Children’s fundraisers—the bane of parents’ existence.
Whether it’s for school, clubs or activities, there’s only so much wrapping paper, candles and chocolate people want to buy.
So why not just cut a check if you can?
A parent asking that exact question turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for feedback.
“AITA for telling my wife to either take my money or she can be responsible for fundraising?”
The original poster (OP) explained:
“My kid has to sell chocolate covered almonds as a fundraiser at school. I would rather just give them the amount he is going to raise but that isn’t allowed.”
“So I told my wife to just pay for two boxes out of my petty cash I keep on my office. I will take the almonds to work and give them out to my guys for free.
“My wife says that I’m missing the point and that I should take my son out to sell the almonds.”
“I think that is ridiculous.”
“I think I have better ways to spend several hours than to harass my neighbors trying to get them to buy chocolate.”
“I told her she could either go out and sell the chocolate herself or she could take my money.”
“Now she thinks I’m an a**hole because I don’t value her free time. She is a stay at home mom right now.”
“When our youngest is two she will be going back to work. I work 60 hours a week not including the commute.”
“Now she wants me to spend hours out selling chocolate. No thanks. My free time is valuable too.”
“Do you like people soliciting sales at your door?”
“I’d rather take him to.the pool. Spending a day on the rink or ice fishing with him is better for us.”
“He is happy when he catches a fish. He is happy when he is showing me how good his puck handling is getting. He is happy when he does a good flip or dive at the pool.”
“I would rather have happy memories of him instead of being miserable out walking around watching him be turned down over and over. He can be rejected later in life.”
“I do want to spend time with my kid. I only get to hang out and have fun with him while he is young for so long.”
“And the valuable lesson is that if you work and have money you do not have to do this stupid sh*t.”
The OP summed up their situation.
“I tried to just pay for the fundraising chocolate my kid has to sell for his school. My wife says I should take him out to sell it.”
“I might be the a**hole for giving her the choice of going out in the cold to harass our neighbors with her chocolate sales or she can take my money.”
“I absolutely refuse to spend my free time on this pointless task.”
Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
The overwhelming majority of Redditors felt the OP was not the a**hole (NTA).
“NTA. The only a**holes are the PTA or PTO that organized this fundraiser.”
“No one wants to flog or buy a $10 roll of gift wrap, $15 dollar box of chocolate covered almonds, a $20 bucket of frozen cookie dough, etc…”
“The school district my children attended banned these fundraisers a long time ago.” ~ Reddit
“NTA these ‘fundraisers’ are complette BS. They combine child labor with the pressure to ‘donate’.”
“When I was in school, we did a ‘fundraiser run’ where we had to get family members to sign documents that they would give x amount per kilometer we ran.”
“The money was supposed to go to a new hall for phys ed. Surprise surprise, I’m out of school for almost ten years now and there are no signs of a new hall yet.” ~ DozenBia
“NTA Yes! Both of your free time is valuable & this seems silly to turn into a big argument! There’s probably a compromise!”
“Can either you or your wife walk your son to two neighbors houses, he try’s to sell them almonds, gets the experience & then you buy the two boxes off him! That way it’s a 15 minute learning experience & not hours of knocking on doors.”
“Maybe whoever doesn’t have to walk your son to the neighbors does something off your chore list instead? Then you both are taking on an extra task for the family, instead of one person spending money & the other time to give their child a teachable moment.” ~ kt380
“NTA. I’d be doing the same thing. It’s the same outcome regardless, and encouraging kids to go around for donations is just blech.”
“Let any family and friends know you’re selling them and stick with your original plan.” ~ Vegetable_Stuff1850
“What exactly is ‘the point’ your wife says you are missing?”
“I just had my kid and the most random thought popped into my head just last night and it was exactly about this.”
“I was thinking ‘what if my kid has one of those damn chocolate fundraiser things she has to do from school’? I remember having to do this as a kid and hated having to ask people to buy my chocolate.”
“I don’t think I ever sold it all ’cause I remember just munchin’ down on some chocolate bars and I don’t remember ever getting in trouble for it or anything. Not exactly sure what happened after the whole thing was over.”
“I suspect my parents might have just done the same thing and paid for anything I didn’t sell myself.”
“I plan on doing the same thing if my kid ever has to do that trash. Pay it all and pass out some free chocolate at work.” ~ bidetatmaxsetting
“NTA. I do the exact same thing as you are suggesting. The school doesn’t care where the money comes from, they just want the money.” ~ Humble_Scarcity1195
“NTA. I really hated this fundraising sh*t as a kid.” ~ Pleasant-Plastic7096
“Agreed. I remember when I was forced to ask strangers for money and being extremely introverted it was hell on earth for me. If I had a dad who could have bailed me out, it would have been nice.”
“The best part is they used to give prizes to the kid who sold the most stuff and I could never compete against this one kid whose parents used to buy everything because they were rich.” ~ h3llios
“NTA. We don’t go door knocking. I hate getting kids knocking on the door, I always feel bad because I never have cash.”
“I’ll take a box to my work and co-workers buy what they want. Sometimes, hubby does the same if he remembers.”
“We normally buy a box and my mum will normally buy a box. That’s it.” ~ CrabbiestAsp
“NTA. That time is better spent doing something fun with your kid, rather than try to guilt-trip your neighbors into buying overpriced sweets.” ~ HoldFastO2
“NTA. I hated selling chocolate around houses as a kid. Why does your wife care how the fundraising goal is met?”
“You value your time enough to pay the required amount for the chocolate.” ~ Maximum-Ear1745
“NTA. Everyone I know that has to do this kind of thing pays for the box, takes the box to work, puts an envelope in it for the honour system, and eats whatever loss there is.”
“I’m not going to go out and annoy people hustling to sell almonds.” ~ Natural_Garbage7674
A handful of people thought the OP was the a**hole (YTA), though.
“This can be a valuable teaching moment. Walk your kid around, help him learn to make eye contact, stick out his hand, and talk with adults about a business deal.”
“Help him learn how to follow through by keeping records, placing an order and delivering them. YTA.” ~ IGotFancyPants
“Yes, you are the A**HOLE, a huge one at that! It’s your kid!!! Your valuable free should be spent with your family A-HOLE.”
“Damn, spend some time with the kid, just the 2 of you, have some fun, and make some memories. It won’t kill you. Don’t be a prick while out with the kid either.”
“When I was a kid it was fun being out with just the 2 of us, but I had to cut Dad out; he was cutting into the snacks I would get out of folks and he would want to be part of any small talk I would have with a customer after the sale.” ~ Lost-n-Space
“YTA. You have better things to do for a few hours … than parent your child?”
“The almonds are an opportunity to teach your child work/reward for the first time. And you’d rather just hand over the money.”
“Something tells me that your kid is the kind who acts terribly at restaurants and instead of teaching manners, you use an iPad. Because parenting is hard, and you don’t feel like making an effort.”
“YTA, and a subpar parent. Your wife is your kid’s only hope.” ~ suchalittlejoiner
But people rebuffed those opinions.
“NTA, ignore the Y T A idiots.”
“I also work a lot, and using the little quality time I have with my son for running from door to door and bothering people would also be VERY low on the list of things I would like to do.”
“You were absolutely right. Improve your position by pledging to do something ELSE with your kid.” ~ elcaron
Most adults in the United States endured at least one fundraiser as a kid.
I haven’t met anyone with fond memories of them or who gained lifelong skills from this valuable teaching moment.
I’m 100% team “just buy the almonds” and let your kid skip this pointless activity.