People can be forgetful, especially spouses.
Remembering every anniversary or small activity can be nearly impossible.
That can be a bone of contention in a relationship.
Forgetting a major milestone can be grounds for a break up.
That’s why some people create a system to help them out.
Case in point…
Redditor Even_Tangerine_4201 wanted to discuss their experience and get some feedback. So naturally, they came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.
“AITA: My wife discovered that I keep calendar reminders to ask her about stuff going on in her life?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“My wife has always been really good about staying aware of things happening in my life that I care about and periodically checking in with me to see how they’re going.”
“(You know – basic loving, caring partner stuff).”
“I have found that showing her that same consideration does not always come naturally to me.”
“I would say I am a fairly self-centered person.”
“I wish that weren’t the case, but in retrospect, a lot of bad behavior on my part was not corrected and even enabled when I was young.”
“By the time I realized this character flaw, I was already well into adulthood, and I have found that old habits die hard.”
“I don’t think I’m THAT bad.”
“Of course sometimes I DO remember that she was having that big meeting at work today or that her aunt was having surgery or whatever and I ask about it over dinner.”
“But more often than I am proud to admit, I get lost in my stuff and forget about hers.”
“So a couple of years ago I started setting reminders in my calendar so I wouldn’t forget.”
“Needless to say, I did not tell her I was doing this.”
“Until now, it’s worked really well.”
“Often I don’t even need the reminder – just creating it helps the event stick in my active memory.”
“But the other night, she saw one of my reminders.”
“(She has a potentially painful dental procedure later this week, For Your Information).”
“We both happened to be looking at something on my phone when it popped up.”
“Needless to say, she was surprised.”
“I had no choice but to explain the whole situation.”
“I wouldn’t say she thinks I’m a full-blown a**hole.”
“But she definitely found it weird and off-putting that I would need a system like that when she doesn’t and nobody else does.”
“I kind of agree with her.”
“It never felt like a deep dark secret, but on the other hand, there’s obviously a reason I never told her or anyone else I was doing it.”
“Still, taking action to make sure I show consideration and concern for stuff that matters to her has to be better than continuing to forget, right?”
The OP was left to wonder,
“Am I an a**hole?”
Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.
“NAH. I think it’s really sweet that you took the steps to help your wife feel valued.”
“I’d sit your wife down and let her know that this has helped you engage with her more and to learn more about how she’s feeling.”
“It’s not like you’ve scripted a conversation. You’ve just helped to ensure that you’ll actually have it.”
“Many couples don’t!” ~ beentherealmostdid
“Agreed with this, NAH.”
“I think you had great intentions and, honestly a good strategy for following through.”
“For the future, I’m not sure how you worded your reminders, but a reminder that just marks the date like ‘Jane’s big meeting’ looks less robotic than ‘Ask Jane about her big meeting.'”
“Telling her that you wanted to make sure to remember the important events in her life is sweet, whereas telling her you wanted to remember to ask about the important events in her life feels a bit odd.” ~ alpacabagg
“My memory is s**t.”
“I have a shared calendar with my husband so we can keep track of our lives.”
“I tell my Alexa to remind me to do things like pay my water bill.”
“He would be absolutely touched if I used the calendar to help me remember to ask about events in his life.”
“What you’re doing is wonderful.”
“Even being in a couple, it’s easy to become self-absorbed.”
“I’m sorry your wife is upset, but hopefully the replies on here will help you and her.”
“Good luck, OP!” ~ erin_bex
“I have A[ttention]-D[eficit] H[yperactivity] D[disorder], and I have to do things like this.”
“Nothing worse than forgetting that someone told you their pet died and asking if the pet is still around.”
“I have never wanted to trade places with a person’s pet more in my entire life.”
“NAH. You clearly love your wife and want her to feel that love.”
“And you do what you have to do to ensure that.”
“Nothing to be ashamed about.” ~ malinhuahua
“NTA… I’m autistic, and I sometimes find it difficult to maintain friendships and stuff because I just forget to ask them about their day.”
“If someone wants to talk to me about something, then obviously I’ll be engaged and listen to them, but I also have to remember to ask someone how they’re doing.”
“If anything OP’s wife should feel touched, bc if it’s something they struggle with, then it shows that they’re making an effort because they care about her.”
“OP if you read this then talk to your wife about your struggles, say it’s something that you find difficult and that leaving yourself reminders helps.” ~ Lili_Noir
“NTA – some people are just bad with dates and events.”
“And it’s always recommended that they try to figure out a reminder system.”
‘You did just that.”
“You may feel self-centered, but you actually go out of your way to make notes of stuff so that you can bring it up later.”
“You could just ignore it and laugh it off like many do that ‘It’s just how I am’ type of stuff.” ~ Ok_Job_9417
“I have a phone calendar that helps me remember the things for me and the other three people in my household (two being kids I have to schlep about often) as well as any relevant dog appts or things for the house/property as well.”
“I also have a household wall calendar so that my husband and both kids are able to write down any events and/or check schedules.”
“Because it’s hard to remember all these things without a calendar to look at!” ~ SimmingPanda
“1- you realized your flaw and took action to fix it.”
“2- if you didn’t care you wouldn’t be doing it.”
“3- even if you do remember, it’s not always the right time.”
“I remember a lot of things when I’m driving, making dinner, showering, or going to bed at night.”
“Those aren’t the times to write the email or check on whatever it was.”
“A reminder in the phone prompts you at times when these things can be addressed.”
“So while she might not like it, the fact is you are making an effort. NTA.” ~ Sunnyok85
“NTA. I feel like I always remember at the worst time, like something I need to text someone, but it’s 11 pm, so I need to remember in the morning, but that doesn’t always happen.”
“I will literally pack a bag I need for my day, put it right next to my keys at the front door, and two minutes later walk right by without grabbing it.”
“I also have a habit of not following through on conversations.”
“I am not diagnosed but suspect ADHD and/or autism, and when people try to chit chat with me, it just never occurs to me to ask questions back until later.”
“A co-worker will ask how my weekend was, I’ll tell them about it, and then just be like, have a great day!”
“Later on, I’ll think shoot, I should’ve asked how THEIR weekend was too.”
“I really don’t think it’s me being self-centered. Just in the moment, I don’t think to ask; I just answer their question.”
“I’m working on this but it’s tough because my brain just doesn’t think, ‘This conversation is a two-way street, I need to ask a question back.'” ~ cmajor47
“Honestly, I get why OP’s wife was surprised and even felt a bit weird about it at first.”
“I think I would feel the same way, and it would probably take a day or so to feel normal about it.”
“But I would hope when that wears off, she sees it as what it is; OP taking an action to help with a flaw he’s perceived in himself so that he can support her better, as you said.” ~ xxxdac
“NAH. I’m just going on a theory here, but you were probably told that you were self-centered when you were a kid, because you couldn’t remember things.”
“With your reminder system, it sounds to me like you’re neurodivergent and that someone mislabeled you in your childhood.”
“A self-centered person wouldn’t make those reminders.” ~ lydsbane
“Same. I have ADHD, and unless I’ve written it in 3 different spots and have it on my work calendar and my personal calendar, I’m going to forget.”
“I’ll even leave myself sticky notes to call my sister back or text a friend about something, so there is nothing wrong with using strategies and tools that work best for you.”
“OP is NTA for using a system that works best for helping him be more engaged in his relationship and it’s the exact opposite of selfish.” ~ candaceelise
“NTA. I wish my husband would do this.” ~ Expensive_Shower_405
Well, OP, Reddit is with you.
You’re doing the best you can.
Everybody needs a reminder now and again.
Especially as the years pass by.
Life can sometimes be too overwhelming, and the brain can only store so much.
Hopefully, she’ll come around and understand.