From generation to generation, perspectives have a tendency to change.
Unfortunately, sometimes those changes hurt the younger generation.
One man pushed back against this recently on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor AITA_kick_father_co made a harsh decision against his own parents in order to protect his children.
But after resistance from his parents, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he had gone too far.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for kicking my parents out of my house due to mean comments toward my son about his personality?”
The OP lived with his two children after his divorce.
“I (41 [male]) have two kids. ‘Marcus’ (16 [male]) and ‘Maria’ (15 [female]).”
“Marcus is quite quiet, introverted, and likes to do art, and enjoys volunteering at charity events with advertising by creating posters and doing some work.”
Maria has much more active hobbies, such as mixed martial arts, and likes shooting at gun ranges. Maria also has endometriosis and Marcus has taken on almost a motherly role when she is in pain at some times.”
The OP recently invited his parents to stay with them during the pandemic.
“My father (65 [male]) and mother (66 [female]) asked if they could move in with us at the start of the pandemic due to the fact they are higher risk individuals. My father and I had a rough relationship when I was younger because he always believed in hard love, so he doesn’t know much about Marcus and Maria.”
“Some other info; they don’t pay rent or bills, and I divorced [my children’s] mother and got full custody.”
The parents and the OP didn’t always see eye-to-eye about the OP’s kids.
“They would both always comment (to me) about their behaviors and hobbies with comments such as ‘He’s not very manly’ or ‘that’s not very ladylike’ and other such comments.”
“I have expressed my dislike towards them but he has pestered. I allowed him to, as I wouldn’t be able to change his beliefs. It did anger me, but I learned to deal with it.”
“Earlier today I ran into a problem at work and had to stay a bit later, so my parents cooked for Marcus and Maria.”
“When I came home Maria and Marcus were both quite visibly upset, so I asked them what was wrong. They said that they had told Maria to just suck it up while she was in pain and told Marcus that he needed to stop being weak or he would be a useless man when he grew up.”
After their comments, the OP made a harsh decision.
“At this, I saw red and told my parents to get out, they obviously put up a protest, but they left.”
“They called me and left numerous voice mails about how I wouldn’t care if they were to get sick.”
“Now that I have had some time to rethink my actions, I think I’m an a**hole because I should have tried to explain my issues with their comments again instead of doing something like kicking them out in the spur of the moment.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some pointed out the grandparents’ medically inconsistent views.
“Ironic that their reason for moving in was health-related. OP should tell them to suck it up. ‘It’s not very manly to move yourself and your wife in with your kids cause you’re scared of a virus’.” – rubyredgrapefruits
“Tells Maria to just ‘suck it up’ while she is in pain”
“Proceeds to complain that OP won’t take care of them when they are sick” – yoadhv
Others said it was best for the OP to put his children first, even before his own parents.
“OP shutting down and kicking out his parents showed that OP prioritizes his kids and they probably feel safe/comfortable in their own home knowing OP got their back, even if it’s against family.”
“OP, had you let your parents stay it would be indirectly saying you agree with what your parents had said, and your children wouldn’t have felt comfortable afterward.”
“Also, can I just say that OP’s son being understanding and compassionate about something involving menstruation is actually a really great thing? Some (most) of the time men can think it’s gross or like OPs parents say: suck up the period pain.”
“Like assuming he dates a girl in the future, the fact that he is so understanding and compassionate about something like that, and he could be even deemed ‘motherly’ at times, can actually be partner material for a lot of girls/women.” – TheoryAddict
“Absolutely NTA. Your kids are priority one and as a woman with PCOS who has a sister with endometriosis, I would’ve seen red if someone told me or my sister to ‘suck it up’” – ThatInventoryChick
A few pointed out the kids’ positive qualities.
“These kids are awesome: A brother who listens and is probably going to be every girl’s dream guy because the word period or pain doesn’t make them run off screaming, and a sister who has a variety of talents and a great relationship with her brother.”
“I hope I can raise my kids as well as op has where there’s zero ‘forced gender norms’ and such a level of love and support.” – S3xySouthernB
“The son’s actions absolutely made my heart melt in happiness! It’s such an amazing feeling to have someone in your life that makes it even the slightest bit easier, and I have faith that he will grow into such an awesome person!!” – Ikmia
“This is the part that is so infuriating. By all that I have heard, Marcus sounds like a wonderful young man. He should be lauded for being emotionally strong and healthy enough to just simply provide care to his sister.”
“This coming from a 6 ft 200 lb biker that spent far too much of his life trying to prove that he is a tough guy. It’s time for men to wake up. Compassion, kindness, and empathy are not ‘motherly’ and do not make you ‘less of a man.'”
“Oh and NTA.” – RonaldAMcRosebud
The subReddit was firmly against the grandparents’ comments in this situation, even if they wondered if there was some way to reconcile the situation or future issues.
The OP will have to decide whether he wants to open his home to them again while the pandemic continues, or if he’ll want to maintain the new boundary line.