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Woman Called Out For Going On Birthday Trip Alone After Husband Refuses To Show Affection

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Wanting time to yourself when you’re married can be controversial in some relationships. And when you even want to be alone on your birthday? It can easily stir up some drama.

That’s what happened to a woman on Reddit who was tired of her husband never doing anything for her birthday. But when she booked a getaway by herself instead, her husband got upset.

She wasn’t sure about how she’d handled things, so she went to the AITA subReddit for perspective.

The Original Poster (OP), who goes by the name Throwrabdaytrips on the site,asked:

“AITA for going on a birthday trip alone without my husband?”

She explained:

“The last few years on my birthday, I was pretty sad because my husband didn’t show me affection on my birthday at all.”

“I would ask him the day before to initiate cuddling or give me a hug at least but all he would do is say happy birthday as if we were just friends.”

“I didn’t feel loved, and he normally never initiates affection either verbal or physical. But it is always harder on my birthday.”

“This year I didn’t want to be sad and reminded that my husband just sees me as a friend so my birthday weekend, I booked 2 nights at a hot springs hotel.”

“I told him I was going and it turns out he assumed he was coming but I left right after work on Friday and that night he blew up my phone saying I’m selfish and only care about myself.”

“I explained why I had wanted some time to myself, that I didn’t want to feel rejected and that I needed some time where I could forget about being sad but he still said that husbands and wives are supposed to do things together and that I’m not a team player.”

“I want to know if I really was wrong and selfish or if it’s understandable that I didn’t invite him.”

People on Reddit were then asked to judge who was in the wrong in this situation based on the following categories:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

Responses varied, but for the most part Redditors were on the same page that while OP did nothing wrong, her marriage definitely has some very bright red flags.

“NTA, you’re looking after yourself because he won’t. He might be mad about not going with you, but I don’t think he would have cuddled you if he was there.”

“From what you’ve said, he doesn’t really want to be affectionate like that, so it really feels like he’s mad that he doesn’t get to go on holiday more than anything.”

“The angry phone call also feels like him venting frustration and blaming you when he’s made this bed and is annoyed to lay in it.”

“You’ve already asked him to do something small – embracing your spouse shouldn’t be a chore. I’m sorry he’s not doing this.”

“I wish I knew why he didn’t, but you’re not to blame for being good to yourself and putting yourself first on your own birthday.”

“Definitely keep doing this the rest of the year, too. You deserve to be treasured.” –avanthusiast

“OP ‘felt bad’ so she booked him a trip to the same place for the weekend ‘by himself’.”

“IMHO that makes this whole situation ESH. She’s literally enabling and catering to him and then has the gall to complain he’s acting like a brat? Gee I’m shocked that he throws tantrums to get what he wants.”

“I’m sorry but I just don’t have endless sympathy and understanding for people who play such a major part in their own misery, refuse to do anything about it then have the nerve to whine about it.”

“You’re not innocent OP. You want a change in your life then do. the. work.. Stop enabling him ffs. Stop giving him what he wants.”

“You literally stood up for yourself just to fold in the end so what exactly was the point?” –FoxUniCarKilo

“If she has to ask for it and even so he doesn’t even do this small affectionate gesture for her, he’ll never change nor does he want to because he feels comfortable getting all the advantages of being married without having to contribute with the bare minimum.” –AnniaT

“NTA, you’re perfectly allowed to get some time for yourself birthdays or not. I’m sorry to say this but your marriage doesn’t sound healthy, maybe try couples counseling?” –yweeb

“Why couples counseling with someone she’s already tried to communicate with and he didn’t care?”

“I bet she’s probably already suggested it but he doesn’t care to even cuddle his wife at her request, so I’m not believing he’d do the necessary work to properly do couples therapy and he’d probably resent her for making him do the work (after years used to just riding along with minimal effort).”

“Couples’ therapy is for partners who care about the relationship and each other, not for when one partner doesn’t even respect nor cares for the other.” –AnniaT

“I mean your not the a**hole but is this anyway to live?”

“Your in a relationship where you don’t want to spend your birthday with your significant other, is it even worth still being in a relationship?”

“I’m guessing you didn’t properly communicate that he wasn’t coming either.”

“You both either need therapy or a divorce.”

“I just feel so sad for you, I hope your able to both get to a better place ❤️”

“Happy birthday too ❤️” –Kebar8

“Holy SH*T! NTA”

“After you go to the hot springs, get your butt to a good divorce lawyer. Then go and find someone to fu*king celebrate your godd*m birthday with you!”

“Since you don’t preface your story with ‘my husband is usually awesome/good in bed/has a wonderful sense of humor/writes terribly romantic sonnets to my eyebrows…'”

“I am led to conclude that your everyday life sucks, but you cope and suck it up until it’s your birthday and it really hits home how much your marriage is a joyless, soul-sucking, vanilla existence!”

“You have set the bar waaaaaayyyy too low with this guy! Not even some hot 70’s girl in roller skates could limbo under it! He wants some hot springs but not a hug ON YOUR BIRTHDAY? The gall!”

“You don’t say you have kids, or a dog or even a vintage set of matching toasting cups that just can’t be separated. Just get out and then go and live your best life!” –Optimal-Beautiful399

“🎵It’s beginning to look a lot like LEAVE HIM 🎵”

“NTA, get rid of this man, he doesn’t love or respect you. It’s not worth it.”

“A loving partner would try to speak your love language back to you and he clearly doesn’t care to try. He’s neglecting you, it’s abuse, leave him.” –StickyStickyJabJab


“It rly doesn’t matter what y’all’s relationship is or isn’t like in this scenario in regards to me judging whose the a**hole.”

“It’s healthy to have boundaries and be allowed to do separate things. It’s literally your birthday and you should be able to do anything you want with whoever you want on that day (excluding an affair lol).”

“I feel if he was a better husband he’d have respected if you wanted alone time for your birthday or even if you had wanted to go with other people without him. I feel that’s the true definition of being a team with your partner.”

“I think the miscommunication should have been avoided by you telling him your plans ahead of time, but a mistake isn’t being an a**hole.”

“If I was in your husband’s shoes I would have said I felt sad about the miscommunication and would have asked you to inform me better next time on your plans bc I was looking forward to going and I feel bummed I didn’t.”

“I would have ended with but it’s ultimately your bday to spend as you wish, and I hope you have fun! I feel a quality partner would have had a response similar to that about the miscommunication.”

“I expect that sort of response from my partner if some scenario like this happened to us.”

“I would strongly reconsider my marriage with my own spouse if she called me selfish for not spending MY birthday the way SHE wanted me to.”

“Even if I failed to tell her my plans, like that’s my mistake but it’s still my birthday plans that need to be respected.”

“Your husband’s problem wasnt even about that. It looks like it was about not being with you because he thinks being glued to your side against your will is “being on a team”.”

“He would have been mad if you had told him then, right? So the issue was he was mad he didn’t get what he wanted on a day not about him.”

“I encourage my wife to have fun without me/by herself whenever she wants unless we had preexisting plans she broke. She does the same for me. I haven’t met a couple in a healthy relationship that wasn’t like that.”

“TLDR: He was dismissing your birthday wishes for his own desires, and daring to call you the selfish one.”

“And he blew up your phone yelling at you and you admitted in response to someone else you had a bad birthday trip bc of that 🙁 .”

“Also he was mad about you going without him, not the miscommunication. So I don’t know what you could have done to avoid him being mad. He just doesn’t respect what you want. NTA.” –pythoidaae

Hopefully OP’s future birthdays can go a bit better.

Written by Peter Karleby

Peter Karleby is a writer, content producer and performer originally from Michigan. His writing has also appeared on YourTango, Delish and Medium, and he has produced content for NBC, The New York Times and The CW, among others. When not working, he can be found tripping over his own feet on a hiking trail while singing Madonna songs to ward off lurking bears.