Communication is crucial for a healthy and harmonious family dynamic. It allows wives, husbands, and kids to understand each other’s needs, emotions, and thoughts. But what if everything seems to be disrupted?

A Redditor took to the forum and asked, “AITA for giving my SAHM wife a written performance review with suggested areas needing improvement?”


The Original Poster (OP) is a 33-year-old man who has a 6-year-old daughter with his 36-year-old wife. The wife has another daughter, a 13-year-old, who lives with them full-time, and they have custody of their 15-year-old niece. So, in total, they have 3 daughters. 

The teenagers are each other’s best friends and share a large bedroom at their request. The dynamic in the household is such that the mother and youngest child are against the teenagers, with OP acting as the referee between everyone.

The youngest child was taught by the wife to blame others for her actions to avoid consequences, resulting in the teenager being able to avoid punishment simply by blaming someone else. The youngest was the wife’s favorite, which led to her becoming entitled and bratty. 

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What Happened Next?

One day the wife and OP had an appointment they both needed to attend, and when they returned, it was apparent that the pool had been used, which was not allowed when they were not home.

The youngest divulged that she was in the room coloring and never went swimming. The teens said that was not true; she had gone swimming. Only the teens were punished. 

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OP’s wife refused to give the youngest any type of consequence. The husband found the youngest’s wet swimsuit hidden in the garage and argued with his wife that she should be punished for swimming and lying. After a relentless disagreement, OP was silenced as the wife gave the youngest minimal consequence.

The lying, blaming, and favoritism ultimately caused the teens to act out. Most of their punishments included giving more chores, specifically, the chores the ones 6-year-old had. Or recently, they were removed from music lessons as a consequence. 

OP believes that the teenagers are so frustrated by the situation that they don’t even care when they verbally attack their mother in response to her unfair treatment. They got blamed and punished for things they didn’t even do; from OP’s perspective, lashing out gives them a release.

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What Did OP Do?

OP and his wife had countless, tiring arguments. She’d either not see her faults, or she would agree to do it, but it was never actually done. 

OP decided to write her a performance review as a stay-at-home mom. It included the areas needed improvement. But OP touched on how she needed to listen better and stop being biased.

OP needed her wife to be fair in all her decisions and stop making rash decisions without considering all three kids. OP recommended she give each child the same amount of one-on-one alone time to speak or just be with one another.

To soften the impact of the review, OP gave her accolades on her solid points for other areas aside from parenting. OP believed that organizing his thoughts on paper would be the best approach, as it would prevent the wife from interrupting. However, the approach quickly backfired in OP’s face.

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How Did OP’s Wife React?

She was quiet for the first hour after receiving the review. Then the wife completely exploded on OP. She threatened to get a private bank account and take half of his paycheck weekly if he continued this behavior.

She further said the review was abusive and a manipulative move. 

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What Do We Think?

Sometimes communicating can be difficult. The way she thought might be different from how OP sees it. For example, if a 6 year old went swimming, the teen sisters are definitely responsible. They are the older ones, and you cannot hold a 6 year old “fully” responsible. At the same time, you need to make the 6 year old understand how lying is bad and you should not blame anyone for your own fault. 

Instead of a “performance review”, OP could have written a heartfelt letter on how he felt, and what he thinks. Similarly, OP’s wife should listen to everyone a bit more, communicate how she thinks of a situation.

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Redditors are divided, some think OP is wrong and some think he is right. Few others think everyone is wrong.

The concerns you have are legitimate and it needs an urgent solution. But, the way you went about it is really unhealthy. The parenting of your children is not a project. You are not her boss, you are her husband and the father of her kid. Giving her a performance review comes across as really condescending and as she said, manipulative.” said one. 

Another one says, “idk, im leaing towards Y T A. I’m wondering if we’re getting an unbiased version of events about the parenting issues. For example the pool thing, why would you hold a 6 year old equally responsible to their teenage siblings? Why does it matter what the 6 year old claimed? If the six year old went swimming alone, the teenage babysitters should be punished for allowing it. If they all went swimming, the six year old was just following the example of their much-older siblings. Maybe OPs wife isn’t believing everything the 6 year old says, so much as (reasonably) treating the children differently based on their ages.”

Do you think OP did the right thing by giving reviews to his wife, or should he have done something else to tackle the situation? Was OP’s wife right in how she handled the situation? What would you do in this situation?

This originally appeared on Mrs. Daaku Studio.

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