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Teen Claps Back After ‘Brutally Honest’ Cousin Calls Her Friend ‘Not That Pretty’ Upon Meeting Her

Ben White / unsplash

When your family and friends disagree, it can be difficult for some to take sides. But when you do, how do you handle the fallout from the aggrieved party?

Redditor besos_for_jongho had an issue with her cousin and her friend. When the original poster (OP)’s cousin makes fun of her friend, OP retaliates.

Now, her family is saying she shouldn’t have done that, and OP is wondering if she’s the bad guy for what happened. So she decided to ask the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit about her comments.

And the fight is as petty as you’d expect for children.

“AITA For Telling My Cousin She Isn’t As Pretty As She Thinks She Is?”

But is being petty enough to discount OP’s feelings?

“My(16F[emale]) cousin(17F) is very blunt. She says what she feel and i don’t have a problem with it most of the time.”

“I normally let her talk although i don’t agree with what she says. There are somethings that my cousin would say that i would tell not to do tho.”

“Whenever i would show her a picture of one of my friends she would call them ugly and my assumptions on how she thinks they act. I don’t think any of my friends are ugly and the assumptions she makes are always wrong.”

“Yesterday i invited her to hang out with me and my friends. She agreed.”

“We hung out and talked then my cousin looks my friend dead in her eyes and says ‘You’re not that pretty. Now that i actually look at you’.”

‘That friend of mine is very insecure about her looks and i told my cousin this beforehand. My friend excused herself to the bathroom and 2 other girls followed.”

“I was so angry at my cousin, she knew that my friend had insecurities and she thought it’d be okay for her to point out that she was ‘ugly’. I turned to look at my cousin and i raised my voice and told her the she wasn’t as pretty as she thinks she is and that my friend is way prettier.”

“My cousin stood up and walked away she looked as if she wanted to cry.”

“When I got home my aunt was there with my cousin on the couch. They want me to apologize.

“But i don’t want to. She disrespected my friend. My whole family is mad at me and im no longer allowed at family functions until i apologize.”


After sharing her story, some commenters made some assumptions about how the family reacted or what they knew.

So OP added a little more information to the story in a comment:

“I should add this in, my family heard all the sides of the story and say that family comes first bc we’re blood.”

“they say my friend overreacted, my aunt said insecurity is just a reason to cry or something like that. My sister wont go to family functions until im allowed to go back, i love her for that.”

“I love her anyways cus shes my sister.” – besos_for_jongho (OP)

OP insulted her cousin after the cousin insulted OP’s friend. The girls are fighting and the family is now involved.

Should OP apologize or did she do the right thing?

On Reddit, the users of the board judged OP for insulting her cousin after her cousin called her friend ugly by including one of the following in their response:

  • NTA – Not the A**hole
  • YTA – You’re the A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everybody Sucks Here

OP’s retaliation wasn’t the best response, but it also didn’t make her a jerk. Her cousin was hurtful without reason and if she can’t handle it being said to her, she shouldn’t say it to other people.

If anyone should be apologizing, it’s the cousin. OP can sit pretty knowing the internet backs her.

Most of the comments agreed with OP.

“NTA. Here’s your apology,”

“‘I’m sorry you use ‘brutal honesty’ to just be brutal. I’m sorry I ever invited you to meet my friends and I’m sorry you made my friend cry in the bathroom.’”

“‘However, I’m not sorry you got a taste of the brutal side of honesty. Maybe now you’ll consider what you say and who you say it to’.” – coneyb11


“It sounds like your family has been enabling your cousin’s behavior. Stick to your guns on this. Blood or not, not all family is worth holding on to and your cousin sounds like a B.” – Substantial_Ad7919

“Nta. Ironic that she feels free to call others ugly but runs to her mommy when she gets the same treatment.”

“I would tell her mom that you’ll apologize for calling her not that pretty when she apologizes to the friend she called ugly.” – HarlesBronson

“NTA. You stood up for your friend because your relative was decidedly cruel (assuming without provocation).”

“Bet the family isn’t interested in your side of the story, nor your friend’s. Until and unless the family hears the other 2 sides of it, you can’t abide by their demand.” – FeistyIrishWench

“NTA. Sure maybe you shouldn’t stoop to her level, but sometimes people don’t fully realise what they’ve done to another until they experience it themselves.”

“It sounds like your cousin didn’t tell the whole truth of what she said first, or your Aunt is enabling this behaviour.”

“Sucks for your cousin if her inappropriate comments come from insecurity or lack of discipline, but it’s not your responsibility to indulge her when she hurts you/your friends.” – GraciousCriminality


“I don’t see the problem here she talks bluntly you told her off bluntly. Your family is just enabling your cousin tbh.”

“Is she a rainbow baby or something. Either way your family favors her over you best to not hangout with her in the future.” – Mabusmoriah

Some of the commenters spoke about what they think OP should do and how she should interact with her family going forward. Her interactions will be a little tense in the short term, but over time, things should lighten up.

But handling irate family can be difficult.

“Don’t invite her over. Don’t hang out. Don’t show her pictures of your friends. And learn to call ppl out immediately.”

“Like as soon as she got that first sentence out you should have told her that she was being rude, unkind, and untruthful and that you don’t tolerate such nonsense and she should leave.”

“NTA and if your family knows that she was unspeakably rude to guests in your house and still want you to apologize? Then they are rude and wrong too and you should stop caring what they think and just tolerate them as long as you must.”

“Also, what is with all these enmeshed families that are this invested in a situation btw to teens? Like, this isn’ta big deal? One cousin is a b&@$” and she got called out on it?”

“Why would any adult care unless they were going to reprimand said b word?” – Due-Macaroon-1737

“NTA- yeah, she isn’t a blunt person. She’s a brat. Tell your family that your cousin always wants to say stuff(and make it known exactly what she said and did) and ‘be honest even if it’s blunt’ so you returned the favor.”  

“You’ll no longer sugar coat things for her. It’s better to be honest right? Well your cousin isn’t as pretty as she think she is (especially when she shows that personality) and she deserves to know the truth.”

“Cause telling the truth is always the best, right?”

“Honestly, do you even want to go to the family stuff with them there? Stick to your guns on this one. Family doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be held responsible for their bad behavior.” – Tasty-Biscotti355

“I was meh, until you told me what she said. When I was a teen I would have been devastated by a comment like that to my face.”

“Well, I was. At a summer apprenticeship, another girls told me, ‘your mom was wrong. You’re not pretty. Not even that cute. She was being nice.’”

“My mom had died the year before. I was 16. I’m 58 and to this day, if I feel good about how I look, I will hear those words.”

“Are they true? It does not matter. She did it to test me down and make herself feel better about her appearance. It hurt. It still does, but I have to look at it in the abstract to mentally push that away.”

“Uninvited hate is just someone’s insecure BS pooping on people for their entertainment. NTA.”

“I wish someone had said something to her, but I was in the bathroom, crying alone, right after. I wouldn’t let anyone close enough, emotionally, to insult me like that, or bolster me, for a long time.” – naliedel

How OP goes about repairing her relationship with her family, or if she even wants to is up for debate. But in the end, her response was justified in the wake of her cousin’s insult.

Hopefully OP’s friend knows that she has a great supporter in OP.

Written by Ben Acosta

Ben Acosta is an Arizona-based fiction author and freelance writer. In his free time, he critiques media and acts in local stage productions.