Members of a popular internet forum were left bewildered after one poster recounted how a lack of sugary drinks sparked a multi-front war of words with their extended family.
In a viral Reddit post published on r/AmITheA**hole, Redditor u/puddlespuddled (otherwise referred to as the original poster, or OP) said their family refuses to keep sugary drinks in their home—opting instead for water, tea and coffee —and that this is a major point of contention with opposite-minded relatives.
Titled, “[Am I the a**hole] for not having any kid friendly beverages at my house,” the post has received nearly 6,500 votes and 1,400 comments in the last day.
Explaining that they only give their 2-year-old sugary drinks on special occasions, the original poster said their sister-in-law started her three children on juice and soda before they could eat solid food. The original poster also said that, whenever their extended family visits, their clashing lifestyles are put on full display.
“We constantly get into arguments over us ‘denying’ her kids things to drink when they’re over,” OP wrote. “We always offer them water, milk, or decaf tea – they refuse to drink them.”
“It came to a head last week when she dropped by unexpected. Her kids tore through my living room to the fridge and her 11 year old threw himself on the ground and started screaming ‘YOU PROMISED AUNTIE HAD RAINBOW JUICE FOR ME!”” OP continued.
After asking their sister-in-law why she promised her children there would be sugary drinks, the original poster said they were asked to go out and get some, to stop the crying. At this point, the original poster said they had had enough, and unleashed fury on their sister-in-law.
“I said… ‘it’s not my fault you got your kids addicted to sugar. It’s not my fault your 11 year old still throws tantrums because you refuse to parent,'” OP wrote. “‘In the future if you want your kids to drink liquid sugar at my house bring it yourself.'”
“‘I’m tired of you using your kids to manipulate me and the rest of our family. Now get the f**k out of my house,'” OP continued. “She looked at me like I had [six] heads, grabbed her s**t, and dragged her kids out, kicking and screaming about rainbow juice.”
Sugary drinks, including many popular juices, sodas and sports drinks, can be harmful to adults and children alike.
Loaded with artificial ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, sugary drinks are often associated with weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart and other organ diseases, poor dental health and other major health issues, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) .
Five years ago, the CDC’s data collected by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) revealed that in the United States, nearly 50 percent of all adults consume at least one sugary beverage per day.
Unsurprisingly, however, the NCHS also reported that young people are the country’s most avid sugary drink consumers, with 63 percent of children drinking at least one artificially-sweetened beverage per day, and another 30 percent drinking two or more.
Despite the common notion that children and sweets go hand-in-hand, chalking the hyper-consumption of sugary beverages up to kids being kids can be dangerous and fails to convey just how severe this problem can be.
In the case of the viral Reddit post, Redditors responding to the original poster acknowledged the dangers of artificial sweeteners, while forcefully calling out the original poster’s sister-in-law for expecting a family member to keep their house stocked with special beverages to appease her sugar-starved children.
“[Not the a**hole],” Redditor u/DarmokTheNinja wrote in a comment which has been liked more than 6,000 times. “Ignore the juice and sugar details and you still have kids demanding items out of your fridge and throwing tantrums when you don’t have them.
“That does not reflect good parenting, and such parents deserve to be told like it is,” they added.
Redditor u/DaisiesPetals, whose top comment has received more than 10,000 votes, offered a simple response.
“Water is kid friendly,” they wrote. “You’re good and [not the a**hole]”
“Water is a perfect source of hydration. It’s not your problem that her kids don’t like it,” Redditor u/joanclaytonesq chimed in. “It’s so rude to show up at someone’s house with kids in tow and expect to be hosted.”
Newsweek reached out to u/puddlespuddled for comment.