We don’t all have the same background knowledge on pregnancy, we can all understand that it’s a serious feat trying to grow a little human.
But when other conditions arise, like gestational diabetes or preeclampsia, then there are all kinds of other worries the pregnant woman will suddenly have, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
While visiting his mother overseas, Redditor HazzardBlue thought that his wife was being a little too overbearing, despite dealing with gestational diabetes.
But when his wife went so far as to worry that his mother was trying to sabotage her health, the Original Poster (OP) may have not responded in the kindest way.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my wife that she is being small-minded and harsh because she is interpreting my mother’s words maliciously?”
The OP’s wife was struggling while pregnant and traveling overseas.
“My wife has gestational diabetes due to being pregnant. We are visiting my family overseas.”
“She has specific dietary requirements to help her control her blood sugar level, one such requirement is to substitute white rice with alternative rice types. We come from a rice-eating culture.”
The OP’s wife and mother had different dietary preferences and needs.
“While overseas, my mother is in charge of the meals and often buys and preps alternative rice for her.”
“During a meal today, this conversation came up:”
“Mom: ‘I usually just buy half a kilo of alternative rice.'”
“Sister: ‘Half a kilo is a lot! But then I guess everyone can have it at the same time.'”
“Mom: ‘Yeah, that means I don’t have to specifically cook rice for someone.'”
“My wife took offense to this and thinks my mother is having a go at her.”
“I’m obviously thinking my mother just means it’s easier to have everyone eat the same rice, rather than having to cook for any specific person.”
The OP’s wife was concerned about her mother-in-law’s respect for her diet.
“They previously had beef. My mother is aware of my wife’s condition and also aware that she needs alternative rice, for about a week she would provide alternative rice on and off, add small bits of sugar into my wife’s porridge for breakfast, and once bought alternative rice but paired with something really bad for her condition.”
“This led my wife to think that my mother is intentionally sabotaging her diet.”
“I of course think these actions can be considered dumb, but hardly malicious. I think my mother wouldn’t intentionally harm her, if only because it would also harm the baby.”
“Another point of frustration is that once I told my mother is provide alt. Rice every meal and stop sneaking sugar. She immediately rectified these issues and my wife’s blood sugar is well managed now, which my wife thinks proves my mother’s maliciousness as it wasn’t hard to do, why didn’t she do it beforehand?”
The OP lashed out at his wife.
“We had an argument over my mother’s rice comment, where I ended up calling my wife, amongst other things… small-minded. I said she has no ability to let things slide and hates my mother so she then interprets things in the most malicious way possible.”
“We are both very frustrated… Please give your opinion; maybe it’s my fault for not stressing the dietary requirements hard enough…”
“Am I the a**hole here? Or is my wife extra sensitive, maybe due to being pregnant?”
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 couldn’t understand why the OP’s wife was so upset.
“NTA. It sounds like your wife is a crybaby. If it’s such a big deal, can she not cool her own d**n food? Or can you not cook her meals? Why should your mom cook stuff no one likes but your wife? Your mom shouldn’t have to cook special meals for her that should be your job or your wife’s.”
“I’d b p**sed if I was having to make special meals or even cooking something no one likes but her when they are perfectly capable of doing it their selves. Your mom could look at your wife wrong and she would throw a fit.” – LongjumpingHealth375
“I honestly do not see how anyone could take offense to what your mother said. Even if she was referring to your wife… so what?”
“With the sugar incident, the fact that your mother stopped as soon as you talked to her indicates that it was an innocent mistake. I don’t understand why your wife would think that her stopping is evidence it was malicious; it’s evidence of the opposite.”
“NTA.” – Rivka333
“It doesn’t sound like your mom is being intentionally malicious, or that your wife is being crazy. This is a vulnerable time for her and she’s probably really stressed. You’re NTA but I think you could help try to smooth the waters between them and help negotiate common ground!” – MeasurementRare2139
“I didn’t get any weird vibes from the story, sounds innocuous enough. Especially if the issues were corrected when you brought them up and didn’t come back.”
“People with health conditions live and breathe them every day. There’s no escape and no forgetting, especially when it’s do-or-die. And it can be easy to forget that not everyone lives under these conditions and can forget some important aspects of it.”
“Can’t have some ingredients because you’re allergic or have a condition? Cool, I didn’t put any of that in. But then you find out they didn’t check all the ingredients of the sauce and it sets you off. That is easily not malicious, they just weren’t as thorough in their actions because they don’t need to be 24/7 like someone with a condition. They’re not used to that particular type of discipline.”
“And with that said NTA. You really should have a talk with all three like adults; with as few accusations as possible.” – TooCool_TooFool
“She is a little over-sensitive, and she’s pregnant, and her body keeps doing things like wacky hormones. Her back hurts most likely, and her feet are swollen. However, from what you explained, she felt like your mom was calling her out for making more work.”
“If this was a one-time thing, talk to your mom and ask her to be a little more sensitive. You need to tell your wife you are sorry for saying hurtful things. For the love of Pete, she is growing a human and now has to eat different foods because of said child.”
“Maybe spend some extra time or get her a treat she can have. Remind her it’s temporary. After she has the baby buy her favorite food a bunch of them so NTA mostly if you do all the stuff in post. Don’t forget to thank your mom for her help and understanding.” – Left-Willingness-887
But others felt the OP needed to listen to his wife more.
“YTA. Stop playing dumb and read what you wrote. You make so many excuses for your mom. If she knew beforehand about the condition, but still sneaked things here and there until you put a stop to it, what does that mean? She’s not an id**t but a malicious MIL.”
“I would have voted NTA at first because her words could’ve been misinterpreted, but boy oh boy, your info about their earlier ‘beef’ is literally slapping you in the face but you’re still deluding yourself into believing in good intent. Support your f**kng wife.” – scythelover
“Umm, what? Adding sugar and serving food not included in the diet to someone with gestational diabetes is a deliberate act. You don’t accidentally add sugar to something. YTA for being dismissive of your wife’s legitimate concerns regarding her health and her pregnancy.” – Heloise_Morris
“YTA. You didn’t think to start off with the fact your mother could’ve seriously harmed your wife by putting sugar in her food?”
“Also, ‘I think my mother wouldn’t intentionally harm her, if only because it’ll also harm the baby.’ IF ONLY?! So your mother would hurt her otherwise?” – ultimateweather
“You said all of this… to your pregnant wife?? You’re either really brave or really stupid.”
“YTA for not taking the fact that she’s pregnant (with all the crazy hormones that come with it) into account and dealing with your wife in a more understanding way. You verbally attacked her instead of trying to help her see that she may have taken what was said out of context.”
“Your mother knows your wife has gestational diabetes and must stay on a strict diet and yet she was putting sugar in your wife’s porridge? Honestly, I’m having a hard time seeing this as anything but malicious.” – IamIrene
“So watching my parents trying to accommodate my sister’s diet, which she’s on to prevent migraines, parents make mistakes even when they want to adhere to a person’s diet. And my sister’s diet isn’t complicated, it’s basically just vegan and gluten-free. But my mom talks to her while she shops or cooks to double-check that everything is fine.”
“Is your mom doing that? Is she asking your wife, ‘Can you eat sugar in your porridge?’ If she’s not, that’s probably why your wife is feeling offended.”
“Her comment, ‘That means I don’t need to specifically cook rice for someone’ is generally a dig at the ‘someone.’ That way I don’t have to cook two different rice dishes’ is neutral. So the question here is whether your mom speaks English fluently enough to have intentionally slighted your wife or whether she just wasn’t aware of how her words could be interpreted.”
“But the question isn’t whether your mom is the a**hole, it’s whether you are.”
“Your wife is pregnant, has a scary illness, is probably away from family and friends, and when she brought her feelings of rejection to you, you called her ‘small-minded.’ She genuinely could be misinterpreting your mother’s actions (and you need to consider that she may not be), but her feeling of rejection is real. It’s valid.”
“Don’t gaslight her. You can explain it’s just the culture, explain that you don’t think your mom is hurting your wife’s feelings intentionally, but don’t tell her that her feelings mean she’s small-minded. She’s already feeling attacked and the only person she has to go to add to the insult. YTA.” – MyFaceSaysItsSugar
“Simply because I read your mother’s comment as a follow-on from your wife’s comment. It can also be seen as an inclusive comment so that your wife isn’t singled out. So your mother may be being nice.”
“Now I will take all of that back if your mother actually isn’t that nice to your wife and there are a lot of barded comments that you either don’t notice (because you are so used to them) or she says when you aren’t around to hear them.”
“Sometimes all it takes is some education and your mother may not have realized that her usual habits were increasing your wife’s sugar intake.”
“Also, bear in mind your wife’s hormones may make her a little more unsettled. She’ll also be a bit uncomfortable as she gets bigger. She may also feel a bit judged if she doesn’t really know your mother (esp if they haven’t spent much time together as you live in different countries) so is a bit sensitive.”
“How pregnant is she if you’ve traveled overseas and she’s already diagnosed with gestational diabetes or is this a very new diagnosis? Many airlines don’t like you flying after 32 weeks but it does depend on how far you have to travel. There’s overseas… and there’s overseas.”
“You need to listen to your wife and let her vent her frustrations and fears to you. They may be valid. She actually might just need a caring ear to listen to her fears rather than being brushed off. There may also be some truth in her comments so definitely don’t automatically dismiss what she says.” – KitchenDismal9258
The subReddit was torn over how the OP’s wife was reacting to the OP’s mother’s actions, but they felt that the OP was being too hard on his wife, especially while pregnant and dealing with gestational diabetes.
It was clear, though, if this visit was going to work out, the relationship between the women needed to be repaired, and it was clear the OP was the key to making that happen.