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How do I talk to my girlfriend in regards to her behavior after an accident?

Tagged as: Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (13 August 2011) 5 Answers - (Newest, 13 August 2011)
A male United States age 30-35, *ayne555 writes:

My apologizes for the long story.

I am 26. My gf is 25. We are both Asian. My gf’s younger sister and brother were also there and a friend of her. We sat together at a table. The tables were arranged in rows with chairs facing back-to-back with less than 2 feet in separation.

I thought my gf reacted poorly to an accident at a fundraising event. It was a church event for fundraising that had music and food stands. We had just finished eating a nice hot bowl of noodle soup. The soup wasn’t too hot since it had a lot of noodles. I went to dispose our bowls in the trash.

When I returned, the back of my gf shirt on the lower left side was wet from some soup bowl. A woman almost 2x her age had accidently lost hold of her bowl and spilled on my gf. The woman tried to help clean my gf’s shirt and went to get some ice to rub the spilled areas. Another person gave me moist towelette. I used the towelette to clean the spilled areas and rub slightly her skin to ice. The woman saw that I was taking care of my gf, so she went back to her seat. I looked at her skin and it wasn’t red much. After about an hour, it was slightly red. I have no doubt it was hot, but it wasn’t anywhere near first degree burn.

During the entire time that I and the woman cleaned her shirt and put ice on her, she kept complaining with an attitude that her new shirt was ruined and that she wanted the woman repay for her shirt. She was even more pissed with the woman that she didn’t offer an apology or offer to pay for her shirt. At the same time, the younger sister kept saying that we can sue the woman and that I (as a bf) should do something. The other two friends kept quiet.

Still fuming, my gf walked over to the woman who was sitting with about 5 others men and woman who were at least twice her age. They were old enough to be her mom and dad. In a very confrontational voice, she demanded an apology from the woman and made a huge scene. The woman explained that a young girl had knocked her arm slightly and so she lost control of the bowl. The woman, along with her cousin, both apologized for the accident after my gf became more irritated. One younger man about 35 years was laughing at her attitude. Another man about 50 years was much sterner but respectfully explained to her it was just an accident and said she was being unreasonable for her attitude. Regardless of what they said, my gf kept arguing with these people and raised her voice higher demanding that the woman pay for her shirt.

I tried to calm my gf down and took her back to her seat. She came back to her seat but refused to sit. She was still so mad that she verbally said she wanted to pour a can of soda on their back so that they would know how it is. I told my gf it was accident, and it’s not right to intentionally hurt someone like that. She got mad at me for what she thought I was siding with the other people. My gf then told me to grab her jacket in my car (two blocks away). I ran and got her my coat instead because I didn’t want the soup to stain her coat.

While I went to buy ice bottle water so she can keep her back cooled, she started walking away without saying anything with the other 3 people. I looked for them, and found that she went to the other person’s car instead of mine. I gave her the bottle and drove by myself in my car. I then drove to a drug store to buy about $30 worth of burn spray, gel, and cold pack and stopped by her place to give them to her. I applied a self-adhesive cold pack on the spilled areas and instructed her can use the burn gel if the cold pack doesn’t help.

The younger sister then tried to teach me that I should have “bitched” at the woman to defend my gf. I explained it was just an accident and that I didn’t feel the need to be yelling at the people. I took it for what it was – an accident. I then explained to the sister that I, myself, had spilled hot soup on another person before and that person went berserk on me. The sister basically said “so what.” The sister also told me that my gf called the woman several names such as “dog” and “bitch.” My gf has a foul mouth sometimes when she’s angry but never with me, so far. We had talked about name calling once.

I felt my gf and the sister had this extremely high sense of self entitlement when someone did something wrong. And yet, they expect the other persons to be “nice” if they did something wrong. It was just an accident, and I felt my gf made a huge scene at a church fundraising. I felt embarrassed for her in the way she reacted. There was no grace, no empathy, and no sense of maturity whatsoever. I felt she was rude and disrespectful to people with her attitude who could be her parents. If it were me, I would just wipe the spill off, laugh it off, and continue to enjoy my day. Maybe I am too generous, but that would be exactly what I would’ve done.

How do you think my gf reacted? How should have she reacted?

How should I explain to her about her behavior? Should I?

Thanks everyone!

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A female reader, sammy1986 United Kingdom +, writes (13 August 2011):

your girlfriend totally over reacted that poor woman apologised and she got more annoyed i would tell your girlfriend how embarassed and ashamed she should be

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 August 2011):

It sounds like your girlfriend is 25 going on 13! Seriously--how immature!

She needs to grow up.

You, on the other hand, handled the situation perfectly. You took care of your gf (above and beyond a little hot soup spill). You, sir, are a gentleman.

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A female reader, lovelyeyes United States +, writes (13 August 2011):

Wow!! She realy over reacted!! I don't even know how u could want to stay w/her cause obviously this is hers and her families true side. If she's reacting like this over something this small I can't even imagine how she would react to something of a bigger deal. Thia family realy sounds like they have no respect for other and just plain old spoiled brats w/no manners. Good luck w/this girlfriend!

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A female reader, VSAddict United States +, writes (13 August 2011):

VSAddict agony auntYour gf was way out of line. This was an accident and accidents always happen. There was no need for her to have that attitude. She has the right to be a little mad, but not to that extent. She can always wash her shirt, it's not that big of a deal. She should've just let you clean her off without any complaining and should've accepted the apology. Tell your girlfriend that you feel she was out of line and that you would like it if she refrains from acting like that, at least while with you.

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A male reader, wayne555 United States +, writes (13 August 2011):

wayne555 is verified as being by the original poster of the question

I should add that she was nice & sweet to me when I left her place last night and this morning.

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