We all say things we don’t necessarily intend to.
Whether it’s a quick snarky comment or a hidden truth, or even the occasional lie, something in us just blurts out words.
What happens, though, when this thing you’ve said isn’t just blurted out, it’s encouraged?
That was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) Chance-Persimmon-164 when he came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.
“AITA for calling out my ex’s new wife for being unemployed”
OP began with a detailed history.
“This is a weird title but here’s what actually happened.”
“My ex and I broke up 5 years ago after a year-long relationship, he broke up with me and I took it very hard back then.”
“I can’t say I did anything crazy, aside from a few weeks after the break up getting really drunk on a night out and sending him some embarrassing texts.”
“It was the worst heartbreak I’ve ever had, and it didn’t help that he kept messaging me to be ‘friends’ even though I tried to set boundaries and say I need space to heal.”
“Anyways, that’s all in the past.”
“I can confidently say that I have indeed healed from that and am over him.”
“He recently got married to a girl he started dating like 2 months after we broke up.”
“Honestly, I’m happy for him. Good for them.”
“Me, on the other hand, I’ve dated since then but haven’t been able to find anyone worth marrying; I haven’t even had another serious relationship since him.”
“He’s still in the periphery of my social circle because we still have a lot of mutual friends from uni.”
“And sometimes I see both of them in social settings.”
“While he and I have buried the hatchet and usually just chat when we happen to be in the same room for a bit (although we never text or meet up outside of these contexts).”
“His wife and I have always treated each other with polite disinterest.”
“I know she really doesn’t like me.”
“An important note about her is that she’s been unemployed for a loooong time.”
“Idk if it’s because she wants to be a stay-at-home-wife (completely valid choice if that’s her thing!) or because she’s been unable to find work, but she hasn’t worked in many years despite having a master’s degree.”
“I’ve been really able to advance in my career in the past 5 years, and I’m quite far ahead in my field for someone my age and I’m very proud of myself because I worked extremely hard.”
“Anyways here’s the issue: the other day a bunch of people went for drinks. I came.”
“They were both there.”
“We were all sitting at the same table in a bar.”
Everything was fine, until…
“Someone I haven’t seen in a while asked me if I’m dating anyone.”
“I replied ‘no, not right now.’ My ex’s wife quickly made a snarky comment ‘aw it’s okay, some people just stay single’ in front of everyone, like 10 of our friends.”
“Without missing a beat, I blurted out ‘yeah just like some people are meant to stay unemployed”‘.
“She got really upset, cried, and left.”
“Her husband messaged me that I should apologize to her for embarrassing her. I said I will if she apologizes first.”
“He said she refused because what I said was worse, apparently.”
OP was left to wonder,
Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.
Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors decided: NTA
Commenters pointed out that ex’s wife struck first.
“LOL not the way I thought this would go.”
“She gave it out, but couldn’t take it lol” ~ ThrowAwayCatBalloon
“That’s the thing tho…..who cares if it was harder?”
“It’s still not OP’s fault.”
“If someone comes up and punches me (out of the blue/unprovoked) you better believe I’m punching back HARDER (if I can of course)”
“You can’t start sh*t and then complain when they retaliate, no matter how hard they retaliate.” ~ princeoinkins
“Don’t start none, won’t be none.” ~ Fromashination
“People need to learn not to start sh*t unless they can handle someone else finishing it for them.”
“I have zero sympathy for a**holes that are inexplicably rude and then have the audacity to act offended when the object of their rudeness fails to passively accept it. ~ BringBackBowie
Some commenters thought there were bigger issues.
“What she did and said was uncalled for, what you replied with is GOLD lol.”
“She seems jealous of your achievements and the fact that her husband still keeps contact with you. It seems like a lot of insecurity on her end.”
“Even though you are on good terms with your ex now, do you think it’s possible to cut ties with him?”
“It just seems like his wife gets a kick out of trying to berate you.”
“He will always have to take her side since she is his life partner now. I just feel like it’s going to cause a weird drift in your social circle if she keeps getting included, and she will because she is his wife.” ~ AshleyB7172000
“It doesn’t sound like she has anything to do with him.”
“They interact in group settings, where both of them are invited, and not outside of that.”
“Why is it on her to either get a new friend group or not go to group get-togethers where they are? If the new wife can’t behave, she should stay home.” ~ cedarfigx
“‘She seems jealous of your achievements and the fact that her husband still keeps contact with you. It seems like a lot of insecurity on her end.'”
“^^This, even if they aren’t keeping contact on purpose, New Wife is jealous of the fact that you have a more established place not just within the friend group but also a perceived place in your ex’s life just due to being there longer than her.”
“She’s lashing out from insecurity and was surprised Pikachu at reaping exactly what she sewed. If she wants an apology, she can dish one first just like she did with her snark.”
“NTA OP, and that response was 👨🍳💋 (chef’s kiss if my emojis don’t come through)” ~ 11Halloween22
For many, an apology was out of the question.
“NTA.You should not apologize.”
“Her claws came out, your claws came out with a meaningful retort.”
“Unless you’ve done something you are truly remorseful for, an apology is made in the interest of maintaining a relationship.”
“You don’t want or need to maintain a relationship with this girl. She tried to publicly humiliate you and it backfired.”
“Can’t handle the heat, stay out of the kitchen.” ~ AryaIsWaif
“This right here.”
“As my therapist says, How invested are you in salvaging this relationship? That’s how much energy you should put into the apology.” ~ Loquat_Green
Commenters pointed out consequences are still a thing.
“People on this app really say take the high road over everything but that’s exactly how we got to the point where people say sh*t like your ex’s wife did and how so many think they are the victims.”
“As someone else said ‘Don’t throw stones if u live in a glass house’ or some sh*t.”
“She made a rude and unnecessary comment, which you replied back within the exact same manner and ‘aggression'”.
“Honestly the whole backstory of her being with your ex was irrelevant.”
“This doesn’t seem like a jealousy or resentment thing.”
“You were literally just replying in the exact same tone with the same type of reply. Don’t dish it if you can’t take it!” ~ weist-risq
“Taking the high road only works if the rest of the social circle expresses disdain at the behavior either by looks, behavior or by saying something.”
“If someone had said ‘why would you say that to OP?'”
“Or start avoiding her, she might learn, but if OP just says nothing and looks embarrassed and the rest of the social circle is not willing to say/do anything themselves, the ex’s wife’s behavior will only get worse and OP will be a doormat.”
“The trouble with escalating behavior is that it escalates because no one says anything.”
“If you take the high road ALL the time, and no one else says anything, it just leaves the rude person with the idea that everyone agrees with them.” ~ ritan7471
There were even personal stories.
“‘NTA. She was snarky first. You just replied in the same tone.'”
“A woman I used to work with hated me.”
“No clue why but from day one she did not like me.”
“She was about 10-15 years older than me and had worked for the company for many years more than I had.”
“Several years into working together we both happened to buy new cars of the same brand but different levels.”
“I congratulated her on her new vehicle and she said ‘Husband and I looked at your model but decided it wasn’t nice enough'”.
“Before I could stop myself I responded with, ‘oh that’s great! We compared mine with your model and just decided it looked like an old lady car”’.
“I got called into the big boss’s office for that and when I explained my side he honestly laughed so hard I thought he would pass out.” ~ dogsandpeaceohmy
Words are the most powerful tool we have.
Use them carefully (and hilariously) as you see fit!