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'AITA for telling my sister that I don't care about the baby she lost?' MAJOR UPDATE

'AITA for telling my sister that I don't care about the baby she lost?' MAJOR UPDATE


The truth finds a way out, but sometimes, that way is laced with paiful words.

"AITA for telling my sister that I don't care about the baby she lost."

I (20m) and my sister (23) have been very close since she lost her baby. She lost the baby at the end of 2022, when she was about 5 months pregnant. Obviously our whole family was shocked and very supportive initially. However I really tried to help her through this and get her back on her feet. Coming to her apartment to clean, and cook her food. It also doesn’t help that her baby daddy left shortly after.

My sister was unable to work because of her depression, so my family would help chip in and pay her bills. She remained like this for about 7 months when my parents told her that they couldn’t no longer support her, when all she does is lay in bed (and smoke a lot, like 24/7, but they don’t know that), and that she at least needs to look for a job.

She lashed out and said she needs their support now more than ever. Regardless of them, I began to solely supporting her. Mind you I still live with my parents and attending school. That brings us to last Friday, I have about 3 semesters left of school and money has been getting tight. I told my sister that I really need to start saving, and that she needs to get a job, or just move back in.

She lashed out on me, saying that I could never understand (100% true) and that I was a terrible brother for even mentioning it. I said excuse me? I’ve paying for your bills for over a year, and have been the only one trying to help her get over this. She began yelling at me and calling me terrible names. I just snapped and said idgaf about her d*ad baby. I did none of this for that baby.

I helped her because I love my sister, I want what’s best for my sister, I want her to recover. I told her this and just she started attacking me. I just left. The next morning my parents sat me down, and told me what I said was very wrong and rude. I explained what happened and how I still continued paying her bills after they stopped.

They just were quiet, and then just left. My mother grabbed my shoulder and told me that my sister started apply for jobs.

I really feel bad, but also to a certain degree it worked and she is at least looking to work. I know my sister will forgive me eventually but I still feel bad. AITA?

Commenters had a lot to say in response.

IHadAnOpinion wrote:

You shouldn't have said you don't care about the baby...but. But she was clearly in a hole she had no intention of climbing out of, and sometimes the only way to help people like that is to toss in a stick of dynamite and blast them out, which is precisely what you did. The question is how much did it help, and I have a feeling the answer is "not a whole lot."

ESH, especially your parents for essentially letting your sister vegetate in a pot of grief rather than get her into some kind of counseling or therapy.

EDIT: Striking incorrect info.

OP responded:

You know you bring up an off topic point. She has been in therapy since shortly after losing her baby. So I’m wondering why the therapy has had no progress and how is her therapist just fine with her like this, without offering additional help. Idk sorry.

AgnarCrackenhammer wrote:

NTA. You probably could've handled the argument with your sister better, but you went way above and beyond to support her and honestly it sounds like she was taking advantage of you. At the end of the day were all human, and financial stress combined with being insulted by the largest source of said financial stress is enough to push anyone to the edge.

OP wrote:

Btw I have paid for my sister's therapy (off and on) since she lost the baby. And solely after my parents cut her financially.

Rosebud5054 wrote:

NTA. I’ve lost four babies, two sets of twins during fertility treatments with my husband. We have grieved for years…..roller coaster of ups and downs. But, no one else has ever financially supported us, taken us in or allowed us to wallow in our pain for too long. Nor, have we allowed ourselves to do that. We are still grieving and probably always will, but we have to keep moving forward, too.

What helped the most? Friends who would listen…journal writing, crying when I needed to, but I have always, always wiped my tears away when it was time to and gotten up to keep moving forward. That is imperative for recovery of a loss. You’ve been a great brother and your family should be proud of you. I hope they are.

VogonShakespeare wrote:

Unfortunately I think ESH. I 100% understand why you snapped, I probably would have snapped too. However, bringing up her dead baby is a line I wouldn’t have crossed. Yell back, call her all the names right back, blow off steam or whatever.

Your relationship would likely recover from all that. Siblings fight. After a dead baby comment, your relationship might never be the same again. That being said, I think your sister is at the point where continuing to pay for her is enabling her, and she needs professional help that you can’t provide.

I don’t think she’s maliciously planning out how to take advantage of you, just that she’s so deep in her depression and anger that her state of mind is “I don’t have the energy for this right now and since I don’t absolutely have to do it to survive I am not going to do it” as far looking for a job/reclaiming her life goes.

And her emotions around losing her baby are valid. Her actions towards yall and refusal to process her grief is not.

Kristen242008 wrote:

I'm gonna go with NTA. Before anyone comes for me, I lost a baby in 2009. I know how she is feeling. You can't expect anyone to pay your bills for you though, and with her attending therapy (like OP said in the comments), and still no progress being made after this long.

It just seems like this is more being used as a crutch now.

OP, you're NTA for not caring about your sister's baby. It's hard for other people to love a baby that they never met.

As the mom, we love that baby from the moment we get that positive test. You can't expect other people to do that though. You're kinda an AH for saying it to her, but I understand why you did. I hope your sister is able to get her life back together. She may need to seek a new therapist though. This one doesn't seem to be doing much.

OP responded:

Thank you very much for sharing your experience, I am very appreciative.

Safe_Community2981 wrote:

NTA. The soft approach wasn't working. Even the mildly-hard approach - i.e. your parents bowing out of supporting her - wasn't enough. She needed a true shock to the system to get her life restarted.

Honestly she never should've been supported like this. Idleness is the #1 enemy of moving on from grief. When you have no choice but to focus on continuing to live you move on because you have to. Wallowing in grief is a luxury, and one that doesn't improve anyone's life.

RatLamington wrote:

NTA. Probably the only way she could’ve been shocked into getting her life together again instead of continuing to live in a dark hole, expecting everyone around her to enable it.

A day later, OP shared an update.

I am very thankful for all the women who shared their experiences and gave me an insight on how my sister is feeling that I would’ve never been able to have. For that I am extremely grateful. My sister came over for dinner, we didn’t make much contact in the beginning. Our parents didn’t try to make us talk nor bring up our last argument. Dinner was very awkward with very little conversation.

We finished eating and my parents left to clean the mess. Which left me and my sister, we made some small talk when I just offered to go outside to talk. Once we were outside I immediately apologized for what I said, but she cut me off before I could finish. She said she was thankful for me and everything I have done for her. We continued to talk till it was late.

She brought up how she applied for 3 jobs in our area. We ended our conversation talking about how stuff happens and sometimes you can only do anything besides pick yourself and move forward , and try not to look back. She hugged me, (no tears) said thanks and left. I will still continue to pay her bills till she gets back on her feet. The bad blood seems to be gone.

At this point I’m not sure if regret what I said, but the damage doesn’t seem impactful. I appreciate all the people who commented.

The internet was quick to respond to the update.

MichaelAngelo42069 wrote:

I’m glad it turned out okay for you and your sister. Sometimes people need a “wake up call” in order to break the cycle and get out of deep hole that we call depression (or life).

You did that for your sister. You got her out of that hole.

She’ll probably think about that moment from time to time and she’ll grateful that you were there for her, in possibly the worst part of her life. That’s something to be proud about. I know you’ll probably still feel bad about what you said, but sometimes you have to be the AH when no one else is willing to be one themselves.

Old-Break5856 wrote:

This is such a sweet resolution. You’re a very good brother. I’m glad you guys were able to talk it out.

ATXLMT512 wrote:

Sounds like it worked out well. Best of luck to you all.

Exilicuada wrote:

Being basically bedridden for a year while undergoing therapy is extremely problematic! Like f#$k all those commenters at that point I'd be looking for legitimate inpatient care facilities or something. Long term bed rot is not a treatment for depression, it perpetuates it.

Primary-Proposal-967 wrote:

What manner of therapy was she getting that didn't push her to not just stay in bed? My very first therapy session, my therapist told me to try leave the house for at least 10 minutes everyday. I had been lying in bed in the dark for months.

She said to basically go out and touch grass. I believe that alone set the ball rolling towards getting better. I know therapy is different for everyone but being almost vegetative is usually one of the first things addressed.

IncrediblePlatypus wrote:

This just sucks for everyone. But the only real AHs are the parents because they let both of their kids down. I don't even think saying "I don't care about the baby" is bad - he didn't carry it, he didn't know it, he had no real connection apparently. Of course he's doing all he does (and f-, that's a LOT for a 20 year old still in school!) out of love for his sister, not for a baby he didn't know.

The situation and the person he said it to wasn't great, tho. But apparently she needed to hear it and it gave her a kick to at least look out of the quagmire of grief. She needs distraction and partaking in regular life to lessen the grief instead of spending 24/7 thinking about what happened. And I absolutely understand wanting to see at least some results from a year of therapy.

I would expect at last being able to get out of bed every now and then or to be at least somewhat able to do things - because if the impact of her grief is so bad that therapy isn't doing s**t, her therapist should have explored medication. If only to give her a break! I hope she'll get better. I hope OP's parents step the f#$k up. I hope nice things happen to OP because he deserves them.

Sources: Reddit
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