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Mom Calls Daughter ‘Terrible Mother’ For Secretly Reading Grandson’s Grief Diary About Late Dad

A close-up view of a man writing on a notepad

Figuring out how to manage grief is a lifelong process.

There is no one way to do it.

Hopefully, over time people learn to live a productive life with it.

There are so many ways to navigate the process.

People in grief thrive with support.

But not everybody can get on board with how others heal.

Case in point…

Redditor TreatFamiliar2448 wanted to discuss her experience and get some feedback. So naturally, she came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

She asked:

“AITA for calling my daughter a terrible mother?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“My oldest daughter and I had a disagreement recently.”

“I was very disappointed in her and expressed this to her as well as my opinion that she is a terrible mother.”

“She believes I am wrong to judge her so I want some perspective.”

“My daughter was married twice.”

“Her first husband died when their children were 9, 5 and 4.”

“She met her second husband 18 months later and remarried after a year of dating and created a blended family with his daughter, who was four at the point of their marriage.”

“My oldest grandson was destroyed by his dad’s death.”

“He was in therapy from the point of his dad’s death, something my husband and I had to pressure our daughter to seek because she was focused more on moving forward.”

“But our grandson was hardly eating or sleeping and had difficulty in school.”

“My daughter thanked me later for giving her the push.”

“When my grandson started therapy, he was asked to keep a diary to help him.”

“It was something that took him several months to use more than once a month, but he did grow to use it a lot.”

‘This diary was something for his eyes only.”

“Not even the therapist read it.”

“They just discussed anything he wished to.”

“My daughter had more children with her second husband, and things were fine.”

“When my grandson decided he wanted to attend college locally, he asked if he could live with my husband and myself, and we agreed.”

“He moved in with us in mid-June.”

“About a month later, I noticed something was going on, but I had no idea what.”

“My other two grandchildren from my daughter’s first marriage told me that their mom and brother were fighting because their mom had stolen his therapy diary while they were visiting us and that she was angry about its contents.”

“She was also mad at them because they defended their brother.”

“I spoke to my grandson, who was both angry and sad.”

“He told me his mom was never supposed to read those.”

‘I spoke to my daughter next.”

“She ranted at me about how my grandson had written about her husband and other children, including her stepdaughter.”

“She said he never wanted her to move on.”

“That he had wanted her to be alone forever.”

“That he didn’t even love his much younger siblings, just the two from her marriage to his dad.”

“She said she couldn’t look at him.”

“I asked her if it was true she stole the diary.”

“She was stunned I would ask and told me I should be focused more on the contents, especially when some of it was written right before he moved in with me.”

“I told her it was kept in a diary and never vocalized to any of them.”

“She said that didn’t matter, and I said it did.”

“She told me I should be on her side.”

“That he should be shunned for writing so many awful things.”

“This is when I expressed my disappointment in her and called her a terrible mother.”


Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.

“NTA and thank you for being a wonderful grandparent and supporting your grandson in this matter.”

“A diary like that is meant to vent those dark thoughts that we sometimes have and often hate ourselves for so that they don’t come out and damage our relationships with our friends and family.”

“Your daughter was wrong to even think about looking at them and doubly wrong for think it’s at all ok to react to them.”

“She’s being a terrible mom by invading her son’s privacy and ruining a much-needed therapy tool.” ~ thaliagorgon

“NTA. If my family read what was in my diary, they’d be upset, too, even though I love them with everything I have.”

“My diary is there for me to put all my grievances and frustration out while I’m feeling them.”

“Angry me feels differently than calm me.”

“Just like when parents are frustrated at their children, they may write they wish they could go back in time because raising kids is too hard – do they mean it?”

“In the moment, sure. Would they do it?”

“High chance they’d rather lay down their lives for their babies than have them gone.”

“Your grandson has trauma. It’s amazing he’s in therapy, but his feelings, even after time has passed, are still valid.”

“I’m guessing there were a couple of things behind closed doors that made him feel how he does, or maybe he just couldn’t form a bond with the others. Either way, he’s entitled to that.”

“I have two half brothers – I’d go through hell and back for only one of them.”

“Your daughter is cruel for not only reading it, but sharing it, and continuing to share it AND keep it.”

“Everything he wrote in there is no longer his alone.”

“This has the potential to ruin trust – not just between him and his mother, but between him and everyone he ever encounters.”

“His coping mechanism has been tainted.”

“It may seem like a minor thing (reading a diary) to your daughter, but it is such a disgusting violation of a person’s deepest thoughts and feelings.”

“But she doesn’t care.”

“Get his journal back, or get him a new one and a little safe if it’ll make him feel comfortable.”

“Don’t push a makeup. Let your grandson dictate that.”

“You’re in his corner, so at least he has one person there for him.”

“If it’s bad enough he goes No Contract with that side, you will probably be his exception.” ~ ReasonableSpud

“The worst thing your daughter did, was tell this information to her new kids and husband.”

“They’d have never thought this if she didn’t.”

“She made it so much worse, and she made the contents actually matter when they didn’t have to.”

“She should not have stolen and read his diary.”

“But since she did, her next step should have been to talk to her oldest privately.”

“And what should she have said?”


“She should have told her son she never meant to hurt him and that she is so so sorry for not seeing that her children needed more time and that she’s sorry for putting her desires above her children’s need to grieve.”

“She should be crying at his feet for making him suffer in silence and never picking up the signs.”

“Instead – she’s alienating him from the family and trying to force you to alienate him too.”

“She is RADIATING bad mother energy.”

“I’m so happy your other grandchildren are defending him.”

“And God his half siblings must be going through it right now too, feeling like their existence is the problem because your daughter insisted everyone know, bad stepmom energy too.”

“You should send this post to your daughter so she can read the comments in shame for knowing that everybody thinks she’s in the wrong here.”

“NTA, your grandson is lucky to have you.” ~ SpecialK623

“NTA – your daughter is though.”

“She stole her son’s diary and then read through his private thoughts.”

“And now she wants the entire family to shun him because she couldn’t force him to drink the Kool-aid of her ‘perfect blended family!!!’ Pathetic.”

“OP Comment from below: ‘She’s also holding onto all of this.'”

“‘I hear from two of my grandchildren that she continues to blame her brother and has openly discussed what he wrote.'”

‘”Which means she hurt her stepdaughter and her younger children with her actions too.'”

“This is telling the younger kids the private thoughts of their Half/Stepbrother and creating a Grand Canyon divide between the three older sibs and the younger sibs.”

“OP, Your daughter needs to see this post [and your grandson to see how much support he has besides you].” ~ Comfortable-Sea-2454

OP came back with an update…

“And the worst part is he never treated any of the children poorly or even that differently.”

“Subtle, very minor differences, yes.”

“But he did his best to still be kind to all the children.”

“So his diary was his way of keeping others from being hurt.”

“My daughter’s actions have left me incredibly upset.”

“I would like to think we taught her better than this.”

Reddit continued…

“I’m furious on your grandson’s behalf.”

“Those were his private thoughts.”

“She had no right.”

“You’re NTA, and I hope you’re able to continue to support him and your other grandchildren (specifically the older ones) because you’re doing an amazing job so far!” ~ Kelseylin5

“NTA. My mom read my diary once when I was a kid.”

“She didn’t like the contents either.”

“I’m now 33 and have never written down my thoughts since that day and struggle with trust issues, boundaries, and privacy.”

“I also have no contact with my mother.”

“Tell your daughter this is what her future looks like.” ~ Murrmaider822

“At least they have you and your husband who will be there for them.”

“I can’t say what I think about your daughter because I’ll get banned!!! “

“You are amazing for standing up for your grandson.”

“NTA but your daughter is a real piece of work!” ~ mother-of-dragons13

“She moved on and never dealt with her grieving son.”

“Of course, he has anger that has built up needing release… the diary helped it.”

“Mom is a crappy mom.”

“Awesome he’ll be with you while in college. NTA.” ~ lmmontes

“NTA, for telling the truth.”

“Jesus Ch**st, she’s horrible for what she did!” ~ jabronimax969

“NTA. What a horrid mother, just plain nasty.”

“Congratulate her, though, she has single-handedly caused her child to hate her, and I wouldn’t blame him.”

“I doubt he will be sticking around her after graduation.” ~ Smiles-Bite

Well, OP, Reddit is definitely on your side.

And your grandson’s.

This is a sad situation. Unfortunately, it probably won’t be an easy fix.

Hopefully, one day, when the feelings of betrayal are less raw, you can all sit down and discuss this.

Good luck.