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Mom Upset After Teen Triplets Suggest She Get Another Job To Pay For Separate Sweet 16 Parties

teenage triplet sisters
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The “sweet 16” party is a tradition observed in some countries. Most people attribute its origins to debutante parties that originated in the Victorian era.

The Sweet 16 party was a way to present a young woman to society in hopes of finding a suitable husband.

Today’s parties are no longer just for girls and no longer serve the same purpose.

Their modern popularity is also attributed to being an answer to the traditions of the bar mitzvah and bat mitzvah in Jewish culture and the quinceañera that has roots in Aztec culture.

The sweet 16 party has become a way for people not of those cultures to have a lavish party to celebrate an age-based milestone. The parties can be so over the top that MTV had a program—My Super Sweet 16—from 2005-2017 dedicated to showing how outrageous they could get.

But is a parent obligated to break the bank when their child hits that age?

What if they don’t have one child turning 16, but three?

A mother struggling to meet her triplets’ expectations turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for feedback.

Perfect_Phone9777 asked:

“AITA for forcing my daughters to share a birthday party?”

The original poster explained:

“I’m a single mom to 15-year-old triplet daughters. Usually, for birthdays, I give them $150 each to take their friends for dinner, and they go to different restaurants.”

“For their sweet 16, they want a big party with a DJ, a venue, and lots of invites.”

A venue would be around $500 and with all the additional things like decorations, DJ, invites and food it would be around $1,200-$1,400 and that’s the cheapest we can do.

“I can afford that once, but they want three individual parties, which would be over $4,000. I can’t really afford $4,000 for three birthday parties, so I told them no.”

“I could throw three smaller parties, but it would be a huge hassle deciding who gets to have the party on their actual birthday as I can’t plan 3 parties in one day and they have a lot of common family/friends.”

“I was willing to do it anyway, but a smaller party means no venue, no DJ, cheaper food and drinks and my daughters aren’t okay with that. I’ve tried explaining to them I can’t afford it, but they just told me to get an extra job.”

“One of them is mad they can’t have their own sweet 16s. I told them the budget was $1,200, and they could figure out how to spend it.”

“Should I get an extra job, AITA?”

The OP summed up their predicament.

“My daughters are calling me the a**hole for forcing them to share a birthday party. I feel I’m the a**hole as I’m not giving them their own party and forcing them to share one.”

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

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

Redditors decided the OP was not the a**hole (NTA).

“NTA, but you definitely f-ed up raising your daughters. How can you be THAT entitled? Even 1,200 bucks is a lot.”

“They are going to be 16, old enough to get a job. If they wanna spend more money than what you have, they should work for it. This is insane. I’m actually pissed off just by reading that.”

“I shouldn’t blame the mother for this. I can’t assume that she did anything wrong, sometimes you can do everything right and your kids can still turn out to be bad people.” ~ Avocado1403

“I don’t think my parents spent $1,200 in total for all our birthday parties, and I’m one of 6 kids. $1,200 for one party is f**king insane. NTA.” ~ KittikatB

“If the triplets want a huge party, then yeah they gotta share. I like that OP basically said ‘here’s the budget. You guys decide what’s more important because at that age, they need to learn that money doesn’t grow on trees.” ~ Cayachan82

“I had my 16th birthday at a local pizza joint in 1999. I had 1 friend, my siblings, parents, 2 cousins and grandparents show up. I got $10 for arcade games, and then contributing money towards videogames as my gifts.”

“NTA. But those kids of yours, OP, sure are. I’d tell them they get the group party, or they pay for it themselves.”

“I’d also tell them if they don’t stfu about you getting another job to afford their spoiled requests, then they get nothing at all. Tell them if it’s so easy, they can just go get a job themselves.” ~ NostalgiaDad

“I detassled corn for four years—between the ages of 12 to 16—until I was old enough to get a ‘real’ job. It is miserable, backbreaking work, but at least I was making my own money.”

“Seems as though kids these days don’t want to work and just want things handed to them. Mom is NTA, but would be if she gives in to her entitled daughters.” ~ Finn_704

“With their attitude—especially telling you to get an extra job—they would be getting nothing more than a $25 Amazon gift card from me.”

“They need an adjustment, and so do you. It’s time to shake out the door mat and stop letting them walk all over you.” ~ Mental-Coconut-7854

“Yeah, that’s the craziest part. There’s entitled brat tantrum, and then there’s ‘work yourself to the bone to pay for it, Mommy’. Whole new level. NTA.” ~ Snoo_31427

“NTA. ‘You either get one big party or none at all. It’s up to you three’.”

“That’s all you need to say—or tell them to get a job and pay for themselves. This is ridiculous and I’m angry on your behalf.” ~ ZeldaMayCry

“OK, I can see them wanting a big party, but I can also see the three of them getting an after-school job to help pay for it if they want something outside your budget. I know at 16 years old, people don’t have a whole frontal lobe yet, but the entitlement is startling.”

“I think you did exactly the right thing. Give them the budget and let them figure out how to perform miracles. It’s a good lesson in adulting. NTA.” ~ situationship321

“NTA, but I genuinely hope you humble them and make clear how much money $1.2k really is. It reads like they have no idea about any form of finances.” ~ Joubachi

“You’re NTA for refusing to throw three separate parties, but you’ve definitely gone wrong somewhere in raising THREE daughters who think they’re entitled to thousands of dollars on individual parties.” ~ Haloperimenopause

“NTA. Not to attack you, but you’re clearly raising them to be entitled and spoiled.”

“No jobs because they want to hang out with friends that they see every day probably before, during and after school and you’re still giving them a $1200 budget‽‽”

“OMG. Girl, you better cut them off and make them start paying their own way. I can only imagine how they’re gonna act in college.” ~ anonstories12

“NTA. In Finland, after you’re 14—when you go to upper elementary school—it’s finished with birthday parties. If kids want something with their friends, they save up from their own money.”

“I’m one of a handful of parents that does something and I usually take the boys bowling—son is 15—and there are like 8-9 kids. After that we go to Hesburger—Finnish burger chain—for some food.”

“Those other parents who do celebrate in a similar way like me—take the kids bowling or climbing on those walls, etc…—don’t do food, just the experience.

“And with all the food and bowling—and the prices in Finland being MUCH higher than in the US—our bill is still around €100 and that is only if I choose the neon and not normal bowling which is double as expensive.

“Nobody here would pay for an 18th birthday; kids would earn it themselves. Maybe a small financial help, but not the whole party.”

“When I was growing up, my mom would bake the cakes—those where the days when people actually still cooked—make food, etc… and dad would drive us out in the nature for a picnic or we would barbecue.” ~ Ok-Goat3688

“NTA. How can a Mom even think this way? She’s given in to them in the past, and that’s why they feel entitled to demand separate parties and for their Mom to get an extra job.”

“Mom needs to get her head checked. And these bratty princesses need to work and pay for their own party.” ~ Anon_Strike_292

“NTA. I am trying to imagine what would happen if I told my mother to ‘get another job’ to pay for my party at 16. Not only would my party be canceled, but I was pretty sure my phone, TV, hot water, and anything else she paid for would be gone until I groveled for forgiveness.

“She certainly wouldn’t be saying ‘oh, you’ll just have to make do with over a thousand dollars’.” ~ hoginlly

“NTA. I think that’s a bit unfair to say OP fked up as a parent. Sometimes you can raise your children all the right ways and they still turn out like little sh*ts. And being a single mom to triplets—holy hell, that sounds tough.”

“I’m sure those girls already face a lot of issues with identity and feeling lost and most kids in a single family have their birthday to themselves. These girls will never have an individual celebration just dedicated to them where all the attention is on one girl for milestones.”

“It will ALWAYS have to be a compromise, whereas their friends are probably getting showered with attention just on a single person, and issues like that are hard to deal with.”

“I’d cut Mom more slack. Raising kids is hard, especially kids around the same age. Raising triplets is harder, and then add a single mom to that?”

“You can’t even say it’s the mom’s fault for having triplets. Getting pregnant is a choice; how many babies come out is not.”

“It’s veryyyy easy to see how triplets can be entitled. You want to make sure that all of your kids feel supported, and all of them feel like their own person, and one is not favored more than the other.”

“Keeping that in mind, how does a single mom navigate finding the extremely hard perfect balance between raising her triplets right and raising them to feel supported?” ~ starfire92

Whatever mom decides to do, Reddit had her back as far as telling the triplets ‘no.’

Even if some thought she wasn’t being harsh enough.

Written by Amelia Mavis Christnot

Amelia Christnot is an Oglala Lakota, Kanien'kehá:ka Haudenosaunee and Metís Navy brat who settled in the wilds of Northern Maine. A member of the Indigenous Journalists Association, she considers herself another proud Maineiac.