Anime and manga fans outside of Japan tend to view the country as being a safe haven for otaku, assuming that everyone loves the stuff. And while comics and cartoons certainly are a popular and essential part of mainstream Japanese media, it doesn’t mean everyone in Japan approves.
Here’s one story detailing the marital problems that have befallen a family whose wife simply couldn’t understand her otaku husband’s interests.
Earlier this month, a troubled housewife took to Yomiuri Online (the right-of-center, national newspaper’s website) looking for advice on her marital relationship. Posting as “Maki” on Hatsugen Komachi, Yomiuri Online’s public forum targeted at women, the housewife explained her situation and asked for feedback.
A waste of money!
In her post, Maki explained that she’s a housewife in her late thirties, with a husband three years older and an 11-year-old son. According to the story, her husband kept coming home with boxes of drink bottles. When she asked why, her husband explained that he was collecting them as part of a campaign the convenience store was having. Looking at the total number, she saw over 10,000 yen (US$100.60) worth of bottles! Getting angry at his loose use of money, Mika told him to use his own savings for daily expenses and then refused to do any housework or cooking.
However, the next month, Mika’s husband changed the bank account his company deposited money into and grabbed the family bankbook (a notebook used to record all transactions at the bank which also serves as a kind of ATM card) for himself. From then on, he declared, he’d be in charge of the family’s money. Mika was upset, but her husband pointed out that she’d abandoned her housework and then got her parents on his side, forcing her to give in.
An act of anger
After putting up with the situation for a while, Mika finally decided that she’d had enough and, while her husband was out, tossed all of his anime goods and Blu-rays. Upon discovering what his wife had done, the husband rushed to the garbage collection area to gather up his prized possessions—only to discover that she’d done more than toss it all. It seems that Maki had expected this and cut everything up with scissors.
The Not-So-Happy Ending
Furious, Maki’s husband locked himself in his room and refused to come out. Here, Maki includes the comment: “In commemoration of his graduating out of such a childish and embarrassing hobby, I’d prepared a grand meal for him. But no matter how many times I called for him, I couldn’t get him to leave his room.” The next morning, her husband appeared and told her, “We’re getting divorced. I want you to leave right away.” He added that he would keep their son. Finally, Mika ends her post saying “I don’t want to get divorced. The problem is his hobby, so I don’t see why I’m being chased out.”
The Net reacts!
While it’s a difficult situation for everyone involved, Internet commenters didn’t have much sympathy for Mika:
You went too far. There’s nothing to be done but leave.
You need to break up. Please!
Make your own money so you can live on your own.
I feel so badly for your husband! Please just divorce him as he asked.
Your husband is so pitiful…please divorce him quickly!
There’s no way to look at this but as your fault!
Well, that was certainly one-sided! What do you guys think? Should they get a divorce? It definitely seems like neither of these people are really acting like adults in this situation.