Carpooling Clash: Woman Rejects Friend’s Request

When you're the parent of a special needs child, that child becomes the primary focus of every decision you make. Even in the midst of wonderful friends and family, you're likely to get some negative reactions over your choices.

There's also a lesson to be learned about friendship. Even as adults, navigating friendships can be a bit like kindergarten. As long as you're doing what your “friend” wants, everything's golden. The minute you can't or won't do what they're asking, however, things can go downhill fast.

Learning how to gauge real friendship is a valuable trait we can all work on more after reading the following tale.

Redditor @artsyfartsy-choc is finding out just how far those decisions go—and a thing or two about friendship—when doing what's best for her autistic son.

Here's The Story

OP is the mother of an autistic son who is about to turn 10. As such, he needs extra care when dealing with getting ready for school and setting up his day so he knows what to expect.

A friend of OP wanted to have her two daughters ride to school with OP since the children all attend the same elementary school. OP says that for a while they tried having the girls ride along every day, but they are often late. This causes problems for OP where her son is concerned.

OP noticed that her son would get visibly upset when the girls came to get into her car, so she started to investigate. Upon questioning him, she found out that her son doesn't like sharing important time with his mom with the girls. She thinks he likes being able to prepare for the day in a quieter setting where he can focus on the day ahead.

OP said she eventually told her friend that the girls couldn't ride with her anymore and the friend got mad and said OP was “purposefully excluding them.”

Fast forward two months and OP's friend once again asked for an “ongoing favor.” She requested that OP take her girls to school two times per week so she could take her older son to a chiropractor appointment before school.

Knowing that her son's situation hadn't changed, OP declined the request and her friend asked her: “What excuse do you have this time?”

OP is of the opinion that just because someone is a friend does not obligate her to say yes when a favor is asked. She laments: “Am I the AH for not driving her girls to school, even when it means my son would get upset and go to school mad?”

People Have Opinions

One person shared that they don't think OP is TA. “You are your son’s advocate,” they wrote, “and you are giving him what he needs. I don’t understand your friend. If my friend told me their child needed alone time on the ride to school, I’d understand and respect her decision.”

Another woman thought OP should start asking her “friend” for a favor and see how the conversation goes.

“NTA. OP, I would tell your ‘friend' that you drove her kids to school for X number of months, so can she start doing your grocery shopping every week? If she tells you no, ask her what her excuse is. Ask her why she's trying to exclude you when you KNOW she's going to the store anyway. Then, ask her if she can start taking your trash and recycling out every week. I bet the same thing will happen.”

Yet another person agrees that OP is NTA. “As a parent, you’re taking care of your child's needs,” they wrote. “As for your friend’s snarky comment, all favors are off the board. You didn’t need to explain why you couldn’t do it, no means no.”

In The End

Relationships, including friendships, all have stages; sometimes, there's an ‘end stage.' Do you think OP should drop her ‘friend,' or is there another alternative?

This thread inspired this post.

The article is produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.