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Woman refuses to 'return' family heirloom to stepdad's family after he passes away.

Woman refuses to 'return' family heirloom to stepdad's family after he passes away.


Should you be forced to return an heirloom if the person who gave it to you passed away?

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a woman asked if she was wrong for refusing to return to a family heirloom to her grandma. She wrote:

"AITA for refusing to give back a family heirloom to my grandma?"

I 22F was given a beautiful necklace by my stepdad Jake when I graduated college last year. It was from his grandma’s jewelry collection and I wear it every day. Jake proposed to my mom when I was 12 and we were really close. I have only met Jake’s family a couple times over the years as they live very far and initially didn’t approve of my mom. They tolerate my mom and me on holidays and are civil for Jake.

A few weeks after my graduation, Jake and my mom passed in an accident and the last year has been really hard on me. I fell out with Jake’s extended family when I was organizing their funerals- Jake was brought up Christian and his family wanted to hold his funeral in their family church. My mom and me are Atheist and I know she wanted to be cremated, so this many their funerals would be separate.

I asked Jake's family if we could have a joint wake for my mom and Jake but they insisted on doing it in their church hall which I refused as my mom was not religious and wanted to do it at my mom and Jake’s house. We fell out over this and I haven’t spoken to them since as they decided to hold a wake for Jake in the church and not invite me.

Yesterday, I got a message from Jake’s mom asking for the necklace Jake gave me. She said it’s a family heirloom, to be added to the oldest daughter and she wanted to give it to Jake’s sister who is pregnant. I refused as Jake gave it to me, and she got very hostile and threatened to sue me. I am not sure if she can as Jake was never married to my mom or officially my dad, but he was my dad regardless.

The internet had a lot to say about the scenario.

SheBrownSheRound wrote:

NTA. Do you have any documentation (text messages, anything??) about the necklace that would demonstrate that Jake gifted it to you?

And did Jake’s mother (presumably the former owner of the necklace) see you wearing it any time after it had been gifted to you? Did she make any comment on it?

You may need to get in contact with a lawyer as well. In the meantime, is there any way you can go no contact with these people? I’m so sorry you have to deal with these people, and I’m truly sorry for your loss. Edit: Derp. Messed up between Jake’s mom and grandmother there.

chelseatx84 wrote:

NTA - I cannot imagine how hard all this must be on you. Your dad gave you something that meant a lot to him because you meant a lot to him. Period - end of story. It is yours to keep in my opinion. His family has shown you their true colors. Believe them. Allow that necklace to serve as a reminder that you were loved and shut out all that toxicity.

Arkayenro wrote:

NTA. they would have to show that jake stole it to be able to try and get it back from you. You had it long enough, and presumably, they saw it at the time if you word it that often, that it should have been brought up way before now if it wasnt Jake's to give.

clearheaded01 wrote:

Sorry for your loss.

The necklace was a gift to you, if you can in any way prove this, she should get nowhere in her lawsuit. NTA.

OP is NTA here at all, Jake's family is being petty and vindictive.

Sources: Reddit
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