r/AmItheAsshole 24d ago Gold 1 Platinum 1 Helpful 10 Wholesome 10 Hugz 1 Facepalm 1 Silver 13

AITA for canceling the plans for thanksgiving after my parents called my brother’s baby their “first grandchild”? Not the A-hole

update

I (32f) have been with my wife Ava (34f) for 8 years now, but we’ve been married for 5. She was a single mom of three kids when we started dating, she had two daughters (now 10 & 12) and a son (now 16). I’ve watched these kids grow up, I’ve read the bedtime stories, done bath time, the first days of school, pta meetings, all of it. I very much consider them to be my kids, and they’ve been calling me mom for almost 6 years now.

My brother Ivan (28m) just had a baby girl with his fiancé Sara (27f). I love my niece, and my kids adore their cousin. My kids have been the only grandchildren on my side of the family since Ava and I got together, and there’s never been a moment where the kids and my wife were treated like they didn’t belong. My brother is their uncle, my mom and dad are their nana and pop— the kids see my family as their family and I always thought that my family felt the same way about them.

The kids and I were over at my brother's house just hanging out, and my parents ended up dropping by with gifts for my niece. Ivan laughed when he saw the toys and told our mom and dad that they were going to end up spoiling her rotten. My mom said since my niece is their first grandchild of course they have to spoil her.

My kids were sitting in the living room with all of us and my youngest daughter looked hurt when she realized what my mother said. My son and my 12yo didn’t fully react to it, but I could tell it bothered the both of them too.

Sara spoke up and said “oh you mean first grandbaby, not first grandchild.”

My dad shook his head and replied that my niece was their first grandchild. I didn’t want my kids to keep sitting there and listening to that so I handed my son my keys and told him to wait in the car with his sisters. When they were gone, I asked my parents why the hell they’d say that my kids weren’t their grandchildren, and my mom said they couldn’t be their grandchildren because they weren’t really my children.

My wife and I were going to be hosting thanksgiving at our house this year, but I told my parents that if they didn’t view my kids as their family, then they could just host a meal at their own house with their “real” family while I spent the holiday with mine.

I left before they could say anything else to me, and my wife and I have reiterated to the children that they will always be my kids and I will always be their other mom, regardless of our DNA.

My brother is pissed at me now because he thinks I reacted too harshly, and that I should try to see where my parents are coming from. My mom texted saying that she and my dad love the kids, but they still aren’t their grandchildren, and she hopes that we can come to understand that because she doesn’t want this to ruin my niece’s first thanksgiving.

I haven’t replied back. I meant what I said, but I’m worried that maybe I’m reacting too harshly.

ETA INFO:

I adopted all three of the kids about 4 years ago, so they aren't just my parents "step grandchildren". Even if I hadn't legally adopted them, they'd still be my kids in my eyes.

Edit no.2:

  • My wife's parents don't have a relationship with the kids. When my wife came out, they pretty much stopped speaking with her entirely.
  • Their bio dad is not involved and neither is his family. He lost his rights to the children before Ava and I started dating. The 10yo has never met him, the 12yo doesn't remember him, and the 16yo wants nothing to do with him.
  • My parents wanted the kids to call them Nana and Pop. I didn't make the kids start calling them that.
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u/Judgement_Bot_AITA Beep Boop 24d ago

Welcome to /r/AmITheAsshole. Please view our voting guide here, and remember to use only one judgement in your comment.

OP has offered the following explanation for why they think they might be the asshole:

I cancelled the thanksgiving plans because my parents said that my kids weren't their grandkids. I know that I can't control how they feel, and that yes it's true my kids aren't related to them, but if they genuinely feel that way I don't think it should've been said in front of my children. Regardless, I think I might be an AH for reacting the way I did.

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u/dart1126 Pooperintendant [57] 24d ago Silver Gold Take My Energy Ally

NTA. Sister-in-law Sara is a rockstar…She totally tried to save that fumble. Your parents should have picked up on that and caught that pass and saved the situation . Instead they doubled down and argued the point. That’s extremely unfortunate and I’m sorry.

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u/NotSoAverage_sister Partassipant [3] 24d ago

This response made me think of Ross's dad in the Friends episode, where Rachel gives birth.

Jack Gellar: "My first grandchild!"

Ross: "What about Ben?"

Jack Gellar: "Well of course Ben, I meant my first granddaughter!"

Nice save Grandpa Gellar!

Although seriously, either Ross is a deadbeat dad to Ben, or the show just decided it was inconvenient to keep writing him and the ex-wife in.

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u/BatterUp2220 24d ago

It’s about damn time someone acknowledges this! Ben was such a big part of the show and then kinda faded away. Seemed like super shitty parenting, even if kids didn’t fit the show’s vibe.

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u/Agreeable_Monitor459 24d ago

Kids aren't allowed to work as long as adults and filming an episode can take quite a few hours. Plus I think the actors that played Ben were on several shows so they probably had limited time so they didn't write many episodes with Ben. I think the audience was supposed to assume that Ross was an involved father not a deadbeat Dad. 🤷🏿‍♀️

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u/palcatraz 24d ago Take My Energy

Ross is such an asshole in general (and was an asshole to his kid too early in) that it is hard not to just assume he’s a deadbeat too.

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u/DinosaurDomination Partassipant [2] 24d ago

A deadbeat and probably lost whatever custody he had. Ross Geller’s life was chaotic. I mean he had 3 divorces, there was his mental break, his job issues (my sandwich!), the fact whenever he did have Ben he had Monica or his parents or Rachel watch him instead and many, many other issues.

Dude was an unstable asshole.

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u/Mundane-Falcon1470 24d ago

monica was a better father to ben than ross was.

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u/Peter_Bazooka64 24d ago

Ross was 100% justified in being angry about the sandwich.

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u/Jorgenstern8 24d ago

Yeah there are a lot of things to dogpile Ross about and getting hacked off about the sammy ranks well near the bottom, if it goes on the list at all. Douchebag boss steals his food and then just throws it away, and then Ross is somehow the only one we're told got in any trouble? Unforgivable.

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u/sevamew Partassipant [2] 24d ago

I hate Ross and think he was a complete asshole, but the sandwich was completely justified. That guy didn't just STEAL it, HE THREW MOST OF IT OUT! And it was a super special once a year turkey dinner leftover sandwich!! I would have lost my shit too.

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u/acnhlovex 24d ago

And don’t forget it had The Moist Maker inside of it!

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u/GreeneyedSigma Pooperintendant [51] 24d ago

Thank you! He is an asshole.

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u/BatterUp2220 24d ago

Yes! He’s my least favorite character.

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u/whateverwhatever1235 24d ago

The kids playing Ben were Cole and Dylan sprouse so I always chalked his disappearance up to the actors getting too busy so they didn’t bother recasting.

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u/Corpuscular_Ocelot Partassipant [3] 24d ago

I mean, his kid didn't even make it to Ross's 2nd wedding. They had twins to use, lots of shows are able to film w/ kids.

It really was about the show being about young-ish people doing stupid things re: relationships. If Ross had the kid around 50% of the time not only would he be unable to hang out and/or sleep w/ his students, they would have to write funny lines for a growing kid, which is nearly impossible in a show aimed at adults.

It is almost impossible to believe Ross was an involved parent, since Ben almost never came up in conversation. The monkey got better treatment after leaving the show than Ben did. No mention of school events, recitals, grades, were there even any pictures of him? If the writers just threw a comment about Ross being late b/c he had to drop off Ben or Ben's hot teacher every once in awhile, it would have been fine, honestly.

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u/indyjumper 24d ago Helpful

Tbf, they knew they could catch the NEXT wedding

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u/Corpuscular_Ocelot Partassipant [3] 24d ago

Yeah, but then he missed the 3rd one too. Just because your dad is going to have 5 or 6+ weddings doesn't mean you skip the 2nd one b/c you have no idea when/how next ones will occur. You are missing out on one of the 50 or so most important days of your father's life. The day he marries one of the top 10 loves of his life. You can't miss something that important.

This is the life lesson I learned from watching Friends.

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u/glittrxbarf 24d ago

He would have been about 3 for the second wedding to Emily in London, it probably wouldn't make sense (real world or film world) to lug a 3 year old to another time zone for a wedding he won't remember. The third wedding was the drunk decision in Vegas and not having Ben there was probably Ross's most responsible parenting decision.

I'm not a Ross apologist, I just think there's way worse things he's done as a parent than not have his son at his second and third weddings.

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u/4evaneva 24d ago

Actors that played Ben - Cole and Dylan Sprouse aka Zac and Cody if anyone reading didn’t know!

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u/262run Partassipant [2] 24d ago

Only Cole played Ben. Dylan was not on the show.

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u/TigerBelmont Asshole Aficionado [14] 24d ago

The actor that played Ben called Ross a deadbeat dad a few years ago.

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u/boten_anna3 24d ago

I always kinda saw this as a meta-joke, like the show was pointing out the fact that the writers constantly forgot Ben existed and didn’t really bother with writing him in.

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u/hissyfit64 24d ago

Like Chuck on Happy Days. The older brother who was on maybe 3 episodes and then never brought up again.

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u/HerRoyalRedness 24d ago

He and that sister on Family Matters have been trapped in their rooms for decades!

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u/Legitimate-Tower-523 Partassipant [2] 24d ago

No kidding. She gave them an out and instead they doubled down.

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u/audioaddict321 24d ago

Mom is digging down to the Earth's core- don't let it ruin the baby's first Thanksgiving??? Ugh.

I'm gutted for OP, her wife, and their kids.

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u/alexopaedia 24d ago

I've never spent a ton of time with babies but my impression from my nephews is that for the first six months to a year, their participation in holidays is.....sleeping, feeding, pooing, cooing, being adorable, and crying. Sooooo same as every day. Not sure how this will be ruined for her.

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u/whats-ur-sign 24d ago

this! from what i've seen of babies in my family, the most exciting thing about a baby being there is being able to hold that baby. that baby is not going to remember one single moment of that day.

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u/[deleted] 24d ago edited 24d ago

[deleted]

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u/Noclevername12 24d ago

AND that they don’t want to ruin the BABY’s thanksgiving. That was amazing.

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u/soupseasonbestseason 24d ago

as if a baby gives a shit about thanksgiving.

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u/pourthebubbly Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I think she’s also the ally here to get the brother to come around. Clearly he’s more concerned about not having the smiling family photos to go with his kid’s first thanksgiving, but it sounds like Sara understands a lot better than he does.

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u/magneticeverything 24d ago Silver Take My Energy

I feel for the brother a little bit, tbh. I think he feels distressed by the idea of a rift where he and his family are caught in the middle, and at a loss of what to do. I’ll point out that we don’t know what he’s said to the parents, if he’s tried to intercede on his sister’s behalf, and is just kinda playing both sides to try to get them to reconcile. I imagine the brother thinks he’s being neutral, trying to get everyone to get along equally, but doesn’t realize it’s coming across as an endorsement of parents words, because he probably has never experienced a microaggression like his queer sister or her adopted children. It can be hard to explain to someone who’s never experienced it how cutting microaggressions are. He probably has no idea how hurtful the statement was. He wants everyone to get along again, but he doesn’t realize how that this serious a hurt needs to be repaired before it can be forgiven and moved on from. And he probably doesn’t realize that she’s perceiving his inaction as picking a side.

This feels like a pivotal moment. If this doesn’t get resolved by thanksgiving and OP ends up celebrating alone, things will become much harder to mend, bc they’ll always remember that if it came down to it, their parents chose their brother’s family over theirs, and the brother chose their parents over OP.

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u/Exciting-Ant4077 24d ago

Your response makes me wonder if there is some homophobia with the parents.

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u/magneticeverything 24d ago Helpful Hugz Timeless Beauty

Even if it’s not the parents, it’s something she’s experienced in her life. Most people think of microaggressions as lesser incidents, but they still carry all the weight of blatant homophobic incidents. The slurs aren’t said out loud, but you know they’re “othering” you, even if only subconsciously.

For adoptees and children of unconventional/blended families, microaggressions are often unintentional, (kids living with non blood-relations isn’t a protected class, obviously.) But it still can be cutting to field questions about your family like it’s abnormal, or hear offhanded comments about blood-heritage topics. ( can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve had this exact conversation: “You don’t look irish!” “Oh, well I’m adopted, but my family is Irish, so that’s my heritage.” “Oh that makes more sense, you look like… Italian or Latin or something, you’re way too dark to be Irish!” “But that’s the only heritage I’ve ever known, and that’s where my family traditions come from.” “Yeah, but you’re not like… really irish!”) Nearly any adoptee has been confronted with a family tree project or “day I was born” essay that put them in a weird, upsetting position.

And that constant defending your family and your place in your family to outsiders wears on you. It sticks with you and makes you insecure about how you fit into all sorts of other groups. To hear it from someone inside the family would be utterly devastating. It would probably destroy me, frankly. Especially at such a formative age like that.

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u/ffunffunffun5 24d ago

I'm gay and when I read the story it struck as being more about the children not being biologically related than about them coming into the family through a same sex marriage. Don't get me wrong, either way the grandparents behavior is appalling and they should be called out for it, but I honestly don't think this is just homophobia.

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u/onlythebitterest 24d ago

Yes this stuck out to me too. OP has adopted all the children officially too though. Would the grandparents not recognise any adopted children as real family/grandchildren? What if one of their kids was infertile?

To have a view of family based solely on genetics is whack IMO, and it also does open the door to homophobia IMO as well. (The whole, you're not a really family because you can't have biological children argument is sickening).

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u/babygirlruth 24d ago

Sara is a good person. I'd probably include her and her newborn child in your Thanksgiving as well, and your parents and brother can have their petty one by themselves, OP (/j)

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u/christikayann 24d ago

Instead they doubled down and argued the point.

You are so right. Not only did they double down they did it in front of the kids! Sara is 100% rockstar but the rest of OP's family sucks.

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u/Misty2484 24d ago

They even tripled down later on the phone! Like it was CLEAR by then how upset their daughter was by what they’d said and they couldn’t find any kindness to show her and just not keep saying that stupid shit? They sound terrible.

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u/Curious-One4595 Asshole Enthusiast [5] 24d ago

Holy hell, NTA. Your parents are awful. Even if they have these unfortunate feelings, they should know well enough to be diplomatic and not say them out loud, let alone say them in front of your children.

Your brother should be on your side also.

Your mom and dad ruined thanksgiving when they slammed a wrecking ball into family unity and love. Ugh.

Edit: This is definitely a case where you should send your parents the link to this post. They need to see that they are being universally condemned.

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u/runciblepen 24d ago

"Don't want to ruin their REAL grandchild's first Thanksgiving." Like an infant has any concept of holiday dinners. Pretty obvious where their awful priorities are.

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u/Misty2484 24d ago

Right?! Never mind how scarring what they just said was to the three children who have loved them for 8 years, can’t let the infant who has no concept of Thanksgiving or family for that matter, have a bad first Thanksgiving.

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u/runciblepen 24d ago Take My Energy

As miserable as it is, I can see how in their hearts they might think of this new grandchild as their first. What I ABSOLUTELY CANNOT FORGIVE is not only saying that miserable thought out loud, but saying saying it in front of those poor kids, apparently being willing to die on this hill, and thinking everyone should be ok about it. If they are so out of touch they didn't realize how hurtful this would be they should at least have had the decency to reverse and apologize once it was pointed out to them.

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u/zeldon9 24d ago

NTA and agree on everything. OP should get Sara a bottle of wine or a spa certificate or something. She’s the only one who defended your family. Make sure she knows you saw that, it’ll go a long way.

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u/Environmental-Ad2143 24d ago

Agree! Love Sara!

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u/Minimum_Ad_4120 24d ago

Was coming to also praise Sara. Please send her a text or call and thank her. She is a Rockstar.

NTA

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u/SWowwTittybang 24d ago

Oh for a second I didn't realize Sara was the SIL. My MS has affected my brain a little too much so it takes me more time to figure stuff out. But seriously, Sara is awesome. And OP I'm sorry you're going through this. It just be pretty hard to see your kids hurt like that. But they are super lucky to have you and your wife.

Definitely NTA. And I hope you and your family have an awesome Thanksgiving 💗

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u/AZJHawk Asshole Enthusiast [8] 24d ago Silver Wholesome

NTA. That was a really shitty thing of your parents to think, let alone say, let alone say in front of your kids. You are completely justified in your reaction. If it were me, I don’t know if it is something that could be fixed with a simple apology.

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u/throwawayz_12345 24d ago Wholesome Take My Energy

The worst part of it for me is that they said it in front of them. I'd still be upset knowing they thought it, but the look on my youngest daughter's face when she heard my mother say that just broke my heart.

I tend to go mama bear whenever I even think someone has stepped out of line with the kids, so I was worried that maybe I was doing too much in my reaction. My brother still feels like I should talk it out with them, but I don't know that I could forgive it honestly.

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u/McflyThrowaway01 Certified Proctologist [28] 24d ago Gold

Your brother is more concerned about his daughters first Thanksgiving. Let's be real. If he wasn't, he would be telling you that it doesn't matter what they said, he doesn't feel that way and agree with you and be fine with them being out of Thanksgiving. That is what a sibling does in this situation. They stand up for their sibling and their kids because they would never want their child feeling that way.

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u/May_I_inquire Partassipant [1] 24d ago Wearing is Caring

Their concern for the granddaughters first Thanksgiving is also stupid, a literal BABY ain't going to remember it at all. So nothing could ruin a baby's first Thanksgiving.

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u/Server_Administrator Partassipant [1] 24d ago edited 24d ago Silver Helpful Wholesome Heartwarming Wholesome Seal of Approval Table Slap I'll Drink to That Evil Cackle I'm Deceased Yummy Wholesome (Pro)

Unless the baby gets mistaken for the turkey.

Edit: Which one of you sickos gave this a wholesome award?

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u/somethinggood332 24d ago edited 24d ago Wholesome

One of our dogs makes a strangled turkey noise whenever he sees something he wants to chase, so every November we start telling him that he's going to end up being somebody's Thanksgiving feast if he doesn't stop.

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u/JadeSpade23 24d ago Sidevote

Yeah, what they really mean is they aren't going to get the nice "family" pictures they thought they were going to get. It's gonna spoil it for the adults. Also, now the g-parents and brother have to figure what to do for a big dinner at Thanksgiving. Someone has to host it lol

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u/May_I_inquire Partassipant [1] 24d ago

Brand new parents certainly aren't going to have the energy to host or cook, or clean.

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u/mitsuhachi 24d ago

Sounds like not OPs problem. Randomly excluding her children for being adopted is beyond shitty. If the family wanted her to do for them, they shouldn’t have been assholes to OPs kids.

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u/Lazyoat Partassipant [1] 24d ago

Which is ridiculous, no one remembers a first thanksgiving, but op’s kids will remember this

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u/GiraffeGirlLovesZuri 24d ago Take My Energy

Exactly!! Oh no let's not ruin the babies first Thanksgiving. But screw the 10, 12, and 16 year olds whole feeling of being part of this family. They are adopted, so legally they are just as much grandchildren to the grandparents as the baby is.

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u/AlekiaoftheNorth 24d ago

Right! And why are OP's parents letting the kids call them Nana and Pop if they don't see them as grandkids?

OP, definitely NTA. I'm so glad you took the time to reassure your kids after too.

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u/Big_Clock_716 24d ago

Oh they sort of did see them as grandkids (or at least fill ins) until their hetero son spawned, then they pretty much yeeted the kids previously known as grands into the Grand Canyon. I sense some GC/SG play and possibly some previously well disguised homophobia. That might just be me though...

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u/Rose8918 24d ago edited 24d ago Silver Gold Helpful Wholesome All-Seeing Upvote Take My Energy Bravo! Starry Heartwarming Vibing Bless Up Eureka! Timeless Beauty Awesome Answer

I would honestly just text them back and be like, “you two are so disappointing. These are my children. They thought of you as their grandparents and you essentially spit in their faces. Maybe it never occurred to you to care how hurtful it would be to them to hear you say that, but they’re devastated. And I can’t believe someone who says they ‘love’ them would intentionally make them feel that way. (Niece) is not cognizant of thanksgiving yet, so our absence can’t ruin it for your only grandchild, and I need time to consider if I can risk exposing my children to that kind of cruelty ever again. I don’t really see why you’d be upset getting to focus all of your holiday energy on the only child in this family who counts, so don’t worry about us not being there.”

Edit: thank you guys so much for all the awards!

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u/foxykathykat 24d ago

100% all of this

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u/FaveFoodIsLesbeans 24d ago

This is a great reply. I think the best part is where you mentioned that the kids saw them as grandparents. If that doesn’t affect OP’s parents then nothing will and it’s a lost cause.

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u/Open-Ad2183 24d ago

Wish I could upvote this more than once

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u/greenchrissy 24d ago edited 24d ago

I upvoted this (wish i could more than once), because this response is PERFECT. OP, please use this.

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u/Due-Science-9528 24d ago Take My Power

Yeah even if I didn’t see them as my grandkids I would’ve kept my mouth shut! They can feel however they want but they can’t go around basically telling kids that their grandparents don’t love them. Absolutely mental.

NTA OP and every older person in my family happily plays grandma/grandpa/auntie/uncle for not just the step kids of their grandkids but also the children of family friends and whatnot. Your parents are bizarrely cruel.

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u/kristycocopop 24d ago

This! ☝️☝️☝️☝️☝️

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u/mouse_attack 24d ago

You already know what they’re going to say: “genetics, uterus, blah, blah, blah…”

They’ve clarified their point of view (now). If talking it out isn’t going to sway hearts, and might give you an aneurysm (it would me) — then just skip it.

You know what ruins Thanksgiving for an infant? Having their grandparents drive a wedge between them and their aunts and cousins while they’re still pre-verbal. Puts a real pall over turkey and stuffing.

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u/eregyrn 24d ago

I mean, technically, nothing ruins Thanksgiving for an infant. They have no idea what is going on, they don't even know what days of the week are, let alone holidays. And they aren't eating any of the food. I mean, really.

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u/leolionbag Partassipant [2] 24d ago

I know. That was a pretty weak excuse from the mother. That kid is going to be asleep by the time the appetizers are passed.

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u/mouse_attack 24d ago edited 24d ago

I know, too. I was just hoping my /s would come across.

It’s actually offensive. These people just dis-claimed three fully-aware kids who saw them as grandparents — and now the only child’s experience they care about is the baby’s?

It’s insult after injury, is what it is.

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u/JomolaMomo Partassipant [1] 24d ago

You know what really galls me is that Sara was the only adult in the room to pick up on the nuance of what your patents said. She gave those morons an easy out by correcting them, and they doubled down. And then your idiot brother joined in with his stupid justification.

How did you end up being the most awesome one of the bunch?!?

And I say that with all sincerity- it takes a particularly awesome person to raise children that are not their own flesh and blood. To be willing to go through sleepless nights, teething, potty training, puberty and all the other things that go along with raising a happy and successful adult. I sure don't know how you managed to get your head screwed o to your shoulders the right way, but you have. Your kids are so lucky to have you as their Mom 2!

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u/Professional_Vast615 24d ago

Your kids are so lucky to have you as their Mom 2!

She earned that. The nerve on them saying it means jack shit to them, what an insult to OP and her kids.

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u/fluidentity Partassipant [1] 24d ago

This comment gives me the need to go hug my wife… stepmom to my children (18m and 14f) for the last 9 years. Thank you for the reminder.

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u/FlightoftheBeeMovie 24d ago Hugz

OP, as a “not really a grandchild” myself (biologically related but born out of wedlock which was a big deal to them), I can tell you how this is gonna go.

Focusing on your family during Thanksgiving is the way to go. I would also recommend that you do not involve your parents in Christmas. I spent every childhood Christmas watching the “real” grandkids open dozens of presents. I might get one or two little things, like a tool for work or a pair of socks in someone else’s size. My memories of Christmas were all of watching other people exclude me.

I started refusing to go as a teen, and I didn’t celebrate Christmas for the next thirty years.

That’s how grandparents are going to act when they view certain grandkids as worth a lot more than others. It sucks.

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u/TrelanaSakuyo Asshole Enthusiast [9] 24d ago Silver

I can confirm this, as a grandchild that was ignored because they just hated my mother that much. I got to hear about my cousins getting all these great things when I would have been happy with just one or two things from my Christmas list that I never got. I even watched them drive to our house on the way to Disney World during the summer and leave my brother and I behind, didn't even offer for us to come with them. They had room, they could afford it, mom would have given them money if they couldn't.

We were in their area after a hurricane evacuation. My grandmother tried to hug me and complained I was hugging her like a complete stranger. I was 17. My father, amazing and wonderfully brilliant man that he was, told her "well, you are! She doesn't know you, mom! You haven't seen her for more than fifteen minutes since she was two! You never called, you never visited, you never wrote, what else did you expect?" I love my dad dearly, and that is a treasured moment for me.

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u/SunnyWomble 24d ago

Your Dads a badass

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u/TrelanaSakuyo Asshole Enthusiast [9] 24d ago

Thanks! I always thought so too. As I got older, I realized just how much of one he's been over the years.

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u/The_Jade_Rabbit88 24d ago edited 24d ago

I feel this from being an unwanted grandkid (grandparents hated my dad). Not fun of a holiday when you are your cousins treated so different from you and your siblings. My brother boycotts that side of that family still and I keep my distance minus a cousin who realized now as a dad what they did.

Hope OP can celebrate the holidays in a way that celebrates family blood ties or not.

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u/Kiwipopchan 24d ago

Well tbh it’s easy for your brother to feel that way. His kid is a “real” grandchild. I would bet he would be feeling very differently if the roles were reversed. Perhaps bring that up to him, what if his daughter had not been his biologically? (For whatever reason, sperm donor, a child from a previous marriage, or whatever). Would he still be having the same reaction, would he be trying to think about it from their standpoint? Probably not.

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u/EscapeFromTexas 24d ago

You know what ruins Thanksgiving for an infant?

LITERALLY NOTHING. This child will not remember anything for a good 2-5 Thanksgivings in a goddamn row. Your parents are shitty.

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u/Kiwipopchan 24d ago

Yuuup. The baby is more likely to be the one ruining thanksgiving than anything else! Not saying niece will just saying that babies tend to be loud and messy. Annnnnd literally won’t remember anything about it.

OP’s mom meant: don’t ruin the first holiday that I get to enjoy with a reeeeeeaallll grandchild, not for something as frivolous as the feelings of your not actually yours children.

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u/CoffeeSippingCat Partassipant [2] 24d ago

No, you weren’t doing too much. One of your children was visibly upset. You’ve adopted them, they’re yours. How very, very hurtful of your parents. They might just have shown you who they really are. I hope not. To echo what someone else said, Sara is amazing for trying to course-correct them. What you did was act like a great parent, keep making those children feel loved and secure.

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u/Professional_Ad9013 Asshole Enthusiast [8] 24d ago

How do you talk that out, though? They said it, they meant to say it, they verified that that's what they meant, which leaves no room for discussion.

It was at best totally thoughtless, at worst intentionally cruel. I'm proud of you for immediately stepping up for your kids' wellbeing.

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u/fearlessterror 24d ago

They doubled down TWICE. In the moment and then in the "apology/rugsweep/guilt trip tour" .my heart hurts for you and your kids. Your family (save Sara depending on how she carries on from here put) are the worst. Honestly you are not only NTA but an example of grace and strength. I would be she.hulking out in an undignified way right now.

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u/WithEyesWideOpen 24d ago

It's also very telling that the concern your parents had wasn't fixing this with your kids, but not ruining your niece's first Thanksgiving... They aren't taking even the slightest responsibility.

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u/Jallenrix Partassipant [2] 24d ago

There is nothing to discuss. Some bells cannot be un-rung. Your kids know their grandparents see them as “less than” and I wouldn’t subject them to it.

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u/tierzu 24d ago

Now you know how they really feel. Your kids were just placeholders to them. Of course your brother thinks you were too harsh when he stands to benefit from their behavior. It would still be horrible, but if they had been honest since you first started dating your wife that they'd never see the kids as their grandkids it would be much less devastating than letting them believe they actually cared about them for the past 8 years.

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u/eregyrn 24d ago

You're completely in the right. You're NOT being too harsh. NTA.

Knowing that your parents thought that way would be bad enough. Knowing that they have probably thought that way *all this time* is bad enough.

Their being so thoughtless as to just say all that *in front of kids* who have regarded them as their grandparents for all these years? I cannot even fathom that level of thoughtlessness.

It's not just that they hurt you, and your wife. They hurt the kids. Apparently without even thinking of their feelings.

Honestly, I'm with you -- at this point, I don't even know what could make this right. But it's not going to come from "talking it out", and it isn't a matter of you coming to see their viewpoint or something stupid like that. Your parents would need to realize why what they did was cruel, why their viewpoint is wrong and hurtful, and think of some way to right that wrong.

I don't know if they can do it on their own. Maybe your SIL can help them, because she seems to be the only person with any understanding of what they did wrong. But it shouldn't be your burden to argue with your parents to see their error and help them fix it. IMO, the only way that an attempt by them to fix things will feel sincere is if they arrive at the idea and the willingness to do it on their own. Otherwise it's going to feel like them going through motions to appease you, rather than really understanding and meaning it.

I'm so sorry. But I think you're right not to let this slide for the sake of family peace or something.

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u/lorienne22 Partassipant [2] 24d ago

NTA. People who hurt my children like that never got to see them again. Bye, Babcia!

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u/Little-Martha31204 Partassipant [4] 24d ago

My heart dropped for those kids! I can't imagine what they were feeling.

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u/unknown_928121 24d ago edited 24d ago Silver Platinum Hugz LOVE! Starry

I was the child who was told I wasn't really family once someone biological came along.

It's been nearly 20 years since that moment and I still remember it as if it was a second ago

NTA

Thank you so much for the awards, my little heart is all a flutter 💜

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u/throwawayz_12345 24d ago

I am so sorry that anyone ever said something so cruel to you, especially as a child. Family is so much more than blood.

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u/act006 24d ago

I literally have that statement tattooed on my leg. My stepsister is my sister. My mom is her mom. You are your kids' parent. Screw anyone who says otherwise.

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u/conchitu Asshole Aficionado [17] 24d ago

What does the tattoo say? would love to know ❤️

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u/RIPCarlGrimes 24d ago

Maybe it's:

"Family don't end with blood" - Bobby Singer

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u/BabytheTardisImpala 24d ago

I was thinking it too! I miss me some Bobby.

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u/RubyGemWolf 24d ago

Op it's kinda the better to know how they really feel. I was close with my step grandma but after she died I found out she didn't really even care at all. Even had her real granddaughter scream grandma would only want her real grandkids to have this. It was a baby blanket that she put in will every grandkids gets one.

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u/t0rt01s3 24d ago

You did right. This type of thing stays with children. My “grandparents” always treated my younger brother and sister just a little differently, they called us their grandchildren, but it felt different. Then, when a huge traumatic event happened and all the grandkids went NC, they didn’t give a fuck about me and other brother, only the two “real” grandchildren.

It sucked as a kid, it sucked as an adult. Thanks for being such an amazing and loving parent!

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u/Bell957 Partassipant [1] 24d ago Hugz Coin Gift Heartwarming

My own adoptive father once told me “as much as we’d like for you to be our daughter, you are not. You do understand, don’t you?” I’ve never forgotten any single details, not even what he was wearing, so traumatic it was. I understand how you feel, hugs to you!

OP is an awesome mum, and Sara is the best aunt ever.

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u/hotheadnchickn Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I’m so sorry you end through that. Can’t imagine why someone who thinks that way would adopt a child.

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u/Bell957 Partassipant [1] 24d ago Silver

(Thank you for the awards and the lovely message, Kind Internet Strangers 🥰💗)

Well, I think he did it due to social and emotional reasons. I might be wrong. I know Mum wanted a kid real bad (no gender preferences) and he wanted a son. Society was pressing him to have kids. They couldn’t conceive, though.

So, they bought me in the dark market (no kidding). Unfortunately I am a girl, there were no male children in stock at the time /s. Mum kept on trying for 7-8 years to conceive. When it was obvious they would never get pregnant, they looked at getting a son through a distant relative (they worked in an orphanage). That’s the horror story, lol.

And yeah, I don’t understand why you say someone is your kid just in some situations, or not fully your child (or grandchildren for that matter). It’s a love issue: your family is those you love despite it all and who love you back.

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u/LetThemEatVeganCake Partassipant [3] 24d ago

Why the hell did he adopt if that’s his mindset? SMH, I’m sorry you dealt with that.

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u/yellowbrownstone 24d ago

My own biological father once said he was finally going on vacation with the “whole family.” My brother and I from before his current marriage were not invited and I was very busy so I had not been upset to miss out on Hawaii but I was absolutely gutted to find out that they thought we were optional while the core members were what mattered. I still remember where I was standing, what I had in my hands, where dad was, where my brother was. We left and got hammered playing poker for the rest of Christmas Day but that was at least 15 years ago. Your dad and my dad can kick rocks together bc fuck them.

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u/MaintenanceWine 24d ago

Oh god, that made the breath leave my body. As an adoptive Mom, I am so sorry. That should never have happened to you. Just …mind-bendingly cruel. I’m so sorry.

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u/anacidghost 24d ago Wholesome All-Seeing Upvote

Verily, verily I say unto thee: fuck whoever said that to you

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u/koeligt 24d ago

I too was that child.

The even more ridiculous thing was that my stepfather is adopted so his biological child isn't even his parents biological grandchild.

But apparently it still made a difference.

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u/Meriadoxm Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I am so sorry for you that’s horrible. I have an adopted cousin who was adopted before I was born and they has always been as much my cousin as my bio ones, in fact even more so now because they are one of the only ones I’m in regular contact with as an adult. I also have a step niece and while I live far away from my family so I don’t get to see my niblings as much as I’d like I always treat them the same. I have a special day with each of my bio and step niblings when I visit and I send them same value Christmas and birthday presents. It would break my heart if my niece felt like she was less than in the family simply because she isn’t bio. Nobody deserves that and blood doesn’t make family.

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u/should_be_writing1 Partassipant [1] 24d ago

Damn, Sara even gave them an out with the “oh you mean grand baby” comment, which is a slip of tongue I can see people saying unintentionally, but they doubled down twice!

NTA

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u/AzureMagelet Asshole Enthusiast [7] 24d ago

Right? Go Sara! Keep that woman in your life she knows what’s up.

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u/ScorchieSong Pooperintendant [51] 24d ago

Definitely invite her to Thanksgiving.

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u/LifeFailure 24d ago

I mean by grandparent's definition she's not their REAL daughter bc she only married into the family and has no shared DNA🤷‍♀️ clearly anyone who does not carry their precious bloodline isn't worthy of their TRUE love, just another less important kind of love.

So yeah she might want to dip out of that "family" thanksgiving, too.

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u/JWilesParker 24d ago

OP should only invite Sara and the niece. The brother can go to Nana and Pop's.

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u/Sure_Tree_5042 24d ago

Sara for the save, and then they are like… “nope… these kids right here ain’t nothing to us.”

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u/babygirlruth 24d ago

Right? How horrible do you have to be to say this in front of the children

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u/Sure_Tree_5042 24d ago

Like kids you have been “grandparents” to since they were like 2, 4, and 8….

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u/lordliv Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I was going to say! The younger two probably don’t remember a life where they all weren’t family. So horrible for them.

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u/FoxBun_17 Partassipant [4] 24d ago

Came to say this. Those youngest kids have likely gone their entire lives with these people as their grandparents, whether they were aware of the distinction of bio-relatives or not.

I can only imagine how the family they've known their entire lives could say something so horrible in front of them.

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u/linandlee 24d ago

I'm pretty but I'd invite Sara and the baby over and tell brother and parents they're out lol. If Sara is as badA as I think she is she might actually go for it lol.

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u/VelvetElixir9 24d ago

You are pretty, but I think you meant petty. Also I entirely agree with that. Sara and baby in, those other fuckers? Nah they out.

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u/louloutre75 Partassipant [1] 24d ago

And trice as god forbids the newborn's first thanksgiving be ruined. Grandpa showed very clearly where his priorities were.

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u/dublos Professor Emeritass [78] 24d ago

NTA

Your parents were deeply wrong.

My mom texted saying that she and my dad love the kids, but they still aren’t their grandchildren, and she hopes that we can come to understand that because she doesn’t want this to ruin my niece’s first thanksgiving.

They're just digging themselves deeper, aren't they.

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u/pcnauta Partassipant [4] 24d ago

People really choose the stupidest 'hills to die on', don't they?

OP's parents clearly know that:

  • OP's children look to them as their grandparents
  • OP sees the children as HER children
  • OP and the children are deeply hurt and offended by their statements
  • they risk losing all contact with OP and her children

and yet, they double, triple and even quadruple down on it instead of 'reading the room' and at least pretending that they are their grandchildren.

Years from now they'll be on estranged parents boards complaining that they don't know why they haven't seen their daughter and grandchildren in years and years.

Oh, and NTA.

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u/Nickei88 Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I doubt they would gaf. They got their blood grandchild and for some people, that is more than enough.

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u/ZantaraLost Partassipant [3] 24d ago

The thing is, with how quick Sara showed them an 'out' to save the situation I have a sneaky suspicion that she's going to push her husband to take a HUGE step back from them over this.

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u/okilz 24d ago

We can only hope

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u/GlitterDoomsday 24d ago

Yep, between giving her daughter two grandparents that admittedly want to spoil her and 3 cousins to grow up with.... is clear what the best longterm choice is, specially if this baby is gonna be an only child.

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u/BarnDoorHills 24d ago

I was thinking especially if this baby isn't going to be an only child. If Sara and OP's brother have a boy, the grandparents will likely shift their affections yet again.

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u/CuriousPenguinSocks Asshole Enthusiast [6] 24d ago

I sincerely hope they do, I hope they go to OPs house for Thanksgiving and have a great time. That would really show the grandparents what's up.

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u/scrapsforfourvel 24d ago

With the timing right before the holiday season and already buying likely too much for the baby (that comment about spoiling the baby sounded a lot like polite parent speak for, "please stop buying us all this useless junk we have to find space for for a baby with zero awareness of the concept of gifts"), I think their statement and doubling down was intentional to justify why they won't be spending as much on OP's kids compared to the baby for future holidays, even if finances aren't an issue.

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u/Mitchxhell Partassipant [1] 24d ago edited 24d ago

Yeah this was the most disgusting part. I would disown them but be thankful they showed their true colors.I’ll tell the kids they died so it can hurt less than being thought of as nothing to people who exist.edit- spelling

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u/AppleThrower5000 Partassipant [1] 24d ago

NTA, god forbid they ruin thanksgiving for the newborn who would definitely rather not go and can't eat any of the food 😂

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u/Wonderful_Horror7315 Partassipant [2] 24d ago

I was thinking, “when did Baby’s First Thanksgiving” become a thing?

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u/eregyrn 24d ago

It's the same as Baby's First Christmas and Baby's First Birthday. It's purely for the parents and other family. Baby does not care and is not really capable of "appreciating" it.

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u/Nik-ki Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I get those slightly more, because hey, prezents! Baby can at least destroy some wrapping paper for fun. As far as I know (and I don't celebrate Thanksgiving, I'm Polish) there is no child specific or even child friendly aspect to Thanksgiving, is there?

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u/Hyacathusarullistad Asshole Enthusiast [8] 24d ago Silver

NTA. Your parents seemed to be fine letting your kids consider them grandparents for years. Nothing should change just because someone has squirted out a baby they share DNA with. That means this whole time they've really only considered your kids some kind of twisted consolation prize.

And as if that wasn't heartbreaking enough, they decide it's fine to say this with your children in the room?! That's absolutely vile, and even if they apologise and backpedal I'd think twice about the level of contact and intimacy they're allowed with your children.

You did exactly the right thing, and don't let anyone lead you to believe otherwise.

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u/throwawayz_12345 24d ago Hugz Tearing Up

I hate it so much honestly. My wife's parents have wanted nothing to do with her since she came out, so my parents were the only grandparents our kids really had. I had no idea that they felt like this about my children the whole time.

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u/BentBent12 Certified Proctologist [29] 24d ago

Why did they let the kids call them grandparent names if they thought they weren’t really their grandparents?? Your parents are horribly cruel. I’m sorry. You did the right thing by canceling.

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u/sleepygrumpydoc 24d ago

The grandparents allowed it because OPs kids were filling the grandkid role until something "real" came about. The grandparents are the worst. I bet they use to brag about the grandkids all the time too. They are also the only grandparents the youngest would have ever known.

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u/MaintenanceWine 24d ago

They probably only bragged to show off how “accepting” they are. OP adopted these kids they ARE her children in every way. There should be no second-tier, for fuck’s sake.

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u/sleepygrumpydoc 24d ago

1000% agree! I don't even care that she legally adopted the kids, she had taken on a parental role, they are her kids and her kids see her as their mom. Nothing more should matter.

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u/kevwelch Partassipant [1] 24d ago Silver All-Seeing Upvote

This begs the question of how accepting your parents are. Did they ever fully accept you, or were they just tolerating your “difference” until your brother could get married and put things back on track for them.

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u/[deleted] 24d ago

This is an aspect of the whole thing that I don't think is getting enough traction; thank you for putting it out there better than I could!

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u/PureLawfulness6404 24d ago

If op had birthed some children, it sounds like they would have been classified as grandchildren.

If op's brother was sterile and had use a sperm donor, would that baby also not be their grandchild?

Blood is all that matters to them, and it's honestly just sad.

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u/JomolaMomo Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I am so sorry! But please remember that a relationship with grandparents who treat them as someone less deserving of their love, is not worth the damage they will do to your kids!

Go to a nursing home - you can find plenty of older, lonely folks who would be willing to love your kids, like a grandparent should. That would be a far better thing than trying to keep a relationship with your parents and brother alive for your kids' sake.

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u/SlinkyMalinky20 Asshole Aficionado [16] 24d ago

NTA and I’m boggled that they doubled down on it. And the audacity to say that they don’t want it to ruin the new baby’s first Thanksgiving. New babies are like potted plants at this stage - they don’t care about Thanksgiving. Your parents legitimately ruined the thankful holiday for kids who can and do remember now.

Hold the line and protect your family. Your parents and brothers are being beyond hurtful and they don’t seem to care.

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u/Fire_or_water_kai 24d ago

"New babies are like potted plants..."

That line had me rolling. So true. Actually, everything you said is spot on.

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u/Pristine-Rhubarb7294 Partassipant [3] 24d ago

Yup when my first friends had babies I was like “are you sure the baby is okay to come have coffee with us (or go for a walk or whatever).” And my friend described her baby as a very heavy purse at that stage and she was so right 😂. As long as the baby was fed and warm we probably could have plotted the overthrow of capitalism and it wouldn’t have cared.

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u/Kittykittymeowmeow_ 24d ago

My favorite thing as a baby was plots to overthrow capitalism! Kept me occupied for hours

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u/McflyThrowaway01 Certified Proctologist [28] 24d ago Wholesome Starry Rocket Like

NTA

Your parents essentially used your children as their stand in grandchildren until the baby came. If your brother didn't have a kid, they would still be the grandparents they were. They literally said that in front of your kids, basically telling them that their time is over. Your brother as a parent himself who has a relationship with your kids, is now basking in the love and attention your parents are showing him.

I would ask your brother how he would feel if your wife and kids refused to call him uncle or his kid cousin and said they were not part of their family and made sure his kid heard it. How could he support any child being treated like this as a parent?

Your parents literally said that they aren't concerned about YOUR FEELINGS OR YOUR KIDS FEELINGS, ONLY THE BABY NIECES THANKSGIVING.

Tell your mom that the fact that she is more concerned about your nieces first Thanksgiving than making things right with you and your kids whose feelings she hurt, is the exact reason why she isnt invited anymore. And it's also the reason why you won't have your kids around her or any of them again. That they won't grow up being told and shown that they are not part of the family.

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u/w84itagain 24d ago

Tell your mom that the fact that she is more concerned about your nieces first Thanksgiving than making things right with you and your kids whose feelings she hurt, is the exact reason why she isnt invited anymore.

This really seals the deal for me. Not only did she double down on letting you know your kids aren't "real" grandchildren, she stomps on them and you further by worrying about the feelings of an infant (!?!?!) over those of real, aware children. Children who up until that moment thought they were part of a loving family.

I'm really sorry, OP, but your parents are really cruel. They deliberately hurt your children. Because rest assured, this could be nothing other than deliberate when they refused the out they were given and simply reaffirmed that yes, their cruelty is absolutely to be taken as intended. Your children are not really a part of the family.

You need to cut them off from your children immediately. There is no reason they should be subjected to such willful cruelty any longer. Or you, for that matter. Easiest reason for going no contact that I have seen in a while.

NTA

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u/LarkspurSong 24d ago

Sara handed them the perfect opportunity to fix their statement and your parents doubled down. That’s got to be so upsetting for the kids. It would have been so very easy for your parents to just say they were excited for the first baby just to spare your children’s feelings, but they didn’t even care enough to do that much. That’s cold. Very cold.

NTA and if I were Ivan and Sara I’d be very concerned with how your parents clear favoritism would impact their daughter’s relationship with her cousins. Children notice these things even without it being spelled out for them, and your parents went ahead and plainly announced that kid is going to be their favorite.

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u/Maleficent_Mistake50 Partassipant [1] 24d ago

I think the only MVP here is Sara. Ivan is also showing his true colors when he had the nerve to tell OP she was overreacting.

NTA at all.

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u/Friendly_Shelter_625 Partassipant [3] 24d ago

If I was Sara, I’d be feeling a little concerned about Ivan rn too

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u/Lundy_trainee 24d ago

Absolutely! What if Ivan & Sara's child (or future children) are queer or have blended families? I'm betting that Sara's mind has gone there. OP's parents & brother's masks have slipped. NTA OP. Not even a little bit. Cancel Thanksgiving and enjoy your holiday with your wife and YOUR kids! Hugs from this Internet Stranger and Proud Mama Bear; ALL THE WAY!

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u/missceegee 24d ago

This... I feel for those kiddos. I've had to deal with shitty family members and it's never left me... Unfortunately that will be a core memory that they left those kids with. Good to get them out of that situation mom. Damage is done. They will always give more attention etc to the niece. NTA

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u/Fun-Dimension5196 24d ago

Yikes! You don't let kids call you Nana and Pop for years and then declare they aren't your grandchildren. NTA

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u/hard-work1990 24d ago

That might be a good way of communicating to the parents how unsettling it is. If they are used to being called grandma and grandpa throwing out the first names will definitely be a shock that might get through their thick skulls.

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u/NorthernLitUp Professor Emeritass [72] 24d ago

NTA. You gave your parents a chance to walk back their unfortunate comments and they doubled down. For them to say that in front of your kids is inexcusable. You absolutely did the right thing. I don't even know how your parents can fix this but I certainly hope they bend over backwards trying.

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u/EddaValkyrie Colo-rectal Surgeon [41] 24d ago

What they said is already so awful, but for it to be said in front of the children, and then for them to double down after being given an out; I don't think it's fixable at all. Those kids are old enough where it's not going to be something they can just forget and I bet they're not as keen towards nana and pop anymore.

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u/mm172 Sultan of Sphincter [838] 24d ago Helpful

NTA. Tell them that if they’re convinced they’ve only got one grandkid whose holidays they need to worry about ruining, they need to understand that you will be spending the holidays with your family so as not to ruin your celebration with their attitude. Period.

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u/But_why_tho456 Partassipant [3] 24d ago

I like that Sara tried to fix it, and your parents' opinion is fine, but not in front of your children. THAT is what definitely makes them the AH. NTA. You didn't overreact at all.

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u/emi_lgr 24d ago

Yeah the doubling down in front of the kids was what made them AHs for me. I could understand if it’s a slip of the tongue; few people see stepchildren as grandchildren, but they usually at least have the courtesy of keeping that thought to themselves.

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u/Hanxa13 Partassipant [3] 24d ago

They aren't stepkids though. They are legally adopted.

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u/emi_lgr 24d ago

That doesn’t really matter when you’re the grandparents, who don’t have any choice in the matter. It’s like when stepkids don’t accept their parent’s new spouse as a real parent, you can’t force what you don’t feel. You don’t have to love the kids your kids love as grandchildren, biological or not, but as adults they should know better than to tell that to the kids themselves. That’s just cruel.

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u/Sea-Butterscotch383 Partassipant [2] 24d ago

NTA.

That was cruel and honestly horrible of your parents.

They’ve revealed to you what they always felt, you and your family are not “real.”

I feel so bad for your kids, but thank you so much for reiterating to them what they mean to you and that you love them.

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u/cookies_squeaky Partassipant [3] 24d ago Take My Energy

NTA! My inlaws were sort-of inclusive to my kids from my previous marriage until their son and I had a baby. They made it pretty obvious that they really only cared about "their real grandchild". I made it clear that if they couldn't treat all the kids equally then I couldn't host them at my home for events. Fair is fair, your folks are just reaping what they sow.

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u/AdmirableJudgement Colo-rectal Surgeon [34] 24d ago

NTA And their argument for your hosting Thanksgiving is that they don't want to "ruin" it for a baby. Her attitude is on the way to ruin Thanksgiving and a lot of other things for the three kids who grew up thinking they loved them as grandparents.

How anyone could double down on being so cruel to young children then insist that they were right is beyond belief. You might talk to your brother to tell him that he hasn't a clue about how it feels to see your children hurt by someone they thought loved them and you hope he never will.

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u/Rainbow0043 24d ago

NTA
You didn't react harshly at all, nor will it your absence ruin your niece's 1st Thanksgiving as she won't remember anything about anyway.
Stand your ground! If they don't see your family as family they really don't deserve to celebrate with you.

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u/arm2610 Partassipant [4] 24d ago

NTA. I have absolutely zero sympathy for people who are this hung up on genetics and “carrying on the bloodline”. What a cruel and self absorbed point of view they have.

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u/beigefrog 24d ago

Nta, but you can’t force them to see your children as their grandchildren.

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u/SlinkyMalinky20 Asshole Aficionado [16] 24d ago

No, but she surely can cancel Thanksgiving at her house so they can take their “blood family” to eat at Golden Corral.

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u/kimariesingsMD Asshole Enthusiast [8] 24d ago

How about she can expect them not to say such hurtful things in front of the kids who are already consider her their grandmother?

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u/charlybell 24d ago

This. They can have their feelings- they don’t need to inform the OP’s kids. It should have made it more clear and not let them use grandparent nicknames- would be a Dick move but at least set up a boundary right away and not when the bio grandchild arrived

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u/Strange-Courage 24d ago Silver

This is such a hard one for me because I 100% see it from both sides. While yes your kids are their grandchildren since you adopted them, this is their first actual blood grandchild so you have to understand that excitement. Were they wrong for saying it in-front of the other kids? yes yes yes yes, but their feelings are valid. I don’t blame you for wanting to not see them/ spend the holiday with them for how they handled it. NTA for shutting down the thanksgiving plans due to them hurting your kids feelings, it’s definitely something they could have kept to themselves or between your brother and them.

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u/Gytha0gg 24d ago

Hard disagree. Adopted / raised children are your children, period. DNA has nothing to do with it.

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u/Pharmacienne123 Asshole Aficionado [18] 24d ago

You are absolutely correct. As much as someone might love a child who is not related to them, biology matters to a lot of people. They want to see grandma‘s eyes or dad‘s attached earlobes or great grandpa‘s smile. Like most species, we have evolved to deeply value biology on both a conscious and subconscious level.

The grandparents should not have doubled down in front of the children, as that was extremely hurtful, but most people feel this way — at least deep down.

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u/Gevalty Asshole Enthusiast [8] 24d ago

NTA That was a cruel comment. And now they are doubling down.

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u/Deep_Statement3377 24d ago Take My Energy

Not going to be popular but NAH. You have every right to take those kids on as your own and view them as such but you shouldn't expect your whole family to have the same opinion and desires as you. I completely respect your stance, it's great you feel that way but that doesn't mean your parents HAVE to view the children the same way.

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u/rcburner 24d ago

Regardless of how they view or think about the kids, they're still the assholes for verbalizing those views in front of them.

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u/ProfPlumDidIt Pooperintendant [58] 24d ago

NTA and I'd respond to all of them that, until they accept your children as family, you will not host or attend family events. That what they said hurt your kids and made them feel unloved and unwanted and that is not, is NEVER, acceptable, so it's better for your kids to not be around people who feel the way they do.

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u/ScammerC Asshole Enthusiast [9] 24d ago

NTA. You adopted these children and your parents just rejected them to their faces. How do you come back from that? How do you make them sit through Christmas, watching the "real grandchild" get spoilt while they try to explain to the 8 year old how she's not really theirs anymore, she's been replaced, but she has to just understand where her ex-grandparents are coming from. Because that's what your parents basically said; Your family are props for their darling little girl's first thanksgiving!

And I'd make your brother say it. Say where he thinks your parents are coming from. Because there's nothing nice or kind behind those words. You might as well get it all out in the open, so Sara doesn't get the wrong idea about the cruel family she just married into.

I feel really bad for your kids. I don't know if I'd ever look at your parents the same way again. The casual cruelty is just breathtaking.

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u/TamagotchiGirlfriend 24d ago

You are absolutely NTA, and honestly, i wonder if some of this is homophobia on top of everything else. they're allowed to feel how they feel, but to say this in front of your children is inexcusable, and it's not at all wrong for you to respond to their feelings this way. Thanksgivings a shitty holiday, your children are more important.

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u/Lithogiraffe Partassipant [1] 24d ago

OP, would you have the same course of action, if they hadn't said it infront of all the kids?

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u/throwawayz_12345 24d ago

No, I think I would've just sat down with them and talked about it had it not been said in front of the kids. It would definitely hurt my feelings to know that they felt that way, but I'd want them to explain to me why they were okay with being Nana and Pop for 8 years if those have never been their grandkids in their eyes.

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u/absherlock 24d ago

Because they were playing the odds. On the chance you or your brother never had biological children, your kids were "good enough". Now that they have your neice, your kids are second-class citizens.

I'm a bitter person so I would cut ties except to remind them of all of the ways in which your kids are awesome and that they no longer have access to them. Every award, holiday, trophy, graduation, wedding, etc. they get nothing but a picture with "This could have been yours" scrawled across the front in Sharpie. But that's just me.

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u/fading__blue Pooperintendant [63] 24d ago

It would actually be a better idea not to update them about any achievements. Updating them means they get to act like loving grandparents in front of other people who know your family but not the situation. Not updating them means they get the awkward questions of “why didn’t you know?” and you get to tell people precisely why they aren’t involved.

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u/whiporee123 Partassipant [1] 24d ago Take My Energy Starry

NTA, because you don't have to invite anyone anywhere you don't want to. But ...

You adopted the kids. Your parents didn't. They didn't agree to assign a biological equality with any other biological grandchildren they might have. There is none of their blood running through your kids veins. And that's perfectly fine, but you're demanding they feel what they don't feel. But they aren't required to feel like you do about your kids.

And this isn't a situation where you adopted them as a couple -- you adopted her children, and you consider them your own. That's great. But there's not a transient property of emotions here -- because they are your parents you and you consider the kids your own, that does not does not mean they;'ll have the same emotions towards your kids that you do. And honestly, it's an unrealistic and unfair expectation.

They love them. They treat them well. Isn't that enough? Are you going to be mad if they get lesser inheritance? If your parents decide to pass down heirlooms along bloodline? Do you not concede they have the right to feel how they feel?

Again, NTA. Parents should have behaved better. But they're allowed to feel differently than you do. They didn't see your kids being born, or their first steps, or change their diapers or anything like that. They don't and won't have the same bond. And expecting them to -- expecting them to feel the same as you do -- is unrealistic. Probably should have kept it to themself, but even if they did, there's a good chance even then the differences would be apparent, and noticed.

Blended families are hard. Good luck.

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u/AmbulanceChaser12 Asshole Enthusiast [6] 24d ago

You adopted the kids. Your parents didn't. They didn't agree to assign a biological equality with any other biological grandchildren they might have. There is none of their blood running through your kids veins. And that's perfectly fine, but you're demanding they feel what they don't feel. But they aren't required to feel like you do about your kids.

Yes, OP's parents have the "right" to make this hairsplitting, cruel, assholish distinction. And OP has the right to respond with as much disrespect as it merits. Which is to say, "all the disrespect."

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u/ksthill80 24d ago edited 24d ago Silver Gold Wholesome Take My Energy Bravo! Ally I'll Drink to That

YTA - just because you’ve adopted or raised these kids doesn’t mean that someone else is required to feel the same way. I’m sure they’re great kids and you have a wonderful family but they also (presumably) have grandparents from their mother and father. You need to stop expecting others to feel the way that you do. It should be enough that they have been welcomed members of your parents family for 8 years - they are not required to view them as their grandchildren. Next you’ll be wanting them to inherit.

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u/uzuli 24d ago

yikes, way to basically tell everyone that you don't think adoptive families are real families.

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u/buddha318 24d ago edited 24d ago Wholesome

They can be a real family, without being a biological family. Also, the grandparents are allowed to be excited over thier first BIOLOGICAL grandchild.

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u/mekareami 24d ago

For the people who didn't actually sign the papers, they don't have to be considered as relatives imo. I am not leaving anything to the 2 'nieces' my brother inherited when their meth head mother and father (wifes brother) died. They got presents at xmas but they are not getting part of my estate

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u/Little-Martha31204 Partassipant [4] 24d ago

NTA. These kids have been in their lives for 8 years and view them as their grandparents. Then they had to sit there and listen to their entire existence in the family be denied. In a world with a lot more diverse family dynamics, your parents were in the wrong here.

I would give them a chance to educate themselves, and possibly ask you any questions they need to further inform their views. But, if their view remains that these children are not their grandchildren, I think you are completely justified to remove yourself from their "family" celebration.

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u/nothisTrophyWife Partassipant [3] 24d ago

Ohhhhhh, so your mother wants this to be about an infant? Who won’t know the difference? Yeah, no. Absolutely not. You’re NTA.

The oldest of my sister‘s grandkids is not biologically related, but she is OURS in every way that matters. She looks more like my sis than her biological grandkids even. When her mom joined our family, she was our baby.