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'AITA for telling my parents to ask their foster children for help instead of me?'

'AITA for telling my parents to ask their foster children for help instead of me?'


"AITA for telling my parents to ask their foster children for help instead of me?"


My (34M) life could have been okay growing up except that my parents wanted to be good people. So they became foster parents. I think that was noble of them. Those kids needed help. The downside was that I got ignored. I got less attention than those kids because I was "independent" and didn't "need the help".

Gifts from my grandparents became gifts for the family. My grandparents put a stop to that by not buying me gifts but taking me out for instead. I got to go see movies and taken out for meals and weekend trips with my grandparents.

My dad's folks took me to Disneyland and my mom's mom and dad took me to NYC. My parents tried to get the money for this stuff given to me (them) instead. I begged my grandparents bot to do that.

I left the house when I was 17. I graduated early and got into a trade. My grandfather was in the union and he got me in. I've been at it for 17 years now and I'm doing okay. My parents are not. They ran themselves ragged taking in all those kids. Even the money they got wasn't enough to make up for their sacrifices.

They asked me for help and I said no. I know that if I give them money they will just waste it on the kids they took in after I left. I told them that they had a plethora of foster kids that they could ask for money.

My mom said she was disappointed in me and that she thought she had raised me better. I said I raised myself from about eight years old onward. My grandparents are tapped out too. My parents already owe them so much money.

My wife says she understands how I feel but thinks I'm being mean. My mom thinks I am holding a grudge from childhood. I refuse to speak with my father. But I assume he is still giving my old things to the new kids.

Here were the top rated comments from readers in response to the OP's post:


NTA. Your parents ignored you and tried to take money from you. You are not "holding a grudge from childhood." You are simply recognizing a pattern; that they never made you a priority.

They were irresponsible in their financial planning by taking in so many kids. That's not your problem. Tell your wife I do not think you are being "mean." You just don't want to be taken advantage of.


Friends of mine were active fosterers as their kids were growing up. Every time they got that call, they would have a family meeting to discuss if they should accept the kids. Any of their children could veto it.

I think they did sometimes, but their children were partners in their fostering. One foster child became a permanent member of their family. Not adopted, because they had a loving parent, but they couldn't conquer their substance abuse.

Tragically, that foster kid died in a random traffic collision, when she was was living with her "grandparents" in her twenties. I went to the funeral, and it was heartbreaking yet reassuring to see the kids mourning as if they had lost a sibling, which they had.

I just wanted to share this, because it's an amazing family. They may have helped as many kids as the OP's parents. Or maybe more, because they modelled a healthy family dynamic. OP's parents may have provided food and shelter, but they should the fostered children a different way to damage children from what they experienced at home.


NTA. It isn't your job to support them. There are limits and they'll have to realize that. If they can't afford to take in so many kids, and the payments for the foster kids do not make up the difference, then they will simply have to take in fewer. That's fine. It isn't great for the kids for them to massively overextend themselves anyways.


I can absolutely see what kind of negative feelings this would cause. "Why am I not good enough to get things that are just for me?" Your parents chose to take on the added burden of the foster children. You did not. You are not obligated to provide money to care for them. NTA.


NTA. You don't owe your parents anything. If anything, they owe you an apology and a childhood. Because before they took in any kids, they should've been taking care of the one that they already had instead of shoving you to the side like that. There's no nobility in that, just selfishness.


NTA They made choices and those choices were hurtful to you. You do not owe them anything. I am sorry your wife is not on your side. Maybe a sit-down chat about the abandonment you felt growing up and the resulting trauma it has left on you.

Your parents have to live with the choices they made, I am sorry they sponged off of their parents and put them behind. They sound very selfish even it they were trying to be helpful, you got the short end of the stick.


NTA...If you're holding a grudge, you're entitled to. Your parents still don't see how their choices affected you. You're as disappointed in them as they are in you, the only difference being you're not acting entitled to their money.


NTA of course, but please talk to your wife about her response and clear this up. Perhaps she is wrongly projecting and is worried that this could be a family pattern of parents/kids not having a good relationship, and thus is worried about her future. Point out that you and her don't plan to ignore any kids you may have or make them raise themselves starting at age 8 (right?).


NTA it's kind of your parents to take in foster children, but they did it at the expense of their own kid and their own family. If they cannot afford to continue doing so, the solution is not to borrow money from you or their parents, but to stop fostering, at least until they get their situation under control.


NTA. Hold your boundaries. The comment from your wife is interesting. Unless she's grown up in a similar dynamic, then she has no idea how you feel or the impact it's had on your life, and it's a pretty arrogant move to judge you.

Maybe she needs to stop and think for a minute that the sensible thing to do here would be to listen to you, acknowledge that she has zero experience of growing up in your family dynamic, and that she should probably respect your wishes on how you'd like to deal with this.

So, what do you think about this one? If you could give the OP any advice here, what would you tell them?

Sources: Reddit
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