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Woman refuses to send daughter to therapy, instead bans her BFF from coming over, 'mother knows best.' AITA?

Woman refuses to send daughter to therapy, instead bans her BFF from coming over, 'mother knows best.' AITA?


AITA for not being surprised that my niece doesn't listen to my sister?

Antique-Garage8417 says:

My sister was a single mom to my niece Ellie for 8 years. Then she met her husband, Rich, and very quickly she ended up pregnant. Ellie really didn't know Rich at all by that point, and she wasn't thrilled. My sister was of the opinion that Ellie would come around in time.

After baby Liam was born, my sister set up these cute photo shoots for Ellie and Liam, and she involved Ellie in the pregnancy, which was something Ellie resisted doing. But my sister basically gave her no choice.

When Liam was 1, my sister found out that Ellie and her BFF Hazel were talking about the new half-siblings in their lives. Hazel's half-sister was born a couple of months before Liam was, and neither considered their half-sibling a "real sibling."

My sister heard Hazel and Ellie say they didn't love or care about their half-siblings, their stepdads, and how they didn't have a real family anymore. Hazel claimed her mom replaced her dad and that she would never want the replacement family. Ellie told Hazel she missed it being just her and her mom and she never wanted a dad like her mom seemed to think.

She also said Liam was just a baby; she didn't get all affectionate and protective like most of the family said she would. She said if Rich took Liam and left for good, she would be kinda glad.

My sister contacted Hazel's mom and stepdad, and she told them Hazel was no longer welcome in our house. When Ellie didn't change toward Liam afterward, she told her she could no longer see Hazel anymore, and their friendship was over.

My sister told me about it at the time, and I asked her how she was planning to do that and wouldn't therapy be better. She said they just feed off each other too much. She went to their school to try and get them separated, but the school refused. She wanted me to pay for Ellie to go to a private school to get her away from Hazel, but I said no.

Now Ellie is 15, and, surprisingly few except for my sister and Rich a small bit, Ellie and Hazel are still friends at school and have never lost contact. Apparently, neither girl feels very different either. Ellie now has a new half-sister, Olivia, and Hazel has two half-brothers.

My sister lost her mind when she found out, and when she confronted Ellie, she was told by Ellie that Hazel is the most important person to her anymore, and she would never give her up for them. My sister grounded Ellie and has tried to make her want to stay away from Hazel, but it doesn't work.

My sister has brought this up a few times since finding out, and the other day she accused me of never appearing surprised that Ellie disobeyed her. I admitted that I wasn't, and I always knew trying to take Ellie's best friend from her would be something Ellie wouldn't go along with.

My sister accused me of not being honest with her (by not saying this sooner) and of wanting her marriage and family to fail. She also accused me of being arrogant and thinking I know Ellie better than she does. She also claimed I knew and had seen the girls together. Which is untrue. AITA?

Here are the top judgements from the post:

Little_Manager2727 says:

NTA (Not the A%@^ole). Telling someone not to do something especially at that age will just increase their desire to do it. Unless the friend was getting the daughter in trouble for actions, she shouldn't have tried to separate her best friend from her.

All she has done is make it so her daughter won't feel like she can't go to her mother and introduce hiding things like a friendship when her mother isn't around. Her fault, not yours. If anything you have strengthened or kept your relationship good with Ellie for being someone that she can talk to and trust later down the line.

Is-this-rabbit says:

NTA. Your sister has a fantasy about a happy blended family. It's a fantasy. Your sister was aware of Ellie's feelings and tried to force change by removing Hazel. Even if she had succeeded in removing Hazel from Ellie's life, Ellie would have continued to feel the same and possibly met someone else in a similar situation to share her thoughts.

Ellie's behaviour generally would have given clues that her feelings hadn't changed. Some families blend, some don't, therapy sometimes help. Your sister needs to wake up and face reality.

aquavenatus says:

NTA. Your sister has ruined her relationship with her eldest daughter. She just hasn’t realized it yet. That poor girl.

MenchitWolfram says:

NTA (Not the A^#@ole). You can't command someone, especially a child or teenager, to feel differently. It almost always works to reinforce the existing feeling. What you need is to let them talk it out, and explain it, and come to the conclusion on their own that their feelings make them a%^*oles and want to change (a real psychologist will say this better than me).

Of course this would happen. But also, of course she would have hated you for ever speaking up against her stupid decisions.

Imaginary-Path7046 says:

Ah yes, blame everybody for your child resisting something you FORCED her to accept and not listening to her thoughts and feelings in the matter.

NTA. Your sister needs to get her head out of her bottom. This is not about her, this is about her daughter being driven away by her (sister's) behaviour. If she keeps this up she will damage her relationship with Ellie permanently

Tz2AxG says:

So blaming her issues on Hazel didn’t work? I can’t believe she’s still trying to blame an innocent girl instead of working on her family. Your sister needs a reality check before she loses Ellie for good.

What do you think? Was OP right to not be surprised by Ellie's behavior?

Sources: Reddit
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