We all want to protect our children from the worst things for them, and sometimes, those things are other people. We have no control over how other kids behave, but we do have some control over our own, and naturally we are always concerned about ours.
Redditor wellflippitydippity found her own child in a situation with a peer who is setting a strange example of behavior. Wanting to protect her child, she banned the offender from hanging out with her.
When her daughter’s friend and that friend’s parents did not take this news well, she went to the popular subReddit “Am I The A**hole?” or “AITA” to get objective feedback on her behavior from strangers.
“AITA for not letting my daughter be friends with her pregnant friend?”
Our original poster, or OP, set the stage of her daughter’s friendship with a difficult friend.
“My daughter, ‘Jana’ is 16 and a sophomore in high school. Her freshman year she made friends with ‘Gia,’ also 16.”
“Gia has always been a bit rebellious and has shown some behavioral issues that her parents have been working very hard with her to fix, including therapy as a family and separately.”
“But lately Gia has been doing well, my daughter has been trying to help her, and Gia’s mom has said my daughter has been a huge help by setting a good example.”
This friendship took a sharp turn when Gia was found to be pregnant.
“Anyway, Jana came home last week and informed me that Gia is pregnant.”
“Apparently Gia convinced her boyfriend to do this with her, despite the poor kid being a 15 year old freshman and she’s now six months pregnant but she’s been hiding it.”
“From what Jana has told me Gia’s parents and the boy’s parents have known for a while but Gia didn’t tell Jana until recently.”
“My daughter has always been serious, a pragmatist, she also binge-watches 16 and Pregnant so she’s got a pretty good idea what Gia is in for.”
“I feel really badly for Gia, she made a stupid choice but she’s 16 and I remember thinking I knew everything at 16 and it took some life happening to teach me. I don’t judge Gia, I wish her the best.”
However, Gia has been trying to get Jana to join in her pregnancy.
“My Jana has been very upset, she said Gia has been urging her to get pregnant as well, saying they’ll raise their babies together, be roommates, basically Bev and Fay from Riding in Cars with Boys before their babies were born and they realized it was actually hard work.”
“Jana is dating someone but she told me she obviously has no intention of becoming a mother anytime soon.”
“And every time she tries to talk to Gia about the realities Gia and her boyfriend will face, Gia just blows her off and says that it’ll work out and everything will be fine, and she wants Jana to have a baby, too so she can have someone to do everything with.”
“This is disturbing to me for all the obvious reasons and Jana has let me read the texts and DM’s between herself and Gia.”
OP made a difficult choice to protect her daughter.
“Frankly Gia’s behavior is dangerous to me and it’s causing my daughter severe anxiety and guilt because she wants to be there for her friend but she also thinks her friend has gone off the deep end.”
“I decided this is a moment where I need to make the choice for her since she’s having trouble and I told her that she can no longer be friends with Gia.”
“To be honest, Jana seemed a little relieved to finally have the ‘my mom said no’ excuse.”
But Gia’s parents, who only have half the story, are upset on Gia’s behalf.
“I guess Gia has told her parents that I’m not allowing Jana and she to be friends anymore and her parents showed up at our house and basically accused us of, oh to list a few, judging their parenting, judging Gia, being bigots, misogyny, Sexism, intolerance.”
“It was not a pleasant conversation and it took a great deal of work to make them leave our property.”
“Gia’s mom has been telling our mutual friends that I’m a b*tch and we’re horrible people and it’s starting to cause fractures within long-time friendships as people take sides.”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Redditors praised the mom for reading her daughter correctly.
“NTA – it sounds like you read the room well if your daughter is truly relieved.”
“It’s not surprising that they came round to take their grief out on you, I’m pretty sure they feel guilty for how their daughter’s turned out and it’s easier to be mad at you.”
“As much as Gia needs someone to be a role model, that can’t be at the expense of your daughter’s mental health.”-jjswin
“Gia is going to be busy, changing diapers, feeding a baby, juggling a baby with school, etc. Jana is going to be busy going to prom, going to football games, getting ready for college.”
“Their lives are just going to be heading down different paths. It is not unusual for friendships to diverge at this point, and there should be no shame or recrimination for this.”
“The problem is Gia, trying to force your daughter down this path, too. As a mom, you did what *your* daughter needed to help her stay on her own path.”
“We call that ‘good parenting.’ Well done, you!”-chipsandsalsa_stat
“Hooooolllly sh*t so many red flags. Yea, it would be one thing if Jana still wanted to be friends and you just shut it down.”
“You are protecting your daughter in my opinion. This girl is essentially bullying your daughter and you’re putting a stop to it.”
“Also, I remember being 16 and holy sh*t, the thought of having a kid then scared me. Hell, I’m now 30 and it still scares me to have kids.”
“Plus, you know how your mom always said ‘You’d never jump off a bridge if everyone else was’? NTA”-nerdyconstructiongal
“Yeah, I was completely expecting Y T A based on the title, but it sounds like this was more a case of OP letting their daughter use them as ‘the bad guy’ when she was struggling to set boundaries in a toxic friendship.”
“Ideally, they could have coached the daughter through setting boundaries on her own… but given how extreme this situation got, I’m not surprised a sixteen year old needed help to deal with it.”-minuteye
While it could be easy to misjudge this from the initial title, it seems like OP really did want her child to feel less stressed.
“NTA. You are responsible for your daughter. Every decision should be based on her well-being.”
“So a pregnant 16 year old with behavioral issues who’s forcing your daughter to get pregnant as well is a huge no go!”
“You did the right thing, keep your daughter safe. As for Gia‘s Parents instead of coming to your house and criticizing you they should think long and hard about their parenting methods.”
“Seeing as how they’ve clearly failed. Good luck!”-Schnucksworld
“Typically I would say Y-T-A for telling your kids they can’t be friends with someone they still want in their life. But if this is accurate:”
“‘To be honest, Jana seemed a little relieved to finally have the “my mom said no” excuse.'”
“And you should talk with your daughter to be sure it is, then NTA because sometimes having something to point at and say ‘that’s why, it’s not me’ is needed when learning to set boundaries and to remove toxic people from your lives. Especially as a teenager.”-JustNoThrowsAway
“You seem to have very close relationship with your daughter, she tells you everything, shows you everything, this doesn’t happen often between teens and parents.”
“I think it is great you have this kind of relationship. This goes both sides. You must have trust in your daughter (that she woudn’t follow Gia’s demands).”
“However considering the situation as it is: ‘it’s causing my daughter severe anxiety and guilt because she wants to be there for her friend but she also thinks her friend has gone off the deep end.'”
“‘Jana seemed a little relieved to finally have the “my mom said no” excuse.'”
“I say NTA. And in connection to the family 100% NTA.”
“I would explain to them that your daughter was getting anxiety because of their daughter and if they don’t take it then it is up to them.”-xmeitsme
“NTA. This is an awful situation for Jana. Gia has no right to pressure her into making such a big life decision at her young age.”
“It’s also far too much pressure Gia’s parents have put on Jana’s shoulders. Your daughter shouldn’t have to be her guide and good influence, thats their job as Gia’s parents.”
“You’re doing the right thing for your daughter. Communicate with your daughter and let her know that you are more than happy to take the heat for not allowing them to see each other.”
“Make sure she knows it’s no trouble for you doing that for her. You’re just doing what any parent should do for their teen in this situation.”
“Don’t forget to let her know how proud you are of her. Peer pressure is rife at that age and she’s clearly an intelligent girl and has done well not giving in to such ridiculous pressure from her supposed friend.”-Dont-trust-it
And it seems like not everybody who has become involved is getting the full story from Gia’s parents.
“NTA. You’re a good mum. It’s not like you found out she was pregnant and immediately said you can’t be friends anymore.”
“Gia is definitely trying to get into your daughters head and being 16 your very curious and do things to fit in so I understand why you’re being protective.”
“Also it seems like Jana knows that Gia isn’t doing well and is a little stand offish so that’s a good start.”
“Just think about it. Soon Gia will give birth and she won’t have time for friends and Jana will see that Gia isn’t living the glamorous life of a young Mum.”-alanambl
“NTA –After reading your comments that you’ve put those texts, etc. out there to her parents and others, it’s sadly down to everybody has an opinion.”
“Those that are continuing to judge you badly after knowing the whole story – are judging from arms length. Meaning it’s not THEIR child being bombarded with poor peer pressure.”
“Work on coming up with a one or two line response: I know you don’t agree with me, but you aren’t in our shoes.”
“‘Our daughter has been there for Gia through almost everything, and we’ve supported their friendship as well.'”
“Yet in this day and age there is only so much pressure a teenager can take. I wonder how you’d feel if it was your child being peer pressured into getting herself pregnant (or impregnating a girl)?”
“We’re making a very difficult decision to help our daughter navigate this and unless you are in our shoes, maybe your judgement should be reserved.”-Babsgarcia
“Hell no NTA. Good for you for having your daughter’s back.”
“The problem was not the pregnancy in and of itself, the problem was Gia attempting to make her problems everyone else’s problem.”
“Clearly behavior she learned from her parents if they would rather badmouth you than address the behavior on Gia’s part that cost her a friend.”-crockofpot
“NTA. Your daughter has come to you because she has a friend pressuring her and causing her distress.”
“She was looking for some help from you and you’ve done that, which is great. Gia and her family have a tough road ahead of them and it seems like they’re not coping super well at the moment.”
“As long as you take the high road and resist the urge to trash talk Gia or her family or share the texts between the girls, you’ll be in the clear.”-Herculosis
OP acted in her daughter’s best interest, which her daughter also appreciated, so Reddit had absolutely no problem with the way she went about things.
Hopefully Gia can get steady and get her life on track, but that may have to happen without OP’s daughter.