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Guy Called Out After Refusing To Change His Vacation Plans So His Niece And Nephew Can Join

Kalen Emsley/Unsplash

We all know that feeling of making plans and finally getting to do something or go somewhere we’ve been dreaming about for a long time.

Unfortunately, most of us also know the feeling of having someone feel entitled to going through that experience with us.

And it can get complicated quickly in they also have children, admitted the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor ohiosucksforhiking went through a tremendous amount of planning for his upcoming hiking trip, only for his family to suggest taking a few members along.

When they called him selfish for not accommodating them, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was wrong to want to go alone.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for not taking my niece and nephew with me on a trip to Colorado, and refusing to ‘change my plans’ to be able to bring them?”

The OP was a hiking enthusiast.

“I grew up in Colorado and we moved to bumf**k Ohio before I could finish climbing all of the 14,000-foot peaks.”

“I try to make it back every year, or a few times a summer, so I can knock the rest off my list.”

“I have 9 left: Ellingwood, Blanca, Little Bear, Sunlight, Eolus, Windham, Redcloud/Sunshine, and my planned finisher, San Luis.”

“The first 6 of these listed peaks are difficult climbs. The first 3 require a long backpacking trip in, and the 4th and 5th do, as well (and a train that may or may not run).

“Little Bear is considered one of the most difficult and dangerous, requiring ropes and helmets for most climbers.”

The OP’s brother surprisingly stepped all over his plans.

“My brother heard that I’m planning a trip to Colorado, and he wants me to take his kids with me.”

“I said no, flat out.”

“I explained which mountains I’d planned and he SHOULD have gotten the hint, but he told me that I should just switch the order I do them in and bring the kids with me on San Luis.”

“I’ve planned a moonlight hike for San Luis forever. I want it to be just me and the sky.”

“My brother has been saying that I don’t spend enough time with the kids, that I make plans without considering anyone else’s feelings or wants, and that I am ‘stuck in adolescence and refuse to root in reality.'”

“The issue I guess is that he can’t give the kids a full vacation this year because he’s stuck at work, as is his wife. They don’t have another option, and are begging me to take the kids.”

But the OP didn’t see how he would accommodate the children.

“Here’s the thing, I’m a 26-year-old guy. I love my niece and nephew, but I have no interest whatsoever in changing my plans to bring kids with me on a trip.”

“I plan to hike, drink beer at all the new breweries, go to some baseball games with friends I haven’t seen in years, probably hook up with fit people because the options in Ohio are depressing as f**k, etc.”

“I don’t want to cut those plans to do a bunch of kid-friendly s**t.”

The family made their feelings known. 

“They expect me to just give up my trip and take the kids on the hiking equivalent of the bunny slopes.”

“And I’m getting so much s**t from all my family about it, including my mom who said she agrees with my brother and that it’s time to ‘settle down.'”

“He also complained that the kids complain that they don’t see me enough, which is crazy. I’m over at their house every few weeks.”

“I haven’t told anyone yet, but while I’m back in Colorado, I’m going to look for a place to live comfortably.”

“I don’t want to live in bumf**k Cincinnati Ohio for the rest of my life. This is a different issue, I guess.”

“AITA for not taking my niece and nephew out to Colorado with me because their parents can’t do it?”

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 could not believe the family’s entitlement.

“NTA. I like how ‘settling down’ apparently means ‘take care of someone else’s responsibilities.'”

“I’m sure your niece and nephew say they wish they saw you more often. You are probably more fun than their own parents. That doesn’t mean you have to take them on vacation or do anything else their parents are responsible for.”

“Go live your life.” – WhoFearsDeath

“It sounds to me like the brother is jealous of the childfree and burden-free life OP is enjoying.”

“In other words: stop doing fun things by yourself because if I can’t then nobody should be able to.”

“NTA obviously, go enjoy life.” – berdiekin

“If I heard my kids with children were guilting my kids without children, I’d be on their asses. My child-free kids chose that so they aren’t tied down!”

“It would take a lot of nerve, and a massive ego, for a tied-down adult to insist childfree adults care for their children. Like at all. Ever.”

“OP: NTA. I’m glad you’re pursuing moving back home. The parent needs to readjust their schedules, to accommodate their own children. Your brother sounds exhausting.” – beenthere7613

“I’m childfree. My sister has kids. I LOVE hanging out with my nephews. They’re awesome! We do fun stuff every time I visit them, especially now that they’re teenagers.”

“I love being the ‘cool aunt.’ But I don’t want kids full-time.”

“My sister would never even think of asking me to give up my adult vacations to take her kids. We both respect each other’s life choices.” – SnooPandas9346

“Am I jealous of what child-free people can do for themselves? A little?”

“Do I ring my relatives and demand they take on my responsibility? No. Absolutely not.”

“Not every parent is running around clouded by the weight of pure entitlement. If we can’t afford holidays, we don’t go on holidays, period.” – marahute85

Others questioned putting the kids in danger.

“My siblings and I, despite being close have NEVER taken each other kids on vacation; why would we? That seems like nuclear family time.”

“If you wanna do a special trip, sure but you can’t foist your kids on other people’s vacations!!!”

“I have kids and I wouldn’t want the responsibility of someone else’s for that length of time, let alone on a hiking or camping trip.”

“This is all about the brother feeling jealous and wanting to not have his kids for a while which is not OP’s problem at all.” – Dark_fascination

“NTA, and why on earth would you take anyone’s kids MOUNTAIN CLIMBING with you?”

“You don’t say how old the kids are, but based on your age, I am going to assume they are far too young to go MOUNTAIN CLIMBING.”

“Also, what kind of unreasonable a**hole expects a 26-year-old uncle to take a couple of little kids for a couple of weeks, out of state, anyway? This is ridiculous. Go climb things and have fun.”

“I know the brother expects OP to change his MOUNTAIN CLIMBING vacation to something more kid-friendly, but I choose to ignore that, since the whole point of the trip is the MOUNTAIN CLIMBING. Clearly, whatever else happens, mountains are gonna be climbed.” – BarracudeGullible

“Absolutely NTA. I grew up in CO and lived there most of my adult life. I have climbed some of the ‘easier’ 14ers. Meaning I parked in a lot, brought water and granola bars, and was up and down in 4 – 6 hours.”

“If these kids aren’t already in good shape, there’s no way they can come up from near-sea level (basically) and hike a 14er. It would, quite frankly, be dangerous to take them.”

“Best of luck finding a good housing situation in CO! It’s getting challenging and expensive in some areas (which is part of the reason we left), but it’s a great state!” – claudia_grace

“Just moved from Atlanta to Utah. Not in great shape, but not bad shape either. Tried hiking.”

“Thought I was going to die. And that was just on a 5-6k high peak because my body has issues with blood oxygen levels and blood chemistry ANYWAY and that extra 3k feet from my ‘normal’ was too much. So now I’m training on smaller elevation changes so I can hike the taller, cooler peaks.”

“No way kids, however fit, could safely go from Ohio to 14k+ elevation without preparing.” – BabyCowGT

“Definitely NTA. I’m 17 and am somewhat physically fit and I love backpacking and hiking.”

“This past summer, I went to Philmont if you know where that is, but anyways it was 30 ish miles over the course of 7 days, and we climbed multiple peaks one of which is right under 10,000 feet in elevation, and they kicked my a**.”

“With the way you are explaining these climbs, there is no way a 16 and 13-year-old kid could do that especially if they aren’t physically fit in any way.” – thatuglyhatnexttome

Some also agreed with creating distance between the OP and his family.

“It’s wild that this is so common, my sister has the kids and I do not and never will and it works so well for us.”

“I get to be the fun aunt, I get to take the kids for a couple of days and have a blast, I get to have fun little niblings and watch them grow and all the good parts of having kids in the family with little to none of the drawbacks.”

“My sister gets free trusted childcare at short notice, extra love and support for her kids, reinforcement of morals and rules, downtime from being a mom, and just the knowledge that someone else has their kids’ interests at heart because they love them, not because they’re responsible for them.”

“It even means that, like last weekend, my sister got to go out and have fun on a short notice mini-vacation because I was able to take the toddler for the night and day after.”

“OP’s family sucks, and he should definitely move away.” – windexfresh

“NTA, and get yourself back to Colorado permanently. Once you’re well settled in, you can bring your niece and nephew out once a summer if you like, sans your bulls**t brother.” – ksharonisok

“NTA.”

“You don’t spend enough time with someone else’s kids?”

“He’s gaslighting you. He’s mad he settled down before you and is EXTREMELY jealous that you have the freedom to do things like this.”

“Your mother is agreeing with him because she’s playing ‘who had grandkids first’ favorites.”

“What he means by ‘you don’t consider anyone else’s feelings’ is ‘you should babysit for me and take my kids so I can have fun more and less responsibility.'”

“You didn’t have kids. None of this is your issue.”

“You settle down whenever the h**l you want. Not because you living your life inspires jealousy and envy in your family and they can’t handle it.” – Beneficial_Rain_9188

“The Mom and Dad want some free time so they are guilting the uncle. What I don’t get is why everyone else is trying to force this on him as well.”

“Sounds like OP’s mom wants some more grandbabies and she is trying to rally the troops to force OP into settling down against his wishes.”

“I hope OP does get his Colorado move going.” – tphatmcgee

“These are not your children. They are not your responsibility. You do not owe your brother or mother anything.”

“You need this trip to spend time with friends, going hiking on your own, and do adult stuff.”

“Live your life for you. Hopefully, you find a place and move very soon. Keep it quiet so they don’t try to guilt/manipulate you into staying.”

“NTA.” – Careless-Image-885

While the OP felt conflicted because of the criticisms he was hearing from his family, the subReddit insisted he had nothing to worry about. He was not required to provide free babysitting or take care of his minor-age niece and nephew just to get them out of the house. It may have been too dangerous to do anyway.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives in North Chicago, where she works as a poet, freelance writer, and editor. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, and her BA in English from Indiana University South Bend. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Thank You for Swallowing, and elsewhere; and her essays and book reviews have appeared with Memoir Mixtapes, The Rumpus, BookPage, and Motherly, among others. When she's not reading and writing, she's in her garden or spending time with her family. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com.