The very first rule to be a responsible human being is to be there for your loved ones whenever they’re in a crisis. Unfortunately, not everyone does that!
An internet user asked, “Am I a jerk for staying behind while my husband had to leave our vacation early to deal with our daughter?”. We need you to find out.
The Original Poster (OP) (60f) often goes to visit her sister and her (sister’s) husband in another province, flying there and back. This time I invited my husband (59m) along with me for the first time. He wasn’t very keen on going due to our home situation.
What Does OP Say
“Our daughter, a 24-year-old female, still lives with and is heavily dependent on us as she is recovering from severe substance use disorder, and her mental age is more like 13 due to the effects.”, says OP.
The Subsequent Issues
This has caused issues when leaving their daughter home alone in the past; for example, the last time OP went to visit her sister, OP’s husband wasn’t home the whole time because he flew in and out for work, and while they were away.
She had a relapse and then had random people come over to their home, which was not allowed, made a disaster of the house, and was so high on amphetamines that she was delusional and calling all of their other children yelling unintelligibly (they have three other kids who are all out of the house).
“She also has a habit of leaving taps running for no reason, and is generally not a very responsible person even when we are home.”, says OP.
OP Convinced Her Husband
OP convinced her husband to come along anyway. Because she hadn’t left her daughter alone in a few months, OP thought it would be fine this time. Also, OP wanted him to help cover the costs of the trip.
During one of the layovers, he had a phone call with their daughter and afterward told OP he got a bad feeling that her voice sounded off, and he wanted to turn around and go back.
“I again convinced him that he was overthinking things and it would be fine, so he agreed to keep going.”, says OP.
What Happened The Day After They Arrive
The day after we arrived, however, OP received a text from her son saying that they should probably book the first flight home.
Apparently, he had gone to check up on the house over the night and had discovered their daughter clearly high, the house in absolute disarray, a street person and their dog in their house, and the basement flooded.
“I guess they were both too high to take the dog out because it had defecated in the house multiple times. She had also been driving our car around, which we left her the keys to, in this state.”, says OP.
What Did OP And Her Husband Decide
OP’s husband knew he would need to go home to deal with it, and OP decided she would stay and enjoy the last five days of the vacation since it had already been paid for, and they might as well get their money’s worth.
OP’s Husband Din’t Oppose
OP’s husband didn’t oppose this and has gone home to deal with the extensive damage due to the flooding, however, OP’s other children are saying that this was unfair to him and selfish on OP’s part since the vacation was her idea. OP’s husband is also saying she should have listened to his concerns.
What Does OP Say In Her Defense
“I tried to explain that I have to enjoy my life even if I’m caring for my daughter, and it’s not fair for me to not be able to go on vacation anymore due to this and that I couldn’t have seen this coming, but they are still saying I should have known better and shouldn’t be making my husband deal with everything.
Am I the jerk here?”, says OP.
That Is Extremely Selfish
“You’re the jerk. You are indeed allowed to enjoy your life, but is your husband not? You sent your husband home alone to fix and clean up everything himself and take care of your daughter alone. While you are the one who put him in that situation to start with.
That is extremely selfish. Your other kids are right.
And ‘I decided…’ is very telling, those things should be a mutual decision. Would you have been okay with it if your husband decided that you should go home and take care of everything while he enjoys his vacation?”
Your Involvement Was Much Needed!
“You’re the jerk. Your daughter practically destroyed the house and made a big mess of it, your help wouldn’t have gone amiss. In such an emergency situation, the two of you should have gone home and repaired the damage.”
Everyone’s In The Wrong
“Everyone’s in the wrong, you said your husband flies in and out for work. Sounds like you deal with your daughter 24-7 while he travels. This was your break from your daughter. Albeit work, he still gets a break.
Your other kids are upset with you, are they older? They could have taken turns staying the night with her if they felt you must care for her 24-7. Most of all if she keeps relapsing and has cognitive problems, she needs to be in a residential treatment program.”
You Are More Wrong Than Your Husband
“Everyone’s in the wrong. You are more wrong than your husband. You both left someone with the mental capacity of a 13-year-old home alone? Not only a jerk but if her mental capacity is really that of a 13-year-old, this could be neglect of an adult with a disability.”
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