As adults, we know there are going to be times we have to do things we don’t want to do.
Having children likely is too big of an ask for someone who wants to remain childfree, however, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor flowers7935 had mixed feelings when his wife became pregnant—unplanned—and he had to navigate his own feelings about the pregnancy while also supporting her.
But when he wasn’t acting the way she had hoped, the Original Poster (OP) wasn’t sure what to do.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for acting unhappy at my wife’s and my gender reveal?”
The OP recently had a major life change.
“My wife is 7 months pregnant.”
“It came as a complete surprise, as my wife had been taking birth control regularly (we also used condoms, and I was denied a vasectomy by my doctor).”
“We had originally planned to not have any kids, but my wife changed her mind after her first ultrasound.”
“I respected her decision, even if I wasn’t the happiest about it.”
“I told her that regardless, I wasn’t going to force her to make a decision.”
The couple decided to host a sex reveal party.
“We had a gender party late because of issues with the pandemic but we finally got around to it.”
“I already was not happy, given the circumstances that I did not want to have any children.”
“I still participated to show support to my wife though.”
“Once the gender reveal happened, everyone, including my wife, was ecstatic.”
“She went to go hug me and I hugged her back, just not with the same energy.”
“She looked at me with a concerned face but went off to hug some of her friends and family.”
The OP’s wife was not happy with him.
“Once it was over and we got everything put up she blew up at me.”
“She said I embarrassed her in front of her family and the least I could’ve done was pretended I cared.”
“I told her I didn’t really see a point in throwing a party just because of the gender, but she wanted to do it, so I agreed.”
“She said that she understood that I didn’t really want to have a baby but that, since they were almost here, that I should probably lose the attitude already.”
The OP decided to be completely honest.
“I responded, saying that since she knew I didn’t want the baby, she shouldn’t be surprised I wasn’t enjoying the baby shower.”
“She supposedly thought that the baby shower would change my mind but was upset it hadn’t.”
“I told her that I wasn’t going to apologize for simply not showing any emotion and that she needed to give me time to adjust, especially with a kid on the way.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some rated the situation as sympathetically NAH.
“I don’t think this is really a question about who’s the a**hole, I think your world is changing dramatically in a way which you weren’t prepared for, and that therapy is almost definitely required.”
“It’s not wrong to be freaked out, but you’ve decided to go ahead with this, and now you need to find a way to come to terms with it— ideally before the kid arrives, so you can parent your child in the fullest and best way possible.” – Cavolatan
“I think there’ll be a lot of grief and sadness at this turn that OP’s life has taken. It’s very different from the future he’d imagined and been planning for. Processing some of these emotions will make it easier for you to be present in this next adventure.” – meekbeak
“Pregnancy is a weird time. With my current pregnancy, my husband and I did plan to have another baby, but I still had a ‘what have we done’ feeling when the test came up positive. Things that you didn’t consider before become all you can think about.”
“I think talking to a therapist before the birth would really help you. For me, the hardest part has been the newborn stage, as my children have grown older and more independent, it has got a lot easier to relate to them as people and we have a lot of fun together.”
“If you’re worried about how you’ll relate to a baby, that’s very valid, but they’re also not small for long. I think going through it with a therapist and trying to think what it is that puts you off children and how to think about that in a different way, whether that’s how dependent babies are or noisy toddlers can be or moody teenagers, these are all phases and they all pass.”
“It can be hard when you’re in it but on the other side, it feels different. I wish you all the best.” – Narrow_Map4950
Others encouraged the OP to be supportive of his wife and child.
“Please get therapy immediately. You need to process this, preferably before the baby is born. Your wife must already feel really alone in her pregnancy and when she gives birth she is really vulnerable and shouldn’t have to worry about you.”
“It sucks that this happened to you. But it’s not fair on your wife and child if you resent the child. Therapy can help with that or at least make clear how you wish to proceed.” – EntertainmentOk6284
“As much sympathy as I have for him, he has two options here – and neither of them is ‘Carry on how things are.’ That’s not something he can do anymore. He either has to step up and be a parent, or he has to leave if he can’t do that. Those are his choices.” – lordmwahaha
“His feelings are valid. But he is choosing to stay in the marriage. He needs to put in the work if he wants the marriage to be successful. He needs individual therapy to work through his resentment of the pregnancy, and they need couples therapy to learn how to properly communicate.” – Spoofy_the_hamster
Some sympathized with the OP’s feelings.
“This is because people are so baby obsessed that it’s disgusting. There are very valuable reasons for not having a child. As a woman, I recognize I have options because I wouldn’t want it, either.”
“Op, on the other hand, is a male — and therefore cannot get an abortion on himself. Whether people here like it or not, OP clearly is not excited for a child he never wanted and I certainly do not blame him for that in the least. I am completely, 100% on his side here.”
“NTA. But I will say that wife is TA for expecting OP to be completely on board with everything. Quite frankly, she is completely disregarding his feelings and this really does not seem like a marriage that will end well. No, I am not saying that the wife needs to get an abortion. I am saying she needs to at least understand why OP is not excited about her pregnancy.” – LexiGirl92
“It sucks for op.”
“Me and husband decided a long time ago we didn’t want kids, both of our decision. Second date type of thing, so that we didn’t waste each other’s time.”
“If I were to get pregnant now, and decided to keep it, I’d fully expect and support him walking away. Similarly, if he was miraculously able to have a child and got pregnant, and wanted to keep it, I’d fully expect him to allow me to walk away no strings.”
“Does that suck for the one with the kid, yes. But if you’re in a committed childfree relationship, then 1 person changing their mind, should not mean that both have to.” – olligirl
The subReddit was divided when the OP showed up, completely at a loss for how to handle his situation.
Most felt for him and the change in his life and some gently nudged him to be there for his growing family.
However the couple proceeds, most of the sub hoped it would lead to happiness.