How far is too far when responding to somebody who delivers a hateful attack against one’s child?
A recent post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit explored that dynamic.
The Original Poster (OP), known as Mammoth_Bit_1029 on the site, penned a title that included their own response.
“AITA for telling my grandmother she won’t go to heaven?”
OP led with the tragic backstory.
“Almost a year ago, my [37-years-old] daughter [14-years-old] passed away. It’s been devastating.”
“Before she passed, she had become active in supporting lgbtq movement and had even questioned her own gender identity.”
“At the time of her passing she had said she/her pronouns were ok.”
One person in particular struggled with all of that.
“At the funeral, my ex spoke and he referred to our daughter as his son.”
This upset my 73 year old grandmother. She kept leaning over me and loudly whispering that she was to walk out.”
“She did walk out and caused a scene. I quit talking to her after that.”
Then came the relevant incident.
“May was my daughter’s birthday.”
“My grandmother, mom, sister, brother-in-law, niece, and nephews went to the cemetery for the birthday.”
“My daughter’s friends have been leaving little things at the grave. One thing left was a rainbow flag.”
Grandma, however, had other plans.
“My grandmother yanked the flag out. My sister wrestled the flag back but it was broken in the process. There was a blow up and my grandmother left abruptly.”
“When I found out, I was very upset. I texted all involved that removing things is desecration and I had alerted the maintenance people know so they watch it.”
“I also told my daughter’s friends to let me know if anything went missing.”
OP couldn’t believe what happened next.
“My grandmother texted back that she was praying for me and my ex. That the only person she owed an explanation was my daughter.”
“She said she’d tell her when she faces her in heaven.”
“I told her people that desecrate a child’s grave does not go to heaven.”
“I’m agnostic and grandmother is super religious.”
Ever since, OP’s been forced to turn it over in her mind.
“My sister and mom say I took it too far. Out of fairness I know I’m overly sensitive to anything about my daughter but I felt justified. It was disrespectful. So AITA?”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Most Redditors were on OP’s side completely.
They couldn’t believe the grandmother’s behavior.
“I’m sorry for your loss. Initially I wanted to say E S H, because it certainly was a harsh thing to say as religion seems important to her. Presumably your grandmother believes the life she leads and choices she makes are to ultimately get to heaven.”
“This is where I’m going NTA. This is ridiculous, your grandmother (or anyone for that matter) needs to stop using religion to be the AH. She can believe in God, Allah, a Flying Spaghetti Monster or whatever she would like, but nothing gives her the right to metaphorically spit in your face by walking out of a funeral or desecrating your daughters grave.”
“Yes it was harsh, but until we as a society stop pandering to religion being used as a cover for hate, it will never stop. May your daughter Rest In Peace and you find a way to reconcile with your family.” — TexanFirebird
“NTA. Your grandmother should process the fact that you are in 2021 and not 1937.” — morpheusbtw
“First of all. I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot imagine what you are going through. You are NTA. Grandma did exactly what you said she did. It was disrespectful, it was hurtful and it was so unnecessary. She has some nerve throwing her religion around for justification of her atrocious behavior.”
“I don’t think you went to far turning it around on her but I am a petty vengeful woman I would have scorched and salted the earth. No one gets to mess with the memories or the grave of your daughter. No, you are absolutely in the right and I recommend this as THE hill to die on.” — Expensive_Fee696
Others through the book at grandma.
“Jesus spread a message of love and tolerance. He washed the feet of prostitutes. He said let he who is without sin cast the first stone, do onto others as you would do onto yourself and that children will inherit the kingdom of God. At no point did he say that it was a sin to be gay or gender fluid.”
“At its core christianity is a peaceful religion which has been corrupted by power hungry men and women.”
“Your grandmothers actions could not take her further from the word of God. Tell her that.I am so sorry for your loss. NTA.” — WirelessThingy
“NTA. She is acting opposite the teaching of her own religion (assuming by ‘religious’ you mean some flavor of Christianity), considering Jesus’s core message was love and acceptance. By her own religion, she is setting herself up to go to hell.”
“I’m pretty sure ‘treat others as you want to be treated’ is more key to getting into Christian heaven than ‘actively express hate for your own family because you don’t agree with something they are.’ ” — WanderingAl08
“NTA. You didn’t condemn her to hell, you just said that people who desecrate a child’s grave do not go to heaven. It’s up to grandma whether she admits she was wrong and apologizes.”
“As a Christian who DOES believe in heaven and hell, I assure you that none of us get to say who goes where, it’s all up to the individual to live their life in a way that gets them to their preferred destination.” — twizzlerbreath
“NTA Jeez! Jesus said Love everyone! EVERYONE! I apologize if bigoted grandma is not christian or catholic, there are nutjobs in every religion but this sounds very extremist christian.”
“So sorry for your loss. You didn’t said anything that wasn’t true.” — SoulMoony
Unfortunately for OP, not everyone felt as the Redditors did, as an edit to the original post explained.
“I just want to thank everyone. August 7 will be one year since my daughter passed away.”
“It’s a very hard time and my family drama hasn’t helped. I do not have any contact with my grandmother.”
“I told my mom to quit trying to manipulate me into forgiving or I’d cut her out, too.”
“Sadly, it cost me my niece and nephews. My sister had cut all contact with me.”
For OP, overcoming that has been a tall task.
“Honestly, that’s fine. I can’t handle the stress.”
“It’s so hard to lose a child and then be let down by the people who are supposed to support you.”
“So thank you for the peace of mind.”