While it’s nice to imagine that a family will live happily ever after when they come together as the result of a marriage, sometimes that isn’t what happens.
And children are ultimately the ones who will suffer, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor Throwra324546 had been looking forward to a trip with their new wife after their honeymoon had been put on hold.
But when they heard their son was not being properly fed by his step-grandparents, the Original Poster (OP) decided to cut the trip short.
They asked the sub:
“AITA for cutting the trip with my wife short after I learned that my son’s step-grandparents weren’t feeding him properly?”
The OP was hesitant about leaving their son while going on their honeymoon.
“My wife and I got married months ago. We didn’t get a chance to go on a honeymoon, but then I planned a trip for us as a couple.”
“I originally was planning on leaving my nine-year-old son with his regular babysitter. However, my wife insisted that we leave him with her parents.”
“I agreed but was hesitant because my son has dietary restrictions due to medical problems, and my in-laws commented on his eating habits as being ‘spoiled.'”
It turned out the OP was right to worry.
“I sent him there and gave them a list of what food he should be fed.”
“On the fourth day of the trip, he video-called me and told me he’d been eating only snacks and hadn’t eaten a warm meal in days.”
“I was puzzled. I asked if his grandparents didn’t cook any of his regular meals on the list.”
“He said no. They just gave him snacks.”
The OP knew they had to do something.
“I was absolutely livid, especially after I contacted my Mother-in-Law (MIL) and she told me she wasn’t a ‘personal cook,’ and that it wasn’t her fault I spoil my son.”
“I cut the trip short and went home immediately.”
“My wife was upset, saying instead of cutting the long-awaited trip short, I should’ve let the babysitter take care of feeding him.”
“We had a fight, and she told me that her parents owed me nothing, and that I always ruin things for us. Now she says I ruined the trip she paid for.”
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 pointed out the wife was showing her true feelings for her stepson.
“NTA, you have made a serious mistake marrying this woman, and it’s your son who is going to suffer for it in the end.” – UrReplyIsDumb
“She has no compassion for your son, and she doesn’t fall far from the AH tree. Get out now. She’s horrid. Her family will mistreat your kid every time she can.” – FeeOverall1497
“They only just got married, and she’s already making it clear how little she cares about this man’s son.”
“…And if her parents weren’t concerned enough to even feed the poor kid proper meals, and she’s defending their atrocious behavior, why on earth did she even want him to stay with them instead of the babysitter, to begin with?”
“NTA. I’d start reaching out to divorce lawyers if I were you.” – Alarmed_Jellyfish555
“The OP made a mistake and a dangerous mistake at that.”
“She insisted that the kid stays with her neglectful parents, defended their neglect when it came to light, advocated for dumping the kid on a babysitter on short notice instead of checking on him, and then berated OP for prioritizing his son over a leisure trip.”
“She’s making it quite clear she just wants his kid out of the way (out of sight, out of mind) to start her new life with OP. I just hope he sees through it before she does irreparable harm.” – sci_fi_bi
“The fact that she, a step-parent, shows zero concern for the medical needs of OP’s son doesn’t give me hope that she’d give a damn about her own kids’ medical needs in the future.”
“OP, reevaluate this marriage because it will end in you having to make the choice. It is better to make it now before there is permanent damage to your son.” – MrGameRat
“It’s not just that he ruined the trip, it’s that he ‘always’ ruins things for them. I get that she was upset, and may have spoken out of frustration, but the rest of the story doesn’t earn her any benefit of the doubt.”
“Why does she want to be married to someone who she claims always ruins things? But more importantly, why would OP want to stay married to someone who says things like that, on top of every other red flag in this situation.” – ViscountBurrito
Others were appalled by the wife’s whole family.
“OP’s original reaction was that he had more faith in a babysitter than his adoptive family members. That alone should’ve been a red flag.” – Difficult_Plastic852
“It will also only get worse if they have a child together because then OP will get no say about who watches the kid and what they feed him.”
“Imagine step-grandma saying she isn’t a ‘personal cook’ for a nine-year-old. That’s pretty abusive.”
“OP, assuming your son doesn’t have his mother in his life, do you want to leave him at the mercy of your wife and her parents?” – Consistent_Rent_3507
“I have a terrible feeling the wife and/or her parents wanted to do it to prove a point, that he would be okay with any food, since they don’t seem to respect his food restrictions.”
“Kind of like the grandparents who don’t believe in food allergies and want to make a point by sneaking in unsafe ingredients.” – oceansapart333
“Giving inappropriate food or withholding specific food can be considered abuse.”
“I put my daughter with special needs and Celiac disease in a respite care house when I had to go out of town on a family emergency.”
“I got home a day early and got a call from the home. A staff member had given my daughter a plateful of pizza rolls. They found her in the bathroom and they could not rouse her. Called EMTs.”
“I got the call and luckily I was five minutes away, not 200 miles.”
“She ended up in ER for a couple of days. DO NOT mess with dietary needs. The fact that the wife blew it off was ice cold. OP needs to protect his son from stepmom et al.” – Tassy820
“How is not making his child sick ‘owing him something’? How is not feeding the child proper meals instead of snacks somehow transactional? They don’t ‘owe him anything,’ so they can starve and mistreat his child? CPS (Child Protective Services), and an annulment or divorce.” – UnicornFaeries
“Your son’s health is the priority here. She doesn’t realize it, and neither do her parents.”
“They could have seriously affected his health. If they didn’t want to take proper care of him, then they should have been upfront about that.”
“I commend you for your actions and I hope your son is well.” – vomitthewords
“If you don’t get divorced, remember you can NEVER leave your son with your wife or her parents. They don’t believe in his medical condition and aren’t good people.”
“Your son is Cinderella to them. NTA for now, OP.” – Dlraetz11
“NTA! I don’t want to be alarmist, but this is not a good sign for your marriage. Your wife INSISTS you leave your son with her parents instead of his regular caregiver. Her parents REFUSED to follow your son’s dietary plan. You hurry home to care for your son, and she fights, claiming YOU ruined the trip.”
“You are SO FAR from being TA. But your wife? Her family? None of them give a d**n about your son. It’s not going to get better…”
“You and your son deserve better.” – MbMinx
“The OP’s wife’s parents said they would feed him properly and on that basis, OP agreed to leave his son with them. Their wife’s parents absolutely owe him and the child proper hot meals, not just whatever snack food they have lying around.”
“If the wife’s parents want to take the position they don’t owe OP anything, the time to make that assertion is before they agree to take OP’s son.”
“The wife’s parents don’t get to agree to take OP’s son with full awareness of his needs, renege on the promise to feed him appropriately, and then turn around when confronted and say, ‘we don’t owe you anything!'” – quebee
The subReddit was appalled that the OP’s son had been put in harm’s way because the OP’s in-laws likely wanted to prove a point about the son being “spoiled” or his dietary needs being “not real.”
The OP was also urged by their fellow Redditors to seek out an annulment or divorce to get their son away from the stepmom and step-grandparents as soon as possible. Whatever their reasoning, they clearly did not have the OP’s son’s health and safety at heart.