So you know about the famous r/AmItheAsshole subreddit.
If not, it’s a place for people to come and get opinions about their behavior in certain situations.
I recently came across one post where someone offered their parents their converted garage and said they could move into a nursing home if they didn’t like it. As you can imagine, the post generated strong reactions from readers, but it’s more complex than it sounds. Check it out and judge for yourself what happened:
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"I don't drive, and I live in my forever house with my dogs. My kids are grown up and I'm a widow. I converted my garage into a legal guesthouse with everything a person needs for when the kids visit: independent washroom, kitchen, everything," they began.
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"My parents have recently asked me if they can move in with me. I agreed and talked to my kids to let them know that if they came for a visit, the garage was taken, so they would have to stay in the house. My parents showed up on the appointed day, and the kids showed up with their families to help get them moved in. And they actually had already arranged a hotel for one family so we would not be crowded. My parents were confused as to why we were moving their stuff into the garage. I told them that was where they were staying," they continued.
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"They said that they thought they could move into my house, since I have five bedrooms. I explained that I actually have two bedrooms, since one room is my office, where I see clients, one is my private office, and one is my hobby room. The spare bedroom is mostly for my mutts. They said that they wanted to live in the house, not out in the garage like Fonzie. I said it was a take-it-or-leave-it situation. If they didn't want the garage, they could move into a nursing home or something. They are upset that they are living RENT-FREE in a private guesthouse that is fully up to code."
People had a lottttt of different thoughts on the situation. Some readers said no, NTA (not the A-hole). Some said definitely, YTA (you’re the A-hole). Others voted ESH (everyone sucks here), and few said NAH (no A-hole here).
For the most part, readers seemed to side with the original poster.
“Wow, your parents are spoiled. A rent-free, up-to-code apartment sounds pretty sweet. If it isn’t good enough for them, then they can make other arrangements. But if you let them into your main house, it will become their house. And you won’t be able to get away from them. NTA.”
“NTA. If it’s a converted guesthouse that’s completely up to code, I don’t see a reason that they would want to go into the house, as everything you have in the house, you have in the guesthouse, too. My friend recently turned her shed into a beautiful guesthouse, with kitchen appliances, a private bathroom, the works. Her parents are currently living there, and they don’t have a problem with it. They like the privacy, and they like being close to their child.”
“They wanted into the main house for you to be their cook, maid, and carer. In the guesthouse, they have to fend for themselves.”
Others faulted both of them.
“ESH for not clarifying all this information before moving.”
“Why would they not know this before they showed up with their stuff? ESH.”
“When someone asks if they can move in with you, they are asking to live WITH you, not adjacent to you. They were expecting to be cared for, most likely, which is normal in a lot of cultures — maybe it is in yours or maybe not. Regardless, communication matters. Somehow you told the kids more than the people moving in.”
Some said they were absolutely the one in the wrong.
“I guess I’m going against the grain, but YTA. Maybe it’s because I love my parents with all my heart, and in the culture I grew up in, you take care of the elders. But I can understand how your parents thought they would be living inside your house with you, and especially when you live by yourself and have five bedrooms, that they would get one. It’s also understandable that they might feel like outsiders. I would give anything to my parents, and it’s not only about moving in with you rent-free. You’re making them look like moochers. It’s about spending the rest of their time on this planet with their daughter, creating memories and everything.”
“YTA. Not for the offer but for a complete and utter failure to communicate. And now you’re threatening them about moving to a nursing home because you don’t understand that they need some time to get over the surprise?”
“YTA. I get it. It’s your house. FIVE bedrooms, and your PARENTS can’t have one? Why don’t you make the garage space your client meeting space?”
But then people also defended them and the parents.
“NAH here; OP gave them a perfectly reasonable option, but OP should have been more clear about what was and wasn’t being offered.”
Note: Some submissions have been lightly edited for length and/or clarity.