The death of a loved one often brings a non-negotiable obligation to attend the funeral proceedings.
But what if something comes up that feels like a truly good reason to miss the event?
A recent post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit gave an example of that predicament.
The Original Poster (OP), known as Ashamed-Video-1431 on the site, gave a good sense what happened with the post’s title.
“AITA for telling my husband that I’m going to take our son for his doctor follow up and not his cousins funeral?”
OP began by sharing the core conflict.
“My husband’s cousin died last Thursday and they have the funeral scheduled for Wednesday this week.”
“Our son was very ill last Friday and was gasping for air. He’s only 6 months old so I took him to the ER.”
OP soon learned what was going on–and what she’d have to do about it.
“They told me he had croup and to keep an eye on him and to make an appointment for this week because a baby his age can get serious complications from this.”
“I called his doctor who is exceptional busy this week and only had one appointment for Wednesday at noon.”
“Which is right when the funeral is.”
Delivering that news was a bit complicated.
“I told my husband that I would go to the wake but unfortunately I have to take our son to the doctor because he could get to feeling worse.”
“He’s very upset with me and said I could reschedule the doctor appointment until next week (which I don’t feel comfortable doing) he thinks I’m an AH for not going and saying I just don’t want to go and he needs me for comfort.”
“Am I the a**hole?”
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 assured OP that she wasn’t being an a**hole at all. In fact, they were stunned by her husbands expectations.
“Do not mess about with a 6mo’s health. Your baby is totally helpless, whereas your husband is a grown man who can go to a funeral by himself and be comforted by all his relations who are there.”
“NTA and your husband should put his child’s needs before his own wants. What a self centred man.” — threeforagirl
“NTA. What parent doesn’t care about the health of their child?? He’s an adult, he can attend the funeral by himself.” — hbd20141976
“You’re not skipping your husband’s cousin’s funeral for frivolous reasons. You’re taking your child to a follow-up doctor’s appointment after your baby contracted a serious illness. And you’re willing to show up to the post-funeral gathering.”
“Why doesn’t your husband understand that your baby’s health takes priority here?”
“That said, is there another doctor in the office who can see the child if his regular doctor can’t? NTA” — DaniCapsFan
Others simply emphasized how important it was that she address the baby’s health concerns.
“NTA – A six month old with a breathing problem probably shouldn’t be around a crowd when there’s a pandemic anyway. You aren’t abandoning your husband, he is an adult. He is grieving, but he needs to be more understanding.”
“Not to be super harsh, but I’m guessing he wouldn’t want to be attending his sons funeral because he skipped his doctors appointment.” — baggleboots
“NTA one tragedy is already enough without dragging extended suffering and risk of worse in behind it.” — ShiggnessKhan
“Nta, this is not even a debate. Your living child comes first. Also, cold air really helps clear the croup. So take ice cubes in a bowl, metal if possible, and a fan and let the vapor from the cool air be breathed in.”
“My son had croop and whooping cough as an infant. It was so incredibly scary. This is what the ER staff told us to do once he was discharged. Hugs mama.” — lsp2005
OP responded to those criticisms by adding further details about her husband’s motivations.
“Edit to add: Husband is having an extremely hard time with this. They grew up together as he was an only child and was always with his cousin. They were more like brothers and he’s really struggling with his sudden death.”
“He had a heart attack at 42. Emotionally he’s a mess.”
“He loves our son though as he stayed at the ER with us and didn’t leave his side. He just wanted me to change the appointment to a time not during the funeral not that he didn’t care about our little boys well-being.”
A handful of Redditors did acknowledge her concerns about how her husband’s been feeling. They confirmed that nobody here was being an a**hole.
“NAH- lots of big feelings, all of them valid. Try to be kind and patient with each other.” — Aluckysj
“NAH you are following your doctor’s suggestion, they didn’t say to make an appointment for next week did they?”
“But I also get that your husband probably needs support right now, all you can do is be with him as much as possible, maybe try to catch the tail end of the ceremony if possible? Hope for a swift recovery for your kiddo!” — woopingcat
“NAH, I think the baby shouldn’t go to the funeral, but your husband is in full grieving mode and will probably be more understanding once he gets some distance.” — AppleThrower5000
“NAH, I don’t think either of you are very wrong at all, you need to do what you need to for your baby but I also just think your husband is grieving at the moment and not looking at the bigger picture” — MagicalMothOfHollow
Taking all that feedback to heart, OP’s edit also included her plans for next steps.
“I’m working on getting a appointment on Thursday now as they called and said they could squeeze him in for a 8am visit which I am fine with.”
“I never intended to take baby with me to the funeral or wake as he would probably cry during service and had planned on him staying with my brother for a few hours. Thank you all.”
Above it all, OP’s son is clearly living in an environment full of intention, emotional attunement, and, of course, internet know-how.