Redditor Total-Passion-4177 is a 19-year-old woman whose father died when she was four years old.
She is estranged from her grandparents on her father’s side and she thought she would never see them again.
But fate had other plans.
After an unexpected encounter with them turned into a dramatic confrontation, she visited the “Am I the a**hole?” (AITA) subReddit and asked:
“AITA For Pretending To Not Know My Grandparents?’
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“Just for background information, when I (19 f[emale]) was 4 years old my dad died. At his funeral his parents told me, my mom (28 yo at the time) and my sister (6 yo at the time) that we are the reasons he died.”
“They also kept his life insurance money, that was supposed to go to my sister and I.”
“Since then, my grandparents have refused contact with all three of us and the only form of contact I have with them is them sending me and my sister a $50 gift card to Walmart twice a year (birthday’s and Christmas).”
“The last time I received a gift card from them was on my 10th birthday and it was for Baby’sRUs. I haven’t heard from them since.”
“They live in Florida and I live in New York so I have no chance of seeing them either, at least I thought.”
“Flash forward to present day, 3 days ago now, I was in Walmart near my house to get a few things for my mom. When I walked past the pharmacy I saw my dads parents.”
“I tried to hide in the isles because I didn’t want confrontation, but they saw me anyway.”
“They started asking me a bunch of questions about my families financial situations and college and if I’m married yet, stuff like that. I responded by saying ‘I have no idea who you are.'”
“They looked angry and shocked by this but told me who they were and after that I told them I had no desire to talk to them and I didn’t have anything to say to them anyway.”
“I started walking away and was just going to leave it alone, but then they said ‘you’re so disrespectful. we are your grandparents and you need to treat us better than that. your mom did a terrible job with you.’”
“After that comment I turned around and went off on them. I said something along the lines of ‘you are not my grandparents because you abandoned my sister and I after telling us we are the reasons for our dads death and you stole his money from us.”
“Don’t you dare talk about my mother either because she did an amazing job with us without any help from you two. I’d be happy with never seeing your sorry faces again.’”
“I started to walk away again and heard my grandmother start to cry, but I kept walking.”
“AITA? The are technically my grandparents, but they did so many things that are unforgivable.”
Strangers on the internet were asked to declare one of the following:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Redditors had no sympathy for the grandparents.
“NTA. They are essentially strangers to you, of their own volition. You reap what you sow.” – Special_Respond7372
“I think it speaks well of OP’s mom that her child could stand up for themselves and make a boundary. I love that. It also isn’t a lie- OP doesn’t know them at their choice.”
“I love what was said ‘reap what you sow’. So true.” – RareEmperorPenguin
“Totally NTA. I had zero to do with my dad’s parents growing up – they were abusive to him (and his 3 siblings all of who turned out very f’ked up) and they seriously fell out shortly after I was born.”
“I didn’t have any contact with any of my dad’s family until I was about 13 when my then-stepmum encouraged my dad to get back in touch with them.”
“I’ve seen them since probably about 6 times. I have no interest in having a relationship with them. They are cruel people who never tried to be in my life, both as a child and when my dad reestablished his relationship with them – even when he got back in touch I only ever saw them when he took me round, they never contacted me themselves or invited me round.”
“They could have had a relationship with me at any point but they chose not to. The same goes for my dad’s siblings – again he got back in touch with one of his sisters and I’ve met her where she proceeded to ‘act as auntie’ to me and my sister, but she’s a stranger to me. I’m not going to pretend I love somebody I have never met or know at all.”
“They’re all incredible narcissists so I have no desire to have anything to do with them and I don’t think that makes me an a**hole. My granddad died the other year and apart from feeling sad for my dad, I felt no grief.”
“I have no interest in forging a relationship with my grandma now she’s alone. Maybe that’s mean but they didn’t bother with me when I was a child, so I have no desire to bother with them now they’re old and potentially regretting their horrible life choices.” – faroffland
“NTA and for my money, I’d say they were quizzing you about your education and finances and marital status because they are either in or about to be in dire straits money-wise.”
“If they wanted to know all of that they should have stayed in touch and not treated you so horribly. The live in Florida but go to a Walmart in NY for their prescriptions? Riiiight.”
“I’d bet a dollar they were going to try to hit you and your family up for money or lodging or something.” – Kittenwithawhip987
The OP responded to the above with:
“That’s what I was thinking. The only reason they’d have to come up to NY is for my aunt (dads sister), but even then she lives an hour or so from me and the Walmart where I saw them was 5 minutes down the road from my house. So why were they there, you know?”
The OP updated her post to address concerns expressed in the thread.
“My dad was active in the military when he passed. The VA has been paying my sister and I a certain amount every month since his passing. I did not have access to this money until a year ago, when I turned 18.”
“To me it doesn’t seem like a coincidence that they showed up only a little while after I gained access to that money.”
“Since a lot of comments are asking about how we recognized each other, I didn’t ‘recognize’ them necessarily. I heard the pharmacist say my grandfather’s name when I was walking by.”
“As far as them recognizing me? I’m not sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they had been stalking mine or my mothers facebooks to get any type of information possible.”
Overall, Redditors sided with the OP as not the a**hole in the situation.
Many of them agreed the grandparents should have made an effort to stay in the OP and her sister’s lives if they wanted some semblance of a relationship down the line.