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Man shuts down stepson's request to become guardian of baby sister if parents die.

Man shuts down stepson's request to become guardian of baby sister if parents die.


No one wants to think about the logistics of their own death.

But when you have children, it's important to have an updated will that determines who they'd live with if an untimely accident occurred.

Picking a potential guardian is a big decision, you have to consider who has financial stability, emotional availability, and of course, who would even want to take on that responsibility during a tragedy.

Enthusiasm for the child, while appreciated, usually isn't the single deciding factor when picking a guardian.

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a man asked if he's wrong for laughing at the idea of his step son becoming guardian in an emergency.

He wrote:

AITA for laughing at the idea of my step son becoming my daughter’s guardian if my wife and I unexpectedly passed?

I have been married to my wife, Denise, for 5 years now. She has a son, Michael who is 18. We get along pretty well. He's a good kid with a great head on his shoulders. This past year, my wife and I welcomed our first biological child together, Sarah.

We're going through the process of updating our wills, which means choosing guardians in the event that both of us died. When Michael was younger, Denise had her parents listed, but they're now older and in no condition to take care of a baby. We asked my sister and her husband, they agreed.

We were explaining some things to Michael that came along with the will (insurance goes to him if we both pass, what he'd inherit, etc). We also explained that there was an account set up for him to get his own apartment once he finished college (he's currently a freshman), should we both pass by then. (Unlikely, but all bases covered sort of thing)

Michael then asked what would happen to Sarah. We told him our guardian choices. Michael straightened up and said that no, he would take on Sarah. I said that was very sweet, but he was still very young. Maybe we'd consider updating it in 10 or so years when he's older and more established. My wife said we'd think about it.

In private, I asked if she was seriously considering it. She pointed out that Michael spends a lot of time with her, is a good kid, etc and is volunteering. I said I wouldn't feel comfortable putting the fate of our daughter in the hands of a young adult.

I said if Denise was changing her mind on my sister and brother-in-law, that was completely fine but to me, Michael is not an option and it should be a 'two yes, one no wins' situation. She asked if it would really be so mad for Michael to become guardian and I laughed.

While yes, Michael is volunteering, he has no real clue what would come with being a parent. As I said, in 10 years, when he's more established and an adult, I'd consider it. For now, it needs to be someone else.

Denise isn't upset that I don't want Michael to be the guardian, but she is upset over how dismissive I'm being and that I laughed at her. She says that I'm being hurtful and offensive to both her and her son. AITA?

Edit: I am not changing my mind on making him guardian. Please stick to the judgment I asked about.

People quickly shared their hot takes.

Swirlyflurry wrote:

'She is upset over how dismissive I’m being and that I laughed at her.'

She summed it up perfectly. YTA.

Bibingka_Malagkit wrote:

'In 10 years, when he's more established and an adult, I'd consider it. For now, it needs to be someone else.'


YTA though because:

'How dismissive I'm being and I laughed at her.'

Outrageously_Penguin wrote:

YTA. You’re not completely wrong to be concerned with the idea and even veto it, but laughing and being dismissive was completely uncalled for. He sounds like a wonderful person and you should be very grateful that your child has an older brother who is responsible and loving to volunteer for that responsibility, even at 18. So stop being an a**hole to your wife about it.

Job_Moist wrote:

Gonna be the lone voice saying NAH here I guess. I would feel the same as you. I’d laugh if someone suggested my 18 year old step son suddenly become a parent full time to a grieving child. That’s not fair to either your step son or your child and it’s not realistic for your step son to think it’s a good idea either.

kapryiath wrote:

YTA, either you're reasonably old parents of a newborn or your wife was a reasonably young mom. By implying her son would be incapable of being a good Guardian I imagine your wife is feeling like your invalidating her experience of motherhood and implying she was a bad parent.

Dounesky wrote:

YTA - not for questioning if your stepson understands fully what responsibilities come with raising children. As an informed adult and parent, I get where you are coming from. However, the way you dismissed your wife is appalling. You laughed at her when she brought up the possibility that her son, who’s 18, offered to take his own sister.

She raised that boy and he wants to put his life on the line for his sister in the case where you both pass away. I don’t know many young adults who would do that. She’s taught him to value his family and if that was my kid I would seriously think about it too. She did good with him, and you just laughed at her.

It appears the internet is fairly unanimous about OP being TA for laughing at his wife, not for the actual decision about guardianship.

Sources: Reddit
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