Teen Praised for 'Replacing' Family After Learning She Is Product of Affair

A teenager received praise online for reaching out to her biological father after she learned she was the product of her mother's secret affair.

The Original Poster (OP), known as u/Awn2247, posted about the situation in Reddit's popular "Am I The A**hole" forum where it received more than 10,800 upvotes and 1,600 comments. The post can be found here.

Children and Infidelity

With an estimated 15 percent of women and 25 percent of men admitting to having affairs, children are often affected in various ways, according to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.

Research conducted by clinical psychologist and author Dr. Ana Nogales found that 70 percent of children felt betrayed by their parent's infidelity and 70 percent said the infidelity impacted their ability to trust others.

Teen praised for 'replacing' family
Here, a teen sits on a couch while two adults have a conversation. Commenters backed a teen for reaching out to her biological father without informing any of her relatives after learning she was the product of her mother's affair. Nikodash/iStock

Her research also found that 80 percent of children felt their parent's infidelity affected their perspectives on love and relationships.

'AITA?'

In the post titled "AITA for seeking my biological father after learning I'm the child of infidelity and being shipped to live with grandparents?" the 15-year-old said they recently discovered that they are a "child of infidelity."

"My mom was cheating on my dad and I'm the result," the post read. "My three other siblings are my dad's. I just turned 15."

The OP said she found out six months ago and moved in with her grandparents after her dad said he would only stay with her mom and make things work if she moved out. The OP said she has been treated like "garbage" by most of her family and some friends since.

"I haven't talked to my dad ever since I've left," the post read. "I talk to my mom once a week and about 2 months ago asked her to give me information about my biological father. She refused but I managed to figure it out."

The OP said her aunt is the only relative who still treats her the same. She said her aunt "had her suspicions" about who her father was and she reached out before DNA tests confirmed everything.

"My bio father did not know I exist and is excited, his family are cool too," the post read. "He told me he didn't know my mom was married at the time and he left her upon learning. His wife and little kids are also excited, so I started spending time with them and have so far had a great time."

'Trying to Replace Them'

The OP's aunt was the only person who knew that she reached out to her biological father until recently when her grandparents walked in on her video calling him.

When both her parents were informed, they told her they were "hurt" by her "actions."

"I insisted that I'm hurt by their actions but they said they're just trying to figure things out and what I've done is effectively giving up and trying to replace them," the post read. "To be honest I have given up as I don't feel like part of the family anymore."

After asking her mom what she expected to occur, she was told to "trust her" that she would "make things right" for her.

"AITA in this situation for giving up and reaching out to my bio father without telling my mom and 'dad' and therefore trying to replace them?" the post read.

Redditor Reactions

More than 1,600 users commented on the post, many supporting the OP for reaching out to her biological father and his family.

"Let me get this straight: You got thrown out of your home by your mom and dad and they're now claiming to be hurt by your actions? NTA," one user commented, receiving nearly 18,000 upvotes.

"NTA and I'm so sorry that your family can't behave like adults and treat you like a human being," another user commented. "It's okay to reach out to your bio dad and you have every right to be mad at your family for treating you bad for a situation you have zero control over."

"You are so much NTA that I can't even put it into words," another user commented. "The man who raised you as his child for 15 years decided he wanted nothing to do with you...your mother enabled that and decided that her romantic relationship was more important than her child's well-being...and they think you are the a**hole for reaching out to someone for love and emotional support?"

"Your dad is an awful human to make you leaving [sic] a condition of him staying," another commented. "You've done absolutely nothing wrong. Nothing. I'm glad you've found your bio dad, spend time getting to know that side of your family."

"I don't understand how a person can raise a child for 15 years and then, just because they're not biologically related, cut them out of their lives and their family's lives," another user commented. "Family is about more than DNA."

"How DARE your mom and 'dad' blame YOU for your mom's affair?! This is one of the worst things I've ever read on here. They need to be replaced, they are awful people, your mom in particular. NTA."

"Friend, as a Mom, I am horrified that your Mom has gone along with this. A week? Okay...6 months? No," another commented. "That is not temporary. That is out and out abandonment of her child."

Newsweek reached out to u/Awn2247 for comment.

Other Viral Posts

In another viral Reddit post, a mom was urged to tell her teen daughter about her ex-husband's affair before his upcoming wedding.

One teen was also praised online after refusing to meet their father's new "affair baby" and another Reddit user was backed for telling his younger siblings about their mom's secret affair.

If you have a similar family dilemma, let us know via life@newsweek.com. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.