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Teenager confronts dad and stepmom; 'You KNOW you play favorites.' AITA? UPDATED

Teenager confronts dad and stepmom; 'You KNOW you play favorites.' AITA? UPDATED


When this teenager confronts her dad and stepmom, she asks the internet:

"I Confronted My Dad & Step Mom About Their Favoritism. AITA?"

I’m new to this, so bear with me. I (17F), have had seperated parents since I was seven. When I was 11, my dad married my current stepmom. Things were already kind of tough before they were married, (she was always controlling and when they had their son she became even worse).

While I’ve learned to deal with her controlling behavior and such, I can’t help but feel she and my father both have proclaimed my half brother their favorite. I didn’t really ever mind so much, he was their kid, we were only my dads. However this was my last Christmas I am going to be forced to visit them.

We gathered in the morning for presents and as my cousin passed out presents, mine and my two other biological siblings all had around six presents. My half brother had twenty. Again, I didn’t care about the amount. It’s Christmas, and whatever we get I’m going to be grateful for.

Things only got frustrating for me when my half brother started dancing around the house announcing the fact that he had more presents than anyone else.

My younger brother (14) has never been one to deal with it all that well and got annoyed, told my half brother to stop bragging, and then got scolded for “being mean to his brother on Christmas morning. I was so upset that he had got in trouble for that.

Anyways, come the day after Christmas, and more family arrives. We do a second Christmas, and one of my stepmom’s sisters hands is a present.

Half brother complains until she hands him a present, and gloats when my stepmother’s other sister hands him a gift but not us. Again, I get that he is there biological son, but I mean she handed him $50 bucks right in front of our faces.

Anyways, later that night I’m reading a book on the couch and my stepmom tells me to load the dishwasher and I comply, she gets easily angry and often takes my phone if I don’t do what she asks.

While we do our separate things in silence, my half brother comes in showing off his $145 cash in his wallet. He was talking to me and said “My parents are rich. Now I’m rich, you’ll never be like me.” I took that as a direct insult to me and my mother. I told him to be nice, and that was a messed up thing to say.

My stepmom scolded ME and saidIm too grown up to be “bullying a little boy.” Like???? Anyways, I blew up on her and said I was sick and tired of the blatant favoritism in this family and that I couldn’t wait to turn eighteen and leave this hellhole forever.

She started crying, and my dad walked in, immediately calling me an asshole for hurting her feelings. So reddit, AITA?

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

fafa writes:

This is so horrible. Are kids in America not allowed to decide not to see a parent of they don't want to? I stopped talking/seeing my Dad at fourteen, gave him another chance at sixteen and haven't spoken to him at all since I was nineteen.

It's been great and glad I could make the decision for myself. I feel so sorry for kids that have to put up with this just because 'it's your family'. Kids should get a say in who they interact with.

idrow writes:

At 17 she has no say where she lives and has to go to court? And at 18 she'll have more of a say in court? At 18 she'll be a legal adult and there won't be a need for court. This is all very strange.

Unless the mom is highly unfit, courts usually take the child's wishes into account when they're like 13. At 17, I can't believe there will be a courtroom event to address custody of OP.

fasrr writes:

I have a stepparent like this, she’s gotten a lot better since she quit drinking but she was a monster to me when I was a teenager and still lived at home. My dad never really defended me and I think it’s because he’s afraid of being alone.

He’s not a bad person and I know he loves my sister and I, he can just be selfish and cowardly and it makes me sad that he’s willing to sacrifice his relationship with his kids over it.

grayrock writes:

I'm so sorry. NTA. You are 17. It's time to learn the grey rock method, which will serve you well both with this family dynamic as well as later in life at work. It's how I survived my father and more recently, how I survived the most toxic situation imaginable.

Your half brother is getting a delight in your reactions and your step mom might be as well. The idea is to either agree or remove yourself from the toxic situation, stop sharing personal information, and just emotionally disengage. It became a game for me in dealing with my father.

And now, OP's update:

First off I want to say a huge thank you to those who reached out with advice and luck to give. I can’t appreciate the weight that you have lifted from me. I figured now that I’m home and some stuff has gone down, I’m going to give an update and also give some info I may have missed in my previous post.

First off: I never clarified that my half-brother (Dudley lol) is in fact 8. My dad and stepmom were married about two-three years after they had him.

Second: My stepmom (Petunia as you all would call her lol) has always been controlling and forced us to do chores, put our phones in another room at night, made rude comments on my appearance (ie makeup, weight, etc) and also has constantly made fun of my siblings weight or hobbies or such.

She’s an awful person, and has always treated us like shit. When her son was born, her favoritism for him was just another way to get at us.

Third: My mom and I have tried to talk with courts and with my father in general. It’s always gone bad, and my mom ends up feeling like it’s all her fault and drained of her money. Which is why I haven’t tried to go back to court. I hate doing that to my mom. When I turn 18, I have more of a say in court.

Fourth: Some of you seemed to think I was upset over the presents amount. While I did include that, it was an example of how my half brother acts with privileges like this, and I could care less about the amount! My younger bio bro was hurt, and I was obviously upset about that.

This is not an issue I’m furious over, and I would just like to add that I do not view my half brother as the source of the problem. I include what he taunts and says because that shows how he’s been raised, and shows what happens when I’m the one who gets in trouble.

Fifth: There were a few comments who said that it was logical to have favoritism from the stepmom to the half brother. I guess I didn’t really clarify, but the favoritism is frustrating to me from both her and my father.

She just happened to be the one who I snapped at. I get he’s her bio kid, but my father is bio father and he needs to not have that favoritism, but per usual, follows whatever the hell my stepmom does. He’s her puppet on her strings. Okay, I think that’s it! Onto the update!

Now that I’ve been home for a week, I finally brought up the confrontation with my mom. She was obviously proud that I’d finally stood up for myself, considering every time she said something on our behalf to my dad, she was told she was lying. I explained everything and she was practically fuming. But once again so happy Id finally said something.

This morning, she organized a potential court date, but she wanted me to be the one to tell my dad, before he finds out from anyone else.

So I called my dad literally 30 minutes ago or so, and basically told him how emotionally damaged I was from the years I’ve spent with him and Petunia. I told him they needed to fix their behavior if they wanted to keep a relationship with me or my siblings.

I told him we could even see a counselor. I told him that if he chooses not to do anything, we will all go no contact the minute we turn 18. (This was thanks to one of you giving me the ABC options) He blew up on me, cursing me and saying I wasn’t the daughter he raised me to be. (But I mean, thank God, otherwise I might be Dudley 2.0).

Anyways, needless to say the court date will happen, and my dad will hopefully see what he’s done to his children. Thank you again for the help and advice! It really influenced how this played out for me! I honestly don’t know if any of this would have been possible without you.

What do YOU make of OP's story? Any advice for her?

Sources: Reddit
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