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Woman Upset After Parents Leave Dad’s Birthday Dinner Before Her Wife Is Finished Eating

A woman eating a meal
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We can all agree that there are certain rules we should follow to comply with standard dining etiquette.

But as adults, we should also realize that things are sometimes going to happen that are out of our control, like being held up at work, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor Historical_Reply_805 recently hosted a birthday dinner at a restaurant and was disappointed when her daughter-in-law (DIL) was late to the meal.

To make a point, the Original Poster (OP) and her husband left with the rest of the party when the meal was done, even though her daughter-in-law had arrived late and was not done eating.

She asked the sub:

“AITA for leaving the restaurant even though my DIL (Daughter-in-Law) hadn’t finished eating yet?”

The OP planned a birthday dinner for her husband.

“I (58 Female) invited everyone in my family out for dinner at a nice restaurant for my husband’s 60th birthday. I told everyone about the event a month ago.”

“The guest list also included my daughter, Sarah (Female 24), and her wife, Elizabeth (28 Female).”

“Elizabeth works in a demanding, stressful but well-compensated corporate position. She does tend to overwork herself.”

The OP was disappointed when her daughter-in-law (DIL) was late to the meal.

“Unsurprisingly, she was late to the dinner. Sarah said Beth had cleared her schedule for the day but there was a last-minute issue and she had to leave for work.”

“Elizabeth made it while everyone else was starting dessert. She apologized, gave us a fancy bottle of wine as a gift, and sat down.”

“We were all done and ready to go but Elizabeth hadn’t fully eaten yet.”

The OP and her husband decided to leave anyway.

“It was getting late so as people started leaving, my husband and I also decided to leave as it was getting late. We didn’t wait for Elizabeth to finish her dinner.”

“The next day I got a call from Sarah saying it was not okay for us to just leave them by themselves like that.”

“I explained and said that it was getting late but she insisted we should have stayed.”

“I may be an AH here when I said maybe she needs to take off her rose-colored glasses about Elizabeth.”

“She got upset and hung up the phone.”

“Was I an AH?”

When asked what Elizabeth ordered for dinner, the OP stated in a comment:

“She ordered an appetizer, not a whole meal, but it still took a while for her to order, for the food to arrive, and for her to eat.”

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 felt Elizabeth could have handled the situation better but questioned the OP’s ‘rose-colored glasses’ comment, as well.

“NTA. Elizabeth should have joined and had dessert. If she wanted a meal, it could be packed up and taken home.”

“You should apologize for the rose-colored glasses comment, though, but not for leaving when the meal was done.” – Physical_Ad5135

“YTA for making that comment about rose-colored glasses and Elizabeth.”

“You are right that you didn’t need to stay as everyone was leaving and Elizabeth was very late. Elizabeth could have taken her food to go if she didn’t want to sit by herself.”

“But you lost the high ground when you insulted your daughter and her wife.” – Treehousehunter


“When you’re that late for a dinner date… You call, apologize, make sure they get a gift, and maybe offer to treat them to dinner to make up for missing the birthday dinner. What you don’t do, is show up at the end and think everyone should sit there while you eat.”

“As for you, there was no need for the comment about rose-colored glasses. You simply could have stated that you disagreed with it being rude to leave when she was still eating. Cause I somewhat agree with you.”

“While it is USUALLY rude to leave before someone is finished eating, it’s also very rude to show up (from what I can gather) over an hour late for dinner and expect someone to sit there while you eat. She should have either had a dessert and placed a to-go order, not eaten and picked something up on the way home, or never went in the first place and made it up to you later.” – SigSauerPower320

“There would have been an NAH in this situation except you said what you said at the end, making YTA. What rose-colored glasses? That her wife works in a high-demand job that she gets compensated for and thus, has to be available to do the work?”

“Maybe she could have just ordered dessert with you all or not ordered anything at all, but she managed to make it AND also brought a gift as an apology as well as verbally apologizing!”

“Do you make it a habit of making your daughter’s wife feel unwelcome?”

“I want to reiterate that you would not have been an AH for just leaving, but your attitude towards your daughter’s wife makes you an AH.” – IntrospectOnIt

“Probably YTA, but it depends.”

“It was fine for you to leave, but when you made that comment about ‘rose-colored glasses,’ where did this come from? You didn’t say anything at all about Beth other than being late.”

“If you have concerns about her, fine, but don’t toss them out on the phone while Sarah is already upset. That’s a face-to-face convo. And if you don’t have concerns, it’s just very strange you’d say that.” – maricopa888

“ESH. If she arrived when all of you were already on dessert, there should have been zero expectation of anyone sticking around. In fact, Elizabeth should’ve notified everyone when ordering her food that no one should wait around for her.”

“However, the little dig you made about Sarah needing to take off the rose-colored glasses was absolutely unnecessary. If you don’t adore your DIL, as that’s just part of having in-laws, but your comments aren’t going to open her eyes to anything and will only drive a wedge between you. And, no, should they ever break up, Sarah isn’t going to say, ‘Everything you said about her was spot on, mom.’ So just keep it to yourself.” – SunshineShoulders87

“The rose-colored glasses comment makes me think there’s history that the OP is leaving out. Otherwise, this is just so strange to me.”

“My mother would’ve been happy to have a cup of coffee or glass of wine and chat after everyone left, while my partner finished eating. Because she really enjoys spending time with us, and vice versa. Everyone is an adult with a busy life, and that time together is fairly precious. That job OP is so mad about presumably helps keep a roof over her daughter’s head.”

“I suspect OP is an a**hole by how much info is left out. This just sounds like ‘she prioritizes work over family’ b***hing and that is some boomer entitlement nonsense. DIL showed up, after a work emergency, and was apologetic, but that’s not good enough for OP.”

“OP had to make her displeasure clear by leaving. Why on earth would DIL make the effort to show in the future? I would not, lol (laughing out loud).” – rumpie

“You’re supposed to be the parents, but that was a childish and petty comment thrown out only to hurt your daughter. It sounds like you have some resentment/dislike of your DIL that existed before this as it sounds like a pretty extreme reaction.”

“At the end of the day, this is your daughter’s WIFE. Not some teenage fling. The only thing you’re going to achieve by insulting her is alienating your daughter.”

“At the end of the day, it’s hard to know the exact vibe of the night itself or who was rude to whom. But it’s a pretty petty issue – family relationships are more important.” – pineapplesaltwaffles

Others felt the OP was a big-time AH, especially for hiding vital information in the comments.

“D**n, YTA, 100%.”

“And you’re an even bigger AH for not putting that in the original post and trying to manipulate the readers.” – N3fer

“YTA for not putting this in the original post and for your ‘rose-colored glasses’ comment.” – Old-Run-9523

“This changes things, OP. You’re TA for sure. Convenient that you omitted this information from your post and still don’t provide even a rough time estimate on how long Elizabeth’s appetizer took. You’re making the readers assume she ordered a full meal when everyone else was wrapping up.”

“This, coupled with your rude comment to your daughter, are total AH moves, in my opinion.” – jadedbeats

“Changing from NAH to YTA. Given your later comment to your daughter, it sounds like you scurried through that dessert to make a point. No one likes that person.” – RoyalPenguinbaum

“Why did you lie in your post and talk about finishing ‘dinner’? Everybody judged based on the assumption she ordered DINNER, not on you leaving before she could even finish an APPETIZER.”

“Did you leave right after coffee or did you even skip coffee to be able to leave them on their own? Why did you feel the need to make the nasty comment about your DIL?” – Mundane-Fix3403

“YTA here. If she ordered an appetizer alongside desserts… if it took a long time to come out, that isn’t her fault. To be fair, it was the rose-tinted glasses comment that makes you TA because you just don’t like her.”

“If it had been someone else in a similar situation, would you have just been glad to see then and spent a few extra minutes with them? I think you would have.” – opheliasdinosaur

“This makes you the AH. An app would arrive in 15 minutes, and she probably took another five to ten to eat. If you had just started dessert, which should have taken you at least five to ten minutes, all you had to do was sip coffee and chat for 15 minutes.”

“15 minutes with people I care about and like goes by so quickly. You dislike this woman, and it’s very clear in how you speak about her.”

“She was rude to be late but you know, life happens, and as you mentioned, she apologized, and it’s on you to accept that apology or not. If you accept the apology and then continue to hold a grudge, you’re being two-faced.” – marsattack13

“The OP commented, ‘She ordered an appetizer, not a whole meal, but it still took a while for her to order, for the food to arrive, and for her to eat.'”

“OP, that’s something you’re gonna need to add as an edit and you’re gonna start seeing so many YTA, to which I’ll throw my hat in.”

“What first hit me was your use of ‘Unsurprisingly’, as you are not surprised at all that your DIL was late. This shows a kind of implicit disdain for Elizabeth, even with your ‘understanding’ that she has a demanding corporate job.”

“And the rose-colored glasses comment? There is something underneath your relationship with DIL that’s pretty antagonistic, though I’m not sure which side with just this one post.”

“Also, as host of a gathering, you left before one of the invited? Honestly ask yourself, if someone else had been that latecomer, would you have left?” – Flamekinz

Based on the original post, most people could understand where the OP’s frustrations were stemming from, even if they felt that her final comment about the “rose-colored glasses” was over-the-top and unnecessary.

But the subReddit largely changed their tune after discovering the important information that she’d left in the comments section, rather than adding it to the original post.

As it turned out, her daughter-in-law had not ordered a full meal during the dessert round but just an appetizer, which would take about the same amount of time to order, prepare, and eat.

Sometimes Redditors come to the platform for validation instead of genuine feedback, and this is a great example of how that tends to play out for them.

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.