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Teen has a 'meltdown' on Christmas Day, makes dad's wife cry. 'She is not my mother.' AITA?

Teen has a 'meltdown' on Christmas Day, makes dad's wife cry. 'She is not my mother.' AITA?


"AITA for the meltdown I had on Christmas day which caused my dad's wife to cry?"

The background starts with my mom dying. I (17F) was 11 and my sister's were 16 and 18. Our dad met his second wife a couple of years later (when I was 13). The expectations for my relationship with her and my sister's were very different.

My sister's were expected to be civil but if they weren't close it was no big deal. But almost everyone (minus my sisters and minus my mom's family) expected me to see my dad's wife as some second mother or maternal/parental figure. They got married when I was 14.

My dad's wife wanted me to divide Mother's Day between my sisters and maternal side with her. My sisters were not expected to do the same. But she would say she wanted to celebrate the day with her kid.

She signed us up for mother/daughter things. She would get hurt when I didn't want to go and would never ask my sister's. I asked her before why she expected me to do these things with her but she never invited my sisters.

She said she was raising me and wanted to be a mother presence in my life but they were grown. I told her (and my dad on separate occasions) that I didn't want or need and wouldn't accept someone else into that kind of figure. I was ignored.

I had a small run in with my sisters when dad was getting married because I said he shouldn't and they said he should be allowed to move on and mom would want him happy. When I explained what was going on they realized why I was feeling that way. They tried talking to dad but it did no good.

My dad's side of the family would all make comments that I was lucky to have another mother figure, or how I don't seem to give her the care and consideration she deserves. They would ask why I seemed to spend no time with her of my own free will. Or why I was never loving toward her.

My dad told me I should show her more love and affection and he told me I made her feel left out when I didn't tell her stuff or when I made plans with others but not her.

I know some people would love to have someone like this in their lives. But I want the same relationship my sisters have with her. But more is expected. So Christmas Day came and everyone was at our house for Christmas (minus my mom's family).

My dad and his wife gave me a card "from my parents" and my sisters got them with "dad and his wife." Then when it became time for family photos we got one with the three of us and dad but then my grandparents wanted me in the family one with my dad and his wife but my sisters weren't expected to be in it. I tried to step out and my dad's wife said it wasn't a family photo without their kid.

This was the point where I lost it and I told her I am not her kid, she is not my mother figure, that she is dad's wife just like she is to my sisters and I want it to be that way.

I said I do not love her and hate how they all treat her like she suddenly became a parent to me. My sisters were on my side but my dad was furious and his wife cried and cried harder as I continued. AITA?

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

Fardelismyname said:

NTA. You were young when your mom died and honestly? You’re still young. You need time and guidance around mourning your mom and navigating this world. It’s not entirely unfair that your dad wanted to move on, or that a new member of the family (his wife) wants to forge a relationship with you.

What seems really tough is how you and your sisters have been treated differently and how you’re being pushed too hard to fall in line w the new family dynamic. You blew up.

People do that. Hopefully it will be a signal to your dad and step mother to take a step back and assess your needs (space, time, perhaps grief counseling) and meet them.

luniiz01 said:

NTA- I don’t understand people trying to force something… as long as people are respectful, nice, and chill. That’s good enough. Friendships can develops over time and maybe even change to more of a parent-offspring but it takes time it cannot be force…Ever. You were old enough to make your decisions…

LenoreNevermore86 said:

NTA. Feelings and a close bond can't be forced. Your father and stepmom insisted, berated, pushed and let relatives berate you. I understand you had a meltdown, after talking to them repeatedly and being ignored, you can reached your limit.

Pale-Condition1056 said:

NTA - I absolutely hate how parents try to force their new partner onto their kids as a new parent figure. STOP DOING THAT!!! It doesn’t work!!!

ececacademic said:

NTA. You had repeatedly told your parents how this was affecting you and how little you liked the way they were handling things. They ignored your boundaries and continued to push their wants ahead of your own. You having a ‘meltdown’ was inevitable. It’s a shame it happened on Christmas, but tensions are always higher on holidays so it’s not surprising.

Honestly, I’d suggest trying to get more adults on your side though. Speak to your paternal grandparents about how differently you and your sisters were treated, how your bio mom is being trodden all over for dad’s wife’s happiness. How you’re not happy.

And ultimately, whether your paternal family side with you or not, continue pushing boundaries and pushing back when they try this on you. One day they’ll finally come to understand.

Brittaya said:

NTA at all. She just waltzed in and decided you belonged to her as some sort of accessory without a mind of your own at 11 years old. Never mind letting a child grieve or come to terms with everything.

You’ll be able to move out soon and start your own life and then decide if it’s worth it to have these people around who decided to steamroll right over your emotions and guilt you for not playing the part they assigned you. I hope you’re able to access some therapy soon OP, and I’m sorry for everything you went through.

Everyone was on OP's side for this one. What's your advice for this teenager and her family?

Sources: Reddit
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