A dad has sought advice on Reddit about whether he was justified in kicking out a girl his daughter had invited to a birthday slumber party.
He says this particular 14-year-old was one of five girls his daughter extended an invitation to, and from the time she arrived she caused trouble.
He tells the sorry story with a good amount of detail.
"There was this one girl that she invited who I could tell from her attitude, was a spoiled brat. When she rang the doorbell, she walked in looking down at her phone, didn't greet me or my wife, and handed me her jacket without even looking up."
Not a great start.
"The whole night she was on her phone doing whatever the heck 14-year-olds do on phones. I thought she was just embarrassed or shy because maybe she didn't know anyone, but according to my daughter, she is a 'super-duper cool girl.'"
It gets worse... a lot worse.
"Anyway, towards the end of the night, my daughter was opening her gifts. [The girl] made a comment about every single gift (not exactly snarky, but more like she was just unimpressed). The final gift was from me and my wife, we bought her an iPhone7 by pooling all of our remaining extra money to buy it."
"[The girl] scoffed because she had the newest gen iPhone. I helped my daughter set up the phone with a sim card, and the rest of the night they just hung out in her room."
Then his daughter approaches him and asks, "Why couldn't you have just bought me the newest iPhone?" which he says is "really out of character for her as she is always grateful for receiving anything."
When she gets up leaving the phone on the table, the dad picks it up and takes a look. Here's the conversation he reads.
Daughter: "Hey it's me"
Girl: "Thanks for inviting me to ur lame slumber party lol, and congrats on the iPhone SEVEN haha"
G: "Aren't u mad that ur parents and friends got u such lame gifts" and "slumber parties are for little girls lol, but wtvs its cool"
D: "U don't like the party?"
G: "I just wish I could go home looool"
He decides to take action, knocking on the bedroom door and asking, "if I could speak with [her]."
"I told her she needs to grab her things, something came up. (I did this as to not embarrass my daughter in front of her friends).
Her mother is called, who, upon seeing the exchange apologises for her daughter's behaviour before asking if she could still stay. He says that it's best if she went, but afterwards his wife says he "overreacted" and that he should have spoken to the girl first and given her a chance.
He writes, "I firmly believe I taught her a good lesson that she needed to learn. It was MY DAUGHTER's birthday, and I didn't want the rest of her night ruined because of some spoiled brat who was making it all about her. I guess she didn't exactly do anything wrong, but at the same time her attitude was unbelievable," before asking if he's the as#$&le in the situation.
Redditors voted him "Not the as#$&le" with more than 2,800 commenters discussing the matter at length.
"The most important thing right now is teaching your daughter the things she should and should not accept, and a BIG one is not accepting people in her life who look down on her for not having an 'inferior' [mobile] phone or anything for that matter."
This person disagrees, however.
"I'm not sure that acting impulsively without talking to the daughter was a good idea. Realistically, this girl and her friends are going to give the daughter a lot of s#@% when she goes back to school. Okay maybe he saved the party, but that's not worth much if Miss Popular is going to get the other girls to bully her for the rest of the year. It's not really okay to act on [your daughter's] behalf in situations like this."
This person agrees. "OP will need to check up on this. That girl has the daughter's phone number and can very easily start to bully her through text or social media."
The thread gets locked by admin as people start getting pretty heated towards the OP, saying he acted from a "bruised ego" and was "stupidly heavy handed."
Many say he missed an opportunity.
"I feel like this could've been a teachable moment for you to talk to the spoiled girl and maybe get to apologise? Not sure if that would work or not or at least give her a warning that this type of behaviour wouldn't be tolerated."
Another makes the valid point that it's not his role to teach the girl anything.
"Why would she care that her friend's 'lame' parent has anything to say about her? Clearly she is happy with how she is. You can't change mindsets of people like this in a three-minute conversation. It's not his responsibility, it's the parent's to teach her right from wrong."
People put up some interesting and well-considered arguments from all angles so it's worth a read.