Adjusting to changes as an adult can be tricky. On one hand, you have the time to emotionally mature and learn to deal with your thoughts and emotions.
On the other hand, there are things that evoke an emotional response, no matter how much you think you’re prepared for it.
Redditor Short-Subtance explained how they upset their childhood friend in a post on the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.
The original poster (OP) asked:
“AITA for buying my friend’s childhood home?”
Their story went:
“I’ve got a friend, K that I’ve known since we were 5 and now we’re in our mid 30s. We used to be close but after uni he moved to the US for work so we only talk occasionally.”
“In fact I see his parents more often than I see him, because pre-pandemic his dad would get the same train as me into London and sometimes we’d sit together.”
“Anyway, me and my wife have a kid and would like one more at least so we’re looking to buy a house. We currently live in a 2 bedroom flat and it’s getting small.”
“We were looking at listings online when I came across my friend’s childhood home.”
“Turns out his parents were looking to downsize and were selling their house. Honestly, it was perfect for us : 5 bedrooms, garden space, close to the station. They’d even had a special line laid into their house for super high speed internet, something like 5-10 GBPS down.”
“Seeing this I phoned up my friend’s dad and asked him about the house. He was very open to the idea of selling to me, and even said he was glad ‘it was staying in the family’ (our families are also close).”
“We dealt with each other directly, without an estate agent and therefore he was able to give me a nice discount.”
“All that was in October – but my friend K has been livid ever since. He keeps saying how I’d ‘bought his childhood’ and I was ‘taking advantage of his parents’ by having paid them less.”
“His sister on the other hand, was happy for me and on lieu of a housewarming party sent my family a framed picture of our two families from when we were about 10 or so.”
“While I didn’t do anything wrong legally, I feel I may have stepped on K’s toes by now living in a place where he grew up.”
On the AITA subReddit, the internet will judge you in four ways.
The acronyms are:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
For this story, the internet agreed that OP was NTA.
“NTA. As someone whose dad is about to put my childhood home on the market…. I would love if one of my friends could buy it.”
“Its getting sold regardless, the price that you and friend’s father agreed upon must be fair or else I doubt he would have sold. You’d think it would be a bonus that friend could still visit his childhood home” – misplaced-80skid
“While I can understand why K feels a little weird about it you are NTA.”
“The nostalgia is no reason for you not to buy the house. Moreover you didn’t take advantage of his parents since the discount you got was the money they now didn’t have to pay to the middle men.”
“I don’t know what Ks problem is but it’s not you.” – nicolasbaege
“NTA- You didn’t take advantage of his parents. Sometimes the less people involved the better.”
“Also, his father offered you a discount, you didn’t ask for one. Maybe he’s just really mad his parents moved from his childhood home, some people are like that.”
“But considering everyone else in his family is happy, you should be too.” – MrsBarneyFife
“NTA: He’s probably worried that you’ll find his collection of Penthouse or Playboy magazines under the loose floorboard in the wardrobe of what was his bedroom, as he’s spent the last few years trying to find a way to discreetly retrieve them” – CarpeCyprinidae
Their friend is upset, but there is likely something else at play here. Some suggest the friend maybe wanted to buy it, or that K is just getting used to the idea of change.
Whatever the issue, it’s something he has to deal with and not OP’s fault.
“NAH – You didn’t do anything wrong morally. But I can’t blame your friend for being weirded out about it. I would probably feel the same if I were him.” – Aquamarinade
“It’s more likely that he was viewing the home as a potential inheritance or he may have in some way thought that if he moved back he could make them an offer when they were older, and you’ve just short-circuited that, likely they didn’t tell him they were considering selling or that he would be interested.” – Arkslippy
“Your friend is sad because life is changing and his childhood home is being sold. There’s no ‘going home’ anymore for him the way it used to be.”
“Might be even more difficult since he is overseas.”
“He’s not mad at you, he’s projecting his disappointment. And he may be mad at his parents too, but it is safer to be mad at you than at his parents.”
“Don’t take it personally. Hopefully his anger will fade and he’ll come around to the house ‘staying in the family.’ Good luck OP.” – WildlifePolicyChick
“NAH. You are not at all wrong to buy the house but it’s not completely unreasonable for your friend to feel weirded out by it and because of that he is lashing out.”
“I think you should sit him down and talk it out with him. I’m sure you both will be able to solve this issue. Hopefully, his father would talk to him too and let him know that he is not being taken advantage of.” – piemakerdeadwaker
It’s difficult seeing how things change. K probably feels like they’re losing some piece of their childhood. But they’re actually fairly lucky someone they know chose to buy the home.
In another scenario, maybe a stranger buys it and they lose out on being able to revisit their old house forever.
It may take time, but perhaps K will come to understand this is for the best.