Society as a whole has become more and more dependent on technology.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as it’s pretty convenient to make calls, check emails, surf the web, and order important deliveries from your phone.
The downside, of course, is that we often find ourselves staring at screens for the majority of our days, making it necessary to find some time put aside which we can dedicate to being phone and screen-free.
Redditor Remarkable-Use-8439 and a close friend of his dedicated one weekend a year to putting their phones away, and instead dedicating their time to exploring the city and engaging in conversation.
An annual trip the original poster (OP)’s wife had her reservations about.
Her fears proved to be somewhat well-founded after she called her husband with a genuine emergency, but he missed her call, having it shut off completely.
Wondering if he had done anything wrong, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for missing an actual emergency because I turned off my phone to avoid my wife’s unnecessary contact attempts during my tech-free weekend?”
The OP explained why he didn’t feel much guilt over missing his wife’s call, even though it proved to be rather serious.
“My best friend (31 M[ale]) and I (27 M[ale]) have a tradition of taking a yearly weekend trip together that’s phone-free.”
“We’ve been doing this for a decade now.”
“These weekend trips consist of us staying in a suite and exploring the city, not traversing the wilderness, so it’s not like we’re completely disconnected.”
“Still, we liked to keep one on hand for navigation and emergency purposes, and it would usually be Friend’s phone that we brought along.”
“Friend and I left for our trip this year two Fridays ago to make use of the long weekend.”
“This was the first time I’ve gone one on of these trips since my wife and I moved in together, got engaged, or got married.”
“However, we were dating for the last two years worth of trips (2021 and 2022), and she seemed fine during that time.”
“I would just tell her I was going to be busy for the weekend and she’d leave me alone.”
“I understand that there are different expectations once you get married, but I didn’t expect the 180 in behavior.”
“My wife all but demanded I take my phone as well in case she needed to get ahold of me despite her having Friend’s number.”
“I let her know I had arrived and immediately after that she was texting me and asking me how things were.”
“Then again, asking me another question when I didn’t respond to the first one.”
“I eventually muted our text conversation because I was sick of the phone buzzing.”
“She called me a few hours later and asked why I wasn’t responding to her texts.”
“I reiterated that this was supposed to be a no-phone weekend and kept the call short despite her trying to drag out the conversation.”
“She called me once more after this.”
“When I answered and found out it wasn’t an emergency, I simply turned off my phone.”
“The calls then started coming in for my friend, and he followed suit.”
“We spent the rest of the weekend with our phones off until the drive back on Monday.”
“I called my wife and informed her when we were about 30 minutes away from my place, and she was furious.”
“She said that there ended up being an emergency (her sister got into a car accident that won’t affect her long-term, but still resulted in broken bones) and that I had just ignored her the entire time when she ‘needed me.'”
“I told her that I was very sorry to hear about her sister, but it wasn’t my fault she had essentially forced my hand into cutting off means of communication.”
“She went to stay with a friend before I arrived home that night and has since come home, but she’s still fuming.”
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 – Everyone Sucks Here
While the Reddit community initially agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for ignoring his wife’s call, their opinion changed after the OP disclosed more information in the comments section:
“He and I lived together from the time I was 18 until I was 24.”
“Some people might not think it was purely platonic, but I wouldn’t say anything explicitly sexual happened.”
“We shared a bed when we lived together, and because of the close quarters we lived in, we shared a routine.”
“A lot of the little traditions we have with people, even something as simple as setting aside a specific time every week to watch a show with them you don’t watch with anyone else or dinner-making rituals you might have, bond us together more deeply than we might anticipate.”
“Intentionally making space for someone in your life is impactful.”
Upon learning this information, the Reddit community all but unanimously agreed that the OP was indeed the a**hole.
Just about everyone felt that these trips that the OP was taking were not fair to his wife, with many feeling that the OP was being unfaithful, feeling that his friendship was clearly an intimate one, even if some felt that his wife’s behavior was uncalled for as well.
“I have the odd feeling that she almost wanted there to be an actual emergency so she could feel justified in bothering, and might have created one if it didn’t occur naturally.”
“She desperately doesn’t want you away from her.”
“You’ll need to have a serious conversation about that.”- ParsimoniousSalad
“AITA for continuing to cheat on my wife with the guy who groomed me when I was underage?”-DoASlowFloat
“You buried the lead on this for FOUR HOURS.”
“You shared an apartment AND A BED with your male ‘friend’ for FIVE years.”
“Coincidentally that year began immediately after the first of these annual trips.”
“I’m assuming this is real but the Brokeback analogies are strong, and the coyness raises my spidey sense.”
“If this had been a platonic relationship / roommate thing you would have had bunks a la stepbrothers (leaving the garage available for karate) or one of you would have converted the living room into a makeshift bedroom.”
“An 18 and 22-year-old dude pair would want space to bring home a partner, even a hook-up unless their partner was at home.”
“This was an unquestionably intimate (albeit not necessarily sexual) relationship that you’ve maintained in some form or fashion for a decade.”
“To top it off, you take a special vacation every year.”
“Whether you admit it or not, I’m sure you show a not-so-subtle preference for your ‘friend’ in a thousand ways, including your willingness to take phone calls at inappropriate times and your insistence on taking a ‘phone free’ getaway.”
“You claim your wife wouldn’t want these things, but it’s unlikely you ever asked.”
“You implied that you went from casual dating to married and living together in the space between the 2022 trip and the 2023 trip.”
“That’s a lot of relationship steps in 365 days.”
“I can only imagine that there was an ultimatum of sorts from either your wife or parents – or some other threat that your world would be upended.”
“Be honest with yourself and your wife.”
“Even if you don’t love your friend in a romantic way, you don’t value your marriage.”
“Unless it isn’t abundantly clear – YTA.”- ParisThroughWindows
“I’m gonna have to go with YTA.
“She’s definitely in the wrong for blowing up your phone, and it’s just a weekend.”
“If she was okay with it in the past, seems kind of odd she would be so upset over it.”
“But why does your trip need to be phone-free?”
“Not judging but there’s no real reason in the post to justify.”
“If you carry a phone for emergencies and navigation, it’s not phone-free anyway, you’re just not using your phone constantly, which I would assume is a given for most people when they’re traveling.”
“You shouldn’t be expected to drop everything and inconvenience your friend and the trip, but I don’t understand what harm comes from being available?”
“Like you even mentioned in the post, it’s not a wilderness retreat, you’re in a city.”
“I wouldn’t be okay with not being able to reach my husband for a whole weekend either if he was just out at bars, etc with friends.”- Little_Entrepreneur
“I was all ready to say NTA until I read the comments where you and your friend were much more ‘involved’ with one another than in a regular friendship or roommate situation.”
“OF COURSE your WIFE is feeling insecure about this.”
“Are you saying if she decided that she and an ex were ‘platonic’ now and she wanted to go off galavanting with them for a weekend without contacting you that you’d be cool with it?”
“Either your answer is yes, or you’re a total hypocrite here.”
“You’re off on a weekend getaway with an old flame that you have had not platonic but ‘not explicitly sexual’ relations with, shutting off your phone so your wife can’t contact you.”
“Hell, I’m surprised she married you when you went on these prior trips, hopefully she’ll be smart enough that she won’t be married to you before your next one.”
“YTA for your very obvious affair at this point.”- cryssylee90
It’s hard not to agree with the majority of the Reddit community that the OP’s wife is likely upset for reasons beyond her call not being answered.
It seems she is feeling like her husband might prioritize his friend over her and has many questions about the nature of their relationship.
Questions the Reddit community likely has themselves…