Ok, for some context, my mom became unable to work due to losing function in her legs and right arm due to suffering a stroke. So this left no one available to care for my half sister as her father isn't currently in the picture and doesn't want to take her in and just sends child support checks once a month.
This led to my mother reaching out to me and asking if I could take my half sister in since she could no longer afford full time care for herself while having someone take care of her.
I told her that I couldn't take care of a kid and I wouldn't want to even if I could and she's got to find some other solution. This is mainly due to me having to travel internationally every other week for work.
So I told her that not many jobs would pay nearly as well if I worked locally and It would be a pain to find another job near were we live. I also told her that it would be a terrible financial decision to give up a really good job in a lucrative industry just so I can parent a kid that I didn't want in the first place.
She tried to offer the child support amount as compensation but that doesn't even cover the cost of raising a kid much less the 6 figure pay cut Id take by switching jobs. So I told her there is nothing I can do for her and to try other options. So AITA?
NAH, but barely. You are pretty close minded about helping, and it comes across as lacking empathy. That doesn't mean you should take your half sister and give up your career if that would be more than you are willing to do. But what CAN you offer? If your mom is going into full time care, your sister has literally no one.
CPS isn't the way to go, but reaching out for social services with your mom (not against her) and making sure she and your sister are both getting their needs met might be an option. Or taking her in but finding a care person to be with her while you travel could be an option.
Or helping financially somehow so that your mom has more options to pursue, or....any show of support other than the "it's not my problem" vibe you are sending now. Just acknowledging how difficult it must be for them would help them accept your no more easily.
NTA, may I ask how old your little sister is? The only AH in this story is her father, who refuses to take care of his child, seeing it is his responsibility.
Ah, OK, that part was missing. But it's your choice, whatever you decide, you are not the a-hole. But 14 year old can be pretty independent, so maybe reach out to other family members for help.
That someone else takes her when you are traveling and she can stay with you when you're home. It's basically only for 2 years. Or depending on in which country you live she could go to a boarding school. If the father refuses to take her in, he is obligated to pay at least a part of boarding school. Talk to your sister, ask what she would like.
I don’t think you’re TA for not wanting to raise her, but if the difficulty for your mom keeping her is financial and you’ve got a lucrative job, what about helping pay for keeping her with her mother? If switching jobs would mean a 6 figure pay cut, it sounds like you could significantly help without hurting yourself. NAH so far, but refusing to help would be pretty selfish.
I will preface this by saying that I raised my two brothers. So I am biased. It’s unavoidable. I want to first say that I didn’t raise my brothers because my parents asked me to. I raised my brothers because my parents got them taken by the state and I didn’t want them to go into foster care. I was in foster care and it is not a good life at all.
You phrasing the situation as if it’s a favor your mom asked you to do that’s simply inconvenient to your life 100% makes you TA in my opinion. There is no mention of what the fate of your sister will be if you do not help. There is no concern for her. Your sisters life is falling apart and you don’t seem to have any empathy for that.
Also, your mom didn’t run off with a man. She had a stroke and needs help. If there is some underlying issue that wasn’t addressed or that I missed, then I may change my mind. I hope I am missing something cause this post and the comments make me kinda sad.
You don’t owe your mom anything, but again this isn’t just an inconvenient favor. She’s in a dire situation and needs help. And your sister is a child. I’m sure she isn’t exactly okay with her mom not being able to be her mom anymore.