Roommate situations don’t always go as planned.
Big personalities in small spaces can lead to combustible moments.
One of the biggest problems with roommates is boundaries.
One of the biggest is food.
Don’t eat somebody’s food without asking.
Case in point…
Redditor Gloomy-Isopod-8132 wanted to discuss his experience and get some feedback. So naturally, he came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.
“AITA for ‘poisoning’ a housemate who ate my food without my permission and ended up in the ER?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I (19 M[ale]) recently moved into a shared place and there is someone who keeps stealing my food.”
“At first I thought it was just a mistake but even my leftovers were being eaten.”
“It was very clear that the person was doing it on purpose.”
“I spoke to my housemates about how I would just prefer to be asked first but they were nonchalant about it and none of them admitted to doing it.”
“And I haven’t caught anyone in the act so I just tried to ignore it as it only happened every couple of days or so.”
“A few days ago I came home from work with a carton of eggs that I found while dumpster diving and some bread.”
“I wanted to give the eggs the water test first before eating them just to make sure that they are safe to consume but I was too tired and went to bed early without eating.”
“The next day I found out that one of my housemates got so sick he ended up having to go to the emergency room.”
“My eggs were not in the fridge where I left them but I saw the carton and shells in the trash and my bread was opened.”
“I had a hunch that it was him because there was a possibility that the eggs had gone bad but I was also annoyed at the fact that he helped himself to my food without asking.”
“When he came back, I asked him if he had eaten my eggs and bread but he denied it.”
“I then said okay but I hope whoever ate them doesn’t get as sick as you did because I found the eggs in a dumpster.”
“His face immediately dropped and he looked visibly uncomfortable.”
“He got angry and went from saying that he may have consumed the food by mistake as he wasn’t paying attention and doesn’t exactly remember and accusing me of poisoning him.”
“He said that it’s a health hazard to bring such food in communal spaces without warning everyone first as it’s not uncommon for people in shared places to eat other people’s food by mistake.”
“He hasn’t spoken to me since then and my housemates are siding with him and called me disgusting for doing that.”
“A part of me feels like I wasn’t wrong because they were MY eggs that I was fully intending on eating.”
“And I didn’t think I had to warn people against eating food that didn’t belong to them but I also do feel bad and guilty that he got sick.”
“So Reddit please tell me if I was in the wrong?”
The OP was left to wonder:
Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.
“I lived in dorms for 7 years with 9 different people altogether.”
“Nobody has ever eaten my food by mistake (or on purpose by the way) nor did I eat others.”
“It’s really not that hard to not eat what’s not yours. NTA.” ~ DrAgnesL
“In the US, expiration dates on food are unregulated and basically arbitrary based on what the company feels like putting on there.”
“They tend to be far shorter than the actual projected shelf life of the food because this reduces liability if someone eats bad food and also makes people discard and rebuy food more often.”
“Many stores do not want to sell expired food because customers might feel cheated or mark it down because they might not buy higher priced unexpired alternatives.”
“It is very common for food to be dumpster based on its expiration date rather than from any indication it is no longer good.”
“It is easy to find safe-to-eat canned and boxed food that has been discarded.”
“Perishable food like OP describes is far more chancy, though, and you’re likely to take some risks.” ~ ExtraplanetJanet
“They have cages for fridges you can put your food in.”
“I know people were suggesting mini-fridges, but a food cage is cheaper if you’re interested.”
“You lock your food in it and put it in the fridge.”
“You shouldn’t have to, but your roommate is going to continue to be a deadbeat mooch, so it will help.”
“Just Google ‘food cage for fridge’ and you’ll see what I’m talking about. NTA.” ~ YoureNotSpeshul
“NTA. They were your eggs, why on earth would you need to warn other people not to eat them when they weren’t theirs to eat?”
“He suffered the consequences of his kleptomaniac actions!”
“And the fact that your housemates have come down on his side implies that maybe he isn’t the only one who has been ‘eating your food by mistake’ (which, honestly, is not a thing)!”
“Perhaps more of them have been taking advantage of your pocket and your plate?”
“I’ve house-shared many times over the years, and I have never accidentally eaten someone else’s food.”
“Nor has anyone accidentally eaten mine.”
“It’s not like it’s possible to see leftover spaghetti bolognese in the fridge and get confused as to whether you were the one who cooked it or not!”
“Your housemate is in the wrong and wants to twist the narrative so that he doesn’t get blamed for being a thief.”
“Your other housemates are either agreeing with him because they’re stupid, or because they’ve also been stealing from you.” ~ soiknowwhentoduck
“NTA. I had a friend who had a locked fridge in her room to keep her food because everyone was stealing it.”
“Insane to me. But it seems to happen quite often.” ~ Worried-Horse5317
“Same here. The only mistake that was ever made was me and another roommate kept accidentally using one another’s butter because they were the same brand/container.”
“We also quickly noticed and fixed it.”
“Also, it shouldn’t matter if they think dumpster diving is disgusting.”
“It’s none of their business how you choose to feed yourself, it’s YOUR FOOD🤷♀️! NTA.” ~ Fluffy-luna2022
“NTA… this housemate is just straight up disrespectful, all of them are.”
“I’ve known people to intentionally put stuff in their food to stop others from stealing it.”
“Not only that but he had no problem lying about stealing it but has a problem when he finds out where they are from??”
“F*** around and find out.”
“I don’t touch anything that is not mine.”
“It’s not your job to police your food, nor is it a requirement to share your food.”
“People do weird stuff all the time, he’s just lucky it wasn’t worse eating food that he has no idea where it came from.” ~ Boring-Ambassador-55
“NTA. If the housemates prefer a communal food-sharing system, they had the opportunity to discuss this with you when you brought it up.”
“They also could have asked you to label your food so they didn’t accidentally mix things up, but it sounds like they didn’t take that opportunity either.”
“This sounds like karma to me.” ~ Vhagar37
“Nope, you did nothing wrong.”
“Your forgetful roommate is a piece of work.”
“Once or twice I can see food going missing in a communal fridge.”
“But chronically and with nobody fessing up is the work of a bulls**t artist feeding you lies and hoping that you restock the fridge so his stomach can be full.”
“Someone is lying to your face and eating your food.”
“Who doesn’t have the ba**s to admit their error and think you are dumb enough to believe their weak lame excuse? Full stop.”
“Tell them you are insulted for this reason and your sick roommate got what was coming to him.”
“He merely got to experience the occupational hazard of being a thief. NTA.” ~ BeeYehWoo
“NTA – as much as it is petty, he lied, and he chose to eat your food even though it’s the biggest rule in shared housing to not do so… he f**ked around and found out and probably won’t be doing that again.” ~ DevelopmentPlus1748
OP came back with some info…
“Just to clarify because I see comments that suggest that I may have done it on purpose, I didn’t.”
“I have been dumpster diving for some of my food recently so I was fully intending on eating it just like I have been eating the food that I have been finding while dumpster diving.”
“I try to exercise caution and thankfully it hasn’t made me sick yet but had he not eaten it, I was probably going to end up in the ER myself because I was obviously going to eat it.”
“I didn’t randomly do it just to try bait and catch whoever has been eating my food.”
“Food poisoning is not a joke.”
“As I said I just moved recently and I’m just trying to get on my feet.”
“I also understand that although I make sure to wipe my food first.”
“Ultimately it is gross to put food that came from a dumpster in a communal fridge or pantry and will not continue to do so.”
“I will just put it in my room from now on.”
Well, OP, Reddit is with you.
Though your shopping methods seem questionable to some, people do what they gotta do to eat.
You clearly weren’t intending to harm anyone.
People need to learn to keep their hands off other people’s food.
Hopefully, your roommate learned that lesson the hard way.
It does sound like you could all use a big group chat about boundaries.