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Woman Accused Of Ruining SIL’s Birthday By Storming Out After Kids Hide Her Glasses As ‘Prank’

woman cleaning her glasses
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When everyone laughs, it’s a good prank.

But when someone cries, is traumatized, injured or angry? That’s usually not a prank—it’s deliberate cruelty.

Some people seem unable to understand what is or isn’t a good prank. Like stealing and hiding someone’s medical assistive device—hearing aid, wheelchair, glasses, cane—isn’t remotely funny.

A woman dealing with a family member who thinks leaving someone panicked and effective blind for hours turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for feedback.

Own-Kangaroo6931 asked:

“AITA for ruining my sister-in-law’s (SIL’s) birthday dinner because she encouraged her kids to pull a prank?”

The original poster (OP) explained:

“My husband and I (38, female) went to my SIL’s house for her birthday. It’s quite a long drive and so we drove up the day before and stayed overnight in their spare room—the birthday meal was going to be in the afternoon.”

“She (42) has two boys aged 4 and 7. We live a few hours from SIL’s house.”

“Husband and I went in separate cars as we were coming from different work places and at different times to go there. We went the night before so we wouldn’t have to get up early and do the long drive first thing.”

“I am very short-sighted and literally can’t see 1 foot in front of my face without my glasses.”

“Every night I take them off and put them on the nightstand right where I know I can reach them in the morning.”

“Now, apparently, SIL thought it would be a funny prank to get her kids to sneak into the room around 7am and take and hide my glasses. I sleep with earbuds in because husband is a loud snorer—7am you could have paraded an elephant through the room and we wouldn’t have woken up.”

“On the morning of her birthday, I couldn’t find my glasses on the nightstand. I had to ask my husband to help (in case they had fallen off and under the bed or something) but we couldn’t find them anywhere.”

“I’m not blind, but the world is just a blur from about arms-length or less without glasses, so I can function a bit to get dressed, etc… just not do anything useful and it’s a pain in the a$$.”

“My husband looked for the glasses. But I didn’t do much in the morning because I just sort of sat and was upset about how I’d get to the restaurant, order or eat, how I’d get the car home etc…”

“I wasn’t of any use in actually looking for my glasses, for obvious reasons.”

“We looked in the obvious places, which, to be fair, was next to the bed because they’re the last thing I take off before turning out the light.”

“It would be f*cking weird for them to be in the kitchen or somewhere because how would I have got upstairs?”

“I was really distraught because as I said, I’m almost nonfunctional without them. Husband helped me down to breakfast and I explained that I wouldn’t be able to take part in the meal at the nearby restaurant and couldn’t drive myself home.”

“I was really upset. They are also expensive glasses because I have to get the lenses thinned etc… so about £600.”

“I had a huge ugly cry in the bathroom when we couldn’t find them and I thought I wouldn’t be able to drive home”

“SIL let this go on until they were literally about to leave for her birthday lunch that afternoon.”

“I’d not been able to do much at all up until this point because *I CAN’T SEE* then she jokingly said to her kids, ‘OK, that’s enough I think, go get them’ and the kids ran off to fetch my glasses from where they’d hidden them.”

“She said not to blame them at all (I don’t-ish) because it was her idea and just a bit of harmless fun.”

“I put my glasses on as I cried and walked out, got in my car, said nothing at all and just drove home. My husband is on my side and has apologised on SIL’s behalf saying that she thought I would see the funny side.”

“He is very apologetic and offered to skip her birthday meal as well and come home. But HE is being apologetic. Not her.”

“I’ve had nothing from SIL except for an angry Whatsapp message to the group—not directly to me but to the family group—saying that her birthday had been ruined because ‘someone’ couldn’t take a joke.”

“Apparently after I left she had a meltdown about how the day was ruined because I drove off and the kids were upset.”

“My husband is with me but isn’t necessarily calling her out on it in a major way, just saying it wasn’t me being the AH and that what she did was mean.”

“Kids are just upset that *I* was upset.”

“They didn’t know what they did wrong because their mum told them to do it and for them it was fun.”

“SIL’s husband notoriously stays out of everything, I have no f*cking clue what his thoughts on the matter are because I didn’t see him for the whole time.”

“She still seems to feel it was amusing AF for me to stumble around all morning in a panic for hours. We got up around 8am, lunch was scheduled for 2pm.”

“I stumbled around with my husband trying to find my glasses for about 5 hours before she told the kids to go retrieve them.”

“It is genuinely distressing for me to *not be able to see* but I guess I understand how she might have thought this would be funny to get her kids to do.”


The OP added:

“I feel bad that the kids think they are the reason I was upset or that they did something wrong. It has only been a couple of days and I’m still working out how to contact the kids.”

“I’m not great with communication in person especially when upset, so when they finally gave me my glasses back I just wanted to leave without any comment.”

“As I was driving home, I didn’t give a sh*t about possibly upsetting SIL, but thought how the boys would feel. Husband messaged me as I was driving back and when I stopped for fuel I read that the boys were upset because they did something wrong.”

“That is when he asked if I wanted him to come home as well.”

“It was 100% an attention-seeking thing.”

“SIL has done this in other ways in the past just more like a ‘me, me, me, everything is about me!’ thing rather than directly targeting someone and involving her kids, at least as far as I know.”

“I only see her a couple of times a year, but I know she loves attention.”

“She is still awaiting the apology from me for ‘storming out’ of her birthday right as she was about to go for the meal. I literally walked out in silence.”

“I’m really not good at conflict! It was easier to walk away and then have the conversations about how I f*cked up or not with random strangers here.”

“My silent walking away pissed her off more I think. I think she was wanting a loud and angry reaction.”

“But I just got my things, got in my car, and drove off without saying a single thing to her. Hence the angry Whatsapp post from her that I was TA—I think she was expecting more drama and I was disappointing.”

“I know I should have been more mature, but I was just so upset, mainly because I knew I’d been looking like an idiot all morning not being able to see. And the kids are giggling, of course, because they’d been told by SIL that it was all just fun.”

“I was seriously not OK all morning.”

“Hence why I just left. Afterwards (of course) my brain kicked in and said all of the things I SHOULD have said, but at the time I just walked away.”

The OP summed up their situation. 

“I cried and then left my SIL’s birthday before her meal because she got her kids to pull a prank on me.”

“I might be the AH because it spoiled the day for her and also upset her kids because she was the one to get them to pull the prank (stealing and hiding my glasses), so I made them feel bad by being upset when it wasn’t their fault.”

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

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

Redditors unanimously declared the OP was not the only a**hole (NTA).

“NTA. Personally, I’m not a fan of practical jokes in most circumstances. They often seem cruel and unkind.”

“This circumstance is no exception. You handled the situation very well, in my opinion.”

“I would’ve been hard pressed to remain civil after someone watched me visibly and obviously struggle for 5 hours when they could have quickly fixed it.”

“Not to mention your SIL having the audacity to get b*tthurt when you didn’t appreciate it, and try to claim it was a joke.”

“SIL owes you an apology. Not that you’ll get a genuine one based on her reaction.” ~ RedHand93

“NTA. I don’t see how this is a prank and supposed to be funny, but maybe if she let this go on for 10 minutes, some would see the humour in it.”

“But to let it go on for hours is ridiculous. And then to top it off—she didn’t even apologize.”

“It also seems strange to get the children involved. If it was their idea it would be one thing, but she recruited her children to play a ‘prank’ that wasn’t even funny.”

“This is a case of play stupid games, win stupid prizes.” ~ s4febook

“NTA. You are almost literally blind without your glasses. SIL sat there and watched you struggle through breakfast and then hours afterwards and finally relented.”

“She’s cruel. Very cruel. Time for you and husband to severely limit contact with her.”

“Your husband, not you, needs to respond very strongly and angrily about what she did.” ~ KronkLaSworda

“I would definitely respond to the sister’s crying post with something like ‘I am SO SORRY for ruining your birthday because I am blind without my glasses, literally legally blind’.”

“‘After watching me struggle and cry because my expensive medical device—my glasses!—were missing, a decent person would have returned them and stopped this inhumane ‘prank’ after 5 minutes, not waited 5 hours’.”

“Also let people know it’s her bad behavior that caused this as she is the one who told her children to do it and it would be funny.” ~ Bitchee62

“I am the same amount of blind as you. NTA, it’s a medical device no different than a prosthetic arm. A prank is only funny if everyone laughs.”

“Your SIL is totally in the wrong here and no wonder she didn’t put details in her message cause ‘my birthday is ruined because SOMEONE got upset we stole her glasses and let her wander around blind then waited until she was crying to laugh and reveal we stole them’ doesn’t hit the same way.” ~ Fullondoublerainbow

“I think the facts of why OP left should be posted by her husband in the family Whatsapp: ‘Well sis you had your children steal my wife’s glasses who can barely see without them. We then spent 5 hours in a panic searching’.”

“‘Then you give the glasses back right before it was time to leave for your dinner. Of course she left your house and skipped your meal! What kind of person thinks stealing a medical device is even remotely funny‽‽’.” ~ Super_Reading2048

How the OP addresses this incident is as yet undecided.

But at least they know Reddit is on their side.

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.