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Woman Decides To Sell Late Father's House Despite His Widow Still Living There & Asks If She's Being Cruel

Photo: Ketut Subiyanto / Pexels
Woman moving house

A woman is being called "evil" and "heartless" for selling her late father's house while his widow still lives there.

In a post to the "r/AmITheA--hole" (AITA) subReddit, where people go for input into whether they were in the wrong in a conflict, she explained how she arrived at her decision.

She was surprised to learn nearly her father's entire estate had been left to her, with only a small portion going to his widow—just enough to keep her from contesting the will. 

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The woman didn't want any of her father's money or belongings because of their strained relationship.

She says that not only does she not need her father's assets, "given our relationship I don't feel right using it."

She and her father were "not close"—though they were in regular contact, she writes, "I can't say either of us knew each other well."

Rather than keep it for herself, the daughter transferred most of the assets to her daughter's trust fund.

But her father lived in a different country, making it impossible for her to manage his house.

Rather than "deal with the admin of his possessions," the daughter writes that she wants "the legal business done and to close the book on a very painful chapter, and grieve quietly."

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But her stepmother Penny still lives in the house and is unable to financially care for it.

The daughter writes that the house is "quite large" and that Penny doesn't work and was financially dependent on her father.

This means his daughter "would then have to keep up the house and grounds while she lived there."

She is not willing to do so, "both because of the cost and the continued involvement with my father's life, which I do not want."

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Her step-siblings have called her "evil and heartless" for selling the house their mother lives in.

After notifying her stepmother via lawyers of her intent to sell the house, she says she has received "vicious and vitriolic messages from her kids."

She went on to write that she understands their side of the situation, "but I'm not responsible for what my father decided to do nor... the people or the mess he left behind."

She adds that she has no ill intent toward Penny, but rather is "just trying to be done with a traumatic part of my life."

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The issue proved very divisive, but the majority of commenters understood the woman's stance.

A few users felt the woman should take a kinder approach to her stepmother. One pointed out that while she was in the right legally, but was skating on moral thin ice.

But most users agreed she's under no obligation to take care of Penny. As one user put it, "your dad structured his will like that for a reason. It’s none of your business."

Another commenter suggested a compromise in which she could "give [Penny] and her family a chance to purchase the house before you list it," while another proposed a "rent to own" plan.

But there was one thing nearly all users agreed on—if there's one villain in this story, it's the woman's late father. 

One user called him "petty and vindictive" for all but leaving his widow out of the will, while another wrote, "it is very cruel to have left his wife...completely vulnerable."

Another commenter summed it up perfectly.

"I find it unconscionable that all he left to his widow was a small sum... Why on earth was he married to someone he cared so little about?"

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.