Let’s face it: sometimes relationships end, and when they do, the aftermath can be hurtful and ugly.
But sometimes we have to move past what we’re feeling and be the bigger person, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
When Redditor ThrowawayPaige67 found out her ex-husband had passed away, she refused because of the pain she feared she’d feel at seeing her ex-in-laws again.
But when she was called out for her decision, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she was wrong to decline going.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for refusing to go with my 16-year-old daughter to her father’s funeral?”
The OP did not want to attend her ex-husband’s funeral.
“My ex-husband (my daughter’s father) passed away 2 days ago at the age of 36.”
“My 16-year-old daughter begged that I go with her to the funeral because she said she doesn’t know anyone there and needs my support and guidance.”
“I refused because I did not feel comfortable and then seeing my former in-laws… it’s just not worth the pain.”
“For those who are suspecting that there’s a girlfriend there that I don’t want to see – No, nothing like that. My ex-husband never dated after me because he was dealing with multiple chronic conditions, which is the main reason for our separation.”
“My daughter never wanted us to divorce and she blamed me when the court granted me custody, because her dad was not able to care for her.”
“I don’t hate my ex-husband, he’s my daughter’s father, and losing him is devastating for me. That is why I wanted to grief in peace.”
“As for my in-laws, they resent me for initiating divorce in the first place and accused me of abandoning their son.”
The OP also thought her daughter would have enough other support at the funeral.
“Plus, her grandparents and her younger uncle whom she adores so much will be there, so that is good enough.”
“I also offered to have my brother drive her there and return her home later, but she refused and kept begging that I go with her.”
“I told her no and that I have my reasons and that’s it.”
Her daughter was unhappy with the OP’s suggestions.
“She unloaded on me yesterday, calling me bitter and selfish, and she said that my hatred for her dad is still there and is disgusting.”
“I was really hurt. I had an argument with her but didn’t punish her for what she called me, because she’s grieving and is processing her father’s passing.”
“I just cut the argument short and told her to go upstairs.”
“She went inside her room and refused to come out for lunch and dinner.”
“My boyfriend tried to stay with her and get her to eat, but she refused.”
The OP’s new boyfriend stood up for her daughter.
“My boyfriend told me later that this is obviously something my daughter is not dealing with properly.”
“He suggested I just go to the funeral because if I don’t, then there will be lasting resentment from my daughter.”
“I went to bed but couldn’t sleep over this.”
“I feel like just because she wants this doesn’t mean I just go with it. I never push her to do anything she doesn’t wanna do.”
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 stressed how much the OP’s daughter needed her.
“YTA. Relationships are not about not forcing the other person to do something they don’t want to. Relationships are about occasionally doing something YOU don’t want to in order to support the other person.”
“This is your daughter’s father. She asked you to be there for her. She’s still underage. Be there for her. She needs you.” – zero_gravity94
“YTA, I understand that it will be hard for you, but it’s harder for her. Her dad is dead and she needs her mother. Step up.” – Comfortable_Stop_717
“My ex-husband and I don’t get along at all. He did some pretty nasty things to our kids and me after we split.”
“If he died, I would not want to go to his funeral, either, but I would suck it up and go if one of my kids needed me to go for emotional support.” – 3TreeTraveller
“This isn’t about you. It’s not about the ex. It’s not about the in-laws.”
“Let’s make this about a 16-year-old child who lost their father. You go, you be respectful, you keep your thoughts to yourself, you murmur neutral or heartfelt words of comfort to his daughter, parents, siblings, and you make sure your daughter is ok.”
“YTA.” – Princess-SHE-Ra
“Her 16-year-old CHILD is doing the teenage version of ‘I want my mommy,’ and this mother is like ‘no.’ Unless you are in extreme fear for your safety, go to the funeral with her.” – NeverIncorrectBanana
“My uncle went to his ex-wife’s funeral to be there for their kids, despite the fact that the children were in their 40s/50s and some had grown-up children of their own.”
“At the kid’s weddings, they both attended but asked not to sit next to each other because they didn’t get on.”
“Because that’s what loving parents do.” – iolas79
“Jesus. She didn’t ask to be created by you two, have parents that split, and now one that has passed. In this role you are the ex-daughter in law, you are a mother. That’s it. That’s what she needs. Do better. YTA in a big way.” – tigerlily2021
Others said the OP was trying to abandon the daughter just like her ex-husband.
“You missed the best part. OP left her husband BECAUSE he got sick and he was ‘taking up so much of her time.’ OP literally abandoned someone in their time of need cause it was hard.”
“I doubt she will ever be helpful to her daughter.” – RolanBooker
“She divorced him cause he was sick. She doesn’t want to face the in-laws because they know that when he needed her – she bailed. And now her daughter needs her – she’s trying to bail on her.”
“Seems like a pattern to me.” – JessiFay
“OP abandoned her severely ill husband and now is abandoning her intensely grieving child because she is seemingly incapable of actually caring about someone more than she cares about herself. Wow.” – shapiro18
“I see zero signs of shame. Since all I see is ‘me me me me’ from OP, she knows everyone there will be judging her for abandoning her ex.”
“She’d rather her daughter suffer alone than deal with anyone who doesn’t see her as the good and decent person she’s convinced herself she is.” – DragonCelica
“YTA. Funerals are for the living. You should consider it supporting your daughter not honoring your ex. Mom went to Dad’s service even though they had been divorced for decades. She went to support her kids and grandkids. Your daughter deserves better.” – Trin959
Some pointed out how the OP would likely lose her daughter over this.
“This is one of the most crucial and important points in her daughter’s teenage life. This will be a moment that impacts her for the rest of her life and how her mother chose to act at that moment will never be forgotten.”
“OP will severely damage her relationship with her daughter. YTA.” – NewBromance
“YTA. That’s your 16-year-old daughter and you’re just not willing to support her doing the hardest thing she will ever do? You’re not a mum. You just gave birth to her.” – pinguthegreek
“I swear there are some days where AITA should be renamed, ‘This is Why My Kid Doesn’t Talk To Me Anymore.'”
“OP, if you’d ‘never make her do something she doesn’t want to,’ that’s great. Your child asked for your help, in a situation that will absolutely affect your relationship if you don’t help her.”
“So you get to decide what matters more: your discomfort or your child. It’s as simple as that.” – WhiteRoses7252012
“You’re the mom, she’s the child. She just lost her dad. She needs you right now, and has explicitly told You that, and yet you still refuse.”
“It’s not always about you. As parents, we often do things that make us uncomfortable in order to make sure our children are okay.”
“Your boyfriend is right. She isn’t dealing with it well. Who would? She lost one parent, and has another who is emotionally unavailable during a very hard time for her.”
“If you want my advice, suck it up. Go to the funeral for your daughter. Be there for her. You’re all she has now and she needs you.” – Wolf-Pack85
While the OP was focused on her own comfort at the funeral and not wanting to interact with the people who would accuse her of abandoning her chronically ill ex-husband, the subReddit insisted this moment needed to be about her daughter.
Though sixteen, her daughter was still a child who was asking for her mother’s help. Surely the funeral would be uncomfortable for her, her daughter needed her, and if she was unable to be there for her, she might have to say goodbye to a future relationship with her soon-to-be-adult daughter.