Working from home during COVID times has taken a lot of getting used to for parents around the world. Transitioning from the independence of an office to the all-togetherness of working from home with the whole family around has been tough for everyone, and not everyone is handling it with grace.
Reddit user PaperWhyte took to the popular message board platform to ask the all-important question, “Am I The Asshole?”, when her unemployed husband hid out in the bedroom to play video games instead of watching the couple’s twin daughters during mom’s important meeting.
“My husband isn’t working at the moment, he had to leave his job due to issues with anxiety. I am the breadwinner for our family at the moment. We have a set of 2-year-old twins,” the post explains. “I told my husband, if he wants to quit his job, that’s fine, but I expect him to step up and start doing more around the house, as well as caring for our little ones whilst I’m working. He agreed.”
Plot twist: He’s not stepping up.
For a week OP warned her husband about a meeting she had scheduled. “Today I had a ridiculously important meeting, and have been warning him of it for the past week, saying I can’t look after the kids when I’m in the meeting. He kept saying it’s fine, it’s fine,” she wrote.
Plot twist: It wasn’t fine.
“Well, today came around, and what do you know! He’s in the middle of his league game and can’t pause, this was minutes before meeting, so I had to think quick and I put the girls in the bedroom with him, closed the door and ran to my office,” which seems like a splendid solution to us! “The meeting went well, but now he won’t stop berating me through the bloody door! I absolutely do not want to leave the office right now because I cannot be bothered to deal with him, but at the same time, I feel insanely guilty and I know I should have done something else instead of just putting them in the bedroom with him, I do feel like a bit of an asshole.”
Plot twist: PaperWhyte is definitely NTA in this situation, and Reddit was quick to explain why.
“I say this as a mother of 2-year-old twins and I receive treatment for anxiety: Dad is the asshole,” wrote user Mindue. “It is nearly impossible to work from home and watch kids. I have had to do it a few times; it is a nightmare. Having anxiety doesn’t absolve him of his parenting, and if he is trying to claim it’s so severe he can’t watch his kids during the work day, then he needs to be in inpatient or an outpatient program. I understand he may want to use video games as a coping mechanism, but it doesn’t seem like he is truly addressing his anxiety. He needs to ask his therapist about what coping skills he can use that allows for better functioning.”
Redditor Mm172 wrote, “Oh, no, no, no, he can pause. This isn’t a paying gig. He can absolutely turn off the damn game and take care of his kids. Especially when he knew for a whole entire week that picking up the game at that time was going to be a problem, so starting it up in the first place was a deliberate attempt to foist handling them off on you. He doesn’t get to be mad that it backfired.”
CompassionFever summed it up nicely, “She shouldn’t have even given him a week’s warning — it should go without saying that while OP is working, he is responsible for the kids.”
Seems like a no-brainer to us as well. While anxiety disorders are no joke, neither is foisting your parenting responsibilities off on your at-work partner just so you can play a game. And yelling obscenities through the door at said partner while she’s trying to focus on work? That gets a big ol’ nope from us.
Our vote is definitely NTA, and we hope PaperWhyte wowed them at her meeting despite the manchild yelling at her in the background.