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Son keeps mom and dad's separate secrets to himself until they divorce; 'I'm ready to blow up this toxic marriage.' AITA? BIG UPDATE

Son keeps mom and dad's separate secrets to himself until they divorce; 'I'm ready to blow up this toxic marriage.' AITA? BIG UPDATE


When this man's family tension comes to a head, he asks Reddit:

"I have known my parents were cheating on each other for years, they found out and got mad at me? AITA"

When I was 11 I saw my mom kissing one of her coworkers. Since i didn't know what to do or even who to ask I ended up talking to that coworker. They worked at a sort of family restaurant so i went there pretty often, and one they i just told him i knew about their thing and straight up asked what i should do.

I don't remember exactly what he said, but i know he was really nice to me and adviced i stayed quiet so as not to hurt my father.

While it made sense to me, i spent around a year feeling bad for my father whenever i saw mom leave for work or stay there late. Then, one of the days mom stayed for the night at the reataurant, my father brought home another woman.

It made me have a sort of epiphany. I started thinking that they knew, and after some very productive internet research, i figured they were simply in an open relationship.

As i grew older i realised this wasn't the case. The two pieces of shit somehow managed to put two and two together after years and noticed i knew so they started using me to cheat more efficiently.

From around my 15th birthday, they started trying to get me to make excuses for eachother, ask one of them to go out for the day when they wanted the house alone, and even fg arrange meetings with their side pieces.

They're both some of the stupidest people i have ever met, but they somehow believe they're geniuses. I think this is what brought them together, they enable each other. But it also meant they were so busy thinking they were cheating gods to realise the other was doing the same.

At some point i stopped helping them, but i never said anything. It was such a normal thing that it never even crossed my mind telling them.

Last year i started uni and moved away, which meant they had to deal with each other on their own. I figured divorce was coming, didn't expect them to last long without having me around to keep them at peace.

You know the way two toddlers have to be kept under adult supervision to make sure they don't like, throw each other at upcoming traffic? That was what i had been doing ever since i can remember, stopping them not only from making the other mad, but also separating them whenever they had a bad idea that the other would enable.

I was right, they are going to divorce, and they decided to anounce this at a family gattering a couple weeks ago. There was a very funny silence when they said it, and it was broken by them starting to fight and trying to get the other to look bad.

My mother was Oh so hurt by his cheating, and my father was oh so hurt by hers. I couldn't help but laugh, it was ridiculous, that shit looked like children acting out a telenovela. When i said that yes, i knew, they both had been doing it for more than 7 years there was silence. I didn't find this one funny.

They got so mad at me. Started screaming that i ruined their marriage, that they could have worked it out if they knew sooner, that how could i have done this to them, bla bla bla.

I left and just went to my apartment. I think they only found out about recent cheating and they might have been mad because outed all those year, plus aparently i've "been playing both sides".

This two weeks since then i have been recieving calls from everyone in my family, a lot of them are just puzzled my parents would do that, others know them and are telling me that they're sorry for me. It seems unanimous though, that i am an asshole for not saying anything earlier.

Personally i just think that they deserved it. You're telling me that they could peacefully cheat, but not be cheated on? It's wild.

They're both dickheads in may ways, and they're perfect for eachother. The fact that they got divorced the moment they knew about the other cheating just proves me right.

They wanted it to be hidden, they wanted it to be behind the other's back. Not one single other person in this world deserves to deal with either of this two, they need to stick together to keep them from hurting others.

I don't really know what to do. They haven't talked to me at all in this two weeks, the only contact we've had has been through other people. I've never spent this long without talking to either of them. AITA?

Before OP provides an intense update, let's read some of the top responses:

saltwatersolution writes:

Id stay in touch with the people that are sorry for you, they seem like decent enough folks to me. Anyone that blames you, remind them that you were a little kid when you realised that both of them at it, what did you want 7 year old me to do exactly?

Let your parents deal with their mess. If their divorce proceedings gets really messy, it’s possible that you might be dragged into it- that’s why I recommend keeping in touch with the reasonable family members, you might need their ear or their support at some point.

Let the dust settle. Unquestionably there will be some important / significant date coming up that will mean that somebody responsible should reach out and do something- I suspect that’s highly unlikely though.

Your opinion of your parents is probably rightly low. You may not wanna deal with or associate with them at all and I can’t blame you for that. But do consider the future and what that looks like and possibly how petty and stupid they might be? Like are you supporting yourself totally right now, are you expecting to be part of your parents will, inheritance? Etc.

That’s why I’d take some council from sensible, supportive voices from your wider family.

It’s a chance for both your parents to start afresh and sort their shit out and maybe find happiness or fulfilment with someone they actually wanna be with. I hope they can see that and with that, I hope that they find value in you as well.

Ride it out as best you can, Maybe observe from a distance, write down details and turn it in a tv show, someday. Best of luck and none of it is your fault. Your parents are indeed a pair of dickheads.​​​​​​

tottlejones writes:

you were a child when this happened. a child. children want to believe their parents, even if they know their parents are bad/weird/not normal. i believed, until i was 17, that “fisk” was a bad word, all because my dad said it was. i knew he was a bad person, but i still believed him because he was in a position of authority.

they used you for their own personal gain. they used you to lie to each other. that’s not something parents are supposed to do. that’s fd up beyond belief, but you seem to have a good head on your shoulders and like you know that, so that’s a good start. (certainly a better start than what these two grown ass adults have.)

parents are supposed to model healthy relationships for their children. that’s how we’re supposed to learn - by observing, by seeing. if that’s their best attempt at modeling a healthy relationship, god help them, because they deserve whatever consequences they’ve got coming.

they cannot and should not use you as a scapegoat, unless you completely glossed over an occasion where you held them at gunpoint and forced them to cheat. this is not on you, and the schadenfreude is real with this one.

ducttapeonfleak writes:

It looks like just as they relied on you to keep the peace, they're also relying on you to take responsibility for their failing marriage.

You are in no way responsible for their marriage breaking up, and it's disgusting that they're trying to put that burden on you. If you had told them when you found out (which was NEVER your responsibility and it's horrible to put that on a child), they'd blame you for breaking apart their marriage by telling the truth.

I know we can't post links here, but I highly recommend that you pick up a copy of Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents by Lindsay Gibson. It has some really great advice on how to build a happy and healthy life in spite of your parents.

Remember: your parents are adults who ultimately have to live with the choices they've made, even if those choices didn't turn out the way they wanted. You aren't responsible for their emotions, and you sure as hell aren't responsible for their marriage.

ohsweetmuffins writes:

I can relate but I told my Dad. I was in Elementary and my Mom for whatever reason had me and my 2 siblings sitting in the back seats of the car when she started making out with her guy friend.

She also had another lady friend in the car that was trying to block of from seeing her do that. She was sitting the the middle seats and I remember her saying something like they are just playing.

Sometime later my Dad sat me on his lap and asked me if my Mom was kissing other guys. He was physically/verbally abusive and I remember being scared of him. I told him what my mom did and they got in a fight.

I don’t talk to either of them and have NC with both. Parents shouldn’t involve their kids in their affairs. It’s traumatic to see your parent cheat especially at a very young age. Wtf is wrong with these ppl.

catmocatmo writes:

Wow. How these two emotionally stunted, oblivious, and selfish people managed to make such a smart kid is beyond me.

You were wise beyond your years, even at 11. It’s so unfair that they basically robbed you of your childhood and knowingly put you in that position over, and over, and over again. Let alone blaming their failed marriage on you!? That’s insane.

They both sound like narcissists. Why is was it a child’s responsibility to act like more of an adult than the adults in question? Why should you have known exactly what to do and how to handle it?

You did the best you could with the info you had at that age. Shame on them for making any of this your burden to bear.

Go NC with these so called parents who are more willing to throw you under the bus than take the responsibility for their actions. Anyone else who takes their stance on it should also be threatened with being cut out. I’m so sorry you’re dealing with all this now - and then. You did nothing wrong then, and you’re not doing anything wrong now.

emilycolor writes:

I am 100% on your side and they deserve to sit in time out until you decide they can behave again.

My mother has been cheating of her husband (he's not my dad) for 15 years. I used to be all swept into her mess too, listening to all her bullshit and being her unpaid and abused pseudo therapist.

It feels so good to get away from that!!! I'm glad you have your own place to be, separate from them. The rest of your family sucks too - children are not responsible for the actions of their parents.

A normal adult in this situation would say to you, "wow. It sounds like you had more going on than we knew about. Are you okay?" It might take some of them a while to realize that you were an unwilling participant, but I'm sure some won't - your parents learned it from somewhere.

Enjoy your peace and quiet! You are the winner in this situation, because you see them for who they are and you don't have to deal with whatever you don't want to.

OP provides this major update:

Let’s start this the typical reddit way, thank you all so much for the support and comments, most of them gave me so much courage to just step away from the situation.

The ones that didn’t were those that mentioned how different I was from my parents or how glad they were I didn’t turn out like them. Those comments made me feel guilty, because I might actually be just like them.

Not in the cheating way, that’s fg disgusting, but in the manipulative pos way. Even thought, I doubt either of the dumbasses have the ability to properly manipulate anyone but a child.

So, actually getting to what happened. I went on ignoring everything for a couple days, it’s exam season after all. I wanted to take full advice from here, I just didn’t know who I could talk about this with in real life.

But on friday I was talking to a professor and mentioned all of this. She told me that I should look into possibly taking them to court for psychological damages and that sort of thing.

That same day I got an email from my dad’s lawyer requesting a dna test. The cousin I’ve kept in contact with all this time told me that my dear mother admitted to cheating before I was born, so I may not be my father’s child.

Honestly I don’t give a shit, in fact I’ve been looking into changing my full name and transferring to another uni far away from here, so didn’t care, but coupled with my professor’s idea it made me realize something. I could f them up a little bit. A lot of people think revenge is stupid, I think it only is that way if you let it consume you.

I spent a night awake planning this but it ended up being so easy. I replied to the email from the lawyer, but not to him. I replied to a joint account my parents had, told them how I didn’t see them as my parents (regardless of biological bonds...

so I would not be taking the test), how I was waiting for their divorce, how much better it’d be like that… It just went on.

I know they read it, because I got responses from both of their lawyers. F, it made me so mad that even after reading all that shit they didn’t talk to me.

Then, on saturday evening I had lunch with my uncle (mom’s brother and dad’s best friend) and his wife. They were supposed to be on my side, they were the ones who told me they were sorry for me.

I told them about how I planned on taking my parents to court so that they would have to at least still pay for the rest of my degree, but I also told auntie how I was planning on posting about all they’d done.

I asked them not to tell my parents, and “confesed” how I had been planning their divorce so that I could get money on advance, without waiting for either of them to die.

It almost made me sick, saying all this bullshit. But it worked, not even a day later and the entire family was turning against me, even my cousin seemed a bit put off but she lives for the drama I guess, so she still talked to me.

A fg family full of rats, not a single trustworthy soul. I mostly confirmed it to some of the people who talked to me, telling them about how I really wanted the money and couldn’t care less about my parents.

I was contacted by the lawyer, now apparently “their” lawyer, and with the help of my professor we crafted a contract were they would give me right now enough to finish my education (it was way more than just “enough”, but I wanted it to be as bad as possible), we wouldn’t have contact again and I would give up the right to sue them for this reason in the future.

It took them two fg days to announce they’d be renewing their vows, now this time “without a devil by their side”. They said that they could work through anything if they had each other. They have each other, but they don’t have me anymore, that’s the curse they’re disguising as a blessing.

I know for a fact that they won’t divorce now. They already tarnished they’re perfect little reputation by publicly admitting that they cheated, but they fd with they’re own egos by going back on their word and not actually divorcing, there’s not a single possibility now that they admit they were wrong again.

They cursed each other when they met, they passed the curse onto me and now they took it back. They are, once again, getting stuck in a loveless marriage that’s filled with hate and resentment, but this time around they don’t have a middleman. They’re going to make themselves miserable, and I’m so happy about it.

Sure, they may have taken being a little girl away form me with their bullshit, but I sure feel like one now, watching with glee as the two people I resent the most bind themselves to one another permanently.

The best part is knowing that, if they were at any point even remotely decent people, they could so easily get out of this. But no, they never will, because they’d rather rot in that misery than admit they fd up.

They got exactly what they wanted. They’re the victims, the poor souls who were soooo in love that they couldn’t see through it. It’s perfect, at this point it’s too late for them to do anything, even if they do realize what I did.

What are they going to do? Admit they’re not the victims? That I played up how bad I was to make them look better? That there’s no real love there?

No. They wont. They will not realize, because right now they’re riding the high of getting what they wanted, and by the time it fades away they’ll be like two bulls in a pit.

Too busy fighting to think about anything else. If they do realize, they won’t tell. Why would they? Who would even believe it when all I’ve done is try to prove them right?

As for me, my professor has been a life saver. She helped me gather the paperwork I needed to transfer to another uni and got me in contact with the amazing lawyer who helped me write that contract.

I needed it to be a contract, if we had gone to court over this I would have had to deal with this frs for so much longer.

On top of that, well, a contract that seems entirely made by me makes me look so much worse than a decision made by a judge. Right now I’m trying to focus on passing all my finals, but I’ll update again if I happen to be wrong and they do divorce.

I’m sorry to those who assumed I wasn’t like them. I wanted them to suffer the way I did, and I truly believe dealing with each other (or having to admit they were wrong) is they worst suffering I could inflict on them. So yeah, I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

What do YOU make of this harrowing situation? Any advice for OP?

Sources: Reddit
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