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Teen Balks After Being Criticized For Not Wanting To Meet Cheating Dad’s New Baby

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Sometimes it’s all too easy for parents to forget that their actions have major impacts on their kids’ lives. A teenager on Reddit found themself in this situation when their cheating dad was unable to understand why they didn’t want to meet the baby he’d just had with his girlfriend.

They weren’t sure about how they handled the situation, so they went to the AITA (Am I The A**hole) subReddit for perspective.

The Original Poster (OP), who goes by marshmellowmeme on the site, asked:

“AITA for not wanting to meet my dad’s new baby?”

They explained:

“I need help here, I’m 16 and when I was 13 my dad left my mum. I’m still recovering from the effects of that as it effected me a lot more severely due to other issues in my childhood.”

“I don’t have the greatest relationship with my dad due to him cheating on my mother before he left as well as him being overall emotionally neglectful. Last year I was starting to win my battle with deppresion until he told me his girlfriend was pregnant. This sent me spiralling again and I’m still in a bad place.”

“I know my dad wants me to meet his baby who was born last December as well as develop a good relationship with his girlfriend but I don’t feel ready.”

“Everyone always says ‘it’s not the babies fault’ and I wish they’d understand that I know however it’s hard not to be upset at the concept of my dad having a new family at all.”

“I feel like the people around me aren’t respecting my boundaries especially my brother and dad who get genuinely mad at me over not wanting to. But I don’t know so am I the a**hole?”

People on Reddit were then asked to judge who is in the wrong in this situation based on the following categories:

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

And most agreed, OP has every right to feel the way they feel.

“NTA. Your dad does have a ton of nerve for being mad at YOU.”curlytomato

“Yeah, like. It’s not the baby’s fault, but it’s also not OP’s fault.”Neurotic_Bakeder

“YOU’RE 16! Come on! You’re still learning coping skills. NTA!!! I’m sorry for your situation.”QCr8onQ

“It’s absolutely not the baby’s fault. But the baby is a baby and won’t remember that you didn’t immediately establish a relationship from infancy onward. It’s not like you can’t change your mind any time within the next 3-4 years and establish a relationship before the kid even forms memories.”

“Your father did something horrible to your family and this baby is now an unfortunate symbol of that for you, fair or unfair. Refusing to meet the baby isn’t taking it out on the baby. The baby isn’t owed a relationship with you. NTA.”AlleyKatArt

“‘The baby isn’t owed a relationship with you.'”

“Same goes for the girlfriend and Dad. People asking you to appease Dad or Brother (or Baby) over getting yourself in a good place are not worth having in your close ring of people to support you until they can prioritize your well being.”

“Edit: NTA.”snarfblattinconcert

“NTA – Calmly say you will not meet the baby until he’s old enough to be understand how much your dad having sex with his mother ruined your life. If you are forced to meet him, pick him up with love and tell him in a sweet voice all the bad things your dad did to you and your mom, and how he’s got *that* to look forward to when your dad meets wife number three. You’ll never be allowed to go near him again because dad’s second wife will blow a head valve.”Whoreson_Welles

“NTA – it’s not the baby’s fault but it IS your Dad’s fault, and he’s the only person he’s thinking of.”

“The baby will be fine not knowing you for a few years – or ever. this isn’t about him. this is about your Dad trying to improve his reputation so he doesn’t look like a child-abandoning garbage pile (he is) and maybe getting some free babysitting out of you.”bob_the_driver

“NTA. It’s ok to have boundaries. It’s not the babies fault but it’s not your fault either. There’s a million and one different ways your dad could have left without having a negative impact on those around him (or minimizing it) and he chose not to do it.”

“You’re putting together the pieces of yourself that he helped break. There’s no set timeline when that has to happen or when you have to feel prepared enough to meet his new family.”octop-hi

“NTA -“

“Some people are not going to respect what you want. That is okay. Be respectful to them anyways because that is the kind of person you are, and stand your ground.”

“Personally my dad remarried and had a kid. Don’t have a relationship with half-siblings, step-mother, or him. Zero regrets, and best choice for me.”

“Divorce is a nasty thing, I’m sorry you have to experience it. But you shouldn’t have to add to the suffering. It is OKAY if you need a break from your dad. Actions have consequences. He may not like them, but he has to adapt.”K_DeSinaasappelen

“NTA.”

“Your right, it’s not the baby’s fault, but it’s not yours either. We don’t choose mental health problems, they affect us in different ways at the worst possible time.”

“Your doing well to acknowledge there an issue and I hope you’re getting the right support and help going forward.”

“I can’t speak to the issues with how your parents split, unfortunately (and it’s something you see/ learn about as you get older), but they’re are always two sides. Regardless, it’s not fair on any children who are caught in that mess.”

“You’ll meet your sibling when the time is right, your dad needs to respect that and stop pushing, because all that will do is cause resentment.”countingpickles

Hopefully OP’s family can learn to better respect their boundaries.

Written by John Sundholm

John Sundholm is a writer, content producer and performer originally from Michigan. His writing has also appeared on YourTango, Delish and Medium, and he has produced content for NBC, The New York Times and The CW, among others. When not working, he can be found tripping over his own feet on a hiking trail while singing Madonna songs to ward off lurking bears.