Is it wrong to offer to help out someone else’s family with finances?
Or is it rude and uncalled for?
Hmmm…that’s a tough one…
Check out this story and see if you think this woman stepped over the line by offering to pay to send her niece to boarding school.
AITA for offering to pay to send my niece to boarding school?
“I have a daughter, Luisa (10), and my brother Charlie has a daughter, Sophie (11) (same school year). The girls have always been close, even though we moved abroad 3 years ago, so we have had Sophie come and stay with us during school holidays very often, and the girls keep in touch over social media.
Some context to this is that my brother and I come from a middle class family, both of us attended private schools, regular abroad holidays as children, “expensive” hobbies, etc. Charlie’s wife Rebecca does not come from a similar background and this has caused some awkward moments in the past, nothing malicious, just faux pas’s. Charlie also chose a career path which has meant that he has not been able to maintain the standard of living we grew up with, or provide that for Sophie. This has been a point of contention between him and his parents.
Next September, Luisa will be going to boarding school (before I get bashed in the comments, this was entirely her idea, not something we wanted for her, but it is where most of her friends from her junior school will be going, and they do not allow day pupils. The school is 1 hour from where we live and Luisa will be able to come home on weekends).
I gather that Luisa and Sophie spoke about the idea of going to school together and got very excited. I told Luisa this is something that Charlie and Rebecca would have to decide, and then spoke to Charlie about it. I said that if it was something he wanted for Sophie, me and my husband could pay for Sophie to go, and be her point of contact during term time.
Charlie was almost in tears thanking me, and said this is something he and Rebecca could only dream of for Sophie. Over the next couple of days, I spoke to our parents about this, as when I called I found out that he had already mentioned it, and they were overjoyed.
Yesterday, I got a series of vitriolic messages from Rebecca, accusing me of trying to ‘steal’ and ‘adopt her daughter’. She accused me and our whole family of using money to manipulate her daughter into hating her. She called me every name under the sun and said that I was trying to push her out of being a mother to Sophie.
None of this made any sense to me, I love Sophie dearly but I’ve never tried to be her mother, and this idea was Sophie and Luisa’s. I was very hurt by the things she implied about me and my family and didn’t even reply to her, but I did forward the messages to Charlie.
I didn’t think I had any part to play in Rebecca’s outburst, but I spoke to my husband about this and he said he sees how Rebecca could be upset, because when Sophie is around it’s obvious how much she looks up to me and wishes she had what Luisa does.
He also said that while he loves that my family wants the best for all of us, he could see how it could feel a bit oppressive if you couldn’t meet the standard.
My husband NEVER says things like this, so since that conversation I’ve been wondering, AITA?”
Now let’s see what Reddit users had to say.
This reader said they can’t understand how anyone could think this woman is an a**hole.
Another reader said this should have been discussed with two parents.
And this Reddit user said they feel bad for the SIL and it sounds like the woman who wrote the post is being a little bit unfair.
What do you think?
Let us know in the comments.
We look forward to it!