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Mom At A Loss After Teen Son Makes 8-Year-Old Sisters Sick By Feeding Them Peanut Butter

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*The following article contains discussion of sexual assault

Sudden behavioral changes can stem from something else going on.

When trauma occurs, children especially can act out instead of disclosing their trauma.

That can lead to misunderstandings.

Case in point…

Redditor tthrowaway16__ wanted to discuss her experience with her children and get some feedback. So she came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

She asked:

“AITA for telling my son I can’t trust him?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“I have 3 kids.”

“A 15 year old son and 8 year old twin daughters.”

“They all get along well and my son loves his sisters and vice versa.”

“Sometimes my husband and I have to go to certain events and I ask my son if he can watch his sisters for the night.”

“He usually says yes unless he has plans (I just ask my mom then).”

“So on Friday night we had an event to go to and I again asked my son if he’d be willing to babysit.”

“He said sure and that was it.”

“We came back at around midnight and I went to check on the kids and my son was fast asleep while one of the twins was puking her guts out and the other one was crying.”

“I was surprised but I also didn’t really blame my son in any way.”

“They weren’t really making any noise and were clearly asleep before all hell broke loose.”

“Well I managed to calm my girls down and they end up telling me how their big brother was really mean and grumpy all day.”

“And when they asked for food he gave them a jar of peanut butter.”

“The twins cannot have peanut butter (they aren’t allergic but it makes them ill).”

“The girls know as well but they were hungry and he said they HAD to eat it.”

“My son knows this and the peanut butter is kept out of the twins sight and reach and is literally only in the house for him.”

“I woke him up the next morning and asked him if all this was true.”

“He just made a noise and was all like ‘the little snitches… yeah so they had a little peanut butter what’s the big deal?’.”

“I told him that he knows they can’t have it and not only that but I also don’t like how they described his attitude.”

“Especially when he told them they had to eat it.”

“He just told me to stop overthinking.”

“He forgot peanut butter makes them that sick.”

“He only said they had to eat it because he didn’t want them going hungry, he didn’t feel like ordering, cooking or warming up leftovers either and also the twins were being annoying.”

“I told him that these excuses are not good enough and that what he did was honestly kind of cruel.”

“I told him that I don’t know if I can trust him with the girls anymore as well.”

“He just rolled his eyes and told me that I’m being really f**king dramatic and that the twins will be fine.”

“I don’t need to act like this.”

“He’s really upset with me and every time me or his dad say anything, he’ll just reply with ‘oh I thought I was cruel? I thought you couldn’t trust me?’.”

“My sister told me to post on here since I’m so conflicted.”

“Didn’t think it would hurt.”

“He’s not budging and he’s not normally like this.”

“So I’m wondering AITA?”

Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.

“NTA. If this had been someone other than your son, I’d be calling it abuse and assault.”

“Certainly negligent. He is clearly unreliable and I’d be very upset.”

“The fact you let your son talk to you in such a manner is alarming as well.” ~ Karate-Chop-SR

“Yes blatant disrespect!!”

“Hopefully he has some actual consequences.”

“If he didn’t want to babysit he should have talked to his parents, not acted so childish, cruel and disrespectful to them or his little sisters.”

“He would have been woken up way before morning too to discuss all this!” ~ bromley325

“In my family, anyone pulling such a stunt would be grounded for a month at the very least and be on a very short leash from then on.”

“As others pointed out, this kind of behaviour from anyone else like a babysitter would be considered negligent at best.”

“Knowing that the son knew that the twins couldn’t eat peanut butter, and he let them starve just because the kids were being ‘annoying’ is downright abusive.”

“He clearly cannot be trusted with them.”

“That he acted like an uncaring jerk when called out on it is alarming.” ~ aksnitd


“OP NTA, but honestly kind of YTA for having to post on this subReddit to ask if you are one.”

“I really do not understand why you are worried that you may be ‘dramatic’ and that your son is ‘really upset’ with you.”

“Come on OP, you are 100% right that your son was cruel and unkind and that you shouldn’t trust him.”

“Now please impose some actual consequences without doubting yourself.”  ~ EmeraldBlueZen

“NTA. He needs a therapist.”

“Cruelty without remorse isn’t normal.”

“Possible guesses- he’s been through a recent trauma.”

“He has a new addiction (video games, [or drugs, or alcohol, or insert your fav here] for example).”

“He has executive dysfunction (i.e. his brain wouldn’t let him make/order food) and is lying to cover up for it.”

“That last one’s a little out there, granted, but I mention it just in case.” ~ Impossible-Pause3788

“NTA… but I’m concerned about all the kids involved here.”

“Has there been a sharp change in his behavior recently?”

“Is there possibly a need of his that’s not being met?”

“Perhaps he feels like the twins are getting preferential treatment?”

“I’d explore that route first. Something is not right if he’s all of a sudden causing intentional harm to his younger siblings.”

“Keep the younger one’s safe and have a real talk with the older one.”

“If he’s not willing to talk to you, take him to a professional.” ~ SophiaRaine69420

“NTA- ah your son is hitting that teenage phase where he’s just arbitrarily being an a**hole.”

“No, what he did WAS cruel and honestly a little punishment should be in order.”

“If he’s taken care of his sisters before and KNOWS how to do so responsibly, then he was absolutely out of line forcing them to eat something that would make them sick.” ~ Baileythenerd

OP had an update…

“First I’m sorry if I make mistakes or if I don’t make sense.”

“I’m in shock and I’ve been crying for hours.”

“My sister reminded me of my post and then suggested quickly writing an update to help myself process the situation.”

“Like I said, I talked to my son, just him and I.”

“He implied that something happened to him and seemed really nervous.”

“His hands were shaking, he couldn’t keep eye contact etc…”

“He said that he’ll tell me once dad comes home because he doesn’t know if he can muster up the courage to say it again.”

“This concerned me a lot.”

“I was hoping that it was girl problems and now that I know what it was, I wish it was him feeling like he babysits too much like many of you guys suggested.”

“His dad came home and we put the girls to bed.”

“Then we sat down to talk.”

“He then told us what happened.”

“I’m being vague on purpose but I have never seen my husband cry and what our son told us was enough to break us both.”

“My son began to just say whatever came into his mind and said that he had interacted with the person that inflicted harm upon him earlier that day and was in a very off mood.”

“Anything the twins did made him angry.”

“And then they asked for food but he was in a bad mood so he offered them fruit and quick and easy junk food I had mentioned we had but they refused to eat it.”

“He said that he suddenly felt as if he was back where the bad thing happened to him and he ended up telling them that he was going to give them peanut butter for being annoying.”

“The same way that person did something to him for being disruptive and annoying.”

“He told me they were hesitant but they ate it so as to not make him angrier and when he snapped back to reality he got nervous and made them promise not to tell.”

“The girls then said something which put him back in that bad place but he managed to go into his room before he did anything else.”

“He said he was really, really sorry and that he’s really scared because he can feel himself turning into the person that did that to him.”

“He said that he doesn’t know why he yelled at me so much and he just would not stop crying.”

“We comforted him and he ended up falling asleep.”

“I’ll be honest though, I’m scared.”

“His behavior changes are making sense now but I never thought that person would do such a thing to my baby.”

“My poor son who was so f**king scared.”

“We’re going to get a lawyer and again, being vague on purpose but my husband is determined to put that sick disgusting human away.”

“We’ll also be getting therapy for my son.”

“I was going to talk about some things you guy mentioned but I don’t know if I can write anymore.”

“I’m exhausted.”

“Just know that I took everything into consideration.”

“My son won’t be babysitting for a while due to his mental health.”

“Not because I don’t trust him but because of his own fear.”

“I’ll also be booking a doctor’s appointment to figure out the girls problem with peanuts.”

“Also parents, please keep in mind that although it’s true that teens can be massive jerks, big changes don’t occur simply due to puberty.”

“There is always a bigger reason.”

“Bullying, peer pressure, drugs, sexual abuse, etc…”

“Anything is possible.”

“It’s easy to think that things can’t happen to your children but look at where that left me.”

“I thought my kids would be safe.”

“We live in the safest neighborhood and my kids are growing up with lots of privileges many can only dream of.”

“Yet my son was still hurt.”

“By an adult we all trusted.”

“Don’t make my mistake, teach your kids to say no and scream for help.”

“Tell them that NO ONE has the right to their bodies.”

“Tell your sons that it CAN happen to them.”

“I know it’s hard but it’s a lot harder to hear your child cry because it happened.”

“I didn’t think my post would get any attention but maybe it was for the better, at least now people know what can happen to their children.”

“My son is 6ft tall and has the build of a true hockey player and it happened to him.”

“He’s not shy and is never afraid to speak his mind, but he still kept it a secret.”

“Don’t make my mistakes.”

“If I don’t respond to any more comments, please excuse me.”

“I only wrote this because my husband is taking a shower, my children are asleep and I can’t stand being alone with my thoughts right now.”

“Again, I appreciated all the comments, even the ones criticizing my parenting.”

It’s good to know Reddit was helpful in some way.

The OP and her family are not alone.


If you or someone you know experienced sexual assault, help is out there. You can reach the RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline by calling 1-800-656-4673, use their Live Chat tool:, or visit the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.

In Canada, help is available through the Ending Violence Association of Canada website.

International resources can be found through the Rape Crisis Network Europe website.