Not having the respect and love of your in-laws can be really hard. When I’m in a relationship, I want nothing more than for my partner’s family to feel welcomed into mine and for the feeling to be reciprocated by his family.
Unfortunately, that often doesn’t happen and you get hurt feelings galore, like with u/housework1998, who asked Reddit “AITA for doing the absolute minimum chores after my girlfriend parents implied I wasn’t a man and she agreed with them?”
OP was bugged by the comment, let’s get into it:
Sorry if some of sentences feel awkward, I am not a native speaker. I work from home and my job is relaxed and doesn’t require me to be glued to the screen, my girlfriend works in a stressful customer service job and most of her days are terrible. In the 2 years we’ve been living together, I do practically all the chores around the house and I try to treat her to like a queen when she comes back home. However, the one thing I can’t do is be a handyman no matter how easy the task is. A few months ago, the bathroom door hinges needed replacing so I called a friend to help.
OP explains that while he does what he can to help around the house, he doesn’t feel comfortable doing handyman work.
Last week during lunch with her parents, I asked her dad about the project he was working on (he does woodworking as a hobby). He showed me the progress on his phone and suggested I should help him with the last touches.
GF’s dad asked OP for help and GF told them about some hinges that OP didn’t want to replace himself. Her mom quickly said men should know how to do things like that.
My girlfriend told him that I can’t even replace door hinges let alone help with that. Her mom said that every man should know how to fix things around the house and her husband agreed with her. The remainder of lunch was very awkward, it was like they were my real parents and were disappointed of me for being a huge failure.
After an awkward lunch, OP told his GF he was unhappy and she said that it was pretty embarrassing that he had to ask for help for simple stuff.
After we left, I told my girlfriend that I didn’t expect their reaction. Instead of taking my side, she said that they were right because it was embarrassing that I need to call a friend to help with something trivial.
I reminded her that I get nervous and anxious everytime I touch a tool. I admitted it was stupid but it’s just the way I am and has been very honest with her since the start. Still she didn’t change her mind.
OP doubled down on feeling uncomfortable about tools (which, admittedly, is weird to me but okay). He then told his GF he would no longer do chores.
I told her that since their idea of being a man is twisted I must share the same view and start working on being their version of a man. I told her that I will stop cooking for her. And I’ll stop doing the dishes, laundry and cleaning. The only thing that I would keep doing is taking the trash out and grocery shopping. So I could focus my time and effort on becoming a man.
I have to admit: I think everyone blows in this story. I’m a little alone in this though: