Everyone believes they know how their partner feels about them and values them.
But sometimes they get proven wrong when they’re seen around new people together, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor Sadie3586478 was shocked when her husband tried to make himself look good by demeaning her at a work dinner with his new coworkers.
Unwilling to let his comments slide, the Original Poster (OP) ended up ruining the first impression her husband was trying to make with his new team.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for laughing hysterically after my husband called me ‘the housewife’ and embarrassing him in front of his coworkers?”
The OP was surprised by how her husband introduced her at a work dinner.
“My husband invited his new coworkers over for dinner. When they arrived, he introduced me by gesturing at me and saying, ‘This is Mrs. Smith (he didn’t even say my name)… the housewife!'”
She decided to not let his comments slide.
“I looked at him for a second, and then I started laughing hysterically.”
“I then told said, ‘No honey, I work full-time, but YES, I still act like a housewife when I’m home, because you simply can’t bother to help!'”
“His coworkers were staring at him as he tried to laugh and change the subject and ask what they wanted to drink.”
Dinner went super awkward with him giving me looks and stares.
The OP’s husband blamed her for how the party went.
“Once the guests left, he blew up, saying I embarrassed him by laughing like a lunatic and then making the comment I made in front of his new coworkers and ruining his image.”
“I told him he was wrong to lie about my status and deny my degree, to begin with.”
“He said I could’ve talked to him about it privately later but not like this, and making his coworkers think he’s useless.”
“He stormed off and has been quiet the entire night.”
“Was I out of line? AITA?”
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 found the husband to be incredibly sexist and misogynistic.
“Women have, historically, been relegated to the box of the ‘housewife and mother.’ While these are fine things to be if you choose them for yourself, OP exists outside that box. She has a career and education she is rightfully proud of.”
“Her husband attempted to publicly shove her into the box because she is a woman, and he imagines her purpose is to make him look good. He didn’t care about how she defines herself.”
“He didn’t care that if his lie succeeded, it would make his wife feel small, trapped by the definition of her gender into a support role she has no interest in filling.”
“That’s misogyny.” – SaintCaricature
“He was degrading her and putting her down by not using her name and reducing her role in his life to ‘the housewife.’ There is nothing wrong with being a housewife, but when you use it to make someone appear lesser than they are, you’re using it as a misogynistic degrading insult.”
“He treated her no different than he would treat a maid. Maids are not lesser, but they don’t hold the same importance in someone’s life as their wives would. He basically said, ‘This is the lady who washes my underwear and cooks my meals!'”
“The way he reduced her to someone who does things for him and doesn’t even give them her name is how he makes her into something ‘less than.'” – someonessomebody
“NTA. Men who diminish their partners to look better at the office are gross. He only seemed to care about his embarrassment, and not yours.”
“I’d be mortified if my husband used a lie that robbed me of my success and accomplishments to prop himself up.”
“Yuck.” – geranium27
“NTA, but he’s being extremely sexist and demeaning towards you and all that you do. He’s TA for acting this way AND for refusing to help when you both work full-time.”
“This is a big red flag, OP.” – Subject-Inspection95
“And I’d go on ‘strike’ if I were you.”
“If he’s going to make sexist remarks, he can learn that you deserve to be treated as an equal and that your career is just as important as his.” – ColdstreamCapple
“NTA. I make twice what my husband does but I still do all the ‘housewife’ duties, and he never ONCE would dare make a sideways comment like that without expecting the exact thing thrown back at him.”
“Like, my husband literally makes comments all the time about how much more I make than him and he LOVES it because, honestly, he gets to do what he wants and we have enough disposable income and made life choices to where we both have a very comfortable and enjoyable lifestyle.”
“He is in the Army and I am in IT, so the disparity is large and if anyone tries to give him crap about it, he literally points out all the things he has and can do because of me. Because that’s what a relationship is.”
“And he’s very appreciative of the setup we have, as it seems your hubs should be too.” – TeddyBearMama419
“NTA. Your husband sounds like he doesn’t respect women at all by calling you a housewife in front of his coworkers, which would be perfectly acceptable if you actually were a housewife and not a woman who works full-time and still takes care of the house because your husband can’t be bothered. He sounds like he never grew up.”
“Also, it’s really something that he said you humiliated him when he tried to make you seem lesser than him. Sounds like he has some power/control issues he’s gotta work through.” – RawBeansP
“NTA. But if this is real, why be with a man who degrades you in front of his coworkers to win points and then is lazy when no one’s around and doesn’t pull his weight at home?”
“I swear, if I had magical powers, I would make people leave every partner who didn’t do their fair share of housework and generally act like an adult running their lives. Imagine how fast people would get their crap together.” – friendlily
Others agreed and pointed out that the husband essentially embarrassed himself.
“Ummm. If he doesn’t want to be embarrassed then he should’ve told the truth. NTA.” – Changecat2
“NTA, but your husband is. What does the moron expect after he demeaned you in front of people? That you would take it like a doormat? Good for you for standing up for yourself.”
“If his coworkers think he’s useless, it’s because he is.”
“I’d use this opportunity to pull back on the household stuff and tell him to pick up the slack and be less useless.”
“And you didn’t embarrass him, he did that all by himself.” – savagefleurdelis23
“There is a big difference between him being embarrassed by something you did and him being embarrassed about something HE did that came to light through your actions.”
“He’s in the latter of these scenarios; ain’t nothing wrong with what you’ve done, OP. NTA!” – poke0003
“For real, the comment was in front of everyone, why should the correction be in private? OP’s husband didn’t pull her aside to privately ask if she was cool with being degraded (being a SAH wife is not degrading if that’s what both partners want, but OP’s career and degree are important to her, so therefore it was degrading in this context).” – SharMarali
“He wanted OP to talk to him about it afterward rather than in front of his coworkers, but he didn’t extend the same courtesy to her; he just went for it.”
“He doesn’t get to embarrass his wife for social points and expect her to keep quiet about it.” – ThePlumage
“He diminished (being a housewife is not a ‘low’ role, but he meant it that way) you in public, you corrected him. In public. As he deserved. Talk s**t, get hit (verbally).”
“Also, I’m also a ‘housewife’ and a realtor. My husband just introduces me as, ‘My wife, LetThemEatHay. She’s a realtor!'” – LetThemEatHay
“Who are these men who denigrate their wife in front of others, and then get angry when she doesn’t let him get away with his lies?”
“‘You made me look bad!’ No, you made yourself look like an insecure id**t.” – OlympiaShannon
“NTA. If he doesn’t want to look like a useless a**hole, he probably shouldn’t be a useless a**hole.”
“The OP said, ‘He said I could’ve talked to him about it privately later but not like this.'”
“So he was like, ‘You should have been okay with me being misogynistic and demeaning to you in front of my coworkers. You should not have embarrassed me like I embarrassed you because my image is more important than your dignity.'” – someonessomebody
“So according to him, he’s allowed to embarrass and belittle you and your accomplishments in front of other people by lying, but you’re not allowed to embarrass him by refuting his lie?”
“I don’t know why he would even try to pull that off, especially if he doesn’t actually do any housework!”
“NTA, but you may want to consider having a serious talk with him about both his apparent insecurities and his lack of contribution to the household.” – romantic_leviathan
“NTA, he wanted to undermine you in front of his co-workers to make himself look like an ‘alpha man’ and was expecting you to go along with it, acting like the perfect submissive little housewife.”
“Screw him, he embarrassed himself.”
“Next time if you have coworkers over, please introduce him as, ‘Mr. [Your Maiden Name], the househusband’ and see how he likes it.” – Mammoth_Classic_4183
Sometimes the people around us do things that embarrass us, but sometimes, we are the ones to embarrass ourselves, and the subReddit believed the latter was true for the husband in this scenario.
It would have been simple enough for him to introduce his wife by her first name, but by simply calling her the housewife, he set the stage for his own poor first impression with his coworkers.