Artist Angers Her Sister By Charging Her Thousands After Her Nephew Ruins One Of Her Custom Paintings At A Party

For tales of strange behavior, there's no better place to visit than one of Reddit's most popular pages, "Am I The A**hole?" where people share stories from their lives and ask whether or not they're the heroes or the villains.

A story from Reddit user CattFen recently went viral thanks to all the people who couldn't believe what they were reading. Her post was titled "AITA for charging my sister £2500 for one of my paintings after her kid ruined it?"

It read:

"Backstory, I'm 26 and a fairly successful artist. My sister, "Lucy" (24) and her child "Ethan" (9) were at my house during a late New Years celebration. I had a sign posted on my art studio saying "DO NOT ENTER" and specifically made it clear to all guests that nobody was to enter that room. I'd also like to note that all my guests were asked to leave their kids at home as this was for ADULTS but 'Lucy' couldn't do that because she couldn't find a sitter. Anyway."
"Note : I also set up my boyfriends PS4 for him to play on so he wouldn't be bored."
"It's 10pm, and I hear a loud crash from my studio, I run up and see paint all over my recently work that so far had taken 15 hours to do. Ethan was sat there laughing, rubbing paint into my work, it's now unsalvageable and I have to restart the work, as it was a specific request from a client. Which also puts me behind for the rest of my work now!!"
"I immediately asked Ethan and Lucy to leave, and the next day I sent her a bill for the work. £2500 (~$3,300) (which is LOWER than I would've gotten for the work anyway)."
"She's absolutely screaming about it, the whole family is divided. My mom hates me, my dad completely agrees with me. Surprise, my dad is an artist, my mum is more 'smart smart'. My sisters husband agrees with me."
"I will admittedly say, I don't enjoy kids. Or their company. But I've always been a great auntie, presents at Christmas, gifts from vacation, everything he's wanted."
"Am I the a**hole for charging my sister £2500?"

Stlrivergirl thought it was obvious the artist had done nothing wrong.

"A) kids weren't welcome at your event. She CHOSE to bring her child."
"B) you CLEARLY marked off the room"
"C) she wasn't supervising her child, which is how he was able to gain entrance to a blocked off room, and destroy your WORK
You absolutely deserve to be compensated for your work."
"D). The kid is NINE. Not a toddler. Well into the age to differentiate right from wrong."

Substantial-Vanilla backed her up.

"I agree. I could understand a cheeky 9 year old entering the room when they shouldn't and accidentally making a mess (not excusable not does it get the sister off the hook but not totally unusual). But the rubbing paint onto the work is vindictive and extra bad behaviour which makes me have even less sympathy."

Hammerhead_brat thought the newphew was clearly in the wrong.

"S**t I could understand a nine year old trying to paint on a blank canvas, ya know cuz auntie and Grandpa are artists and he wants to be one too. But ruining someone elses work and laughing just shows he's probably a spoiled brat who doesn't have to face consequences for his actions."

Dolthra didn't think OP was in the wrong, but did think there was more to the child's behavior than met the eye.

"It's not vindictive. The kid was left up in a room alone while his mother went to go party on New Years. He made sure there was a loud crash and then started dramatically destroying things. The kid wasn't being vindictive, he was desperately seeking attention, which honestly isn't super surprising to me given his mother's age."

lexxislost thought the nephew should have never been brought to the party in the first place.

"I've got neurodivergent kids who require fairly intense supervision, and we don't even go to parties where kids are welcome because I have to do so much work to keep them engaged and entertained that I become de facto party clown for all the other kids, too."
"And it becomes pricey having to bring crafts in excess of our needs to accommodate all the other kids wanting to participate because adults didn't plan more than maybe a moon bounce to distract kids while adults socialize. It's also stressful, and irritating because I could have it so much easier not socializing with my adult friends at home."
"Honestly, a neurodivergent kid makes the mom an even bigger AH because that means the behavior could have been predicted because this crap would be happening all the time. Neurodivergent kids would have a really hard time in a situation like this, and would need more support than usual."

-TheOutsid3r- was a little less forgiving.

"Honestly, this sounds like he destroyed it on purpose. Think back to late grade school and the memories you have of that. A kid that age knows exactly what they're doing and usually is capable of reading."

forceofnatureandcorn made an interesting point.

"As a general rule of thumb, if one can train a dog to behave better than one's child of the exact same age, if not younger, that's sort of a problem."

beatissima had some great advice for next time.

"If you've been invited to a no-kids party, and you can't find a babysitter, just don't go to the party. It's that simple."

HeathenJack knew the nephew's behavior had ruined both the artwork at hand and many other supplies.

"NTA - this is your livelihood, art supplies aren't cheap, and not to mention the time it'll take you to recreate what was lost. The kid's 9 and still straight up disobeyed you in your own home? Yeah, I'd be pissed off, too.
Also, your sister sounds like one of those moms that can't be bothered to take responsibility for her own children, so maybe this'll open her eyes a bit."

Splatterfilm also noted that clients were on the line.

"She could lose more than one client, since this will delay her other works. And she's charging the sister less than what she would have made on the work."
"So that's art supplies, time lost, possible clients lost, maybe needing to give a discount to retain them. Truthfully, nothing lost from this can be replaced. The painting isn't going to be exactly the same. The sister is damn lucky to only be paying 2.5k for that chunk of life/career that's now gone."

The rule of family art is the same as products at Wal-Mart: you break it, you buy it.

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