Physical conditions, whether or not they’re visible or obvious, are serious and often require accommodations.
But even when accommodations aren’t required, why wouldn’t a person still utilize something that would make them feel a little more comfortable, questioned the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Struggling with Plantar Fasciitis, Redditor plantarproblem was in the habit of wearing shoes all the time, including outdoor shoes and indoor shoes.
But when their mother-in-law refused to let them wear indoor shoes at her home, no matter what, the Original Poster (OP) no longer felt welcome there.
They asked the sub:
“AITA for refusing to stay in my husband’s childhood home if his parents wouldn’t let me wear shoes inside?”
The OP wore specific shoes for their Plantar Fasciitis condition.
“I have Plantar Fasciitis (PF) and am in the middle of a rotten flare-up.”
“One of the most important aspects of handling it is making sure to keep your arches supported at all times.”
“This means that I basically haven’t walked around barefoot for more than a minute here or there for the past… 5 years.”
“I have a pair of OOFOS shoes for inside only, and they’ve never been beyond the front door to my house. Then I have extra supportive other shoes as well. Then I have a pair of travel shoes that I take with me if I’m ever visiting someone’s home.”
The OP’s mother-in-law (MIL) was not prepared to be accommodating.
“Well, I guess that was a huge issue for my mother-in-law (MIL) because of what happened when we visited her home for the first time since it (PF) started.”
“I thought everything was going to go fine until I switched into my house shoes, and she got on my case about, ‘No shoes in the house.'”
“I explained as I did above, and she just said it’s the house rule and always has been.”
“I looked to my husband for support or guidance, and he told his mom that it wasn’t a big deal, the shoes have never been outside, etc.”
“His mom wouldn’t budge.”
The disagreement escalated.
“I really wasn’t looking to make my flare-up worse, especially when we had plans to go hiking with them.”
“So I said that if I can’t wear them, I’m going to have to probably stay elsewhere or join them outside.”
“MIL said I was being melodramatic, and then said, ‘I’ve had PF before and I didn’t need to wear shoes all the time.'”
“I told her that was great, but that it had nothing to do with me.”
“Well, she did eventually cave, but she was pretty passive-aggressive about it all. She kept staring at my feet, staring at the carpet after I’d walked on it, etc.”
“Then when I took out my tennis ball to do my foot exercises while we were just sitting around, watching a movie together, she kept huffing and rolling her eyes.”
The OP started second-guessing themselves.
“So in general, I wouldn’t think I was the a**hole, but my FIL took me aside on day 4 and asked me if I could just try to meet her halfway and maybe just wear them when I was walking around in the guest room.”
“He said that they had extended enough hospitality and I could at least try not to be a poor guest.”
“I just said no and told him to talk to my husband about it. He said there was no need for that and just sighed, and that was that.”
“Now I am kind of worried I was a nightmare guest.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some thought the MIL was being close-minded about, essentially, a medical device.
“I’m also a ‘no shoes inside’ kind of person. But ‘inside shoes’ don’t count in my mind. The whole point is to keep the house clean, not ban footwear for no good reason?” – LabyrinthianPrincess
“Not to mention that in East Asian cultures, where shoeless households are the norm, it’s common to OFFER your guests house shoes to wear so they don’t have to be barefoot.” – JadieJang
“I’m in your corner. NTA. I have a pair of Birkenstocks that I only wear in the house. I take them whenever we travel. My stepdaughter has a shoeless house, and she doesn’t mind me wearing my Birkies.” – bookqueen67
“Plantar Fasciitis is painful as hell. Unless MIL is going to pay for OP to get braces that don’t require footwear for it, she should be content with OP wearing inside shoes.” – calliatom
“I can’t pretend to know what that condition entails, but for me, it’s beside the point.”
“MIL’s being crazy. If someone wants to wear indoor shoes or slippers that are clean and specifically not for outdoors, and they help, there’s no reason for her to have any misgivings.” – onceuponafigtree
“These shoes are no different than a cane, crutches, or walker, except that they have never been used outside. MIL is the drama llama.” – holisarcasm
“Shoes in the house are usually a hard no for me, but indoor-only shoes to me are the equivalent of slippers.”
“Nothing wrong with keeping your feet warm and supported so long as you aren’t tracking dirt inside.” – Fianna9
“Honestly, the main point should be that the shoes are medical equipment.”
“I don’t care if my guest has dog s**t on their shoes, their medical equipment comes with them.” – Cr4ckshooter
Others said that Plantar Fasciitis was incredibly painful and deserving of accommodation.
“I saw that headline and was all prepared to suggest the compromise that OP is already doing.”
“MIL is either a total drama llama or has something specifically against OP (which is, ultimately, another form of drama llama behavior when it spills into such utterly unrelated areas).” – Ancient-Quiet-5764
“I was ready to be with MIL based on it being her house and all.”
“But they’re freaking slippers that she makes sure don’t go outside. And it’s a medical condition.”
“It’s not like she’s being difficult for kicks.” – Ok-Mode-2038
“I am a clean freak with a Japanese grandma, I ran inside once when I was like 10 and got a smack on the arm for leaving my shoes on. I have never worn my shoes inside the house.”
“I don’t let people wear shoes inside my house. My Dad has PF like OP and also has house shoes, those are always allowed to be worn.”
“I let a friend who has muscular dystrophy wear her house shoes in my house as well, and once when she forgot them at home, I let her wear her shoes because they’re medical equipment, and while I’m an uptight b***h, I’m not that uptight.” – SiteElectrical8401
“As someone with PF, the bit about MIL rolling her eyes at the tennis ball exercises p**sed me right off.”
“It literally feels like your feet are on fire. It’s so, so painful. If indoor shoes are part of OP’s treatment plan the family needs to respect that.” – smuffleupagus
“It really is awful. Your foot basically loses its flexibility to walk after it has been relaxed, and the relaxed position lets the fascia shorten, and when you then flex your foot to stand/walk, the fascia gets micro tears. (That’s more my explanation of how it feels than technical medical info!)”
“The first steps are just excruciating, and my case was fairly mild. I could walk okay when my foot had a chance to warm up, but if not careful it would get inflamed and be worse the next morning. Months of wearing a brace to bed at night and any extended sitting periods to keep it flexed, plus stretching exercises. I will never wear heels again!” – human060989
“Plantar Fasciitis is a disorder of the plantar fascia, which is the connective tissue that supports the arch of the foot.”
“It’s painful. I felt like someone was hammering a nail up the center of my foot. Having a high arch can lead to having this chronically.”
“My BIL has this chronically. I asked him what I can do, and now I have a sleeve I put on my foot that has gel which provides the support my foot needs.”
“NTA, OP.” – Catqueen25
“A few years ago, I broke my foot and was on crutches for the first few days (until I saw an ortho who decided the break was so small that I could get away with just a post-surgical shoe to keep the bones in place to heal).”
“The crutches had been adjusted for my height while wearing a supportive shoe on the non-broken foot, and I have all manner of foot and ankle problems in both feet, so trying to use crutches on a sock foot wasn’t going to go well in general.”
“I went to a party at a friend’s house during the time I was on crutches, and he had a no shoes in the house rule.”
“When I arrived, I told him my crutches were adjusted for me wearing shoes (one pair in particular), could I keep it on my non-broken foot?”
“He said, ‘Of course you can! Every rule has an exception, and you being able to move is clearly one of them!'”
“And then I sat down on his stairs and scooted myself butt-first up to his living room (homefry isn’t trying to fall down a flight of stairs by crutching her way up!).”
“Showing up with shoes you only wear indoors and wearing them indoors is perfectly acceptable, even in a no-shoes house! Their carpet will survive clean shoes for a week!” – JoDaLe2
The subReddit was shaking their head at the mother-in-law’s reluctance to allow the OP to wear the indoor shoes they needed for comfort for their condition. They also totally understood the OP wanting to stay somewhere else so they could be properly cared for.