We can often count on family to look out for us and attempt to protect us from potentially getting hurt by a significant other when they see something is amiss.
But does that “help” start to cross the line when allegations are thrown around that imply something sinister when the reality of the situation might be completely harmless?
Redditor throwaway47757954325 recently got a bit heated with his brother concerning one of his wife’s more noticeable hobbies, so he turned to the subReddit “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) to see if he was wrong to react how he did, asking:
“AITA for calling my brother an ‘insecure, testicle grabbing, chauvinist man-baby’ over his comments about my wife’s makeup?”
The original poster (OP) started off by giving a little history about his relationship with his “opinionated” brother.
“That’s the actual quote. I’m still pissed as hell but maybe I went too far here.”
“My brother and I are both late 30s. We get along fine most of the time, but my brother doesn’t do well in a lot of social situations.”
“He says things that are inappropriate, gets overly opinionated, yells a lot etc. He just doesn’t seem to understand tact or when to let things go in a casual conversation.”
Add their wives into the equation, and things are pretty tight-knit within the family.
“Our wives are best friends. They talk almost everyday on FaceTime.”
Now onto the crux of the matter—the OP’s wife and her love of makeup.
“My wife is an ex model/actress (local) and very good with makeup. She’s in her mid 30’s, we have 3 kids and she doesn’t wear much makeup anymore – but she got some as a gift for Christmas and decided she wanted to get more.”
“Apparently she’s been buying cheap stuff and she wanted to splurge on some good sh*t.”
“Anyway, she’s been testing it all out over the last month, buying more here and there and doing these crazy eyeshadow things – honestly I don’t know what I’m talking about.”
“She looks great all the time. She’s gorgeous without makeup. She’s really talented with it though and she’s having a lot of fun.”
“I tease her a little since she works from home and she’s wearing pajamas but her makeup looks like she’s at a nightclub. I think it’s cute and funny.”
But all of that extra makeup started to make the OP’s brother suspicious.
“My brother thinks she’s doing it because she’s cheating or she wants to cheat. He called me this morning to say he’s concerned because he’s seen her on FaceTime and he’s decided she must be posting pictures or sending pics to some dude or multiple dudes.”
“I tried to blow it off and explain that it wasn’t that way, but he got more aggressive about it so I ended up yelling at him and shouting the insecure testicle man baby thing.”
“He’s being ridiculous and needs to mind his own business. But I think I might be the a**hole for blowing up and name calling when he’s probably well-intentioned.”
The OP then added a bit more detail as to his own thoughts about his wife’s hobby.
“I want to add too (my mom and brother both asked, maybe other people will): No, I haven’t asked my wife why she’s recently starting wearing more makeup and I’m not going to because I think asking is f**king rude.”
“She’s spending her money on stuff for her face and it’s a creative hobby. I’m not going to be the dick that ruins someone’s creative outlet by asking them to justify it or by insinuating there’s a sinister motive behind it.”
“It makes her happy so I assume that’s why she’s doing it. Asking why is dumb and insulting in my opinion.”
Redditors then weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Many pointed out how flawed the brother’s logic was by assuming the OP’s wife was wearing makeup for someone else.
“When I wear makeup, I do it *for me*. Not my husband or any other man. Me.”
“Many women are the same way. Your brother jumping to ‘she wants to cheat because she is wearing makeup again’ is absolute misogynistic garbage and he needed a dressing down.”
“You sound great and seem to really love and appreciate your wife as well as understand what being supportive means. Keep it up.”—MistressOfNecropolis
“NTA it sounds like you truly love your wife and you appreciate her. Makeup absolutely does not indicate she’s cheating. It’s probably an indication of boredom.”—shangib723
Add in the current world events, and things get decidedly less malicious.
“NTA. Your wife has a creative hobby she’s enjoying. We’re all just trying to survive this godawful pandemic…”—Jazzisa
“NTA. You warned him, he didn’t listen and you had to bring out the brotherly big guns to shut him down.”
“I’ve got to say that I’m currently at home all the time too and I’m still wearing full makeup almost every day.”
“It gives me a sense of normality and lets me feel less of a shut-in. On the odd day I *do* go bare faced I definitely feel more blergh by the end of the day.”
“How about arranging an evening one night a week where your wife gets to dazzle you with her makeup skills? You deal with the kids and get them to bed early while she gets made up/puts on a nice dress before sitting down to a meal together.”
“It doesn’t even matter if you get a takeout delivery, just have some time when the lights are low, the music is smooth and suitable for a slow dance around the living room and she gets to feel like a beautiful woman you know she is rather than just a mum who is stuck inside all day.”—MadamKitsune
While the brother’s heart may have been in the right place, he needs to understand when and where his opinion is wanted.
“NTA. You’re a good person. I would guess your brother was well-intentioned, but for the wrong reasons.”
“And maybe this name-calling didn’t quite convey to him *why* what he was saying was wrong. You may need to have a calm heart-to-heart about him minding his own business once you have cooled down about it.”—I_am_Rubber
The OP agreed that a conversation needs to be had.
“I really appreciate this comment and needed to see it. Thank you.”
“I think you’re right and maybe that’s why I’m feeling so crappy about it.”
“I was mad and maybe it was justified, but you hit the nail on the head: I didn’t talk to him in a way that helped him understand why he was wrong about it.”
“I’ll have that heart to heart. Thank you.”
Hopefully the OP and his brother can mend their relationship and establish some healthy boundaries without more name-calling or baseless accusations.