Medical needs in countries without universal healthcare can lead to families taking drastic measures.
But not everyone is willing to do anything to help pay for medical care. A 39-year-old mother who wasn't willing to take away her daughter's inheritance to help her stepson wondered if she did the right thing.
So she consulted the "Am I The A**hole" (AITA) subReddit for feedback.
Redditor WW39707 asked:
"AITA For refusing to sell the land my daughter inherited from her dad to pay for my stepson's surgery?"
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
"My late husband passed away when our daughter was 10 years old. He inherited land from his mom and decided to leave it as it is."
"He didn't invest in it he just decided that he'd leave it for our daughter. Before he died we had a few conversations that were unwanted but necessary."
"And he made it clear that the land goes to our daughter. Our daughter is now 15 years old."
"I married my now husband Josh who has a chronically sick son aged 17. I have a job and so I help with hospital bills/medication."
"4 months ago I paid X money to get my stepson the medical device he needed but that's just a temporary solution. I do all I can and the money I have left is for basic everyday needs."
"My husband isn't doing well financially. His work was affected by our circumstances and he's struggling."
"About a month ago Josh brought up the land and asked questions about it. I told him that I don't plan on doing anything with it and it will be my daughter's decision when she's older."
"He never brought it up again until last week. He came back from the hospital looking very angry."
"He said he got into an argument with his family for refusing to help him with my stepson's surgery in March. He asked me if I could sell the land and use some of the money for my stepson's surgery and give the rest to my daughter."
"I told him I can't. He told me I'm her parent meaning that I get to decide on what to do with the land and it's not like I will get into legal troubles because I have the authority to do what I want."
"We argued back and forth and he lashed out at me saying I was being selfish and prioritizing my daughter over his son. He said he already made plans because he couldn't wait any longer and needed the money so he expects me to pitch in and help."
"His words were hurtful because I can't count the times I helped with both money and effort and just because I told him I can't do anything with the land he calls me selfish."
"We got nowhere after this argument. His last sentence before he walked out was 'I hope your conscience will let you sleep at night'."
"And it was awful. I cried because he was putting a lot of pressure on me and refusing to see that all I got for my daughter's future is this land that her dad left her."
"Most of my salary is spent on my stepson and his needs. His sister called me asking why I was arguing with him and making him stressed out when he's dealing with so much already."
"I don't know what he told her but he probably lied. He's not speaking to me right now and is trying to talk to my daughter about it."
"I'm not even sure what he's telling my stepson now since he already talked to his sister causing her to lash out at me."
"The surgery is only needed to improve his condition—the device we got him isn't supposed to be used for long even though it's only been 4 months. I understand it's a temporary solution and my stepson's health isn't improving."
"My husband has time to find money but he's making it seem like it's my fault and that he doesn't need to find the money since we have the land. He keeps saying that I'm selfish and not doing enough."
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.
"As a parent of a chronically ill child myself, your husband crossed a boundary. That land was never yours."
"It was your late husband's and he told you he wants his daughter to have it. If it was me, I'd feel like I was disrespecting one of his last wishes."
"THAT wouldn't sit well on my conscience. He was way out of line, and that's not okay."
"Just because you are going through a really hard time doesn't mean you get to sh*t on everyone else!" ~ ms_chick
"I agree! NTA. How can a step-father ask his step daughter to pressure his wife/her mom to sell an heirloom she inherited, passed down from her grandmother to her father and onto her?"
"Yes you should help your step-son but the thing is you have and you've done everything in your power—you've even sold your jewellery."
"It is not your daughter's responsibility to pay for her step brother's treatment." ~ matcha_homegirl
"NTA. It sucks what is happening to his son, but that is not his or your land."
"He made plans? He shouldn't have."
"Anything regarding money that's not his should be discussed first. He's desperate and this won't end well."
"It's really starting to feel he's using you as financial help for his son. Do you even have a stable relationship?"
"How is your relationship impacting your daughter? Helping is one thing, but he is crossing lines that may end up with decisions that could seem like you're spitting on your late husband's grave."
"Perhaps you need to get away for a day somewhere you feel calm and safe, then think about the situation you're in. He has some nerve calling you selfish after you pitched for his son's bills time and time again. Disgusting."
"I hope one day he will look in the mirror and see what sort of guilt tripping monster he's turning into." ~ ChewMyFudge
While desperate times may call for desperate measures, Redditors didn't fault this mother for preserving her late husband's final wishes and protecting her daughter's inheritance.