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Well-Off Man Balks After His Estranged Brother Demands He Fund His Niece’s Move To Paris

Young woman looking at Eiffel Tower
Daria Kulkova/Getty Images

What is it about estranged family members expecting money?

Redditor BamiRai is the latest target of this trend, and he’s not happy.

The Original Poster (OP) turned to subReddit “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) for feedback.

He asked:

“AITA for not paying for my niece to live in Paris?”

He went on to explain.

“I [38-year-old Male] have a brother “Tony” [40-year-old Male] who I despise. We never got along growing up. In fact, before yesterday, I haven’t seen him in 3 years.”

“My salary is ~$180k, and my husband makes more than me. We also have fruitful investments that generate quite a bit of passive income.”

“My husband [42-year-old Male] had full custody of his daughter “Harmony” from a previous relationship, and she is an angel. We bonded and she really felt like she was my daughter as well.”

“She is now 22, graduated from college Magna Cum Laude, and wants to work in fashion. She LOVES haute couture and wants to work in Paris.”

“The problem? Paris is expensive, and a lot of the positions that would consider her don’t pay well, especially with how expensive Paris is.”

“My husband and I decided to surprise her and sponsor her living expenses and additional allowance, so she doesn’t have to worry about income and can focus on her dream.”

“She was ecstatic and posted on social media about it.”

“Well, Tony’s daughter “Joy” [25-year-old Female] saw the post and told him. She has also been wanting to work in Paris for years.”

“I found this out because my parents invited my husband and me to dinner, and when we arrived, Tony was there too. The topic of us sending Harmony to Paris conveniently came up.”

“They suggested that we sponsor Joy to go to Paris too because Harmony and Joy were basically cousins and could bond over a shared experience.”

“I calmly said, ‘No, we aren’t responsible for financing Joy. Tony can pay for Joy if he wants her to go to Paris.’”

“He aggressively responded that he doesn’t make enough money for that and we are just showboating our money.”

“I said that it is not our responsibility to send Joy to Paris simply because Harmony was going. They are not sisters and don’t even have a relationship with each other.”

“So if Tony couldn’t afford it, tough s**t.This led to a long drawn-out argument and then it came out that Tony had already told Joy a month ago that we promised to pay.”

“He also said that ‘I would be a sh*tty uncle if I didn’t pay for my niece but would pay for someone who isn’t even my biological daughter’.”

“Now, this is where I might be the AH because my blood boiled.”

“I said that Joy was NOT my niece because he is NOT any brother of mine. My husband and I left and, shortly after, Joy called me begging to pay to let her go.”

“I was still enraged and yelled, ‘I don’t understand how you and your father think you can use me as an ATM when neither of you has ever been family to me. Pay for yourself!’ and I hung up.”

“After a few more hours, I have cooled down and started seeing the family backlash against me on social media.”

“A lot of people say that I am punishing Joy because I hate Tony. I’m still not going to pay for her, but Joy technically is innocent in all of this, I guess.”

“And a lot of my resentment is towards Tony, not her.”

“My parents have called and said they were disappointed in how I think of family, so AITA?

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

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

Redditors decided:

“NTA. Your brother is TA for telling Joy that you promised to pay. And an AH in general for expecting you to finance this without even discussing it first.”

“Though I think you should apologize to Joy and probably explain that you never promised it. Let her know that you can’t financially support both of them going to Paris.” – weissbian

“I’m guessing from your post that you also don’t have much of, if any, relationship with Joy.”

“I’m confused why they think they’re entitled to the fruits of your labor?”

“And if your parents think someone besides Tony should pay, they’re free to do so but it’s bizarre that they think they should try to pressure you into it.”

“Good luck with your toxic family, and obviously NTA.” – tracyerickson

“NTA — Joy is complicit in her father’s behavior, so no, she’s not innocent in all of this. It was, by your account, her idea.” – CRichardDavies


“All of these family members who are so enraged can pay for your niece to go to Paris. Tony should start a gofundme. Watch it get zero dollars.” – avocadosdontbite

“NTA. Joy is 25 and has no relationship with you. Tony lied to his daughter and should apologize for that.”

“You don’t owe anyone an apology. After being told no, she should’ve dropped the subject instead of calling and begging.” – shenanigansco34

“NTA. Your brother tried to use “family” as his reason to pressure you into paying.”

“Unless Joy pressured you, she probably thought you were going to do it. She probably deserves an apology.” – PeanutGallery10

“NTA at all, and while you spoke very strongly to your brother, he was being an aggressive mooch and thoroughly deserved to be torn down.”

“What I really hate is the way your parents trapped you into this confrontation. They didn’t tell you what was in store when they invited you to dinner, right? Just suddenly there it is: gimme gimme.”

“Of course, you have a wonderful relationship with your daughter and not much of one with your niece, so the thinking that it’s only symmetrical that you should pay for Joy is stupid.”

“But your brother isn’t “thinking.” He wants money from you because he wants money fro0m you.”

“That’s all it is: a mooch.”

“And you should tell the relatives calling up to attack that they can pay for Joy if they feel that way about it.” – RealbadtheBandit


“Tony is a massive T A.”

“1. You are not his ATM.”

“2. He is wrong to harass, slander, and bully you.”

“3. He should respect your answer. You don’t owe him an explanation. You don’t owe him anything.”

“4. Blood doesn’t make one family. Harmony is your family.”

“Joy is also T A here.”

“1. She’s an adult and fully responsible for her own finances. She is 25!!!”

“2. She has never treated you like family.”

“3. She is responsible for HERSELF.”

“4. She should be embarrassed by her father’s behaviour and be apologizing for.”

“5. She is acting entitled.”

“Your parents are T A.”

“1. They should absolutely be telling your brother and Joy to back off.”

“2. They should be disappointed in your brother and Joy, NOT you.”

“I guarantee you Tony is spreading lies to your family. I suggest posting and replying the following.”

“‘Husband and I are incredibly proud of Harmony, including graduating from college Magna Cum Laude and her upcoming fashion internship. She has worked incredibly hard.’”

“‘Harmony is everything one could hope for in a daughter. She is smart, kind, loving, and grateful.’”

“‘I couldn’t be luckier to be her bonus Dad and to help support her achieve her dreams. Way to go Harmony.’” – Smiley-Canadian

“NTA. Based on this post and OP’s comment, it seems obvious that Joy only wants OP’s money. Tony should never have promised his daughter money that was not his to give away.”

“OP, if I were you, I would apologize for the tone but not the meaning. Both Tony and Joy are using you as an ATM, and you rightfully won’t stand for that.”

“Also, it drives me NUTS that Tony called Harmony not your daughter. You clearly are a beloved father figure to her. That’s more than enough in my book.” – kowaiyoukai

The OP went on to update his post, one of the last ones stating:

“Hi again everyone. Thanks for the input. I decided that I would apologize to Joy for how I spoke to her, not that I refuse to pay.”

“Although some of you have suggested that she wasn’t innocent in all of this, after reading a lot of your comments I personally think that I unleashed anger meant for another person on her.”

“The other thing that I noticed was the mentioning of my brother being 40 and Joy being 25.”

“At first, I wasn’t going to mention age because I didn’t want to seem like I was taking a jab at my brother’s life decisions (wasn’t relevant to the post that he was a teen dad), but I also didn’t want to make it seem like Joy was a 11-year old girl.”

“So I put ages in there to show that she is an adult and not TOO far from my age, which somewhat played a role in the dynamics of our interaction.”

“But yea, that’s it. I will give her a very specific, short apology. I will not pay for her to live wherever.”

“And I’m going NO contact with my brother and LC with my parents until they figure out that they have to stop trying to force Tony and I to be brotherly.”

“Thanks for your comments.”

Family is for putting up boundaries…

Written by B. Miller

B. is a creative multihyphenate who enjoys the power and versatility of the written word. She enjoys hiking, great food and drinks, traveling, and vulnerable conversation. Raised below the Mason Dixon, thriving above it. (she/her)