A Reddit user has taken to the site to ask if they are being unreasonable for calling their sister out over her treatment of her daughter.
In the post, the user describes how they have created a throwaway account and changed individuals’ names for anonymity.
“My sister Sarah is married to Tom, and they have a daughter Rose,” they said. “A few weeks ago Rose and Tom got into an accident (they were carpooling to an event and Sarah was going to go later after work). Thankfully they’re both recovering now, but Rose was significantly worse off than Tom. Sarah got the news and she called me from the hospital. I was there a few hours after Sarah and they wouldn’t let me inside to see them, but Sarah came out and told me the updates on Tom. She hadn’t been to see Rose yet, but she said she got her updates from the nurses.”
“I stayed overnight at the hospital, Sarah was with Tom the entire time and she’d come out occasionally, I’d ask her if she wanted to go to Rose but she kept crying and saying that she was worried about Tom, so I let it go. Tom was cleared to go home 2 days later, but Rose was in for almost a week, and I was allowed to see her later. Her partner was out of state for work but he came back and was allowed in as well. During all this, Sarah didn’t physically go to see Rose once while Tom was still in, and only went after he went home (so 2 days later). Rose told me that she was hurt her mom didn’t come to see her earlier.”
They then described how the daughter is now acting coldly toward her mother.
“Sarah said she got Rose’s updates and Tom needed her a lot more. I said that Rose’s situation was a lot worse, but Sarah said that she was just trying to do her best and Rose is an adult and can push through. I got tired of her excuses so I told her to just admit that she was a crappy mom to Rose, and she’s lucky they let her into the apartment at all. Sarah got upset, said I was enabling Rose’s behavior. I haven’t talked to her since then, but was I the ahole for saying that?”
Who Comes First?
In most families, when two adults choose to have children, it’s common for the children to come first, sometimes to the determent of the couple. What about when they adults prioritize each other over their children, especially when that child is now an adult?
Dr Jonice Webb, PhD, is a clinical psychologist, author, and expert in childhood emotional neglect. On her website, she offers advice for how to deal with parents who you believe are emotionally neglecting you:
- Ask your parents about their own childhoods—You may be able to see whether and how your parents were failed by their parents. If you can see your own parents more clearly, you may be able to understand why they failed you.
- Try to find compassion for your parents—Often, when you can see how your own parents were emotionally neglected, you can feel some compassion for what they didn’t get. This can help you to feel less angry and frustrated with them for failing you.
- If possible, take a chance—If you feel there is a potential for positive results and healing, I suggest that you take a chance and talk about it.
In a comment with over 12,000 likes one person wondered if the daughter’s childhood was neglectful.
“NTA [not the ahole] I cannot wrap my head around the fact that her daughter was in hospital for a whole week and she didn’t visit her once. It makes me wonder what Roses childhood was like,” the user wrote.
The original poster clarified: “I edited the post a bit for clarity, but Sarah did go to see Rose after Tom went home, so 2 days later. The first couple of days were especially bad for Rose, and she said that she was upset Sarah didn’t come to see her once then,” to which another person replied: “Well that’s marginally better but still, who has an injured child and ignores them for two days?”
One user said the daughter was treated worse than her dog and praised the original posters actions. “If my husband and my DOG were hospitalized at the same time, he would be upset that I wasn’t also visiting her and giving him updates on how she seems to feel. It’s weird that neither of them seemed concerned. NTA at all and glad your niece has you in her life.”