Thousands of commenters have questioned a woman’s parenting abilities after her sister revealed she left her 5-year-old stepson home alone for hours while embarking on an unexplained escapade.
In a Reddit post titled “AITA for refusing to look at my sister’s stepson and exposing her lies to her husband?”, Redditor u/RoomNum99 recounted an intense confrontation with her sister and detailed the consequences of her decision. not to babysit. Posted on Reddit’s popular hole r/AmITheA**, the viral post received more than 17,200 upvotes and 2,100 comments.
Beginning the original post with an explanation of family dynamics, u/RoomNum99 said that every Monday morning, her 30-year-old sister asks her mother to watch her 5-year-old stepson for a few hours. Explaining that she had begun to recognize her sister’s Monday morning routine, the Redditor added that this week their mother was unable to watch the 5-year-old, leaving u/RoomNum99 as the last available option. .
“Yesterday at 9 a.m. my sister called me asking me to come and babysit her stepson for a few hours because she had an important thing to do,” she explained. “I said no because I had to go to study and also she does every Monday so clearly it wasn’t important or urgent… I told her sorry but no.”
Hours later, u/RoomNum99 said he received a call from his brother-in-law, wondering where his sister was, as he had just returned home to find his 5-year-old son completely alone.
“He told me he just got home at 1 p.m. and found his son alone at home,” she explained. “I was in shock that my sister left her stepson all alone so she could go god knows where.”
Although no federal law determines how old a child must be to be left home alone, some state laws do. According to data compiled by Latchkey-Kids, Maryland, New Mexico, North Carolina and Oregon all have laws that determine the minimum age at which children can be left home alone: 8 years old in the Maryland and North Carolina; 10 years in Oregon and 11 years in New Mexico.
Other states do not have minimum age laws but have issued recommendations for parents about when they should first leave their children home alone, including Colorado (12), Delaware (12), Illinois (14), Michigan (11), Tennessee (10) and Washington (10). However, 5 years old is younger than any known state recommendation and is widely considered far too young for a child to be left at home.
Following the phone call with her brother-in-law, u/NumRoom99 said her sister confronted her about her refusal to babysit and accused her of creating a rift in her marriage.
“In the evening, my sister came over and started making a scene yelling at me for abandoning her after she texted me saying she had already left the house for me. force him to come see his stepson,” she wrote. “She said I did it deliberately and also exposed her to her husband because she told him she would be home with the child.”
“Not only that, but I also told her husband that mum was coming every Monday morning to babysit for a few hours, which caused a huge fight between him and my sister,” she added. .
Although a 2017 YouGov survey found that 14% of people have lied to their partner once, 49% said they have lied to their partner multiple times. The Redditor’s sister, who hadn’t told her husband to leave her stepson with his mother every Monday, was caught in the middle of multiple lies herself.
In the lead comment to the post, which received nearly 17,000 votes, Redditor u/64TY speculated that the original poster’s sister was either having an affair or a drug addiction. Other Redditors focused on his willingness to leave a 5-year-old home alone.
Redditor u/justobsolete assured that the original poster wasn’t wrong for refusing to babysit, and ripped at her sister’s behavior.
“[Not the a**hole]. A 30-year-old man doesn’t need this pampering. She left a 5 year old alone who knows how long to get into who knows what trouble,” they wrote. “5 year old needs some pampering. Not the grown woman who made the conscious, conscious decision to marry a man with a young son.”
In a series of fiery responses, many commenters lambasted the original poster’s sister for leaving such a young child home alone, and continued to question her mysterious Monday mornings. Editors u/tenkindsofsalt and u/poppurplepuff, echoing that the original poster did nothing wrong, commented on his sister’s dishonesty and said they hoped any further lies would end up being revealed.
“I don’t think going out one morning a week is a problem,” u/tenkindsofsalt wrote. “But lying to your husband about it and forcing your loved ones to cover it up? No, sir.”
“I hope her husband asks her about what exactly she does and where she goes when she is supposed to watch the child,” u/poppurplepuff added. “It’s sketchy [as f**k].”