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Guy Called Out For Requiring Guests To Wear Raincoats Inside So They Won’t Dirty His Furniture

Two houseguests wearing raincoats
Henrik Sorensen/Getty Images

It’s no secret that the pandemic was hard on all of us and left some of us struggling with our mental health, from being uncomfortable with handling social situations to constantly worrying about being sick.

Fearing germs and what exposure to them could cause has become a prevalent fear for many, agreed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit, and it’s impacted relationships along the way.

Since moving into his own home, Redditor Fit-Report-5909 has become increasingly concerned about germs, to the point of worrying about any potential germs his friends and family might track in when visiting him.

To combat these concerns, he put new cleanliness standards into place, which directly affected his friends and family anytime they came over for a visit.

But when one friend walked out of his house and refused to answer his calls after attempting to visit him, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he had taken his concerns too far.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for requiring that guests change clothes before they sit on my furniture?”

The OP liked to keep his home very neat and clean.

“I (20 Male) live alone. I’m also a very neat person. My mother kept our house pristine growing up, and I helped her for as long as I can remember.”

“I recently moved out into my own place and something that I started thinking about was how many germs from outside we track into our houses.”

“I always change out of my clothes as soon as I get home, but whenever I have guests, they don’t. And I have no idea where they’ve been or what their clothes have been exposed to.”

The OP introduced a new rule in his home for visitors. 

“About a month ago, I bought a bunch of those clear, disposable raincoats, and I started telling people who I invited over that they could bring a change of fresh clothes to change into or wear one of the coats before they sit on my furniture.”

“I also offer to wash the clothes that they change out of if they want to.”

“My girlfriend doesn’t have a problem with this and started just leaving clothes at my place.”

“My mom and my little sister have also been okay with this new rule, too.”

But a friend who recently visited was not comfortable with the new rule.

“I invited a friend over yesterday, and I told them about the clothes thing before they came over.”

But when they got here, they were surprised that I actually enforced it, and they said, ‘You’ve got to f**king with me.'”

“I told them no, I’m serious.”

“So then they left. They haven’t been answering my messages, either.”

The OP’s mom had to give him a reality check.

“I was talking to my mom about it today, and she said it was pretty excessive and unreasonable to expect everybody to do.”

“I disagree but I’m double-guessing myself.”

“Am I in the wrong here?”

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 were legitimately concerned about the OP’s behavior and how he was treating others.

“YTA. Your mom is right; it is excessive and unreasonable for you to expect people to change clothes when they come over (assuming you don’t suffer from some sort of condition that makes you unusually susceptible to infection).”

“I’m not a psychologist, but it sounds like you should consult one.” – Big-Refridgerator6766

“YTA. Wow… just wow. Words cannot describe how socially unaware this post is.”

“You can go with the ‘my house, my rules’ mentality, but don’t expect any friends to visit, ever. Who the h**l regularly visits a friend with a change of clothes in hand?” – Always_travelin


“My mother also kept our house very pristine. However, we didn’t expect our guest to change out of their clothes to come over.”

“The fact that your mother didn’t enforce this growing up should be your first clue that something else is at play here. You seem to have a phobia of germs.” – Which_Tour2102

“Clearly, he has to maintain his home in the way that causes the most inconvenience to his guests and makes it clear that he regards them as sources of contamination.”

“OP, YTA, and a germophobe who needs therapy. Do you bring a change of clothes when you visit friends? Do you know anyone else with similar rules?”

“Are you or any of your friends getting sick due to no one else behaving in this bizarre way?”

“I’m betting not.” – Ornery-Ad-4818

“YTA. Your mom is also a very tidy person, and she thinks you’re being too much.”

“I would be very hurt if a friend asked me to wear wipe-clean plastic in their house as if they thought I was too dirty to be in their home. Please extend apologies to your friends.”

“Do you get a lot of anxiety about germs? That might be worth looking into it with a therapist. ‘It’s not a disorder until it causes disorder in your life,’ etc., but this is actually causing some social issues (truly, social disorder), and you actively bought protective clothing to make visitors wear.” – Ok-Double853

“It is honestly incredibly extreme.”

“In fact, I’ve never heard of making people change their clothes. If you’re that much of a germaphobe, then I suggest getting a cover or throw for your furniture and washing it after guests leave.”

“Many people here may say, ‘Your house, your rules,’ but I think you’ll run out of friends fast with those rules.”

“For your own best interest, I’m saying YTA.” – pigeon888

Others pointed out people could decide whether or not to visit the home with his rules.

“Dear OP, please look up obsessive cleanliness and germophobia. It sounds like you have an obsessive-compulsive disorder.”

“There really is such a thing as being too clean. We have to have regular exposure to a wide variety of microbes to keep our immune systems healthy and to replenish the microbiomes of our skin, airway, gut, and other biological operating systems.”

“For the most part, what you call germs are our friends, organisms we have evolved with and need. And even when they’re not so good for us, they can still help us by making us stronger.”

“I’ll say NAH because I believe you just don’t know better, but your friend’s reaction was pretty natural.” – Insitu99

“NAH. You can have any rules in your house that you want, but also, don’t be surprised if people don’t want to come around anymore. I wouldn’t if I had to change my clothes just to hang out with you.” – Frosty_Musician_8631

“NAH. However, you do need to decide what’s more important to you: clean furniture or friendships. You won’t be able to keep all your friendships if you do this.”

“Also… the environment? Disposable raincoats? YTA for that alone.”

“For heaven’s sake, buy couch covers and slippers if you want to protect your furniture. They can be hung outside on the washing line to air after people visit: there’s no need to wash them every time you have a visitor.” – maenad2

“I grew up with Italian immigrant grandparents and their house was the strangest layout I’ve ever seen. Everything was covered in that plastic formal living room I only stepped foot in a handful of times and then it was only to walk through to get to the front door; otherwise, everyone used the back door.”

“There were two other living rooms but when we would visit, one of them had pasta hanging on what looked like clotheslines going across it, and the other we actually would sit in. Everyone had a pair of house shoes next to the door to change into, so when we first got there, no one would track dirt through the house.”

“I do not think OP is YTA nor NTA. Sounds like OCD germaphobia but I definitely feel you need to seek help for it and find a suitable alternative to your guests having to change clothes or risk nobody other than family visiting if even them.” – mkmoore72

“NAH. I had an acquaintance like you. There were only certain chairs (solid wood) that guests could sit on. This was a symptom of some of their mental health issues. We aren’t friends anymore.”

“It’s a slippery slope, so talk to your doctor. Please, please, please talk to your doctor. Cleanliness is important (hand washing, removing shoes, not licking light switches), but full wardrobe changes are pushing it.” – StarTrek_Recruitment

“Everyone is allowed to have whatever rules they want for their own house, even if they are excessive.”

“And to be fair, he did warn his friend about the rule before he was invited over. Now, if a friend told me this rule, I would probably be like, ‘Seriously?,’ and hopefully get confirmation beforehand whether this was a thing or not. And depending on the friend, I would or would not go over after that.”

“Anyone who has rules like this should be aware of the consequences, which in this case is having few people who are willing to come over because few people are willing to do all of that.”

“The friend was legitimately surprised that the rule was enforced, probably got weirded out, left, and probably went no contact (sorry, OP). I would say NAH.” – paradygmatic

The subReddit was left confused by this story as they couldn’t imagine having to go to these lengths just to visit with a loved one.

While being clean and being careful about germs are smart, especially after the pandemic, there’s such a thing as being too careful. No exposure to germs will actually increase our chances of getting sick because of our immune systems not being exposed to those things, but it’ll increase our chances of losing important relationships, too.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan has been a part of the George Takei family since 2019 when she wrote some of her favorite early pieces: Sesame Street introducing its first character who lived in foster care and Bruce Willis delivering a not-so-Die-Hard opening pitch at a Phillies game. She's gone on to write nearly 3,000 viral and trending stories for George Takei, Comic Sands, Percolately, and ÜberFacts. With an unstoppable love for the written word, she's also an avid reader, poet, and indie novelist.