AITA (Am I the as*hole) for calling my stepmother delusional for thinking I would change my mind on her adopting me?
My mom died when I was 6 years old. My dad ended up turning to one of his good friends, Ana, and they ended up getting married when I was 7. Ana brought up the idea of adopting me the day of the wedding. It was something my dad was all for but I went nuts when she mentioned it to me and I kinda spoiled the rest of the wedding.
For the next year we did this really intense therapy where I was told over and over again, by the therapist and them, that I needed a mom, that it would provide safety for me, and that it was not a betrayal of my mom to accept another loving mom into my life.
The therapist put the recommendation into the court to approve it, but when the judge spoke to me, I told him that I would run away, and that I would do everything to never come back. I was 8 at the time and meant business.
He asked me why I didn't want to be adopted. He listened. And when he addressed the court again he denied the adoption request and told my dad and Ana that until I was on board no adoption would be approved in his court. They did try again, requesting a different judge, but received the same response.
I was asked constantly to change my mind. Ana would put her all into trying to fill the place of a mom in my life. Every time I told her she could never be my mom she took it as a challenge to try harder, and better, and she would dedicate so much time to me it was crazy.
I never appreciated it because instead of just being Ana, and instead of my dad telling her to just be Ana, she saw mom as the only thing she wanted. Even when she had kids of her own, I was their oldest son, I was her son, her boy, she'd call herself a boy mom, etc. Whereas I have never called her mom.
If we're being honest I don't even love her after all these years. I see her as more of an intrusive family member who won't stop. My relationship with my dad is also not the best because I don't like that he wouldn't take no for an answer, and that he was so quick to try and push an adoption. Even after I told him I would rather be with grandparents, or an aunt/uncle or close family friend to Ana if he died, he insisted being with Ana and her being my mom was the best for me.
I turned 18 a few months ago and I ran like my ass was on fire to get away from dad and Ana. I lived with my maternal grandparents for a little while before moving in with my maternal uncle who lived near a really good apprenticeship I wanted to join. My paternal grandparents celebrated their wedding anniversary this past weekend and I was there.
While there Ana approached me and handed me papers for an adult adoption. She told me she loved me and she wanted me to know it was not too late, that she would still adopt me and she wanted to make our relationship official as mother and son.
I asked her how she could be so delusional when I have said no to being adopted for 11 years now. I told her I would not change my mind. She and my dad were so pissed at my choice of words and chaos ensued at the party. AITA (Am I the as*hole)?
Her continued insistence all these years and the way she goes about it is sus af. Is there a deeper and hidden reason for her insistence? What else does she stand to gain if you accept? Or lose if you refuse? Hold your ground. NTA.
OP LostConstruction492 responded:
I think she loses the fantasy she had in her head. I feel like she wanted to be the stepmother people talk about as being the good example, the one who had such a good relationship that she adopted her stepkid, that he loved her just as much if not more than his own mom who died, and that she was good enough to help me forget the pain of losing her and that she was enough to make all that fade away into a neatly wrapped family.
I also feel like she has issues with the being treated differently to my dad and my mom. Like she doesn't want to be less than, she wants to be the exact same, to have me love her the same, and treat her the same, and for it to be again, wrapped in a bow perfect.
I think you need to get a Mother's Day gift for Ana: a copy of the declaration by the courts that you have legally changed your last name to your late mother's maiden name. Rotten flowers and dead rubber rat with a card written with 'thinking of you' optional.
The irony is she would have had a better chance of getting something close to what she wants if only she'd been Just Ana all these years instead of trying so hard to replace your mom. I'm sorry your dad never put a stop to this nonsense.
But JanusMZeal11 suspects there's more going on:
It still seems fishy to me. I'd recommend getting a copy of your mother's will. Just incase there is some trust on it that grants of gives your 'mother' some economic benefit. I can see no other reason why an 'adult adoption' in this case makes any sense. Simply because this is too weird for anything else. And look into getting a restraining order from her, that will help too regardless.
And Corsetbrat agrees:
THIS!! That was my first thought as well. This much push from both dad and his 2nd wife, it just seems like there's is something important from mom's will that they are hiding, that the adoption would change.
MoonpieSonata had a lot of questions:
Has she ever done anything wrong to you? It sounds like she has tried to love and include you, but you are really standoffish. Your mother died, that's terrible, but she never raised you, you don't know how that would have turned out.
You are holding her memory and a fiction of what might have been, over a woman who you resent simply because she is there. You are angry at her because she is not your mother. But it sounds like she tried. And you sound ungrateful af. IMHO YTA (In my honest opinion, you're the as*hole).
And OP replied:
My mom is not fiction and she is more than a memory. She is my mom and I love her. She also didn't choose to leave me so to dismiss her role in my life is wrong. She will always be my only mom and the length of time she could do that changes nothing.