Generally speaking, anyone who shares a home should contribute at least slightly to keeping it clean.
Of course, when one member of the household is indisposed, then others might have to pick up their share of the work.
But should anyone ever be obligated to do so?
Redditor Imaginary_Wing_8369 found themselves stepping up to the plate a bit more regarding household chores when his wife became pregnant.
But when the original poster (OP) neglected to tidy up certain items, and his wife called him out on it, he simply wouldn’t have it, leading to tension between them.
Wondering if he was in the wrong, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for not wanting to tidy up when my wife’s friend is coming over?”
The OP explained why he was less than eager to oblige his wife’s request to pick up after himself.
“My (30 M[ale]) very pregnant wife (33 F[emale]) is having her friend come over today.”
“To get ready, last night i cleaned the kitchen thoroughly and vacuumed the downstairs.”
“During this time she was watching TV.”
“This morning, I woke up early and took our son downstairs.”
“I fed him, cleaned the dishes, and mopped the downstairs.”
“When my wife came downstairs 30 minutes later, we switched to her watching our son while I got ready to go to the dump.”
“While i was doing this prep (which is a decent amount), she was face timing her mom.”
“When i got back from the dump and getting gas, she was still FaceTiming and chatting to her mom on the couch.”
“I ate breakfast and was also feeding my son again when she asked me if i was going to tidy up.”
“I said no and that she should do it because I feel like i did more than my share while she sat on the couch and talked to her mom both last night and this morning.”
“She got very upset and said they were my things to tidy up.”
“It was mostly DIY and house cleaning items, which does often fall under my domain.”
“We had a massive fight.”
“She is 7.5 months pregnant but not bedridden.”
“She is able to / does a lot of what she normally does but while dealing with pregnancy stuff.”
“I know it’s hard to create life.”
“I was just asking that she do a little but of the prep that she wanted done before her friend came over.”
“While I am usually in charge of cleaning supplies and DIY items, she knows where they all go.”
“It was not a lot and i was hoping she could handle some of that stuff since I handled everything else, which was a lot more.”
“AITA for not wanting to tidy up?”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
The Reddit community was fairly divided on where they felt the OP fell after declining to pick up after himself, even though the majority felt he was the a**hole for doing so.
Most agreed that the OP’s wife was right, and since the majority of what needed to be put away was his own things, then it was his responsibility to clean it up, particularly as his wife was pregnant.
“So you cleaned but didn’t put away the cleaning supplies?”
“Or your DIY stuff laying around?”
“Doesn’t sound like you finished the job.”
“Want a gold star for filling the tank?”
“Do you want kudos for literally just being a parent?”
“She’s heavily pregnant. She must be exhausted.”
“You may think it isn’t fair, but unfortunately, you’ll never get to carry your kid for nine months and find out if it is.”
“It IS your stuff, after all.”
“The other stuff you did was called being an adult and parent.”- StressedBird
“Your wife is very pregnant, and you are responsible to pick up after yourself.”- KillerKittenInPJs
“She’s extremely pregnant.”
“I think it’s great that you’re taking in some of the household chores and helping.”
“It’s hard to do chores when heavily pregnant.”
“Cheers to you on that.”
“But I mean.. if it’s your mess, then you should clean it up.”- No-Actuary-9388
“She’s ‘very pregnant’ as you yourself said.”
“Her job is to grow a literal human.”
“Your job is everything else.”
“If she’s able to contribute more, great, but if not, deal with it.”- AceyAceyAcey
There were a few, however, who were a little more sympathetic to the OP, and who agreed that he shouldn’t be the only one expected to keep their house tidy.
“OP, what I think you should take away from this thread is that people are very divided on this, likely along gender lines and ingrained biases.”
‘If I understand your post correctly, you took care of almost all of the chores for two days while your wife did zero, and then she refused to assist with a few minutes of light work, picking things up.”
“And she took you for granted by treating you like you did zero.”
“You didn’t mention any special doctors’ orders, so I’m going to assume normal pregnancy.”
“Pregnant wife deserves a lot of grace and slack and plenty of breaks, but she’s not immobile.”
“By DIY, I assume you mean tools for fixing things around the house.”
“That’s sexist if she has you assume the exclusive responsibility for that, like saying laundry and kitchenware are for her to pickup.”
“You both can pitch in.”
“It’s her friend, if she wants it cleaned a certain way, she can handle that.”
“It seems like he already did a lot that morning alone, and she didn’t seem to care.”
“My mom (while pregnant) would have already cleaned up anything she didn’t want her friend to see by the time he got back from the dump.”
“It’s the entitlement that bothers me.”
“The way she said, ‘aren’t you going to tidy up?’ really frustrated me, especially after all he did that morning.”
“I know this an unpopular opinion, but don’t talk to people like it’s an expectation. Ask NICELY!”- jd_5344
“I fully understand she is pregnant, but she could load the dishwasher or just do one job.”
“He has done a lot and been rushing around all morning.”
“Does he not deserve to be cut some slack too?”
“Just because she is pregnant doesn’t mean she is incapable.”
“What about single mothers in high-risk pregnancy with a toddler at home and no support.”
“Do you think they just sit down all day and do nothing?”
“He isn’t saying that he expects her to do everything, but just something to help out is better than nothing.”
“He sounds like a wonderful partner to have done all of that.”- Katherinekc2468
“Imagine if the genders were reversed how bad the ‘lazy husband sitting on the couch all day’ would be crucified.”
“OP sent the whole night/day cleaning the house to make it presentable for HER friend, and all she did the bare minimum of watching their child while OP was hauling stuff to take to the dump.”
“OP fed their child, cleaned the dishes, mopped, hauled stuff to the dump, and filled up the vehicle all before eating breakfast.”
“When he finally gets to eat breakfast (while also feeding their child at the same time), all she has to say is, ‘Are you going to tidy up?’.”
“What an AH thing to do.”
“If they are dangerous to have out with a child around, then why did OP’s wife spend the entire time FT her mom?”
“If all she wanted was that stuff to be tidied up and nothing else, why didn’t OP’s wife say anything in the beginning?”
“Nowhere does OP state the DIY and cleaning supplies are his stuff, just that it is normally his responsibility to clean up.”
“I’m going with NTA because OP did a ton of work to get the house presentable for his wife’s friend.”- Broking37
While others didn’t sympathize with either the OP or his wife, feeling they both could have handled this situation much better than they did.
“The DIY and ‘your stuff’ is probably something she wanted to be tidied before her friend came over.”
“You believed the priority should be cleaning the majority of the house that a guest will be around.”
“Washing up after making food is negligible because that has to be done no matter what.”
“She should have been appreciative of what you’ve done while explaining the other mess was still something that needs to be taken care of.”
“She’s pregnant. Give her some grace.”
“You heard the criticism about the rest of the mess. I assure you she does appreciate you taking care of the rest, but growing a human freaking SUCKS sometimes!”- MrsandMrChevious327
It’s easy to see why the OP was frustrated by the notion of having to do all the cleaning during his wife’s pregnancy.
His lack of understanding about her condition, however, is a bit less easy to sympathize with.
Nor can one really ignore the fact that this all could have been avoided had he simply put his DIY supplies away in the first place.