This young Redditor turned to the community to air her frustrations after her parents asked her to pay them rent. She refused, saying she needed it for college, but they’re pressuring her to give in!
OP (Original Poster) is a 14-year-old and is her mom’s eldest child. She remarried OP’s current stepdad, and he has two daughters of his own; they also had a child together, a toddler who’s OP’s little half-brother.
Her biological dad also has an older daughter, who’s currently 19. OP mentioned that she was the person she trusted to manage her savings account and that she planned to move in with her when she turned 16, even if she lived in another state.
Issues With Her Dad
Though she trusted her older half-sister, OP could not say the same for her biological dad.
She said, “He’s playing Daddy with other people’s kids and doing drugs. I want no part of him in my life. The only person I have is my sister, who I love so much even though we only met a year ago.”
Summer Job, Salary, and Allocations
Then, OP started her story by mentioning that she would soon get a summer job. So, she and her parents, OP’s mom and stepdad, began discussing how she’d spend her money and where to allocate it.
She wrote, “For example, phone bill and school supplies and clothes just to be prepared.”
A Surprising Demand
However, OP didn’t expect her parents to ask her to give them half of her salary to “help with rent.”
OP looked at them and laughed, thinking they were only joking. But her parents told her they were serious and said she needed to learn to be “financially stable for when she’s older.”
Her Future Plans
OP said no and explained that she would attend fashion school, which was very expensive and time-consuming. Even so, she wanted to go because it was what she loved to do.
You’re Being Selfish
Instead of supporting her, OP’s parents told her she was being “selfish.” They then demanded that she “repay” them for everything they bought her when she was just a kid.
OP, still not believing it, asked them if they were being serious, and they said yes.
It Was Different in Our Time
OP’s parents explained that when they were OP’s age, they “helped their parents with bills and didn’t have any money left for themselves.”
She then replied, “I told them, ‘As adults, you shouldn’t want that for your child and want to be different than their parents.’ They yet again called me selfish.”
Why She’s Doing This
She then explained that her parents had told her that she would have to figure out college “on her own” because they “would not be responsible for her college funds.” They also told OP that they will “not be messing their credit score over her, only for her brother.”
This is a big issue for OP, as she mentioned, “My stepfather will be helping his kids but not me. He buys me clothes and stuff I want but won’t help me get my first car or help with my future. He has told my mom that I’m disrespectful and don’t deserve things like this since I don’t ‘behave.’”
How Would I Know?
OP also found it hard to believe that her parents were struggling financially. She said they wouldn’t tell her anything about the state of their finances, so her logic was, “Why pay half of their rent if I don’t know if they are struggling?”
OP shared that her mom works as a veterinarian and makes “good money,” while her stepdad works with her.
Trying to Find Someone to Back Her Up
Even though OP didn’t have a lot of people to turn to, she believes her grandparents would be on her side.
The problem was that if she told them about what her parents did, they would “bust her a**” for telling others about their business. After all, they believed in the saying, “What happens in this house stays in this house.”
Trying to Compromise
OP didn’t know much about credit scores, credit cards, debit cards, and more; even so, she refused to give them half of her salary. After all, she needed to plan for her future and the rest of the things she would need, like clothes, shoes, a sewing machine, and more.
She did, however, offer to give them a quarter of it. OP said, “I just don’t appreciate that they expect me to pay half and worry about college on my own.”
What Did I Do Wrong?
On the one hand, OP believes she did the right thing for herself. Conversely, some parts of her thought she had been disrespectful toward her parents.
She said, “I might be the a**hole because I’ve disrespected them for my selfish needs, but fashion school is really important to me, and they need to realize that.”
Redditors’ Two Cents
Redditors told OP that she didn’t have any responsibilities toward her parents; it was them who had to care for OP.
One user wrote, “They are legally required to care for you. They have you as a dependant. Once you start working, you need to do your own taxes. I agree with learning to be financially stable. I disagree with everything else your parents said. But hey, they are your parents, and you live with them under their roof. It’s also their rules, sadly, unless you can strike out on your own. This, to me, is rather baffling—that your parents expect you to pay back their responsibility to raise a child. What a deplorable way to gaslight their own child. Not the a**hole, and become independent as soon as possible.” Another noted, “I hate parents that openly and shamelessly just see kids as some kind of investment and insist that they’re somehow owed something for a choice they made to bring another human being into the world that had no say in having such s***** parents.”
It’s Their Responsibility!
No one seemed to be on OP’s parents’ side, as people flocked to the comments section to reiterate that it was their responsibility to raise OP. She didn’t owe them anything!
“Not the a**hole. It is their responsibility to provide you with housing. It doesn’t matter what it was like when they were young; their parents owed them the same things that you’re owed. Just because they were cheated and abused doesn’t mean that you deserve that,” said one Redditor. Another commented, “Lol, you’re 14? They legally have to provide for you till you are 18 if you are in the US. They can’t demand rent or anything from you till you’re 18. Now yeah, sometimes kids help the family out if on hard times. But your summer job money goes to things like your phone, car, insurance for the car, and clothing they choose not to buy you—games and so on. Your parents can’t demand you pay rent, food, or utilities. That’s all required for them to provide you with. Not the a**hole.”
What would you tell OP’s parents? How would you comfort OP?
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This post first appeared as She Refused to Give Her Parents Half of Her Salary to Pay Rent. She’s Only 14 and Saving for College, but They Call Her “Selfish,” Demanding She “Repay” Everything They Bought! on Quote Ambition.