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Fall-Obsessed Woman Called Out For Boiling Cinnamon In Her Home Despite MIL’s Allergy

Woman holding cinnamon sticks.
LesDaMore/Getty Images

It can be difficult when your close friends and family members have severe to life-threatening allergies.

Particularly when they are allergic to something you absolutely love.

When this is the case, you might almost come to relish times spent apart from these friends and family members, so that you can indulge in these treats or delicacies without a single worry.

The mother-in-law (MIL) of Redditor MarionberryThis6633 had a severe allergy to one of her favorite things.

Knowing this, the original poster (OP) was always very careful whenever her MIL paid a visit.

Unfortunately, the OP’s MIL decided to pay an unannounced visit on a day the OP happened to be enjoying the very thing she was allergic to.

To which the OP’s mother made no effort to hide her displeasure.

Wondering if she had done anything wrong, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for boiling cinnamon to make the house smell nice when my MIL is deathly allergic.”

The OP explained how an unannounced visit from her mother-in-law became a tense, and rather dangerous, afternoon.

“I (21 F[emale]) love fall.”

‘Now that’s it’s getting close to September, I’ve pulled out the fall decorations and candles and am getting ready.”

“Something I’ve always done during this time of year is make a mixture of nutmeg, apple, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice in water, and boil it on the stove.”

“It makes the house smell amazing, works like a humidifier, and puts me in the spirit of my favorite season.”

“My MIL(49 F[emale]) is deathly allergic to cinnamon.”

“To the point where she can’t go Christmas shopping in person because of the cinnamon scented candles, sprays, and wallflowers that are out at that time.”

“Any time she’s coming over, I always make sure that I don’t burn any of my candles that are cinnamon scented, and if I’ve boiled the mixture or burnt one recently, I open the windows to air out our apartment.”

“My husband had left for work not too long ago, so I decided to put a mixture on the stove while I was cleaning.”

“After it had already been boiling for a while, I heard a knock at the door.”

“My MIL had dropped by unannounced.”

“When I opened the door I stepped outside as I thought that she might have needed something, or was dropping something off since she didn’t say anything about coming by and my husband was already gone.”

“She asked why I hadn’t let her in and that she wanted to hang out for a bit.”

‘I explained to her that since I wasn’t aware of her coming, I had started boiling cinnamon to make the house smell nice, and that I didn’t want her to come in as I was worried it might make her react.”

“Her face dropped and she looked furious.”

“She told me that I shouldn’t be doing that and shouldn’t even really own cinnamon scented candles because I know it can make her sick.”

“I told her that I always make sure those things are put away or have not been used when she’s here, but I wasn’t aware of her coming.”

“She just rolled her eyes and began to walk away.”

“Before getting to the stairs, she turned back to look at me and said that it is extremely inconsiderate and rude that I would be willing to risk her having an allergic reaction just because I like the smell.”

“I’m not trying to make my house unwelcoming to her.”

“She is completely welcome when invited or when she asks to come.”

“She is aware that we like the smell of cinnamon and because of this, my husband has told her that she needs to ask before popping up.”

“He has also put his foot down about unannounced visits.”

“My MIL also eats cinnamon rolls willingly.”

“Her kids say ‘ur allergic’, ‘it’ll make u sick’ every time, and every time she responds with ‘it’s worth the upset stomach’.”

“And then she just gets sick later on.”

“However, she also has talked about how she can’t go holiday shopping because of the amount of cinnamon in the air will kill her.”

“I take the precautions because of what she’s said about the cinnamon scents because I’d rather be safe than sorry.”

“Am I the a**hole?”

Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation, by declaring:

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

The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for boiling cinnamon in her house.

Everyone agreed that if anyone was being inconsiderate, it was the OP’s MIL for showing up unannounced. As it was clear that the OP always made the effort to keep her MIL’s allergy in mind and boiled the cinnamon under the impression that her MIL would not be in her house that day.


“You are aware of your MIL’s allergy.”

“You ensured that she was not around when you put the cinnamon on the stove, and when she showed up unannounced, you stepped outside to meet her and shut the door behind you.”

“You did everything right.”

“Expecting you never to have cinnamon in your house again is overkill on MIL’s part.”- No-To-Newspeak

“Serves her right for dropping by unannounced.”

“If ever you choose to have a baby in the future, you now have a shield against her unwanted, unplanned, inconsiderate visits.”

“NTA.”- knightrees02

“She’s deathly allergic but can eat cinnamon rolls with only fear of stomach upset?”

“Sounds like she just doesn’t like the smell.”

“I’m deathly allergic to cinnamon, and the smell for me causes anaphylaxis.”

“When I eat a cinnamon roll, my throat closes up, and I’m covered in hives.”

“I understand people have different allergic reactions, but something doesn’t add up here lmao.”-Ready-Outside-3491

“NTA yet, but you need to talk to your husband about what you two expect concerning family dropping by.”

“Maybe you see her as an occasional visitor, but your husband has given her the go-ahead to drop by any time.”

“A lot of young couples struggle with this issue at first. Few families have the same expectations of random visiting.”

“It could be that you choose to change things. It could be he talks to his mother and sets new boundaries.”

“The way MIL acted is not right.”

“It’s not her house. Her little boy is grown up, and he has a new woman in his life.”

“But he needs to talk to her and set boundaries as part of a couple. You two can’t be divided in this.”-Dardenelle_is_hell


“‘I’m so considerate I assumed you had the decency to not pop-in’.”- Dye_Harder


“She is extremely entitled.”

“It is YOUR HOME.”

“You have every right to make it smell however you want.”

“Just a thought that putting a cinnamon broom on the door would be a great deterrent for MIL to know when she’s NOT WELCOME.”

“Acts like garlic for vampires.”-NotYourMutha

“Okay, I started this believing you were absolutely TA but..”


“You didn’t let her in your home knowing about the allergy!”

“You make sure to be considerate of her when you know she might be near, but let’s face facts, Cinnamon is kinda the lynchpin of the season from September to January.”

“NTA.”- Ok-Bookkeeper-373


“You are accommodating when given adequate notice.”

“Your Mil doesn’t live there. You shouldn’t have to dictate your life round hers.”


“Obviously, if that’s your blend for what I call a simmer pot cool, but it sounds like your loose spices are the same ones in pumpkin spice.”- IndependentIdeal5962


“But a great MIL deterrent.”

“She can’t expect to be accommodated in other people’s homes, especially if dropping by unannounced.”- HappyLifeCoffeeHelps

“If she is so deathly allergic, then why is she willingly eating cinnamon rolls?”

“NTA.”- jkosarin


“It’s one thing to ask people to clean out the house for visits. That’s reasonable.”

“Asking that all your family members not even OWN the thing that makes you allergic.”

“That’s crazypants behavior.”

“Your MIL is TA.”- 2022F*ckPutin

“I’d start burning cinnamon every day.”

“NTA.”- Ruegurl


“I’m also allergic to cinnamon, and my friends love the scent.”

“I don’t drop by unannounced, and they let me know if they have something inside that’ll make me sick.”- StormAlucard

“Congratulations on the MIL-repellent recipe!”

“NTA.”- slendermanismydad


“How is someone ‘deathly’ allergic to X ingredient, consuming said ingredient and not dying?”-LessResident9495

As much as people think that showing up at people’s homes without telling them will be a pleasant surprise, it almost never is.

As they very well might find their plans for the day disrupted by this unannounced visit.

Such was the case for the OP, whose plans for a relaxing afternoon went right out the window upon her MIL’s arrival.

One can only hope the OP’s MIL will give ample notice before paying her next visit.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.