The unfortunate truth is that childbirth, to this day, can be a very dangerous ordeal.
Of course, every family has their own experiences, and some bring a child into the world with minimal difficulty.
But for one Redditor, it was a harrowing moment. And the birth itself turned out to be only part of the drama.
The Original Poster (OP), aptly named PoppaLoves on the site, shared his experience helping his wife navigate her struggle through birth in a post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit.
His title for the post clarified where the drama started.
“AITA for not letting anyone hold my son when he was born?”
OP began with the lead up to the ordeal.
“This happened pre-Covid but the fight started again about a month and a half ago.”
“My wife gave birth to our son November 2019. She had a very complicated pregnancy and ended up needing an emergency c-section which we were aware could happen.”
“We had talked about it for a while and she admitted hating the thought she would be the last to hold our son.”
So OP was very careful when the time came.
“So when he was born and she was still unconscious I did not allow anyone in our families to hold him, or even meet him really. They saw me but that was about it.”
“She was unconscious for four days but thankfully recovered and was able to meet and hold our son. It was about a day after everyone else got to meet and hold him for the first time.”
“Our families were upset but nothing really kicked off except for my mom and sister who were kinda pushy about it.”
But the drama didn’t end there.
“Then around January we had an incident.”
“My wife put up some photos of her holding our son for the first time and talked about how traumatic the birth had been and wanted to raise awareness of how dangerous pregnancy and birth can be and basically just saying how grateful she was to have them both be okay.”
“My mom and sister then really started acting like kids. Saying it wasn’t fair and we robbed them of those first few days with their grandson/nephew.”
Then a back and forth ensued.
“I told them plenty of people meet grandkids and nieces/nephews days or even weeks or months after birth and had this been Covid times it would not have happened for a lot longer.”
“But they said I was selfish and should not have done that just because my wife couldn’t meet or hold our baby.”
But OP was left feeling conflicted.
“I am only conflicted on this because someone else suggested I robbed my son of having more interaction early on and I should have thought of him over my wife’s feelings on the whole thing…”
“…and while most of me is screaming hell no, I wanted to see what a bunch of internet strangers would think.”
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
Most Redditors were on OP’s side.
Some even congratulated him.
“Definitely NTA!! Of course your wife should have been the first person (besides yourself) to hold your son! Good for you for sticking to your guns.” — Joodropinn
” ‘Spouse of the decade’ contender right here folks! Well done OP, NTA!” — DottedUnicorn
“NTA – your mother and sister aren’t actually entitled to hold your son at all”
“Like at all”
“They are only entitled to what you and your wife allow them to be entitled too”
“You did a sweet thing for your wife”
“They can either suck it up or they can’t just not interact with your son again” — JudgeJed100
“Nta. Not at all. Can’t imagine as a mum being unconscious and everyone taking pics with my new baby while I’m still struggling to regain consciousness. You did the right thing. Credit to you.” — Opinionu
Others were simply shocked at his family’s expectations.
“What? Your mother and sister need to check themselves. They think they should have the right to hold the baby before his own mother??? I highly doubt your son is going to devastated or that affected by the lack of ‘interaction early on’ “
“No. Your wife didn’t want to be the last to hold him, and it’s your child. You two come first.”
“Mother & father >>>> anyone else really in this situation.” — Ok_Yellow8056
“The ‘just because’ made me gasp…..just because the woman who carried him and risked her life to give birth to him hadn’t held him yet?”
“That’s a helluva ‘just because’, and your damned right they needed to back off and wait. NTAx100.” — crella-ann
“NTA in the strongest possible terms. I cannot imagine how stressful it must have been for you to have your wife unconscious for that length of time. If anyone was robbed of those first few days with your son, it was her.”
“You did exactly the right thing in prioritizing her holding him first over anyone else – if I was in her situation (I’m pregnant right now!) and woke up to find that everyone else had cuddled my baby before me, I’d be devastated.” — Kiwitechgirl
One person drew her support from personal experience.
“NTA: This hits home as a c-section mom who was given additional medication during the c-section without my knowledge or consent to ‘calm me down’ (I was not in any way worked up).”
“After a 26 hr labor that just put me to sleep. I remember very little of my daughter’s birth and didn’t hold her til hours later.”
“When I awoke and finally held her, she had already been bathed and my parents had held her. Now, I’m not holding anything against my parents or husband. They didn’t think anything of it.”
“Still, 20 years later when I see the first pictures of my daughter with my husband and parents and I’m not there, it stings a bit.” — NorthernLitUp
At least according to Redditors, looks like OP can rest assured he did right by the two people who are the very closest to him.