However, what he chose to do with the old laptop instead of getting rid of it really upset his sister.
He visited the "Am I an A**hole" (AITA) subReddit to see what strangers might say about his questionable loyalty.
The Original Poster (OP) asked:
"AITA for giving my old, slightly damaged MacBook to my cat and not my sister?"
"Ok so I know this sounds a little ridiculous so bear with me. Just last week I purchased a new MacBook for myself, my old one lasted me 5 years and is still technically working but due to some water damage the speakers are completely f'ked."
"The screen flickers quite a bit when not charging and overall its just slow. I have no use for it anymore."
"Regarding my cat, so I live in a fairly small apartment and although it has windows there really isn't much to see besides a few trees and the parking lot really. I got my cat a few months ago and have a cat tree by the window, shelves and spaces so she can climb up high, and quite a few toys I play with."
"At first, my cat had no problem hanging by the window, but eventually I noticed she started to get bored and while i'm in the middle of working she would constantly meow or do mischievous things."
"I put on cat tv a few times for her and noticed she really enjoyed it and would stare at it for hours. However, I would put this on my new tv as this was really the only free screen I had.
"She would at times pounce at the tv, once almost knocking it back."
"After I got my brand new laptop I figured i'll barely get anything for selling my old one, i might as well use it for my cat. It's worked great, I put on 'Cat TV' on YouTube and have the back of the laptop screen against the wall beside me, so while I'm working she just sits there looking at the screen occasionally pawing at it and then falling asleep."
"Of course I still play with her and give her plenty of pets, but I've found this is a great way to keep her mentally stimulated. This also prevents any concern of her damaging my electronics or hurting her self."
"I took a photo of her sitting and looking at the laptop because it looked like she was hard at work and though it was funny and sent it to my family. My brother and mom laughed but my sister messaged me:
"Sister (S): Hey you gave your macbook to the cat?"
"Me (M): Yes, mine was pretty banged up and I needed a new one and this keeps her occupied."
"S: Ok, well if you're no longer using it, can I have it?"
"M: Well there really is no point considering there are so many issues with it, It's not like the cat owns it, I just use it for her to keep her occupied when I feel like she needs to see more than just the parking lot."
"S: So you're gonna keep it for your cat rather than give it to me who needs it for school? Macbooks aren't cheap."
"M: I'm aware they aren't cheap, but there are other companies."
"This basically went on for a bit until she said i was being an inconsiderate a**hole. If the macbook was in better condition i would totally give it to her, but fixing the screen and speakers and replacing the battery will cost about the same or more as a mid-range windows laptop."
"My mom and brother just kinda laughed at it and said not too worry but my sister is being pretty cold with me."
Anonymous strangers on the internet were asked if and where guilt belongs by declaring:
- NTA - Not The A**hole
- YTA - You're The A**hole
- ESH - Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH - No A**holes Here
Many Redditors declared NTA and agreed it would be more cost effective for the OP to buy a cheaper laptop than paying for expensive repairs.
"NTA it's also probable if you gave it to her in the condition it was in, she'd complain you gave her a busted laptop. Gift horse and mouth and all that."
"Honestly, unless theres a specific reason you need a macbook, drop the money on a different laptop that's not going to need so many repairs." – aetheravis
"NTA. I'd so do this. My cat has 4 different types of food, a handmade wicker cat cave, a cat tent, a million toys and is a regular participant in my zoom calls."
"When I was buying my house, he was my primary consideration. It had to be safe for him. I'd probably buy him a laptop of I thought he'd use it. He only likes mine to sleep on." – ACatGod
"NTA and from your sister's attitude, it sounds like your cat deserves it more anyway." – spacecatterpillar
"NTA. Your sister is acting pretty entitled over the MacBook, to say the least. You don't have any obligation to give it to her."
"Good job giving your cat a source of entertainment that won't result in a broken TV!" – allcreamandsugar
This person pointed out there are no villains in this story.
"NAH imo, people on here act as if siblings can't be a little prickly to each other. You should probably explain better that the laptop barely functions as is and you don't want her to have to sink money into repairing it (and you certainly won't either)."
"From a surface level, I'd be upset too if my sibling gave their MacBook to their cat instead of me. She probably just doesn't understand that the laptop will just cause her more frustration than it's worth. Communicate better :)" – EggplantParmmie
Yet a handful of Redditors said the OP shouldn't have prioritized the cat's needs over the one's of his own flesh and blood.
"YTA Obviously, your sister is not entitled to it. Obviously, you have the right to decide what you wanna do with your laptop. Reddit will even tell you that you can use it as a chopping board instead of letting your sister use it for school."
"At the end of the day, it would 10/10 be a nice gesture to give it to your sister especially when she is using it for school. Of course you can choose to use it as a Cat TV, as a chopping board or even as a f'king frisbee but don't expect that your sister will not be upset that you choose those options over helping her out."
"Your sistershould obviously bear the costs of any repairs though." – Seismic_Jeopardy
"Very well put! Yes at the end of the day it's OP's decision on what to use it for. But giving it to the cat over the sister sends the absolutely wrong message to your family members and yes I think it is a little selfish." – miniyeti13
"Against the grain but YTA, you should have offered it to her first. If she wanted to spend money on the repairs, she could and then she'd have a perfectly good MacBook."
"For those saying 5 years is a long time for computers, I agree but I am typing this from my 2012 MacBook Pro, which with some tweaks and upgrades runs like new."
"I once gave a less well off cousin a laptop I considered as worth nothing but scrap, he was over the moon. Your sister might have appreciated it more than the cat." – ArsalanBaig
"YTA. Your sister is possibly struggling and your cat toy would improve her life. So what if the screen and speakers are broken."
"She can figure it out or deal with it. Especially if she doesnt have a laptop, she could greatly benefit from a half working laptop." – UncookedAndLimp
"Jesus. YTA- listen, I understand the want to call your sister entitled, but at the end of the day, a busted laptop is better than no laptop at all."
"Many people here are making the assumptions that she'll complain about the condition it's in. We don't know what her money situation is like, and I'm sure you can find cheaper alternatives to entertain your cat while they are away."
"We also don't know exactly the manner she approached you with, only your account of it- and redditors are claiming 'entitled brat' without the full story.
"You're intentionally prioritizing the happiness of your cat over your potential to help your sister out with her school. What you prioritize is really up to you, but you've asked to be judge for that."
"I personally think its a**holeish behavior to put your cat over your sister. No matter which way you look at it, even if she has an attitude, you're giving up your chance to be a nice brother and help her out. You're passing up the opportunity to be merciful and help elevate your sister for the sake of a pet."
Overall, Many Redditors said the recipient of the old laptop was ultimately the OP's decision.