Who we are is a combination of many different aspects. But, our culture and where we come from is an integral part of our identity.
And language is a huge aspect of culture. So, when someone says you can’t speak your own language, it can be heartbreaking.
Redditor 281927 encountered this very issue with her son. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for asking my son on my parents’ behalf to stop speaking his native language?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I am originally from Egypt but moved to Sweden after I accidentally became pregnant while on vacation several years back.”
“My parents were enraged at the news since I wasn’t married to the father of my child so I decided to separate from then and moved to Sweden and married my husband, we now have a son (15) and our cat.”
“I recently convinced my husband and son to move to Egypt and things have been a little rough.”
“Our son has been fighting left and right. One of the main reasons I wanted to move back was because my parents and I have made peace, but they do not want any Swedish spoken in their presence as it isn’t ‘their’ language.”
OP’s son doesn’t think he should stop speaking his first language.
“My son knows Arabic as a second language but he refuses to speak it when he doesn’t have to, instead speaking in Swedish for most of the time.”
“My parents have told me they don’t like it and I don’t like it either, I find it disrespectful and I feel like Sweden isn’t part of our lives anymore, so I asked my son if he could stop speaking the language, at least so constantly.”
“He called me an a**hole and hasn’t spoken to me. I don’t want to involve my husband because he’s been very stressed lately.”
“I hope someone sees my point of view.”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors agreed OP was the a**hole.
“This may be the post that earns AH of the week.”
“Sweden is all your son has ever known. That’s his entire life that you just upended to please your honestly awful parents. Saying that ‘Sweden isn’t part of our lives anymore’ is horrid. The world doesn’t revolve around you and your desires.”
“You sound like a narcissistic parent based on those comments and your complete disregard for your son’s emotional state. YTA.” ~ heathahR
“Exactly this. Sweden may no longer be part of your life but it is very much your sons life. It is all he has known until you persuaded your family to move to please your parents who has suddenly had a change of heart and want to know you.” ~ Union-Opening
“Sweden will also be part of her life in the future – her husband is Swedish! Unless they fully cut contact with his family and all friends from the past 16 years…” ~ Schlumpfine25
“He is still a Swedish citizen, right? I mean, worst case scenario he becomes an adult and can go back home…his real home.” ~ LilithNoctis
“Exactly. OP forced her son to move away from the only home he knew and is now trying to force him to stop speaking HIS NATIVE LANGUAGE. Just because it makes her mommy and daddy upset.”
“I feel so bad for the poor kid. This is the most obvious YTA I’ve seen in a long time.”
“So we know OP forced her husband and child to leave their home country. We know OP forced them to move back to her home country because mommy and daddy love her again, even though they disowned her for getting pregnant. Now she wants to force her husband and child to stop speaking their native language because it makes her mommy and daddy upset.”
“So. Are you ashamed that your husband is Swedish? Are you ashamed of your half Swedish child? Are you really that desperate for mommy and daddy to love you? Do you really think they like your husband? Or love your child?”
“Your parents hate that they speak their first language, so now you do too. Grow up and crawl out of your parents ass already, it’s almost 2022 ffs.” ~ an_angry_biscuit
Some think this might push her son away.
“Pretty sure Sweden will be her son’s entire life when he escapes her in 2-3 years.” ~ East_Television_1025
“This. Completely this.”
“OP you need to really analyze the damage you’re doing to your relationship with your son.” ~ WhatThis4
“This is definitely an issue. The German foreign ministry has an explicit warning about this on their page about parental consent when moving out of Egypt.”
“I’d also be worried about the son having to join the Egyptian army.”
“My husband is Egyptian, I’m German. Our kids have citizenship of both countries. We have two sons and we’re worried, about them having to serve in the military or not being able to visit Egypt.”
“It’s still many years for our kids, but this would be a reason for us to revoke their Egyptian citizenship.”
“Also YTA, we’re both invested in bringing Egyptian, specifically Coptic culture to our children, including Arabic, even though my husband is not fond of the language. Because it is still an integral part of who they are.” ~ Suspicious_Builder62
Some were also wondering where her husband stood.
“OP mentioned that her husband has seemed stressed lately. I wonder if it has anything to do with “Sweden not being a part of their life anymore”. Massive YTA.” ~ Caveman_frozenintime
“Presumably he’s grown up there, so that’s not just his first fifteen years but his whole adult life with parents, job, friends etc, now somewhere he must be facing immense culture shock all to make his wife happy and she doesn’t seem to show any gratitude for it. Just ‘please do not speak the language you have spoken your whole life, around my parents.'” ~ ScorchieSong
“Imagine putting your parents above your husband and son. Newsflash OP: You aren’t spending the rest of your life with your parents.” ~ jr_xo
“Does OP never plan to go back to visit? Never follow a Swedish tradition? Never wear clothes that they bought in Sweden? Never listen to Swedish music? Never talk about their life there? Because Sweden will forever be a part of the family.” ~ Glittering_knave
“Doesn’t sound like the word please was involved. Got the husband and son mine gone from this toxic crap. So many people type their kids/spouses aside because mommy and daddy will suddenly approve if they do.”
“OP, YTA.” ~ CeelaChathArrna
Language is part of our identity.