Losing a family member can be one of the most difficult events to experience. It’s made all the worse if it’s a close parent and you’re still young.
Adjusting to such a massive change is not something that happens quickly, if at all. And time and care needs to be given to those affected.
Reddit user Quiet_Lif_1925 has experienced this painful event and her family is struggling to handle it. However, her dad has grounded her so she’s wondering if she did something wrong.
So the original poster (OP) is asking Reddit’s “Am I the A**hole” board if she was right to feel her feelings.
“AITA for telling my dad his decision to move on fast is the reason we feel the way we do?”
Her post reads:
“Hi guys. Me (15f) and my brother (17m) lost our mom 8 years ago. Our dad remarried six months after her death.”
“We both found it really hard to come to terms with and I’ll admit we have been very cold and sometimes mean because of it. Our dad just moved on and he expected us to move on after six months”
“It’s been a pretty s***ty few years for us. And earlier this year our dad decided we all needed family therapy and so we ended up there… and my brother doesn’t want to talk.”
“He sits and says nothing the whole time but the therapist a few weeks ago (back in early October) asked me if I was willing to talk and so I did.”
“I said my brother and I were angry our dad remarried after six months. That he and his wife thought six month was enough for us to come to terms with our moms loss and be ready for someone new living with us and trying to parent us.”
“I said the fact they never saw anything wrong with it made us dislike them both and that the reason neither of us bonded with the new members of our family was we were still really angry and hurt about it and no matter how long has since passed, it doesn’t erase what happened. I also said it was insulting to us that they thought she would be our new mom and that we would love her the same especially after the way they made everything happened when they moved so fast.”
“My dad asked if I loved my stepmom now and I said no. My brother didn’t answer the question.”
“He then asked why we were still holding onto it after so long. I told him because he might have needed to move fast for him but he did so at our expense and that was not something we could just forget about or get over like it didn’t matter.”
“Things have been tense since. My brother is grounded for not opening up and I was grounded for being rude.”
“The therapist knows all this and has asked if we wanted to do individual sessions but our dad’s wife said no. Then my dad said we’re doing it as a family so we can be a family.”
A number of commenters asked similar questions, so OP’s post was updated with some additional information about her situation.
“Just adding some notes here because some things were asked multiple times.”
“My mom’s death was sudden (car accident).”
“I am pretty sure there was no affair but I can’t say for sure. We believe they met at work after my mom died (my dad went back a week after she died and a couple of days after that he mentioned a new co-worker).”
“We found them in bed together a month after my mom died. We think it was a ONS. That then became more because a month later she was introduced to us as his girlfriend and she was unemployed and he mentioned just before that the new co-worker left.”
The comments pass judgement in a few ways.
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
The comments overwhelmingly voted that OP was NTA.
“NTA, this is made especially clear by the fact that you got grounded for what you said IN THERAPY.” – NannyBismo
“NTA but wow, your dad is. 6 months is crazy fast, and therapy should be a safe space, the fact that you’re grounded for being rude and your brother is grounded for not opening up speaks volumes. I’m sorry you’re going through this.” – mokomaster
“So OP gets in trouble for talking about *her feelings and *her brother gets in trouble for not talking about his feelings… it’s like no matter what these kids lose. NTA but the dad sure is” – Rat_Kin
“How were you rude? You were encouraged to open up and you did.”
“If they didn’t like hearing it, they shouldn’t have tried therapy at all. Looks like your dad thinks you guys need therapy, not he or his wife.”
“Maybe he thinks you’re harboring some kind of juvenile resentment? idk”
“NTA” – kwadd
Other commenters questioned the actions of the dad.
“6 months is “were they having an affair before mom died” fast” – wrosmer
“I wouldn’t go that far. Some people marry fast, especially if they need a wife to do basic household things that they don’t want to do. They’d settle fast and they’d settle for anyone. I’ve seen it happen.” – ThrowAwayPregnant111
“Read me. Your father choose her as his family but you don’t have to choose her too.”
“She’s not your blood and if you don’t feel attached to her is ok, no one can force you or your brother, you too are enough family to each other, stay by your brother side and be the best person to him.” – UnhappyAndPoor
“This is kind of what we have done. Except for the limited contact with our extended family we are there for each other.”
“I’m going to lose him in March when he leaves and never looks back at our dad. I would go with him if I could but I have a bad feeling that my punishment will be my dad cutting me off from my brother.” – Quiet_Lif_1925
Therapy works best when people can be honest. Shutting that down with a threat of punishment is going to stall any progress.
Separate sessions would maybe be best, but it sounds like dad doesn’t want that either. He may need to reassess what he’s going to therapy for if he doesn’t want his children to express themselves.