in ,

Redditor Livid After Stepdad Berates Them For Not Mentioning Him In Eulogy For Deceased Brother

RichLegg/Getty Images

We all know at least one person who loves to be the center of attention.

That person who does better than everyone else, the person who has it harder than everyone else, the one who is suddenly best friends with the person who passed away…

But one person took attention-seeking to a whole other level on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor Community399 wrote a eulogy for their brother’s funeral and was very surprised by how their stepfather reacted to it.

After seeing his reaction, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if they were wrong for what they wrote.

They asked the sub:

“AITA for publicly telling my stepdad to f**k off after he complained about being excluded from the speech I wrote for my brother’s funeral?”

The OP struggled with their relationship with their stepdad. 

“My stepdad is an attention-seeking person. Did I say attention-seeking? As the saying goes, ‘he is the bride/groom at every wedding and the corpse at every funeral.’

“He can’t help himself and has no issue showing how much he craves attention.”

“I’ve never been on good terms with him.”

“He sold my childhood home and threw away stuff dad left for me and my brother who’s 19. He convinced mom to revoke my college fund and use it to renovate their new house resulting in me moving out at 17, I’m now 26.”

The OP’s brother’s relationship with the stepdad was no better. 

“My brother was still living with them when he passed. He suffered from physical/mental conditions that my stepdad called ‘fake.’

“My brother was diagnosed with a stomach illness that landed him in the hospital few times, but my stepdad insisted he was ‘faking it to get attention’ and so didn’t help with money, so mom ended up selling jewelry to help my brother. Then he passed away 2 months later.”

The OP wrote a eulogy for their brother’s funeral. 

“The funeral was last week. I was so devastated because I’ve always been close with my brother and had plans to do so much in the future.”

“But going by my uncle’s advice, I decided to write a speech. sort of like a goodbye letter to my brother as a closure for me, because I had so much to say but so little time.”

“I gave the speech at the funeral. Those moments felt long and pretty heavy. I went back to sit and had people pat on my shoulder trying to comfort me.”

The stepdad did not appreciate it. 

“But my stepdad approached me and openly asked why I didn’t mention him anywhere in my long, detailed speech.”

“I was speechless and enraged by his offending question.”

“I literally said, ‘I don’t know, because you’re not the one who’s dead?'”

“He replied that technically, the funeral is for the living and then casually went on about how I should’ve mentioned some of the impact and benefits he had on me and my brother when he came into our life.”

“I harshly reminded him how my mom started selling her jewelry to pay for my brother’s medication while all he did was claim my brother was faking being sick to get attention.”

“I called him pathetic for wanting more attention at the funeral than the departed person and loudly told him to f**k off with his pathetic, attention-seeking bulls**t.”

“He looked shocked and saw a number of guests looking at him awkwardly.”

The stepdad and OP continued to argue.

“He argued that I was being utterly disrespectful of him and that he was generous enough to consider getting my brother a decent headstone but it wasn’t his fault that I refused to have his name on it (my brother and I never changed our last name and my stepdad somehow wanted his name on my brother’s headstone, otherwise he wouldn’t pay for it).”

“It turned into an argument and I demanded he leave and got others involved.”

“He left eventually but kept telling my whole family about me making a scene and humiliating him out of old spite and that I was inconsiderate enough of my brother to cause a scene at his funeral. Basically turning the family against me.”

“He wants at least a written apology so we could move past this, but I refused to give him one.”

“Mom wants me to do it as soon as possible.”

Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some recommended going low-to-no-contact with the stepdad and mother.

“NTA. At this point, I wouldn’t apologize to him. I would also look at going LC to NC. I’m sorry for the loss of your brother. I can’t imagine how painful that is. I wouldn’t want to be around him anymore or your mother. She continues to allow his behavior and at this point maybe it’s better to move on.”Allalngthewatchtwer

“As narcissistic, selfish, and cruel as step-dad was/is, ‘Mom’ allowed and condoned him treating her children that way at every step. She is just as responsible.”Fiotes

“Mom is 10/10 an enabler. I’m so sorry for your loss OP.”

“I have a twin and 2 other siblings. I start to sob whenever a dark thought of them passing comes up so I can’t even imagine the pain and sorrow you are feeling.”

“Step-dad makes me so mad. He shouldn’t have said anything. If anything, he should have kept his mouth shut and complain at home, instead of disrespecting both brothers at the funeral.”

“(I guess the mom should get a little bit of sympathy because she’s just lost her son but only a little because she ALLOWS and ENABLES that type of behavior from her husband.)”Miss_Biss64840

Others said the OP was absolutely not wrong to speak up.

“NTA in any way, shape, or form. I’m so sorry for the loss of your brother.”AppropriateCupcake48

“There’s no debate here, the stepfather is way out of line on pretty much everything. (Not paying for the gravestone unless his own name is on it? WTF?)”Ok-Statistician233

“My condolence on the loss of your brother, and apparent congratulations on the well-deserved loss of a stepfather – cut him out of your life and let your mother know you’ll be there for her if she ever decides to leave him – but until then, goodbye and good luck.”Fraerie

One Redditor detailed what to include in an apology letter. 

“I think OP SHOULD write him an apology letter ASAP. In it, OP can give their utmost sincerest feelings. Here. I’ll even help with the wording.”

“‘Dear *Stepdad*, I am SO sorry that I didn’t mention you in my brother’s eulogy. You are right. I should have. I should have explained to everyone how you affected our lives by selling our childhood home and the things our father left us.'”

“‘How you stopped me from going to college and drove me out of the house and away from my brother when I was only 17, leaving me unable to protect him from your future medical neglect of him.'”

“‘I should have let them know that my brother might still be alive today had you not brushed off his serious medical conditions for so long and even forced my mother to have to sell jewelry just so he could get a little bit of medical care much too late to make a difference.'”

“‘Yes. I should have mentioned all of that in my eulogy and I will forever regret it. But I chose to act with tact and decency out of respect for my brother’s memory.'”

“‘But don’t worry. I can make up for it now and revise the speech and send it to everyone who was at the funeral and let them know that I am doing so at YOUR request. Then you can have all the attention that you so desire.'”

“And NTA”SayerSong

The mother and a few others may have sided with the stepdad, but the subReddit was behind the OP all the way.

Not only should the stepdad have not expected to be the center of attention in someone else’s eulogy, but if an apology letter was coming, it certainly wouldn’t be the kind of letter he was after.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives in North Chicago, where she works as a poet, freelance writer, and editor. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, and her BA in English from Indiana University South Bend. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Thank You for Swallowing, and elsewhere; and her essays and book reviews have appeared with Memoir Mixtapes, The Rumpus, BookPage, and Motherly, among others. When she's not reading and writing, she's in her garden or spending time with her family. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com.