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Dad calls ex 'bitter' for not letting him take two of four kids for Christmas. AITA?

Dad calls ex 'bitter' for not letting him take two of four kids for Christmas. AITA?


Figuring out where kids go during the holidays is one of the biggest conflicts in custody arrangements.

Each parent has their own traditions and ideas about why and how they should spend the holidays, and once you bring grandparents into it, conflicts can grow even bigger.

Ideally, the feelings of the children would be centered in these decisions, but oftentimes, it's more convoluted than that.

In a popular AITA post, a man asked if he was wrong for calling his children's mom bitter because she won't let them spend the holidays with him.

He wrote:

AITA for calling my children's mother bitter and selfish after she refused to let me have two of our children on Christmas?

My ex-wife and I got a divorce months ago. We share custody of our four children (8m, 6f, 4m, 2f). This is our first Christmas being separated. We'd usually spend the holidays with my side of the family.

We checked the schedule and she's 'supposed' to have the kids during Christmas. All 4four of them which I thought was unfair to me and my family. especially my mother since she can't enjoy the holidays without her grandchildren.

I called their mom and suggested that she let me have two of our children spend Christmas with me and family while she has the other two. She refused but I told her it's the best compromise.

She said something about not wanting the kids to spend Christmas away from each other but I explained how miserable me and my family would be this Christmas if none of the kids are around.

She said no and that I needed to prioritize the kids' feelings above mine and my family's but I told her that this compromise is the best we could come up with.

We got into an argument and she insisted she won't let the kids be separated on Christmas and that if I have an 'issue' with that then I need to go to court.

I snapped and in a moment of anger told her that no one can tell me when I get to see my kids, called her bitter and selfish then she hung up.

I tried to call her mother hoping she'd reason with her but she instead shamed me for being 'willing' to separate the kids from each other just so I could 'please my family' and said that her daughter is doing what's best for the kids.

My mother is devastated over this and thinks that my ex is being deliberately cruel. It's still hasn't been figured out yet and she's rejecting my calls.

People quickly weighed in with their two cents.

GoldieOGilt wrote:

YTA. Your wife is right. You want to split the kids for you, not for them. This is wrong. Do you want to create drama and jealousy between your kids? Do you want them to have less memories together?

This is what you are trying to do. The only fair thing is one of you have them on Christmas Eve and the other on Christmas Day. Christmas is just a date, you can celebrate on any day with kids.

dart1126 wrote:

YTA. I love we didn’t need any unnecessary backstory on why you’re divorced…you and your family are a**holes and your wife was done…got it.

Unfortunately, if your mother at her age and stage of life doesn’t recognize that the well-being of the kids, especially during this first holiday season post-divorce, comes first, then she never will, and I’m very afraid you never will either…sigh.

coffeecoffi wrote:

It still hasn't been figured out yet

Yes, it has been figured out. The kids will be together at Christmas with their mom.

You just haven't accepted it, but it's all figured out. (Unless you decide to go to court where the judge will laugh in your face and not split up the kids. Then it will be figured out and you'll be more broke.)

YTA for all the reasons your wife told you. And likely for a few more you haven't shared.

yeehawt22 wrote:

YTA and congratulations on getting back with your first love/priority, your mother! May you two be happy together.

calicosmoke wrote:

YTA and I can see why she divorced you. There was no selfishness or bitterness on your ex-wife's part. Like you said, this is on the schedule.

You could have talked to her about her having Christmas and you having the day after, or figuring out how to split the day amicably so the kids could spend time with both of you, but no.

Imagine callously wanting to split four young siblings up over Christmas just to have some petty 'win.'

The fact that you don't care about how upset the kids would be being split up like that and only caring about yourself and your mother is going to be fantastic for your ex-wife if she decides to go to court for greater custody.

Because no actually loving father carelessly picks two random kids for Christmas like they're pets.

Clearly, the internet sides with OP's ex.

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