When a friend needs something, it’s nice to help them out, especially if they need a particular product and all the stores are closed.
But with product shortages of all kinds happening right now, some may be more reluctant to help out, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor Maleficient_Donkey368 didn’t take this into consideration when a good female friend needed feminine products and he gave her an entire box from his wife’s supply.
His wife was furious with him after the fact, and the Original Poster (OP) questioned if he had done something wrong by helping his friend.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for giving away my wife’s period products without asking her first?”
The OP received a surprise text from one of his friends.
“My (27 Male) wife (24 Female) and I live in a small town and recently my close friend from childhood (27F) moved here as well.”
“A couple of days ago, my friend messaged me in the evening around 8 PM, asking if there were any stores open. She was looking for a drug store specifically.”
“As I said, it’s a small town and everything closes at 6 PM, and the city is an hour away, and everything would also probably be closed by the time she drove there.”
The OP decided to help his friend out.
“After some more prodding, she tells me she’s out of period products.”
“So I looked under the sink and saw that there was an unopened box of pads.”
“I told my friend that she can have it, and I gave her the box of pads.”
“Then I texted my wife (who’s staying with her parents for the week) about what happened and also told her that I’ll replace it the next day.”
The OP’s wife was furious with him.
“The next thing I know, I got a bunch of texts from my wife calling me an AH, saying that I should’ve asked her first, and she would’ve told me no.”
“I also got texts from her sister telling me how weird this situation was.”
“I guess she had a more conservative upbringing, whereas I feel like this isn’t any different than my friend running out of toilet paper or toothpaste and didn’t see the need to run it by my wife first.”
“But I’m feeling like an AH here for not keeping that into consideration, I guess I wasn’t thinking about how my wife would’ve felt. I just thought, well, my friend needs pads and I have a box.”
The OP also noted that he was used to sharing with those in need.
“I see so many comments saying they were personal items. But I guess I grew up in a household where my mom kept the downstairs bathroom stocked with pads and tampons for guests to use, so to me, they feel more like household items.”
“I’d be fine if she gave away my shampoo for instance since we use different shampoos.”
“Also, I didn’t text my wife right away because she takes hours to respond and usually longer when she’s at her parents’.”
He was also prepared to replace his wife’s products.
“I also should add that I’m the one that makes sure our toiletries including her pads are stocked.”
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 as confused by the wife’s reaction as the OP was.
“NTA. Unless I’m missing something, like the brand or size being rare and particularly difficult to replace with the same product, or she was secretly hiding her spare cash there or something.”
“Otherwise, I can’t figure out why your wife should even care.”
“You’d replace them before she could possibly need them, it’s a readily available drug store item, and it’s a bit of an emergency on the part of your neighbor. No harm, no foul.” – SameSpayedPI
“It’s literally girl code that if a girl needs a pad or tampon and you have extra, to give it to her because that’s an emergency and common decency.”
“And she’s not even home to use them, OP is the one that buys them and stocks them in the house?”
“So he gave a friend in need something HE BOUGHT, that’s easily replaceable, and not currently needed?”
“His wife needs help because her family taught her all the wrong lessons.” – MamaHuntress
“I was raised that way too, periods were something to be ashamed of and had to be hidden from fathers and brothers. She’s still young, and it can take some time to get rid of the toxic ideas we’ve always taken for granted because that’s just how it was growing up. Even when you’re deliberately trying to let things go, it can be hard!”
“Maybe this will make her start to question some of the shame she doesn’t deserve to be carrying around still.”
“Anyway, I’m going with NAH. (You did nothing wrong, and your wife way overreacted, but I think I understand why.)” – EmilyAnne1170
“In the nicest way possible, your wife needs to work out some issues.”
“I can’t even come close to imagining being mad about something like this. Her reaction is so incredibly weird, when you say conservative, do you mean like… the Mormons with the magic underwear?”
“NTA, I’m just completely baffled by her response.” – calmhippoofindigo
“NTA at all, and next time you go to Costco or another big box store, start picking up extra period products.”
“That way, if someone’s over, there’s a guest supply, and you have unopened boxes to donate to women’s shelters and such. If your town is that small, anyone struggling with food insecurity or housing insecurity would also struggle to get hygienic supplies.”
“Be the change for your wife to make it less of a shameful issue and something that you’re more than happy to make sure others are taken care of.” – CocklesTurnip
But others said the OP really should have asked his wife first.
“YTA. You have to ask first. I realize she was staying somewhere else, but who knows if she was going to call a moment later and need them or she’s just waiting to need them, etc.”
“Those are very personal products and they are HERS. I imagine she would offer some of them, maybe even the whole box, but they’re hers, not yours.” – QuitaQuites
“Yes, there is a shortage. Specifically tampons, but there are fewer pads available too since some tampon users are being forced to use pads instead. My local target/grocery store has been out of my preferred brand/type of pads for nearly a month now.”
“I would be P**SED if someone gave an entire package of mine away.” – abishop711
“There is a difference between giving away 1 tampon away and giving an entire box away during a product shortage in a small town where you can’t get anything after 6 PM.”
“Also, no matter what her reason is for being upset, they were items that belonged to her, not a shared item in the household that OP gave away without her permission. That is violating even if you don’t have weird feelings about periods.” – DrBMedicineWoman
“The only way this is really an ‘excusable’ reaction is if her products are part of the current shortage and she has allergies to other products. My sister can only use 1 specific brand to avoid rashes and it’s affected.”
“That’d be a good enough reason for me to be annoyed that he gave away a whole box instead of just a few to hold her over until she could go to the store the next day.” – PezHeadx
“NAH. Some people have stricter boundaries about who can give away their personal products so I’m not going to fault your wife for being upset about it. Giving somebody else’s things away without asking isn’t particularly cool.”
“On the other hand, your friend was in a tight spot and you were able to help her out. Not sure why you needed to text your wife about it if you were able to replace them before she got back, but live and learn.”
“Do you live in one of the regions/countries that’s currently having a period product supply shortage? Because if she only has a particular product that works for her and that’s one she can’t find right now, this may be why she’s so angry.”
“You say she has multiple boxes, but if she has a heavy flow that may not be that many ‘periods’ worth of product.” – suffragette_citizen
Some were uncomfortable with the OP’s relationship with his childhood friend.
“I find it bizarre that she decided to call op up about drug store hours… like? I get she just moved to a new town, but it shouldn’t be that hard to just Google Map all the stores and the hours? I’m also guessing that’s why the wife blew up… it’s… weird to me.” – chocobuncake
“Weird. NTA, but maybe your wife feels weird about a woman feeling so close to her husband that she can ask for help with period products?”
“This 27-year-old woman knows no other woman in town and has planned so poorly as to call a married friend to ask for help?”
“Your wife blew it out of proportion though, and that’s the only reason I can think of why.” – Tinny36
“Yeah, I’m guessing this is more that the wife is weirded out that this close female friend asked her husband for pads and her husband delivered them to said friend at night while she was gone.”
“I don’t know if there’s anything in the relationship to warrant this kind of reaction, though.” – emily_lgr
“I would guess it’s more of this (jealousy) than caring about the pads. I wonder if OP’s wife has met the friend.”
“Maybe not and she feels insecure about their friendship. Maybe yes and the wife and friend haven’t hit it off.”
“His wife might feel the friend has a more intimate relationship with her husband than she’s comfortable with right now.”
“Not really defending anyone here, just thinking of reasons this was an issue.” – zemorah
“I’m wondering if it is because OP was so close to this person in his younger years and is maybe getting close again, making her uncomfortable.”
“I know that she is new to this very small town, but I feel like there is some underlying issue that has the wife truly upset.” – texanroses
The subReddit was really torn about this particular situation, how the OP handled it, and how his wife reacted. Since these were her items, the OP technically should have asked first, even if he had the best intentions at heart.
But giving away an entire box seems questionable, let alone the OP being the only person the friend knew in the area since moving in.