The internet has backed a man who is thinking about leaving his girlfriend after she nearly got him shot during an armed robbery, just so she could save her belongings from getting stolen.
In a post shared on Monday on Reddit, the man, under the username u/innundatedwithbros, explained that he and his girlfriend were held at gunpoint by an armed robber after going to a party. He said she put their lives in danger by not complying with the robber.
He said: “She refused to give him her phone or purse. She decided that the best course of action was to argue with him. She kept yelling at me to do something which led to the guy keeping his [gun] trained on me the entire time. She was just doing too much. She had no sense of self-preservation and it was very clear she valued her material possessions more than my life.”
According to Statista, there were 37,899 robberies with a handgun in the United States in 2021. A further 9,702 robberies were perpetrated with a knife or other cutting instrument in that year.
Soula Hareas, a mental health counselor at Florida-based McNulty Counseling and Wellness told Newsweek that leaving your girlfriend just for the one episode may be an exaggerated response if this is the first time he’s seeing this behavior.
She said: “The easy response would be to dump her. But, we are all human and we have experienced events in our lives where we don’t know why we reacted the way we did. The toughest people can turn to jello and the people who seem like pushovers can assert themselves when needed.”
Hareas explained that in general, most people know two or three of the trauma responses, which are fight, flight, and freeze, but there is also another trauma response called fawn.
“This is when you try to please the person or do anything they ask at the moment. This is what he did. Her “fight” response may not have been the best one in the situation but it could be the first time she has been face-to-face with a robber and it was surreal to her. Instead of jumping to the conclusion of ‘she must be materialistic and that she can’t be trusted,’ he needs to communicate his feelings to her. Maybe it’s something deeper.
“Some people refuse a robber’s requests because they worked so hard for something or it has sentimental value. Not the ideal response, but if a watch was the only thing you had left of your father or mother, you may have an emotional reaction during a robbery that does not seem logical or rational. We always say material objects can be replaced but lives can’t.”
According to Hareas, the best course of action would be for the OP to sit down with his girlfriend and have a discussion about what made these things so important that she was willing to risk dying for them, and he should also discuss what her expectations are with regard to him.
The post quickly went viral on the platform, receiving over 19,400 upvotes and 1,600 comments so far in the thread.
One user, amygdalad, commented: “I know a guy who got shot in the head during a craigslist sale gone robbery. It was over $200. He somehow lived… But yeah he refused to hand over the $200 item.”
User Sandi375 said: “Sounds like she didn’t comprehend that it was a serious threat. She had a “it won’t happen to me” attitude. You’re lucky the mugger didn’t just shoot.”
User Ill_Shop5718 added: “My friend’s husband DIED because he tried to fight a carjacker. They murdered him and took the car anyway. My wife and I live in a big city. We’ve had a couple [of] conversations about this. Rule number 1 is absolutely give them whatever they want. I can replace the phone, car, credit card. I can’t replace my wife. I can’t believe your [girlfriend] was that dumb to risk both your lives over material things.”
Newsweek reached out to u/innundatedwithbros for comment. We could not verify the details of the case.
Have you noticed any red flags that made you end a relationship? Let us know via [email protected]. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.