Internet Slams Man for Enforcing 'Ridiculous' Household Rules on Grieving Brother-in-Law

A man has turned to social media for thoughts on his so-called "house rules," which he wants everyone in his household—including his grieving, 20-year-old brother-in-law—to abide by. Readers, however, have criticized the man's "ridiculous" demands, arguing that they are not appropriate for an adult guest.

Shared in Reddit's "Am I The A**hole" forum on Tuesday, the post generated an intense response from readers, racking up over 9,500 upvotes and 4,200 comments at the time of writing.

In his post, the anonymous 30-year-old man (u/Thrill-Ville1304) explained that his brother-in-law, "Sean," moved in after the death of his (and his sister's) father a few months prior.

"He is the private type and keeps to himself. He goes out and never [says] where he's going or how long he'll be out, eats at random times during the day, wears [earbuds] while me and the kids are sitting with him," explained u/Thrill-Ville1304.

"See, all of these are uncool behaviors and a bad influence on my children," he continued. "I've already talked to Sean about certain house rules I have and how he was violating them...but now he knows and still nothing's changed."

The night before writing the post, Sean reportedly came home at 10 p.m. "I wasn't thrilled with that because he knew the rules but he said that he was an adult and I shouldn't be policing him," said u/Thrill-Ville130, who argued instead that the issue stems from "the fact that he's repeatedly disrespected the homeowner and the rules."

As a result of the incident, the man reiterated the "house rules" to Sean—including being home by 8 p.m. each day, "not eating at random times," "and not using his electronics...when the family is gathered to spend time together."

Sean objected to the rules, labeling them "unreasonable." His sister, the Redditor's wife, reportedly agreed.

"I explained to her that I'm just making sure the kids won't be influenced by her brother's reckless behavior," wrote u/Thrill-Ville1304. "She called me a control freak and told me to get off her brother's back and leave him alone."

Readers appeared unsympathetic to the man's predicament and instead offered their support to Sean, his brother-in-law.

"Your wife is right," said u/PotentialityKnocks. "Why on earth should a 20 year old have a curfew and have his eating times policed?"

"Leave that boy alone," offered u/accidentally-cool. "Not only is he an adult, he is grieving the loss of his father."

Others pointed out that 8 p.m. is an early curfew for most teenage minors, let alone 20-year-olds.

Several more called the man a "control freak."

When faced with a grieving relative, many experts recommend primarily focusing on the needs of the bereaved. Specifically, Harvard Health Publishing said to "listen well instead of advising" and "avoid judgments."

Newsweek reached out to u/Thrill-Ville1304 for comment.

Upset Couple
A man went viral on Reddit after explaining that he wants his 20-year-old brother-in-law to obey his strict house rules. A stock photo of a man and woman sitting on a couch. fizkes/iStock / Getty Images Plus