Last week, Tyler Baltierra penned a touching poem to honor 13-year-old Carly on her birthday.
He and Catelynn Lowell made the best choice for her that they could, but adoption is complicated and so are emotions.
Tyler’s troubled sister Amber, however, seems to be struggling with the carefully laid boundaries around Carly.
Amber made a post of her own, vowing to "have a relationship" with her niece.
Amber Baltierra’s very public social media post is getting a lot of attention.
"My niece is 13 today y’all," she began.
"Happy birthday Carly," Amber continued. So far, so good, right?
"I legit can’t wait to have a relationship with you," Amber wrote.
"Make today the best one yet," she added.
While that tribute was a public post and not a reply, it was not really the idea of Carly seeing it that angered fans — it was that she wrote it at all.
"That seems like she feels like she’s entitled to a relationship with her," observed one commenter on Reddit.
"Pretty selfish and inappropriate," the redditor described, "not to mention immature."
The commenter added: "I wouldn’t want a relationship with Amber if I [were] Carly."
"Tyler’s family being inappropriate and creepy in regards to their relationship with Carly?" remarked another.
That commenter continued: "I’m shocked I tell you, shocked!"
That is, for the record, absolutely dripping with sarcasm.
"It’s disgusting and inappropriate on so many levels," another Reddit user wrote.
"Carly biologically is her niece," the commenter acknowledged, "but that’s it."
The redditor pointed out: "She’s never met her or spoken to her."
"Amber is a STRANGER to Carly," a user wrote.
"And," the redditor continued, "to have Carly potentially see this one day (in my opinion) would scare her."
The commenter described: "This is borderline obsessive and stalker…"
Others held more subdued opinions but were nonetheless unhappy.
Multiple commenters noted that Amber had very clearly "crossed some boundaries" both in the post and in her own mind.
Others felt for Brandon and Teresa Davis, feeling that Amber’s post was "disrespectful" to them as her adoptive parents.
Amber has been troubled for some time.
It is no secret that Tyler’s family has had issues — and he has worked very hard to overcome his own share of emotional and psychological baggage.
Amber only recently regained custody of her own children, and fans have long worried that she may be once again under the influence.
Her post, however, could be the simple result of a lack of boundaries.
You don’t need to drink (or anything else) to cross some lines, especially when it comes to family.
People have been trampling all over each other’s comfort zones by making tasteless statements about relatives for millennia.
But for an adopted child, or anyone else who has complicated childhood custody issues, knowing that there’s a relative out there with an imaginary relationship with you is … weird.
Carly is thirteen. She is certainly old enough that at least some of what is said about her likely trickles back to her.
Maybe Amber wasn’t thinking about that. Maybe that’s exactly what she was thinking. Either way, it’s not responsible or appropriate.