in , ,

Dad Refuses To Buy His Entitled Son A Car For Graduation After Getting Stuck Paying His Rent

Man holding new car keys
StockerThings/Getty Images

Though this may not be true for every parent in the world, most parents do their best to provide for their children and lead them to be kind people, as well as positive, contributing members of society.

But try as they might, occasionally a kid grows up to sound more like the other influences they’ve surrounded themselves with, rather than their parents’ careful teachings, cringed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor Ill_Air_2551 had no idea where the attitude was coming from, but he was struggling with his youngest son’s behavior and attitude towards him, which was derogatory and spiteful compared to his older siblings.

Because of how his youngest son treated the family, the Original Poster (OP) considered not covering the same adult expenses he’d covered for his older children who had already graduated from college and gone on to start their adult lives.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for not buying my son a car like I did for the rest of his siblings?”

The OP was considering going back on a promise he’d made to his youngest son.

“I (49 Male) have four kids, twin boys (both 27), one girl (25 Female), and another son (21 Male). This post is about my youngest son, Jack.”

“Since they were children, I promised my kids two things: one, I’ll fully pay for all of their college expenses (housing/tuition/food, etc.), and two, once they graduate college, I will buy them a car.”

“I kept that promise for all my kids, except with Jack, and now I want to know if I am an a**hole for that.”

The OP had multiple big reasons for not wanting to buy a car for Jack.

“I paid for Jack’s college expenses, but I am refusing to buy him a car. Below are some of the reasons why:”

“I co-signed my name on the lease for Jack’s room that he rents with a friend, and I send Jack his portion of the rent every month. The friend started taking advantage of my name being on the lease and stopped paying for rent too, knowing I would cover the amount because I don’t want missed payments on my credit score.”

“I asked Jack multiple times to ask his roommate to pay his portion, but the boy did not care to even respond to me, and I ended up paying for six months of his friend’s rent, too, until I finally solved the problem by getting my name out of the lease.”

“Jack has a very rude and entitled attitude. He speaks to us like we are his low-performing employees, and the only time he contacts us is when he wants money and goes no contact otherwise, and we don’t know what we ever did to him to treat us that way.”

“Last year when my wife had to be hospitalized, all of my kids flew back home to be there for their mother. Jack didn’t want to, but one of his siblings bought him a ticket and talked him into flying out.”

“Instead of being glad to be beside his very sick mother at the hospital, he spent the entire visit making everyone run errands for him (his sister had to cook a very specific type of meal for him, we had to drive him to the gym at a very specific time he demanded, etc.), and acted like it was one huge inconvenience for him to have to fly out.”

Jack’s older siblings all sided with the OP.

“I even talked to my other kids about whether we were bad parents that caused Jack to act this way, but all my other kids don’t know why he ended up so entitled and spoiled.”

“The rest of my kids are extremely different from Jack; we all get along with each other and care about one another.”

“For the rest of my kids, I spent maybe 100 thousand dollars on each kid’s total college expenses. With Jack’s careless spending habits and unwillingness to save us any money, Jack’s college years ended up costing me 180 thousand dollars. So I refused to buy the promised car.”

But the OP’s in-laws lashed out at him.

“Jack’s upset and has gone to his grandparents complaining about me.”

“My MIL (Mother-in-Law) already hates me and now is calling me an a**hole, saying I am playing favorites because I bought everyone a car and not Jack.”


Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some reassured the OP that his son was in the wrong, not him.

“Hmm, is the son the AH? A son who has been given literally double what his siblings have received from an extremely generous parent, who he now doesn’t respect or care about (as shown in the post), and STILL goes crying to MeeMaw when he thinks he is hard done by? That son?”

“That boy needs a wake-up call now before he continues the way he is going and fucks up his life. Like a good parent should do.”

“Oh yeah, NTA, OP.” – comfortablynumb15

“NTA. Go buy him a hot wheels car or a remote control car. You probably never said what kind of car you would buy for your kids.”

“Especially since you gave him cash during his college years that ultimately from his car fund. Plus his attitude towards family is ridiculous, and if he goes no contact with you all the time except when he wants money means he just sees you as an ATM and not someone he loves.” – needabook5

“NTA. If I were being petty, I’d buy a junker used car for him. If he wants to be so technical about holding you to a promise, well, that’s his car. Tell him the rest of the budget was eaten up by the 80k. Time for him to learn the consequences of his actions.” – namesaretoohardforme

“NTA. For people saying that you raised Jack to be that way, they are completely ignoring the fact that we are human beings and not robots. At some point, personalities start to factor in.”

“My family’s situation is similar to yours, and I think during the teenage years, adjustments had to be made to accommodate the different personalities in order to set us up for success. My brothers and I did not respond to the same treatment, and we received different privileges accordingly.”

“My family would have given me the receipts and bills for my expenses if I acted that entitled. Perhaps that may be what Jack needs instead of a car and help him get a clue.” – Whole_Accountant6150

“From all the comments saying you and your wife made him this way by giving him everything, I disagree. Much like yourself, my parents gave me almost everything I wanted and I was never anything other than grateful. I knew how hard they worked to give me and my siblings a wonderful life.”

“Spoiling people doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll eventually take advantage of you. Your other kids don’t act like Jack so that’s a clear sign this is a him problem. He’s become selfish and apathetic even towards his ill mother.”

“You should cut him off completely and no more favors or running errands for him. He can start working and earn his own money, maybe that will be the wake-up call he needs to see how much you’ve done for him.” – puchungu

But others questioned if the OP had done as perfect of a job parenting as he let on.


“If you cosigned on the lease, and you were worried about those missed payments, why didn’t YOU talk to the roommate instead of making your young adult son do it?”

“If Jack has a rude and entitled attitude, I doubt this is something that magically occurred at 21 years old. Children are often a product of their parents and the environment they grew up in, take some accountability for their actions. It’s great you want to do something about it now; but if you had done more when he was younger, you probably wouldn’t be in this situation.”

“Jack is the youngest. He’s the low man on the family totem pole. Why was everyone honoring these requests? Is behavior like this why Jack acts the way he does?”

“You’re NTA for not wanting to give your son a car with his behavior, but YTA for allowing his behavior to get to this point.” – makethatnoise

“100 thousand dollars on the other three kids and 180 thousand on Jack, and only now is his behavior a problem? Sounds like OP is reaping what he has sewn.” – FloMoJoeBlow

“NTA, but I can also understand why he is upset. But honestly, the fact he can complain when you paid for his entire tuition is insane.”

“Maybe it would have been better if you added an ‘if you keep a good attitude’ addendum to the promise, but I’m cherry-picking. I can understand why he is upset, but you are completely justified.” – swaggysalamander

“YTA on this one. If you make a commitment, especially to someone when they’re a child, and they see you follow through with all three of their older siblings, you really need to see it through. Otherwise, they’ll never feel they can rely on you to follow through for them.”

“The kid can mature over his lifetime, but even if he does, 20 years from now, he’ll still be bothered by it and his unequal status with his other three siblings. If he feels the need to make his son suffer, there will be plenty of other ways, but not helping with the first house, the wedding, not giving any gifts to the grandchildren, giving better gifts to the other three siblings on holidays, and birthdays to show him his lower status, etc.”

“On the chance he’ll grow up and mature, are you sure you want to be harsh with him just because he’s an a** at this point in his life? Think longer term, and if the answer is yes, then kick him hard every way you can.” – fromdecatur

“ESH: I get why you don’t want to, but you didn’t promise what KIND OF CAR…”

“So: uphold your promise, by buying a simple, cheap, ‘remember all that extra money I spent on rent that was taken advantage of? Well, here you go,’ kind of car.”

“As far as being fair to ALL siblings go, you have to follow through, even when he doesn’t. Prove to him that your word carries weight, even when his doesn’t. Just close this chapter already about a promised car.”

“Sounds like this is a bigger problem, though. OBVIOUSLY, he sucks because he didn’t learn to appreciate your name as a co-signer, NOR did he appreciate the fact you paid the rent for his roommate, who somehow managed to talk him into breaking your trust.”

“He was also a jerk to his mom and siblings. You gave him a chance to be an adult and speak and act for himself beyond the co-sign aspect, but he just decided he’d rather shut you out or get your money rather than your respect.”

“And you, as far as PARENTING goes, don’t bring your other kids into it! ‘Gasp! Did I do something wrong?!’ Of course, you have to look deeper. This is why I’m giving you an ESH. You should be having a debate about your parenting with a therapist, your spouse, but not the siblings.”

“If you had a habit of relying on them regarding him (by parentifying your other kids) and tend to include them in discussions about how to handle your youngest, without actually including your youngest, you have to accept this is most likely part of your very, very bigger-than-a-car problem.” – Throhwehweh

This was one of those situations that left the subReddit shaking their heads at Jack’s behavior, but they were a little more divided over the OP’s contributions to it. While most sided with the OP and felt that Jack was in serious need of a wake-up call, some felt that the OP was more involved in his attitude than he was willing to admit.

No matter whose fault it was, Jack needed to seriously get in touch with reality before his attitude made him lose something much more important than a paid-off car.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan has been a part of the George Takei family since 2019 when she wrote some of her favorite early pieces: Sesame Street introducing its first character who lived in foster care and Bruce Willis delivering a not-so-Die-Hard opening pitch at a Phillies game. She's gone on to write nearly 3,000 viral and trending stories for George Takei, Comic Sands, Percolately, and ÜberFacts. With an unstoppable love for the written word, she's also an avid reader, poet, and indie novelist.