A female boss who was forced to bring her toddler into work has been resoundingly backed online after a male employee was let go for effectively telling her child to “shut up.”
In a post shared to Reddit’s ever-readable “Am I The A**hole” subreddit, a user posting under the handle ManVsDino explained the circumstances behind the worker’s firing.
Writing under the title “AITA for getting a man fired for telling my toddler to shut up?” the woman explained that she owns a company with two friends from college – and she co-parents a four-year-old daughter with one of them.
Recently she found herself in a tight spot after her daughter’s dad, “Mike”, got into a car accident while the company’s other owner, “Eric”, was out of town. “My nanny is on holiday break, so it’s me taking care of my daughter and trying to run a company,” she explained.
Due to Mike’s accident, she was required to take the lead on a project he was working on, which required her to go into the office with her toddler. It proved tricky to say the least.
“My daughter is already upset because she knows her dad is hurt,” she said. “Getting her loaded into the car to go into the office was messy. She refused to wear matching boots and is in an elf outfit.”
She said the whole time they were in the car, her daughter was “crying and upset.” Things got worse once they were in the office after her daughter realized she had “left her dinosaur in the car.”
“My kiddo will not stop crying because Sara (the dinosaur) is in the car alone, and Sara might not be able to breathe,” she explained.
Already “mortified” at what is going on and desperate to get her daughter home, the situation then took a shocking twist when a worker at her company walked by and told to “shut my kid up” adding “this is an office, not a daycare.”
The woman, understandably, saw red, telling the man: “This wouldn’t be his job if it weren’t for this child’s father or me, and he could be the one to shut up or find a new job.”
Another colleague, called Adam, intervened but the disgruntled worker refused to back down, telling Adam “he’s trying to work” and her daughter “won’t shut up.”
He then told Adam he needed to get her “out of the office.” “I’m like this is my office, and if you don’t like it, you can leave,” she wrote.
Other Sexist Remarks
At this point, he returned to his desk, while the woman decided to leave, with Adam promising her he would “handle it.” It later emerged that the man was fired for “insubordination” not only over the exchange but also for some “sexist remarks about women in business.”
Despite the severity of the fallout, the woman felt no qualms about what had unfolded. “The man was rude, and to be honest, no matter who I was, shouldn’t be telling a child to shut up,” she wrote.
The people of Reddit had little sympathy for the worker’s plight. “You don’t go stomping up to a stranger to tell them to ‘shut their kid up,'” CodeVerity wrote. “If you don’t know them, then you should quietly (and privately) speak to a higher up because you never know who you’re talking to or about!”
Electrical-Date-3951 commented: “I think anyone of us would have silently been pissed if we were trying to work and there was a crying kid in the office. The difference is, we would have kept our mouths shut, especially if we didn’t know the circumstances.”
Pandoraclove, meanwhile, said the man’s response was indicative of something else. “Some sexism is so entrenched, that the people who practice it honestly cannot imagine a woman being an executive, manager, anything other than a nanny or a maid, and if they are dealing with children, that demotes them even more in terms of their value in society,” they wrote.
Despite efforts to change working cultures, sexism and discrimination are still issues faced by many female bosses. According to the Young Women’s Trust, a third of female bosses say sexist behavior still exists in their organization.
Tarilyn13 argued there was a constructive way for the man to deal with the issue – he just chose not to do it. “Personally, I would have talked to whoever my boss was, and told that person I couldn’t concentrate on my work because of the kid,” they said. “Maybe I could have taken a break or something.”
Newsweek has contacted the original poster for comment.