I don't get told off for water changing my tanks (which I do by removing the water and vaccuuming the gravel with the siphon, then replacing it with clean dechlorinated water), but I do get told off if I attempt to clean the goldfish tank. The poor thing (he's a comet) is stuck in a 23 gallon with a snail, no plants or anything. He gets a water change once a month if he is lucky. I offer to do it whenever I do my own betta tank, which is next to his, but get told no. One day I did it anyway, and was told off because I wasn't doing it the way it "should" be done (all manner of pH adjusting crud, a cheapo water conditioner (I use Prime!) and conditioning salts and far too much cleaning of the filter). Well, actually, I'm doing at right - in fact, at least I'm doing it at all! :( He's such a beautiful fish. I love my family, but they are not doing right by him.
And I do get scoffed at for spending so much money on my fish, going to the local aquarium society etc, but hey, I'm 20 and it's my money. :) And I spend far more on my ratties.