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Guy Leaves Extra Tip On Check Based On How Rude Wife Is To The Server While Dining Out

Man picking up the check at a restaurant
Grace Cary/Getty Images

You can tell a lot about a person based on how they treat waitstaff and others who work in the service industry.

But sometimes, we try to give those we love the benefit of the doubt, agreed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Though he found her to be a wonderful person, Redditor Mental_Manager_4814’s wife had a terrible habit of taking advantage of restaurant servers.

To point out her behavior and hold her accountable, the Original Poster (OP) worked out a new way to tip servers to compensate for his wife’s treatment of them.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for leaving itemized tips to compensate for my wife’s behavior?”

The OP was embarrassed by his wife’s behavior when dining out.

“My wife and I (in our 30s) dine out every once in a while but not too often because of my wife’s annoying habit, inherited from her family.”

“She always complains, sends food back if it’s not absolutely perfect, and makes needless requests and substitutions (she doesn’t have allergies or sensitivities).”

“It can easily take five minutes for her just to order her own food, and sometimes I’ve already finished my meal by the time she gets her food because she sends it back, asks for modifications, etc.”

“I know the restaurant staff doesn’t appreciate it. I’ve tried talking to her about this but she doesn’t see an issue with it.”

The OP came up with a way to tip the staff to make up for his wife’s behavior.

“Anyway, we make decent money and we use our combined fun funds on dates and dinners.”

“I recently started writing what my wife does on the receipt and then calculating a tip (in addition to the normal gratuity) to compensate.”

“So, to a receipt, I might add:”

“1. Complained about not having [various] beverage: add five dollars.”

“2. Asked five questions about a single menu item: add five dollars.”

“3. Asked for new drink because there was too much ice: add five dollars.”

“4. Sent meal back, though it was exactly what she ordered: add five dollars.”

The OP’s wife didn’t appreciate his system.

“She didn’t notice me doing it the first two or three times, but last night, she noticed I was spending a lot of time on writing a tip amount and asked why.”

“I showed her what I wrote.”

“She’s been mad at me since, saying I’m embarrassing her to the staff.”

“I told her she’s embarrassing us both.”

“My wife is otherwise a very nice, caring, and generous person. She does always say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ even for her most absurd requests.”

“Annoying each other like this is our love language, but this time she’s pretty mad. Oops.”


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 enjoyed the OP’s pettiness and hoped the itemization would open his wife’s eyes.

“NTA. This is great. Maybe seeing it written down will give her some perspective.”

“These types of patrons are the worst, and it’s such second-degree embarrassment when they are at your table.” – HeirOfRavenclaw

“NTA. I’m a former server who worked at multiple restaurants. I would have HATED your wife, no matter how polite. I have other tables and she sounds like a time drain who’s impossible to please.”

“Your embarrassment isn’t an overreaction, the servers are definitely judging and gossiping about it. I appreciate your itemized receipts. They would have made me laugh and been shown to work buddies.”

“Too much ice? Really? Get out.” – pumpkinspicenation

“NTA, but if your wife treats servers and staff she seems to view as ‘below her’ this way, is she REALLY ‘nice’? Because divorce might be cheaper than having to pay apology money for your wife being a rude a**hole every time you go out.” – AcanthisittaKlutzy40

“NTA. You should start with $2 for the first infraction and then double the previous tip amount for each subsequent infraction. Loudly announce the amount as soon as the infraction occurs. She’ll like that.” – ParticularAd1735

“To someone who knows her well, you may know her as a good person, but to a stranger observing her restaurant behavior, they will ABSOLUTELY disagree. Although not meaning to offend, she’s being a complete a-hole to restaurant staff with this overboard pickiness.”

“NTA for pointing it out in a way that hopefully gets her attention.” – RefrigeratorNo686

Others didn’t think the OP was the AH, but there was no amount of money he could tip to make up for his wife’s behavior.

“Honestly, as someone in a customer-facing role, there is no excuse for OP’s wife. She can say please and thank you until she’s blue in the face, but there’s no excuse for being straight-up unreasonable and making yourself a problem for the staff.”

“It’s so annoying when someone is being obnoxious/has unrealistic expectations and yet tries to act like, ‘I said please and thank you, so it’s fine.’ But no, it’s not. You know you’re being a pain. Just stop. This is above and beyond asking for extra sides of ranch.”

“OP’s wife sounds terrible. I don’t know why she hasn’t learned to be a decent human in a restaurant with reasonable expectations.”

“It’s kind of annoying for OP to throw money at the waiters (as if that makes her behavior okay) instead of telling his wife to stop acting like that to the waitstaff. But that’s just my opinion. But I think the OP is still NTA.” – ReadingSad3228

“YTA. Your money does not make up for your wife’s behavior.”

“Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and dignity. Your wife treats them like sh*t, and you throw money at them. All you are really doing is enabling her to continue this behavior.”

“If you really cared, you would stop going to sit-down restaurants. Order takeout and eat at home or the park so she has nobody to harass.” – Suspicious_Tank_61

“You say in your edit that her behavior is bad but she is not a bad person. Great. That does absolutely nothing for the poor servers who have to interact with her. Who gets to see her good side? You. Not the servers.”

“The only thing they get to experience is your wife’s rudeness, pickiness, and inability to be satisfied while trying to take so much time and space.”

“Politeness is not kindness. Politeness is a code of conduct to show respect, but it really doesn’t matter when every other aspect of her behavior is showing disrespect.”

“These servers shouldn’t have to put up with this behavior, to begin with, and I feel like you giving a good tip is trying to compensate for her disrespectful behavior. While it is better than tipping little or not at all, it does not change the fact that this server is forced to deal with your wife’s disrespectful behavior for who knows how long.”

“In addition to all of this, please think about the context of coming out of the pandemic. Customers have treated service workers extra harshly since the pandemic started and have had to deal with unsafe working conditions and little financial support as well.”

“Your wife is showing zero empathy for these people who have probably gone through significant amounts of stress in the last five years. She is showing an extreme lack of empathy for service workers and thinks she can because it’s their job to put up with her bullshit because they can’t say no or they may get fired.”

“I’m exhausted just hearing this account of your life. Imagine yourself as a server that was helping your wife.” – wefinisheachothers

“YTA. Everyone on staff at these restaurants is giving your table a ridiculous amount of their time and effort and no amount of tips can make up for their dignity and self-respect.”

“I’m a lifetime server, and I don’t care how much you tip me, you are enabling s**tty behavior and acting like you can just give me money to be disrespected. I’m a f**king person, and if you want someone to play your wife’s little game, you should seek a submissive who enjoys being abused for money.” – Katisadogperson


“I worked in a high-end restaurant as a teenager and we had a woman like this. That plate could be exactly what she ordered and she would send it back. The 4th time she came in and did it the chef came to the table to see what the issue was. She was always very polite and said how she wanted it changed.”

“The chef told her, ‘Please, the next time you order make sure you order it exactly as you would like it.’ She agreed.”

“The fifth time came, the waiter picked up the plate he just put down and the owner took it out of his hand. He asked what the problem was, and she told him what she needed changed. He asked if she ordered it that way. She said no but she wanted it that way now.”

“The owner handed the plate to the waiter and told him to take it to the kitchen. He turned to the couple and told them their business was no longer appreciated at his establishment. There would be no bill for their drinks, but they needed to leave.”

“The husband was mortified. The wife said this is the only upscale restaurant without a 45-minute drive. The owner told her she should have thought of that before wasting hundreds of dollars of food and running his staff ragged.”

“He said the chef was sick of perfect food being sent back. She made a comment about the chef. His reply was, ‘He’s my brother and one of the owners, goodbye.'”

“Restaurants will get sick of her if you return to the same one all the time.” – MaryAnne0601

After receiving feedback, the OP shared a follow-up conversation he had with his wife.

“Alrighty friends, we’ve had our laughs and shared our perspectives. Since my wife frequents this subreddit, I went ahead and showed her this post.”

“With that said, I’d like to address a few things:”

“First, she and I both know that any posts on this sub are peepholes into people’s lives and characters, not display cases. Yes, my wife’s behavior when dining out is bad, which is why I tried to think of a way to point it out and make up for it. That said, she’s not a bad person. Learn to separate the two and you’ll get far in life.”

“Secondly, when I say she was (well… is) mad at me, I don’t mean that she is deeply hurt and distraught. She’s calling me an a**hole, yes, but that’s normal for us. If this was something that was actually hurtful to her, I wouldn’t be sharing it online.”

“Anyway, she would like for you all to know that she is taking your responses to heart and she is going to be more mindful of how she dines. She would like to add that she didn’t think it was a big deal before because, as she puts it, she doesn’t think twice about meeting expectations in her line of work, even if they are above and beyond the norm, she’s just happy to meet demand, but she recognizes that not everyone feels that way. She’s going to try to be a better customer.”

“She said reading this was brutally eye-opening but we both also found some laughter and had a good discussion.”

The subReddit was infuriated by how the OP’s wife chose to treat servers when dining out, and they were torn over whether or not the OP’s itemized tipping system would help. On the one hand, it might open his wife’s eyes to her behavior, but on the other, it might give her the excuse to act as terrible as she wanted as long as her husband kept paying more money.

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.