Fellas, if you're already having relationship issues and your wife thinks you haven't been making an effort, maybe don't pretend to forget her birthday for an entire day in order to plan a "surprise." That's the lesson of this cringey TIFU Reddit post.
OP knows he hasn't been "the most attentive husband lately." His wife has talked to him about making more of an effort in their relationship, and he has tried really hard. But his latest decision, to act like he forgot her birthday all day so he could plan an elaborate surprise, was, to put it mildly, not his best move.
He said his wife loves surprises, so even though they've been having problems lately, he decided to surprise her with a romantic night full of dinner, flowers, and presents. She had to work during the day so he was going to spend the whole day planning.
"I decided, being the idiot I am, to pretend that I had forgotten my wife's birthday just to make the surprise, well, even more of a surprise," he writes. He didn't mention his wife's birthday at all in the morning. She went to work and spent her whole day thinking her own husband had forgotten her birthday.
He thought that she'd be ecstatic when she got home from work, opened the door, and saw everything. Needless to say, it didn't work that way.
His wife was supposed to come home after work around 4 p.m. But 4 p.m. came and went and she didn't come home. After a while, he texted her to see where she was, still not acknowledging that it was her birthday. She didn't respond. He called and she didn't answer. That's when he got worried.
He texted her to ask if she was OK, and she replied that she couldn't believe he'd forgotten her birthday after all the talks they've had and issues they've been working on. You'd think this would be the point where he'd reveal his actual plan...but this guy is truly something else. So he didn't. He just told her to come home so they could talk about it. "Big mistake," he wrote. No s--t.
She said she "done talking" and she started mentioning that maybe they should divorce. He tried to call her but she wouldn't answer. So he panicked and started explaining everything over text, sending her pictures of everything he'd planned and set up around their house for her birthday.
"I just broke and started crying," he writes. "After what felt like the longest wait of my life my wife comes home." She was crying. They both apologized to each other. He said it was his fault and they spent the night crying, holding each other, and eating the cold dinner he'd prepared hours before. It was definitely not the birthday either of them had imagined.
I'm glad for them that they made up, but whew, what an error in judgment there from ol' OP. How did he think this was a good idea at all?! No matter how much his wife likes surprises, he was already in trouble for being thoughtless in their relationship. He couldn't have thought that she'd just be mildly annoyed that he seemingly forgot her birthday for the entire day.
"Never, ever act like you forgot your partner's birthday," one wise commenter wrote. "Get her/him a small gift, wish them happy birthday...but do something! That way you don't hurt their feelings that bad and you still get to surprise them."
"Oh dear..." another concerned person wrote. "Well, I'm glad you two are working things out. But FYI, the fact that she mentioned the D-word means this is far from the first time she's thought about it. From here on out, you need to step your game up."
This is very true. It seems like they are working on their relationship and getting help, but if they're going to make progress, OP has to realize that he can't do things like this...ever. Hopefully this incident has helped him learn his lesson.