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I want to know this too, I suspect there is a gap and OP will be early 20s.


I thought it read like two 14 year old got married.


Felt like a boomer married his daughter to me


It's probably fake like the majority of posts on this sub.


I’m wondering how she texted him if her phone was in the pool.


She says at the end she has an old spare, could've worded that better though.


An old phone that she had a different, still working SIM card in that she was able to access within the time frame of him being away from the house? I have an old phone but I'd either have to dive into the pool, figure out how to get my SIM out of the wet phone or drive to my local phone shop to get a new SIM. I'm usually too trusting with AITA but definitely think this is fake.


If she has an iPhone, she can text from an iPad or an apple laptop. I’ve texted people from my laptop while my phone was running an update on more than one occasion.


You can also do this with android phones if you have a PC


I know a lot of people use "texted" to refer to messaging you can do with wifi like whatsapp.


As a tech, I would have to say it is not that hard to get a sim out of a phone. And like some people pointed out, she could have used imessages from her computer.


Sim isn’t instantly destroyed when in water. She could easily have gotten the phone, taken the sim out (it’s really simple), dried it off if it was even wet, and put it straight into the other phone. Ive even done this before.


Oh believe me, I've had the misfortune of encountering grown ass adults like this!


I married one! He didn’t start that shit until we were married and then he started making “rules” for me to follow! This is straight up abusive behavior!


I've got to the point Im so cynical that I just assume everything I see on social media is fake. It's no big deal though. No skin off my nose and just passes 20 mins whilst I'm avoiding working on my podcast or something. Lol


Oh same here. I'm just here to be entertained.


I call bullshit. How'd she text him?


OP Said that she was using her old phone to text him, not the phone he threw in the pool.


You can text from a computer or tablet


Lol and yet I have to scold my 50+ parents to get off *their* phones when I visit them in my hometown.


It is a ridiculous situation but it seems at the least verbally abusive. He can’t dictate how she spends her time and destroying her property for “disrespecting his time and presence” is ridiculous. NTA but both immature


Exactly, he feels ENTITLED to her full attention immediately whenever he feels like it. I've been with someone like him before where they want you to exist to meet their needs 100% of the time without having your own stuff going on. It gets worse. It's not unusual that he would escalate after marriage since she is less likely to leave now. He's destroying her belongings and trying to convince her that demanding 100% of her attention whenever he likes it is reasonable.


He's way more at fault but she definitely has some fault too. You don't look at your phone scrolling Instagram if your partner (or anyone for that matter) is talking to you. That's basic fucking manners. I understand his anger but throwing the phone in the pool is absurd. That said, she needs to grow tf up and start behaving properly.


I mean, but you also don't get to come into a room and interrupt someone who is doing something and insist on their full attention for something you admit isn't important. That is also basic fucking manners. You ask if you they are busy or have time to talk. I would also bet that many of the times he's gotten upset that she was on her phone while was talking also involved him interrupting her and expecting her to stop what she was doing immediately and pay full attention to him for no reason. It's a control thing. Like did my mom need to grow up because she didn't hang up the house phone in the middle of a conversation and immediately pay attention when we ran in, saw her on the phone, and started yelling "Mom! Mom! mom!!! MOOOOOOM!" for no real reason anyway? That's essentially what this dude is doing except he's a grown adult man, not a child. And you don't make unilateral rules for your spouse. You have an adult conversation about it, maybe go to marriage counseling. You don't announce "one reasonable rule," create a situation to justify getting mad, and destroy their property. No wonder she doesn't want to pay attention to him.


That’s what I think too.


Two of my friends have ADHD & find it impossible to focus. They have to be doing something else in order to focus. So I’ve gotten used to them scrolling while having a conversation. It’s like they have to keep their hands occupied on something else to listen. None of which changes the fact this guy sounds terrifying!


Came to make sure someone mentioned this. My husband is ADHD and is always on his phone. He’s explained it to me so I’m understanding. Occasionally I have to get his attention, and sure, that’s kind of annoying, but I can’t imagine taking his phone away and destroying it out of spite.


Yes! Same for me! And my partner has ADHD as well and will get on a tangent and be talking for long stretches about things not really relevant to me that would be mind numbing lot boring if I tried to focus ONLY on that but if I’m doing something else while listening I can still be a sounding board without dying of boredom. Also, I understand being out on a date or in another social situation and insisting on putting phones away. However, if we removed the phone and replaced it with any other activity it would be ludicrous for a partner to demand that anytime they have something they want to chit chat about you need to stop whatever your doing and give them your undivided attention.


My siblings used to do this when I was reading-- walk in, see me with a book, start talking to me, and get mad if I kept reading or told them to leave me alone because I was doing something (reading). Just because it's a phone in this case and not a book doesn't make it okay!


Yeah thats pretty much it. If I don't have something to fidget with I get antsy and even worse attention span.


This is me. My husband understands that I have and ADHD and may need to focus on something else to hear what he's saying. Eye contact can sometimes make listening difficult. However, if my husband specifically said he felt hurt by this, I would definitely compromise.


As soon as I started reading the post I wondered if OP has ADHD.


Except that in this case she was using her phone BEFORE he started talking to her. Where was his respect for what she was already doing?


Agree 100% with u/Kikuzzo. She is rude. He overreacted. They are both immaure.


He is ABUSIVE. That isnt "immature"


Right? Like if my boyfriend has to ask me a question, I’ll look away from the phone, but if we are in the car and he or I are talking, I’ll be on my phone scrolling for the next song to play or something. You gotta learn when a good time to be on your phone is and when isn’t. Casual conversation laughing with friends, ok, whatever, as long as others are on their phone too. But if they ask you to focus on them or they aren’t on their phone, just put the phone down.


He walked into a room, had nothing to talk to her about, and expected her undivided attention as he just *existed*. That’s a far cry from “when I get serious with you you can’t pay attention to me”. He’s controlling and borderline abusive.


Yeah he definitely set up this situation just so he could punish OP -- he walked in while she was already on her phone, and responded that he didn't have anything important to talk about, so of course she didn't pause what she was already doing before he decided to come monopolize her attention. He saw an opportunity to give her a test he knew she would fail so he would feel justified.


yeah this is what im confused about bc theyre acting like he was trying to havw a genuine conversation with her but he literally said he had nothing to talk about yet still expected her to put her phone down. and then he threw her phone into the pool like a child


✨neurodivergent people who have to multitask exist✨


Nevermind that she was in the kitchen minding her own business when he waltzed in and threw her phone in the pool. I get frustrated when I have guests who are on their phone the whole time, but this is straight up abuse




When listening to someone talk, watching a movie or listening to like a podcast, I have to keep my hands busy and my eyes ‘engaged’/focused on something or I just drift off into my own thoughts. I still hear the person talking, but it’s all background noise that I can’t concentrate on. I literally cannot focus if my eyes and hands aren’t otherwise occupied, even if I’m just tapping, folding a piece of paper, smoothing a hem, whatever. This could be something like that…I agree completely that being on the phone is rude when someone is talking when it’s important, but agreed, they both suck here. He acted like a spoiled 5 year old with that tantrum and should ABSOLUTELY replace her phone. Then they need to seek counseling!


Forget the post for a while, the need to constantly keep your hands and eyes occupied is a textbook symptom of ADHD. If you were not aware of this, take a quick look at the symptom list on Wikipedia or elsewhere.


Good gods, in my house growing up we used to have an absolutely hard and fast rule that no phone calls were allowed during dinner (this was pre-cell-phone era). Now? Now my parents are on their phones constantly during dinner or wherever (or were, mom has dementia and can't really do phones anymore), and what's more, they now insist that they never had that no-calls-during-dinner rule ever in the first place! Parents. Whatcha gonna do.


Is she his wife or daughter?? “Rules?” He gave her rules??


Lol my spouse would have came home to everything they own at the bottom of the pool


And everything I own out of the house


My dad once threw his dinner at the wall because of an argument him and my mom were having. He left for work after dinner (long haul trucker) and when he came home 3 weeks later, all that was in the house was a lamp, his lazy boy and their waterbed cause it didn't fit in the truck. Sadly, my mom ended up taking him back (and is threatening divorce again now, 30+ years later), but we did live in an apartment without him for about 8 months.


yes, please tell us this OP! it sounds like you’re both either very young, or like there is a large age gap


He’s 31. She didn’t say how old she was.


This whole thing is written like she's 20. I bet there is a huge gap. Regardless, they both suck. It is extremely rude to be on your phone while someone is trying to talk to you. It's also extremely rude to throw someone's phone in the pool. His request was not entirely unreasonable, but his reaction was. She is delusional if she thinks that she can actually pay attention and play on Instagram. He sounds very clingy and demanding, like he needs an insane amount of attention. She seems rude and dismissive.


This is not a both sides thing. He destroyed a phone because of an unimportant conversation. No one has any right to unilaterally make those kinds of rules.


He is much more at fault because his wasn't a "request" as you put it. He put it down as a rule. Don't diminish what he did. He also walked into a room when she was already on the phone, announced it wasn't important, forced it out of her hand, then ran out of the room. If they were sitting down having a conversation and he was UPSET, then yeah it would be E S H. The second he made this about rules, him laying his hands on her, and him destroying property, making this a false equivalency is problematic.


I would be cleaning out the bank accounts and running from this asshole. NTA


There's a reason she gave his age but not her own.


Also more INFO.... How in the hell could you text him after he left the house and threw your phone in the pool? Total bull shit story or way over exaggerated if you ask me.....


She says she’s using an old phone. Or if they’re on iPhones, you can text from an iPad or a computer


Try reading the last sentence of the post.


Husbands don't make "rules" for their wives. Wives don't make rules either. He is not your boss or your Dad so claiming he gets to make rules that you have to obey is not a good look. You aren't perfect either; it is rude to be looking at your phone when someone is talking to you. I am not sure either of you are ready to be married.


It is rude to interrupt someone who is occupied and demand their immediate undivided attention for something of no importance.


Yeah, this, exactly. Now, if she is constantly on her phone during time they have agreed to spend together (eating dinner together, dates, playing a game together, etc.) then I think it's fair enough for him to complain/ask that she change that behavior (though NOT to just make rules, and certainly fucking with her possessions is waaaay over the line. But it's fair to prefer to have some time with no phones and to work together as a couple to figure out when that time is). But if he hates when she's on her phone while casually chatting, than he can just damn well not casually chat with her while she's already on her phone. Married couples who live together need the ability to do their own thing, too. She's fine with him chatting with her while she's on her phone, but if he's not okay with that setup than he doesn't get to just interrupt what she's doing whenever HE feels like it.


Yeah, there is a huge difference between deciding as a couple that certain times of days or events are "phone free" and prompting the other to follow through. "Hey, can you put your phone down, we decided that dinner time was phone free" vs "anytime I demand your attention, you must put your phone away immediately, and focus solely on me, or I will punish". I would also advise OP, in general, to reflect upon what it means when they won't get off of their phone when someone asks. This is coming up in my extended family, and there are family members that feel ignored and unloved when the other person can't put the phone down for 5 f-ing minutes to have a dedicated conversation. Husband is definitely wrong in this situation. OP's "I can multitask" comment reminded me of how hurt some people can get when you multitask around them.


It sounds like husband setup the situation so he could toss her phone in the pool.




Except in this case, she was already on the phone when he walked up and he got super pissy because she didn’t automatically put it down and give him her undivided attention. She said in the post that she had work on the phone, what if she’d been working when he decided to be king baby and destroy the phone? This isn’t about his feelings but his need to be in absolute control of her life and time.


The husband was the ass in this situation, 100%. Barring having a large wound or other medical emergency, than you can't walk up to someone else and expect them to pay you 100% attention. OP stated that is was ok for her to always be on her phone during conversations with others, as she was good at multi tasking, and I pointed out that she may want to evaluate how other people read the situation *if other people are complaining.*


If this appeared to be even a semi-functioning relationship, I’d agree! It’s good to try giving your partner your undivided attention when they want to have a conversation! In this case, though, I think OP is describing signs of an abusive relationship that is likely to escalate, and I wouldn’t want to encourage her to think any part of his behavior is reasonable, or any part of his reaction is her fault. He created a “rule” with no input from her, decides to test that “rule” by interrupting her and demanding she stop doing what she’s doing to focus only on him for no reason, devised a punishment that involved physical destruction of her property, and then left, and doesn’t think he did anything wrong. There’s something *seriously* wrong in that course of events, and OP needs to recognize how deeply inappropriate her husband’s actions are. I don’t even know if I would recommend therapy at this point - his behavior (to me) seems so incredibly controlling and demanding I just don’t know if this relationship is salvageable.


Oh yeah I mean OP is AN asshole but not (for the purposes of this sub) THE asshole


Totally agree! My husband sometimes gets annoyed when he comes into a room and starts talking to me and I don’t immediately stop what I’m doing to pay attention to him. And this is what I say… you are interrupting me, wait a second before you demand my attention. He would never take my phone out of my hand though- let alone damage it in any way. What he does, which he thinks is *hilarious* is to start saying absurd and ridiculous things- “hey I was thinking we’d sell the house and move to Thailand.” “On my way home from work I bought a new car” “I’ve decided to quit my job and become a farmer” etc…


Thats actually kinda cute and funny


Funny - this is something I tend to do - just come into a room and start talking to my husband, and every single time he puts his phone down and gives me his undivided attention. Can’t even express how much I appreciate it, how much it means to me. Working on doing the same when he talks to me, I tend to be more absent-minded and it doesn’t register sometimes in my head that someone is talking to me while I’m doing something on my phone.


I don’t know why people don’t understand this? When my wife is occupied with her phone I ask something to the effect of “hey hon, when you get a minute can I get your attention?” and it works out well pretty much every time. It doesn’t matter if she’s scrolling social media, or reading an important article. He is not entitled to her attention when he interrupts her whenever he feels like it.


This is what turned it to NTA for me. If he’s talking and trying to have a conversation with her and she’s screwing around on her phone, I’d be irritated too. Hell my husband and I both have that bad habit and Iike to think I can multi task but I 100% can not. That said coming in and DEMANDING her attention is not the biz. And then ah int a temper tantrum where he destroys property? No. Now I imagine that their dynamic is something around…. OP fiddling with phone Hubby comes in and starts talking at her. OP may or may not be following what he’s saying. Because she isn’t staring at him rapt he’s pissed that she’s not listening. Which isn’t great either but can be solved with communication. I’m the meantime biggest AH is the person who destroys property


ESH He needs to replace your phone. You should each pay for your own divorce lawyer.


If you have ADHD it might be easier for you to listen while scrolling through Instagram. But if OP was reading an article and he sat down and demanded she stop, it doesn't matter whst form of media, husband is in the wrong. NTA OP: unless you have a prenup, what husband is your and what is your's is his if you are legally married in the US. Just go replace your phone if it wasn't water resistant.


>If you have ADHD it might be easier for you to listen while scrolling through Instagram If you have ADHD you'd also find yourself hyperfocusing on random videos while scrolling instead of listening to the person talking to you, and while this is technically no issue if the person talking to you is not saying anything particularly important, it can still get very exasperating for the person if the person they're chatting to always randomly stops replying to the conversation and doesn't even realise it. If you have ADHD and have a conversation you think you need to better listen to, I suggest fidget toys, not social media. Social media is extremely good at catching your already fickle attention.


I have ADHD and if the topic of conversation is understimulating , it may look like I’m listening but I won’t hear a word you say because I’ll be lost in the abyss of my own mind. Demanding that I sit and pay attention while you talk about something boring is basically torture. I might be able to catch some of what you say if I’m looking at something interesting in my phone because at least that would keep my mind in the present. I would not be captivated by random videos though, I absolutely despise watching videos, they are boring and obnoxious, that’s why I brows Reddit instead of ticktock or whatever. I know some people with ADHD probably feel the opposite, but videos don’t fully occupy my mind because they just require passive attention instead of full engagement the way reading does.


I find with my ADHD that if I’m forced to focus on one thing, I absolutely can’t do it.


Did I miss where OP said she has ADHD? Or is this coming out of a left field assumption? If someone comes up to me while I'm in the middle of something else and demands my *undivided attention* for nonsense, I'm not giving it to them. Just because someone decides to talk at me doesn't mean they deserve for me to be totally engaged in the "conversation." It's nonsense, and they interrupted my other activity for it. That's bullshit. Even if my other activity was just scrolling on my phone, I was busy doing something and you don't get to interrupt that for stories about your latest bar crawl and expect me to fully engage with you.


I what world do you get to demand attention when you want it?


You’ll find this world in the head of an abuser.


Maybe during a serious discussion but if he is droning on about something why should she have to stop everything she's doing to listen? If I had to put my phone down and listen carefully every time my husband talked about one of his quirky interests and I don't understand half of what he's saying because I'm not a graphic artist and have no desire to be I would feel hmmm annoyed to say the least. Especially since like OP I am perfectly capable of scrolling social media and also getting the gist of what's being said to me. We are so attached to our phones these days that I would go so far to say that MOST people can pay attention to another person and their phone at the same time. This is an issue of the husband being controlling. He damaged her property because she "broke" and arbitrary and self centered "rule" he made up. Just the fact that he feels that he can make rules and she HAS to follow them is appalling and alarming.


Agree. The issue is not very unusual, but both of them are acting immature (he is the most immature). It *is* rude to look at your phone when you're having a conversation with someone. Eye contact is an important part of face-to-face communication and if someone is looking at their phone when you talk, you would assume that they're bored. If you are bored by everything your husband says, why did you marry him? If he was more interesting before, maybe try doing something about this issue. Saying you like multitasking isn't good enough. Your husband is beyond rude though. He is demanding that you put your phone away instead of asking you to. I would completely support him if he said that this is a dealbreaker for him and you need to change your behaviour to stay married to him (although if you have done this during your whole relationship, why has he not had that talk before?), but setting up rules and enforcing them by throwing your phone in the pool is not constructive, not fair and very disrespectful. ESH.


Given that he interrupted her to talk and she didn’t invite conversation, he doesn’t have the right to demand her immediate attention. You can’t force someone to converse and then be mad that they aren’t engaged. I fully support blocking off couples time for them to interact phone and distraction free but he doesn’t get to force her to stand at attention and listen just because he opens his mouth. It’s called the art of conversation and I get the distinct sense that he doesn’t try to engage her with conversation that she’s also interested in.


I agree but also wondered if he just never shut up and this was over just trivial crap. This relationship is a no-go either way tbh.


I was a bit the fence about this one because it is very rude to be looking at your phone while engaged in conversation with someone. However your husband's behavior tipped it for me from E S H to NTA. First because he was rude to demand you put your phone away instead of just asking to have a conversation when you have a few minutes, at which point if you agree you have time to talk then you should put your phone down but you are also allowed to say not right now or can we talk later. Second he became full AH when he told you it was a rule and clinched it when he destroyed your property. You are not a child, he is not your parent that gets to set rules and punish you for misbehavior. That behavior should never be accepted in a marriage. He owes you the money for a new phone. And he owes you a separate apology for treating you like some misbehaving child and "teaching you a lesson". You are still wrong to not put your phone down while talking with someone. Dont be rude to people in the future, but in this case it feels like he demanded your attention right now, not asked and you were not obligated to give it to him.


I mean even if done to a child, this behaviour is toxic and abusive. Who the hell escalates straight to destroying property like this.


Honestly, sounds like it was done to a child. I notice op doesn't mention her age... My guess is 21


>Honestly, sounds like it was done ~~to~~ by a child.


That too


so? Does that make it okay? Does her husband being older than her mean that he can be abusive and it's totes okay? Do most 21 year olds have a thousand dollars in their bank account to burn every time they behave like a snotty little poptart? No. And they shouldn't have to. If you have a problem with your spouse, you talk to them about it and figure out a compromise that works. Not "my way or I destroy your most expensive piece of property that also doubles as the only way most people can contact help" nope.


I think they were implying that there's maybe a big concerning age gap between OP and her husband.


No, it´s implying older men look for young women for a reason and maybe this is the case.


You haven't been around AITA for long, have you? Some of the worst offenders here have a relatively high physical age and a relatively low mental one.


Being rude is never an excuse to destroy someone else’s property. People also don’t get to set “rules” for adults.


Good points. I was also on the fence with this one, having been around people who have trouble sitting through a movie at the cinema without scrolling their phones (Top Gun recently); we've sat down at restaurants and they're scrolling... Conversations can be ugh sometimes. I'd say the husband was fed up... But his ultimatum and destroying the phone are too much. Controlling AF. And this is 6 months into married life? Yikes!


Yes and no. Id say rules and boundaries are fine to set so long as the options are equatable. “Put down your phone while I talk to you or else I’ll throw your phone in the pool” is ridiculous and not at all something an adult should do to anyone. What the husband should have done is had an honest conversation and be like “i dont like when you’re on your phone when I talk to you. Makes me feel like you dont care about what I have to say. I wont make you not be on your phone, but Im not gonna continue talking to you if you’re on your phone”. Cuz at that point, the husband is changing his behavior to respond to OP’s behavior and kind of passes on the choice of how to respond to the wife. The husband could go up to OP, ask to talk, and then if she says yeah but stays on her phone, he can say “oh, looks like you’re busy, ill talk later”. But yeah, how the husband behaved sounds super controlling and toxic.


I disagree I don’t think it’s inherently rude to be on your phone during a conversation. Especially if they were already on their phone before I started talking; it’s far ruder to assume whatever they were already doing is less important than what you’re gonna say imo. Even if we were all agreeance she was rude for not immediately putting her phone down every time he’s near her (let’s be honest that’s what he’s asking) This “rule” is abusive, it sets up the punishee to have anxiety whenever the enforcer comes into the room and wait for a word to be spoken so they can hide their phone in fear of retaliation. This whole story gives me a weird power play from boyfriend like “alpha male won’t be disrespected you can’t do what you want to cause I’m in the room I should be your sole focus”. You can’t not look at your phone every time the person you live with talks to you it’s literally impossible. That means she probably wouldn’t be able to answer any texts or ever scroll social media I mean when me and my partner are home we talk the entire time. To me this seems like an isolation technique to get her to slowly start losing contact with people she otherwise is close to instead of feeling slighted by a phone being out.


And get her used to obeying him. This isn't the last rule this mighty, alpha male is going to set and punish disobedience for. It worries me for her.


I find someone on the phone while having a conversation the highest level of rude. Like if it’s a hey OP running to the store do we need anything, yeah be on your phone. If we start having a conversation I’d like to know I have your full attention not half of it while you mindless look at instagram. It shows me instagram is more important than the living person trying to interact with you. Now OP and husband seem to have 10x more issues that need to be addressed, but just to provide my take on the being on your phone part of your comment.


But how about starting a conversation when someone is on the phone, do you consider that rude as well?


It can be rude! That’s why context is super important! If I’m talking to you and you’ve been scrolling through Tiktok for an hour and don’t acknowledge it, yeah that’s pretty frustrating. But it’s not just the responsibility of the person talking to communicate. If I need to finish up on my phone I’ll say “hold up I need to finish this real fast” and with the opposite I can say “hey can you pause for a moment I need to say something”. Don’t know why reddit wants such black and white thinking. It’s rude *sometimes* depending on the context. And let’s be real, we’re all on our phones all the time. If we all have to wait until the people we know are off their phones we’d never speak to each other, so I do think if you’re just scrolling through social media you should probably prioritize the person standing in front of you in real life. None of this even touches on destroying the phone though that’s a different level of messed up. ETA: fixed grammar lol




I definitely understand wanting someone's full attention when youre in the middle of a convo. But assuming RIGHT NOW they are just doom scrolling so need to put it down for a convo at a moments notice seems off to me. People need to ask if someone has time for a serious convo and stop assuming whoever someone is talking to or whatever they are looking at online is automatically less important.


I am someone who needs constant stimulus. If I’m not on my phone I still can’t make eye contact because I have to fidget with something. If someone tells me it bothers them I’ll make an effort to put the thing down and try to focus solely on them but it is very hard for me to and I end up fidgeting again, like picking nails if I put away other things which brings me back to people thinking I’m not listening. My fiancé didn’t get it and didn’t like it for a while but never demanded I put it away. We downloaded tappy on my phone so I can mess with that while also looking at him to have a conversation. Throwing her phone.. that’s absolutely horrible for something that she may genuinely struggle with controlling too. I think he does want her to isolate herself and lost it because it’s not working


"Friday, I was in the kitchen scrolling through my phone when he came and sat across from me. He told me to put the phone down. I asked why and whether he had something serious to talk about but he said no, nothing serious and reminded me of what he told me about the phone while talking rule. I was like "pssshh no"." What gets me about this interaction is he came into the room and sat down and TOLD OP to put the phone down. He then said he had nothing serious to talk about (I'm actually unclear whether he had ANYTHING to talk about, or whether he just wanted OP to get off her phone merely because he was in the room), and then reminded OP of a "rule" he made, seemingly without her agreement (because that would have been an consensual compromise between two adults). He is not her daddy, making rules for other people to follow at his command. I agree with your statement about the husband making a power play. They've been together for over 2 years, and now he wants to flex only 6 months into the marriage with this stupid shit. OP, I'd rethink this relationship and whether you want a daddy who dictates and punishes, or a life partner who supports and is open to compromise. OP, I know this is unsolicited relationship advice, but I urge you to do some self-reflection, because although your husband was wrong to unilaterally make rules for you without your consent or agreement and punish when you don't follow those rules, it is rude to be on your phone if someone is trying to have a conversation with you. If you're using your phone for work and too busy to talk or just don't feel like talking, let the other person know, and arrange to talk later. Otherwise, if you're just scrolling through IG, have some decency to give that person your attention. Nobody wants to be with someone who prefers their phone over the company of their partner. That gets old very quickly. If things don't work out between you and your husband, keep in mind that the next guy probably won't like it either if you choose your phone over him.


Isn't it just as rude to walk up to someone and expect their full attention for literally no reason, when that person is already occupied? OP's husband is an insecure wee little man who has issues not being the center of everyone's universe from the sounds of it.


That's what gets me. I've had people start talking to me when I'm doing something else, like reading or something else that would consume my total attention. Then get upset that I didn't immediately notice and start talking.


I don't get that at all. It happens to me sometimes too, I have ADHD, so if I can get myself to actually focus it's like a hyperfocus and nothing breaks through, and people get PISSED when I don't notice them because I'm reading a book or on reddit. How about ya go find someone who's body language indicates they're open for conversation


Thank you! I don’t understand why blaming her (even with a NTA verdict) is one of the top comments. If it was an incredibly important conversation and she was blowing him off not listening, okay, but she explicitly says he’s demanding she drop everything to listen to him talk about a game or a trip his friends took awhile ago.


It's rude when you're in a meeting or smth, but expecting etiquette when you ask your wife to buy lettuce the next time she goes shopping is a bit overboard. We talk all the time with our partners. Not each of them is "let's sit across the table and put our phones down" type of talk


One very important thing that should be taken into account about it being rude when someone is looking at their phone while engaged in conversation. If someone is already engaged in a conversation and then take out their phone and start looking at it during the conversation then yes that is very rude in most cases. But, OP was already looking through her phone and then her partner decided to show up and engage in conversation. As far as I’m concerned in this case OP using her phone during this scenario isn’t rude, her fella should have the patience to wait until OP was done doing what she was doing on the phone if it’s a problem for her fella. Either accept it and have the conversation, or wait, OP in this scenario was already engaged in what she was doing on the phone before her fella came to engage in a conversation. I don’t find that to be rude, I find it more rude that OP’s partner demands to interrupt what she was doing without either accepting it or waiting until she finished what she was doing. Agreed though, if it was a case of OP getting the phone out during a conversation that’s taking place then yeah that’s rude, but the scenario in the post isn’t rude in regards to OP’s actions.


You don't destroy property because someone is rude.


Info: how old are you OP? (Asking because you mentioned your husbands age but not yours, wondering if there's an age difference)


Even if she's only 10 years younger which isn't a big age difference is still a big life and power difference. I agree with others, sounds like op is a lot younger than hubby


That's what I was thinking. If she was 20-24 it wouldnt surprise me if the 'hubby' intentionally started dating her *because* of the power difference


That’s actually a really good point


The top two comments are about a potential age difference, which does seem quite possible, but I wanted to jump in because OP’s takeaway might be we think it’s her fault for being immature. That is absolutely not the problem here (and I don’t think that’s what the top two commenters mean to suggest). Regardless of age difference, husband paying to replace the phone is a bare minimum response. I’d seriously consider the D word with a spouse who felt they are entitled to be this controlling. They are building up an abusive power dynamic where they get to make rules for OP and impose consequences on OP to satisfy their whims.


I think that both of you are assholes, him much more than you though. What he did was incredibly out of line and would be a dealbreaker for me. But I could also never be together with someone who doesn't put their phone away while taking to me. Especially if I've already voiced how much it annoys me. Seems super disrespectful and just plain weird to always be on the phone. That would also be a dealbreaker for me. So, my conclusion: Both of you sound like shitty partners, but his behaviour makes him more of an asshole.


I wrote about that in grad school. It's called the split attention effect. No, you can't focus on two things at the same time. You're only focusing on the one thing - it doesn't matter if you think you can. It's also really disrespectful. You need to pay attention to the thing that you care about and in this case of looking at your phone while having a conversation with your spouse, that is where you're going wrong.


Sounds like an interesting topic! And I completely agree. I gotta say that in the past I sometimes was guilty of scrolling through Insta etc. while I was on the phone. I try to avoid that and be more present in my conversations now. Nobody wants to be on the receiving end of "Mhmmm, okay".


Yeah it is actually really interesting. You can physically complete multiple tasks at the same time. But cognitively you can only focus and understand one at a time no matter what people here are saying including OP. And the ones that say that they could do that are also the ones that admit that it's really irritating for them when other people don't make eye contact and look at their phones when they're having a conversation.


As much as a I've heard about it and read about it also (though probably not quite to the degree you have), I just can't agree from personal experience. I find it very difficult to concentrate on something if I'm not multitasking. My brain just turns off or gets distracted. Almost like how you can't ride a bike if you're going too slow - you need some momentum to stay upright. I play DnD with my friends and they have even commented on the clear improvement in concentration when I'm also playing my DS. Some people find it a bit rude at first, but my friends who know me actually prefer that I have some small extra thing to do because they can see that I'm just way more focused. I think it's similar to how I absolutely cannot complete work without music on. So yeah, there are studies, but not everyone is neurotypical and fits the stereotypes.


Agree wholeheartedly with this. Husband feels disrespected over and over and over by OP even undermining him when he wants her full attention. His reaction is overboard, but I do get his anger and frustration. I would be very frustrated too if my fiancé does that. It’s extremely rude and disrespectful. ESH


MORE INFO: How old are you OP?


OP has made 4 comments (6 hours ago at time of my comment) and not stated ages. Sounds like a farce to me. Or both OP and husband are their own kinds of arseholes in an age gap relationship. Granted I'm reaching, but it would fit.


How was she able to text him? I thought he threw her phone in the pool. I understand some phones can withstand being dropped in a puddle, but being fully submerged in the pool? Did she drive right in and grab it? Did she text him through FB? This isn't making sense. Edit: my dumb ass glossed over the last line.


Reread. Last sentence says old phone.


We are going to keep asking the question until you answer OP 😔


Oh girl, you need to get out. Six months in and he's already setting rules, taking your things, punishing you, and limiting your ability to interact with others without his permission. NTA. Please get out before this escalates further.


The timing is significant. He probably thinks that 6 months in, she's going to be too invested in staying, and too embarrassed to leave. He can get away with abusive behaviour Prove him wrong, OP!


Exactly! Also, I love your name!


This. He's testing boundaries to see what he can get away with before he escalates.


Especially if the rule was set after marriage. They dated for 2.5 years. When did this become a rule?


Agreed. The rule setting thing is so…that’s too much. It’s one thing to talk and mutually agree to a set of behaviors (ie “when we chat, let’s focus on each other and not our phones” or “we eat dinner together without phones so that we can enjoy each other’s company”) but straight up “I’m your husband/wife so put your phone down cause I say so” is so weird to me. Where’s the discussion, compromise and mutual understanding?


My thoughts exactly. He thinks he is in charge and sets the rules. If she stays, she's telling him she agrees.


I think you should just take the loss and replace the husband all together




Girl it is just starting. He is going to have a bunch of more rules for you. NTA. Get out!


NTA. But he is abusive and controlling. Also, this is kind of a violent gesture to do. Maybe reconsider if you want to be with such a toxic partner


This! My ex did things like this quite a bit. While I believe you could have probably gotten off social media a bit more when speaking with him, his reaction was beyond over the top. I had remotes thrown, cans of slim fast hit walls, jewelry broken, and the outbursts only escalate.


INFO : >He got outside and threw it in the pool while I watched. > >I was mad I texted him that You texted him how ?!?


I have 2 phones but the one he threw in the pool is the one I use all the time, and also for work, emails, social media etcetera etcetera.


I would throw his laptop in the pool myself. Live by the sword, die by the sword.


OP have you ever looked into getting assessed for ADHD? Because the need to occupy yourself while talking to people is a common sign. I have this too, and probably got it from my father - he used to read while mother was talking; drove her nuts but he insisted he could do both. I sense that's what's happening here.


Lol.. Too bad you didnt just pull out your second phone and start scrolling again in front of him. Sad.


She still has an old phone.




I honestly assumed she had apple products and used computer or iPad


She had a backup old phone


Finish reading the story maybe?


NTA. Why did you marry him? He sounds abusive, controlling and toxic. He HAS to replace the phone.


OP your behavior did not deserve a violent, destructive response. Period. NTA. I’m pretty sure destruction of property is a felony over a certain amount, and a phone might be expensive enough to hit that. Unless your husband has a criminal record however the police will probably table it as low priority. You’d have better luck with small claims court. Did you know that destroying a partners phone is a common form of domestic violence? I’m linking the below resource in case you want to examine any other forms of his behavior. Good luck. https://dvipiowa.org/resources/am-i-being-abused/


“Look what you made me do” is textbook abuser talk


ESH. You, because you can't put your phone down for even 5 minutes to talk to your husband. It *is* extremely rude, whether you think you can multitask or not. It makes it looks like you really don't care about what he has to say, "serious" or not. If my BF constantly had his nose in his phone whenever I wanted to talk, I'd feel like he couldn't care less about me or what I want to say. On the other side of that coin, he went way too far by destroying your property like that. SO's aren't supposed to punish each other. From the way you described it, it doesn't even sound like he tried to have a civil discussion with you about it, just let himself get angrier until he did what he did. But maybe he did try to have a discussion but couldn't because you probably had your face in your phone, and you didn't mention that discussion here.


FInally, someone who gets it! I hate it when I’m trying to talk to someone and they continue scrolling through their phone the entire time. If what you’re doing on your phone is truly important, ask me to wait until you finish, then put your phone down. If someone can’t be bothered to at least pretend to care that I’m talking to them, I’ll leave. They can cozy up with their phone when they want some company. ESH. OP, no, you aren’t listening to your husband when he’s talking to you—you probably don’t even hear half of what he’s saying. You’re an AH for being so rude, defending your rudeness, and dismissing the fact that he feels ignored, but he’s also an AH for trying to set a rule to make you to listen to him and then destroying your phone. The two of you have some real issues you need to work out.


Take his phone and put it in the pool


ESH. Your husband acted like an immature asshole. And you shouldn't have gotten married in the first place, since you were already in a committed and exclusive relationship with your phone.


"I'm a multi-task kind of person and so I could focus on doing 2 things at once like checking my Instagram while listening to him." And this is why ESH.


Right? How rude. It sounds like she is constantly “multitasking”. Maybe he is sick of her only half listening to him. ESH. He tried to talk to you about this several times. He was wrong to ruin your phone…. But Can’t you just put the phone down for at least one convo a day?


ESH you shouldn't be together. You can't be an adult and have a real conversation with someone, and he has anger management issues.


He shouldn't of thrown your phone in the pool but he is correct your face being stuck to a phone while someone is talking to you is extremely rude I absolutely hate it when someone does that myself so I can see where he is coming from. Instagram isn't more important than your husband trying to have a conversation with you


Yeah like Even If OP is able to multitask they really much send the signal to their husband that they’re not fully engaged in the conversation. Which does get super annoying and can be super hurtful. I totally agree that husbands reaction was out of line. However OP needs to realize that multitasking while in a conversation can be rude AF


ESH. You are being disrespectful and you are giving more attention to your phone than your partner. If you can't even put down your phone for 2 minutes while your SO talks to you, then you clearly have a phone addiction. You probably should seek help before it consumes all your friendship and relationship. Edit : I feel very old now, when I see all those "NTA". Since when is it OK to be on your phone while SOMEONE IS PHYSICALLY IN FRONT OF YOU AND **TALKS** TO YOU ?! This is so disrespectful.


But she was on her phone first. Where’s the respect in him walking over and demanding that she listen to him right then, because he wants to tell a story or whatever? She checked that it wasn’t important, he was just demanding attention because he had decided to “set a rule” and was provoking her. Yes it’s annoying to always have the other person on their phone, and she needs to set or agree to some reasonable limitations on that rather than claim she’s just “multitasking”, but his demand was disrespectful.


I am sorry, I cannot understand a world where scrolling mindlessly on IG is more important than your partner. Call me old school, but human being IMO always come before any social media. I am in love with my partner. Talking with him is NOT a chore. If I am on my phone and he starts talking, dropping my phone to interact with him is just... normal ?!


It sounds like you’ve never had someone keep deliberately interrupting you because they want attention. Now maybe he wouldn’t do that if OP was better at fully giving attention sometimes, but him having declared his “rule” is still controlling.


Would you drop your partners phone in a pool though if they were on it and not giving you their full attention? I hear what you are saying and get that but destroying your partners property deliberately is not ok. And that is what this post is about.


Oh, no, destroying the phone was not ok. That's why I said ESH.


Take Instagram out of it for a second. If she were reading a book and he walked into the room and demanded she put it down to listen to his story would he be justified in throwing her book into the pool if she didn’t listen? She was already engaged in an activity when he interrupted her and demanded that she stop doing it to pay attention to him. Why is she expected to stop whatever she’s doing the second he decides that whatever he has to say is more important?


Maybe you'd be less in love with him if he demanded one-sided conversations and destroyed your valuable possessions when you didn't obey. This is a very common opening scenario for abuse in a relationship - they've recently made a big commitment, he starts setting ultimatums, and when she doesn't "obey" she is punished. The abuse starts with the destruction of an object, because it puts the partner on edge, and then gradually escalates into physical abuse. A phone is a common object to focus on, because by making her afraid of using her phone, he isolates her from other people. It's her work phone, so he can jeopardise her job. If you are in a relationship based on mutual respect, I'm amazed that you are more shocked at her scrolling on her phone than him setting ultimatums and then destroying the phone.


I am old. The thing is, she was already engaged with the phone when he demanded she drop what she was doing and pay attention to him. He didn't ask her for her attention, he told her. That puts people off. Again, he's not her mommy and she's not some bratty kid


I give it a NTA because she clearly can give 200% to conversations, when it’s an actual conversation. Him just rolling up oh her while she’s doing her thing, and expecting her to drop everything and give him 200% when he just wants to talk *at* her ain’t it my guy. (Her example of how he wants to talk about video games or his past trips with friends is what gives me the impression that he isn’t talking with her, just at her which is probably why she doesn’t feel like she needs to be off her phone)


10000% agree. Sounded like he wants a captive audience to talk about his fishing trips with his friends or whatever, not an actual 1-1 conversation with her. And on his schedule, not hers. My husband and I are frequently doing other things while we chat. Doing dishes, have the TV on, playing a video game, folding laundry, watching the kids play. I never just stare at his face while he tells me about a game he wants to play. If we are out on a date or something, sure. Not in our daily lives.


ESH. Nothing excuses his behavior but just get off the damn phone for 2 minutes. There’s absolutely nothing important on your instagram. Again, there’s no excuses for throwing your phone in the pool but it’s clearly a sign that this issue has made him really bitter over the last couple of years. I mean, you can’t even have a casual conversation with your husband about his life without looking at some inane bullshit at the same time??? Both of your behavior is childish, though his is obviously worse.


ESH. Him much more than you. You suck because: 1. No, you can't multitask, that's just utter bullshit. People don't work like that, and those who think they do are lying to themselves. 2. You ignored that he is upset about you being on the phone all the time. Why didn't you talk to each other, try to understand each other, and reached a solution that makes both of you happy? 3. You again ignored him when he put up his ultimatum. Why the everloving hell did you not sit down with him and have a talk about it right then and there?! 4. The way you talk about him is full of contempt. Who says their spouse throws a "hissy fit" unless they are already actively planning for a divorce? He sucks because: 1. Unilaterally setting rules and putting up ultimatums is not how it works. Maybe from his perspective there's no other way to get through to you, but those are not among the options that you can choose. Divorce, however, is. 2. Destroying the phone is abusive. 3. After destroying the phone, he takes off to sit in a Starbucks and sulk?! WTF? ​ Honestly, I wonder why you even got married, you don't seem to like each other at all. Like, I am kinder and more forthcoming to random strangers on the bus than you two are to your life partner.


NTA. Your husband is controlling and irrational. Might be time to get some couple's counseling.


No, divorce. She gotta run now that she can.


ESH. neither of you respect each other at all. He has told you numerous times he wants your undivided attention when talking. It shouldn't have to be a life or death situation for your partner to get your full attention. That being said, his response was completely inappropriate and overboard. Neither of you seem to like each other very much.


NTA. Stop focusing on the phone and focus on the bigger picture. He has you so caught up in the content of the phone that he's obscured the real issue in layers of complexity about the details. (I haven't scrolled comments, I'm 1000% sure that others are saying what I'm about to say, because AITA contributors are awesome at pattern detection.) The bigger picture is - this is abuse. Demanding your rapt attention is one sign. in this example, he was interrupting your phone scrolling, not you disengaging from a conversation with him to look at your phone. Next, he "set a reasonable rule" - you're not a child and he doesn't get to set rules for you. Couples can have mutually agreed upon "rules" or guidelines, but this wasn't mutual or agreed upon. That was controlling. Next, he destroyed your property. That's abusive. Full stop. Finally, he's unremorseful and is turning it around on you. "If you'd have complied, I wouldn't have had to destroy your property." If he'll go to therapy and do the work, maybe this is salvageable. But start connecting with a domestic violence resource in your area for support and to decide if you want to stay. This might seem low level right now, but this is how it starts. Identify it and start making your own decisions and plans.


NTA he may ask for more respect, he communicated his wishes. He thinks its disrespectful to zombie scroll while he is talking, I get it. I think its rude as well. However what he did is low key abusive (using force to get your phone out from your hand without your consent, walking out ignoring you and destroying your property. He wants respect, while he is disrespecting you. This is felony as well, like good luck OPs husband explaining it on a small claims court.


ESH Yes he went way overboard and shouldn't be demanding or giving ultimatums. But frankly, it's rude to sit staring at your phone when someone is talking to you. My ex husband used to do it and it pissed me off every single time.


ESH. You aren’t “multitasking”, you’re telling him he doesn’t matter enough to you to get your full attention when you two are having a conversation. Yes, he’s an AH for throwing your phone in the pool but under the circumstances, that was probably the best intervention he could come up with. People who are telling you this is violent/abusive behavior are doing a great job escalating this issue into territory it doesn’t belong. It sounds like he’s been trying to get you to recognize that you’re addicted to your phone for quite awhile, and you’ve been brushing him off. Get into marriage counseling and see if a therapist can help you understand why you’re not communicating better. And put the damn phone down.


My ex had an issue of destroying my stuff before he eventually moved on to hurting me instead 💁🏼‍♀️ RUN.


I do get him getting worked up over the fact that you keep staring at your phone whilst he engages you in conversation. But he set a *rule*. A *rule*. Like how *controls* or even *owns* you. NTA. Get reimbursed and get away from him.


ESH. Of course he shouldn’t throw your phone in the pool, and I do agree he should replace it. But he also shouldn’t have to throw your phone in a pool to make a point when he has repeatedly asked for your attention. Constantly looking at your phone while your husband is trying to talk to you is rude, and you probably aren’t the great multitasker you think you are. You just don’t want to listen to his stories.


NTA OP: please ignore all of the E S H & even Y T A comments here! I'm so incredibly angry at all of the absolutely foolish people leaving these comments. Here's the thing: everything OP describes of her husband paints the picture of a controlling, demanding, abusive man. He walks into a room where she's engaged in an activity and *demands* her full attention *or else* he will perpetuate violence against her (such as violently seizing and destroying a valuable possession from her). He regularly demands she drop whatever she might be doing to give him full attention, even if he is simply relaying information about a game or some other trivial activity or subject, with no respect or regard for her time or interests. He has demonstrated selfishness, an impulse to control (making demands, imposing rules and punishments), and a willingness to engage in violence (destroying property). Yet, the comments here are all 'OMG, you look at your phone?? What are you? A phone addict??? You have an old phone in your house???? You're such an AH!' How can so many people not see how ridiculous this is?? My abusive ex ripped my glasses off my face and snapped them into pieces, but I had my old ones from my last prescription and I'd done *something* to piss him off, I'm sure, so what? I deserved it? Or, if I didn't deserve *that*, I'm still a lesser AH? Can y'all just stop saying things that can and will give victims of abuse an excuse to stay with their abuser because 'oh, all these people are right! He loves me and just wants my attention! He was right all along, and I just needed to learn my lesson. I thought I deserved better, but clearly I was wrong...'


ESH - it's not too much to ask for you to put your phone down and give him your attention, but he should not have destroyed your property. I am also a multi-tasker. I have ADHD and I struggle to focus on 1 thing at a time. Early in our relationship my husband told me that he felt ignored when I would look at my phone while he talked. I respected his feelings and now when he begins talking, I lock my phone and set it down until the conversation is over. He appreciates it and feels like I'm actually paying attention to him (even if I can pay attention and do a million things). Pick your battles. Is your IG really more important than talking/bonding with your husband?


ESH. He was out of line for throwing your phone out like that. At the same time - I agree with his overall issue, just not how he resolved it. I'd simply be ending things/divorcing. That said, thankfully that's not an issue - it shows up long before that, so I'd never end up in that situation. I can't stand people that are more glued to their phone then "real life".


NTA. I have serious concerns about anyone staying with a person who overreacts like this.


INFO: wherever you’re speaking to him, whether about something serious or not, does he put his phone down? Even if he does, you’re still NTA b/c what he did was controlling and way OTT, but I’m curious if he treats you how he’s wanting to be treated. Also, keep insisting he replace your phone and make it your hill to die on. Tell him the two of you will sit down and discuss mutually agreed-upon ‘rules’ about phone etiquette, but only once he’s replaced your phone. He doesn’t get to give you an ultimatum that you didn’t agree to and then act like it’s your fault when he intentionally ruins your property. With “hill to die on” I mean small claims court and divorce. If he thinks he can just make an ultimatum and then ruin your stuff, he’ll keep doing it.


ESH. * Your husband is asking something from you. He's asking you to be present when he's talking to you. He's trying to establish a boundary, he feels disrespected when you ignore him for your phone. It doesn't matter if it's not important to you, he's sharing his life. You're his partner, and he wants the small things in his life to matter to you. Blowing him off and making fun of him is a shitty, immature thing to do. * Throwing your phone in the pool is a shitty, immature thing to do. Some people have a difficult time giving rapt attention. There's a discussion of compromise that is completely missing here. * Calm down you ninnies screaming abuse. OP is so hooked into the grid she has two fully functioning phones. It's not right that he destroyed her phone, but you would be surprised the extremes people go to when their boundaries are repeatedly violated. Yes his reaction was toxic. One toxic action does not an abuser make.


ESH. It's rude to scroll on your phone while someone is talking to you, it doesn't matter if you can or cannot multitask. It's rude. But the fact that he's setting up "rules" for you, his wife, is concerning. Also info: how old are you? You mentioned your husband's age but not your own.


ESH - Look. One of the indicators of whether a marriage will last is how often both spouses give their attention when it is asked for. Yes even about stupid things. (Don’t ask me how many times I have heard about the Kieth Richards autobiography…) So frankly, I don’t have high hopes for you guys and your marriage. But phones are not toys now. They are tools and we use them for everything. He absolutely overreacted. But you basically told him, while you are still in the “honeymoon phase” that when he asks for your undivided attention, you are unwilling to give it.


I’m going to rock the boat and say YTA. There is nothing more annoying than a partner who is looking at their phone all the time. There is no such thing as “multi tasking” this is a load of BS. Your brain can only do one thing at a time - when you are doing two things your brain is switching between them. So you are only 50% in the conversation and 50% on the phone. When you focus on one thing you aren’t focusing on the other thing - it just keeps going until you switch back to it - so you are missing half the conversation. It’s insulting to the person you are with. Sometimes you should just put the damn phone away. Throwing it away was an over reaction but he is obviously frustrated that you aren’t interested in him enough to be bothered putting the phone away. You opened your post with this statement. You know it annoys him yet you still do it. This is the shit that ends relationships - all the little resentments that build up over time. I didn’t see any evidence of abuse here just a partner who is starting to resent you.


✨✨✨ divorce ✨✨✨