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    This Teenage Girl Has Been Caring For Her Sister's Baby Since She Was 14 And Now Wants To Go To College Out Of State. Her Parents Said No, But The Internet Is Begging Her To Go

    "I asked why I should stay in a shared bedroom with my sister and young niece for my college years? They said not everything is about what I want and sometimes people make sacrifices for family as they are doing."

    Having a baby can be tough, and new parents often lean on family for help. However, there's a line where asking for help crosses into a place where parents expect others to take on parental duties, and that's exactly the kind of sticky situation Reddit user u/Abject_Panda_27, who we'll call Panda for short, found herself in.

    Animated image of a pregnant woman with question marks above her head

    Recently, 18-year-old Panda took to the Am I the Asshole subreddit where she sought advice about going to college instead of continuing to help raise her sister's newborn. Here's the story in Panda's own words: "We have lived with our parents in a two-bedroom apartment for nearly a decade now. So when Mary gave birth, her baby had to stay in our room. My parents worked more so they could provide for the baby, so it was mostly Mary and I at home taking care of her baby."

    Cartoon of someone holding a baby

    "If I wasn’t at school, my parents would demand that I go home and help my sister with her baby. I had no life, no privacy, and no love or attention since my sister had her baby."

    "I know, obviously, the baby and mother take priority, but I felt so alone. At 14–15, it was very hard for me to come to terms with my parents not asking me how I’m doing anymore, not congratulating me on my achievements, coming to my games, taking care of me when I’m sick, etc. I became resentful of Mary and my parents, but I did a pretty good job at never showing them that. I knew the feeling would pass, and it did by the time I was 16."

    "I got a job at 16, so I had some time to myself outside of school and my niece. My parents then coerced me to contribute almost 80% of wages to help Mary take care of her baby. I’ve always been a pushover so I couldn’t say no, especially because Mary and the baby did actually need that money. Most of the money my parents made was going to bills, rent, and car payments."

    Animated image of a woman holding a baby

    "Anyway, I told my parents I got into a very good college out of state on a near-full scholarship and that I’m planning to go. They asked how I can think it’s OK to just leave them to take care of Mary’s baby. I asked why I should stay in a shared bedroom with my sister and young niece for my college years? They said not everything is about what I want and sometimes people make sacrifices for family as they are doing."

    "Mary jumped into the conversation by saying she wouldn’t go off to another state and leave me a single mother alone if the roles were reversed. I said she isn’t alone, our parents are here. She said it’s not the same because they’re always gone for work. Am I the asshole?"

    It came as no surprise to learn this post was overwhelmingly labeled 'Not the Asshole.' For the most part, commenters congratulated Panda for her academic achievements and scholarship — something they felt her parents didn't do — and said she should enjoy college after all the sacrifices she's made.

    "No the asshole," user u/InvisibleSoulMate said. "You've made your compromises and sacrifices (way too much, in my opinion). It's time for you to have your own life that revolves around you and your future. If they really believe in that whole sacrifice and compromise for family thing, then it's time for them to return the favor and support you."

    They couldn't fathom parents asking their child to put their lives on hold for someone else's child and prospects.

    "Obviously not the asshole. What are you supposed to do, put your life on hold for the next 14 years until the kid grows up? Go, get an education and live a good life. You are not responsible for your sister's kid," user u/w0mbatina said. 

    And who knows? With her departure, Panda's parents may have to force Mary to step up and learn how to take care of her child herself.

    "Maybe they won't forgive you (right away), but maybe this will force them to find a new way of being. Your sister really needs to step up, and the baby should be around 4 now, so there's absolutely no excuse for her to not find a job.
    Wishing you the very best of luck, and I hope you have an amazing time at college and a wonderful life," user u/mik8c said. 

    Besides, it's not like anyone thought Mary was being genuine when she claimed she'd never put Panda in this situation.

    "I highly doubt that was true," user u/jaybloo said in reference to Mary's claim. "Someone so selfless wouldn't ask you to drop your dreams to take care of their baby and their problem."

    Either way, people want Panda to go get out of the house, stop parenting someone else's child, and, most importantly, watch her back now that her family knows her plans.

    "Just make sure you inform your school and scholarship people that no one is to email or call on your behalf about withdrawing your admission or scholarships. I would also look for another mailing address or P.O. box for any school-related mail to be sent to. Right now your parents and sister are desperate," user u/Holiday-Somewhere-96 said. 

    What do you think about this situation? Let us know in the comments.