Members of a popular internet forum rallied around one sibling who couldn’t help but laugh when their brother’s divorce proceedings took a turn for the worse.
In a viral Reddit post published on r/AmITheA**hole, Redditor u/Sail_Essay6483 (otherwise referred to as the original poster, or OP) said their brother was anticipating a major windfall at the end of his marriage and detailed the tense moments in which that anticipation was extinguished completely.
Titled, “[Am I the a**hole] for laughing at my brother while he’s going through a bad divorce?” the post has received nearly 9,000 upvotes and more than 1,000 comments in the last day.
“My brother is going through a divorce right now,” the OP began. “I know it’s been a rough time for him.”
Explaining that their brother recently moved back into their family’s home, the original poster said their parents contributed money towards a lawyer and were just as hopeful about the potential pot of gold waiting at the end of the proverbial rainbow.
The original poster also explained that, because their sister-in-law works a well-paying job, their brother assumed he would be entitled to alimony payments and at least a portion of the former couple’s shared home.
However, after just one meeting with a lawyer, his dreams of grandeur turned into his worst nightmare.
“He found out that you can’t get alimony in a divorce if there was infidelity,” the OP wrote. “My sister-in-law is an architect and she makes bank. My brother thought he would get alimony but he was dumb enough to cheat on her.”
“When he told me the law will deny him alimony I laughed,” OP wrote. “It was probably the wrong reaction but he was so confident he would be able to get a big payment.”
“He has been knocked down several pegs and completely screwed himself over,” OP added. “It was almost an involuntary reaction because I just couldn’t believe it.”
In 2014, researchers from the University of Washington and University of California Los Angeles estimated that, in the United States, between 20 and 40 percent of marriages fall victim to extramarital affairs.
A year earlier, a study published by the National Library of Medicine revealed similar findings.
However, while 31 percent of couples agreed that infidelity was a major contributing factor in their divorce, nearly 89 percent of individuals reported the same, indicating a glaring lack of transparency between former partners and even more stunning prevalence of cheating among married couples.
Extramarital affairs can be devastating—eroding trust and causing emotional trauma.
Extramarital affairs can also be costly, especially when serving as the catalyst for divorce.
Adultery laws in the US vary on a state-by-state basis and hinge on which partner a judge determines to be at fault for the separation.
In some states, like California, Oregon and Washington, there is no requirement to prove fault and as a result, adultery plays a small role in divorce proceedings.
But in other states, like Florida and South Carolina, adultery qualifies as proper grounds for divorce and can dramatically affect alimony payments and other forms of spousal support, according to Divorce Net.
Throughout the comment section of the viral Reddit post, Redditors acknowledged the severe financial impact of infidelity and called out the original poster’s brothers for believing his cheating would be handsomely rewarded.
“He had a life where his wife [provided] the home and the income and HE decided to destroy it by cheating,” Redditor u/Key-Bit1208 wrote in the post’s top comment, which has received more than 14,000 upvotes. “Him pouting over the reality of having to deal with the consequences of his own stupidity is laughable.”
Redditor u/Careful-Listen2277, whose comment has received nearly 4,000 upvotes, echoed that sentiment.
“It is funny, hilarious actually,” they wrote, nodding to the OP’s laughing reaction. “He tried to f**k his ex wife over first, he thought he would get money and a house from her, but he f**ked around and found out the hard way.”
“Like he actually thought he could take HER house,” they continued. “The entitlement is rocking.”
In a separate comment, Redditor u/notforcommentin2 offered a simple assessment of the viral post.
“I would have laughed too,” they wrote. “This is 100% his own fault.”
“Hello consequences my old friend,” Redditor u/whameekablamee chimed in, sarcastically.
Newsweek reached out to u/Sail_Essay6483 for comments.