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Woman Excludes Nephew From Family Meals Because He Eats Junk Food, Sparking Debate

Photo: Drazen Zigic / spixel / Shutterstock
Family having a meal, sad boy

One woman doesn’t want to include her 9-year-old nephew in their family events because he only eats junk food.

The kid’s father shared a post on Reddit’s “r/AmItheA--hole” thread about his son’s condition.

The reason his son can only eat processed junk food is because of an eating disorder.

He has ARFID (Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder) which occurs in children who are picky eaters or have little interest in eating.

“He ate one sour grape seven years ago and still cries at the thought of eating another — it's bad,” he wrote.

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Additionally, eating in huge groups also upset him so the parents decided to stop making him eat in public, however, that started to change.

As a way to boost the boy’s confidence, the man thought it would be good to start having meals with their family.

His sister-in-law was organizing the upcoming family event so she initially agreed to let him come.

“My wife told her we'd bring his food up so he could eat comfortably. My sister-in-law then backtracked, saying that wasn't going to be feasible,” the man explained.

The woman thought it would be unfair for the other kids if her nephew ate junk food while they ate proper meals.

“Which we obviously understand, but the youngest of the children is eight, and I feel like at that age it's easy to explain that he has additional needs,” the man added.

The man and his sister-in-law then got into a fight, both believing that they were right in their stances.

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His wife later got a text from her sister where she was complaining about him being rude.

The man wrote, “My wife said I should [have] just accepted it when she hinted at not wanting him there, but I disagreed - I think he's just as deserving as everyone else.”

Internet users have defended the woman and claimed that she wasn’t wrong.

One user wrote, “Your sister-in-law does not owe you dinner at her house. She can refuse to host you for any reason or no reason. Neither you nor your son [is] owed family dinners at her house.”

Another user wrote, “Once your SIL [sister-in-law] said ‘no’, that should have been the end of it. But no, you want to make it a learning experience for her kids. That's not your job.”

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However, many people felt bad for the kid because of his eating disorder.

“The kid has a disability and the sister is excluding them because they can't be bothered to parent their children properly to get them to understand why they have different food?” one person commented.

   

   

“Eight is old enough to understand the world isn’t fair. Having a parent constantly fussing to make sure everything is exactly the same for each child is going to cause problems for the kids as they get older. The sooner they learn that life isn’t fair the better,” another person commented.

Some people even suggested alternatives to the man’s idea to have a meal with family.

“Why do you feel entitled to dictate the terms of family get-togethers in your sister-in-law’s home? Are you somehow incapable of hosting family get-togethers in your own home?" one person wrote.

"What’s stopping you from inviting the cousins over to your place where you can set the menu.”

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Sanika Nalgirkar is a news & entertainment writer. She has a master's degree in Creative Writing. See more of her writing on her website.

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