Taking a family member into one’s home often feels non-negotiable, especially during a pandemic that has dealt such a heavy economic blow to countless people.
But sometimes generous help and support is completely taken for granted by the interim guest. One Redditor, known as MissySedal on the site, encountered exactly that on the very worst day possible.
She posted her experience to the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit, where internet readers would come to offer some feedback on the situation.
One look at the post’s title gives an ominous sense of this family drama.
“AITA for banning my brother from my house after he essentially poisoned me?”
MissySedal, the Original Poster (OP), began with some relevant context.
“Quick background: My [50-year-old female] brother [48-year-old male] is on probation (again), flatly refuses to get a job, and is functionally homeless.”
“He’s been couch surfing for years, and had been staying a few nights a week at my house. So…”
OP then launched into specifics.
“When my state locked down in March, my husband [51-year-old male] and I decided he could stay until the order was lifted, provided he make every attempt to be in full compliance with the terms of his probation.”
“I bought him a phone and put him on my phone plan to help him with job hunting. He made no effort to find a job, and instead spent a lot of time baking. This becomes important.”
“In May, the lockdown order expired, and we reminded him that he couldn’t stay over any more. He still came over twice a week, he’d often bake muffins while I was upstairs in my office.”
Recently, OP had an important day. It started as promising as it could have.
“In September, I took a new job. He came over on my first day, which had started with me being so nervous that I scalded my mouth on my coffee. I was also in the throes of an allergy attack and congested.”
“I told him I was busy with work, so he decided to bake muffins.”
“A bit later, he brought me a pair of muffins. I noted that I could not smell or taste anything correctly due to the allergies and the scalded mouth, but I ate them anyway.”
“He was very proud of them, so what the hell, right? Shortly after, his friend came to pick him up.”
But then things took a turn.
“I resumed my work, and soon began feeling awful: tunnel vision, couldn’t type, heart pounding, head buzzing and throbbing, and developed a full-blown panic attack, sure I was having a stroke.”
“I somehow managed to finish my workday. My husband came home from work, finding me in tears and begging to be taken to the hospital.”
“He asked if my brother had been over, and said the whole downstairs smelled of weed.”
So they called in a trusted source.
“He said ‘Your eyes are HUGE and you REEK of weed!’ He called my neighbor, an EMT. She came over to check me over. Not a stroke, I was HIGH AF. WTF?”
“She walked me through my day, asked me what I had eaten…oh. She searched my kitchen and found some batter drops and tasted them.”
“She surmised he had substituted highly concentrated cannabutter 1:1 for oil, which was why I was in such bad shape.”
That discovery demanded some follow-up.
“I called him, asking if he had made magic muffins in my house. He asked why, and I told him that he had given me enough THC to knock an elephant out.”
“‘Oh. My bad. I thought I gave you the plain ones.'”
“It took me THREE DAYS to recover fully.”
Things didn’t end there, though.
“On day 4, he came over and cracked ‘Guess you fell apart, huh?’ And there is when I lost my sh**.”
“My husband and I both have government adjacent jobs, had I had any on camera meetings, I would have been fired.”
“I told him he could not come back AT ALL until he had a job, his own place, and was 100% in compliance with his probation, we could not afford to put our jobs in jeopardy.”
But her firm decision began to feel more complicated recently.
“It’s almost December. His friends are sick of his sh** and telling me I need to ‘take responsibility’ and take him back in.”
“I’ve refused. He’s my brother, not my child, and I will not risk losing a job I worked really hard to get. AITA?”
Anonymous strangers on the internet were asked to provide feedback by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Redditors’ general consensus was quite clear. They agreed that OP was not at all the a**hole.
“NTA. His friends are under no more obligation to babysit a grown man than you are. Maybe exhausting every fallback will force him to finally grow up and take responsibility for himself.”
“Or not, but it’s still not your problem to solve.” — mm172
“NTA. Your house and you made your rules very clear. He was to be out by the end of lockdown and it’s not your job to baby him.” — ElbowSkinn
“It’s always interesting when someone doesn’t have enough money to pay for their basics like housing and food, yet always manages to find cash for what’s really important in their life like weed, cigarettes, tattoos…”
“NTA. You’ve decided to stop enabling your brother. Sounds reasonable. Maybe at some point he’ll realize he might not just be able to rent a room somewhere but also keep a job if he stops buying weed.” — milee30
Some people explicitly acknowledged the seriousness of the situation.
“NTA. It’s not a joke to feed someone a drug they didn’t consent to taking. And he’s forty-eight years old. He’s either more than capable of taking care of himself or he should be.” — Lulu_42
“NTA. What he did is technically illegal, you can’t put none food items(ig. drugs) in food that other people eat.”
“It is a crime, it’s the same reason why you can’t legally put laxatives in food at work if someone is stealing your food.” — BiohazardousBisexual
“NTA. Your brother drugged you. Negligence or intent does not matter. You get to tell him to stay out of your house for as long as you want.”
“He’s lucky you don’t call the police.” — Maestro_Primus
And plenty of Redditors encouraged tough love.
“NTA – you’ve given him more than enough tools to help himself, sometimes people need to hit rock bottom before they’re able to turn their lives around.” — EchoFoxAlpha
“NTA and it’s time to cut your brother out of your life for good.” — cringekid1515
“Absolutely NTA! He could have cost you your job! I say tough love and keep his a** out.” — Notsriracha
“NTA. Call his probation officer and they will house him for free.” — kegman83
Here’s hoping OP is able to enjoy her new job with the comforts of undisturbed concentration and, of course, sobriety.