We should all be able to agree, parenting is difficult and certainly has the same responsibility level as an out-of-home job, if not more so.
But some parents have access to many more resources than others.
One woman on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit found herself needing help from someone she helped out frequently.
But when she didn’t receive the support she needed, Redditor Dangerous-Rabbit-473 decided to be blunt and tell it like it is.
After receiving backlash, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she had gone too far.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my sister her being a ‘stay-at-home mom’ is a joke and she is just selfish?”
The OP began her story with a clarification.
“I want to make it clear I’m NOT [criticizing] being a stay-at-home mom (SAHM), just my sister’s version of it.”
“I know how much hard work it is and I’m not putting anyone down for it.”
“But my sister really does just sit around doing nothing all day, while somebody else does all the work and then whines about how hard it is being a SAHM and I’ve had enough of it.”
The OP had always felt like the opposite of her sister.
“My Sister C (26[Female]) and I (24[Female]) have always been polar opposites, so we do clash on quite a few things, but generally we are close.”
“She has two kids Rose (6[Female]) and Ty (7[Male]) and I have a son Oz (2) and they’re really close.”
“C has always been a SAHM ever since she left school and never had a job, whereas I’ve always been career-driven.”
“My job’s hours can be long and irregular but I love it, though if I ever say I’m tired or I’ve had a hard day, C has to one-up me and say how she’s even MORE tired or has had an even HARDER day, because she a SAHM so she must work 24/7.”
The OP was also critical of her sister’s life as a “SAHM.”
“The thing is all the things a SAHM does, she doesn’t.”
“Both kids are at school and her husband Dan is the one that gets them ready, helps with homework, cooks all the meals.”
“They have a cleaner, and C doesn’t drive, so my mum picks kids up from school and looks after them till Dan gets home from work.”
“Most weekends, Dan will bring the kids over to me, I live a 10 min walk away, so C can have a ‘break’.”
“So I don’t have much sympathy for her, but most of the time I just let it go.”
Recently when the OP needed help, she didn’t receive the help her sister often received.
“But last week was half-term, and I was able to get most of the week off, but on Friday there was an emergency at work, so I needed to go in immediately.”
“My husband was away, and my nanny and babysitter were busy, so I asked mum if she could look after Oz, as I had to go in to work urgently. But she couldn’t as she was looking after Rose.”
“I asked where C was, and mum told me she was at home but was feeling tried so needed a rest.”
“I said that she could bring Rose over but she couldn’t, as Rose had friends over for a playdate.”
“But I took Oz and rushed over to C’s house to beg mum to take him.”
“While I’m talking to mum, C came down. I explained the situation but she said that as Rose has friends over, it would be inappropriate for Oz to be there.”
“So I asked why mum couldn’t take Oz back home for a few hours and C watched the girls.”
“C seemed offended by the suggestion that she should look after her own child herself.”
“And I had about had enough and knew this was just wasting time when I had to get to work, so I said, ‘Well, thanks for nothing,’ and left and took Oz to work with me. It worked out fine but I was p**sed with C.”
The OP gave her sister blunt feedback, which she did not appreciate.
“So today I went over to C’s. I wanted to put the situation behind us and move on, but she brought it up.”
“She said she was waiting for an apology from me. When I laughed, she told me I just don’t get how hard being a SAHM is.”
“I told her she doesn’t even know what a hard job is and that the fact she calls herself a SAHM is a joke and that she is just lazy and selfish.”
“I left and she told me that I’m not welcome back.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some said the sister’s attitude was the main problem.
“Seriously, I’ve done both, and the thing about having a job is that you’re still a mom 24/7. So the sister acting like her job never ends is such a BS point because OP’s job of being a mom also never ends. As evidenced by this story when she had to take her son to work with her.”
“And honestly, I wouldn’t even have a problem with the sister being lazy. I think that’s so hard to judge about people from a distance, since there is any number of mental, emotional, and physical difficulties that can make it a real struggle for people to work or execute tasks.”
“The issue is how selfish and judgemental and demanding the sister is.”
“I think she clearly feels insecure about what she does, or rather doesn’t do, and takes it out on her sister. If you can’t have a job or do all of the strenuous day-to-day tasks of being a SAHM, whatever. It at least sounds like the children are taken care of, so you do you. But putting other people down so you can feel better about yourself is never OK.” – acemerrill
“It’s also never a good idea to repeatedly throw stones in a glasshouse. By pelting OP with comments that are clearly false about her struggles as a SAHM, she was bound to cause some structural damage to the relationship, it was just a matter of time.”
“OP’s reaction only felt like a personal assault bc it was so darn true, it managed to shatter her own false impression of herself. It sounds like the sister wraps WAY too much of her identity up in something she can’t actually stand to do.”
“It just kinda sounds like the sister spends as little alone time as possible with her kids while still calling herself a SAHM. If dad gets them ready in the morning and grandma does after school until dad picks them up, then sounds like mom spends zero time being the responsible party for them. Odd at best, lazy and selfish at worst.” – Dewhickey76
Others pointed out the sister needed a reality check but probably didn’t like it.
“Sometimes people need to hear to blunt truth to be able to really look at their own actions and how they directly affect the people around them. Not planning on giving up a bunch of personal info but I’ve been the selfish one, sometimes it needs to be addressed.” – TheHatter88
“OP is NTA. The sister deserves to be called out for being rude and judgemental. I just feel less confident criticizing people for being lazy. Especially people I don’t know.”
“I’ve certainly been the a-hole at times in my life and sometimes being bluntly called out is the only thing that works.” – acemerrill
The subReddit was quick to concede that the OP was not wrong to bluntly react to her sister about this, though it seems that there may be more going on with the sister to explain why she is such an absent SAHM.