As a parent, it’s difficult in some ways to watch your children grow up. It’s even harder when you believe they’re going to fail at something.
But at what point is it no longer okay to step in and “protect” your loved ones?
A father was faced with this question.
Redditor “AITAengagement” confirmed in his story on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit that even though his intentions were good, his input was not well-received.
The Original Poster (OP) asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my daughter to cancel her marriage?”
The OP explained that he always liked his daughter’s fiancé.
“I have a daughter (27) who was with her boyfriend for 7 years and they got engaged not long ago (just a small party, not many guests).”
“She always talks to me about how she loved him, how he always listens to [her] and he was made for her.”
“I have agreed with her, since I found [him] to be a good natured man, he was kind and humble and was always respectful to our family.”
But the OP wasn’t so sure about the fiancé’s upbringing.
“We’ve met his parents for dinner twice or thrice and they hit me as a little sexist, asking questions to my wife like ‘I don’t know why you’re working, isn’t that the husband’s job? Its the mothers job to be taking care of the children’.”
Then the groom and his parents shared their true intentions.
“Anyways we have been planning about the marriage, and one day her boyfriend comes to me and says that his parents want to talk to me.”
“I was going to call my daughter too, but he said that she wasn’t allowed.”
“I went with him and his parents started talking with me about DOWRY. I was confused and said that there was no dowry and in 2020 who even gives dowry??”
“But boyfriend and his parents started lecturing me about how necessary it was and how my daughter would be a stay at home wife (my daughter has told me that she wants to continue her dreams so I don’t know what this is).”
After talking to his daughter, the OP realized there were things she didn’t know.
“Anyways they told me that I should give it a thought and told me not to tell my daughter for the time being.”
“However I immediately told my daughter about it, and she started crying, saying she didn’t know that her boyfriend was so sexist.”
“She asked me what she could do now, and I told her that she wasn’t being forced and could cancel her marriage if she didn’t want it.”
The daughter decided to end things, leading to a lot of backlash from the groom’s family and some members of the wedding party.
“Well, that is exactly what happened and now her boyfriend and his parents are calling me saying I took away the love of his life etc…”
“On top of that, some of her friends (some were bridesmaids) said that I was an a**hole for breaking up what would’ve been a ‘healthy marriage’.”
“But it’s my daughter’s happiness that matters.”
The OP’s fellow Redditors rated the OP’s actions and reasoning on the following scale:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Redditors decided the OP was not the a**hole in this scenario.
“NTA. You saved your daughter from a life of hell. Sorry she had to go through that though.”
“I’m sure it was a shock to realize her ex and her almost-in-laws are misogynistic AH’s. Hope she’s doing okay.”
“7 years is a long time. How did this not ever come up before???” – No-Construction-17
“How him and his parents thought this was appropriate is honestly beyond me. OP you’re most definitely NTA, him and his parents are misogynistic a**holes, and I guess that some people just need to stop being stuck in the past.”
“You’ve DEFINITELY dodged a bullet here” – YeetedHypermeme
“Yes this is the most shocking part – the bride was not to know what they had planned for her life. There’s no possible way OP thinks he might be the a**hole for giving his daughter the information so she can decide for herself.” – ditchdiggergirl
Others said it sounded like the fiancé’s family was trying to “trap” her.
“Not wanting her at the meeting. Not wanting her to know what they had planned for her. These plans going against her wishes.”
“Sounds like they were all setting a trap for her and don’t care about what she wants at all. Anyone that describes this as healthy is wrong.”
“NTA -“ – NickNack878
“I almost get the feeling they would have waited until she wasn’t working for other reasons to reveal this side, so that she wouldn’t be able to leave….” – championcomet
“[They sound] abusive. Trap her with children, no job. No way to escape. Her dad is a hero.” – yettametta
One also said the OP did his job as a father.
“You didn’t take away the love of his life: you took away the baby-making workhorse of his life.”
“But your job isn’t to protect him or his parents: it’s to protect your daughter, which is what you did. And good thing too, because he was obviously pretending AF just to lock that in.”
“Imagine what he would have been like after marriage and a kid? Holy cow (which is basically what they were treating [her] as). NTA” – DilbertedOttawa
“Yeah, he was in love with the Stepford Wife he thought she was going to turn into, not with OP’s actual daughter.” – illegalrooftopbar
“There are many many many (far to many) domestic abuse survivors who tell stories of how their abuser was a perfect partner until they became married.”
“Now, I’m not saying this guy would turn into some violent abusive monster, just that it is not uncommon for some people to radically shift their attitude toward a partner one they have ‘secured the property.'”
“And this guy and his family definitely viewed your daughter [as] property.”
“A vessel who’s primary purpose was to make baby’s and be the sole care giver while the man continued to pursue the life and dreams he had before the marriage.”
“I know it can be hard to see, but your daughter would have likely been secretly miserable for years while she slowly suffocated under the thumb of these sexists clowns.” – hibernate
“I think that he knew what was going on, he said that the daughter was ‘not allowed’ to be at the meeting. And then afterwards, they told him not to tell his daughter.”
“He knew, they have all been hiding it. Now that the wedding was in the planning stages, they figured that it was too late to call off and they could get their way.”
“And BOO on the bridesmaids for jumping in about ‘healthy marriage’. They were obviously from the groom’s side, or at least on it…” – tphatmcgee
Reddit was clear in their judgment. This father did the right thing by telling his daughter what was said behind her back about her own future.