Having children is a personal choice that does not come lightly.
Raising a family can be difficult enough, but for one mother of two things got tense after her sister refused to stop referring to her in a derogatory way after she was first able to conceive.
The mother, a Redditor who goes by superwhovianlock, turned to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for some objective thoughts on the situation.
”AITA for not allowing my sibling to see my kids because of a ‘nickname’ she calls me?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained her familial upset:
“My (33 F[emale]) sister (36F) has always been slightly upset over the path I took in life. I got married, had two kids and was a SAHM (stay at home mom) for the past few years up until my divorce.”
“She loves my kids (8 M[ale] and 5F) and loves to brag about being an Auntie. My sister and I had a tough time growing up together because of our own issues and were never really close.”
“However, when she found out I was able to have a viable pregnancy, she got….weird. She’s never had kids of her own and now refers to me as ‘The breeder’, as I am the only one of my siblings to have kids.”
“At first I brushed it off because it’s weird but not really malicious. Or so I thought.”
After the OP initially tried ignoring the comments however, things got worse after the birth of her second child.
“When my youngest was born early she refused to show up because the middle name was a name she had wanted and I ‘should have waited til she had a child to have another’ she now uses the name ‘breeder’ to refer to me.”
“I’ve told her I dont like it and to use my name. She has refused.”
”At one point she called our mother and asked ‘hows the breeder’ to which our mom told her to either call me by my name or hang up. She chose to end the call.”
“I get she may be upset that I have kids and my heart goes out to her, but at the same time I feel like she can’t say she’s happy to be an aunt and loves my kids if she is constantly being mad at how she even has a niece and nephew in the first place.”
”I have told her the name bothers me and she continued so I all but cut her off. Her messeges get left on read and I bitch-block when she calls.”
“I leave her out of social media posts involving my kids and dont take my kids to places if she is there.”
”This has caused friction as my mother backs me up and is accused of only taking my side because I’m the breeder and gave her grandkids (my moms opinion on it comes down to ‘they are your kids. Do what you want’).”
The situation escalated when OP’s sister decided to involve friends in the name-calling and drama.
”I’ve gotten messages from her friends about how I’m a horrible sister and she misses the kids and I’m doing this because I’m the breeder and have nothing else to ‘hold over her’.”
“I refuse to back down until she stops calling me that but as her friends are using the term, I dont see it happening.”
“So reddit, AITA?”
The OP added a response after receiving several comments.
“EDIT: I understand why everyone is suggesting calling her barren but I do not want to A) stoop to her level, B) hurt her the way she has hurt me and more importantly C) teach my kids that it’s acceptable to be rude and mock someone for things out of their control.”
Redditors were asked what they thought by deciding:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors reached a consensus declaring the OP was NTA.
“NTA, your sister sounds like a bitter, jealous A-H though. Nope. No contact with you or the kids until she respects you and your feelings.”
“How would she feel if you called her ‘the barren’ or ‘the unwanted’ or something similarly vile that relates to why she doesn’t have kids. She’d hate it.”
“Also, if something starts as a joke and turns nasty it’s still nasty. And when someones says ‘oh it’s just a joke’ they don’t get to decide how it makes you feel.”~opheliasdinosaur
“NTA. You’re doing the right thing by enforcing healthy boundaries and your sister cannot respect this. Even your mother is enforcing the healthy boundaries by requiring your sister to call you by your name or hang up.”
“I’m every situation your sister is refusing to be empathic and see how it affects you. Do not reward her behavior by caving in.”
“Refuse her auntie privileges until she can grow up and respect you for who you are — life choices and middle names and all.”~Mister_Nancy
”NTA, but your sister sure is! I hate hate hate it when people use the word ‘breeder’ for parents.”
“It’s such a dehumanizing way to refer to a person with ovaries — literally reducing you to your reproductive capabilities and choices.”
“If she ever apologizes for this and stops calling you by this horrible nickname, then maybe you can be open to having a civil relationship with her.”
“Maybe. As for now, you’re doing what you must to protect yourself (and your family).”~plenty_of_paper
“NTA- As someone who is infertile all 5 of my sisters have kids like a lot of kids and I love all my nieces and nephews to pieces. I would never take my jealousy or insecurities out on my sisters for being able to have kids, it isn’t their faults I am infertile.”
“It sounds like your sister needs to work her self out and get some therapy.”~jaymslyn
”NTA- My best friend who is a child free lesbian, also fun aunt, once called me a breeder. ONCE.
I told her I don’t call her nasty slurs, and I expect the same treatment from her. She immediately apologized and never did it again.”
“Because she wasn’t trying to be a terrible person. If someone can’t be civil to a parent of a child, then they don’t get a relationship with those kids.”~kknits
”NTA, it’s like when someone refers to a woman as ‘female’ it degrades her to nothing more than a single existence. If she can’t respect the children’s mother then she doesn’t deserve to be around them.”~IllustriousComplex6
“NTA she can see the children whenever she wants to. All she has to do is decide that seeing your children is more important than calling you by a disgusting and offensive name and getting whatever payoff she gets out of doing it.
You are absolutely right not to retaliate. She can’t help the reality that she can’t have children.”
“I feel for her, and also it is very clear the answer to whatever grief she is going through is not to retaliate against you because you do have children. You deserve to be respected, and she needs to address you with respect or pay the forfeit.”~Medievalmoomin
Some people have children and others do not, the important thing is to respect each others choices and boundaries.