Experiencing infertility and undergoing exhausting hormonal treatments in hopes of conceiving can put even the most even-keeled of people in a dark or unhealthy headspace. Struggling with fertility can be even more difficult when it seems like everyone around you is having kids left and right. One single mother, who has two adopted children and is currently 25 weeks pregnant, faced the brunt of this frustration when her sister yelled at her for “carelessly” getting pregnant when she and her husband have been trying to conceive for eight years.
She took to Reddit’s popular AITA subreddit to see if she was in the wrong for saying she is sympathetic towards her sister’s struggles, but ultimately “her baggage/trauma isn’t really my issue.”
The OP (28F) has been a mom since she was 22. She fostered her first child, a daughter, when the bio mom was having a difficult time. She ultimately became the child’s official guardian, and when the bio mom had a second child two years later, a son, she requested that he be placed with OP, too. She took him in as well.
“I didn’t plan on having any other children, but I met someone (it didn’t last) and long story short is that I have a first grader, a toddler, and I’m 25wks,” explained the OP.
Her sister, Bri (34), had always loved hanging out with OP’s kids. The OP also noted that her sister has been struggling with infertility for nearly a decade, and she can “tell how badly she wants to be a mom.” OP then goes on to say how she truly wishes the best for her sister and how Bri’s demeanor changed when OP announced that she was pregnant.
“Our mom invited us all to dinner the other night, so I got my kiddos settled with a sitter and drove to my mom’s place. Dinner went mostly fine but Bri kept giving me looks every time someone brought up the pregnancy and towards the end of the night she asked why I even adopted two children if I clearly had no trouble making a baby of my own,” the OP explained. Shots. Fired.
“I told her that when I started fostering my oldest, it was just to give her a safe place to live until her mom could get things sorted. Unfortunately that didn’t happen, and now her brother is with me too. I love my children and I’m happy to be their mom, but it wasn’t my intention in the beginning to adopt via foster care. I wanted their bio mom to work things out, and my heart genuinely hurts for her because she wasn’t able to do that.”
OP’s sister took it a step further and said “it feels like I’m rubbing my kids in her face.”
“She told me that it isn’t fair that I basically ‘had two kids fall into my lap’ and then ‘decided to be reckless and get knocked up too’ all while she’s been trying for years to have a child with no luck. She said it’s cruel and unfair that I ‘took’ two babies from the system that could’ve gone to parents who deserved them, all while being able to easily have one on my own.”
There’s a lot to unpack here, which OP realized and addressed with her older sister. “I ended up telling her that while it sucks, it’s not my fault that some people want kids and can’t have them and that her infertility baggage isn’t really my issue.”
The comment was apparently enough to make OP’s mom ask her to leave dinner. The day after, OP’s mom, “called me to tell me that I was being unnecessarily cruel to my sister when I know what she’s been going through,” which made her second-guess if she was being too tough on her sister experiencing fertility issues.
If you are confused as to how OP is in the wrong for *checks notes* existing and being pregnant, you’re not alone. While a difficult situation, OP is in the right, at least according to those commenting on her thread.
“Why haven’t you adopted ANY children, since you clearly have trouble making a baby of your own?” clapped back one user to the sister’s snide remarks. “I mean — that would be unnecessarily harsh, but I have zero sympathy for people who act like the universe owes them a biological child.”
“Seriously, if she’s complaining that OP ‘took’ 2 kids from the system, has she Googled how many foster kids in her state are STILL in the system and need homes? Some will return to their parents but others are wards of the state. If she wants to adopt so badly, a lack of available foster kids isn’t stopping her. NTA,” added another.
Others noted that the way the sister talked about children, as if they were a product you could hoard, felt like a red flag. “Something tells me that she’s obsessed with the idea of a baby and not actually with providing a safe home to children and the fact that she’s weaponizing OP’s children against her is fucking gross,” noted one top comment.
Here’s where it gets wilder. Three days after the original post, OP shared an update on the situation. Ultimately she has decided to “rinse my hands of the situation.”
“So my mom was supposed to go to my anatomy scan with me yesterday, but she called me and told me that because Bri is still upset to the point of not speaking to me, she didn’t want to make it any worse by going to the appointment,” she explained. Her mom texted her after the appointment to see how it went, but OP didn’t feel like engaging (understandably so!).
She also reached out to her sister’s husband (because her sister blocked her), “telling them both that I hope things work out for them in all the ways they deserve, and that I am genuinely sorry if I hurt her. I recommended talking to a therapist or support group of some kind, and said that when Bri has worked through all of the things she still needs to work through, she’s more than welcome to call me.”
Luckily, after OP told her dad about the whole ordeal, he offered to stay with her after the baby is born, which is something her mother originally planned to do.
“I’m not gonna focus too much on Bri and my mom right now, my kiddos are my priority and I think what’s best is to keep them away from the drama, so I don’t plan on allowing Bri or my mom around for a while,” she concluded before thanking everyone for reassuring her that she was not a monster for setting boundaries and gently calling her sister out for projecting her own issues and anxieties onto her.
Before you go, check out the mental health apps we swear by for giving our brains a little extra TLC: