A woman shares a conflict that arose during a visit to her boyfriend’s family, where his youngest sister-in-law asked if she would take a test to prove she was a good enough homemaker for their family’s tradition. The woman, who values her career and doesn’t enjoy house chores, refused, leading to an argument that ruined their visit, with her boyfriend suggesting she was in the wrong for not going along with the tradition.
My boyfriend Eric (29M, fake name) and I (27F) have been dating for three years. For context, I have met his family and they are friendly. We don’t meet them very often because they live in my bf’s home country. I don’t want to reveal country names either for privacy reasons but my bf and I are of different nationalities and we both work in my country.
The conflict happened during our last visit last weekend. We have been looking up houses to move in together and engagement rings. While we were having dinner, we mentioned this to his family as it’s a big step in our relationship for us(we are not engaged yet.) His parents and brothers expressed their happiness for us then out of nowhere his youngest SIL asked “So is she going to take the test?”
I asked “what test?”.
In summary, bf’s family has this tradition where the future MIL tests future daughters-in-law to see if they are good enough for her sons. Apparently, his mother and aunts went through the same test. The tests include how clean they can keep a home, how well they can cook, their manners, etc. Basically life skills most people learn from childhood. I found it ridiculous because 1. If I’m good enough for my boyfriend, he should be the one deciding it. and 2. I don’t fit in their targeted category. In his mom’s words, you can’t be a good SAHW and SAHM if you can’t be a good homemaker and she wants to make sure of that.
To be clear, his mom and all three of his brothers’ wives are SAHMs and although I respect their choice, I am not quitting my career and did not under any circumstances make my bf think I could compromise on that. I hate house chores and I would rather buy homemaking gadgets and hire staff no matter the cost than have to do chores myself. I told my bf’s mom all this and it caused an argument that eventually ruined dinner and in extension our visit.
Bf doesn’t care whether I’m a working wife or a SAHW but he thinks I should have just done the test because “it’s just a test” and it’s not like they would reject me if I failed it. He thinks it’s a fun tradition that everyone was looking forward to and I should have gone along with it anyways.
My boyfriend thinks I’m the AH and suggested I make this post. If I really am the a**hole, I’m sure you guys will let me know so am I?
EDIT: Adding this as it’s been coming up. I know disclosing the country may or may not bring up some unwanted arguments that will violate the rules here. But just for context, it’s a family tradition, not a national culture.
Here are a few comments on the story where it was originally posted: