In a tight-knit family grappling with shifting dynamics, the Original Poster (OP) finds herself at the center of family drama. As the sole breadwinner, she’s confronted with the looming responsibility of supporting not only her lifestyle but her family’s whims and desires. With promises of greater independence on the horizon, can she navigate the weight of past traumas and the allure of a potentially brighter future?
A Cramped Living Space
OP, a 20-year-old female, lives with her mother, stepfather, and younger brother in a disliked apartment in a small town. Her brother is on the brink of leaving for the army after high school graduation.
The Moving Proposition
OP’s parents are planning a move that is two hours away in the mountains. Her parents’ proposal is for OP to cover half the rent of the new place. They intend to journey back and forth every month, mostly for medical appointments and during winter.
The Lone Breadwinner
Currently, OP is the only working member in the family, employed as a server/cook in a local restaurant. Her stepfather receives disability and social security benefits, and her mother gets child support. Despite this, she faces financial pressures.
In their new plan, her parents expect her to bear all the moving costs. Moreover, she is entrusted with the care of two large and very active dogs during their frequent absences. The responsibilities pile up.
Fractured Ties with Mother
OP’s reluctance to move stems from her tense relationship with her mother. Accusations of manipulation abound, and the stress between them is palpable. This strained relationship adds to OP’s apprehensions.
Under Critical Eyes
Her mother consistently critiques her weight, resulting in OP developing an eating disorder. The battle with this disorder remains a challenging part of OP’s life. Yet, her mother’s criticisms don’t end there.
Attempts to spend time with friends, even occasionally, are met with disapproval from her mother. Her involvement in hobbies, like playing Dungeons and Dragons, also doesn’t escape her mother’s critique. These constant criticisms amplify the strain between them.
Despite the responsibilities thrust upon her, OP feels that she isn’t treated or seen as an adult by her parents. Their actions seem inconsistent with her perceived status in the family. This dissonance deepens her frustrations.
Growing Fears and Concerns
OP fears that moving with them will magnify her obligations. Not just in terms of rent and utilities but possibly supporting her mother’s vices. The looming threat to her mental health weighs heavily on her.
The Lure of Independence
Amid these challenges, OP’s parents entice her with the promise of greater independence with the new arrangement. This offers hope and a potential reprieve from her current situation. However, skepticism remains.
Financial Strings Attached
The commitment to paying half the rent of the new apartment hangs over OP’s head. This, coupled with the prospect of funding the move entirely, poses significant financial strains. The responsibility seems disproportionate.
Two Dogs and a Lonely Home
The dogs, though possibly beloved, represent another layer of responsibility. Their care, especially in the absence of her parents, falls squarely on OP. This adds to her growing list of commitments.
The Struggle Within
Internally, OP grapples with her emotions, duties, and the treatment she receives from her parents. She battles feelings of obligation against her own well-being. This inner conflict is constant and consuming.
The Weight of the Past
Previous experiences, especially those involving her mother’s critiques and her resultant eating disorder, cloud OP’s judgment. These past traumas influence her decisions and feelings about the proposed move.
Beyond the immediate challenges, OP’s desire for autonomy and recognition stands out. She longs to be seen and treated as an independent adult. This quest for self-determination is central to her struggles.
Was The Girl’s Behavior Appropriate?
OP posts her story online for feedback and understanding from the internet community. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.
One reader said, “You ARE an adult just as much as your 18-year-old brother is. If they want to move, that’s on them, but you are not obligated to fund their lifestyle or play kennel to their pets.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “You have all the independence you choose to. Move out. They’re using you for financial security and a dog sitter while they do as they please.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “Their plan makes no sense in the long run anyway. Never ruin your future for someone else’s lack of plans.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “You’re allowed to live your own life. They made a plan that sounds like they would live off you until they die.”