Christmas is, simply put, an absolute circus for some families, and one Reddit man is exposing the clowns running amuck in his. Sharing his holiday woes on the platform’s “Am I The A—hole” forum, his tale involves adultery, misbehaving step-sisters, family members gone MIA, and more. Buckle up because this sleigh ride is about to get bumpy.
Let’s set the scene here, because it’s a super complicated one. OP, 29, shares that he is the only child between his mother and father. When he was a kid, his dad had an affair with another woman, got her pregnant with twins (Bella and Amy, 19), and his mother left his father due to his infidelity. His father and the twins’ mother ended up marrying.
Lo and behold nearly two decades after the girls were born, it came to light that Bella and Amy are not OP’s father’s biological daughters — the woman his dad cheated on his mom with was having sexual relations with other men as well. OP explains that the fallout turned “nasty and [his dad and the twins’ mom] divorced when Bella and Amy were 16.” He adds that his dad chose to remain in the twins’ lives, opting for 50/50 custody with their mom.
OP also writes that he “deeply resented” the twins and their mother “for many years, [but] with time and therapy I was able to let go of most of my anger.” He explains, “I will never be close to Bell and Amy and just opted to be polite whenever I saw them or their mom.”
Now that all of the messy context is on the table, let’s get to the heart of the issue. OP writes, “After a health scare Bella decided she wanted to find and reach out to her bio dad and while my dad wasn’t happy about it Bella soothed his worries when she stated that it would only be for medical purposes as she had no desire to have him in her life.”
He continues, “My dad helped Bella find him and they had a meeting, and never said anything about it again. Unfortunately it was revealed that Bella lied and was still seeing her dad in secret and Amy eventually joined her. My dad wasn’t happy about it and there was an argument, but when Amy brought up how it was their right to see their dad something in my dad snapped.”
We have to give props to OP’s dad for being the bigger person and helping Bella seek out her bio dad. However, we definitely agree that it’s the girls’ right to get to know their biological father if they wish to. It’s not super clear if OP’s dad is upset with them for simply continuing to see their bio dad or for lying to him about it — or both. The twins are definitely in the wrong for lying, and while we can understand that they may not have wanted to have that difficult conversation with the dad who raised them, it wasn’t right for them to lie to or mislead him about their intentions with their bio dad.
OP reveals, “He got quiet and told the girls that they were right and when Amy and Bella left to spend the summer with their dad and his family, my dad put the house up for sale, moved all of Amy and Bella’s things to a storage unit, deleted his social media, and changed this number. My dad sent a letter [for] Bella and Amy to their mom’s place explaining what he had done and that they had 30 days before he cut off all financial support (i.e. College funds, phones, etc.) saying that since their bio dad is so important that he can be their father fully.”
This feels a bit dramatic and petty from OP’s dad. Again, Bella and Amy are adult women who can get to know their bio dad if they want to. While they shouldn’t have lied, what they’ve done doesn’t really warrant the dad having an entire identity crisis. Being upset and struggling to come to terms with the girls making space in their lives for their bio dad is understandable, but it’s not like they’re cutting OP’s dad out of their lives. We’re sensing a bit of projection here — perhaps OP’s dad is severing ties with the girls before they can do so to him, out of his fear of the possibility becoming a reality.
“My dad hasn’t spoken to the girls since,” OP continues, “and his side of the family is on his side thinking that Bella and Amy are ungrateful and just as disrespectful as their mom. Bella and Amy have reached out to me to help them see and talk to my dad again, but I don’t want to get involved nor do I even know where to find him.” Totally understandable. This is their issue, not his, and since he’s made it clear he’s never had a familial relationship with his half-sisters, he has no obligation to be the mediator in this situation.
“My father finally reached out asking if he could come spend Christmas with me, my wife, our daughter, and my wife’s parents and I agreed,” he shares. “I’m not sure how but Bella and Amy found out and told me that they were going to [come] over too. Not ask, but TOLD. I said No. I know that eventually my dad is going to have to have a talk with Bella and Amy but I don’t want that drama at my house during my daughter’s first Christmas.”
We’re not really sure why the twins think it’s their place to intrude on OP’s family’s holiday to hash out their own family feud. Talk about being inappropriate on several levels. OP concludes, “I told my dad about Bella and Amy and he said that he said everything he needed to in his letter and has no desire to talk to them. I told Bella and Amy that they are not welcome and they, along with their family and friends, are calling me TA. AITA?”
Anyone else hear circus music in the background? Fellow Redditors certainly do, and they’re calling out the chaos while assuring OP that he’s definitely not the a—hole in this scenario.
One user wrote, “NTA. This is not your circus. These are not your monkeys. You have no biological or familial relationship with Amy or Bella, and you’re not obligated to provide the forum for them to have whatever conversation they believe they need to have with your father.” Another user added, “Since it’s Christmas: Not your sleigh, not your elves.”
“NTA, no one gets to invite themselves into your home for any reason,” another Redditor wrote. “And you don’t owe these two women a chance to attempt a reconciliation with your father. That is between the three of them and you aren’t obligated to facilitate anything in your home over the holidays. If these women show up to your home call the police and have trespassed from the property.”
One user commented, “I had to laugh at your dad’s karmic justice. BUT I also will say he’s being a d*ck to them about it. I get that he’s hurt, but they have a right to find their bio dad and they shouldn’t be punished for it. What he did was stone cold.”
Another user disagreed, writing, “He’s punishing them for LYING. He agreed to them meeting. And as he said, if they want bio-dad as their father that’s their choice. Their ADULT Choice. He doesn’t have to house them, feed them, or pay for their education. He did more than his duty when he found out that they weren’t his bio-children.”
One Redditor is suggesting OP go incognito and avoid the drama altogether regardless of who’s at fault, writing, “NTA. This is soap opera sh*t. I’m sorry. Sounds like you need to celebrate Christmas with your partner and child at undisclosed Airbnb.”
Hopefully the poor guy can enjoy a silent night with his loved ones rather than a sleigh ride from hell come Christmas Day.
Before you go, check out some of Reddit’s most jaw-dropping Thanksgiving stories.
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