An AITA Birthday Cake Confession Has Reddit Upset

When you're a small business owner, charging friends and family for your services can be a sticky affair. In a Medium blog post, one small business owner says that parents and younger siblings shouldn't have to pay, but when it comes to older siblings and immediate family members, billing them is fair game — with a family discount, of course. Best friends and partners must get things for free but the rules change for all other friends and acquaintances. Needless to say, it can get complicated.

Luckily, Reddit communities like Am I The A**hole are here to help. The subreddit offers people a chance to tell their tale after which fellow Redditors pass a judgment and decide whether the person is in the right or wrong. A recent AITA confession has the subreddit upset, and it involves the age-old quandary of "was I wrong to pay a family member for their service."

The user says that they paid their 16-year-old niece Judy $50 for a birthday cake she baked for their son. They did so because the niece had to drop out of culinary school due to financial restraints and was selling bakes to pay for tuition. The uncle also felt that they should be paying for the ingredients that went into baking the cake at the very least. The seemingly noble thought, however, seems to have upset the brother (Judy's father), who thinks Judy should be baking for friends and family for free. Reddit isn't having any of it.

Reddit is with the uncle on this one

Judy's uncle seems to have alienated the entire family, who thinks that they shouldn't have gone behind the brother's back and paid Judy for the cake (via Reddit). The young niece has even been "grounded for acting so entitled." When asked who was in the wrong, Reddit pretty much unanimously agreed that it was the brother that was at fault: "People think that just because you're family, you don't deserve to be paid for your time and effort and skill. You did the right thing. She deserved that $50," one person wrote.

Other comments say that Judy's father was making the kid involuntarily work for free and things would have been different if Judy made the decision to bake the cake sans payment. The fact that the family says that the brother was only "trying to be generous" by not wanting his family to pay was absolutely wrong. As one comment points out, "You cannot be generous with someone else's time, effort, and supplies. Even your own kid."

Reddit has ruled in the uncle's favor, and commenters are even suggesting further ways to help. "OP might be able to better help by telling the niece he'll 'hold' the money for her until she's old enough to open her own bank account. Or possibly gift the academy tuition (directly paid to the academy)," wrote one user, while another suggested setting up a fund for Judy that can be in her control after her 18th birthday.