Whether or not to become a parent is a decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
While the first thing any potential parent should consider is if they can give a child all the love and devotion it deserves, several other factors need to be taken into account.
Including whether or not you are willing to sacrifice a significant amount of your life to focus on being a parent.
The wife of Redditor Fun_Bandicoot3933 had trouble getting over never pursuing her dreams to the best of her abilities,
Despite some serious hesitation, the original poster (OP) eventually allowed his wife to travel and finally have the opportunity to pursue everything she dreamed about, leaving him and their two children at home.
However, when the OP realized the toll his wife’s decision was taking on their children, he finally insisted some changes needed to be made, which did not please his wife at all.
Wondering if he was being insensitive to his wife, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for not letting my wife FaceTime our kids?”
The OP explained why he made the somewhat surprising decision to forbid his wife to stay in contact with their children.
“Throwaway account for obvious reasons my wife (35. F[emale]) and I (34 M[ale]) have been married for about 5 years and have 2 kids (1 F) and (2.5 M).”
“Some time ago my wife had mentioned having regrets about never having lived in NYC since that was always her dream.”
“I didn’t think much of it at the time until a few months ago when she told me that she wanted to move there temporarily by herself to see if she could ‘make it there’ (she’s an artist).”
“After a lot of discussion we agreed upon her living there for a year and she said she would plan on coming home once to visit during that time at Christmas.”
“This was a difficult decision for me since I work 60-70 hours a week and we have 2 young kids but I don’t want her to have any regrets or end up resenting me and luckily my parents have been willing to help out a lot.”
“We were able to find her a decent sublet that she moved into about 2 weeks ago.”
“Since she has been gone she has FaceTimed me to see the kids about 3 times.”
“That’s great and all because I want her to see the kids but after every call our son has had a complete meltdown.”
“After the most recent call it took me an hour to calm him down.”
“I don’t think that’s healthy for him and honestly it’s a lot for me to deal with on top of everything else.”
“Recently I told her that I do not want to FaceTime her anymore with the kids for that reason and she was very upset saying it’s not right for me to keep the kids from her etc, I just have to learn how to deal with meltdowns and that eventually they will get used to seeing her on FaceTime.”
“I should probably mention that this is not the first time she has left for an extended amount of time.”
“When our son was about 6 months old and then again when he was about a year she was gone for 2-3 months visiting her mother who has health issues which I understood at the time.”
“I should also mention that early in our relationship and marriage she did sacrifice a lot for my career which is part of the reason I felt like I needed to ‘let her’ do this.”
“I definitely was not encouraging her to do this or even ok with it.”
“I absolutely understand that this arrangement is ridiculous.”
“When she first came to me with the idea I actually thought it was a joke, followed by me asking if she was insane, followed by a lot of arguments, some discussion, more arguments etc. but at the end of the day I had to acknowledge that she is a grown woman and is going to do what she wants.”
“My hope was that if she got this out of her system, she would come back, and we would be a happy family.”
“I know that’s very naive, but that’s my hope.”
“If I were to threaten divorce, then she would leave anyway but not come back.”
“I’m very much between a rock and a hard place.”
“I was also hoping that because the kids are so young they wouldn’t even remember her leaving.”
“I’m also now realizing that that is very naive, but aside from the FaceTime meltdowns, the kids are very happy and well taken care of.”
“They’re very attached to their grandparents and see them almost everyday.”
“I think she’s being unfair to me so AITA?”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
The Reddit community unanimously agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to allow his wife to FaceTime with their children.
Everyone agreed that the OP was only thinking in the best interest of their children, with many finding that the OP’s wife was being selfish for putting herself before her children, with many even questioning if she was fit to be a mother.
‘I’m sort of speechless.”
“Your children are so young.”
“So so young.”
“I get why your wife felt bad about not making some of her dreams come true, which lots of parents have to come to terms with, but she essentially abandoned her young children when developmentally they needed her the most.”
“And it wasn’t like she was in the military and had no choice. She chose to leave, both them and you and the life you built together.”
“I just, I don’t even know what to say.”
“I think you need to speak to a child therapist to see what the best path forward should be.”
“This is a traumatic experience for your children.”
“You and them need help.”
“She hasn’t wanted to at least speak with them once a day?”
“Read them a book before bedtime (get two books, she keeps one, and you keep one)?”
“The family law attorney in me wants to warn you. You may be coming to a fork in the road.”
“What happens when your wife hasn’t made it work in one year?”
“Will she want to stay in NYC?”
“Will she want to come home and admit defeat?”
“If she comes home, will she be content with her life?”
“My mom was not meant to be a mother, and she left.”
“My dad had to raise us by himself without much help.”
“We saw our mom occasionally but she lived the life of a single person, not a single mother.”
“You should probably talk to a divorce attorney in your state and just educate yourself on what would happen if your wife decides not to come home.”
“What rights do you have, what rights would she have, what would happen with your kids?”
“I’m going with NTA because your son is so young. He doesn’t understand why he can’t see his mom in person and why he’s barely seeing her on FaceTime at all.”
“Limiting his trauma is the best thing for him until you can get a professional involved if she’s not going to FaceTime him frequently and on a set schedule.”
“I wish you and your children good luck.”- DreamCrusher914
“She chose to leave the kids, so she doesn’t get to play the ‘it’s not right to keep them from me’ card.”
“She left you to handle all of the hard stuff while she flitted off to do what she wanted.”
“Temporarily stopping the calls, IMO, is okay as long as you work with your son (preferably with a therapist) to turn the calls from trauma-inducers to healthy communication.”
“NTA for now.”- ProfPlumDidIt
“But I think your marriage is over.”
“Absurd that your wife decided just to ditch all of you to go ‘live her dream’ while your children are this little.”
“This must be so traumatic for your son, who’s used to his mommy and misses her.”
“What your wife is doing to a callous and selfish.”
“It sounds like living her dream means living a child-free life.”
“Good luck.”- _A-Q
“Damn, your wife sucks.”
“She abandoned her 2 toddlers for something she should have done before having kids?”
“NTA, working 70hrs and dealing with 1-hour meltdowns by yourself is not something I would do, protect the little peace you have.”
“What’s gonna happen if your wife ‘makes it out there?'”
“She’s not coming back, is she?”- Girl_In_RedCostume
“But I think this ‘one-year’ deal is going to become a permanent deal.”
“It’s astounding that a parent can just abandon such young children for such a flimsy excuse as ‘pursuing their dreams’.”
“I strongly recommend taking the children to therapy and also setting firm boundaries with your wife.”- Purrminator1974
Very few people haven’t once wondered what their life might have been like had they taken the road not traveled.
However, one can’t help but be surprised that the OP’s wife made that a priority before being there and taking care of her children.
If she finds it hard not to wish her children both a good night via a computer screen, perhaps she should consider how they feel that she’s not there to do so in person, by her own choice.