Reddit user @Throwaway476905 posted a scenario to Reddit's AITA thread asking for advice in dealing with his 20-year-old daughter.
The OP says his daughter is a college student who lives at home rent-free. He claims he only asks his daughter to “do a few things around the house from time to time, like cooking and cleaning.” He added that “Occasionally she has to watch over her younger brothers since I may be busy with work or when I need a break to hang out with my girlfriend.”
His daughter, feeling the workload on her back was unfair, lamented to her dad. She said, “she's okay with cooking and cleaning around the house, but having to watch over her siblings was annoying & stressful and that it's taking away from her studies.”
Apparently, that didn't sit well with OP. He adds, “That pissed me off because I myself went to school while having to pay bills & take care of her as a baby alongside my ex-wife. I told her she was acting very privileged and that if I could do it, so could she.”
OP's daughter didn't like his point of view and “went behind his back,” to discuss the topic with her aunt.
OP feels his sister is “…very kind & gullible at times, so she called me and said the least I could do was give her an allowance for the chores I make her do. I explained why I felt that wasn't necessary and she told me not to compare my situation to my Daughter's since apparently, I put myself in the position I was in back then which I guess is a fair argument.”
Still, OP went on to defend himself further. ” since she is living in my house rent free and I'm paying for her college, I feel that in of itself should count as an allowance. So I just wanted to ask whether I'm wrong for not wanting to pay her extra money to do basic chores.”
This post was a mixed bag of responses, with plenty of posters wishing they had more information to go on.
User @eikerir thought OP definitely was TA saying, ” ‘because I myself went to school while having to pay bills & take care of her as a baby alongside…'
That was your own baby and your own decision, same as now. You daughter has no kids, it's not her responsibility.”
Who is Right?
Speculation ran rampant as commenters tried to ‘read between the lines.' Their decisions were based more on that speculation than facts given in the original post.
Redditor @AdEmbarrassed9719 thought the daughter should certainly receive some compensation if the babysitting was substantial, especially because the daughter said it was interfering with her studies. “I agree. If it's interfering with her studies then it sounds like it's more than a couple times a month. I'm curious how much younger these kids are, as well. If it's a 10 and 12 year old twice a month for a few hours in the evening when she'd be home anyway? No big deal. If it's a 2, 5, 7 and 9 year old three evenings every week and all day on most Saturdays? Not reasonable.
Like I fully expect that older children can and should on occasion help care for younger siblings when necessary – in emergencies or once in a while situations. It's just what families do. But if it's frequent or regular there needs to be some compensation IMO, and if it's interfering with school? That's a problem.”
@Unusual_Locksmith_91 definitely thought the post was ‘vague' and didn't include enough information. “I agree with the general consensus that there's not enough information to form a proper opinion. It really is vague enough that it could go either way, but I definitely tentatively agree. That elaboration twisted things to almost make his daughter sound like a wife replacement.
Not saying this is the case, but OPs phrasing isn't doing him any favours. If his requests are enough to be affecting her quality of study, I feel as though he's being the problem because you're right. Students generally aren't running a household.”
@pugapooh definitely thought OP was TA and had some advice to offer. “Right. Is it “daily”, or “from time to time”? I’m betting it’s daily.
OP,YTA. First,for just blowing her off. Second,for expecting her to be the same as you. She didn’t choose to have kids. And you said “alongside your ex-wife”. So it wasn’t all on you. You sound resentful that she might have it easier than you.
She said she is fine with cooking and cleaning. Sounds like child care is her issue. I didn’t see how many younger brothers or ages. So we have no idea what she has to do. Does she have a chance to work for actual money? Time for a social life? Maybe her major is more intense than yours.
Invite the girlfriend over and stay home.”
Parenting can be rough, even when you're pretty sure you know what you're doing. Bad attitudes and an inability to compromise, however, can make an already difficult job even more stressful.
Did OP have the right to be angry with his grown daughter, or was the daughter in the right? Clearly, respondents were torn on the subject as there was no definitive distinction on OP's post about whether he was or wasn't TA.
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