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Man Sparks Drama By Calling His Wife’s Friend ‘Too Old And Ugly’ After She Aggressively Hit On His Teenage Son

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Double standards can cut both ways.

A father addressed double standards after he insulted his wife’s friend. The insult lead to a disagreement with his wife so he turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

But he didn’t get quite the reaction he wanted when Redditors pointed out his own double standards.

Redditor throwDad224 asked:

“AITA for telling my wife’s friend she is too old and ugly after she repeatedly asked my 19-year-old son to take off his shirt?”

The Original Poster (OP) stated:

“He was getting uncomfortable.”

The OP explained:

“My family had a small get together at my house. One of my wife’s friends was over (she is unmarried I think she is 45-47?).”

“We aren’t too close to her since she lives pretty far away. She was over our house and she started complimenting my son (my son is 19).”

“It starts off innocent, but as time goes on it gets more and more crossing the line.”

“When we were out on my deck she starts telling my son to take his shirt off, ‘whats the point of going to the gym if no one will see it?’. My son is visibly uncomfortable and tries to shut her down.”

“She repeatedly is asking and is getting more aggressive with it. I interject and I am like ‘Hey Kathy, I think you are a bit too old and ugly for my son’.”

“This got her upset really quickly, and she excuses herself to the bathroom and starts crying. My wife goes to comfort her, and then later she leaves.”

“At the end of it my wife is super angry with me for saying that, that I should have said hey Kathy looks like you had too much to drink or something else. I told my wife, that Kathy (btw this is not her real name) works a corporate job.”

“She has had training on this and that she knows better. And our son was uncomfortable.”

“He is 18+ but he doesn’t know how to deal with an adult-adult let alone someone saying that in our house.”

“I told my wife flat out that if I was to invite a guy friend and he was to ask to see our daughter in a bikini my wife would have called the police. She says its different.”

“I tell her that I was way kinder to Kathy than I would have been had a guy said something like that to our daughter. And I told my wife that Kathy needs to apologize to my son before she can ever come into our house again.”

“Overall, I think I was fair.”

“If Kathy just said it once and I said that, I think I would be the asshole, but the fact she kept repeating it that’s why I said it.”

“And I wanted her to get the message that yes, I am upset. That’s why I included the ugly part.”

Redditors then passed judgment on the OP, Kathy and his wife with the acronyms:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors were split between NTA because Kathy’s sexual harassment was unacceptable as was his wife’s excusing it, but the highest ranked responses opted for ESH.

“I’m gonna go against the grain here with ESH and I’ll tell you why. Calling out Kathy’s behaviour was absolutely the right thing to do… it set an example for your children, showed your son that you had his back and all kinds of good stuff like that.”

“But the problem wasn’t Kathy’s level of attractiveness. The problem was that she was sexually harassing your son (in his own home, no less!), irrespective of her appearance.”

“You called Kathy out and protected your son, but, if anything, you’ve perpetuated the double standard being discussed in the comments. The problem isn’t that an unattractive woman was hitting on your son, it’s that it was flat out sexual harassment.”

“By making it an issue about her appearance, you’ve completely sidestepped teaching your son a valuable lesson: his discomfort alone is enough reason to assert himself or seek help from you in shutting this stuff down in your own home.”

“He was wronged, you’ve just completely missed giving him the words to understand and explain exactly how.”

“Instead of calling Kathy old and ugly, you could have called her behaviour out as unwelcome and predatory. Your son needs to know that even if a young, attractive woman repeatedly made unwelcome advances towards him, it would still be just as wrong.”

“Otherwise you’re accidentally perpetuating the idea that, if it was a young and attractive woman, it would be welcome no matter what because (implicitly) men always want sex from anyone attractive enough.”

“That is antiquated and damaging bullsh*t. It also gives Kathy no reason to assess her behaviour, but I won’t really count that since teaching her not to be a predator shouldn’t be your job.” ~ CriticalFields

“I really want to say ESH. I don’t think that saying ‘hey Kathy, you’re old and ugly lol’ is the best way to go about this.”

“What would you have said if she was 30 years old & beautiful?”

“A better way of handling it would be to say something like: ‘Kathy, your behavior is crossing a line and needs to stop immediately. If you don’t stop then you will need to leave’.”

“A firm statement like that will get the point across just as well, without hurting anyone, and shows your son how to handle conflict like an adult.” ~ Georgejefferson19

“100% agree with this. It’s pretty shocking to imply that sexual harassment is only wrong when the perpetrator is old and unattractive.” ~ usernamesareso1998

“I understand the knee jerk reaction for people to vote NTA because it was a father protecting his child against sexual harassment. However, we need to get better at untangling attractiveness with consent.”

“By calling her old and ugly, he shifted focus away from her deplorable actions and instead suggested that it would somehow be okay if she was conventionally beautiful.”

“Sexual abusers can be any gender, age or level of attractiveness. It is never okay.” ~ specter_ghost_dog

“Yeah I’d go ESH with this. The only non-A is the son, who was being sexually harassed and that is never cool.”

“The point wasn’t this woman’s age/appearance, though, it was that her behavior was grossly inappropriate and stoooop. I don’t think it would’ve been cool to insult a man’s appearance if they were creeping on a teenager, either.” ~ cidvard

“I totally agree with this. I think it sets a bad example for both his children in how to shut down unwanted advances.”

“The example he is setting is that the correct way to shut down unwanted advances is to get angry and force a confrontation through name calling. Assuming the daughter was around, this could literally put her in danger down the line.”

“I give zero f’ks about Kathy’s feelings in this, it’s just the verbal insults were not necessary and send the wrong message to OPs own kids about the best way to handle this sort of situation in the future.”

“I do agree with OPs request that she apologize to the son before ever coming back (though I’m not sure I would ever let her come back.)”

“Also, why is OPs wife apologizing for this woman’s behavior?! I have a son and would likely never speak to this woman again if she did something like that to my son.” ~ snoogle312

The OP commented that if the woman were younger, his son would be on his own to handle the situation.

Redditors found his response unacceptable and let him know.

“If she was 20 and kept pressuring your son into something he didn’t want to do that’s still harassment. Which is why you shouldn’t have put the emphasis on looks/age but the bad behavior.” ~ mintardent

“Sorry man, I think this is the wrong take. It sounds like your son tried to set the boundary but she trampled over it. You were going to have to intervene anyway.” ~ Georgejefferson19

“The biggest reason I don’t really like OP doing it the way they did, is because they are specifically aware that their son doesn’t know how to handle this, so as a parent they should do their best to model ideal behavior that would be suitable in a more delicate situation.”

“I don’t care about sparing the offender’s feelings. I care about providing the best example for the son that he can use in other situations where he’s vulnerable.” ~ curien

“I think it’s more that age and looks were irrelevant to what the actual problem was. By bringing those topics into the situation, it muddies what the issue was.”

“If you had been directly to the point that the problem was her behavior (‘Stop sexually harassing my son. You need to leave now’ or even ‘Cut it out and get the hell out’) then there would have been no room for misinterpretation.” ~ abishop711

“Bad take. Some of the most aggressive sexual harassment I’ve gotten [was] from people [who] actually were younger and more attractive who had been taught that since they weren’t old and hideous, that of COURSE their attentions were welcome and reciprocated and [it was] not at all sexual harassment and would not take no for an answer… but it completely WAS because I did not consent and was not interested.”

“This totally reinforces the notion that it’s not sexual harassment if they’re young and hot. It absolutely is and can be just as hard to deal with as a 60 year old perv!”

“It’s actually been easier for me to shut those down because at least people believed me then that I wasn’t interested instead of ‘playing hard to get’.”

“The lesson here is to shut down any inappropriate, unwelcome attentions aimed at your teenage son.” ~ crystalzelda

But dad still remained obtuse and returned to defend himself against being judged the a**hole by asking:

“I have to be kind to people that sexually harass my children?”

But Redditors again tried to educate dad.

“You just said that you would have done nothing if your son had been sexually harassed by someone young and attractive. So yeah, you’re also TA.” ~ grimbaldi

“Did you come here to be judged or to reinforce your own opinion? Check the subReddit rules about arguing back.” ~ disco-bloodbath

“No, you don’t have to be kind to people who sexually harass your children.”

“A simple ‘Hey Kathy, f’k off and stop harassing my kid’ would have been both appropriate and impolite, and addressed her problem behaviour instead of insulting her age and appearance.” ~ vodka7tall

“I’d just like to add to these comments that your statement could reinforce to your son that consent isn’t the issue here. You made it about her age and appearance, and this behavior, once reinforced, can be repeated by your son.”

“Screw Kathy. Her feelings aren’t important, that’s not the issue.” ~ 4_Legged_Duck

“Nah dude, be as mean as you want. Her actions were predatory and I love that you stood up for your son.”

“However, I think you would come out of this with a better understanding of how much work we have to do as a society and as individuals if you focus on the larger issue that your choice of words highlighted.”

“The issue is that our society as a whole excuses sexual predatory behavior if the predator is closer in age to the victim and ‘hot’. Neither of those things should excuse dangerous behavior.”

“You saying she was [not] hot and too old for your son actually took the onus off her actions and put it onto her looks. When in reality it was her predatory ACTIONS that were inexcusable, not the way she looked.”

“I also understand being so angry in that moment seeing your son in such a vulnerable state. So if I were you, I would be proud of yourself for doing the right thing while simultaneously committing to put the onus on the predator’s actions and not how they look.”

“It may not seem important, but I argue that it is because think about all the people who see a [female] teacher rape a male student and say ‘well, she’s hot, lucky guy’. Like NO, he was raped, children can’t consent.”

“That’s why I think your words reflect a bigger societal issue but it doesn’t mean you have to be ‘nice’ to predators.” ~ ILoveTamales

“No, it’s not about being kind.”

“You made it about her looks and not what she was actually doing wrong. What you did suggests that if she was hot, it would be okay.” ~ RellenD

One Redditor told the dad to consider the results of his own actions versus what could have happened if he took the advice he was being given.

“Lets examine the outcome of your current course of action vs. not being a d*ck about it and responding with maturity.”

“Currently your wife is mad at you for being a jerk to her friend—whether deserved or not. Had you been more stern and mature rather than insulting, your wife would likely be more receptive to your comment and you’re more likely to be unified in defending your kid against sexual harassment.”

“It’s not about what Kathy deserves or doesn’t deserve, it’s about choosing actions that have the best possible outcome for yourself and your family.” ~ ElGrandeQues0

Whether or not he ever figured out why people took exception to his response is unclear. Dad didn’t return with any updates nor ever acknowledge the point people kept trying to make to him.

A young, attractive person sexually harassing someone is also not acceptable behavior. Teaching his children that lesson should have been more important than the thrill he got from calling Kathy old and ugly.

Written by Amelia Mavis Christnot

Amelia Christnot is an Oglala Lakota, Kanien'kehá:ka Haudenosaunee and Metís Navy brat who settled in the wilds of Northern Maine. A member of the Indigenous Journalists Association, she considers herself another proud Maineiac.