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Man Asks If He's Wrong For Telling A Boy's Dad That He's The Reason His Son Gets Bullied

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sad son hugging his mother at home.

A father was accused of being a "jerk" by his brother after blaming him for how his son was being treated at school.

Posting to the subreddit "r/AITA," the man revealed that his brother's actions were starting to affect the way that many of the students at school were treating his nephew.

He blamed his brother for the relentless bullying that his son had to endure.

In his Reddit post, he explained that his brother was the type of person who dressed and lived his life without caring about other's opinions or feelings. He was extremely comfortable in his skin and chose to wear clothes that didn't fall within the traditional gender parameters.

For example, he recalled his brother often wearing dresses and other outfits that many deemed "too feminine," while also still wearing "traditional masculine" clothes, such as suits. For him, how his brother dressed didn't strike him as a problem until his brother began dropping off his son at school.

"My daughter goes to the same school and I used to drive both of them," he wrote. "Ever since he started to do this, he just embarrassed his kid." 

Photo: Kvonomax from Getty Images / Canva Pro

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To add to the drama, he explained that his daughter didn't want her uncle to drive her to school anymore and instead chose to wake up extra early so she could catch the bus. When he asked his daughter why she had a sudden change of heart, she told her dad that because of how her uncle dressed, many of the other kids at the school were starting to bully her cousin.

"She also informed me that she will not be helping him since she doesn’t want it coming onto her since it’s her uncle. I’m a little disappointed she won’t stand up to them but I also don’t blame her for not wanting to get involved."

Man asks if he's wrong for telling a boy's dad that he's the reason his son gets bulliedPhoto: Monkey Business Images / Canva Pro

Apparently, on a specific day, the teasing and bullying got worse, and he ended up getting a phone call from his brother who was angry that his niece refused to speak up on behalf of her cousin. However, his rebuttal to his brother's anger was simply to put all of the blame on him for why his son was being bullied in the first place.

"I told him the reason his kid is bullied is due to him and he needs to send him on the bus or stop embarrassing him," he admitted. "He’s [angry] I blame him and being against his artist freedom. He thinks I am a huge jerk."

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Many people agreed that it was unfair for his brother to blame his niece for not speaking up against the bullies.

"While it is unfortunate that people judge others on their fashion, your brother is being ridiculous and selfish. Kids will make fun of something so pointless and outlandish," one Reddit user wrote.

Another user added, "How is his daughter supposed to stand up to groups of kids who are two years older than her? Why on earth should she be encouraged to put herself in possible physical danger by intervening and guaranteed bullying that she has no capacity to defend herself from? Terrible, dangerous advice from you."

However, other people were flabbergasted that this man's brother was being blamed for the ruthless and awful behavior of others, especially when he had every right to dress however he wanted to.

"My husband is a straight man who feels most comfortable in dresses. If we ever have kids, would it be totally fine for kids to bully our kids because my husband wore a dress in the car to drop them off?" a third user chimed in.

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A fourth user agreed, writing, "[His] brother shouldn’t have to apologize for how he dresses or change his attire to appease children. I think him not backing down or conforming to the norm and staying true to his authentic self could be a great lesson for his son to learn about."

At the end of the day, this man's brother shouldn't have to stifle who he is and his self-expression to make others feel more comfortable. It's truly a shame that his son has to bear the brunt of that bullying, but no blame should fall on his father either. As for his niece, there is a way to teach children to stand up against other children they see being bullied without directly putting themselves in harm's way.

   

   

It's natural for her to want to protect herself, especially as a child, but in the process, she's leaving her cousin behind to fend for himself. The best advice to give in that situation is to make sure that the little boy doesn't feel alone in something as detrimental as experiencing bullying.

No one should have to compromise who they are for the sake of others and instead of focusing on who to blame here, this father can emphasize the importance of individuality and support for each family member. 

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.