Entertainment And News

Man Says He Had To 'Put His Foot Down' Because Of His Wife's Distracting Habit

Photo: Dikushin Dmitry / Shutterstock
woman looking away sitting on bed husband blurred in background

A husband sparked a debate after admitting that he's frustrated with the distracting habit that his wife won't stop doing. Posting to the subreddit "r/AITA," he claimed that his wife's habit is becoming quite a problem for him, especially when she's in social settings.

The man is upset and decided to 'put his foot down' about his wife's excessive reading habit.

In his Reddit post, he explained that his wife is an avid reader and will often pick up lengthy books, such as "Crime and Punishment" and "Les Misérables." He shared that she'll pick up these books and fixate on them, sometimes only taking a break to eat or use the restroom.

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"Normally, this isn’t really a problem because I’ll just watch TV with our kids and she really only does this on weekends where there isn’t really much to do. In fact, she’s considerate enough to meal prep and clean the house beforehand so she gets to read," he wrote.

The issue for him lies in the two going out for social events. "I am in a job that requires lots of networking and depends on my image and the image of my family, so I’m constantly struggling with this habit."

Photo: ASTA Concept / Shutterstock

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At many of these work events, his wife ends up coming but will download a book on her phone and sit by herself as she reads. He says she refuses to have conversations with people and would rather read whichever book she brought with her.

"Everyone looked at her so weird when we went to a gala a few days ago. She wouldn’t socialize and make conversation and this was a black-tie event mind you," he complained. "I’m pretty sure my coworkers were laughing at me because all the other wives were socializing and she was just sitting [in] a corner."

When they arrived back home from the event, he confronted his wife about her reading habit and argued that it was not sustainable at all. He tried to explain to his wife that she has other "responsibilities" besides taking care of their home, and that one of them includes showing up to these social events without being distracted by a book.

"I told her she needed to grow up and read like normal people do in blocks of time, but she got really offended and said that I don’t have a right to tell her what to do with her weekends, which I think is ridiculous because I’m her husband and I shouldn’t have to beg for some kind of attention from my own wife," the man said.

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Many people agreed he was in the wrong for reprimanding his wife about reading.

"I appreciate the need for networking events, but it sounds like you want to trawl your wife about like some sort of trophy," one Reddit user wrote. "She, on the other hand, sounds like she doesn't want to be treated like some sort of possession to boost your image and would rather be anywhere else."

Another user added, "Your wife has the most harmless hobby in the world, and clearly doesn’t have the same interest in networking to the level that you do. If you’re embarrassed by your own wife, that’s a whole issue outside this petty book situation."

As many people mentioned in the comments section, her reading habit may be linked to her mental health.

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It's common for people who suffer from social anxiety to find comfort in reading during situations where there are a lot of people around.

It's understandable that someone who may not fully understand that, like this woman's husband, would feel slighted by her habit of constantly reading everywhere she is, and look at it as doing more harm than being a fun hobby she does.

His initial approach could've just done more harm than good, and if the issue of her reading is truly something that he can't get over, the better way to talk to her about it would be with empathy and the urge to understand if any underlying issues cause her to cling to books in public settings.

Ultimately, any relationship thrives on having a comprehensive and open dialogue if any problems arise.

In addressing his concerns to his wife, he should attempt to try and reach a compromise instead of trying to dictate that she should be reading "like normal people," and only then will they each discover a solution to address both of their needs.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.