Some people are just uncomfortable by signs of affection.
Be it a long, passionate kiss that probably should be confined to behind closed doors, or merely a simple two-second hug, there are people who don’t like seeing it or being part of it.
There are also those, who only find themselves uncomfortably by displays of affection between certain people.
Redditor Separate_Recipe_4077 was openly affectionate with his twin sons, as well as with his daughter from his subsequent marriage.
Which made him all the more surprised to hear his wife express her discomfort for the way he showed affection to one of his sons, resulting in the original poster (OP) making it clear that she was in no position to have any opinion on the matter.
Worried he may have gone too far, the original poster (OP) took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for not treating my wife like an equal parent by telling her she has no say in the way I bond with my son and also calling her homophobic?”
The OP first shared how he became a father a bit earlier in life than he expected, but thankfully developed a great relationship with his sons.
“When I (37 M[ale]) was 17 got my then-girlfriend (16) pregnant with twin boys.”
“Her parents didn’t want the babies to ‘ruin’ her future so they said that I had to either take them or give them up for adoption because she was not raising them.”
“I wanted to give them up but my parents told me not to.”
“For the first seven years of my boys’ lives, I didn’t act like a father and was more like a big brother.”
“They knew I was their father though, but we never bonded like father-sons.”
“When I was ready to move out, I wanted to do it without them but my dad let me know it was my responsibility so I had to take them, I didn’t want it at first but I’m glad it happened.”
“We started bonding as father-sons.”
“I started loving them and their love for me increased.”
“I remember the three of us would seat on the couch to watch movies, one would sit on my left and one on my right while I wrapped my arms around them, they’d put their heads on my chest and I often kissed their forehead.”
“We’ve been doing this since they were seven.”
The OP continued this tradition after eventually marrying, and while his wife initially didn’t seem perturbed by his affections for his sons, that all changed after an announcement from one of them.
“I met my current wife, 5 years ago, my kids were 15.”
“Me married 3 years ago after we welcomed our daughter 4 F[emale].”
“She saw me doing this with my kids when we watched movies and she never said anything.”
“My kids are no longer living with us because they left for college, but they come to see me every now and then.”
“My boys are 20 now but they still like to put their heads on my chest while I wrap my arms around them, they do it every time they visit and I’m watching TV.”
“My son, Liam visited me 2 weeks ago.”
“He came out to me as gay and introduced me to his bf.”
“I don’t care how my kids live their sexuality or who they love.”
“I love them no matter what, I just want them to be happy and I don’t feel any different, and it doesn’t make me feel uncomfortable to hug him or kiss his forehead, but it seems that my wife is a little uncomfortable.”
“My son visited me again last Wednesday.”
“Since he was here 2 weeks ago, so the first time ‘officially out’.”
“I was watching ‘Red’ with my daughter.”
“She was on my left, then my son Liam arrived.”
“He was tired and sat on my right, put his head on my shoulder while I wrap my arm around him, then I kissed his forehead and said, ‘good to have you back buddy’.”
“We went to sleep and the next day my wife told me that It made her feel uncomfortable, me hugging and kissing my son, and asked me not to do it again.”
“While she doesn’t mind me doing it with Lucas, my other son, straight, she doesn’t want me to do it with Liam.”
“I told her that she has no business being in my relationship with my sons.”
“I also called her homophobic.”
“She accused me of not treating her like an equal parent to my sons.”
“Thus I said that’s ok because you are not’.”
“My brother says I should understand because this is a big ‘change’ for her ,a son coming out.”
“But seriously think there is nothing to get ‘used to’ this isn’t neither her nor my problem who my son loves.”
“Am I in the wrong?”
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
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP was not the a**hole, and had every right to clap back at his wife, and seemed like an ideal father.
Just about everyone agreed that the OP’s wife was unfairly sexualizing their relationship, and she needed to be called out for doing so, with many wondering how far off the OP’s accusations of his wife being homophobic actually were.
“Your wife is sexualizing a gesture that is from parental love.”
“I would be offended and tell her that she is being disgusting.”
“At 15, your boys were fine being raised when she entered their life, so she really doesn’t have any say.”- lostalldoubt86
“Your wife is though, and definitely has some issues if this upsets her.”
“Does she react the same when you cuddle or kiss your daughter?”- PlatypusBrain
“Your wife has some deep, deep issues if she sees anything sexual in a very healthy and honestly beautiful father-son relationship.”
“Especially since she doesn’t mind the same kind of relationship with a straight son.”
“I had to delete several lines I was about to write about your wife’s thought process, because it’s just so disgusting.”
“Please, sit her down and have a very serious talk about this.”- WarsmithUriel
“When it comes to your sons she is not and has not ever been an equal parent, so she has no reason to ask to be considered as such.”
“Tell her to keep her homophobia to herself.”- californiahapamama
“She is being homophobic.”
“The world needs more dads like you.”- adrianosm_
“I wish my dad wanted to cuddle with me after I got bigger.
“It started annoying him after I was about 8.”- plscallmeRain
“Your wife is sexualizing this due to her own issues, she shouldn’t interfere with how you bond with your sons.”- Successful_Ability78
“She thinks it’s inappropriate for a father to kiss his son if the son is gay?”
“By that standard, no parents should kiss their opposite sex children of the children are straight.”
“This is so unbelievably dumb.”- BeJane759
“Man, I love the first three paragraphs of this post.”
“Your parents really did right by you, and in turn, you ultimately did right by your boys.”
“Current wife’s a problem though.”
“First, she’s not an equal parent when it comes to your boys.”
“They’re yours, not hers, and were already teenagers by the time she showed up.”
“She doesn’t really get a say in how you bond with them, at all.”
“Second, she is indeed a homophobe.”
“There’s nothing wrong with a father kissing and hugging his son, of course, but that she needs to make it about one of your boys’ orientation is just revolting.”
“NTA, a million times over.”- Zazzog
“And you sound like best kind of parent.”- Cheftyler1980
“Just what is she trying to imply?”
“I think there is something really wrong with your wife.”
“Are you allowed to do the shoulder thing with your daughter?”
“I can’t see what the difference is.”
“I actually got all warm and fuzzy reading your description of watching TV with your kids, it was really sweet, then your wife made me feel queesy.”
“I’m not sure where I would go from here if I was you, what can you even say to that?”
“How does your sons sexuality even come into this?”
“I would love to tell you ‘divorce her’ but that’s a stupid gut reaction from me.”
“She really needs help though and I would struggle to ever look at her the same way after this.”
It’s pretty sad that anyone would be put off by a father showing affection to his son.
And it’s even more upsetting if it is the fact that the OP was showing that sort of affection to their gay son is what made his wife uncomfortable.
Here’s hoping a civil conversation will open her eyes and they’ll get past this.
Otherwise, this could lead to a very rocky road ahead.