Online commenters have criticized a man who expects his neighbor to pay him for child care when he leaves his teenage daughters at his house with the poster’s own daughter to go out with the man’s wife, who has grown very close to the neighbor.
In a post shared on Reddit earlier in January under the username u/AliveLeg6, the man explained that he and his wife, who have a 10-year-old daughter, moved to the neighborhood a couple of years ago. His wife became particularly close to one of their neighbors, Walter, a single dad with two teenage girls. The two bonded over their passion for scary movies and often go together out of town, leaving her husband to care for all three girls.
Whether or not this situation sounds as if it could lead to infidelity, women are usually less likely to cheat than men, according to the Institute for Family Studies (IFS). It says a survey found that 20 percent of men and 13 percent of women reported sleeping with someone other than their spouse.
However, that gender gap changes with age. The IFS data shows that among adults aged 18 to 29, women are slightly more guilty of infidelity than men, with 11 percent of the women confessing to it, compared with 10 percent of men.
The poster also revealed that his wife and his neighbor started doing “stuff outside of watching movies,” like going out for fancy dinner dates.
“Walter invited all of us, including the kids, to go with him to a restaurant that a friend of [his] owned but I said no because it was too expensive,” he wrote. “I don’t like that kind of place because I feel they are a waste of money and didn’t think the kids would enjoy it either.
The poster continued: “I insisted on staying with the kids and let the two of them go be themselves. This has [become] a regular thing and it is in a way a good deal for me because Walter pays for my wife’s dinner and she [can] no longer complain about me not taking her to fancy restaurants.”
But since these movies and dinner nights have become more and more common, the man has grown a little tired of the “burden of constantly babysitting the girls,” and when he voiced his concerns to Walter, the neighbor offered to pay him for his help.
The man’s wife didn’t take this well and told her husband to not take any money from Walter because she believes he should not get paid for babysitting his daughter and the daughters of “a close friend of [their] family like Walter.”
Life coach Marni Goldman told Newsweek that the man should reassess his priorities if he worries more about money than about his own dignity.
She said: “As Mr. Rogers sings ‘It’s a wonderful day in the neighborhood,’ I don’t think he was referring to this one. Respectfully, this man has bigger fish to fry and should be more concerned about his self-respect and dignity and not so much about the money.
“Why is he allowing his wife to hang out with a single man intimately? Dinner and movies are dates, not typical neighborly banter. This situation is so odd and disrespectful. Possibly, the teenage girls can find somewhere else to stay,” Goldman said.
She said that the three girls must be “exceedingly confused” watching their parents acting in this nontraditional manner and that she believes that “cutting the cord” on this child care situation would probably be best.
“It’s time to be out of sight and out of mind,” Goldman continued. “Hopefully, the wife can have enough respect for her husband, and vice versa, to stop seeing this gentleman privately and make their marriage a priority, if of course that’s what they want.”
The post, shared on the r/AmItheA****** subreddit where users discuss their actions with online strangers, has gone viral, receiving over 17,200 upvotes and 3,600 comments.
One user, Primary-Criticism929, commented: “[You’re the A******] for several reasons, two of which are calling taking care of your own kid ‘babysitting’ and not really caring about your marriage. Don’t be surprised if your wife ends up leaving you for Walter, if they’re not already having an affair.”
And TunaNoodleCasserole1 said: “I’m sorry OP, but it looks like your wife has a new husband. And somehow you’re the babysitter. I kept reading thinking this must be a joke. [You’re the A******] asking for babysitting money. But this whole situation is so bizarre. I think you need to figure out if you want to be married, and if she does. Because right now it doesn’t seem like you are.”
Another user, sarpon6, asked: “Your wife is dating your neighbor and you think he should pay you?” And adamnevespa added: “Pimping ain’t easy.”
Newsweek could not verify the details of the case and reached out to u/AliveLeg6 for comment.
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