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'AITA for dressing down my niece at a family function after accused me of being a Karen?'

'AITA for dressing down my niece at a family function after accused me of being a Karen?'


It's only natural to stand up for your kid, but because of the inherent bias, it can be hard to know when you've gone too far or not far enough.

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a mom asked if she was wrong for giving her niece an ear-ful after she was called a Karen. She wrote:

"AITA for dressing down my niece at a family function after accused me of being a “Karen” and said rude things about my daughter to our family?"

The Situation with my Daughter’s Teacher:

The only teacher that my (44F) daughter “Sarah” (17F) has ever had issue with is “Miss Jane.” From what I’ve heard of Miss Jane, she gives special treatment to the more popular kids because she views herself as a popular kid and wants approval.

Miss Jane turns a blind eye to a lot of bad behavior from the more popular kids in her class. One of these more popular girls “Amber” had been b*llying Sarah for weeks. Miss Jane witnessed most of the b*llying directly yet said and did nothing about it.

I had to escalate it to administration for anything to be done about Amber, at which point she was finally given detention and had her seat moved away from Sarah’s in the classes they share. After this incident, Sarah said that Miss Jane seemed to take it personally on Amber’s behalf and begun grading her assignments unfairly compared to the other students.

The last straw was the recent project where she gave a presentation that accounted for a good portion of her grade. It was clear that Miss Jane graded based on her personal dislike of Sarah. Just one example was that she marked Sarah for standing in one place during the presentation and not moving more.

This was not in the rubric and Sarah confirmed with her classmates that Miss Jane had marked nobody else off for that. I again had to escalate this to administration for anything to be done about it. It took fighting with them for Sarah’s grade to finally be raised to the one she deserved.

I also put in a request with administration to transfer Sarah into another teacher’s class. I told my sister “May” (40F) about this because naturally we talk about everything.

The Situation with my Niece:

Unfortunately, my niece “Chloe” (19F) decided to purposely misconstrue what happened in order to create drama at a recent family event. And it’s far from the first time she’s done something like this.

I overheard her telling my (rather uncomfortable) dad about how I was a “Typical Karen” throwing a tantrum to get her kid’s way. She was saying rude things about Sarah too, accusing her of only passing because I whine to the school, which is not even remotely true. Sarah is on the honor roll because she is highly intelligent and works hard.

I pulled Chloe outside for a word, and I did dress her down for the things she’d been saying both that day and at family functions before then. I told her that don’t get if she’s bored or insecure about herself and that’s why she needs to make up drama all the time, but I am done with it. I’ve bitten my tongue before but I’d wanted to say that to Chloe for a while now.

Chloe apologized and was silent for the rest of the event. May later called me to say I was wrong for how I handled Chloe. May agreed I was okay with being frustrated, but our relatives all know Chloe tends to dramatize things because it’s just what people her age do. And there was no need to embarrass her like I did. AITA?

The internet had a lot of opinions on the scenario.

snickers2120 wrote:

If someone had “dressed down” my cousin as a teen, maybe she wouldn’t be a drama queen, self victimizing mid-thirties adult.

NTA - the only way for Chloe to learn to be a functional adult is through tough lessons. Her mother is doing more harm than good.

Liss78 wrote:

You said it better than I would have. Too many people ignore discipline when it comes to the gossipy bulls**t kids do and they wind up being terrible adults who think they can just keep doing that forever. If you've ever had the misfortune of knowing anyone like that, you'd agree.

roronoaSuge_nite wrote:

If she dramatizes things because that’s what people her age do, then you shut it down because that’s what people your age does. NTA in the least bit.

Truth_Tornado wrote:

This. Also, where does this b*llying from Chloe come from? She’s done with HS, that crap should be long behind her. What is SHE doing with her life? Is she in college? Does she have an adequate plan for what she is working towards, in terms of long-term goals? Or is she just absolutely jealous that your daughter is smarter, more focused, and more likely to succeed??

Silaquix wrote:

NTA, especially considering even her own mother acknowledged that Chloe was "exaggerating" and basically stirring s#$t against you and your daughter. It's obvious your sister wasn't going to correct the behavior and never had since she acknowledges it's been an ongoing behavior to the point "relatives know Chloe exaggerates."

You don't have to put up with being lied about and having your character attacked. You didn't make a public spectacle about it either. You took her to the side and reprimanded her for her lies and behavior, which was needed.

servncuntt wrote:

May is wrong. Chloe is a grown woman. She knows what she did wrong and that’s why she apologized. Your daughter is going through something and instead of feeling sympathy, Chloe is adding unnecessary drama. NTA.

Groovymama98 wrote:


It isn't just what people her age do. I know a lot of people her age that are not mean girls. That's mean girl behavior. They only exhibit that behavior because it's allowed. Don't allow it, they either stop or move on.

Rare_Parsnip5838 wrote:

Are Chloe and Sarah at all close? Is Chloe jealous? Did Chloe have Miss Jane as a teacher and if so how was she treated?

OP responded:

"Double standard. Are chloe and sarah at all close? Is chloe jealous? Did chloe have miss jane as a teacher and if so how was she treated?"

The girls are not close at all. They typically don't talk at all during family events and keep to themselves or different people. My daughter and niece attend/attended different school districts. I doubt my niece has ever met Miss Jane or has any knowledge of her outside of me and my daughter.

Maybe it's possible that my niece is jealous of my daughter. Maybe my niece is simply bored. But I think it's irrelevant because she's too old to be creating drama.

aspralav wrote:

If Chloe was right about everything then she would have no reason to be embarrassed by the dressing down but apparently she’s embarrassed and knows that she just got called out. Yikes! 😬

OP is clearly NTA here.

Sources: Reddit
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