Internet commentators rallied behind a 21-year-old woman whose police-themed photoshoot upset her now ex-boyfriend’s feathers.
In a viral Reddit post published on r/AmITEA**hole, Redditor u/ExtensionPresent15 (aka the original poster or OP) told her she dated her high school sweetheart for four years before he decided it was over — and called in the authorities to ensure that the divorce went smoothly.
Titled, “[Am I the a**hole] for doing a police photoshoot because of what my ex did?” ... has received more than 11,000 upvotes and 950 comments in the past day.
“I… just got out of a 4 year relationship with my… [high school] darling,” OP began. “He decided he was done and it broke my heart.”
The original poster continued to explain that the breakup was painful but amicable, saying her former partner kept things cordial and slept on the couch in their shared apartment.
Until he had to leave.
“He showed up at about 7pm…with his friends and two police cars standing in the parking lot out front…with their lights on all the time,” OP wrote. “I was mortified. Our relationship was not violent or dramatic.
“I still don’t know why he wanted police… but I spent the week answering questions about it from everyone we know,” OP continued. “The following weekend my best friend showed up announced with a bottle of wine and two Party City police suits to cheer me up.
“We took all kinds of crazy pictures of her handcuffing me…it was the first time I smiled since the breakup and I decided to post some funnier ones,” OP added. “I woke up the next morning to texts from him and a bunch of his friends saying how awful I am and that I should be ashamed of myself for making fun of him.”
Messy breakups are not a new phenomenon.
But with the continued proliferation of social media platforms, the potential for catastrophic breakup has grown exponentially.
Three years ago, Colorado University researchers concluded that, due to inhumane algorithms, social media prevents divorced couples from continuing as they would in previous generations.
Where living, breathing people would be expected to possess the resources not to invite a friend’s ex to a get-together, or to pull out photos of a friend’s ex to remind them of all the good times they shared, many algorithms are designed to let users of social media content see the people closest to them, including recently deleted romantic partner.
“Most of today’s relationships also exist online, where they are represented on social media platforms through tagged photos, mutual friends, and entire conversations that form a digital timeline,” according to the study published by Colorado University.
“As a result of persistent connections, even algorithms designed to encourage memories and well-being… can produce insensitive encounters long after a relationship is over,” it continues.
Despised social media users aren’t without options, though, and most platforms have both mute and block buttons for a reason.
In the comments section of the viral Reddit post, many Redditors echoed this sentiment, calling out the ex-boyfriend of the original poster for complaining that the breakup was becoming a public spectacle after he already made it that way himself.
“[Not the a**hole],” Redditor wrote u/Beancaped in the top comment of ..., which has received nearly 16,000 upvotes. “He’s your ex now, he’s not allowed to respond to your messages.
“But even if he did, you were just trying to have fun,” they continued. “Well done for bouncing back!”
Redditor u/gnothro, whose comments have received more than 3,500 upvotes, offered a similar response.
“What a drama queen,” they joked. “You dodged a bullet here, it can go dramatic elsewhere.”
“So homeboy can dish it out by having a police escort for no apparent reason, but can’t handle it when you have a hilariously cute cathartic photoshoot,” Redditor invaded u/pennywhistlesmoonpie, receiving nearly 3,000 votes. “So [not the a**hole] it’s not even funny.”
News week contacted u/ExtensionPresent15 for comment.