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Teen Guilt-Ridden After Refusing To Give Up Her Spot In Line At Fair For A Mom And Her Kids

Filip Mroz/Unsplash

Waiting in line is never fun.

Be it for a ride at an amusement park, checking out at the grocery store, or at airport security, there are very few people who don’t wish they could always skip the line, no matter the end result.

Sometimes, however, people will let others cut in front of them, in cases of emergencies, or just out of the generosity of their own heart.

But should anyone ever feel obligated to let someone cut in front of them?

Redditor Capable_Salary3801 felt guilty when she chose not to let a mother and her two kids cut in front of her for a ride at her local fair.

And when the mother in question scolded her for her behavior, the original poster (OP), only felt all the worse.

Continuing to feel guilty about her decision, the original poster (OP), took to the subReddit “Am I the A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for not giving up my spot in line for a mother and her kids?”

The OP explained that her predicament took place while waiting in line for the ferris wheel at her local town fair.

“Last week my town had a small spring fair.”

“It was supposed to happen in last month April, but got pushed back after I assume what was one of the major overseers had a family emergency.”

“Now keep in mind what I just said: a small fair.”

“For a small town.”

“There were rides, but mostly meant for little kids.”

“The only rides really any teens & adults could enjoy was the ferris wheel and teacups, which were quite popular because of that fact.”

“Anyway, in this case I(18 F[emale]) was in line for the ferris wheel, and there was a bit of a line behind me.”

“And the ferris wheel, being a bit small and almost 100 years old, only fits two passengers per ‘car’.”

“I thought at least four people could go in behind me, but apparently that wasn’t the case, according to a woman, I’d say about in her 40s who kindly asked me to give up my spot for her and her three kids, don’t know their ages, but all younger than 13 probably.”

“Now if it hadn’t been so busy, I probably would obliged.”

“But I felt since I was young and if I gave up my seat for her, I’d then be excepted to give it up for every other older adult or child in the line.”

“And me being horribly socially anxious as I am, I didn’t want to have to reject them and potentially cause a conflict there, too.”

“So I told the mother no.”

“She wasn’t really rude about getting rejected, but her and her kid’s disappointment was palpable, she did scoff a bit when I turned away.”

“I wouldn’t have felt so bad about this, but then I was seated next to her so she and her kids could actually ride at the same time.”

“The kids were separated into two different cars and it was awkward.”

“She even mentioned how she would’ve preferred riding with one of her children instead, with the implication that I was the reason she couldn’t.”

“The memory makes me cringe so much.”


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 Reddit community was in agreement that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to give up her place in line.

Just about everyone agreed that children shouldn’t always guarantee getting special treatment, and the OP having to give up her seat was not the only way for the woman to ride the ferris wheel with her children at the same time.


“She could have waited until she could ride with one of her children.”

“Why didn’t she?”

“And her kids being disappointed is her fault, not yours.”

” It was inappropriate for her to ask you to let her skip.”- niennabobenna

“NTA, you are worth having a ride just like woman and kids.”

“And if cars are only big enough for 2 riders, then she would have not been seated with her kids anyways.”

“Otherwise they would have put her in there with them.”

“This was on HER, not you.”-notquiteright519

“You are absolutely NTA.”

“People who have children are not entitled to better treatment than people without kids.”-White_Unicorn

“No, NTA.”

“Being a mother doesn’t give you special treatment cause you decided to have a bunch of kids.”

“There’s no reason they couldn’t have gotten to the front and simply asked the ride operator if they could wait one more cycle so that she could ride with her children.”- SelfStudy657

“NTA and I hope you can get some peace and stop overthinking the memory.”

“That is what lines are for.”

“And she was free to wait until the next car to ride with her kids and have the people behind her share your car, she chose not to.”-cornflower27


“She’s not the AH for asking, but she is for being passive aggressive about it afterwards.”

“She isn’t entitled to your spot.”

“If you said yes, it would be out of the kindness of your heart, not because you were obligated to do so.”

“And if your heart doesn’t want to do it, don’t do it.”- beautiful_angel_girl


“She could have given her spot in line to the person behind her so she could ride with her kids.”-G0mery


“Just because someone has offspring doesn’t entitle them to skip lines.”

“As a parent myself I can tell you that if you want to arrange things so the whole family gets on the ride at the sane time, you negotiate with the people BEHIND you and offer to let them go first.”

“And even then, no one owes you anything just because you have children.”-IAmHerdingCatz

“NTA, you also waited in line.”

“If she wasn’t seated with her kids behind you, she probably wouldn’t have been seated with all of them anyway if you weren’t there, maybe one of them.”

“But like, as a parent or older sibling, you make sacrifices and sit next to strangers, so the kids can all sit together and have more fun, thats just how it is.”- Pineconium


“This is a common issue, and it is the operator’s responsibility to sort it out.”- WholeCollection6454

“NTA nothing I hate more than ppl trying to cut, she could’ve asked the operator to seat her with her kids?”

“They were not crying or in a hurry, why not wait or ask to be seated together?”- ReydeMangos18


“If she wanted to ride with them so bad she could have talked to the ride operator and held back for a pod that could fit all of them.”- jetgirljen


“My daughter has managed to survive long lines to ride rides.”

“It’s not a hardship.”

“This lady could have waited her turn so they could all ride together.”

“And she had a lot of nerve asking you.”- friendlily


“She wasn’t an AH to ask but she should’ve have been polite and accepted your no.”

“You also wouldn’t have to give up your spot to every kid in line if you’d agreed.”-lets_talk_aboutsplet

“You are 100% NTA.”

“That mother wasn’t rude for asking but rude for the snide comments while riding with you.”-Bright_Sea_7567

“She could have bumped up people behind her in line to be able to sIt together instead of guilting you.”

“NTA.”- aggressively-so-so


“If she wanted to share with her children instead of you, the proper thing for her to do would have been let people BEHIND her go ahead of her so she could with her kids.”

“She needs to learn manners.”-holisarcasm


“I had three kids.”

“I never presumed upon people to let me cut in line or get extras or any special treatment when at these kinds of events.”

“Everyone waits in line and takes a turn.”

“The only exception is when someone has a child with sensory issues, and needs extra space for this reason.”

“That I have NO problem with.”- Educational-Food9471.


“And isn’t it funny that she just asked you, not the people directly behind you?”

“As if someone in your age has nothing better to do as waiting in line for nothing.”

“And won’t enjoy a nice ferry wheel ride.”

“But often small children don’t even value 100 y/o ferry wheel and the view you can get on it.”

“So i don’t see why parents think that a ferry wheel is a children attraction or that they need special treatment.”

“I hope you enjoyed the ride.”-EvilFinch.

Needless to say, it would have been extremely generous for the OP to give up her place in line for the woman and her children.

But she was in no way obligated, as she had been waiting just as long to ride as they had, and they all were able to ride the ferris wheel.

Here’s hoping this event stops hovering over the OP’s conscience sooner rather than later.

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'.