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Grieving Mom Looks For Advice After Family Accuse Her Of Making ‘A Scene’ At Son’s Funeral By Confronting Sister-In-Law

Photo: Antonio Guillem / Shutterstock
woman crying in front of man

A woman has posted to the subreddit 'AITA' (Am I The A**Hole) asking if she's in the wrong for fighting with her sister-in-law at her son's funeral.

The woman, 45, started her story by saying that her son, Charlie, 17, had passed away last week after battling lymphoma for five years.

"Everyone in my family was devastated, and it hurts having to bury your child," the woman wrote in her Reddit post.

The woman prefaced her situation by explaining that her son had a pretty good life, despite being sick, especially the last couple of years that he'd been alive.

He was extremely well-liked among his friends, he was happy, confident, and had a strong group of friends and a girlfriend who was really sweet.

"One thing that’s important about this story is he would always dress like he had a job interview (dress shirt, necktie, dress pants, belt, dress shoes, occasional sport jacket, vest, or sweater), but he would always wear bright and vibrant colors on the top. He also wore glasses and had ginger hair," the mother explained.

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The family was hosting a visitation for her late-son, and all of his friends decided to honor Charlie by dressing like him. They all wore colorful shirts with ties, with a sport jacket and khaki or gray pants.

Some of his friends also wore fake glasses, and even dyed their hair red, also managing to get Charlie's little brother, Adam, to join in as well.

"I honestly thought this was one of the sweetest things ever, and it really helped cheer me up while I was grieving Charlie being gone," the mother recalled.

Charlie had also been close to their family dog, and so Adam convinced them to bring the dog along to the visitation as well, which the mother found very sweet.

"Our dog is quiet and cooperative so I didn’t see any problem bringing him."

Most of their family and friends thought that what Charlie's friends had done was extremely endearing, and a nice way to remember him.

However, the woman's sister-in-law did not think it was a sweet gesture.

"My [sister-in-law] told Adam as well as Charlie’s friends that the way they were dressing was inappropriate for a funeral and funeral visitation," the woman wrote. 

"She mentioned that those boys should have all been wearing black and that she’s shocked that their parents even allowed this in the first place."

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The woman's sister-in-law also made condescending comments about how many of Charlie's friends had dyed their hair to match his as well.

The woman overheard her sister-in-law making the remarks and told her to leave them alone, and that this was their way of remembering their friend. 

"She has no place to say what is and isn’t appropriate at a funeral, and that the way she was acting was inappropriate. My [sister-in-law] left shortly afterwards without my brother."

The sister-in-law was still mad about the fight, and didn't show up for the funeral or the burial service despite originally planning to.

The woman's husband and Adam agreed that the sister-in-law was being extremely rude and inappropriate, but that the woman shouldn't have argued with her because it only caused things to escalate, but that they appreciated her defending them.

"I know that I did cause a scene at Charlie’s visitation yesterday, but I believe I should be defending people who are properly remembering my son."

Many people under the Reddit thread were in agreement that the mother was NTA (Not The A**Hole).

"It sounds like a lovely service, please don’t let your [sister-in-law] ruin the good memories. My heart goes out to you and your family," one user commented.

Another user commented, "Your son's friends made an extremely touching final gesture, and she had no right to judge or disrespect that. She was the one who started drama by voicing her opinion about the boys." 

"You just shut it down by reminding her the funeral was not about her. You didn't say any more than needed to be said, and her behavior was clearly out of line and inappropriate."

Sounds like most of Reddit agrees that no one should tell a grieving person how to mourn their loved ones.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.