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Woman forces mom to contribute to grocery bill; Mom says 'No. I'm starving myself for God.' AITA? 2 MAJOR UPDATES.

Woman forces mom to contribute to grocery bill; Mom says 'No. I'm starving myself for God.' AITA? 2 MAJOR UPDATES.

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When this grown woman living at home is furious with her religious mother and feels pressure to take care of her sister, she asks Reddit:

"AITA for asking my mom to contribute to the household food budget even if she's not "eating?"

I (27F) live with my mom (48F) and little sister (15F). My mom recently announced that she was planning to go on a fast to "hear from god" or whatever, and that she'd only be eating breakfast and lunch and no dinner, and that the meals that she would eat would be mostly vegetables or something like that.

She said that she was going to buy her own food, and told me I'd have to figure out how to feed myself and my sister, and that she would have no part in what we were eating. I could understand her asking me to pay for my own food, which I already do, and in fact I pay for most of the groceries and I pay more than half of the bills.

I just don't think it's right that she's washing her hands clean of feeding her own kid. My sister is still underage and she's just dumped the pressure of making sure she gets to eat on me.

It came to a head when we went to the store yesterday, and she refused to pay for anything other than the few groceries she'd bought for herself. I put everything back and walked out of the store, and she called me irresponsible and selfish.

I'm going to go back to the store on my own later today and buy essentials because I'm not going to let my sister starve, but that's just the issue. She says that if I loved my sister I'd see to her being taken care of, which is true, I will see to her having what she needs.

But, I feel that it's unfair to even ask me to be in charge of food preparation for a child that isn't mine, much less to cover the cost of groceries. Am I just being immature by asking her to contribute to the groceries even though she won't be eating them?

EDIT: I'm not saying that I never do anything to take care of my sister and I never want to. I do take an active role in raising her and my sister sees me as a second mom, but I volunteer to do everything that I do. I just dislike the idea of being forced to do something.

As for why I still live with my mom, I lived with her for a long time to help take care of my sister when my sister was still young. She said that she needed my income to qualify for an apartment after she divorced my stepdad.

Then my grandma got Alzheimer's and was bed bound, and my mom and I both were caregivers to her. It was easiest for all of us to live together while we were taking care of her. My grandma died last year and I've spent this year saving up and preparing to move. AITA?

Before we give you OP's two major updates, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

wizkhof writes:

NTA. Your sister is still underage so I would feel atleast taking that in mind your mother should contribute even a small bit to the budget considering she is her child not yours.

Just because you are an adult and capable doesn't mean you need to take responsibility of every family member and be told that you are selfish when all you ask is just a small contribution to the budget.

But ofcourse, I'm saying this taking into account that your mother earns well and is capable of contributing and just intentionally trying to do this under the excuse of making her child "self independent".

specialsaga7 writes:

NTA. I would plan a two week holiday from home and let mom figure her situation out herself. When I returned I would announce my plans for moving elsewhere soon. If nothing else, I would find a way to be anywhere throughout the day that wasn’t at home.

Being the backbone of the family you have tried to be has positioned you to be taken advantage of like this. Trying to do the right things for others can cripple your own opportunities if you let it go too far.

Your mother feels entitled to an easier lifestyle based on her care for her children and her mother. I get that it was rough on her with the addition of divorce thrown in.

But those are not situations you created. You were trying to lighten the load for people you love. You showed yourself to be equipped for the task, now mom’s dumping on you since someone has to be responsible.

She’s choosing herself right now, but that’s not a luxury she’s entitled to. She has to finish what she started before she can go find herself or live for herself.

professorvide writes:

NTA Your mother is responsible for her minor child, she cannot simply abdicate that responsibility simply because of her own diet.

She is acting very selfishly in expecting you to not only take on practical parenting responsibility but also expecting you to bear the financial burden. She is also being incredibly irresponsible in assuming she can just not feed her own child.

Use the money you collect from your stepdad to buy food etc for your sister (and if its not enough, and assuming your name is not on the bills, withhold money from what you give your mom for bills to cover any shortfall).

I would also suggest that you try to teach your sister to cook, if she can't already

liilmeme writes:

NTA. Your mom doesn't have sole custody. She shares it with you. The fact she is not providing solely for her own child is just wrong. Her own salary plus the $500 should more than cover their needs.

Why are you paying for most of the groceries and more than half the bills? You need to find a roommate and move out. You'll save money in the long run just by doing that. Instead of more than half, you'll be paying half, and you'll only have to pay for the food you eat.

If you want to try to save some more money, find a room to rent. There are people supplementing their mortgage payments by renting a room (utilities are included), and you have access to room, laundry, etc. It will most likely be less than what you are paying now, and you can save up for the next place.

wolfstar87 writes:

NTA. Your sister is 15 and your mother is refusing to provide appropriate care and support for her. Depending on where you live, I would absolutely be contacting the authorities (if in the US).

Potential avenues include requesting a 3 day psychiatric hold through the courts and reporting your mother to children’s services. This is not rational behavior.

If mom is not using child support to provide for the child, then you need to use that support for that. Since you collect the child support, you should keep it to provide for your sister. If mom asks for it, just tell her that since she is refusing to provide willingly for sister’s care, the child support money (provided for her care) will be retained to do so.

OP—you are not your sister’s parent. What your mother is doing is neglect. Your mother is required to provide for your sister as a minor. She doesn’t get to just not provide food because she doesn’t plan to eat. It doesn’t work that way. I’m so sorry you are in this position.

UPDATE 1:

As far as I know her finances are the same as they've always been, so I doubt this is some ruse to save money. She has however always been a deeply religious person. I'd even say she takes things to the extreme and frequently.

She definitely has some mental issues going on and has a lot of religious anxieties, and is always worried about doing the right thing and being holy. I don't think she's delusional or anything like that, just really indoctrinated.

To give an example of what is normal for her, I have COVID atm, and she told me that the reason I'm sick is because I have symbols of death in my room (a skull mug) and I'm allowing the devil to influence my health.

She watches Christian preachers who regurgitate this shit literally 24/7 and it's been like this since I was born. As far as I can tell, the fast she's going on is a recently popular thing among Christian influencers called the Daniel fast where you eat mostly fruits and veggies.

UPDATE 2:

My little sister is homeschooled so free lunch/school counsellors are not an option. In fact, my sis is homeschooled partially because my mom didn't want my sister exposed to "gay activity" in the schools as she puts it.

My sis is super isolated because of it and it's wearing on her mental health. I know my sister and I can tell she's depressed and in a really bad place because of how isolated she is.

I begged my mom to put her in school this year because it'd be good for her and also because I was starting college again and I couldn't keep up with my own studies and teaching my sister. But she wouldn't do it because she felt that the school my sister was assigned to was bad.

FYI My mom isn't trying to make us self independent or anything, she just says that she doesn't have to pay for groceries since she doesn't need them now. She earns not great but okay money, she doesn't make as much as I do. We contribute to most bills except internet semi proportionally to our incomes.

Readers wasted no time weighing in on these updates:

affectionatecupate8 writes:

This is a weird situation to me. It sounds very odd that just because your mom is fasting that would justify her not feeding her kid. It sounds like you put your share of work and income into the family.

Unfortunately, if she is refusing to feed your sister. Then you will have to step in and help. You can technically report this to child protection services if you really want. But, I would advise against that, for now.

The Department of Family Services takes reports very seriously which can lead to them visiting the house and possible legal issues for the mom.

With that being said, if this continues for a long period of time, like months, then you will have to make your best judgment. The right decision may be to call child protection services, at that point. , your mom is neglecting your sister by not providing basic food.

But, like I said, it is serious if you do tell child protection services. So, do so only when you are really ready to take things to the next steps and you tried everything to get your mom to provide food for your sister.

In conclusion, you are NOT the asshole for wanting your mom to pay for your sister's food. It sounds like common sense.

rogueaxiom writes:

Your mother is off loading mothering responsibilities for your little sister onto you. Your mother is doing this to make it harder for you to move out on your own.

It is likely that pain from your mom's divorce(s) and the death of your grandmother have not been properly adjudicated and instead replaced with irrational fears of hell, the gays, or whatever.

When you start packing your bags, your mother will accuse you of abandoning your little sister to guilt you into staying. The homeschooling is a ruse to enfeeble your little sister so at 18 years old, she won't be as independent minded as you (OP).

This is an abuse patten, full stop. One way to address it would be to bluntly state: "If you don't provide money for the food to feed your 15 y/o daughter, I will call child services and my sister and I will leave you alone to starve with your chosen God."

DO NOT let crazy people convince you that they are sane! Your mom needs help, or you have to expedite moving on. I hope you can do something to save your little sister from the madness but no judgements--"put your own oxygen mask on before helping others."

In the meantime--your mom fears being left alone. Use that fear to set ground rules for acceptable behavior.

("Mom: you and god can enjoy your veggies, but in this household we will split expenses/responsibilities because the 15 year-old is NOT expected to fend for herself!"), and be wholly prepared to make good on threats if behavior doesn't improve. NTA.

Looks like OP is NTA. What would YOU do in this situation?

Sources: Reddit
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