Grief can bring the worst out in people. For some, that means reconnecting with their family after years of abandonment just to take away what is rightfully theirs.
Redditor throwweight12 encountered this very issue with her estranged dad. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for refusing to give my father the house my grandmother left me?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“Some important context:”
“My father left me when I was 10, I came home from school one day and he was gone and I was alone. My grandmother eventually took me in but that moment gave me issues that I’m still working through.”
“My grandmother passed away and was buried a couple of weeks ago. I saw my father for the first time in 14 years at his mother’s funeral.”
“After the will was read, we learnt that my grandmother had left me her property. My father was furious, apparently he feels he has more rights to her property than I do because she was his mother.”
“He’s been harassing me to hand over the property to him and promising that when he dies I can have it.”
OP is trying to respect her grandmother’s wishes.
“I don’t want to give him the property because if my grandmother wanted him to have it she would’ve put it in her will.”
“My father has been going around telling the family that I stole his mother’s property right from under him and I’m trying to punish him for leaving me.”
“My family have been reaching out to tell me that even if he abandoned me that I shouldn’t forget the importance of filial piety and how being good to my father even if he isn’t good to me is what makes a good daughter.”
“I don’t think I’m doing anything wrong but the comments and the suggestions are beginning to wear me down.”
“Am I the a**hole?”
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 not the a**hole.
“You are NTA. You owe your father nothing for walking out on you.”
“Don’t even engage with him. Block his number, if you have to. If he attempts to confront you in person, walk away.”
“Put all your relatives on blast and tell them that the matter has been decided, that you’re keeping the house, and that you will block anyone who attempts to continue discussing the topic.”
“A fire can’t burn without oxygen, so starve this issue of all its fuel.” ~ 1800TurdFerguson
“All of this!!! Did you plot at 10 years old to have your father move away while you weren’t there so that many years later after your grandmothers passing you might get given her house… no.”
“I’m pretty sure that was not your plan!”
“Your father is an asshat and so are the family defending him. I agree to put them on blast that you never asked for the house but equally why would you give what’s yours to a man who left a literal child alone?!?”
“100% NTA. Block him and maybe also change the locks on the off chance he still has a key.” ~ Herps15
Many argued OP should take more comprehensive safety measures.
“Yes! Change the locks, protect yourself! Your grandmother left YOU the house! It’s yours! Don’t trust him to do what’s right now, he’s never done so before.”
“NTA, 100%” ~ joniangel2776
“And invest in really inclusive homeowners insurance. I know this sounds super paranoid, but OP’s father sounds like the kind of person who would burn her house down… like ‘if I can’t have it, no one can’” ~ Vness374
“I hope you can read this — it is really worrisome how intent your father is on getting the house.”
“Protect yourself first always. NEVER share keys with ANY of your family. They may or may not hand it over to your father. Keep only copies of important documents at home and originals in a safety box at a bank.” ~ taschana
“Actually it’s not really that worrisome. Don’t get me wrong she should still protect herself in every possible way, but as someone who used to work for a trust administration company I can promise you this is beyond common.”
“Family members showing up after many years of no contact expecting a big slice of the estate happens all the time. Usually nothing comes from it, though if I was OP I’d chat with a few trust lawyers and get an idea of who I’d hire should he formally contest the will.”
“If he does obviously follow the lawyers advice but assuming all of what is listed is true… gone for 14 years and not in the will at all the only thing I’d have the lawyer say is ‘see you in court.'” ~ Sparcrypt
“First, most of us have seen how funerals really do bring out the absolute worst in many people.”
“Second–and most importantly–OP used a phrase that is typical of folks who are of an Eastern ethnicity (specifically, AAPI): filial piety. There may be cultural issues at work here that are causing more of the problem than ‘just go no contact’ (which is often the hot take advice people get on Reddit) can really resolve.”
“If it is a cultural question/expectation, then OP actually has a better response than ‘ignore and block’ everyone: remind these relatives (and remember, just because you have blood relatives, that doesn’t necessarily mean they count as ‘family’) that, if filial piety is so important, why did her father ignore his responsibilities to his mother until after she died? You don’t get to apply ‘filial piety’ to OP while keeping completely silent on OP’s sperm donor’s utter lack of filial piety while his own mother was alive.”
“Personally, I’d call them out on their hypocrisy and then go no contact with anyone who insists OP be held to a higher standard than the one they refused to enforce with OP’s sperm donor. The ones who do realize what they’re doing and try to change the behavior might be worth keeping.” ~ falls_asleep_reading
OP doesn’t owe him anything.