When one single dad allowed his 11-year-old daughter to have friends over for a birthday sleepover he did not expect to have a confrontation with another parent over his hearing impairment.
When a parent he hadn’t met yet came to drop off their daughter to his home, he was surprised to find the mother’s concern over his disability.
As a result, the Original Poster (OP) AITA_Throwit asked the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit:
“AITA for Not Telling People that were Coming to stay at my House that I am Deaf?”
The OP explained:
“I (39 M[ale]) am a single father to 4 kids, I am deaf, 3 of my kids are deaf. My 11[year-old] (yo) daughter is [hard of hearing] but wears a hearing aid and with it she is almost completely hearing.”
“She goes to a hearing school where as my other 3 go to a deaf school. Also lockdown restrictions have been lifted where I live.”
“My 11yo just turned 11 a week ago and she wanted to have 2 of her friends over for a slumber party. I said yes.”
“I already knew one of the girl’s moms that she invited but I hadn’t met the other one(I’ll call her Callie). My daughter gave me Callie’s moms number and I messaged her and just invited her over, said date/time etc.”
“She seemed pretty chill and I never really thought to mention that I’m deaf, like when I think of myself being deaf obviously isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. She arranged to drop her daughter off around noon.”
“When she came to drop her off I went to go get the door and she started to say something to me, I then signed ‘Sorry, I’m deaf, I can’t hear you’. She looked at me shocked and then pulled out her phone and started to text me.”
“We had an argument over text while we stood right next to each other. I had said that I was gonna drive the girls to get some fast food, she (without asking) said ‘But you can’t even drive’.”
“I replied ‘I’ve been driving since I was 14. Never once had an accident and only have had 3 speeding tickets in my life’.”
“She then replied ‘What about parking tickets?’ I then said ‘This isn’t an interrogation plus aren’t I just taking them through the drive through?’”
“She said some other things about how she doesn’t feel safe leaving her daughter here because of the language barrior although I wouldn’t speak to them much anyway and my daughter can interpret just fine.”
“I said ‘Would you feel the same way about someone who’s parents only spoke Spanish?’ Any language really would work that was just what came to mind first.”
“She replied that is totally different. I don’t really see how though, then I just said ‘I’m not gonna beg you to let your kid sleepover, if you don’t want her to then take her’.”
“She got really offended by that but said she would let her stay and left. Then she proceeded to call and text Callie every 2 seconds.”
”Callie turned her phone to silent while they watched a movie, then I started getting tons of messages calling me a ‘Sick creep’ and saying she was gonna call 911 because her daughter didn’t answer her phone for 20 minutes.”
“I replied that she had just turned off her phone and there was no reason to be alarmed.”
“A few minutes later she came to my house, didn’t even knock on the door, just opened it and yelled to her daughter that they were leaving.”
“Her daughter started to cry because she had been having a good time but she kept saying ‘Are you ok? Are you hurt?’ (My daughter and her other friend told me that later.)”
“Now I feel like TA and I could’ve just avoided the situation if I had told her mother earlier, so AITA?”
OP asked Redditors what they took from the situation by deciding:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors passed judgement of NTA for this dad.
Many pointed out the mom’s ableist attitude and extreme reaction.
“NTA. She sounds extremely ableist. Being deaf does not make you a bad father OR a creep, and I’m so sorry you’ve had to deal with this.”
“It might be best for you and your family to ban Callie from sleeping over for your own protection, but make it clear Callie did absolutely nothing wrong. Again, I’m so sorry people like this exist.”~Kruisi
”NTA. I hate to say it, but I would not have this child over to your home anymore. Any parent that jumps to calling you a ‘sick creep’ is going to be problematic moving forward.”
“Sorry to your kid, but it’s just not worth it when mom is nutty imo.”~comfycrewneck
”WHAT THE F*CK DOES THIS LADY HAVE UP HER A**?? When I was in 6th grade I went over to a friends house and her mom was deaf.”
“When I went home and told my mom (she had only talked to her dad) she took me to the library to get some books so we could both learn to talk to her mom.”
“My mom never made me feel like there was any reason I couldn’t trust this woman and once I started learning sign language and communicating with her mom, my friend and her mom would teach me more and more.”
“I loved it and it still comes in handy to this day! F*ck that lady. NTA”~redmooncat15
”NTA! She was a snobby ableist one.”
“You didn’t have to let her know in advance that you are deaf, because it doesn’t affect at all your ability to look after Callie, and any non ignorant person knows that.”
“I’m sorry for Callie, and your kid thought, what a bummer of a birthday, buy her some ice cream to make up for it.”~Lily2404
”NTA. That lady sounds nuts, most likely she doesn’t have any experienced dealing with anyone different than herself (bet she’d freak for a variety of other reasons including race, if you were one of two dads, etc).”
“Some people just can’t handle anything outside of their tiny comfort zone. I’ve dealt with this a few times with my kids on the spectrum, but most people are good.”
“I would say that your only minor fault is not letting people know that they’d have to text you due to hearing impairment, since it involves communication with the other parent. It has the benefit of cluing in the clueless, but also sets expectations for methods of communication since their child is in your care.”
“But holy cow, questioning your driving ability? That’s a whole new level of ignorant.”~verminiusrex
Communication—in whatever form—is key.
However, as the subReddit pointed out, if you react to someone’s disability in a hostile manner, you’re the a**hole.