Members of a popular internet forum were left bewildered after one man explained why he was forced to put a lock on his refrigerator.
In a viral Reddit post published on r/AmITheAhole, Redditor u/Hangry_manstarved (otherwise referred to as the original poster, or OP) said all was well after his girlfriend moved in with him—until a peculiar behavior became the catalyst for a full-blown war between lovers.
Titled, “[Am I the ahole] for blocking access to my food?” the post has received more than 10,000 upvotes and 3,400 comments in the last seven hours.
“Everything was fine in the beginning,” OP started. “But once we started seeing each other more frequently I noticed her bad habit.”
Writing that his girlfriend consistently steals a chunk of whatever he’s eating, no matter the setting, the original poster said he quickly became fed up and decided to confront the issue head on.
“Every time we went out and food was involved she would sample my food before I got to it,” OP noted. “I had several talks with her about this, but she said it was cute and not sinister.”
Despite having “several talks” about the repeated acts of thievery and reaching an armistice, the original poster admitted that recently, the couple’s living arrangement took a turn for the worse.
“I made a cake [and] after dividing it into eight I left it in the fridge when I went out with a friend,” OP wrote. “Imagine my surprise when I saw that each piece had a bite taken.”
“I was angry. I told [my girlfriend] that she embarrassed me and we needed to figure out a solution,” OP continued. “[The] next day I bought a lockbox for the fridge.”
“She was livid…last night, she broke the lock and had taken a bite out of all my snacks and two slices of baguettes [that were] in there,” OP added. “I told her to pack her stuff and leave.”
Last decade, a study published by a British biology journal revealed that mammals experience higher oxytocin levels after engaging in cooperative activities, specifically the exchange of food between partners.
Four years after publishing, parenting website GoodToKnow made reference to that exact study and deduced that, because food sharing causes spikes in “love hormone” levels, stealing a bite from a partner’s plate is often a sign of affection and an indicator of a thriving relationship.
But for some, even the smallest sample can cause major problems.
Recently, Newsweek has reported on multiple Reddit threads detailing food-stealing controversies including other locked refrigerators, cake-related breakups, and one disgruntled poster who resorted to eating in his car after his girlfriend demanded she eat the first bite of every dish he orders or makes.
In each case, Redditors responding to the threads were overwhelmingly opposed to any food thieves and provided staunch support for those who have taken extreme measures to protect the meals they hold dearest.
In the case of the original poster, the reaction was largely the same. However, due to his girlfriend’s final act—taking a single bite of everything in the refrigerator—Redditors encouraged the original poster to reevaluate his relationship and consider what might be waiting for him in the future if it continues.
“[Not the ahole],” Redditor u/Meemaws_BearCheese wrote in the post’s top comment, which has received nearly 17,000 upvotes. “Also, major red flags here.
“She’s ignoring your boundaries…trying to get you to doubt yourself, your ability to set boundaries, and your emotional reactions,” they continued. “This person is bad news. Get away from her.”
Redditor u/cptspeirs, whose comment has received more than 4,000 upvotes, offered a similar response and speculated about the motive behind the biting.
“This behavior from OP’s [girlfriend] is beyond bizarre,” they wrote. “It’s super controlling. It feels like she’s marking her territory.”
“Taking a bite out of EVERY slice of cake doesn’t show love, it shows selfishness,” Redditor u/Odd-Jackfruit-2375 echoed, receiving more than 6,500 upvotes. “She will likely be a controlling, possessive partner…and you’d be so much better off not just kicking her out but ending the relationship as well.”
Newsweek reached out to u/Hangry_manstarved for comment.