Wife’s Detailed Grocery List TikTok Sparks Conversation About “Weaponized Incompetence”

grocery list tiktok

Everyone has a different way of making a shopping list. Some write a detailed list organized by aisle. Some add random items to a piece of paper on the fridge. Some just wing it.

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One viral TikTok shows a woman making what might be the most organized and detailed grocery list I’ve ever seen for her husband.

grocery list tiktok
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There are even pictures of items.

So is the TikToker, Melinda of @adamxmelinda, very Type A or married to a totally incompetent husband?

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Melinda posted the video showing herself writing out the list, naming the items, including where to find them, how much they would be, and what each item looks like. She also drew a map of the store showing where the items would be located.

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Melinda said the video was a joke, but it kind of hit hard with a lot of viewers who know what it’s like to have a significant other who is either totally disorganized or just lazy.

TikToker @notwildin created a video to discuss Melinda’s, pointing out that it’s a good example of performative or weaponized incompetence:


#stitch with @adamxmelinda this is kind of a ramble but hold it

♬ original sound – He whom hath that bubbly
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“Actually, what this husband is doing is exaggerating their own incompetence and exaggerating their own incapability to force the labor that they don’t want to do…onto their partner,” he explained.

Basically, performative incompetence is when a partner tricks their significant other into doing a disproportionate amount of labor regarding an activity that should be simple. What this does is it both takes away responsibility and also sets the bar so low that any future contributions will be seen as “incredible.”

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I mean, if you’ve ever seen a sitcom with an incompetent husband and a wife who sets him up for success at her own expense, @notwildin’s analysis will sound familiar. Or maybe this is your life. If that’s the case, it’s time for a discussion about the division of labor.

Featured Image: TikTok