Parenting is full of strange moments, whether you’re wondering if your baby should be making that noise or if you’re questioning what the heck your 20-year-old was thinking.
One stepmother on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit found herself asking this question about her 15-year-old stepdaughter.
Redditor Funsizewifey pointed out some strange behaviors she’d witnessed in her house that she had no answers for.
When the Original Poster (OP) started trying to correct it, she wondered if she was looking too much into it.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my stepdaughter to stop wearing my clothes?”
This has been an ongoing issue.
“This sounds kinda bad, but it’s been a problem for a while.”
“My (34[female]) stepdaughter (15[female]) (her dad has full custody) keeps wearing my clothes.”
“It’s not because she doesn’t have clothes, she has more clothes than just about anyone in the house. I buy her clothes when I’m out and about, her mom buys her clothes and her grandma does too.”
“I only have like 3 pairs of pants and about 5 or 6 shirts that are ok to wear in public (most things I have, she has ruined by wearing them and she’s a messy eater). And my clothes aren’t even in style lol (laughing out loud).”
“She’s also significantly more thin than I am. I have a big butt and big boobs (ugh).”
The OP recently tried to establish a new boundary.
“I’m not trying to be mean when I tell her, but it’s gotten pretty annoying. This morning, when she was getting ready for school, she came out wearing my favorite black jeggings.”
“They were hanging off of her and I said, ‘hon, those are my pants, wear your own,’ but she said she couldn’t find any of hers.”
“I told her they were hanging off her butt and probably would fall down at school, and I know she has like 10 pairs of pants that fit her. And they’re so cute! I’d wear them, and they’re definitely in style for the kids nowadays. I sound like an old lady, but it’s true.”
The OP has mixed feelings about what to do.
“I just feel like an a**hole for saying anything, just in case there’s a reason for her wearing my clothes that I’m not sure of, because I’ve asked, but she doesn’t say there’s any reason.”
“I mean, the girl has worn my underwear and they are just standard lady’s panties and like 3 or 4 sizes too big for her, nothing special, so it’s just strange to me.”
“I just wonder if I should let her wear my clothes and let it be, I’m not sure.”
“Her dad says she wants to be like me, but does tell her not to wear my clothes.”
“She continues to wear them no matter what we say.”
“So, AITA? Should I let her keep wearing my clothes and just stay quiet?”
The OP also edited her post to answer a few questions from the comments.
“First, her dad has also talked to her about not wearing my clothes, she simply doesn’t listen.”
“Second, her clothes aren’t tight, revealing or anything, and her underwear are the soft comfy ones, I bought her similar ones to mine with different colors, the size clearly marked.”
“Third, she is in therapy, has been for awhile.”
“Fourth, she does her laundry, we do it together, and I’m pretty sure she’s taking my clothes out of the dryer.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some of the Redditors suggested therapy right away.
“Get her to therapy ASAP and install a lock in your room or your wardrobe so she can’t take your things anymore. This is really odd.” – Capitol_Cow3540
“NTA but consider getting her to talk to a therapist, wearing someone else’s underwear is straight-up wrong, practically the same as sharing a toothbrush, and also think of a mediation, like buying matching shirts or something, maybe she just likes your style, but the whole thing feels so weird, there must be something going on.” – International-List76
Others urged the OP to teach her stepdaughter about proper etiquette.
“You say that you tell her not to wear your clothes, but have you ever backed that up with a punishment?”
“Next time she’s wearing your clothes she has to take them off, no arguing. Or loses phone privileges for a day.”
“If you say she can’t do something and there are no consequences when she does, she’s learning she can break the rules and that rules don’t matter. You are teaching her to be entitled to whatever she wants.”
“With teenagers it’s not just about making them happy, they need to learn to be decent members of the human race. You can’t send her off to college just thinking she can take her roommate’s clothes whenever she wants.”
“She needs to learn to ask for things she wants, and take no for an answer, and be responsible for other people’s property. To be Frank, this isn’t just about you, by letting her walk all over you she is learning to be a worse person.” – Music_withRocks_In
“My first thought is she’s emulating your body type and is maybe insecure about her own? Either way, it’s disrespectful. She would be TA if she were borrowing a roommate or sister’s clothes, doubly so if she were ruining them as she is yours as well.”
“I feel this is something you can be firm about because you’re trying to accommodate her in buying like items but she has to understand using other people’s things against their permission is not cool. Especially if they have a limited amount of that belonging and especially their underwear.” – el_deedee
Others tried to puzzle out where the behavior was coming from.
Some thought it was a bonding gesture with the OP.
“Do you think she does this because she loves you and wants to be close to you ? In a ‘boyfriend hoodie’ kind of way. That’s my initial thought.”
“My second thought is maybe she really likes the baggy clothes. Either for sensory reasons, or maybe she’s dealing with sexual harassment and is trying to hide her body.”
“Have you tried buying her clothes in a couple of sizes too big for her?”
“NAH.” – Enlightened_Gardener
“My next guess would be that she wants to be close to you. I love borrowing my dads sweaters, because it feels like he is there. Even though I see him on a regular basis, wearing his clothes on a gloomy day feels like a hug. And I don’t care if it sounds weird.” – Lady_Siren13
Others thought it had more to do with the young woman’s father.
“It’s just my presumption, but I have a feeling it’s because you’re her stepmom.”
“I heard of a similar story. The stepdaughter copied the behavior and hairstyle of her stepmom. She thought, if she was like her, her dad would leave stepmom.”
“I don’t know how your relationship with her is. How was it at the beginning of your relationship with her father?” – Lady_Siren13
“My concern would be if she had an unhealthy attachment to her father and is she dresses like stepmom maybe dad will pay more attention to her. Maybe she had.and resentment or issues when they married?” – RetroKida
Something strange is afoot with this one.
The subReddit was divided on what they thought all of this meant, but their concerns were universal.
Hopefully, the OP gets it sorted out.