When families come together to create a new one after a divorce, there are unquestionably going to be complications from time to time.
But sometimes, there are people who want to deliberately sabotage the relationship, admitted the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor throw_dad7755 thought he was doing the right thing by only walking one of his daughters down the aisle.
But when he was openly criticized by his family, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was wrong.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for refusing to walk my daughter down the aisle?”
The OP had varying relationships with his daughters.
“I (49 Male) have 2 daughters, Marie (27) and Julie (23).”
“For context, Julie is not my biological daughter since I married my current wife when she was only 2, and since her dad was absent, I adopted her as my own but I love both my daughters the same.”
“This being said, I am closer to Julie since she has and still lives with us and we do almost everything together.”
“Instead, Marie is closer to her mom, mainly cause her mom got full custody of her and has never lived with me.”
The OP had already agreed to walk Julie down the aisle.
“Now, to the main issue: Julie got engaged about a year ago and immediately asked me to walk her down the aisle.”
“I, of course, agreed and have actively helped her with the planning of the wedding, which is scheduled for October 2022.”
The OP didn’t have the same reaction when Marie asked him.
“A couple of weeks ago, Marie asked me to go grab some coffee with her and let me know she’s currently pregnant and will soon get married.”
“To be honest, this caught me off-guard since I didn’t even know she had a boyfriend.”
“She apparently will have quite a fast wedding since she doesn’t want to show too much, meaning her wedding will be in 3 months.”
“She says it’ll be a small ceremony and asked me to walk her down the aisle.”
“I felt weird about it since I don’t even know her fiancé and it was all so sudden, so I asked her to let me think about it.”
“It seemed like this answer surprised her but she understood.”
The OP talked it over with Julie and his wife.
“I then went home and let my wife and daughter know.”
“Julie asked me to please decline since she wanted to be the first to be walked down the aisle and since she asked first, thinks that I have a stronger commitment to her.”
“I agreed since this is more of an Us thing rather than an after-thought like Marie’s wedding.”
The OP told Marie his decision.
“I then sent a message to Marie letting her know of my decision with a brief explanation.”
“I even offered options like her mom or step-dad to walk with her.”
“I also reassured her that I’d still be with her there and support her with anything.”
Marie didn’t take it well.
“She almost immediately called me crying and telling me how much of a horrible father I am and how I apparently have always played favorites.”
“This hurt me since it’s simply not true, I love them both.”
“I tried to explain my reasoning, but she said it doesn’t matter and doesn’t care about my excuses. She ended up hanging up.”
The reactions across the family were mixed.
“My ex has been sending me tons of texts, berating me, and calling me names.”
“Now word has spread to some family members and they are calling me a deadbeat and trash.”
“My wife and daughter agree that my decision is the only fair one and shouldn’t be pressured into doing something I don’t want.”
“I’m starting to feel guilty but I’m honestly unsure.”
“AITA for refusing to walk my daughter down the aisle?”
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 were angry about the prioritization of Julie’s feelings over Marie’s.
“YTA. You should be walking them both down the aisle instead of just picking one over the other.”
“Julie wanting to be the first to be walked down the aisle is frankly a ridiculous request and if you explained that as your reasoning to your daughter no wonder she was crying down the phone.” – FuriousPottah
“What the f**k, if Marie had happened to get married first a few years ago, would Julie be snubbing OP now and refusing to let him walk her down the aisle because Marie already got to do it…?”
“Like, the whole ‘firsties’ things makes zero godd**n sense.” – Sweaty_Potential8258
“Julie is insecure about Marie being OP’s biological kid and wants to ensure that she’s OP’s only actual child with respect to their relationship. So no sharing anything with Marie; everything Julie wants from OP needs to be Julie’s alone.”
“And they (Julie and OP’s wife) claim they’re just respecting what OP wants to do when they’re the ones who told him to make that choice in the first place. I bet it’s not the first time something like this has happened.”
“Absolutely YTA.” – calling_water
“The fact that OP had to go home and check with his wife and stepdaughter before he could answer his daughter really shows this issue.”
“They’ve made such an issue of making sure that Julie is always put first, and to make sure that Julie’s feelings are the top priority that OP had to check with them before he could tell his daughter if he could walk her down the aisle or not.”
“I’m going to guess that this was a big deal for her to ask, and this was most likely OPs last chance to have a real relationship with his daughter… And he showed her EXACTLY where she stands.” – Wild_Statement_3142
“He should be grateful for still being invited.”
“OP needs to grow a spine and stop playing favorites.”
“This ‘I need to be first’ game his younger daughter is playing is just selfish and a deliberate sabotage on the relationship he has with his older daughter.” – Academic_Snow_7680
Others agreed and said the OP wasn’t trying to know Marie.
“OP, YTA! Your excuse about not knowing your daughter has a boyfriend is showing how detached are you from her life, and the moment she reaches out to you, you run back to your new family.”
“She has every right to say how you play favorites. While you may not think you do, your actions say otherwise.”
“In addition, regardless if you know the boyfriend or not, you are being asked to be there to support your daughter.” – DVus1
“And as a child of a man who is an exceptional stepfather but threw away his relationship with his biological children in order to be that excellent stepfather, let me tell you (OP particularly), that s**t hurts.”
“20+ years later, times where my Dad rejected me so he could please his stepchildren still haunt me, and our relationship will probably never fully recover.” – hnsnrachel
“He says he’s very close with Julie and they do a lot together but he doesn’t play favorites. Then he says he didn’t even know his other daughter had a boyfriend!” – mammyeagle54
“I think Julie is a manipulative trouble maker. She has deliberately driven a wedge between OP and his Daughter. I will bet she has played the ‘long game’ and slowly been degrading their relationship over time with stunts like this one.”
“No wonder OP’s daughter hasn’t introduced her boyfriend – Julie would probably cause trouble with him also.”
“OP has sacrificed his relationship with his Daughter. If he wants to treat his Daughters equally – he should be walking them both down the aisle.”
“OP is YTA, The trouble with his Daughter started the day Julie’s mum walked into his life. Bet she has encouraged the shunning of OP’s daughter too. This is just so sad.”
“OP – WALK YOUR DAUGHTER DOWN THE AISLE. Don’t be manipulated by selfish, entitled brats.” – V-838
“With the way he approached the situation: asking wife and Julie about a decision OP should be making.”
“It makes me wonder if there is another underlying reason as to why OP has a distanced relationship with his bio daughter, Marie.”
“Especially because Marie seems to still treasures the little relationship she has with OP, yet he doesn’t know a thing about her life.” – really_tired-person
After receiving feedback, the OP shared an update.
“I don’t know what to do now. These comments have really opened my eyes to how horrible I was to my daughter.”
“I feel like I’ve been oblivious to several things I did and allowed to happen. I feel like the worse AH there is and I don’t even know if there’s room to fix it.”
“I’ll try to reach out to her, but after reading your opinions, I doubt she’ll accept, and I’d totally get it.”
The OP may have thought he was doing the right thing at first, but the subReddit was quick to put him in his place, siding entirely with Marie.
Hopefully, it won’t be too late for father and daughter to reconcile, celebrate Marie’s wedding, and have a long life of fulfilling relationship ahead of them.