The longer we self-isolate with loved ones, the more likely it is that we will have to share some of our stuff.
But where do we draw the line?
Should we hold on to those things we treasure most, or should we share everything, to prevent all of us from having to go back outside?
One Reddit user, "Altruistic-Mud," found herself facing this question recently when her sisters ran out of feminine products.
She shared her story to the "Am I the A$$hole?" subReddit, wondering if she was in the wrong.
"So, my (23f) sisters (22f, 20f, 18f) are all home from college right now. So there are a lot of girls in the house and a lot of periods. I mostly use cloth pads, but when I have to use a disposable (mainly if I'm traveling or out of the house for a whole day, I hate carrying used pads in my purse) I have to use an expensive natural brand (7th Generation) because I have sensitive skin. If I try to use Always or store brands... it's not good."
Instead of buying more, her three college-going sisters all started using her supply of expensive, high-end pads she was required to use to quiet her allergies.
"My sisters keep taking my expensive pads. I've asked them nicely 1-3 times each to please not take my pads. They said okay, sorry and continued to take them."
She came up with what she thought would be a funny, and workable, solution.
"So today when I was at the dollar store for groceries I went ahead and picked up some of the cheapest pads. 10 for a buck. These are one of the few cheap brands I can use and they work just fine, they are just bulky so I would rather not. I went ahead and hid my pads in my room. I put the pads in a basket that said 'PADS FOR MOOCHERS'."
But clearly her family felt otherwise.
"When my middle sister saw it she got mad. She said the sign was insulting and the pads I got were 'horrific garbage'."
"My other sisters and mom agreed."
"They want me to put my pads back in the bathroom because I 'don't use them that much anyway'."
The Reddit user still hoped for a solution.
"I said sure if they chip in for the cost but they said no because their student jobs closed down when the colleges did."
"So for some reason I should have to pay for their pads even though my job is closed too."
"I do have some savings but my parents were able to keep working from home and would gladly give them a bit of spending money if they asked nicely."
"I think maybe I should have just put the pads out without a sign but was I really the a$hole here?"
Reddit pointed out much of the angry feelings had to do with being guilty.
By taking the products she paid for, without asking, they were literally stealing from her.
When their mom defended them over the Reddit user, she was even normalizing the behavior.
"NTA they are literally stealing from you" - talia-gustin
"Agreed. How did it become your job to supply the whole family with pads? If your mother has a problem with it, she can buy her daughters the pads they want. NTA." - sortesilly
"Right? Also, 'pads for moochers' is totally funny. She still indulged their stealing and gave them free pads, just with a little innocuous joke." - ratthewmcconaughey
"I have 3 brothers and 2 were def kleptos when it suited their needs. One stole the shoelaces out of my favorite shoes and then hid the shoes under his bed, which I then found accidentally when checking for something else. Made me crazy and to this day I'm protective of my stuff." - smcivor1982
"Oh lord. Kleptosiblings are the worst."
"It took me a while to convince my uncle(grew up in a 3-generation home. He was the head of household.) to let me have a lockable door for my bedroom. They always complained that it was a fire risk, etc etc."
"My sister however...... she use to steal everything from me. Underwear and bras not excluded. (I always let her keep the undies because I was not about sharing those). This extended to hairdryers, make-up, got irons, you name it, she took it without regard and never put it back where she found it."
"Well, I kept a tally and some photos of how many times she left my hair straightener plugged in, on, on the floor- but not on the tile flooring the entire upstairs was, no. She left it on my rug. Threw "fire hazard" in the mix and I finally was able to get some peace! So many things stopped going missing."
"Edit:: (I totally got into storytelling) NTA. You're correct in the way you handled this. I feel that you only get so many nice requests before something like this happens. The sign was petty but hit the nail on the head didn't it?" - CCMeGently
What's a woman to do?
Should she share her high-end product? Or should she force her family members to go to the store to buy more, and potentially undo all the good they've accomplished by staying closed in?
At the very least, some sort of financial arrangement should be reached. Even if she's going to be the one to leave the house to buy more products, they could at least split the bill.
You can replace tampons and pads with EvaWear washable Period Panty available here.