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'Unseen middle child' furious when 'golden child' steals her thunder as adults. AITA?

'Unseen middle child' furious when 'golden child' steals her thunder as adults. AITA?


Growing up in the shadow of a golden child is rough, but hopefully that will get better once everyone is a grown up. Right? Right?

According to one young woman who came to Reddit, nope.

'AITA for telling my sister why I'm acting cold during family dinner that was thrown in MY honour after she made it about herself?'

Throwaway227839484 writes:

I (25F) am the middle child in our family of 3 siblings (Alison -28F; Jake - 22M). Sadly I am the stereotypical unseen middle child while Alison is the golden daughter. She literally cannot do anything wrong based on my parents' opinion.

I opened up a new bakery in our town. My mom invites the whole family for dinner once in a while and this time she said the dinner was in my honour, to celebrate my new job. Which was sweet and I was pelasantly surprised.

How lovely!

Alison lives in a different city. When she came home for dinner, she was not alone. She had her girlfriend (Elizabeth - 30F) with her.

Now Alison is a playgirl who uses her law degree to get laid (even on my friends back in the day) but she never brought her girlfriends home. She did this time and everyone's attention was on her.

Through the whole dinner, there was only one mention of my bakery, ironically it was from Elizabeth. The rest was spent on getting to know Elizabeth and her job, interests, how she met Alison, etc. It also didn't help that she was a psychiatrist and everyone had questions.

I was beyond pissed. She could've brought her home any other time but chose this one time that our parents decided to acknowledge me.

Ah, so OP is thinking she did this on purpose...

So I was cold throughout the dinner. Not that anyone really cared.

At the end of the night, Alison asked me why I was sulking. I told her the truth and I said she managed to make this about herself as well, that she couldn't live if the spotlight wasn't on her.

She told me I should be happy for her because she's fallen in love and is extremely happy with her girlfriend and wanted her to be a part of this celebration.

She knew exactly what bringing a girlfriend would do to the dinner. So I told her she could've done it literally any other night. Right now, we're still pretty distant.

AITA (Am I the a-hole) here? Am I overreacting?

Here's what Reddit had to say...

They were all over the board with this one.

h4tdogchizdog says:

NTA (Not the a-hole). It was insensitive and I agree with you with her being wrong because she should have checked with you if it was okay. It was YOUR celebration, not hers. It wasn’t about her having to be in love, it was about your new job. It’s normal to feel guilt when you’ve been unseen your whole life, and with what your sister said, she made it seem you were selfish which you weren’t.

NWeasley21 comments:

NAH (No a-holes here) I don't think your sister did it on purpose. In my experience the golden child rarely realizes how much more attention they get than their siblings. This is something your parents do but you have directed your anger over it at your sister.

When you've cooled down a bit I think it's worth a conversation with her about how you feel. If things go well it could lead to you two being closer, and maybe even her helping in directing more parental attention your way.

You are kind of an a-hole for calling her a playgirl, how many people she sleeps with is no one's business but hers.

ProfessionallyJudgy asks:

INFO: How often does your mom host these dinners, and how often does your sister come home for them? Because if this is a regular event (like every few months) done nominally this time to honor you that's very different than a rare event specifically held for you (more akin to a graduation dinner).

From OP:

To answer your questions, mom hosts these dinners three times a year, this time it was nominally done for me. My sister lives on the other side of the country (different coast) and is pretty far away. She used to visit very often when she was in school, but now that she's become a lawyer she visits us twice a year, once for Christmas and once in any of these 3 dinners that mom hosts.

Seth_Gecko writes:

I think you're being a bit immature. From the way it sounds, your mother seems to have told you this was your night, but everyone else thought it was just another dinner at mom's. You said yourself you do it regularly.

If I was your sister I would be baffled at your childish attitude. The only person who might be an AH is your mom, if she told you this was a celebration dinner for you and in your honor but neglected to make that clear to anyone else.

JoJBooD shares:

I'll say ESH (everyone sucks here), referring to you and your parents. Your parents are assholes for pretty obvious reasons that everyone else has pretty much already told you in these comments.

You, however, are also an asshole for choosing to hold so much resentment against your sister rather than your parents. Like, 'Alison is a playgirl that uses her law degree to get laid'. Seriously? That's your opinion of your sister? Either you're leaving out some major details about your relationship with Alison, or you're an asshole.

itrallydoesntmatter scolds OP:

You sound super entitled for no reason. Your sister is an adult. She is allowed to bring her gf to meet the family. You are acting like her doing that was malicious towards you. Not everything is about you, nor should it be. It was a family dinner. If you wanted to talk about your bakery, your sister’s gf simply existing is not stopping you. YTA (You're the a-hole). A pitiful one at that.

But Reasonable-Watch-460 defends OP:

That's literally the whole point. NOTHING IS EVER ABOUT HER. clearly you have not the slightest clue on how this feels.

Jabuwow sees it a little differently:

Idk, your sister could have brought the gf home any other night but lives in a different city? How far? The way it's worded sounds like she can't just bring her home some other night, no?

I think OP's feelings are valid, but also don't blame the sister. If anything, maybe you should bring it up to the ones you're actually mad at, your parents, whom you've got this feeling of never being enough for.

What do you think?

Is OP or her sister an a-hole? Or did their parents create this whole dynamic and are thus, the orignal a-holes here?

Sources: Reddit
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