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She calls her sister 'selfish' for doing IVF instead of adopting an 'available' child.

She calls her sister 'selfish' for doing IVF instead of adopting an 'available' child.


Family planning often doesn't go the way you plan, ironically. But do other people have the right to tell you how to do it?

When a younger sister found out about her older sister's intentions, she decided to pull her aside and tell her how she really felt. The consequences were disastrous. So, lil sis came to Reddit to ask:

'AITA (Am I the A-hole) for calling my sister selfish for wanting to do IVF?'

u/AdoptedAH writes:

My (19F) oldest sister (30F) has been struggling with infertility for the past 3 years since they started trying for a baby. This Easter she and her husband made the announcement that they are going to be pursuing IVF and will start a go fund me for it.

They looked at our parents expectantly, and made it quite clear they expect them to front a lot of the cost. We are far from wealthy and my parents work and save every penny from their labor jobs. I’ve been working since I was 16 to help support the household too and to save money to move out.

Everyone congratulated them on the decision and wished them luck but when I got a chance I told them they were being selfish for spending money the family doesn’t have just to have a biological child, especially since there are so many children out there available for adoption.


For context, I was adopted into my family at a young age, so I am probably very biased about this topic. I think IVF in general is a selfish thing to do, and the fact they can’t even pay for it themselves is the cherry on top.

Now my sister won’t speak to me, and my family members except one sister is calling me an a-hole for saying that. My one sister says she understands where I’m coming from. AITA (Am I the a-hole)?

What does the internet love more than judging moms? Judging potential moms!

Reddit was all over the board on this one, and everyone made their case passionately.

citronaughty says:

NTA (Not the a-hole). I think you're wrong in your logic, but that doesn't make you an AH (and I could be wrong in my assessment.) I don't think they're selfish for wanting to do IVF instead of adopting. Adopting isn't for everyone, and some people want to have a biological child, if they can. That preference isn't wrong, it's just their preference.

However, your oldest sister IS selfish for expecting the family to pay for it, especially when they don't really have the means. Also, if your sister isn't in a position to afford the IVF procedure on her own, is she really in a good financial position to be having a child? I'm not so sure.

But lukibunny thinks that's a bit presumptuous:

From OP's own description, they looked at them expectantly not that they demand that they pay for it. That's very different. You can look at someone expectantly and they say can still say no and you feel disappointed but will accept it.

OP responds:

I guess technically there was no “demand” but my parents are so so generous with family, they would never say no to something like this especially with the way they were put on the spot publicly at Easter dinner. They historically have helped out whenever they can, and my sister KNOWS they wouldn’t say no.

We don’t struggle to put food on the table but we do struggle to have a house big enough with a personal room for everyone or to send people to their top choice schools. They have helped my oldest sister with many things including her education, housing, wedding, basically every step of her life. It ranges from like 20% of the cost to like 80%. It’s definitely expected of them by now…

And harbjnger takes issue with another statement:

Plenty of people can afford the ongoing cost of raising a child but don’t have $50,000 sitting around to spend all at once. Not saying it’s cool to expect other people to pay, I just hate the argument that if you can’t afford IVF, you can’t afford to raise a child. It’s a totally different kind of expense.

CSnarf says:

ESH (Everyone sucks here). It is a truly important lesson that you should never comment on someone’s desire to have/not have children and how they might go about that. It is incredibly personal. Infertility is heartbreaking for many.

You were absolutely an a-hole for what you said. And yes, you history has biased you. It’s fine to advocate for adoption. You don’t have to call someone selfish while you are doing that.

Your sister is an AH because how you choose to have children should not become someone else’s financial burden. But that’s still not your conversation to have. That’s your parents call.

whynot246810 thinks OP is way out of line:

YTA (You're the a-hole) - I really hate when people use 'adopt or foster' to people who want to go through IVF. Not everyone wants to go that route, and that's OK.

Your sister isn't forcing anyone to pay, and she has every right to set up a fund me account. Stop being so judgmental. Infertility is really hard, and family who judge the path they choose makes it so much more difficult.

CrimsonVixen49 agrees:

I don't think people understand how expensive adoption is. Foster care kids are usually very... angry and broken. Not everyone wants to deal with that... sometimes people just want to have their own kid. Which is okay, imo. OP, YTA for being so rude and jumping to conclusions.

OP then asks:

Are biological children inherently better than adopted children? Will my kids be less than because they don’t have the same genes? Am I less than because of it? Why is them having children so much more important than other things we could be using that money for, like a house or school?

Then gtwl214 shares from experience:

NTA. I’m an adoptee. I understand your biases and feelings, but it’s unfair for you to project your feelings into this situation. Adoption and IVF shouldn’t be compared. Neither are less than, but they both have their respective benefits and consequences.

There are adoptees out there who feel like they were consolidation prizes, they were only adopted because their AParents were infertile. There are also situations where infertile couples adopt, then are able to have a bio kids, and the adoptee is sometimes tossed aside.

You should know that adoption has many complexities to it, and it’s not a decision to be done lightly. Also, most people want a newborn or baby, not an older child. Most children who are legally free to be adopted are not babies.

Adopting a newborn is expensive because there are more prospective adoptive parents over newborns. The other children in foster care cannot be adopted because the goal is reunification.

Is IVF expensive? Yes. Is adoption expensive? Yes. However, any couple deciding between IVF and adoption should be responsible for the cost. That’s where your sister is the AH. They should not expect your parents to pay for majority of costs for their IVF.

CAShark-7 analyzes the social aspect:

YTA. Your feelings and opinions are valid. However, you sister did not ask your opinion. She was silently asking for money, but not your opinion. You gave it anyway. Now you have some family members mad at you. Those are consequences from offering an unsolicited opinion.

You can feel what you want and have any opinions you want. If you don't want to contribute, then don't. Your parents can make their own choices on how they want to respond.

So.... who is it?

It seems like whoever the a-hole is in the story has a lot to do with your personal opinions on parenting, reproduction, and people 'asking' for money. Sound off in the comments!

Sources: Reddit
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