It’s really hard to discover some big secret that one of your loved ones has been keeping.
It’s even worse when they try to keep up the charade around other people, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor aitaliarliar told off her husband after he acted like he understood what their financially distraught friend was going through, even though he had been hiding the fact that he had a trust fund.
When this caused an argument, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she took it too far.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my husband that pretending to be poor didn’t mean that he knew what it was really like?”
The OP found something out after she got married.
“When I met my husband, he made it seem like he was like every other broke person in their 20s trying to survive in the world, with no parents or family to help him out.”
“He was crashing on his friend’s couch and living ‘paycheck to paycheck.'”
“I only found out after we got married that it was all just an act and that he was a trust fund kid who had been rebelling against his family and playing at being poor.”
This resurfaced when a friend came into financial trouble.
“Recently, one of my old friends and her family became homeless. I was telling my husband because I wanted to donate to the GoFundMe a mutual friend had set up for her.”
“He was sympathetic towards her, but then he started talking about how being homeless and barely getting by was one of the hardest things he had been through.”
“Admittedly, I got upset because we both know he wasn’t struggling.”
“He had a trust fund that was giving him a monthly allowance large enough for him to live without working. He was only choosing not to use that money.”
This led to an argument.
“I called him out on it and told him that him pretending to be poor didn’t mean he actually understood what true poverty was like.”
“My husband argued that he did, and we ended up fighting over it, and now he’s angry at me.”
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 agreed with the OP and said the husband had a security net.
“This is appalling. I grew up poor and spent most of my 20s broke. It doesn’t go away, ever.”
“Yes, I’m fine now, but I still plan like the economy is going to collapse at any time.”
“I will never forget what it’s like to walk to the store in the rain with change in my pockets and try to come up with dinner plans. Walking miles to work because the bus is too expensive. Just having to have 3 jobs. Being unable to pay for life saving prescriptions, ie EpiPen.”
“It stays with you. I am beyond grateful for what I did have and I know my life could have been a lot worse.”
“OP, tell your husband to shut up. Immediately. He doesn’t have any idea what he’s talking about. NTA” – GoodNightGracie999
“He chose that lifestyle, knew that if he really needed money, resources, support, etc., he had it available easily.”
“He doesn’t know what it’s like to lack a plan B, where if something falls through, there’s nothing under it. If he had to sever himself from his trust fund, he’d back out in a heartbeat.” – ScorchieSong
“NTA. True poverty is something I’d wish on no one.”
“Your husband had a safety net and he knew it. He has no idea what it feels like to truly have nothing to fall back on. He’s the AH and needs a reality check.” – cinnamon_gin
“A fallback plan makes all the difference.”
“It’s one thing to live paycheque to paycheque with zero fallback plan; it’s another thing entirely to do that knowing you have a huge amount of money at your disposal the moment you need it.”
“‘The hardest thing he’s ever done’ makes it sound like he needs to experience some hardship if he’s going to ever relate to anyone on a meaningful level who isn’t a trust fund kid. NTA.” – lelawes
Others said they’d be furious to find out about the trust fund.
“I was eating leftovers from the children’s tray at work (daycare) one summer. I always offered to take the tray back to the kitchen so I could cram the scraps in my mouth if nobody was there, instead of throwing them away.”
“I worked 40 hours a week on minimum wage – after rent, bills, and gas, there wasn’t enough money left to afford two full meals a day.”
“I’d be furious at a trust fund kid trying to spin their tales of hardship to me when they were only playing poor to p**s off Mommy and Daddy.” – boudicas_shield
“NTA. Even if he didn’t have the trust fund, in what universe is staying on friends’ couches and living paycheck to paycheck the same as sleeping under an overpass in the winter?”
“Couch surfing and paycheck to paycheck is called being in your 20s.”
“To clear up any confusion, take him to Denver, CO in the autumn. Let him see all the actual homeless people living on the street.”
“Then come back after winter and see how many are still there. It won’t be many and hint: it’s not because they left for their summer home. They’re staying at the county morgue.” – Salty-Dig-8406
“Jack London tried twice to live as a poor person in Whitechapel in the 1890s. Both times, he said it was too difficult and too demoralizing.”
“London did this in an effort to raise awareness of how desperate and terrible life was in the Whitechapel slums, as many people back then pretended they had no idea…”
“Maybe have your husband read his account. Or maybe take him to some ‘homeless’ charities and have him work 8 hours a day both weekend days for a few months.” – AfterPaleontologist5
The OP wondered if she was wrong for having this argument with her husband, but the subReddit insisted it was a fight worth having.
Because her husband was privileged and insisted on “sympathizing” with someone’s financial struggles, he clearly needed a swift reality check into what their friend’s life could look when compared to his.