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Dad Balks After Newly-Single Ex Begs For Food Money For Kids, But Won’t Accept Groceries

Woman looking into empty fridge.
Rockaa/Getty Images

It goes without saying, that going through a divorce is an extremely difficult thing to do.

Particularly when there are children involved.

Most of the time, however, when parents get divorced, they always make a point of putting their differences aside, and putting their children first.

Working together, while living apart, to make sure their children are being properly taken care of.

After getting divorced, Redditor Ambitious-Emotion615 initially paid his ex-wife spousal support to make sure their two children were taken care of.

When the original poster (OP)’s ex-wife remarried, however, the spousal support payments stopped.

Unfortunately, the OP’s ex eventually found herself divorced again, but when she asked the OP for money, he declined her request.

Putting a further strain on their relationship.

Wondering if he made the wrong decision, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA because I won’t buy food for my ex and our kids?”

The OP explained why he wasn’t willing to lend his ex-wife money:

“My ex and I divorced when our kids were young.”

“The kids are 12 and 15 now.”

“We have been divorced for seven years now.”

“We have 50/50 custody and she remarried so spousal support is done.”

“Her new husband recently left her.”

“I don’t know, and am not interested, in the particulars.”

“In my opinion he didn’t seem like a terrible guy and he left her their house, once again I have no idea of debt load or anything like that.”

“She called me last week to see if I could please help her out with some food.”

“She said that she had run through her budget for food for her and the kids and basically begged me to help her out.”

‘I asked her to give me a few minutes and I would call her back.”

“I talked to my girlfriend, who lives with me, and we agreed that we could spare some food.”

‘We have a freezer full of elk, venison, and wild hog, as well as a well stocked pantry.”

“We also have beef, pork, and chicken.”

“I called my ex back and told her to come by and pick up a big load of groceries.”

“This is where it got weird.”

“She said she didn’t want groceries.”

“She wanted me to give her money for Uber eats or something.”

“I said no.”

“I have two weeks worth of food that you can have.”

‘But I’m not giving you money for takeout.”

“She called me an a-hole for expecting her to be grateful for my scraps.”

“That I was expecting her to be all domestic.”

“Everything I was going to give her was either frozen meat, canned veggies, fresh vegetables from the garden, and pasta/rice in unopened bags.”

“I want my kids to eat well.”

“Both of my kids hunt and my son, the older one, is a pretty good cook.”

“He regularly makes meals for all of us at my house.”

‘Both kids eat game meat as well as store-bought.”

“I honestly thought I was doing what she asked.”

“I told my girlfriend not to bother packing anything up.”

“I texted both kids and told them to let me know if they were actually going hungry, and I would take care of everything.”

“Both kids texted back and said there was food in the house it just needed to be prepared.”

“Both of them also said that if I was willing to spare some of the elk and hog roasts, they would take them.”

“I laughed and said I would take them over later.”

“My ex, however, is telling everyone that I am trying to manipulate her into behaving like a housewife and refusing to buy food for my kids.”

“Some people are taking her side and saying that I’m a d*ck for not helping her out.”

“100% balls out honesty.”

“I don’t think I’m in the wrong.”

“But maybe I’m missing something.”


Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to give his wife money for food.

Everyone agreed that the OP was clearly looking out for his children and agreed that his ex-wife’s motives were more than a little suspect after he generously offered her a sizable portion of groceries.


“And you’re being very generous.”

“It’s good that you followed up with the kids to make sure they’re being taken care of while they’re there.”

“As for the people badmouthing you, you don’t owe your ex-wife anything.”

“You are divorced.”

“She is literally not your problem.”

“Anyone who reaches out to you about it, I’d tell them, ‘I offered to give her free groceries so that she and my children would have food, and she said no because she already has groceries and wants to order Uber Eats instead, and wants me to pay for it. Please feel free to donate money to her lifestyle if you want to, but I no longer need to’.”- DisneyBuckeye


“She, on the other hand, is definitely the a**hole.”

“Such bullsh*t.”

“She’s too damn lazy to cook, is all.”

“And maybe there’s a dose of taking out her husband, leaving her on you.”- He_Who_Is_Person

“Definitely NTA.”

“There’s no reason to be giving her money.”

“She asked for help with food, and you were readily willing to give her some of your food!”

“But she doesn’t want/need help with food.”

“She wants/needs money.”

“With 50/50 custody, you shouldn’t have to give her any money.”

“If she absolutely needs it, she will have to apply for government benefits.”

“She’s being ridiculous.”- EveningAd6728

“NTA, if she’s broke, she has no business ordering Uber eats and SHOULD be grateful for your ‘scraps’.”

“I suggest you start recording your interactions with your ex, it might come in handy eventually.”-ZacTheBlob

“Am I the only one who has the sneaking suspicion the ex isn’t just planning on using that money for food?”

‘Because it seems like your kids aren’t as distressed as your ex makes them out to be, and that there is actually some food in the house.”- loudchewingsounds1


“She doesn’t wanna cook, that’s fine, and I get it.”

“But to be so lazy you would rather spend an extra $30 for the delivery, the tip, the random extra expenses that food delivery apps tack on, instead of just going to the place yourself to pick up the meals is idiotic when you’re expecting it on someone else’s dime.”

“At that point, call papa johns and order a couple pizzas, and it’s way cheaper.”

“I wanna mention, just in case anyone has a problem with me saying she’s too lazy to at least grab the food herself.”

“I have a painful disability and can’t drive, and uber eats/ grub hub etc has been a lifesaver for me at times. But it’s my money; I’m not asking my exes for a delivery.”- angrey3737


“Talk about choosy beggars.”

‘You aren’t manipulating her into ‘behaving like a housewife’. You are just expecting her to do some of the most basic adult activities that she needs to keep herself alive.”

“You then made sure that your kids do have the food that they need. Its sad that the preteen and teenager have more life skills than your ex.”- Icy-Association-8711

“This is a wild response from your ex — you are NTA here.”

“If people are taking her side, don’t take it too hard.”

“They heard the drama from her, and I’m sure she didn’t present the situation in a fair light.”

“If you’re close with them, ideally, you’ll have a chance to set the record straight, and if they refuse to see the insanity of refusing high-quality, excellent food because you will have to prepare it, then you can safely distance those people from your life.”

“Being able to make food is required of parents.”- Low_Print4575


“If anyone confronts you, tell them your ex wants money for takeout!”

“She doesn’t want food, which you offered and which your sons are happy to take.”

“Talk to your boys and see if it’s time for a change in the custody agreement.”

“Good Luck.”- QuinGood


“You used the same approach I use with panhandlers.”

“I will buy food for them and give them the food, but I will not give them money.”

“And it’s quite disappointing how few people will let me buy them a sandwich or a meal when they want money.”- ramblingamblinamblin


“You’re good.”

“Wife sounds awful with money and maybe a little manic.”

“Kids sound like they’re dealing with it decently.”

“No one is forcing her to do domestic duties except her economic situation.”

“That’s not on you.”

“Now I’m craving venison in a city center while on a 30% off-ground beef budget.”

“So to me personally, you’re a bit of an a**hole.”- MothmanNFT

When the OP heard that his ex-wife might not have food to feed their children, he immediately arranged to deliver groceries.

Something the OP didn’t even say thank you for.

It’s hard not to agree with those who wonder if the OP’s ex wanted money not for groceries but for other purposes.

Making one only further wonder if she is, in fact, putting her children first.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.