Man Floored When Parents Task Him With Caring for Their Newly Adopted Children After They Die

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Older man and woman play with child
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One man has ignited a pretty intense conversation on Reddit this week, after voicing some controversial feelings he has about his adopted siblings. Namely, that they don't feel like "real" siblings because his parents adopted them more than two decades after having him. But that's not all: He's also concerned that when his parents die, he'll be saddled with taking care of them -- something he never agreed to and feels uncomfortable with for more than a few reasons.

  • In his anonymous post, the 26-year-old attempts to explain his unique family dynamic.

    "My parents had me very late in their lives, after a crapton of tries and being told they could not have kids," he wrote, adding that by the time he was born, his dad was 51 and his mom 45. Today, they're now 77 and 71 respectively, and compared to most people his age, are a bit on the older side as far as parents go.

    That said, they gave him the best possible life they could.

    "Despite their age they were amazing parents, loving, caring, strict but fair, and they were in a very good financial position in large part due to their age, so they put me through very good schools and paid my tuition to Uni and so on," he continued. "In other words, I had a great youth and was set up for success."

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  • The thing is, several years back, the man moved out, and his parents started to feel lonely as empty nesters.

    So lonely, in fact, that about three years ago, they started discussing international adoption. The man says he told them this was a "horrible idea," considering both are in their 70s and not exactly at a prime age for parenting a young child.

    But his parents decided to go with their hearts on this one and adopted a 3-year-old girl and her 5-year-old brother last year. Although he finds them sweet and all, he hasn't found a way to really connect with them.

    "I have only met them a few times so far all times they were extremely shy and frankly, I am not close to them at all as I live halfway across the country so obviously I do not consider them my siblings but more so as my parents' kids," he explained.

  • Being that his parents are older, he recently asked them what their plans were for the kids should they die while the kids are young.

    As dark as that question may sound, the man believes it was pretty practical, considering his parents' ages. But to his surprise, they seemed at a loss for words. In fact, both gave him a look of confusion.

    They replied with something he wasn't quite expecting ... 

  • "Obviously you will take them in, you are their brother," his parents said -- which left him pretty stunned. 


    "I pretty much had the same reaction as they had to my question and told them there was no way, I hardly know them, I am not close to them, I do not consider them my siblings and I certainly won't take care of two kids," he wrote.

    Oof.

  • As you might imagine, that response did not go over well.


    There was "loads of yelling and screaming," after which the man stormed out of his parents' house. 

    Things have been tense ever since, though his mom has sent him a few messages asking him to reconsider.

  • The man admits to feeling bad about the situation, because he knows there's no one else that can care for the kids.


    Apparently, there's no other family or close friends that would fit that bill, so he said "they'll end up in the foster system."

    Still, he's worried that taking them on would severely impact the relationship he has with his girlfriend, whom he wants to marry and have kids with himself. Also, he believes that his parents made this decision themselves, without considering his feelings on the matter or how it might affect him. So really, who's in the wrong?

  • In the comments, a lot of people sided with him.


    "Adopting at their age is a terrible idea," one person wrote. "They know they will die soon. Frankly, 10-20 years at most is what they can expect. You don't adopt a child because 'the house is empty,' you get a bloody dog. It shows incredible selfishness and short-sightedness on their part because they clearly haven't given much thought on what will happen to them once they're dead or too old to care for a teenager."

  • Several wondered aloud why his parents couldn't just foster an older child.


    "Yeah there are plenty of 15, 16, 17 year olds in the foster system that don't stand a chance against kids," one person said. "Why not help them?"

    To this, the man said that he'd initially suggested this to them, but his parents didn't take his advice.

  • Most of all, a lot of people felt that this wasn't a smart move on his parents' part -- and that wasn't his problem.


    "I just want to say three of my grandparents died in the 75-80 year age range," one person chimed in. "For each one of them within a year of their deaths I would've described them as fairly healthy/fit for their age ... Not saying this is the case for everyone, but it's a pattern I've seen play out a lot and I really don't think it's smart for someone in that age range to be primary caregivers long term for really young children."

  • Many people felt strongly that the man's parents should have run this possibility by him and consider his feelings before they chose to adopt.


    Because they hadn't, he should consider himself off the hook.

    "Unless your name is on those adoption papers, you didn't sign up for them," one person declared. 

    "How can they make a decision to adopt two young children so late in life and then make the assumption that when they inevitably pass you will be responsible for caring for them?" another person questioned. "That is truly [expletive] up. They are not your responsibility."