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Woman's neighbor begs her to be new parent to kids after husband leaves. AITA?

Woman's neighbor begs her to be new parent to kids after husband leaves. AITA?


'AITA for not helping my neighbor with her kids after her husband left her'


Background info: My husband and I (late 20s M&F), have lived next to Jack and Jill for two years. We have a son who’s six years old, and they have two kids who are a similar age, but a little bit older.

All the kids go to the same elementary school and I used to see Jack in the car rider line. Our neighborhood is relatively close to the school so the school bus does not pick up here, we have to walk or drive our kids to school.

Jack and Jill have constantly had loud fights ever since they moved here. And by fights I mostly mean Jill would scream at jack and kick him out the house on a weekly basis.

Normally he would sleep in his car and come back inside in the morning after she leaves for work. Jill works as a CNA at a nearby hospital, the 6am-6pm shift. Jack worked from home, like I do, which let him take the kids to school.

Well, after this last fight jack packed up all his stuff and left, flew back home to his mother in a different country. Jill recently came to me saying that she has no one to watch her kids from roughly 5 am to 7 pm.

She asked if she could send them over in the morning, have me watch them and feed them breakfast and then take them to school. And then later pick them up and feed them dinner and watch them till she gets off work.

I explained to her that being expected to be a second parent basically to two kids is not something I’m really interested in. I asked how much she was willing to pay and she said she EXPECTED me to do it for free, since she has no friends and no one else to ask.

She also asked if I would watch them on the weekends so she could pick up extra shifts, otherwise she won’t be able to pay the rent.

I told her absolutely not, and that she’s insane basically to think I’d agree to something so unreasonable when we aren’t even friends and our kids aren’t friends either.

My husband thinks I was an asshole, and that we could offer to at least help sometimes for the kids sake. My stance is that we both know she wouldn’t do the same for us if the roles were reversed, since Jill isn’t really a nice person.

AITA for not helping my neighbor with her kids after her husband left?

Here were the top comments from readers:


Nope nta. Do not budge. The husband needs to come back and step up. Tell your husband to look after the kids.


Absolutely do not tell your husband any such thing! You of course know who will end up watching those kids. 😣


NTA - this is quite an extensive and unreasonable expectation. It's not even her asking you for help, it's her expecting you to pick up her slack.

  • 5a-7a Monday-Friday (with breakfast and transportation)

  • 3p-7p Monday-Friday (with snack, dinner, and transportation)

  • weekends as needed

And let's not forget, it's about time for summer break. So you'd what, have to provide full daycare while she works? She needs to come up with a plan on her own that does not involve forcing neighbors to parent her children.


NTA. Your husband needs to back off. You are not responsible for watching Jill's children. She needs to arrange for a family member or get a nanny to watch her kids. This is her problem, not yours.


NTA, and I think that all of the reasons why are in the OP’s post.

First, OP states that was Jill would scream at Jack and throw him out of the house. With Jack gone, who will Jill now turn her frustrations onto in her ever increasingly difficult situation as money becomes more scarce?

Second, Jill has no friends. Why do we suppose that is? Young couple with younger kids in school, who doesn’t have at least some friends? Could it be that they’ve been alienated for some reason? Did you want to find out and join their club?

And let’s not even get started on the whole “for free” aspect of her whole proposal. WITH FOOD! You know that this will also include transportation to the beach, park, zoo, museum, take your pick, and the price of admission and food as well.

Your husband may have a good heart, I get that. But then again, I presume that the bulk of the work falls upon OP, and perhaps he hasn’t fully thought thru the financial implications. But especially if you believe that Jill wouldn’t do it for you, no, just no. 😕

So do you think this OP was wrong to not assist her neighbor in such a desperate time or was she just drawing a line?

Sources: Reddit
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