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Dad Shamed For Excluding Son’s Girlfriend With Mobility Issues From Hike While On Vacation

A family going hiking.
Imgorthand/Getty Images

In any group setting or outing, it’s always important to make sure everyone is included in one way or another.

Particularly if the chosen activities aren’t something certain group members are familiar with.

Sometimes, when a group chooses to do something outside of one of the members’ zones of interest, they might feel deliberately left out, even if that wasn’t remotely the case.

Redditor throwawyaitav recently planned a family vacation on which two of his children were bringing their significant others.

However, the original poster (OP)’s son wasn’t thrilled that one of the planned excursions was one his girlfriend would have trouble participating in.

When the OP’s son asked him if he could choose another activity, the OP declined, further angering his son.

Wondering if he was being insensitive, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for refusing to change my travel plans to accommodate my son’s girlfriend who has physical limitations?”

The OP explained why his son took issue with his planned vacation itinerary:

“I love camping and hiking on the weekends.”

“My wife always hated it and hardly went, and one of my children doesn’t like it either, but to my happiness, my children Emma (25 F[emale]) and Mike (28 M[ale]) love it, and we do it several times a year.”

“Mike has been with Jenny (26 F) for 1y (ish), and she has some mobility difficulties.”

“She can walk, but not long distances.”

“She is a kind and good girl. We have a great relationship, and because of that, my wife and I invited her to go to the beach with us and the rest of the family.”

“I wanted to go to this beach because of a nearby trail that led to a wonderful beach and on the second day of the trip (7 days), I announced that I would do this trail and Emma agreed to go along, her boyfriend did too and I invited Mike to go.”

“Later that day, he pulled me aside asking if we could actually go to another beach accessible by car so Jenny could go too.”

“I said I didn’t want to because I wanted to do the trail and see this beach, but that we could do that on another day, but the next day would be this trail.”

“Mike said that Jenny was feeling left out of not being able to participate, as my daughter was also taking her boyfriend and she would be left out due to her physical limitations.”

“I pointed out the fact that four people besides her weren’t going on this hike either and I’m not refusing to do that, but that tomorrow I had other plans.”

“He said that I should understand her situation and not force a situation in which she is clearly being excluded by physical limitations and that if that were the case, he wouldn’t go either.”

“I agreed and said okay.”

“The next day, by a miracle, my other son wanted to go and the four of us went on this trail.”

“My son barely talk to me properly the whole trip (Jenny too) and when I suggested we go to another beach by car, he said I had some nerve to suggest that after all.”

“My wife and the rest of the family have decided to stay out of this, but I’m at a loss.”


Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation, by declaring:

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

The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to cancel his planned hiking trip to accommodate Jenny.

Everyone agreed that the OP was in no way trying to exclude Jenny but merely planned an excursion that everyone was welcome to join if they wanted to, and Mike shouldn’t have gotten so upset over one outing on a seven-day trip.


“Your son and his girlfriend can spend some time together. It’s not a big deal.”

“This is one day on your trip.”

“It’s not like you have designed the entire trip to exclude her.”

“This is going to be life for your son and his girlfriend, and people are going to want to do things she’s not capable of doing.”

“Them having to spend the day together isn’t the biggest deal.”- muonSec

“I don’t get it.”

“Is this what happened?”

“You invited Mike and Jenny to join you on a week-long beach vacation (so your vacation, presumably, you were paying for it…)”

“You spent one day doing a hike you wanted to do and then said the next day you could do what Mike suggested.”

“Because you went on a hike that you wanted to do on your vacation, Mike and Jenny aren’t speaking to you?”

“Mike and Jenny are spoiled much?”

“NTA.”- Quick-Possession-245


“Part of getting older and dealing with your own health issues is understanding you can and can’t do some things.”

“Just how it is.”

“I LOVE hiking and camping.”

“But I can’t go for some 20+ mile trek this weekend.”

“My body just can’t do it right now.”

“I can do a few miles for sure and really enjoy it.”

“So if someone wants to go for a 20 mile trail run- I can’t do it.”

“But they should if they like it!”

“Going on family trips involves doing stuff together, separately, and in small groups.”

“That is the FUN of family trips.”

“Doing everything together all the time is exhausting.”

“Hey- I am going on this long hike that I personally absolutely love and it is the highlight of my trip.”

“The rest of the week I am down to do WHATEVER y’all want. If anyone wants to join- feel free.”

“But I am leaving at X time and getting back sometime before X time.”

“Especially with grown kids.”

“How many trips have you done that you had zero desire to do any of the activities but you did them because of the joy you got from watching your kids build memories?”

“Yeah- she can’t do it.”

“I understand it may be hard.”

“But hey… that is life.”

“This is only one part of a long week.”

“And you (I am sure) are accommodating her as much as possible.”

“Maturing is understanding it ain’t about her it is about each person getting to do things they love.”-Innerouterself2


“I did multiple vacations with a big number of grown-ups.”

“‘Divide and conquer’ is typical.”

“Not everything can be done together or wanted.”

“She had options she could have done with the rest of the family and her boyfriend.”

“You didn’t force anybody.”

“My understanding is that you would have been happy even alone so…”

“I really don’t see the problem here.”- KikiMadeCrazy

“This was the solution the entire time.”

“Mike was excluding her by agreeing to go.”

“When she complained he then flipped the blame on to you.”

“Mike should have taken the lead from the get-go, declined the hike, and made alternate plans with Jenny for the day.”

“NTA.”-  facinationstreet

“As someone with physical limitations: NTA.”

“Sounds very selfish of your son, and especially her.”

“She’s invited on a beach vacation.”

“I’m sure she’s not paying a lot, if any. She knows her limitations.”

“The vacation does NOT revolve around her.”- Illustrious_Law_484


“Seriously, Jenny doesn’t have to do everything the group wants to do.”

“I feel your son and Jenny were trying to make everything friendly for her.”

“It sucks she has limitations, but it those limitations don’t give her the right to basically guilt trip people into not getting to do what they want to do as well, just because she couldn’t.”- Lunar-Eclipse0204


“You took a seven-day trip, and some of you split off for one day.”

“There’s not a damn thing wrong with that.”- OkeyDokey654


“Surely she can’t think that everyone will stop doing activities she can’t do?”

“No one is ever to do anything she knows about that she can’t do?”


“That’s ridiculous.”

“She needs to get over herself.”

“I have things that sometimes prevent me from joining in activities.”

“I get sad, sure.”

“But I tell everyone else to have a grand ol time and I’ll stay back and relax.”

“The world doesn’t stop because some of us have body limits.”- Ihateyou1975


“There’s no law saying all of you have to do everything together every day, and agreeing to go to the car-accessible beach with Mike and Jenny another day is perfectly acceptable.”- WelfordNelferd

It would be one thing if the OP were effortfully trying to exclude Jenny from their vacation by intentionally planning excursions and activities he knew would be difficult for her to participate in.

However, as the OP was planning a day trip that he welcomed (but didn’t require) others to join in on, it’s hard not to agree that Mike overreacted.

Even so, Mike was also only concerned that Jenny would feel included and accommodated on the trip.

Making it hard to call Mike’s behavior truly selfish.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.