Woman Asks If She's Wrong For 'Petty' Response To BF's Fake Incompetence

In recent months, there's been a spike in discussion among relationship advice circles about a phenomenon known as performed or weaponized incompetence.

This refers to a pattern of behavior in which one romantic partner will exaggerate their own failures to do household chores in the hopes that the other will do them instead. If someone shows this pattern for long enough, the idea is that their partner won't even bother asking them for help.

But while this strategy has often worked for years in the past, it seems that a lot more people are starting to get wise to it.

Yet when calling out this behavior wasn't enough in one woman's case, she had an unusual way of taking things a step further.

As far as the woman could tell, her boyfriend has been pretending to be clueless about how to do chores like dishes and laundry lately.

And as she explained in a Reddit post, the reason why she believes this is an act was that he was able to keep a decent living space while he was living alone.

For this reason, she told him that she didn't appreciate the implied insult to her intelligence behind "forgetting" how to do them.

In response, he told her that he was genuinely trying his best and wasn't out to manipulate her at all.

pixabay | risham10--4898399

From his stated perspective, the problem was that his work couldn't please her due to her "impossibly high standards."

Although she didn't buy this, it gave her an idea.

As she put it, "Anyway, this might be petty but I decided to give 'believing him' a try."

By that, she meant that she decided to pretend that nothing was wrong when he seriously messed something up.

One example saw him get bleach stains on her favorite black dress. And while she might have been visibly angry about such an incident in the past, she instead decided to wear it to his next family event.

He thought it looked bad and ended up trying to fill in the bleach marks with sharpie, which made the ruined dress look even worse. But all the while, she told him that she understood accidents happened and said she wasn't upset.

But it wasn't until the boyfriend's mistakes started to affect him that he realized he created a monster.

When he forgot to refrigerate a dish the woman had cooked for his work function while she was out, she said it was OK and it should be fine to eat.

This reaction frustrated and horrified him, as did her insistence that they could eat out of the dishes that got dirty dishwater inside of them after he put them upside down in the dishwasher.

As the woman put it, "He said that no it was disgusting, and I said it was really no biggie."

After these incidents, the woman noticed that he stopped being so lazy with chores and dropped the act.

Nonetheless, she feels conflicted because she considers her actions petty and dishonest and wanted to know if she was in the wrong for making him careful what he wished for.

But as far as the Reddit community she reached out to was concerned, the only person she's being mean to is herself for not just leaving him.

As for her plan itself, they couldn't help but be impressed.

In the words of one user, "Once he realized you werent going to play along and be his mommy, he decided to be an adult. It was a learning experience not being petty."

As another person put it, "You’re a genius. It’s not petty. It’s refusing to let him externalize the costs of his behavior to you. It think it’s brilliant and you should keep doing it whenever this comes up."

h/t: Reddit | lappisl

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