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Woman secretly messages her mom's birth daughter; 'I feel compelled to know her.' AITA? UPDATED

Woman secretly messages her mom's birth daughter; 'I feel compelled to know her.' AITA? UPDATED


When this woman is upset with her mother, she asks the internet:

"AITA for hiding from my mom that I've been messaging her birth daughter?"

Sorry for the weird title. But when my mom (46 F) was 21 she was married to some guy in the states who was cheating on her when she was pregnant.

She hated him and hated that she was having his baby, had a traumatic pregnancy, was really depressed and didn't like being a parent then so signed away rights to Elissa (25 F) some months after she gave birth. Elissa was adopted by her father's affair partner and raised by her.

My mom moved up north here to Canada, fell in love with my dad and married him when she was 30. She's had nothing to do with Elissa besides demanding she never contact her again after she tried to.

Last year my mom finally told me about Elissa but made it clear that she didn't see her as her daughter and that Elissa's mother was her father's wife. She also demanded that we not try to get them into any contact.

So that's cool and all, but I was really fascinated by this idea of a sister I never had. So I secretly started messaging her and even though she was hesitant at first, we've become good friends and I really want to meet her.

She's also become really successful in her field and works at the University of Toronto which is where I want to go. Ngl I really look up to her and would love to follow in her footsteps and Toronto's a lot better than the city we liv ein.

The problem was that I left my phone unlocked yesterday and my mom freaked when she saw that I was talking to her. She pointed out that she didn't want a reunion or me talking with her that we aren't family and doesn't want my siblings to know before they're my age.

I felt really bad because she started crying a lot like more than Id ever seen before. My dad told me it would be ok but hes the one who dropped me off at school even though its always her and I'm wondering if I was an asshole to hide me messaging Elissa from her instead of being open about it.

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

femalehuman7 writes:

Soft YTA. It is difficult for young people to understand that their parents are not their property, they are people who have lives outside of parenthood. For some reason Redditors cannot grasp that giving up a child for adoption is the most selfless act a person can commit.

To be clear, not only did you choose to satisfy your curiousity with no consideration for your mother's feelings, you put the adoptee at legal risk.

It is a crime in Ontario for an adoptee to have contact with the children of their birth parents without the express consent from the parent, even worse, you were a minor so technically she had illegal contact with a minor.

Think about that kiddo. Thousands of women ended up in counselling at the mere suggestion that the adoption law was being rewritten and they might be contacted by the child and their secret revealed.

Your mom shared the most traumatic event of her life and you made it all about you! Teenagers are selfish, you knew you were wrong but are too young to know just how badly you messed up.

I sincerely hope this doesn't destroy your mom and family. I also hope that if this does destroy your family you will not let it destroy you and that you understand you were too young and niave to understand the consequences of your actions. I am so sad for you and your mother. This is a horrid situation.

bust6 writes:

YTA. But lightly. You didn’t consider your mom’s feelings at all. You’ve put yourself in a really hard place here because you knew your mother didn’t want to be involved with this girl from the beginning and now you’ve said in comments you intend to force her into contact.

You can’t avoid the bride’s friend at her wedding if you’re the mother of the bride, for example. And now everyone is gonna wanna know at all these events why your mother is refusing to interact with her daughter. Does that sound pleasant for her?

You could have discussed all of this with her beforehand, but you chose to lie and sneak around because you knew you wouldn’t get the answer you wanted. Take this as a lesson for the future: lying and sneaking around behind people’s backs never ends well.

woofingtonspoof writes:

NTA. Some people are saying YTA because you went behind your moms back but what choice did you have. To be real she abandoned her own child because of her husbands actions but that was still her blood.

Now she wants to keep that same persons siblings away rather than deal with the pain she dealt out. She is only caring about her own pain, not her child’s pain or your pain of not being able to know your sister. I’m sorry but she is being very selfish.

knittingfairy writes:

NTA. I'll be honest, you are allowed to build your own relationship w your half-sister. No one plans to have her near your mother (as is right) and I do not agree that you should be banned from speaking to her.

It sounds kind of like your mom has unresolved trauma from that relationship and therapy could help her. It is fine that she doesn't want to know Elissa but I do not think it's ok for her to make that decision for you or, when they're older, your younger siblings.

littleblackb writes:

You are NTA. Your mother hid someone away from you for no other reason except her own shame and guilt. I understand that your mom had a horrible experience, but she needs to put herself into her DAUGHTER'S shoes. You might be the best thing in your sister's life right now.

I am adopted and I know that adoption trauma is very, very real. I suggest your mother seek therapy and that both of you join the Facebook group called Adoption: Facing Realities.

Your mom needs to read about what adopted children have been through. I don't want your mother to feel like she committed an unforgivable atrocity, but she needs to own up to her own actions. You in no way should feel bad. Of course you were going to speak to your sister.

What did she expect? Please help your mom see reason instead of allowing her firstborn daughter to continue feeling like she was unwanted and hated by her own birth mother and half-siblings. She doesn't deserve that. I get your mom didn't want her, but she shouldn't force her feelings upon you.

mackpaino8 writes:

NTA - no problem contacting family. I get that your mom wants no contact, but she can't control who you see/hang out with. Also a lot of times (in the states at least) you can get scholarships if you have family working at a college/university.

Not saying you should use this newfound relationship with your sister to get discounted college, but as a recent(ish) grad myself I know how costly higher education can be.

And now, OP's update:

Assuming all goes good between me and my sister, yeah I'd want her there for my wedding and for my kids and I want to be at her wedding whenever she has it. She doesn't want to see my mom any more than my mom wants to see her.

I mean this is like ten years in the future so I dont know what I'd do but idgaf thinking about it right now so I guess I'd just ask them to avoid each other.

I don't want to hurt any of them and I don't want to cut my sister off cause 'mom said no' is just going to hurt her really bad too. I don't want to hurt anybody. And I love my mom and I know she loves me and I don't think she'd ever try and make me choose between two people I love.

I really do love my mom a lot and I do think that hiding it was the wrong thing to do. I just wish I could make her happy again since this has been gnawing at me all day and I can't even focus on school cause of it.

Well I'm sixteen years old so maybe Im immature about cheating because I've never been in an actual relationship before so I don't know what it does.

I see now how much it hurt my mom even if I don't get it and I'm not going to try and make her do something she doesn't want to do. I apologized after I came home from school and she forgave me she knows I didn't mean to hurt her.

I only found out all the stuff about her being a success her job and Toronto recently. Up until a month ago I thought she was still in the states living with her dad.

OP's 2nd update:

Hey guys thought I'd update. First thing I gave my mom a giant hug like my little sister does and said sorry and she forgave me. Then I had a big talk with mom and dad about Elissa.

The first thing my mom asked was if Elissa wanted to meet her. She seemed sad when I told her that Elissa threatened to cut me off if I'd ever try to make them meet. Then it got to what I wanted from Elissa and I said I just wanted to be her sister to get to know her and be friends in real life and not just on the phone.

I did admit that I wanted to go to pursue the field I told them of at UofTcause of her. I could tell my mom was getting a bit mad but dad pointed out Elissa is really successful a good role model and a good mentor and to deny me her would only hurt my future so I had their permission.

My mom did bring up the points that you guys did like what if I graduate or get married and stuff. I admitted that I didn't know but I'd find stuff that made it better or find different ways.

I guess that hurt my mom so she said it's we'll deal when it happens but that she can work on her pain for me and if Elissa loves me she will too. I did have to promise not to tell my siblings (wasn't going to anyway) about Elissa.

Next time I talked to Elissa I told her that my mom found out we were talking and told her the whole mess that happened. She said she was glad that we could keep talking and it meant a lot to her that I want to be her sister.

I told her what my mom said about me getting married and she said they'd find a way and joked that she could just put on a balaclava mask for all events to avoid being seen.

Well on Christmas Elissa FaceTimedd and showed me a really pretty ring her boyfriend got her and said she was getting married and my present was tickets to see her in Spring Break and an invite to her wedding stuff in the summer. She did say if my mom said I couldn't go she'd understand.

I talked with mom and dad and I can go as long as I can take my older cousin with me (he's 25 and has known all this for years) and according to Elissa I can. She wants me to have a role in her wedding! Hopefully things aren't bad in march and I can go to Toronto.

Honestly since then its all been great. I talk with Elissa a lot more she's gotten me into a game called Age of Empires, she's helped me with my chemistry homework, mom's been going to therapy about her and started training me in tennis. And on Friday I got the invite card to her wedding and it was written for me as: to my sweet little sister! (have to hide it from my siblings tho)

So I guess that's me using my one update to tell you guys that I think its a happy ending.

Update 2:

I mean she's honestly one of the best people I've ever met. She sent me the diet plan she follows (she does crossfit) when I said I was starting tennis. I guess having a sister means a lot to her. I don't know if we'll ever be a big happy family but maybe they can be in the same room one day.

From what little my sister's told me, her mom always blamed herself for her and my mom not having a relationship. It was her mom that asked her to reach out and when my mom said no my sister was done with it.

She's told me she gave my mom a chance and isn't willing to be hurt again. I hope my mom will feel better about it, because Elissa really is a such a cool person. Wish I could write more, but I got practice now! Cya!

Well she's dead and my sister loved her and I don't want to hate somebody who isn't alive anymore even if it does make me mad what happened with my mom. I love my mom a lot and I don't ever want to hurt her.

I still feel bad about how I made her cry even if she says it wasn't my fault. My sister isn't close to her dad at all and might not even invite him to her wedding. They had a fight about her choosing to move to Toronto after her mom died.

No they're little. One's eight the other's five. I'm not going to hurt my mom again by telling them before she's ready to.

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

Sources: Reddit
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