You Be the Judge: Should He Have Kicked Brother and Nephew Out for EpiPen Prank?


Home is your safe spot, especially when you are coping with a food allergy like 12-year-old Naomi. But what happens when you live with practical jokers who have no idea (or don’t care) that their actions could land you in the hospital or worse?

That brings us to this installment of our popular You Be the Judge series, where we present a food allergy-related scenario and ask you to weigh in and share your opinions with our readership.

This story comes from the reddit post entitled AITAH for kicking out my brother and nephew because he played a dangerous prank on my daughter? by redditor u/Common-Efficiency338.

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We’ve often referred to the “AITA” subreddit (i.e., group) where this story is posted. AITA is short for “Am I the A-Hole,” and it provides a medium for people to question their own behavior and ask readers to vote.

Here’s his story:

My brother and his son Eli (9) recently got evicted because my brother lost his job. My wife and I took them in because we have more room in our house than my aging parents have in their condo. My wife and I have a daughter Naomi (12). Now, my brother considers himself a jokester, and it was funny when we were kids, but in my opinion it’s immature at his age. He’s passed this onto Eli, which is funny since he’s nine. Eli’s favorite prank is hiding other people thing’s.

Naomi is deathly allergic to many common things, so having an epipen on hand is absolutely necessary. Two weeks ago, Eli hid Naomi’s epipen and she freaked out. She wasn’t having an allergic reaction at the time, but still. The thing is, the epipen was on a shelf which Eli is too short to reach. My brother admitted to helping Eli with his “prank”, and I chewed him out about it. I told him that if he or Eli hid Naomi’s epipen again, I’d kick them out. I explained how Naomi could die without it, and my brother seemed to understand.

Last week, Naomi actually did have an allergic reaction and needed her epipen and it wasn’t where she’d put it. Eli rushed up to the guest room to get it, and thank goodness we were able to inject her before it got really bad. After I was done helping my daughter, I told my brother to get packing. He said that I wasn’t being fair because Eli had stolen it on his own this time, that it was just a prank, and Eli’s just a little kid, etc.

Pretty much everyone is pissed at me because my parents really don’t have that much space for two extra people in their home. They’re calling me heartless for kicking them out over a kid’s prank.

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As of this writing, the post has received over 9,000 ‘upvotes’ and over 1,000 comments, indicating that it has struck a chord with readers.

Now, there’s no doubt the brother is a knucklehead and is doing his best to raise a knucklehead… that’s a given. And if they hadn’t been home when Naomi suffered her reaction, what started a stupid prank could easily have escalated into a full-blown catastrophe.

The question, then, is whether you believe the poster’s kicking his brother and nephew out of his home and burdening his parents was the right move or whether some other intervention was warranted.

So now we turn to you, our readers, who’ve seen it all regarding food allergies, and ask you to be the judge. Was this the correct course of action? Has something similar happened in your family?

Let us know in the comments section below.

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Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom is CEO and "Blogger in Chief" of

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  1. Don’t let the door hit him in the arse! No way, grow up, move out and/or go cram in with mom and dad. Someone needs to learn a lesson and your daughter is first priority. Fool me twice…
    Get your safe zone back!

  2. I believe the girl’s father was right to kick his brother and nephew out. Especially if they have been warned. Food allergies are nothing to joke about. The girl’s father gave his brother a second chance with a warning. It is wise not to take them in ever again. Eli’s father should have thought about it. Hope the door doesn’t hit him on the way out. Eli’s father was setting a bad example for his son. It would be one thing if they stuck to funny but safe pranks like rubber snakes and whoopee cushions.

    I have an example: years ago my brother had a prank fart spray to spray around the room to make the room or house stink. He was threatening to bring the spray to our grandmother’s Christmas gathering at her house. My grandmother gave my brother a warning that if he used his spray at her house, that she would throw him out of her house. Her threat worked and he left the spray at home.

  3. Absolutely justified. He explained in clear terms what would happen and he followed through with it. Now they know the line and hopefully learned something. Living in his house should have taught them more empathy for his daughters situation. Realizing what could have happened if Eli had not been there, they should have been packing their own bags and asking what could they do to prove they understand so that they can come back later on his terms. His parents are trying to shift the heartless card because they don’t want to share limited space. Well guess what, they are doubly heartless for not willing to take in the 1 brother when he and his kid made a mistake and for not supporting the other brother over a decision that involved the safety of their granddaughter. Shame on them also. All he did was shut the door, all their victim blaming and name calling, their lack of empathy and refusal to learn, they are the ones burning the bridge.

  4. A life and death situation is nothing to joke about. They were warned so there’s no excuse for a second prank. I would have had a very strong chat with the 9 year old nephew and then suggested the brother to do a better job of raising his child by setting a better example and then invited him to move out and started looking for a new job.

  5. OMG what is wrong with his brother and nephew??? If Eli had not been home to retreive the epi-pen the daughter would have died. Good on dad for kicking them out to save her life and shame on anyone shaming him.

  6. I would have done the exact same thing. I have a 5 year old with severe allergies and I would not think twice about kicking my brother or nephew out of the house in the same scenario. My five year old is old enough to recognize the signs of a reaction and self administer his epinephrine, you can’t tell me that his 9 year old nephew wasn’t old enough to realize the error of his ways if his father had properly rebuked him the first time and explained the extent and gravity of the situation. True, kids are kids, but there are no excuses if you put another child’s life at risk. Totally justified.

  7. The kid is 9 years old, by that age he should know better and have more empathy for others. Don’t care if he pulled the “prank” on his own without his dad’s help, he was warned after the first time. Sorry not sorry – you’d be out of my house so fast.

  8. 100% think this was justified. This is about life or death. How would littke Eli feel if they faked a severe allergic reaction just to freak him out as pay back? Glad this dad and daughter duo are strong people and safe! Hope the brother either grows up or is never a threat to them again!


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