Her father had estranged her grandmother for more than half of her life. Now that her grandma’s dead, her dad wants the inheritance she and her brother received because it’s “his birthright!”
What the Will Dictates
OP’s (Original Poster) 27, and when her grandmother died, she left her estate to OP, her uncles, and her 23-year-old brother. Her 60-year-old dad, on the other hand, had alienated her grandma for the last 15 years of her life, so he received nothing.
So, because OP and her brother maintained a relationship with their grandmother, it was explicitly stated in OP’s grandma’s will that the part of her estate that was supposed to go to OP’s father would be divided equally into two and would go to OP and her brother.
An Entitled Son’s Claims
However, OP’s parents have been extremely adamant that the inheritance was theirs, saying that her father should have never been written out of the will because the money was his “birthright.”
OP added, “My mom has told me that this money is the only thing that will give my dad his dignity back so that he is of equal value to his two brothers who received money. My grandmother wronged them, and from their perspective, she did this to get back at them.”
OP has talked to her uncles and the estate lawyers for the past two years as everything has unfolded. For OP, her father didn’t deserve the entirety of the inheritance she received.
For one, she maintained a relationship with her grandma until the last day of her life and even visited her in palliative care, whereas her father did not. Her dad only sent a text message to her grandma through OP’s phone during her last week.
Away From Their Relatives
Apart from this, OP’s parents cut her off from the rest of her extended family—-both paternal and maternal—for reasons she doesn’t completely understand since she was extremely young when it happened. They told her about what happened but only gave her a surface-level explanation.
She added, “They say it was because the family judged them beyond reasons that were irreparable.”
Manipulative Mom and Dad
Despite everything, OP spoke to her parents about her wanting to give them a cut while keeping some for her future and some to help pay off her student loans. However, instead of being grateful for the offer, they told her she “wasn’t poor enough” for the money and didn’t even eat Kraft dinner every night.
They also reasoned that she has a full-time job and her level of financial stress is incongruent with her spending habits. She was also accused of having trouble seeing things from a different perspective, saying that if she understood why her father needed the money to retain his dignity, then she wouldn’t be fighting this.
Money’s a Threat to Their Relationship
Additionally, OP’s parents told her that they are in desperate need of money. Her dad is unemployed, and her mom only has her pension for both of them.
OP wrote, “I am worried my dad will cut me out if I don’t give him my entire share of the estate. My brother is so scared of losing my parents that he’s just decided to give them the entirety of his share.”
Does She Really Owe Them Something?
OP is trying to stand her ground. She loves her parents, but she wants them to have some accountability for everything that has happened and that her maintaining a relationship with her grandma meant something.
She added, “They are adamant that money is theirs, and I’m only being given it because they allowed me to ‘have a relationship with her and didn’t cut me off from her.’”
Her Conflicted and Confused Mind
OP feels guilty that she will not be maintaining her grandmother’s wishes. Still, she also doesn’t want to lose the only family she has left.
She added, “I am worried I am the a**hole because I am not willing to help my father repair his dignity by giving them all the money. Additionally, I feel like the a**hole because they seem to need the money more than I do, and I should just hand it over rather than continue to fight this as my brother has done. I am being selfish by putting myself first and not my family.”
His Dignity Is in Her Hands
Eventually, OP got into an argument with her mother on the phone for over two hours, where she was told that her grandma was manipulative her whole life and that even beyond the grave, she was still manipulating them by writing her father out of the will.
OP noted, “If I don’t give them the entirety of the money, I’m basically telling my father that I don’t trust his feelings and that he isn’t entitled to his feelings. They are equating that my being the inheritor of the estate means I have power over them, and choosing to keep some of the money indicates I ‘don’t care about my father’s dignity.’”
No Longer Deserving of Their Trust
What’s more disturbing is that during the phone call, OP even asked her mother if they would still cut her out if she kept one-fourth of the money, which her mom confirmed by telling OP that their trust in her would be “lost.”
What Redditors Have to Say
Redditors could not believe OP’s parents and how they were so entitled and greedy that they were willing to risk losing their children over money.
A commenter wrote, “Not the a**hole. It’s not your dad’s birthright. Your grandmother decided who she wanted her estate to go to, and it wasn’t him. Stand your ground, don’t let his greed change your mind.”
Another person said, “Not the a**hole. It’s your money now. Your grandmother left it to you, not your parents. Do not let them tell you otherwise. Also, you are old enough to search and find the rest of your family. Do it. And find out why they cut your parents out. I would risk losing my parents to find a better family. They’re in hard times because your father doesn’t want to work. That’s not on you.”
He Should Be Held Accountable!
Some people also pointed out that OP’s father should’ve been a good son to her grandmother.
Aside from that, her parents also should’ve been honest with her.
“Not the a**hole. He can’t have it both ways. His pride got in the way of seeing his mother in her last days. If he sent her a text, he could’ve visited her. How dare he lecture about filial responsibility when he shirked his. He hasn’t even given you the whole story yet about the rift. Unfortunately, they’re forcing you to buy your parents’ love,” someone said.
The community also said that since it’s her grandmother’s money, she has every right to decide whom she can give it to.
A Redditor wrote, “Not the a**hole. Grandma can cut off anybody she deems unfit. Grandma’s money, Grandma’s decision. Sorry, but you can’t buy dignity. That’s just bulls***. Grandma died with an estranged son. Son needs to live with it and not rob his children.”
No Way Are You in the Wrong!
Some people question what kind of logic OP’s parents have for them to reason that the money is what will bring back her father’s dignity. They also suggested that OP talk to her uncles to ask what happened in their family.
A commenter said, “An inheritance is a gift and should never be expected. Why would money restore his dignity? The fact that your grandmother gave the share of the estate to you and your brother means she knew what she was doing.”
The same person added, “I would talk to your uncles about what caused the estrangement if you can. I would advise your brother not to give up his inheritance, either. Not the a**hole. You may have to go no contact with your family of origin. You do not owe them anything.”
They’re the Problem, Not You!
Redditors think that OP’s parents are the problem since they’re not in contact with their families and support OP in not giving in.
“Not the a**hole. Your dad sounds entitled. I can understand your parents cutting off contact with one side of the family over issues either party cannot resolve, but when it’s both sides, and they’ve isolated you from either side of your extended family, then your parents are the problem,” a commenter said.
The same Redditor added, “Your parents are bullying you into taking care of your dad’s ego so he can be at the ‘same level’ as your uncles, but he didn’t get the money because, for whatever reason, he did not deserve it. Don’t give in to them and stand your ground.”
What do you think OP should do? Should she give in to what her parents want?
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This post first appeared as She Refused to Renounce the Inheritance She Received From Her Grandmother, but Her Dad’s Threatening to Disown Her, Insisting It’s His “Birthright” and It’ll Restore His “Dignity!” Was She Selfish? on Quote Ambition.