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Man turns off WIFI to force pregnant workaholic wife to rest, she says 'I'm not a child.'

Man turns off WIFI to force pregnant workaholic wife to rest, she says 'I'm not a child.'


Workaholism is a serious problem that doesn't get treated with the same concern as other addictions, particularly in America where it's practically required in order to make ends meet.

Despite all the money and accolades that can come from a non-stop work ethic, our bodies have limits, and the stress and lack of rest can create serious health complications.

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a man asked if he was wrong for shutting off the wifi in order to get his workaholic wife to take a break.

He wrote:

AITA for shutting off the home wifi so that my wife would stop working?

I (35) have been married to my wife Jen (30) for three years, and before that we dated for six years...she is also 32 weeks (eight months) pregnant with twins.

She's my best friend and I absolutely adore her, with one minor flaw, she is a huge workaholic/perfectionist. While we both have very well-paying jobs, Jen's job is way more stressful and time-demanding.

Even though she is brilliant and amazing at what she does, she often works around the clock (on average, 60-hour weeks) at home and in office.

This wasn't a problem before, but about two weeks ago her doctor told her to take a step back from work (i.e., go on leave early) because the stress was starting to cause her a couple of health issues, even though the babies are fine.

However, being the workaholic that she is, she has still been working from her laptop 6-8 hours every day. Which, fine, I understand that she had a couple of cases that she needed to finish.

But most days she was so focused on work that she was forgetting to eat meals and falling asleep at her desk. So, yesterday when I got home, I realized that she had done the same thing again.

I woke her up and told her that she needed to go rest in bed. She insisted she was fine and said there was an emergency with a client of hers and she just needed to finalize some things for a coworker.

I asked her just to take a break first and take a nap/eat, but she said that she would once she was done and that it wouldn't take her more than an hour. I told her fine, but no longer than an hour even though I was pretty annoyed.

So, two hours later when she was still working, I became frustrated and unplugged the Wi-Fi and put the cable out of sight. The only purpose of this was to cut her off from work on her laptop because she clearly had no intention of stopping.

Once she realized, she yelled at me, called me an AH, and she said that I was treating her like a child and accused me of being controlling, condescending, and 'borderline abusive.'

I told her that she is being stupid and just to let the coworker that asked for her help to handle it. I said she was free to use the mobile hotspot on her phone, or figure out the router herself, but otherwise, I'd plug it back in when I woke up (which I did).

She was so mad that she slept in the guest room and when I went to apologize the next morning for calling her stupid (not for cutting the internet) she said that she can't even look at me. She hasn't said another word to me yet.

I'm starting to feel like I might have been a bit extreme, even if I only did it out of concern. but honestly, overdoing it by trying to meet deadlines that she's not even supposed to be responsible for. AITA?

The internet quickly got to work, telling OP exactly what they think.

anthony___fell wrote:


'She said that I was treating her like a child.'

You are.

'[She] accused me of being controlling, condescending, and 'borderline abusive'.

If the shoe fits?

To a certain extent, I get your concern especially if her doctor said to limit stress.

Does she need better work/life balance? Probably. But the way you deal with that concern is NOT by taking away your wife's autonomy. That's just unacceptable in a relationship.

And frankly, given that your wife IS a perfectionist and worried about work deadlines, you probably caused her a lot more stress by cutting her off from the WiFi, and demanding that she go take a nap like she's a naughty five-year-old.

FloMoJoeBlow wrote:

ESH. Wife for being 8 months pregnant and not prioritizing her (and her child's) health. I totally get it, sometimes we get really focused on work and will work long hours, especially those of us who work at home. But, her habits are taking their toll.

OP for acting like a controlling child.

LeoMurray2022 wrote:

'Once she realized, she yelled at me, called me an AH, and she said that I was treating her like a child and accused me of being controlling, condescending, and 'borderline abusive..'

Yep exactly that. YTA

I get your concerns, but she isn't a child and shutting off the WiFi is not going to stop her from getting more and more stressed about the work she has to do and her deadlines.

coitus_introitus wrote:

YTA. I told her fine, but no longer than an hour even though I was pretty annoyed. This right here is controlling and condescending, before we even get to the ridiculous wifi stunt.

Your wife is an adult, and gets to make her own choices. If you disagree so vehemently with those choices, you can choose to make an issue out of it, but just unilaterally making the choice for her, over her objections, about her own health, is everything your wife told you it was, emphasis on the 'condescending.'

If you think your wife actually has an addiction or a serious problem with her work patterns (which does sound like a thing you wouldn't be out of line for worrying about), then you should tell her that and push for therapy, not go behind her back and sabotage her decisions when you don't agree with them.

After receiving lots of passionate responses, OP shared an update.

Edit: So, uh yeah… I wrote this thinking it would get 20 comments at most.

Jen and I had a calm discussion about last night, pretty much immediately after I posted. She called me on my sh*t, told me that I only stressed her out more by cutting the internet (something a lot of people pointed out).

We both decided what we would respond if the other person was acting in a way that was harmful to our family so that we both would feel respected. I apologized for calling her stupid, and she apologized for calling me abusive.

Neither of us meant the name-calling. I promised to trust her judgement, she promised not to overdo it with work. I mentioned that we should go to therapy at least once before the boys are born, and she also thought it was a good idea.

We made up, got burgers, and she passed out on the couch. But I do agree that I was in the wrong here, and I accept my YTA judgement. It’s deserved and I’m going to work on myself.

Side note: it is horrifying that so many people were able to able to make out exactly what she does from what little I said about her job. (she is a pretty kick-a*s attorney tho).

It's refreshing that OP and his wife were able to communicate and come to a place of mutual understanding.

Sources: Reddit
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