This story, posted on Reddit’s Am I the A–hole forum, starts with the following:
“I (52M) have three children with my ex Tracy (50F), Michael (28M), Linda (25F), and Victoria (23F). We split because Tracy had an affair with Stan (55M) to whom she is now married. We never shared with the kids the reason for the divorce, as I didn’t want them to blame either of us.”
Under the account name u/CultureFantastic4947, the well-off OP (original poster) went to say that he made a mistake when he hid the truth from his children. They saw him as the bad guy, while their mother who married her lover was able to win their sympathy because she was seen as the “underdog.”
Now grown up, his two older kids finally realized just how morally twisted and irresponsible their mother is. But his youngest daughter Victoria never looked up to OP as her real father until there were talks of her finally getting married. Her fiance even asked OP for his consent to the union.
Everything seemed to be going well with his youngest daughter, who started communicating even with OP’s new wife. But that was until they selected a wedding venue and OP paid for its deposit and first installment.
“I noticed that she was becoming less communicative again recently, ignoring my texts or giving one-word replies, and not coming over as much. On Monday, my son sent me a post on Instagram. My youngest had an engagement party this weekend, to which I was not invited. One of the photos was of her with Stan, and it read, “Anyone can be a father. It takes a real man to be a Dad. This amazing guy has been my dad for 15 years, even though he didn’t have to be. I am so blessed to have him walk me down the aisle next year! #daddysgirl #futuremrsx.”
OP was so stunned! He contacted his ex-wife to ask the reason why they did not invite him to the engagement party, to which she gave a lame excuse. And then he asked if he and Stan would be walking Victoria down the aisle, to which he received no response.
Later, Victoria called him up furiously and frankly told OP that it is Stan, “her dad,” who would walk her down the aisle. And so, OP replied that it has to be Stan who should pay for the wedding venue’s next installment.
Of course, as a result, OP earned the ire of his ex-wife, Victoria, and his older daughter Linda. But his son Michael understands him and agrees with OP’s decision.
What about the AITA community? Many of them support this father, whom they feel is just being manipulated and used by his youngest daughter.
“It seems pretty clear that the only reason Victoria reached out to OP in the first place was to get him to pay for the wedding. She’s made her decisions about who she’s going to treat as a dad. She’s treating OP as a bank and nothing more,” one of them wrote in reaction.
“Yep, apparently Victoria has learned from her mother. Who cares if she’ll speak to you or not? That’s just manipulation. I know she’s your daughter and you love her, but don’t let yourself be used. She pretended to be interested in recovering the relationship with you just to get what she wanted. PLEASE OP!!! Stand your ground!!! You are NTA!!! She’s cruel and a gold-digger,” another Reddit user agreed.
Meanwhile, this reaction has earned an award for wisdom: “Full disclosure: I’m not Michael. But I’m on your side too, OP. The truth about your divorce was ugly and unflattering to Tracy, so you apparently agreed to hide it forever, OP…not just till the kids were grown, but forever. That decision has bitten you in the butt and cost you your relationship with at least one of your adult kids. Please, sit down with Linda and Michael and TELL THEM THE TRUTH . Show them the bratty IG posting from Victoria and say, ‘You know I love all of you, but everyone has limits. I feel used and disrespected, and I’m not going to put up with it anymore. If Victoria wants to talk to me about this directly, fine, but I’m not willing to bankroll an event where I’m cast as an unwelcome stranger.’ NTA for keeping your money in your wallet and finding something else to do on the wedding day.”
And this comment from a daughter who also came from a broken family is as touching: “Please PLEASE tell your kids the truth. When my parents divorced, and honestly all through the marriage, my mother painted my dad as the bad guy. He never spent time with her, never bought her presents, etc. And my brother believed it. Thing is, she didn’t want to spend time with him, hates getting gifts, and was abusive towards him. I saw through her BS, but my brother didn’t for the longest time – and it really screwed him up. Please tell your children the truth.”
Learn more about how to deal with family communication issues in the video below:Whizzco