Moms who breach their daughters’ diaries on the premise of “just trying to be a good mother” are a teen movie trope for the overbearing mother the audience is supposed to dislike on behalf of the protagonist.
Unfortunately not all of those moms solely exist in movies or on TV.
Reddit user beergoggleromeo found himself in a situation with his own wife, who was not happy with his decision.
Feeling reasonably confident with his actions, the 41-year-old father went to the popular subReddit “Am I The A**hole?” or “AITA” for affirmation.
“AITA for locking my daughters diary?”
Our original poster, or OP, explained:
“AITA for placing a lock on my daughter’s (11) diary so my wife (36) would stop reading it?”
“There was a recent post about a father who discovered his wife had been reading their child’s diary without her knowledge and the father wanted to tell his daughter the truth.”
“I, naively, shared this story with my wife to gain her insight and I thought we were on the same page. I was wrong.”
“For simplicity I’ll start calling daughter A and wife K.”
“About a week ago K revealed to me that she had been reading A’s diary because she was worried about her mental health.”
“Honestly I think she was concerned because A had started talking to a counselor and wouldn’t share what was said during those sessions.”
“She found out that A was very angry with her and is not handling this info very well.”
“I told K that I was incredibly disappointed and this was a serious invasion of privacy.”
“She was obviously upset that I didn’t agree but was completely unrepentant about her actions and said she had no intention of stopping.”
“So I bought a lock and told her it was to keep her older brother (13) and little sister (6) out of it. I did not mention her mother, I just can’t bring myself to tell her.”
“My wife now thinks I’m the a**hole because she just wants to gain insight into A’s mental health and I believe she should sit down and have an honest conversation. So Reddit what do you think?”
Redditors offered their own perspectives by declaring:
- YTA: You’re The A**hole
- NTA: Not The A**hole
- NAH: No A**holes Here
- ESH: Everyone Sucks Here
Reddit immediately agreed OP did the right thing.
“NTA. And as someone who had their parents read my personal writings, thank you. Your daughter’s privacy is important, and having someone read something personal is a huge breach of trust.”
“And like you said, if your wife is that concerned about your daughter’s mental health she can talk to her about it.”~SpitDontQuit
“You are NTA. Not for what you did (great move, seriously) and not for feeling cowardly about this.”
“Because it’s just a feeling, you have proof that in the moment you did the brave thing and protected your child’s innocence and privacy even if it put you on the opposite side of your wife.”
“Consider what the other posters said about giving wife a specific time to tell daughter what she did.”
“You can also give the therapist a heads up; you can *always* tell the therapist information even if they won’t disclose info to you and it can be extremely helpful in situations like this.”
“You could even suggest your wife plan a session with daughter’s consent along with her counselor to talk about this in a safe place.”
“Just remember that you aren’t breaking your daughter’s heart. If it happens, it was your wife who made the actions that did so – and she can help heal that wound if she is willing to put effort into taking accountability.”~Pissed_Off_Sub
“I was in a similar situation as a young teen and I think people forget that this is still a child who doesn’t have all the same tools to manage their emotions.”
“I tried writing about my feelings and the conflicts I was having with my parents.”
“It was taken away from me. I didn’t know how else to handle my emotions and it lead me down a very bad path.”
“OP, Journaling is a very constructive outlet for your daughter. If healthy avenues are taken away, it’s easy to fall into bad ones. Please protect her ability to express her emotions in a safe place.”
“NTA. If your wife is so concerned then she needs to let go of her need for control and listen to her daughter.”~femmemalin
“NTA. your wife was being sneaky… if she was truly worried about your daughters mental health, she could’ve gone to A or the counselor and asked:”
“‘Short of telling me things that violate patient confidentiality, what can I do to help A’s mental health be better?'”
“And then bam, problem solved. Communication happens and problems are addressed.”~scrappy8350
Violations of privacy are generally not the best way to help someone out with their deteriorating mental health.
“NTA. Agree that it’s an invasion of privacy. If the daughter ever found out it’ll lead to serious trust problems.”