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Parents' criticism backfires: Nepo kid responds with refund check and a GTFO. AITA?

Parents' criticism backfires: Nepo kid responds with refund check and a GTFO. AITA?


"AITA for writing my parents a check for everything they say I owe them and telling them to STFU and GTFO."


I am 30 years old and fairly successful thus far. My parents are a huge part of my success. The kept me motivated through school, they gave me a great childhood, they helped me graduate debt free. My mom's contacts helped me land a well paying job straight out of university. I'm a nepo kid. Without them, who knows where I'd be.

They think this gives them carte blanche to interfere in my life. They constantly critique everything about my life. I cannot think of one aspect of my life they approve of. And I'm not a bad person or anything. It's not like they have a problem with me because I am a drug addict or working as a sugar baby. They just think they know better about everything.

I had them over to my place for my dad's birthday. And everything was wrong. My apartment was too small, the stove didn't have precise control of the heating elements and I scorched the sauce, I did not do it was perfect.

Just everything. And they kept saying they wanted better for me. And that after everything they did for me I should be doing better. Well I'm doing well. And because I live the way I do I've actually done fantastic for the last eight years. So I wrote them a big check and asked them to hold it up.

I took a picture of them with the check. They asked what it was for. I said that it was everything they had wasted on me since obviously they think I have failed, so I'm giving them a refund. I told them that I loved them and that I appreciated their help but now that they were paid back they could keep their opinions to themselves and out of my apartment.

They got huffy and left. I heard from my brother that they are pissed that I did that. I don't really care. I just want them to accept that I don't owe it to them to live my life how they want.

Here were the top rated comments from readers:


NTA. If your parents were actually supportive and loving, they would encourage you instead of criticizing. It’s great that they helped you growing up - but that actually what parents are supposed to do.

There’s nothing wrong in setting boundaries or expecting to be treated with respect and kindness, as an adult. Writing them a check was an inventive way of trying to point out their negative behavior.

I’m not sure it will work to make them understand how their actions aren’t reasonable or kind, but it was a better option than losing your temper! Keep your boundaries, live your best life, and if your parents want to be a part of it, they can learn not to be AHs around you.


They want OP to be the personification of perfection, because they consider OP an extension of them. They're not genuinely concerned about what's best for her, because that would require them to view OP as an autonomous individual. Plenty of parents struggle with the transition from a parent/child relationship to treating them like an equal adult.

Some parents never seem to get there. I don't think it's that simple in this case, and you nailed a big part of the "why" that bleeds into every crack of the facade they're insisting upon:

"If your parents were actually supportive and loving, they would encourage you instead of criticizing."

My husband didn't realize how controlling and toxic his family was, because it's all he knew. When he finally got a little space to breathe, he started to realize a lot of what he considered "normal," wasn't actually normal. I sadly get the feeling OP's childhood would have less sunshine and rainbows than they think.

I'm living for the level of the "fuck off with that bullshit" power move OP made. It simultaneously proves OP is doing great, while setting a hard boundary that she's done with the parent's negativity.


NTA. But in one way, the check kind of cheapens the point. Meaning no one owes their parents a refund in order to gain the right to live how they want to live as an adult.

That said, the check also makes your point crystal clear. You don’t owe them anything, and they need to stop treating you as though all their help came with a plethora of invisible strings attached. You can’t be held to conditions and expectations you never agreed to.


I disagree. I think the cheque was the hilarious icing on the cake. OP could have said the words and kicked them out, but they gave their parents a physical reminder of their idiocy.

"Here is your investment back, shame you think it didn't work out"

They will remember this day when they are in a retirement home and their child never visits.


NTA. I think that you were pretty ingenious with your response, and fortunate that you could do that. If they can't drop it, there are 2 things I might say - first, "I am sorry that your investment in me didn't pay off and you are disappointed, but at least you have been reimbursed."

Second "Well maybe this isn't what you had in mind for me, but I am totally happy and satisfied with what you helped me accomplish and where I am in life. Can't you just be happy for me?"


NTA. Now for god's sake cancel that check before they cash it. You don't owe them a thing.


NTA, but I think from now on you need to be firmer in enforcing boundaries. If they start criticising you, just hang up the phone or walk away.


NTA. Your parents should WANT to spend their time, money and use contacts for you - cause they're parents and their job as a parents is to give their child good childhood and the best start they can provide. They did that and good for them, but that's it.

They did their job as a parents - now they have to let you live as an adult. And I'm not saying to completly cut them off or something. But it's pretty obvious that either you didn't feel like you could tell them to let you live your life or you did tell them that and they ignored you.

No matter what happened it is clear that this whole "check situation" was effect of some emotions brewing in the background for quite some time. You have to give yourself time and space to sort out your emotions and then meet up on some neutral grounds (maybe with a neutral third person as a mediator, like a family therapist) to explain everything to each other.

So, do you think the OP was in the wrong here? Do you think they are being petty and ungrateful or are they standing up for their own agency as this point?

Sources: Reddit
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