When we love someone, it’s likely that there’s very little we would do to make them happy.
But sometimes, we realize that our loved one doesn’t want the thing they thought they wanted, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor bcjskxnsjsi was surprised when his wife wasn’t excited about him agreeing with her to get a nose job, but prepared to ridicule him.
When she openly questioned his feelings for her, the Original Poster (OP) wondered what he could have said to her instead.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my wife she should get a nose job?”
The OP’s wife had troubling insecurities about her appearance.
“I (31 Male) love my (30 Female) wife, we’ve been married for 3 years, and there’s nothing I would change about her, except that she’s really insecure about her nose and that she gets aggressive over it when I try to comfort her.”
“For as long as I remember, she has always hated her nose and mentions it every day and when I would try to comfort her and tell her it’s beautiful and she doesn’t have to change anything, she would get aggressive and yell that I’m a liar.”
When the OP tried to be supportive in a different way, it backfired.
“2 weeks ago, she got a raise at her job, and today she suggested the idea of getting a nose job.”
“I said that if she’s that insecure about it to the point that it’s affecting her mental health, then she should get it done.”
“She got extremely upset over this and said that I should’ve said no to the idea.”
“She left the house to go to her mother’s, and I haven’t been able to get in touch with her since.”
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 said the wife was blaming deeper insecurities on her nose.
“My guess is that she’s so traumatized from her nose insecurities, that when OP supported HER suggestion of getting a nose job, she isn’t hearing support.”
“Instead, she’s hearing that OP also thinks her nose is ugly and that she would be prettier with a nose job, even though that’s NOT what OP is saying at all.”
“Did OP’s wife handle this situation maturely? No, of course not. But instead of attributing her behavior to malice, we may want to consider that her nose insecurities have her so messed up that she isn’t actually hearing what OP says, she’s just hearing her own insecurities.”
“She wants so desperately to be loved for who she is, but right now she does not believe anyone could possibly love her with her current nose.”
“Had this situation popped up out of nowhere, I’d agree and say yeah, she just wants to fight over something. But OP says this is a long-standing issue. He described it as a near-daily issue – to me that screams some VERY deep-rooted insecurities.”
“At this point OP’s wife just needs therapy – I don’t think there’s anything OP can say or do to actually fix this.” – chrystalight
“I mean, it’s not really about the nose at all. she thinks of herself as being unlovable, and she probably sees her nose as something unattractive, so she puts those beliefs onto the nose.”
“She could wake up tomorrow with a brand new nose and it wouldn’t change anything. she would probably be more upset that she still has the same feelings but without the obvious thing to blame them on.”
“She could probably use therapy more than a nose job.” – Redequlus
“It doesn’t seem to me like she’s looking for a reason, but I do have an explanation for the question of why. She does not love herself because of her nose, so she cannot fathom that her husband could possibly love her with the nose she hates. She’s angry because she can’t square the two.”
“She has two options… She either has to accept that she’s wrong for not loving herself with her nose because her husband does, or her husband is a liar because she’s right about her nose and he’s wrong. Which explanation is the easier one for her to choose?”
“Oh, and NTA.” – iheartalpinestars
“I have known a lot of people that did not like having their looks complimented because they did not like how they looked and assumed you had to be lying/playing them/patronizing them.”
“I’ve even fallen into this a bit in the past.”
“One day a potential partner actually looked at me and said, ‘Stop doing this mopey s**t, I’m not into the same s**t as you. You don’t have to want to do you for me to want to do you,” and for some reason, it was incredibly illuminating.” – DontHaesMeBro
“I don’t know about that. I guess she might be so insecure that she can’t believe that he really doesn’t care and loves her no matter how her nose looks. She had to deal with that issue as long as she’s conscious about her looks, maybe she was bullied because of that.” – Suspicious_Clerk499
“Dollars to donuts, this reaction is from intrusive thoughts that cause a visceral reaction against anything other than hating her nose. She has a need for reassurance, but she’s got cognitive mechanisms in place that make sure she doesn’t get it.” – NeitherBox6914
“I think this is something people who struggle with body dysmorphia and self-hate really lose sight of, that the way they talk about themselves truly hurts other people, too.”
“You insult the people who genuinely find you attractive. You make other people who may have a similar look feel like they should also hate how they look. You make others think, if this is how critical you are about yourself, you’re probably also very critical of how I look and just haven’t said anything.”
“You drain other people emotionally if you continue to ask for reassurance in a way that sets up everyone to fail and basically forces them to agree with the premise that x kind of body part is objectively bad so that they can counter your feelings with, ‘oh, but yours isn’t that bad.'”
“If someone can’t accept themselves, that’s ok and is the reality for most people due to so much external conditioning about what should be considered attractive. It’s just an issue of reframing how you speak to others about it out of concern for them, even if you can’t muster the same concern for yourself.” – scrapsforfourvel
Others wondered if the wife was just looking for a reason to be angry, though.
“If it were only about insecurity it doesn’t make sense for her to leave and go no contact.” – Liathano_Fire
“She doesn’t necessarily want to be angry with him. It might just be that she wants to outsource her insecurity. If she can convince herself that he hates her nose, it’s easier to avoid dealing with the fact that she hates her nose. It’s not healthy, but it’s not malicious.” – mbklein
“It seems that she is looking for a reason to be angry with him. That may be uncharitable, though. She may just be feeling insecure and took it out on him. Still, she needs to grow up.” – shadekiller0
“OP’s wife wants to be mad. The question is: why? If he can get that figured out with her, they can work on better communication. However, it seems like she really wants to pick a fight…” – teatimecats
“Not so much ‘be angry/mad’ with OP, but wants to verify her assumption that OP is bulls**tting her, and ‘really, deep in his subconscious hates me and thinks I’m ugly, just as I believe about myself!'”
“When he gives his truthful yet diplomatic answer, she refuses it, because, you cannot reason people out of beliefs they didn’t reason themselves into.” – Duke_Newcombe
“That’s the worst part about this post to be honest, is that OP is fine with how his wife looks, but when he tries to be comforting and supportive of his wife, she yells at him? Yeah, that’s kinda toxic if you think about it.” – Informal_Passion7975
“She’s probably not looking for compliments. I’m a person who has struggled my whole life with how I look, I have very prominent features (nose and chin), and it has taken me decades to accept that this is just the hand I got dealt.”
“I’ve never considered plastic surgery, but I can certainly understand people who do. But I’ve never been comfortable with compliments about my physical features, because my genuine immediate feeling is that they are lying to me.”
“I know what I look like, I own a mirror. While I certainly think OP’s wife has not handled any of this well, and she clearly needs to work through her stuff on her own, I also understand the reaction as soon as he agreed with her about plastic surgery is an option.”
“It probably just made her feel like he’d been lying all along (though I don’t believe that’s the case!)” – Ernie2y
“Yeah, this is weird. As someone who HATED my nose so much, I could barely talk about it and got a nose job, when I was in a financial position to do so my husband basically said the same thing, ‘I like you as is, but if it makes you feel better, do it.'”
“And instead of being mad at him, his response was a huge relief, because he didn’t make me feel selfish or self-absorbed or like it was a waste of money.”
“And I did it, and basically never thought about my nose again and lived happily ever after. Kidding aside, it’s amazing that something I was SO self-conscious about is a complete non-issue now.” – PrincessTroubleshoot
The subReddit was just as confused as the OP about why his wife had chosen to go silent and distant after this situation.
Assuming the OP was honest about how he handled the situation, their best guess collectively was that the wife was dealing with some deep-seated insecurities that seemed to be confirmed by the OP’s agreement for the surgery, though his agreement came from a positive place.