Walking alone, for some people, poses a greater risk. Especially at night.
I’m sure many can relate. Sometimes, we feel the need to walk in pairs or carry some extra gadgets such as pepper spray to protect ourselves if we’re walking past some sketchy streets.
But, it is not always appropriate to ask someone else to walk with us. Particularly if that puts the other person in danger.
Redditor throwaway-8000000 encountered this very issue with her classmate. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for refusing to walk a girl home through an unsafe neighborhood?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“The other evening (at around 10pm), I took a bus home from school with a girl from my class who lives somewhat close to me. We have a lab together, which is a very small group of students, so we have started to get to know each other, but we aren’t really friends or anything.”
“When we got off the bus she asked me if I wanted to walk a particular route home with her, which would run by her apartment.”
“I could also get home via this route but it was more indirect & also would take us under an overpass and down a street that is a lot sketchier than the route I would normally take (and, after I ‘dropped her off,’ I’d have to pass through this area alone).”
“So I ended up saying ‘No, sorry’ and explained that I wanted to take the route that was more direct.”
OP’s classmate was upset.
“She didn’t really say anything in response, we said goodbye, and I didn’t think much of it after that.”
“This morning, though, she messaged me on Facebook and said that she wanted to let me know that she was really bothered by the fact that I wasn’t willing to walk home with her route when it wouldn’t have been any extra effort for me and it would have helped her feel more safe.”
“She said that as a woman, I should know how it feels to be unsafe and should want to help out someone else in a difficult situation. I explained to her that I actually would have had to walk for a few minutes in that unsafe area BY MYSELF in order to get home and that I didn’t want to do that.”
“She basically disagreed and said that it wouldn’t have made a difference which way I went, only one way I’d be with her and one way I’d be alone. I ended up just apologizing because I didn’t want to start drama within my lab group.”
“So AITA for not walking her way?”
“I think I might be the asshole because I definitely could have walked home her way, it would have taken maybe 5 extra minutes and I would have been with her most of the time, and it would have helped her to feel more safe.”
“Edit: I AM NOT A MAN, not sure why there are so many comments about sexism”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Most Redditors agreed OP was not the a**hole.
“NTA. So what she is saying is that her safety is more important than yours. Also get some pepper spray and stay aware of your surroundings.” ~ new_clever_username
“Right? Like OP would also be scared. That is what I never get when someone wants someone else to walk them home through a scary place when the chaperone has to walk back alone.” ~ GreyCici
“That’s what I’m saying. I don’t understand why this woman would be upset at OP for looking out for her own safety here as well.” ~ Chairmanca93
“I read the entire thing assuming OP was a man until I got to the bottom then I was like ???????? No sis you cannot ask another woman to put herself in danger to protect you???” ~ Outrageous_Tea_8568
“Right??? I mean, if OP were a man it would also be NTA, but her being a woman is just icing on the self-centered cake that is her classmate” ~ Letll1994
Redditors argued that OP’s classmate should’ve found other arrangements.
“What was her plan if OP wasn’t on that bus? She’d walk on her own and be fine. If OP had agreed to walk her, then it would be a different situation, but her expectation that he go out of his way for her is a bit strange.”
“It might have been nice for OP to do that, and might have made her feel safer, but to a certain extent, she chose her housing in a rough area, she chose classes that would keep her late, and she chose not to make other arrangements for getting home safely.” ~ GinjaJaz
“Yes she choose this but that doesn’t mean it was first choice. Many things could affect these choices like not having enough money to live somewhere safer.”
“Or she needs to take that class all other time for that class filled up. But still she shouldn’t expect other people to put their safety last over hers.” ~ new_clever_username
“Exactly. OP would be put in bad neighborhood by herself. On top of that, she isn’t as familiar with this route as the lab partner was. Thereby, making it worse for OP and possibly more dangerous for her. NTA” ~ JKaldran
Redditors argued OP needs to take care of herself.
“Don’t set yourself on fire to keep someone else warm. You would have been forced to pass through that unsafe area alone on your return home. Your reason was valid and not your problem if she couldn’t understand that. NTA.” ~ jpcats
“NTA. She wanted you to take a more dangerous route alone, because it made her feel safer. Kinda feels like setting yourself on fire to make her feel warm.”
“You had every right to decline.” ~ Crispydragonrider
“NTA, you have raised a valid concern which she dismissed just because it doesn’t affect her. You should walk back on the apology and tell her that she’s totally in the wrong for asking you to risk your safety for her when it’s not necessary at all and dismissing your concern of your own safety.”
“And if she really felt unsafe, she should have contacted her own family to walk her home. They will not need to walk alone back home, though they’ll be alone when walking to pick her up but they know the area better than you do still.”
“Also if it’s safe for you to walk back after seeing her off, then it’s absolutely safe for her to walk back solo. Hypocritical.”
“Stay clear of such selfish people.” ~ denasher
Do whatever you have to do to stay safe, and help others do the same.