A quick scroll through Instagram might leave you thinking that everyone out here is dying to have babies or, at the very least, loves to hold and be around them.
But as a post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit illustrated, that’s hardly a unanimous outlook.
The Original Poster (OP), aptly known as throw_me_awaybaby on the site, led with a direct title.
“AITA for not wanting to hold a baby”
OP kicked off by introducing the key players.
“I [35-year-old female] met my husband, Charles [40-year-old male], 5 years ago.
“He has been friends with Kayla [female in her 30s] since they were in high school.”
“Her and her husband, Alan [male in his 40s], had their first baby last year.”
Then she gave some personal info.
“Hubs and I are childfree, though he’s pretty good with kids while I’m more awkward around them.”
I am also an introvert and socially awkward as well. They know this.”
“We were invited over to meet the new baby Addie last month with a few other friends.”
Right off the bat, things became interesting.
“We get there and say our hellos. Hubs goes to get us drinks and Kayla brings over Addie to me and asks if I would like to hold her.”
“Before I can even finish saying no thank you she has shoved her baby into my arms.”
“My face apparently showed my annoyance and surprise, because she started laughing and goes, ‘Oh wow you look like a shocked pickachu!’ “
OP wasn’t laughing.
“I tried to hand Addie back to her, but she backed away still laughing and calls for our husband’s to come over.”
“Everyone is now looking at me and I’m so embarrassed.”
“I try again to hand back her baby. AND SHE WONT TAKE HER! So I take Addie and put her in the playpen thing and walk out the door.”
And it went on from there.
“Hubby followed me out to the car and asked if I was alright. I told him I just want to go home.
Kayla and Alan follow us outside. Tells me ‘she’s just a baby,’ ‘Why won’t you hold her,’ ‘it was just a joke.’ ”
“I don’t respond because I know I won’t be able to hold in my feelings so I just got in the car. Charles is telling her to stop and Alan isn’t saying anything.”
But then there was a parting escalation.
“Hubby says he’ll call her in a couple days and gets in car. As we’re pulling away Kayla yells that I didn’t have to be such a bi** about it and ruin the party.”
“She has called all their mutual friends saying I’m a horrible person who hates children and I ruined the first party since covid and having a baby.”
“A couple people from the party on her side saying I’m an AH but others are saying it’s on her because she put me in that situation.”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Redditors were just about unanimous in their commentary. They explained that OP wasn’t the a**hole at all.
“NTA They forced you to hold the baby, and then when they saw you were not comfortable holding the kid instead of taking it back they chose to mock you, and make you into a spectacle – they are the asshats here not you.” — PAUL_DNAP
“NTA There is a lot of pressure for women to automatically be baby crazy. If you don’t want to play with a baby, hold the baby, have the baby, you get grief. (And I love babies and am absolutely baby crazy and will hold any baby at any time.)”
“Sounds like Kayla assumed you would be into holding the baby because you are a female and then instead of just taking the baby back, doubled down to embarrass you. Walking out may have been a bit much but you were obviously embarrassed, put on the spot, and mocked. Understandable.”
“P.S. If this ruins a 20 year friendship, it wasn’t much of a friendship.” — Ok-Cheetah-9125
“NTA. Babies give me such anxiety, so I get you. They kinda forced the kid into your hands and made fun of your obvious discomfort. I would’ve put the kid down and left too. They didn’t let you answer and they didn’t listen to you.”
“They are lucky you were at least able to hang on to the kid until you put her in the playpen. Some people get triggered and go totally rigid. If that were you, their idiocy would be to blame for any injury to the baby, not you.” — Freakin_Merida88
Some questioned her friend’s parenting decisions.
“I can’t comprehend why parents would want someone who is clearly uncomfortable with holding a child to hold their baby. It doesn’t make sense to me. NTA.” — whisperatmidnight
“NTA. And what kind of awful parent hands their baby over to someone who quite clearly doesn’t want to hold him or her? I don’t know that I would have walked out, but I certainly don’t blame you, given how rude and disrespectful they were to you.” — Main-Watercress-5829
“NTA shoving a vulnerable baby into the arms of someone who is clearly uncomfortable is a hell of a ‘joke.’ Violating boundaries isn’t funny. Gathering people to laugh at you isn’t funny. Playing games with baby’s safety isn’t funny.”
“(I get you posed no danger to the child. But in my opinion people uncomfortable with babies are more likely to hold them incorrectly or drop them, particularly given your attempts to transfer her while mom walked away.)”
“They werent laughing with you, they were laughing at you. That is shitty friend behavior.” — JusttheBean
People took the chance to make some societal criticisms.
“NTA. For the Love of All that is deep fried and holy can we PLEASE normalize the thought that not everyone on the planet gets all gooey about babies and wants to hold them!” — Several-Pay-8964
OP can rest assured her response to a suddenly appearing baby was well within bounds.