Woman praised for defending herself after in-laws treated her like ‘live-in maid’

A woman has questioned whether she is in the wrong after she confronted her in-laws about treating her like a “live-in maid”.

In a recent Reddit post shared to the popular “Am I The A**hole?” subreddit, the woman explained that she and her husband moved in with her in-laws due to her father-in-law’s health. She wrote in the post that the two have discussed moving out now that he is doing better, but her in-laws are not in support of the idea because they’ve claimed they would “have no idea what they would do without them”.

According to the Reddit user, the couple only pays for groceries and bills per the parents’ request. Because the poster works from home, she has a flexible schedule and completes many of the typical household chores. “I also do all the household cleaning and cooking. I arrange and take all their pets to their veterinary appointments too,” she wrote.

However, she said this wasn’t a situation she had a problem with until recently. “I have begun to feel resentful of the fact that once they are all done with work they can come home and relax, whereas I finish work and have to cook and clean and have no help. On the weekends I spend half of the day cleaning the house while they do what they want,” the poster explained.

She hit her breaking point when she was sick one day, asleep in bed, at which point she claimed her mother-in-law woke her up and asked her when dinner was being served. To not cause an argument, the woman pushed through and made dinner anyway while the rest of the household sat watching television and waiting for their food.

After this incident, she said she went to her husband privately, who ended up agreeing to help out more. However, a similar incident happened again. “I had to drag myself out of bed to cook and once I’d brought in their food my MIL said ‘oh you look truly awful! Poor you! Oh by the way, later would you mind giving everywhere an extra clean? I don’t want to get whatever you have’,” she wrote.

“I accused them of treating me like a live-in maid and not caring about me outside of the services I provide for them. I pointed out that I wouldn’t be in the communal areas if I hadn’t been dragged out to cook and that they could have handled one meal themselves. My husband sat there in silence,” she continued.

According to the woman, her husband said he wished that she had handled the matter more calmly while nothing has changed with her living situation. The poster posed the question to Reddit on whether or not she should have defended herself in that manner.

Many people took to the comments section to defend her. “But take a good look at your husband. He knew you were sick. You work too. And he just let you suffer. Even with you telling him, he thought you would just keep serving him,” one comment began.

“Even if you weren’t sick, this arrangement is highly unfair to you. Your husband saves money and doesn’t need to lift a finger and your in-laws save money and don’t have to lift a finger. Children living with their parents have chores. These adults are sooo lazy.”

Another commenter agreed, writing: “They don’t treat you like a maid... to them, you are a maid. They are holding that house like a carrot in front of you. Don’t let them. They can reach the age of 90 with you still cleaning after them!”

Other commenters focused on the lack of her husband getting involved. “Half of the problem (at least half) is actually your husband,” one comment began. “If I were you (which I realise I’m not), I’d basically tell him that unless this slave treatment of you stops, you’ll move out on your own. After all, what makes you think that this is going to stop after your in-laws are gone, in another decade or so.”

They continued: “In your in-laws’ eyes, I have a feeling that there’s no way that you’re going to come out the good guy. You’re putting your foot down in their house and they already seem like completely entitled hosts. This is a make or break situation. Either your husband switches to team-you, or you get your own place and go into couples counseling, which might be a good idea anyway.”