Relationships take compromise. When you partner with someone, you need to discuss how you will merge your lives, including expectations about chores and responsibilities.
One woman came to Reddit seeking advice on moving forward after a giant sticking point in her relationship came to a head.
The Original Agreement
The Original Poster (OP) shared that she’s living with her boyfriend, and they agreed to a fairly equitable chore split.
He handles the dishes and the trash while she does the bulk of the cooking and the laundry.
They both work and suffer atrocious commutes.
One Thing He Won’t Do
The boyfriend has one horrible habit which he refuses to change, despite OP’s many protests. For some reason, he can’t manage to get his dirty clothes in the hamper, and he leaves his wet towel in a ball on the floor rather than hanging it to dry.
OP’s had countless conversations with her boyfriend about it. The clothes remain scattered on the floor for days, and the towel gets left so long it starts to mold.
Asking Him To Handle It Leads to Arguments
OP fears even asking him about it anymore, as the last time she asked, it turned into a massive fight where he called her names, guilt-tripped her, and threatened to leave.
“He’d get mad, threaten to leave “since he’s such a horrible boyfriend,” say he was going to put it away eventually, and that I was being a b*tch,” reported OP.
She also doesn’t want to ask because she feels like an adult should be able to put their own dirty clothes in a hamper without being told.
She Asks Once More
One day while cooking a nice dinner for the two of them, OP asked her boyfriend to pick up his clothes, which had been sitting out for about five days.
She got off early and began preparing the meal, and when he got home, she asked him if he could put his dirty clothes away.
Of course, he couldn’t.
He said, “In an hour,” and proceeded to sit at his computer and play on his Gameboy. OP didn’t drop it, but he refused to do the simple chore, saying his feet hurt even though he works in an office and commutes in a car.
OP didn’t understand why he couldn’t pick his clothes up. She informed him that she also worked all day and had to walk a mile home, yet she still managed to cook dinner when she got home.
The boyfriend decided to play a losing game.
“He said, “If you’re going to hold making dinner over my head, just throw it out.”
So OP threw it out.
“I threw out a whole dinner of pasta and ground beef because I felt disgusted by the thought of someone who doesn’t respect me or our living space eating food I exhaustedly spent an hour making,” she stated.
Boyfriend Throws a Fit
The boyfriend appalled the OP would do exactly as he told her to do, proceeded to throw a tantrum. He called her erratic, said she had mental problems, and continued to scream at her.
She came to Reddit wondering if her actions were all that bad.
She Threw the Wrong Thing Out
Reddit laughed at OP’s malicious compliance but said she threw the wrong thing out.
Why waste perfectly good food when she could toss out the entire boyfriend?
“OP throw him out, save the pasta,” said one user.
He’s Manipulative and Mean
Many users pointed out the boyfriend’s harsh and manipulative language as the problem, more so than the clothes on the ground.
“You should have left when he started calling you a b*tch,” advised one user.
“That’s a hard line for me. I have never and would never call my partner a horrible name without it being an agreed upon joke,” said another.
Others said the “I’ll just leave” statement was clearly manipulation to get OP to clean up after him.
“He is training her. “If you keep b*tching, I’ll leave, so stop b*tching and just do it for me” In his mind, him leaving her is the worst thing that could happen to OP,” explained one user, adding, “He’s not leaving and they both know it.”
Tip of the Iceberg
We don’t want to judge a relationship on one bad argument. Perhaps this is the only sticking point, and they can work it out.
However, we’ve often seen that the one bad story is just the tip of the iceberg in situations like these. If that’s true and OP is leaving out a lot of extra information about her boyfriend’s poor behavior, we implore her to leave.
He won’t change; it will only worsen as he gets more secure in the relationship.
Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.