Some folks just want to feel better than everyone else. They act like they’re the best at everything and might even boss others around. Here’s a story online that shows how this can cause problems.

An internet user recently asked, “Am I a jerk for banning my sister-in-law (SIL) from my house over tomato sauce?”. We want you to decide. 


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The Original Poster (OP) (28F) has an older brother (32M). He is married to her SIL(33F). OP gets along with her well, except for this one point: if you don’t keep an eye on her, she will get into the kitchen, and add seasonings to whatever is cooking.

She thinks she is fixing stuff, but not all foods need turmeric.

What Happened This Saturday?

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This Saturday, OP received 40 lbs of tomatoes, it took OP the whole weekend to turn it into a sauce that she was planning to can. She cans it plain, then adds whatever seasonings and herbs it needs, depending on the recipe.

SIL Managed To Get In The Kitchen

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Her brother and SIL came to take a bag of spare clothes for one of their kids, and in the 5 minutes it took OP to get the bag, her SIL managed to get into the kitchen, add salt, pepper, turmeric, olive oil, garlic powder, and Italian herbs to all 5 of the pots that were simmering on the stove.

Oh No! What Did OP Do Then?

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And when OP asked her what she was doing, her SIL dared to say “This sauce needed some taste, I added it for you”. Like she has never told her not to touch what she was cooking before.

OP Was So Angry

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OP was so angry that she knew she couldn’t talk calmly with her. So OP walked to her brother, told him to take the clothes and his wife, and that she is no longer welcome in her house.

What Was Everyone’s Reaction?

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OP’s SIL had followed her, was shocked, and started apologizing, but she just ignored her. 

While speaking to her brother, OP added that he should come by tomorrow to take the sauce his wife ruined because otherwise it would be thrown away, and she expected 40 lbs of replacement tomatoes.

What Happened Next? 

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They left, and her brother came back with the tomatoes, an apology letter from her, and an apology carrot cake (OP’s fav). But she told him that she stood by her decision.

What Does Op Say

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OP says, “Now my parents got involved since I am the one that usually hosts, and since she is not allowed in my house, I told them to make alternate plans for Memorial Day. My husband says that I am in the right, but my parents say that my reaction is way overblown. So Am I a jerk?”

Some More Context 

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OP later made the following edit: “Since there seems to be some confusion, I am not planning to host for memorial day and not invite her. I said I am not hosting, my parents or my brother should host, and I will attend as a guest. I might be angry, but I don’t want her excluded.”

Disrespectful Behavior Deserves A Slap On The Face

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“??? Like What? This is so boundary-disrespecting, disrespectful, and INSULTING to what you’re cooking. And it wasn’t even for HER!! Not the jerk for being furious. I do think she’s learned her lesson, though.” Said one. 

“It’s so unbelievably rude to walk into someone’s kitchen and add things to their food. In my house, it would earn you a slap on the face.” Another added. 

She Was WAY Out Of Her Line

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“She’s crossing boundaries, poking into something where she doesn’t belong. There are all kinds of wrong with messing with someone else’s cooking – what if you were making something for someone allergic to turmeric?

Good on your brother for replacing the tomatoes and on her for apologizing. That said, you’re still in the right to ban her from the house, especially if that has happened multiple times *and you have been clear with her that it’s unacceptable*.

If you are thinking about letting her back in, I will make sure the apology is a real apology first. Not “I’m sorry if your feelings were hurt”, but something which takes responsibility for her actions. “I added seasoning to your giant tomato sauce project without asking; this was out of line, and I shouldn’t have done it. It’s my fault, and I’m sorry. In the future, I’m planning to not enter your kitchen unless invited”.”

She Had No Idea What She Was Messing With

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“Garlic is alkaline, which would change the processing times to safely can the tomato sauce! 

She has no idea what she is messing with, the safety of your preserves for the next year. You are entitled to hold to your boundary even after her apology. A cake is a nice gesture, but by no means is it enough to buy your trust back.”

Your Anger Is Justifiable But You Must Give Her A Second Chance 

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“She was in the wrong, your brother knows she was in the wrong, she apologized, and they both tried to make amends, I think you should give her a second chance and see if she learned her lesson.

Not the jerk, and I can understand your anger, but it seems in time the family should get back together.” 

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This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.

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