A man took to Reddit to share a family drama concerning his new home, asking the AITA (“Am I the A—–e”) subreddit community if he was wrong for not building a wheelchair ramp in the front of his new house that his nephew could use to access the home.
“My wife and I recently bought a new house,” the Redditor began. “After we closed on the house, my sister came to see it and asked when we would like her husband to install a ramp.”
The Redditor explained that his sister’s son uses a wheelchair — and that her husband, who is in construction, installed their wheelchair-accessible ramp at their old home, as well as a ramp in another brother’s home.
“He and other nieces and nephew(s) used to come over to our old house all the time to hang out with our kids,” he noted.
“Our previous house was very standard and installing a ramp was easy,” he continued. “This new house, however, sits up high, which means it needs a very long ramp.”
After measuring “according to specifications,” the Redditor said the family “realized that we cannot install a ramp unless we get rid of some of our home’s features.”
He went on, “Our front yard is a tiered garden.” This garden, he said, is his wife’s favorite feature in the new home, “as she is an avid gardener.”
He said they “probably would not have bought this house if not for the garden, as we had our eye on another [home].” If they were to build a ramp, “it would cover the majority of the tiered garden.”
“If they go inside to cool down, [the] nephew will feel left out.”
The only other option is a ramp at the side door, the Reddit poster said.
“If we built a ramp in this area, it would make the driveway too narrow for many of our vehicles … We would basically lose half our driveway parking,” he said.
He added that he wouldn’t be able to get his old muscle car in the garage, either, where he’d planned to store it.
“I’ve explained this to my sister and she is unhappy about our reasonings,” he added.
The man went on about his sister, “She says she gets the parking problem, but the garden is just a cosmetic thing and not worth making her son feel unwanted, or like a second thought.”
Another reason his family is “unhappy,” he continued, is that the new home is “unusable” for family parties, since his nephew who uses a wheelchair is unable to visit there.
“We do family parties on a rotating system between me and my brother, since we’re the only ones” with homes that big enough for the family, he indicated.
“A plan must be made as to how to include this child in family activities and get him in and out of the home safely.”
The Redditor said that he told the family they could host parties out in the backyard of the new home in the summer. “It’s big and has a lot of trees and a large canopy area, where we can put some nice outside furniture and barbecue.”
He added, “The garage also has a bathroom that is accessible, so it shouldn’t be a problem for [my] nephew to [visit] so long as everyone hangs out outside.”
His family, however, thinks that this idea is “unreasonable,” he shared.
They felt it would be “too hot to stay outside the whole time and people will need air conditioning.”
He added that if everyone went inside to “cool down, [my] nephew will feel left out.”
The Redditor noted that his brother is now unhappy, too, because he will “always have to host” the family during the holidays.
Fox News Digital reached out to the Redditor who revealed the issue, and to a psychologist for expert commentary as well.
A Boston-area mom of a child with a disability weighed in on the sensitive issue.
“Don’t give up on a solution for both families.”
“A plan must be made as to how to include this child in family activities and get him in and out of the home safely,” she said.
She noted that since it is not the nephew’s home, she understands why the homeowner wouldn’t want to destroy a garden. However, she also said, “Today, there are a lot of ways to move people who use a wheelchair.”
She added, “This could have been discussed when the house was purchased, prioritizing a child that never asked to be differently abled. It sounds like he is an important part of the family and needs this family’s support.”
The Reddit post quickly garnered over 8,000 up-and-down votes, with the AITA community deeming the Redditor “NTA,” or “Not the A—–e.”
Another Reddit user weighed in, commenting to the original poster, “As a wheelchair-bound person, I have to back you on this. Especially since if the nephew’s visits are only occasional, someone can lend a hand and back the chair up any stairs and later help ease it back down.”
Another said, “If your BIL [brother-in-law] works in construction, maybe he can build a temporary ramp that can be assembled and disassembled … quickly for get-togethers.”
The commenter added, “Maybe it could be designed for the side door so the garden doesn’t get trampled.”
This person also added, “Don’t give up on a solution for both families.”