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Parent Irate After Their 8-Year-Old Ditches Siblings To Cut Lines And Ride Solo At Amusement Park

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All parents want to teach their children the importance of right and wrong, and proper manners.

Some like to take a more hands-on approach and make it abundantly clear when their children are misbehaving or have done something wrong, and others like to let them figure it out for themselves.

While there isn’t necessarily a right or wrong method, what’s important is that their children do learn their lesson, and grow from it.

Redditor selfishsinglerider recently took their children to an outing at the zoo with their sister and her children.

During the visit, the original poster (OP) was surprised and upset that one of their children wasn’t spending time with their siblings or cousins, which was the main reason for the outing.

As a result, the OP let their disappointment in their child be known in no uncertain terms.

But after their methods were criticized by their sister and husband, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where they asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for calling my 8 year old selfish?”

The OP explained why a visit to the zoo with their children and niblings ended in tears for their 8-year-old child.

“I have 3 kids (7, 8, 10) and my sister has 2 (7 and 10).”

“We went on vacation together recently and we took the kids to a zoo that also had a few rides.”

“The kids went on the rides while my sister and I got coffee nearby.”

“We told them to meet us at a certain table when they were done.”

“My 8 year old came to me much earlier than her siblings/cousins.”

“I asked if the rides scared her and she said no, she just skipped the lines.”

“I asked for clarification and she said when there was extra space on the ride, they asked for single riders to come up to the front so she did that for all 5 rides.”

“I told her the point of her going with her siblings and cousins is to have fun with them and that it was selfish for her to leave them so she could cut the line.”

“I told her I understand why she doesn’t have many friends if this is how she acts all the time and she started to cry and ran to my sister.”

“My sister ended up buying her ice cream and said that I was too harsh.”

“She told my husband and he’s mad at me for speaking to her like that.”

“AITA for calling my daughter selfish?”

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
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

The OP found little to no support from the Reddit community, who unanimously agreed that they were, indeed the a**hole for the way they treated their daughter.

Everyone agreed that while the OP’s concerns may have been valid, they were overtly harsh in the way they tried to get it across, and calling their daughter selfish, and pointing out that she didn’t have many friends, was uncalled for, and going way too far.


“Your words were cruel and inappropriate.”

“Insulting her like a mean girl does not inspire her to change.”

“You scorched her world with this one.”- DesertSong-LaLa


“Maybe the woman whose own sister, husband, and child are mad at her should look inward if she’s concerned about actions resulting in loss of friends.”- JeepersCreepers74


“You bullied your daughter.”

“Instead of parenting your children, you left them alone and then attack your daughter for her choice to not wait with the others.”

“She’ll remember you telling her that she doesn’t have friends for the rest of her life.”

“You blamed her for your failure to supervise your own children.”- squirrelsareevil2479

“Her own mom telling her ‘this is why you don’t have many friends’ will be a core memory of hers forever.”

“Congratulations on permanently and irreparably damaging your relationship with your daughter.”

“YTA.”- sicksyrups


“Your daughter did not ‘cut in line’. She volunteered when the ride operator asked for single riders.”

“The point of vacation is to relax and enjoy yourselves.”

“Your daughter did nothing wrong. Quite frankly, she’s a pretty smart cookie.”

“Just because her idea of fun isn’t the same as yours doesn’t give you the right to insult your child.”

“Yep, YTA, all right.”- Heloise_Morris


“The kid has the confidence and independence to ride by herself.”

“She doesn’t need her siblings or cousins to hold her hand and was having fun.”

“Your words were cruel and unnecessary.”

“She didn’t cut the line.”

“The other kids just didn’t take advantage of an opportunity.”- sheramom4


“There’s 5 kids, and I bet they paired up and left her out.”

“Most rides require 2 people.”

“Tell me you dislike your child without telling me you dislike your child.”- Agreeable-Book-7018


“There is no way you get to say the words ‘I understand why you don’t have many friends and not be the a**hole.”- HugeInTheShire


“This was a teaching moment, not annihilate my child moment.”- Zookeeper-007


“You are being too harsh. I’m surprised if you have any friends yourself, OP.”- SpeedBlitzX


“Your words were cruel.”

“Do understand that the ‘singles’ line is designed to move the lines along as quickly as possible while keeping standard-sized groups together?”

“Do you know what the standard grouping was on those rides?”

“Usually, it’s four.”

“Or multiples of two.”

“Great planning, Mom.”- JazzyKnowsBest13


“The kids went on rides, and you got coffee.”

“Who was watching the kids?”

“8 was bored and stepped up to take advantage of opportunities.”

“And you called her out?”


“Typical middle child.”

“I bet 10/10 and 7/7 were hanging out.”

“I applaud 8 for being confident enough to step out and up.”

“Maybe you should try some applause instead of berating comments.”- Lucky-Guess8786

“Jeez, you’re nasty.”

“You are a bully. You’re not a good parent.”

“There was a right way to talk to your daughter, and that was NOT it.”

“Do you normally resort to insults every time you discipline your kids?”

“Grow up, a**hole.”

“And you’re a hypocrite.”

“You weren’t even spending time with the kids; you were sitting on your ass guzzling coffee.”

“YTA.”- No_Confidence5235

“I would 100% say YTA, you’re the a**hole.”

“The kid is f**king 8. Instead of treating this as a teaching moment, you tell your own child, ‘I get why you have no friends’.”

“The Hell is wrong with you?”- DarthDringal


“Your daughter found a smart way to get on all the rides she wanted, and you call her selfish and say that is why she doesn’t have friends.”

“How cruel.”

“You could have told her in a nicer way that the point of the outing was to hang out with her family, you didn’t have to go nuclear.”

“She is only 8. Words do hurt at that age, especially from a parent.”- DontAskMeChit


“Calling your kid selfish and putting them down instead of explaining in a productive way why cutting lines instead of staying with her siblings and cousin was maybe not the best.”

“She is f*cking 8.”

“You are her mother, one of the main sources of giving stability and validation of her being okay and lovable the way she is.”

“This kinda stuff can stick with her all her life and severely damage her psychologically by you saying that you think she is not good enough to have friends.”


“I hope you apologize to her and think about how to talk to your children.”- InuKimi

“Damn, to an 8yo?”

“I don’t see her actions as selfish at all.”

“Just a kid being a kid.”

“Especially as a middle child (I am one too), she must already have trouble fitting in, but to have your own mom call you friendless.”


“YTA, hope you are saving up for therapy, coz she is gonna need it.”- Optimal_Ad_352


“First, I think the kids were too young just to let go on their own.”

“They were nearby but not in eyesight.”

“That’s not good.”

“Second, there was an odd number which isn’t good for rides.”

“She took the single rider.”

“They all could have.”

“She was faster.”

“Third, what an awful, awful thing to say to a child.”

“She didn’t cut the line.”

“She wasn’t selfish.”

“And I bet she has a lot of friends.”

“Way to drive your kid away from you.”- FuzzyMom2005

“Your daughter is displaying signs of being intellectually gifted and you called her selfish.”

“YTA.”- MsFrenchieFry

“YTA an eight-year-olds brain is developed to prioritize self.”

“It’s the parent’s responsibility to teach them how to exist in society by modeling those interactions.”

“Not by verbally attacking them and shaming them.”

“All you taught your 8-year-old today is that you aren’t a safe person to talk to, but her aunt is.”-fabulousautie

It’s understandable that the OP was upset that their daughter wasn’t spending quality time with her siblings or cousins.

Or even that they might have been concerned about their lack of friends.

But scolding her in the way they did was not going to teach her any kind of lesson, and instead would only make her feel even worse about herself.

Hopefully, the OP will reflect on their behavior and give their daughter the apology she deserves.

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'.