Starting a new job and navigating a different culture can be stressful for anyone. Not only do you have to get used to countless work procedures, company policies, and the whole environment, but you also want to get along with your workmates. And we all know how much first impressions count.
But when one man invited his new coworkers to his home for dinner, probably the last thing they expected was getting involved in a heated family drama. Reddit user Sadie3586478 recently created a post on the popular AITA subreddit with one question in mind — whether or not she was wrong to get into an argument with her husband.
Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.
When the husband wanted to introduce his partner to the guests, nearly the first thing that came out of his mouth was an insult. You see, he presented his spouse as “the housewife”, even though she works full-time. While this could have left the woman feeling upset and unappreciated, she instead decided to hit back with a sharp response. Read on to find out how the story unfolded and share your thoughts about it in the comments!
Recently, a woman opened up about a heated argument with her husband after he introduced her as “the housewife”, even though she works full-time
Image credits: Kamaji Ogino (not the actual photo)
While inappropriate remarks can make anyone feel upset, the user chose to hit back with a sharp response instead
Image credits: cottonbro (not the actual photo)
Image credits: Sadie3586478
To find out what an expert had to say about this incident, we reached out to relationship coach Marta, founder of MyCoachMarta. “I can only speculate based on this single conversation because I don’t know the complete context of this couple’s dynamic, but it appears like the husband attempted to boost his ego by putting his wife down and passing it off as a joke. For me, this is a relationship red flag,” she told Bored Panda.
Making inappropriate remarks about his SO in front of others can tell us a lot about the husband. “People who have a good sense of self-worth don’t need to prove themselves by harming others. The fact that he sought external validation from his colleagues at the expense of his wife says a lot about how he views himself,” she added.
We also managed to get in touch with Sundy Gilchrist, a relationship coach and founder of Sublime Relationships. She mentioned there could be many reasons why the man chose to introduce his partner this way, and some of them are probably totally unconscious ones.
The coach explained that having a non-working wife could make him feel like he’s a great provider for her and his family. “He also might wish his wife didn’t work and stayed home and made his castle a place of respite after being out there in the jungle of life,” she said and added many would be surprised how deeply ingrained these old conditionings are in some men.
Gilchrist added that he also could feel threatened by her success and envious of her competence and drive (if she’s successful) because, with this attempt, he tried to make himself bigger by making her appear small. “He might have felt the urge to not have her in the ‘limelight’ as having a successful career in her own right, wanting the focus to be on him amongst his colleagues,” she continued.
However, both spouses got into reactivity, Gilchrist argued. The wife became passive-aggressive, laughed in a pretending manner, and put her husband down in public. “He reacted by feeling diminished and belittled in front of his colleagues and losing face in the event of it all, not talking about it whilst still making eyes, and then blowing up after, closing down and sulking.”
Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.
According to her, it would have been better if the woman chose to ask him why he introduced her in that way as she found it upsetting, and she’s curious to know why he did it. “She might have apologized for jumping straight into reactive defense without asking him why he’d introduced her in a way that negated a part of who she is.” Moreover, “He might have seen her face just in time to rescue the situation and say an apology to the effect of his unaware introduction.”
Redditors unanimously agreed the wife was not in the wrong, here’s what they had to say
“His reaction indicates that he is more concerned with someone thinking he is a decent guy than with actually being one,” an expert said
The man’s introduction was absolutely inappropriate and the wife’s reaction would have added salt to his subconscious unworthiness wound, Marta argued. “The intensity of her reaction tells me that this triggered something for her, most likely because it was not the first time he said something demeaning. While I understand and empathize with the wife’s reaction, it only further fuelled her husband to turn it against her.”
Also, his lack of apology and the following reaction is a warning sign for gaslighting, a form of emotional manipulation in toxic relationship dynamics. “His remark was meant to embarrass his wife, but he accused her of doing the same to him — this is a sign of projecting his intentions onto her. His fears of her “ruining his image” demonstrate how fragile his self-esteem is and how much he relies on external validation to feel good about himself,” Marta said.
Hurtful interactions have no place in a healthy relationship, so the husband’s remark should never have been voiced aloud in the first place. “This type of behavior is triggering, so it’s difficult to respond appropriately in a heated moment. Short responses and avoiding heated disputes are the best reactions because gaslighters thrive on defensive behaviors and it fosters further gaslighting with comments like ‘you’re too sensitive,’” Marta explained.
The relationship coach suggested a few examples of responses that could help handle similar situations appropriately and not add more fuel to the fire. “My employment and qualifications are not up for debate,” “I’m not sure what was amusing about it,” or “That’s an intriguing perspective you have of me when I work full-time and run our home”.
“Women sometimes cease seeing gaslighting like this in relationships where it is prevalent, and it continues to erode their self-esteem, confidence, and takes a toll on their mental health.”
Marta believes this couple would benefit from an open conversation “about not only what happened that night, but also how they communicate, boundaries, and emotional safety.”