in , , ,

Grandma Called Out For Taking Five-Year-Old Grandson To The Grave Of Her Miscarried Child

Woman putting flowers at a gravestone.
Marcus Lindstrom/Getty Images

While many people dream of having children one day, it’s a dream not everyone gets to fulfill.

Some people sadly discover that they aren’t capable of having children, while others have the heartbreaking experience of miscarriage or stillbirth.

There are those who work around the issue of conceiving and later adopt a child whom they will love as if they actually were their own flesh and blood.

Sadly, this is a non-starter for a number of people who won’t accept having children who aren’t biologically theirs.

Redditor HotPlatypus9646 was adopted and grew up with a rather shocking reminder from her mother that she was not the way she had envisioned becoming a parent.

Not helping this sad situation was a yearly reminder inflicted upon the original poster (OP) by her mother.

But when the OP’s mother began including her own 5-year-old son in this ritual, she finally felt the need to put her foot down.

Wondering if she was being unreasonable, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for telling my mom she can’t talk to my kid about her miscarriage and take him to the grave?”

The OP explained why she felt the need to speak up and tell her mother to back off including her son in an annual ritual she was forced to be a part of growing up.

“I (28 F[emale]) have a son (5 M[ale]).”

“I was adopted and grew up the consolation prize for the miscarriage my mom (68 F) had at 20 weeks.”

“We had to go to this fetus’s grave every year.”

“One of my earliest memories was her forcing me to give my favorite stuffed rabbit to the grave.”

“I grew up with her venting about how hard the miscarriage was to me, and I honestly think it was super inappropriate, and it made me feel like a second option to what she actually wanted.”

“I obviously was never good enough.”

“I recently found out that she took my son to the fetus’s grave and told him about it.”

“I told her that’s an off-limits topic, and he has no business hearing about her miscarriage at five years old.”

“Now, some people in my life are saying I am an ah for telling my mom she couldn’t tell my son about his dead aunt, but I think I’m justified in not wanting him to have to hear about it too.”

“It was literally 30 years ago.”

“Am I the a**hole?”

Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:

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

The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for speaking up to her mother.

Everyone agreed that it was unfair, possibly even abusive, for the OP’s mother to inflict her own grief on her and her child, and no matter the situation, the OP had every right to tell her mother what was and wasn’t appropriate for her child.

“NTA Your mum spent years trauma dumping on you, and now she is trying to do it to your son.”

“Your 5 yr old is not her therapist.”- Catherine16783


“First and foremost, five is a bit early to start talking about dead people he’s never met.”

“Second, and as important, YOU are the parent. SHE is GrandMa; babysit and spoil the child, but she does NOT get to decide when a kid is ready for different benchmarks in growing up.”

“Bottom line is, YOUR child, YOUR rules.”

“If she doesn’t agree, she doesn’t get to be alone with him.”- ReverendSpith


“Everyone is entitled to grieve for a loved one, but your mom is obsessed with grieving for the baby she miscarried over 40 years ago.”

“I was in my teens when I found out that my mother miscarried my parent’s first baby and third baby (overheard my dad say something, so I asked my mom about it).”

“I can’t imagine what it would’ve been like to grow up being dragged to their grave sites.”

“If your mother is still full of sorrow, she needs grief counseling, but you are right to limit your son’s exposure to her obsession.”- MysticYoYo


“She went through a horrible thing, and she’s entitled to still feel love for the baby she lost.”

“However, making you give your toy and making you her therapist for the entirety of your childhood?”

“Completely off the rails, you should’ve been celebrated instead of living in your sibling’s shadow for almost 30 years. It’s not/never was your responsibility to heal your mother.”

“Her taking him somewhere you didn’t give explicit permission to take him to is crossing a line.”

“Your child doesn’t need to go through that experience, too. Please protect your family and let your child have the choice to hear about it when he’s old enough to comprehend what a miscarriage is/if he wants to.”- SparklingWalnut


“Your mother has unresolved trauma.”

“As a fellow adoptee, I’m really sorry you had to grow up with this dysfunction, which sounds like it resulted in your own trauma.”

“You can break the cycle right now by limiting your child’s contact with your mother and always supervising.”

“Sending you the best.”- Unguest

“NTA, your mom needs serious mental help to be dwelling on this over 30 years.”

“I’d be cutting her contact with her grandson if she keeps this up.”- EbonyDoe


“Your son is not her therapist.”

“It’s EXTREMELY inappropriate for her to take a five-year-old to a grave and unload like that.”-chebstr

“NTA, The stuffed rabbit part made me so sad.”

“Your mom needs therapy, obviously.”

“But also, why pass on that trauma to her grandson?”

“There is sharing your authentic experience when appropriate, and then there is orchestrating a show to indulge your feelings.”

“This is giving orchestrated theatrics.”

“Even negative feelings can make one self-centered.”

“I hope she finds peace.”

“I’m sorry you didn’t get all the love and appreciation that you deserve when young.”- JackKnifeNiffy


“A parent told me I was ‘only alive’ because my brother was a miscarriage.”

“Hearing stuff like that’ll mess a kid up.”

“This grief and misplaced guilt doesn’t need to be transmitted to another generation.”

“Hang in there.”- ThujaOccidentallis


“Your mother needed more help when it happened. Processing grief this way is not healthy for anyone.”- Acrobatic_End6355

“NTA. i’m sympathetic to your mother. But the blunt fact of the matter is, her first child was a miscarriage.”

“Yes, it’s unfortunate. but instead of celebrating you, her successful wonderful ALIVE child, she made your entire childhood about the one she lost.”

“Putting a deceased child above an alive child, especially for SO LONG is not okay.”

“She needs therapy. she needed therapy 28 years ago.”

“You tell her she gets therapy now or you don’t bring your child around her. don’t allow your child to suffer what you want through.”- likecommentsurvive

“NTA x1000.”

“YOUR job as a parent is to protect your kid from trauma.”

“Your mother sadly has a habit of dumping her trauma on little kids.”

“You are within your rights to prohibit her from seeing your kid until she goes to therapy and learns to deal with her grief.”

“Your child does not have to carry her grief.”

“You suffered enough for it.”

“She needs to learn to manage her emotions.”

“Protect your kid.”- Rohini_rambles


“I’ve had several miscarriages myself, and while I mourn the loss, it doesn’t control my life.”

“For the simple fact that life goes on, even when something you love dies.”

“Living in the past or dwelling on what could’ve been just makes you lose out on what’s there.”

“Which is what your adoptive mother has done.”

“She’s grieved for so long that she doesn’t see what’s right in front of her: a daughter and a grandson that need her way more than her deceased child ever could.”

“And if she’s not careful, she’ll lose that too.”

“For which I would not blame you in the least.”- Old_Inevitable8553

The OP later returned with an update, thanking everyone who took the time to comment and share how she intended to handle the situation.

“Thank you so much, everyone, for the support, I was somewhat gaslit for my whole childhood, and this thread has really helped me to see how messed up it really was that she consistently trauma dumped on me and put her grief on me during my childhood.”

“I’m definitely going to consider going LC, and if my son tells me she’s brought it up again likely NC.”

A miscarriage is a devastating experience no one deserves to go through.

Even so, the fact that the OP’s mother decided to inflict her grief on her child rather than celebrate becoming a parent makes this a very difficult thread to judge.

One can only hope she’ll get the help she needs and begin to improve her relationship with the OP and her grandson.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.