Remote Worker Backed for Locking Husband Out of Home Office: ‘Disrespect’

Internet commenters were left shaking their heads after one disgruntled employee revealed why they were forced to put a lock on their home office door.

In a viral Reddit post published on r/AmITheA******, Redditor u/DaliaRod547 (otherwise referred to as the original poster, or OP) said they installed the lock to keep their husband from barging in during work hours but detailed their disappointment upon discovering their protection from repeated disruption was quickly removed.

Titled, “[Am I the a******] for how I reacted when I found out that my husband uninstalled my office lock?” the post has received more than 9,000 upvotes and 1,500 comments since November 27.

“Ever since I started working from home[,] my husband has started treating it as if I’m not ‘really’ working,” OP began. “He believes [work from home] isn’t as much of a real job as leaving the house and driving to your workplace.”

Continuing to explain that their husband would frequently interrupt their work, even going so far as to send in their children to distract them, the original poster said they were left with no choice but to install a lock.

Unfortunately, their efforts to keep their husband and children away from their office were all for naught.

“I have grown tired of the constant barging [in] so what I did was purchase a lock and lock the office,” OP wrote. “He found out and uninstalled it.

“He said that it’s his house and that I CANNOT lock him out of any room in it,” OP continued. “I went off at him, just screaming my head off telling him that he was [jeopardizing] my livelihood.

“He started ranting about how I’m being cruel for accusing him of such things and selfish for even entertaining the idea of keeping him and the kids out and ignoring them,” OP added. “He stormed off and left and had his mother lecture me about how I’m being [unfair] prioritizing work over family.”

For decades, remote work was a luxury only afforded to some.

But with the onset of COVID-19 and pandemic-related shutdowns in 2020, remote work became widespread, with employees across the U.S. leaving cubicles for home offices, dining tables and makeshift living room setups.

And while millions of remote employees have returned to office buildings, recent data published by the Census Bureau indicates that the number of people working from home in the U.S. tripled between 2019 and 2021.

Remote employee stressed over repeated interruptions.
Remote employee stressed over repeated interruptions. Members of Reddit’s r/AmITheA****** forum were outraged after one remote worker revealed why they installed a lock on the door to their home office.
fizkes/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Despite the growing prevalence of remote work, those who’ve returned to the office or continue to work outside of the home often have trouble understanding that working from home is still work.

“Family members might view a work from home job similar to a household task—something that can be any time and isn’t pressing,” Amy Morin, editor-in-chief of Verywell Mind and LCSW, told Newsweek.

“They may not recognize deadlines, meetings, and constant communication are more common than complete flexibility for a work from home job,” Morin added.

For remote workers with enough space for a home office, a closed door can sometimes be enough to alert family members that it is not time for socialization, nor for menial household tasks that can likely wait.

However, many working from home are constantly bombarded with inquiries and requests, simply because they are home, and, therefore, accessible to those around them.

“Employees might feel tugged in several directions at once,” Morin told Newsweek. “While they may want to run an errand or hold a lengthy conversation, doing so makes it difficult to focus on work.

“It can feel quite frustrating as the work from home employee might feel ineffective as a worker and disrespected as a family member,” Morin added.

Throughout the comment section of the viral Reddit post, many Redditors echoed that sentiment, expressing disgust at the level of rudeness exhibited towards the original poster.

“Your employment is at risk [and] so is your marriage,” Redditor u/DesertSong-LaLa wrote in the post’s top comment, which has received more than 15,000 upvotes. “His actions disrespect you on so many levels.

“I am sorry you are going through this but it may be the wake-up call you need,” they added. “If you both cannot put forth basic courtesy and effective communication then you and the children will lose.”

Redditor u/rhomboidus, whose comment has received more than 4,000 upvotes, offered a more blunt perspective.

“He’s being a colossal ass and intentionally trying to sabotage your career for some reason,” they wrote. “Jealousy, misogyny, insecurity, or just plain laziness maybe?”

“He’s clearly got his mother in his ear whispering that [work from home] isn’t a real job,” Redditor u/rainyreminder speculated, receiving more than 1,500 upvotes.

“Get a big door stop. Shove it under the door from inside the office. Hide it when you’re not in there,” another Redditor suggested. “Alternatively, get rid of [your] husband. I’d have a really hard time looking at a man like that with any kind of love or respect after this story.”

Newsweek reached out to u/DaliaRod457 for comment. We could not verify the details of the case.

If you have a personal dilemma, let us know via life@newsweek.com. We can ask experts for advice on relationships, family, friends, money and work and your story could be featured on Newsweek’s “What Should I Do? section.

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