As adults, we all know that accidents are going to happen, and most of us are mature enough to admit that sometimes we’re going to be the ones to blame.
One guy wasn’t ready to accept that, though, on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor No_Assistance_1828 thought that he reacted appropriately when an event happened in his home.
But when his girlfriend didn’t put up with it, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he overreacted.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for getting upset when my girlfriend nearly started a kitchen fire?”
The OP invited his girlfriend to move in.
“I am 30 [male] homeowner. I had been with my girlfriend, 25 [female] for about 8 months when we decided to try living together.”
“So we had been living together for 2 months when this happened. We both work full-time and she’s also in grad school.”
“She is extremely scatterbrained, absent-minded, and messy.”
But the OP was angry after she made a mistake.
“She was cooking soup on the stove and apparently went in the other room to do homework, and at some point, she fell asleep on the sofa.”
“So when I got home, I walked into the kitchen, and most of the water had boiled off the soup and it had started smoking.”
“I will describe both my reaction and her reaction as accurately as I possibly remember, whether it makes me look like an a**hole or not. Because I want to get an honest answer on whether or not I was an a**hole.”
“I was infuriated because we live in an area that has forest fires, I almost lost the house I grew up in because of a forest fire, and it could potentially cause devastation. So when I saw what was going on, I started yelling.”
“I yelled at her until she woke up. I said, ‘What the fuck do you think you are doing?'”
“She said she didn’t mean to fall asleep.”
“I said, ‘You almost burn my house down and you think ‘I didn’t mean to’ is an okay excuse?'”
“She said she was sorry and I said that didn’t cut it.”
“I said from now on, if she wants to use my kitchen, she’s not allowed to leave the room while there is a flame going on the stove.”
“She said she did not like being talked to like a child.”
“I replied, ‘Act like a child, get treated like one.'”
The OP’s girlfriend didn’t appreciate this.
“That was the last thing I said, and I saw an instant change come over her.”
“She left the room went to go clean up in the kitchen.”
“After a few minutes, I felt sorry and went to help her clean up, and she said it was fine she’d take care of it.”
“I went in the bedroom to get changed, and after a few minutes, I saw her car pulling out and her leaving.”
“I was glad she left because I was still pretty angry, so it would give us some time where we didn’t have to look at each other.”
The OP then wondered if he reacted appropriately.
“Night came and I didn’t hear from her. I texted and then called to see if she was okay, but there was no reply.”
“I then started calling some of her friends and family members.”
“Then I got a call from her stating she was okay and asked me not to contact her family members.”
“I went to sleep, got up, went to work, and came home. When I came home from work, all of her things were gone.”
“I tried to call her, and I was blocked on every form of communication.”
“I haven’t heard from her since then, and it was several weeks ago.”
“What I’m wondering is, was I really such an a**hole to justify that kind of brutal reaction?”
“I think anyone who had their house almost burned down would be upset.”
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 did not appreciate how the OP talked about his girlfriend.
“The way he described his ex-girlfriend makes me glad she left. That is very telling, how a person talks about their partner.”
“OP shouldn’t be with anyone until he gets some serious anger management therapy, but honestly, that girl deserves better than being talked down to.”
“He also makes every excuse in the book for himself but tries to spin it like she shouldn’t have accidentally fallen asleep while cooking (true but s**t happens) so she deserves to get yelled at and berated?”
“Why couldn’t OP wake her up calmly to have a conversation and make a new rule about not leaving the kitchen with the stove on, and a timer on her phone should be set for food in the oven?” – gulsangfugl
“My first thought was ‘way to let her know you see it as a landlord/tenant arrangement.’ The dude treats her like a child, lets her know the property is more important to him than her safety, and that he’s going to be controlling when he feels ‘justified’ in doing so.”
“Good for her. Hope she stays away from this guy.” – Go_easy_on_me_folks
“I still can’t believe that his primary reason for being upset was ‘you could have ruined my house’ instead of ‘you could have killed yourself.'”
“As much as I care about my house and my things, I care about my loved ones more.” – oldmanpuzzles
Others thought the OP was totally wrong in how he handled the situation.
“The second I saw grad school AND a FT (full-time) job, I knew what happened to ‘almost burn the house down.’ The woman is tired and probably a little stressed, it happens especially for someone working essentially 2 full-time jobs.”
“I’d love to see OP work as much as she is and think he wouldn’t just pass out accidentally. I’m proud of her for knowing her worth.”
“I fell asleep baking an apple pie for Thanksgiving after working constant 65+ hour weeks. I was so upset the crust was overbaked and burnt in some spots that I almost cried.”
“My husband told me it was barely noticeable AND he made a point of mentioning to his family I was worried about having ruined dessert by falling asleep while baking it.”
“When I came in the room, I was thanked for bringing it, since they know how busy I am, and that it was delicious. THAT is what a good significant other should do.” – crystalnoellyn
“And the ‘I saw an instant change come over her’ equals ‘I said something that totally f**ked me over.'”
“But it was a rash statement, a stupid and rash statement. You should have apologized immediately, sincerely, and profusely. Good luck.” – effyoucreeps
“‘Geeze, be careful next time,’ and this whole situation doesn’t happen.”
“I’d leave too if I were her. OP sounded like a parent scolding their kid, not someone talking to their partner.” – IceDragon77
“It sounds to me like your girlfriend didn’t appreciate being talked down to, insulted, and screamed at for making a mistake that nearly all of us have done at some point.”
“Yes, it could have been disastrous — but it wasn’t. Your house didn’t burn down, nor did it even come close to that. Not once were you concerned with her safety or that she could be hurt. You berated her for something that didn’t even happen — but could have happened.”
“She set her boundary, made a choice, and decided that a relationship wasn’t worth it. It isn’t a brutal reaction — it’s one that clearly defines that she doesn’t want to be in a relationship with someone who responds to her the way that you did.”
“She apologized to you, and it wasn’t good enough.”
“She has returned the same courtesy.” – TheLinguistalRooster
One Redditor offered a thorough description of issues they saw in the relationship.
“This is exactly why people say, ‘When a person shows you who they really are, believe them.'”
“Op WAY overreacted. I’m a home cook myself, and I’ve done this before too. It doesn’t take much for water to evaporate too quickly in a soup and for a pan to burn. Usually, it takes a lot for them to ‘catch on fire’ though. Not like his GF (girlfriend) put paper towels in the oven or tin foil in the microwave!”
“And he even said: they both work full-time, and she ALSO goes to school. And yet she still cooks for OP, can you blame her for dozing off? It’s why you have a partner to be there just in case, and a fire alarm ffs (for f**k’s sake)!”
“She was likely overworked and exhausted, and made a mistake, so he crucified her ON the stake! She even legit apologized, but ‘it wasn’t good enough.’ What is good enough, OP? A grounding or spanking? Pleading for forgiveness?”
“Because she was scolded like she was a bad kid. If this is how he reacts to her making a mistake, even if she is owning up to it and being sorry, what about the rest of their life? If she gets in a car accident, breaks an object, or worse? Will she have to apologize for everything? Ask permission just to cook?”
“As if OP has never made a mistake! Sheesh! And what’s worse, all because he ‘almost lost his house to a forest fire.’ Okay, but you didn’t lose your house. The fire never affected you really.”
“So essentially, he was taking it out on and yelling at someone for an accident based on being traumatized by something that never really happened to him (he even said his prior house was fine).”
“At any rate, she definitely saw his true colors, realizing she’d likely wind up a situation constantly walking on glass, asking permission for everything, and apologizing for her mere presence. She realized it was a glimpse of her future, and not one she wanted. Quite possibly it wasn’t the first time.”
“So you get what you get, OP. instead of being a good, understanding, and concerned partner, he’s now alone. And only he is to blame. She apparently wasn’t happy but handled it appropriately. No drama, no fighting, she just took her stuff and left.”
“If you can’t give your partner some semblance of kindness and decency regardless of a mistake or disagreement, then you shouldn’t be in a relationship where compromise and empathy is a huge part of the deal.” – whisky_biscuit
Though the OP was fairly convinced he had reacted appropriately in the moment, the subReddit said he had another thing coming. Not only did he react to a near event, instead of an actual event, but he didn’t treat his girlfriend as an adult. Talk about a recipe for disaster.