Parent Refusing Help To Adopted Son, Telling Him To Ask 'Real Family' Backed

A parent has been supported online for their decision not to help their adopted son who has been cutting contact for nearly a decade but has broken the silence to ask for help.

Reddit user u/SillyProducts2836 posted on the AITA [Am I The A******?] thread seeking advice after saying no to their adopted son when he needed financial help and a place to stay. The post, titled "AITA for not taking in my son and his family," explains that the poster and their ex-wife adopted their son when he was six, after three years of being his foster parents.

At the age of 18, the son met his wife who encouraged him to reach out to his biological parents and build a relationship with them.

"Over the course of the next few years my ex-wife and I were slowly pushed out of his life," the post reads.

Adopted Son Blasted For Pushing Parents Away
Main picture, a stock image shows a man thinking. Inset an image of a family of three. A parent has been supported online for their decision not to help their adopted son who has been cutting contact for nearly a decade but has broken the silence to ask for help. Getty Images

"When they got married we only received a wedding invitation. We were not part of the wedding party. His biological parents and their spouses sat at the family table.

"We have not had the opportunity to meet our granddaughter and she is nearly three years old now.

"I am sad about the situation, but my ex-wife is heartbroken. I hate to see her hurt when all she did was try and be a good mom. I can honestly say I am not a fan of my daughter-in-law and I wish she had never come into our lives."

After being pushed away over the last nine years, the son recently experienced financial trouble and lost his home. This led him to reach out to his adoptive parents to ask if he could stay with them temporarily, since they live in the same city that he works in.

However, the original poster was less than sympathetic, explaining that they felt he was only asking "because he is desperate" and that they don't owe the son anything,
so he should ask his "real family" for help instead. The OP adds that they don't believe reconciliation is on the cards, and that it wouldn't change anything moving forward.

This firm stance didn't go down well with OP's daughter-in-law though, as the poster wrote: "His wife called me to scream at me. She says that I am abandoning my son and grandchild."

Licensed marriage and family therapist Shontel Cargill offered some advice for the Reddit poster.

Cargill told Newsweek: "Communication is key to every type of relationship, including families and friendships. Boundaries are also very important to protect not only those in the relationship, but the relationship itself.

"Saying no can also mean saying yes to yourself and is a form of self-love, especially in moments when you need time to heal. Saying no also means establishing boundaries that protect you and the relationship from further damage that can be caused.

"In this example, the person may be saying no at this moment due to the current state of the relationship. However, this no may be temporary, and hopefully there is space to mend their relationship so the no turns into a yes when the time is right."

Cargill suggested that the OP reflect on why they feel guilty, and consider meeting with the adopted son to discuss the distance in their relationship.

However thousands of Reddit users took a harder line.

One person commented: "He has been pushing you away for 9 years for his bio parents. He's clearly indicated you are not his parents. He doesn't get to randomly come back and majorly disrupt your lives because he's in a bad position now."

Another Reddit user wrote: "You raised him from 3 years old to adulthood. That should have meant something to him. It should have meant enough to at least keep you in the loop on his life. But his actions say that it apparently was not enough for even that."

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