
The only thing that could possibly be braver than calling out ignorant behavior, is admitting when you have been ignorant yourself.
However awkward the big introduction sadly was, the OP’s son can’t deny he has a mother who loves him and will always strive to be the best mother she can.