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Redditor Livid After Spouse Keeps Telling ‘Sob Stories’ About His Dead Dad On Their Dad’s Birthday

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A Redditor celebrated their dad’s birthday by bringing the family, including the Redditor’s husband, Joel.

Although Joel was there to take in the occasion at a restaurant, he was not in the mood to feel particularly celebratory.

He explained why he was feeling down, but his spouse’s reaction was one he was not hoping for.

Their argument led to Joel giving the Redditor the silent treatment, which prompted them to visit the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit, where they asked: 

“AITA for yelling at my husband for discussing his dad’s death on my dad’s birthday?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“Yesterday was my dad’s birthday, so me and my family took him out to dinner at a nice restaurant.”

“My husband, Joel, seemed a bit distant, but I didn’t talk to him about it so we wouldn’t ruin the mood for my parents.”

“On the way home from the restaurant, I asked him what was wrong. He said he missed his dad, who passed away about 2 years ago.”

“He explained that he couldn’t stop thinking about his dad. I let him talk to the kids about his dad for quite a bit.”

“I was getting sick of It, our children (Female 12 and Male 9) shouldn’t need to hear his sob story. I told him that’s enough talk about his dad and he apologized.”

“But when we were back at the house, I heard Joel talking to the kids about his dad again. I told him to stop, that the kids didn’t want to hear it.”

“Joel argued that his dad is the kids’ grandfather, so of course they want to hear about him. I told him it’s fine to tell stories about his dad, but that he’s taking it too far and that he’ll just make them depressed.”

“We argued for a bit (the details aren’t important), and in the end he accused me of being an a**hole.”

“I thought he’d get over it by next morning, but he isn’t talking much and I can’t help but feel it’s related to last night. I think he’s just being stubborn and overreacting, but I’m not sure. AITA?”

Strangers online were asked to declare one of the following:

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

A majority of Redditors were appalled for the OP’s lack of empathy.

“YTA: Holy sh*t, are you even listening to yourself? ‘I was getting sick of It, our children (F12 and M9) shouldn’t need to hear his sob story.'”

“You’re a real AH for not having any empathy for your husband when he was obviously missing his dad a bit and being reminded bc of the situation.” – DDecimal

“What kind of monster calls their SO’s parent’s death a sob story especially just barely 2 years ago when the parent has been around all their life?” – ThrowawayPeacemaker

“The ‘sob story’ part made me stop reading for a moment. Definitely YTA. Aren’t you his wife? What’s wrong with you.” – karnicbel

“YTA. Sob story??? His dad died only two years ago, your dad’s birthday is going to cause him heartache because he can’t celebrate his dad’s birthday with him anymore.”

“It’s cruel you lack the understanding that he’s still grieving and this event would cause him to grieve more. Instead of being understanding, you decide to heartlessly dismiss him whilst all he wants to do is share stories with your children to keep his father’s memory alive.”

“Your lack of empathy is astounding.” – OkBullfrog7875

“I mean, how is ‘AITA’ even a QUESTION here?! You are acting like a monster – not only are you denying your husband the chance to process with you, but trying to keep him from keeping his own father’s memory alive with his kids.”

“This is staggering to me. He didn’t even bring his grief to dinner – he let you celebrate and endured his pain alone, even though saying ‘wow, I’m so grateful for you, [OP’s dad], and it’s making me realize how much I miss my dad,’ would have so appropriate!” – AnnesleyandCo

“YTA. You’re super-insensitive. Your husband is grieving and you’re being an a**hole to him about it.”

“Also this:”

‘the details aren’t important.’

“I’m willing to bet those details are important and you’re leaving a lot out.” – TheUtopianCat

“Wow. 5 days into the year and already such a strong contender for AH of the Year? Impressive. I can’t even imagine being this callous to my life partner when he was expressing grief over his father’s death.”

“Calling it a sob story? If I were him I’d be rethinking the whole relationship. YTA, big time.” – LiveOnFive

“A week after my miscarriage my ex said, ‘are you still going on about that?’”

“That was the moment I knew I would leave him. Awful beyond the forgivable.”

“You sound just like him.” – peanutbutter-gallery

“YTA, and staggeringly heartless. Your husband missed his late father, and wanted to share stories about him with his kids, which is a lovely way to remember him and keep him alive in their memories, and you dismissed him and called him depressing.”

“I don’t know who broke you, but you need therapy and to apologise to your husband for being utterly lacking in basic human compassion.” – FoolMe1nceShameOnU

“There’s a huge lack of empathy here, obviously (just labelling her husband’s grief a ‘sob story’ – jeez). But there’s also something else.”

“I really think the OP is making a serious error in judgment when she’s assuming the kids wouldn’t want to hear about their grandfather. I don’t know if the OP mistakenly thinks kids can’t process loss or feelings of sadness in others, or if the OP is just projecting her opinions onto the kids.”

“But chances are the kids like hearing stories about their grandpa, even if they’re sad. And they probably like that their dad talks openly with them. It makes them feel closer to their dad and helps them process their own loss.”

“I wish my dad had talked more openly with me.” – K-no-B

Overall, Redditors remained aghast over the OP’s reaction and for downplaying Joel’s continued grieving process.

Many people also suggested that the OP’s lack of empathy and compassion for Joel was enough to be considered grounds for divorce.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo