Redditor throwawayFightInGrp is an Indian woman who is a vegetarian and enjoys cooking the cuisine of her culture for her boyfriend–who also happens to be a vegetarian.
She expanded her cooking options–but remained focused on vegetarian dishes–since she and her boyfriend worked from home during the pandemic.
Eventually, he went back to the office where his coworkers began to eat the homemade meals he brought to work with him.
While many of them seemed to appreciate her cooking, one of her husband’s colleagues had a specific request that rubbed our Redditor the wrong way.
After causing some drama from her response, she visited the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit, where she asked:
“AITA for telling my bf’s colleagues that I won’t cook for them anymore?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I live with my bf in a condo we rent together in Toronto. I am an Indian who moved there 3ish years ago and he is a Canadian.”
“I love cooking and I am vegetarian since birth, he became a vegetarian because of his ex and he didn’t wanna switch after breaking up with her ( thank god for me b/c Idk how to cook meat ).”
“I only know how to make Indian food but I learnt quite a bit of new recipes during the pandemic and I experiment this with him because we both WFH [work from home].”
“Recently he started going to the office and I made lunch for him daily. After a week or so, he told me not to wake up early to make lunch just for him ( b/c it it was not for him, I can make bf or lunch whenever I want for myself ) but I told him I didn’t mind that.”
“He then mentioned the reason stating it was because his colleagues/friends eat his lunch anyway b/c it is homemade and he eats whatever takeout or food they get. So I told him that I can pack an extra portion which they can share and that was working well for a few weeks.”
“Last weekend we decided to invite his said friends over because we haven’t officially met. When they came over they appreciated the homemade food and it is something they look forward to but one person pointed that I dont pack enough protein(?) and I should pack food that has a balanced diet.”
“I sorta don’t remember what he said after that because I was internally crying. When my bf saw my reaction change he told him that he never seems to care about protein when he is gulping all the beer and that’s when the group sorta divided into two.”
“I then told them that I will stop cooking for all of them and one of those guys pointed out I was the AH for punishing the entire group because of one person’s comment.”
Strangers online were asked to declare one of the following:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
Many Redditors sided with the OP as not the a**hole.
“NTA. You have been overly kind and generous. If you don’t want to cook (for any reason), then don’t. They can bring their own lunches to work.” – crudsandwich
“Their health is not your concern. Your feelings, time and energy haven’t been respected or valued by them. Relationships/friendships all parties should bring something to the table and it sounds like this one guy is eating from yours, without thanks, but brings criticism. It’s not cool.”
“You’re NTA and no, this is not a Canadian thing, he’s an AH!!! Enjoy cooking for others if it brings you joy. You sound absolutely delightful. Food is my love language too.” – totalitarianbnarbp
“You are 100% NTA, but I wanted to offer an idea, IF you enjoy sharing your food art with any of the people who actually appreciate it and treat you with respect. In grad school, my friend’s wife (who also loves to cook!) made him lunches.”
“She offered to make them for a few of us, which was so generous. We insisted on paying at least $8-10 each. Her food was much more delicious and nutritious than anything nearby and cheaper too! It ended up being a great arrangement for all of us!” – iconicallychronic
“NTA but you should have stopped dead at ‘He then mentioned the reason stating it was because his colleagues/friends eat his lunch anyway b/c it is homemade and he eats whatever takeout or food they get.'”
“‘When they came over they appreciated the homemade food and it is something they look forward to but one person pointed that I don’t pack enough protein(?) and I should pack food that has a balanced diet.’ WTF?”
“Your bf is an a**hole for trading away your beautiful lunches for takeout crap. His colleagues had the UNMITIGATED GALL to criticize the free food they get from you.”
“‘I then told them that I will stop cooking for all of them and one of those guys pointed out I was the AH for punishing the entire group because of one person’s comment.’ You’re not their f’ing lunch lady.”
“You’re punishing all of them for taking advantage of your skill and generosity, and it all stops right now. No one, including your sh**ty bf, gets another bite. He can learn to cook and then carelessly give it away to ungrateful turds.” – Sea-Mud5386
“Oh good heavens. NTA.”
“I’ve seen that exact kind of response. There are people who feel a need to take digs at vegetarians even when those vegetarians are not bothering anyone or trying to impose anything. One of the ways they do it is to basically claim that it’s impossible to get enough protein without meat. It’s nonsense, complete nonsense, but I’ve absolutely seen it happen.”
“I have very little doubt that’s what’s going on here. I mean, maybe I’m misreading it, but from the number of times I’ve seen it before, I know how I’d bet.”
“Your boyfriend’s response, basically ‘oh, so you’re health-conscious about this, but not when you’re getting wasted on all that beer, eh?’, was actually pretty good in terms of calling him out, I think. I’m glad he at least said something.”
“(Note: I am not a vegetarian myself, but when I’m around people with a restricted diet, I’ll at least try to conform to it out of what I consider courtesy, whether it’s vegetarian or vegan or kosher or halal or whatever. And that goes double when they are feeding me.)” –dfjdejulio
“NTA. And you are the only one in this situation who isn’t an AH, including your husband who was trading away the food you made with love for him for whatever crap his coworkers dragged in off the street. The guy who criticized you for not feeding him enough protein? The nerve of that AH!”
“The cretin who said you were the AH for ‘punishing the whole group’? Huge AH. All of them should have brought you flowers and chocolate and bent over backward to make you feel appreciated. Instead they criticized you.” – strywever
“NTA at all. This whole situation is super weird, starting with your bf telling you to cook for his workmates you’d never even met and ending with them giving you their unsolicited critiques on dishes that weren’t even intended for them.”
“You thought you were doing a nice thing for your bf and it turns out he’s just been giving it away and ordering takeout. That would really hurt my feelings, the fact you continued makes you a better person than I!”
“Your veggie food sounds delicious and your bf is honestly lucky to have a partner who likes to experiment in the kitchen! Hopefully he will open his eyes to that.”
“Please stop cooking for these ungrateful wretches. They don’t deserve you.” – Dear_Tell2889
“NTA your boyfriend and his friends are T A for sure. The friend for criticising your food in your own home, half the group calling you the A H for not cooking for them anymore and your boyfriend for not kicking them all out of your home.”
“You started making extra portions out of your own goodwill and they think they’re entitled to it. Stick to your guns and refuse to cook for them anymore.” – bendytoepilot
Overall, Redditors felt bad for the OP for being taken advantage of by her husband’s ungrateful work colleagues.
They were the ones viewed as the a**holes here for essentially getting meals for free and not expressing their gratitude.
After the overwhelming number of responses, the OP updated the post with the following edits.
“PS:- I know this is childish but I kind of took it personally b/c I love cooking so much. So much that my bf does all the cleaning and dishes when I take care of cooking. I don’t know if my reaction was a cultural thing and if this is taken as a joke here?”
“Many people commented to ask why my bf gave his food away.”
“He told me during lunch when he gets his food out everybody would say something about the smell and would want to try a bite, because it is about 5 people he gives away 60% of his food ergo I decided to make extra portion though it is not sufficient for all 5, my bf would atleast eat his tummy full.”
“Honestly i taught him to share food and I think its my fault to begin with lol.”