A woman has revealed that she is refusing to pay for her teenage stepdaughter’s pricey private school tuition now that she’s pregnant.
In the post shared on Reddit’s ‘Am I the A**hole?’ forum, user thrwayAmIReally explained that she and her husband agreed — without his daughter’s knowledge — that she would cease to bankroll her education if she became a teen mom.
‘My husband was a teen dad, we will refer to his daughter as An. An’s mom, grandma and [great]-grandma were all teen moms. An is now 16 years old, and pregnant,’ she wrote.
Taking a stand: A Reddit user has revealed that she wants to stop paying for her teenage stepdaughters ‘fancy’ private school tuition now that she is pregnant (stock image)
The stepmother said that when An turned 14 years old, she wanted to move in with them an attend high school in the big city that they live in.
They enrolled her in a ‘fancy’ private school because the local public high school had a ‘terrible’ reputation, and the Reddit user has been paying roughly 75 per cent of the tuition.
‘She has always been set that she wanted to be an economist, and that she wanted to move to another country to pursue her dream,’ she said of her stepdaughter. ‘I have been separating some money for this purpose, too.
‘My husband and I came to an agreement that I would also help her dream to come true, but I would cease any economic help towards her tuition if she became a teen mom (An did NOT know this) and he agreed.’
I will tell her that I won’t pay for her nice school and her child’s expenses if she decides she wants to keep it
The woman said the conversation took place two years ago, and now An is pregnant after her first year at the school. It’s unclear what the teen plans to do, but her stepmother recommended that she terminate the pregnancy.
She explained that she gave An articles and statistics about teen moms, making it clear that having a child will make her part of a vulnerable population and hinder her dream of studying in another country.
However, the woman said An’s mother and grandmother are both ‘ecstatic’ and think they can make teen pregnancy better for her than it was for them.
‘I think they’re absolute loonies; I bet they don’t even have the money to pay for the hospital when the time comes,’ she said. ‘I believe they think we will pay for all of the unborn child’s costs.
‘I am dead serious about stopping tuition and using the money I’ve been saving in other stuff if An decides to carry on with the pregnancy,’ she added.
Tough: Many Reddit users agreed the woman has no obligation to continue to to pay for her stepdaughter to attend private school, but they feared her decision would end her marriage
‘I have NOT and will NOT make the ultimatum of “terminate or I’ll stop paying your tuition,” but I will tell her that I won’t pay for her nice school and her child’s expenses if she decides she wants to keep it.’
The woman stressed that she has no desire to ‘become one of those grandmas’ who ends up taking care of the child, but she is willing to put some of the money she used to pay An’s tuition towards the child’s expenses.
The woman admitted that she can afford to continue to pay An’s private school tuition and put some money away for both college and the future child, but she feels like she would be putting a strain on herself to ‘reward her for being irresponsible.’
If An has the baby, she said she can go to either a public high school or one within her dad’s budget and try to get a scholarship to a public university because she refuses to pay for another private school.
She stopped taking the pill because mom told her she would get fat
Her husband feels she is punishing An, but she believes he and An’s biological mom should pay for her fancy high school if they are dead set on going there.
‘My husband is telling me I need to understand the situation,’ she explained. ‘I do not and will not endorse this teen mom dynasty in any way, this is the hill I will die on.’
Although she hasn’t spoken to An about the situation yet, she plans on telling her she can pay for her high school or child support but not both.
In an edit to her original post, the woman revealed the baby’s father is a young man that she met during her extracurricular activities outside of school. The parents offered to pay child support, but they can only afford $300 a month unless their son gets a part-time job.
The Reddit user also revealed that her stepdaughter was supposed was on birth control but her mother interfered.
Critics: Those thought the woman was in the wrong claimed she was giving her stepdaughter an ultimatum, whether she called it that or not
‘She stopped taking the pill because mom told her she would get fat and then proceeded to educate her on the “natural” way, as in having sex before, during, and some days after her period,’ she explained.
The situation is undoubtedly complicated, but many people agreed that the woman has no obligation to continue to to pay for her stepdaughter to attend private school.
‘It’s your money; do with it what makes you feel comfortable,’ one person wrote. ‘I think you’re being very generous to pay for most of her schooling and I understand why you would feel uncomfortable continuing to support her after this. But have a discussion with An about it before announcing your decision.’
Someone else added: ‘It seems that, if anyone should be making sacrifices for the baby, it should be the baby’s mother. There are limited resources and they now need to be shuffled around.
‘I have a feeling that this is the end of OP’s marriage though.’
Quite a few people worried that the woman’s marriage would come to an end if she stopped paying the teen’s tuition.
‘This is a completely morally justified hill to die on. However, if you’re going to do this, you should be willing to lose your marriage over this,’ one person warned. ‘Even if it’s just a remote possibility, that’s the potential endgame you’re looking at here.’
Some wondered why the woman was paying most of the tuition in the first place, but she explained in the comments section that her husband helped her with her college debt when he could, and now she is repaying the favor while he starts his new business.
The Reddit users who thought the woman was in the wrong claimed she was giving An an ultimatum, whether she called it that or not.
‘My issue here lies in the fact that, at this point, you are trying to force her hand by asking her to choose between her future and the child she is carrying,’ one Reddit user wrote. ‘I’m pro-choice to the fullest extent and I believe that yes, An’s life would probably benefit from the termination of this pregnancy. However, if she doesn’t want to, it is her body and her decision.’
‘Think the funny part is that you ‘showed her all these articles about how ten [sic] mums are a vulnerable group, yet I don’t see the irony in withdrawing support,’ another commenter added.