Woman tells Reddit of family row over refusal to care for obese brother

Woman tells Reddit of family row over refusal to care for obese brother

A woman has taken to Reddit to vent about how her parents expect her to take on the care of her obese brother.

She said that her brother’s difficult birth led to him receiving special treatment from their parents, which apparently became so stark that she moved out of the family home at 15.

Now, her parents want him to move in with her family, but she refused.

Posting to the Am I The A**hole subreddit to seek second opinions, the 35-year-old explained that when her brother was born, the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck and he stopped breathing for at least three minutes.

Her parents often allegedly overlooked the 26-year-old’s behaviour and the Redditor said: “My childhood became a living hell.”

She said her parents would often bring up the fact he “died coming into this world” or “almost didn’t have a birthday” to get her to let him open her birthday presents, give him her candy, or let him play with her friends.

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She said she was punished if she ever did anything to him, whereas he “got away with whatever he did”.

At 15, she moved out to live with other family members. Even today, her contact with her parents and her brother is limited.

At 18, her brother decided to become a “competitive eater”, but this “turned into just eating”, leading to her brother ballooning to almost 600 pounds.

Due to his weight, he is unemployed and requires care. She said her parents “hardly leave the house”.

After her brother ended up in the hospital after suffering a fall, her parents complained that the hospital wasn’t feeding him enough and that his wheelchair was too small.

Her parents then approached the Redditor and asked her and her husband for a “large amount of money” to go towards his care as they were forced to dip into their retirement funds to pay for his care.

Her parents also suggested that once discharged, their son should live with the Redditor and her husband as they have a bigger house and because they want a break.

She told them no as they work full-time and their children have busy schedules.

Apparently then she was hit with one of the old guilt trips: “He’s your brother! You almost didn’t have a brother”.

After this, they left the hospital.

She explained: “My mom later called me, berating me [for] abandoning the family and demanding money. I told her I would not care for my brother under any circumstances. Even if something happened to her and my dad, I would not care for my brother and he’s her problem. Not mine.

“My mom cursed me out over the phone and hung up.”

She added: “I do feel a little bad ‘cause he is my brother but he made my life hell and my parents refuse to take any responsibility for his behavior.”

The comment section was overwhelmingly on the Redditor’s side. The top comment, with over 15,000 upvotes, accused the parents of “enabling” their son to reach the weight he’s currently at and added: “They need serious family therapy to see how their behavior is leading to the death of their son. They can’t just help him get close to death then pawn the problem off on someone else.”

Another Redditor wrote: “I feel bad for you and him. You were both failed by your parents.”

“I feel so badly for your brother because they raised him to be like this,” another comment reads. “But at some point, he has to take responsibility. That responsibility, however, is not yours.”

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