Some people found themselves in a position where they had to care for someone else. Sometimes, they received this responsibility at a younger age than they should have.
But if they receive an opportunity to do something that’s better for them, they may be criticized for considering it, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
That was exactly what happened for Redditor More_Common_9301, who received a job opportunity out-of-state.
When he was called selfish by his parents, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was wrong to stop putting his family first.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for choosing a new job over taking care of my brother?”
The OP took care of his brother before going to college.
“I (25 Male) grew up in a very tense and stressful environment. My parents were very old-fashioned and still are.”
“My younger brother (18 Male) is nonverbal. He’s such a sweet person and I only want the best for him.”
“I raised my brother until I went off to college. My parents did the bare minimum such as buying clothes and cooking.”
He unexpectedly continued to care for him after that.
“I moved out at 19 to attend college and moved in a cheap apartment. My parents decided that taking care of my brother was too much for them and moved him into the apartment without telling me.”
“I did my best to make it work while in college, but my brother did not like being in a new environment.”
“After I graduated, I landed a job as a dispatcher for a government agency. One of my friends helped with taking care of my brother while I worked.”
When the OP received a job offer, he had mixed feelings.
“I got an offer recently that pays twice my salary in another state. I live in a colder environment, and the location is down south.”
“I did accept the position and found a better apartment.”
“I know it would be too much for my brother to move to a new environment and I told him about the move. He was not thrilled with the news.”
“I told my parents about the new job and location and that it would be best for my brother to move in with them.”
“They were not happy with the news and started accusing me of being a horrible brother.”
“I told them that it was my decision and they did not have a say.”
“AITA for choosing a new job over taking care of my brother?”
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 said the OP was not wrong to advance his career.
“NTA. Your parents are TA. You are not your brother’s parents – they are. Moving multiple states away sounds like a very healthy decision for you.” – TheGalaxyEater
“You are NOT a horrible brother – as much as you love your brother, you are entitled to your own life.”
“Your parents should’ve been the ones taking care of him and doing the most, since he’s their son. I hope your new job goes well, and best wishes to you and your brother.” – Sunkiss_speckledfrog
“I feel really bad for both OP and his brother who probably sees him as his hero. OP clearly loves his brother and wants what’s best for him, but the thing to keep in mind is that one day OP’s parents will die and his brother will rely on him more than ever.”
“OP, this is how you need to view things. As of right now, you need to advance your position in life to be able to competently care for yourself, your future family, and your brother down the line. You can’t do that if you give up opportunities for advancement to care for him while your parents are still around to do so/fund a caretaker.”
“I know you love your brother deeply and it’s going to sting to be away from him during the transition period, but advancing your position in life will be so much more important for maintaining a happy quality of life for everyone down the line.”
“You’re not abandoning him, you’re building a future that very well may be your brother’s safety net one day.”
“My wife suffered parentification, but in her case, her younger sister told her she should move to be with me ‘because I think LawBird’s the only guy who wouldn’t eventually leave.’ Her younger sister had a rough transition, but now she’s doing better than she ever has and we’re so proud of her.”
“At the same time, my wife and I were able to create a base level of stability that would allow her sister to come live with us when she turns 18 if she wished.”
“Taking time to build life stability away from familial responsibility isn’t a bad thing, it’s necessary to maintain a decent standard of living. You’re not abandoning family, you’re preparing for your family’s future.” – LawBird33101
Others agreed and insisted he was not a horrible brother.
“You are a brother and not a parent! You shouldn’t have been in this position anyway. You deserve a life. Don’t let anyone even for a second tell you otherwise.” – amarschderwelt
“NTA. I feel for you and your brother. Your parents shouldn’t have had kids if this is how they’ve treated you both. They need to start stepping up. Hope it all works out well for your brother and you.” – Icy_Conversation_612
“No – NTA. You’ve done so much for your brother – it’s time to do something for yourself. Your parents need to actually parent their child.” – AppalachianEnvy
“Am I getting this correctly? When you were 19yo your parents quite literally dumped your 12yo nonverbal brother with you? While you attended college and worked afterward?”
“In no known universe are you the a**hole.”
“They couldn’t cope with the responsibility of a child with special needs and guilted you into taking care of him or else you wouldn’t be a ‘good brother.'”
“I am sure that you are a great brother and possibly the best parent that your brother has in his life. However, you also have your life to live and he should not be your responsibility just because your parents don’t want him to be theirs.”
“NTA” – Sarcasm-is-life-212
Some also gave advice about what the brother could do now instead.
“Bro is probably eligible for Medicare. Depending on his type of disability he might be eligible for certain types of job training, or activities that will enrich his life.”
“If his OP got hit by a truck, what would happen to bro?”
“OP, can you talk to your brother’s former school? A doctor? Your brother is eligible for help.”
“If you are totally clueless about how to start, call your representative in Congress, who might know who can guide you through evaluating options for your brother. Reps have offices and employees that help people with stuff like this.”
“Lots of stuff depends on what state you live in. If you are planning on moving from one state to another, see what benefits bro is eligible for in each state and what resources are available and help figure out where your brother would be happiest.”
“If change is very hard for him, getting him into a stable situation where he has independence while he is not under any other stress would be better. Also, if you get him into a group home and he hates it, you want to be able to work out what he might actually like and help settle him in.”
“Both of you are growing up. And becoming more independent is part of that… For both of you.”
“Best of luck, OP. Also, you are NTA.” – jenny_the_pirate
“Your brother needs to be in a supported living facility. They will take better care of him than your lousy parents. He is not your responsibility.” – lockmama
“Caregiver burnout is real but parentification and ‘dumping’ your child on anyone isn’t cool. A group home will allow all of you to have a better relationship with your brother and you know your brother will be in capable hands.” – SunshineSeriesB
“But now that he is legally an adult, you might want to do some research on his behalf in case things go south with your parents.”
“Get answers to questions like, who is legally and financially responsible for him now that he is an adult? Who can check in on him and make sure his needs are met? What types of assistance programs might he qualify for now that you won’t be available?”
“My question: He is nonverbal, but what is his educational level? Does he have an HS diploma? Has he been involved in any work support programs? Can he be enrolled in a technical training program? And so on…” – Educational_Food9471
While the subReddit appreciated all that the OP had already done for his younger brother, they also could understand that it was time for the OP to pursue career opportunities that better met his needs.
Whether or not he would eventually bring his brother back into his home or pursue other options for him, the sub agreed that the OP needed to do what was best for himself now.