A woman has asked for readers’ opinions after enduring a fight with her current husband over inappropriate comments he made to her children—while at her ex-husband’s (and their father’s) funeral.
The 36-year-old woman, known only as u/Throwaway53563, shared her experience in Reddit’s “Am I the A**hole” forum on Tuesday. The post has so far amassed over 11,000 upvotes and 1,900 comments, sparking intense discussion among readers.
u/Throwaway53563 started her post by explaining that her ex-husband, 43, passed away three weeks ago due to a long battle with cancer. He and u/Throwaway53563 were parents to two children together: a 12-year-old boy and a 9-year-old girl.
“[Their] mental and physical health is my one top priority, and I want them to grieve their dad properly,” said u/Throwaway53563.
Her current husband reportedly “saw no need for the kids to attend the funeral.” Regardless, u/Throwaway53563 insisted that the children would be present.
“My husband drove us to the funeral and kept making comments to the kids telling them how to behave which was uncalled for,” she wrote.
The stepdad’s strange behavior continued at the event. Explained u/Throwaway53563: “I was standing from a distance but could hear the kids crying … I then started hearing my husband telling them to quiet down repeatedly.”
He then reportedly said, according to the Reddit post: “Stop crying, really there’s no need for this….it’s not like he can hear you.”
“I was stunned,” recalled u/Throwaway53563. Meanwhile, the husband maintained that he was “just trying to comfort the kids and help them get [ahold] of their emotions.”
“I told him what he said was horrible and everyone heard it,”u/Throwaway53563 said. “He tried to argue that he was just trying to help but I … demanded that he [leave] the funeral.” In response, “he threw a fit and said [she] was overreacting.”
“I insisted then he left later,” u/Throwaway53563 said.
When u/Throwaway53563 arrived home, she found her husband angry. “He picked an argument saying I shouldn’t have kicked him out of the funeral after he came to support me and the kids,” she said.
u/Throwaway53563 concluded by noting that her current husband “never had a good relationship” with her kids’ dad.
As a general rule of thumb, experts advise stepparents to be extra cautious when speaking of their stepchild’s other parent. As parenting expert Derek Randel explained to Parents magazine: “These children are not yours.”
“No matter what the biological ex-spouse has done, respect the child’s need to love that parent,” he added.
Readers were quick to express shock and concern over the behavior of u/Throwaway53563’s husband.
“Your kids are not too young to forget this now. Their relationship with their step dad will be tainted forever. I would venture to say it’s pretty much over,” wrote u/Jsm1370 in a top-voted comment. “Your husband knew exactly what he was doing. He was trying to minimize their [dad’s] death.”
“He was completely out of line and it sounds like he was making a show of being supportive while resenting your children for grieving for their father,” echoed u/Mysterious-System680.
Some, however, also took issue with u/Throwaway53563 for not addressing her husband’s behavior sooner. Said u/shewolf8686: “There is no excuse for you to have let this go as far as it did.”
Newsweek has reached out to u/Throwaway53563 for additional information.