Internet Drags Woman For Criticizing How Small Business Treats Employee

Thousands of commenters were irate after one business owner explained their mother’s disgust for how they treated their only employee in a viral internet post.

Initially posted on Reddit’s widely-popular r/antiwork (the subreddit boasts 1.5 million members), the now-deleted thread authored by u/theroyaldan received 38.8K votes and nearly 3,000 comments in just six hours. In their original post, u/theroyaldan said that they went home for the holidays and were discussing their small business with their mother when the conversation became intense.

Explaining that they own a small accounting firm with their wife, u/theroyaldan said that they employ just one employee, and that they are accommodating of his inconsistent schedule.

“He’s a single dad with weird custody hours, so we’re really flexible,” the Redditor explained. “He doesn’t have set hours unless previously arranged and can come and go as he needs.”

“We pay him well for our small town and are giving him a 10% raise as of the new year,” they added.”

u/theroyaldan said their generosity infuriated their mother.

“My mom was livid. Talking about how we are over paying him, that we need to have him buckle down on his hours and find childcare if needed,” they wrote. “That she was never treated that way when she was working and that’s what’s wrong with people these days.”

While the debate over which of the last handful of generations rages on in holiday conversations and viral Reddit posts, so does the debate over childcare and its accessibility to American workers. Although u/theroyaldan’s “small accounting firm” accommodates their sole employee’s “weird custody hours,” that is not the case for many workers across the country.

According to the Harvard Business Review, childcare costs employers and employees billions of dollars every year. And, because of the ongoing global pandemic, it has become harder to find and harder to pay for.

Holiday argument
One Redditor said their mother was furious about how they treated the only employee at their small business.
JackF/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Before the pandemic, “inadequate childcare was costing working parents $37 billion a year in lost income and employers $13 billion a year in lost productivity,” the Harvard Business Review reports. And with schools across the country closing down during the pandemic, parents were forced to find childcare on their own.

Nearly 63 percent of parents the Harvard Business Review surveyed said they had difficulty finding childcare during the pandemic, and 33 percent said it was “very difficult.” Data shows that, on average, the pandemic caused working parents to lose eight hours per week due to a lack of child care.

Despite the response to how they treat their only employee, u/theroyaldan assured that their accounting firm is doing well and said they steered the conversation in another direction following their mother’s explosive reaction. However, others were quick to call out the original poster’s mother for her “bitter” behavior.

In the post’s top comment, that has received 17.1K votes itself, u/OswaldReuben denounced the mother’s justification for her sentiments.

“The old ‘I had it bad so other don’t deserve better’ mindset,” they wrote. “It’s poison.”

u/adjustingstuff echoed u/OswaldReuben, and said that OP’s mother should have reacted in the exact opposite manner.

“‘Because I never had this kindness afforded to me, no one else can have that kindness.’ Like WTF kind of internalized bitterness is that,” the Redditor asked.

“Your mother should be happy that she somehow raised a kind person,” they added.

u/theroyaldan responded to a handful of commenters, and provided additional details about the situation, but many already made up their mind about the situation — OP’s treatment of their employee is commendable, and their mother’s assessment of that treatment is dead wrong.

“Congratulations on being a better person than your mother,” u/blade_smith_666 wrote.

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