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Mom refuses to reconnect with estranged daughter; 'I can't trust her with my kids.'

Mom refuses to reconnect with estranged daughter; 'I can't trust her with my kids.'

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AITA for not allowing my daughter to spend Christmas with me and my *new* family?

I (46F) am the mother of a 24 years old woman from my first marriage, and 12 and 10 years old boys from my second marriage. When I was married to my first husband he was unemployed almost all our marriage, we lived in a house his father owned, his father paid our bills, he bought us the car we drove, he sent my husband money to take care of our family…etc.

I was young, stupid and in love, that is my only excuse for living like that. When my daughter turned 5 I started pushing my husband to work, I myself got a job. He didn’t want to. Things escalated and ended up in us getting divorced.

He got full custody while I got visitations every other Saturday (his dad hired a good lawyer, I couldn’t do that). I also had to pay child support. I used to work a full time and 2 part time jobs to afford my 1 bedroom apartment as well as the child support payments. A year after our divorce, my ex married a new woman.

There was a lot of child alienation from them, and sadly I couldn’t afford to take them to court again. By the time my daughter turned 14, she was calling me by name and calling her step mom “mom”. I tried my best to hold on to my kid, I went to all the events I could go to, I planned fun days with the limited funds I had, even when I couldn’t afford to turn on the heat, I still made sure to get her a Christmas gift.

Sadly by the time she turned 16, she no longer wanted to have anything to do with me. I took them to court, but they did nothing. And the last time I saw her, she said some very awful things to me. I was defeated, but I decided that I no longer had a daughter, since that is literally what she wanted.

I moved away, met a good man, married him and had 2 wonderful kids. Last year my daughter reached out. She was sorry, she said that she wanted to reconnect. I was hesitant and resentful, but I still talk with her once a week.

Suddenly she asked if she could spend Christmas with us, she wanted to get to know her brothers. I told her that we were not in a stage where I could allow that. It got heated, but I told her that I could not trust her with my kids, and that I was still not 100% sure that I wanted our relationship to become more.

She says that I am an AH. That I am punishing her for things she had no control over, that I know what she told me and how she reacted to me was a direct result of her father’s manipulation. AITA?

Edits from OP:

Since a nice redditor brought it to my attention, my kids are adopted, she is my only biological child. I am just used to saying that I had kids. They are technically my late SIL’s children, but I raised them these last 7 years. She has never met them, I only met/adopted them after we were no longer in contact My kids know that she exists, but only in a superficial way.

What she did was not the typical I hate you most kids do, what she did destroyed me, and I don’t trust that she will not repeat it if I can’t give her what she wants again. That’s why I said that it wasn’t ready for more

As for why she didn’t want me to be her mom, we’ll take your pick from what she told me: I was embarrassing, I was poor, I couldn’t be the fun mom because I literally had no money, she hated that she had to sleep in my bed and couldn’t have her own room at my apartment, my gifts were always cheap trash, me having her that one Saturday interfered with her weekly girls’ weekend that she has with her real mom.

Here's how people judged OP:

Fancy_Association484 asked:

How the hell did he get custody without a job? Good lawyer or not- you had to do some shit not get 50-50

tryapw OP responded:

Small town, connected FIL who happens to be rich, and me barely over the poverty line and not from said town. It pays when the judge and every dam other person went to the same high school. I was lucky to get visitations.

illdecidetomorrow writes:

YTA. Those things happened when she was a CHILD. A mother’s love is supposed to be unconditional, especially at such a young age.

ffsmutluv writes:

Just tell us you hate her and want nothing to do with her. Stop wasting everyone's time.

tryapw OP responded:

I don’t hate, I have a lot of mixed feelings towards her. I love her, you don’t fight tooth and nail for someone you don’t love, but I also resent her, I am afraid that we will build something then she will up and leave again, I am afraid that when she needs something from me that I can’t give, it will be a repeat of last time.

That’s why I told her that I don’t think it’s the right time for her to meet my kids. I wanted to be sure.

AdministrationThis77 writes:

YTA. 'I was young, stupid and in love, that is my only excuse for living like that.'

Your daughter was also young and surrounded by manipulative people who turned her against you. You were able to snap out of it and work hard to make a life for yourself. Your daughter, who hurt your feelings when she was literally a child, seems to have snapped out of it as well. But you offer her no grace.

RighteousVengeance writes:

OP, after hearing her daughter tell her that she wanted nothing further to do with her, hearing her daughter replace her with her step mom, OP is understandably reluctant to rush back into things.

In case you haven't noticed, Christmas is three days away. Are you guys really, really calling OP the AH because she doesn't want to suddenly put reconciliation on the fast track?

Sources: Reddit
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