When it comes to family events, some people can be really insistent about attendance.
Especially if it’s a mother-in-law who thinks she should have bragging rights, cringed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor imperfect_mk was frustrated with her future mother-in-law, who was insisting that she attend a family wedding so that the whole family could meet her and her days-old baby.
But when her mother-in-law kept insisting, the Original Poster (OP) knew she just wanted a baby there to share with the extended family at the event.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for refusing to go to a wedding 9 days after my due date?”
The OP was pregnant with her boyfriend’s baby.
“For context, my boyfriend and I have been invited to his uncle’s wedding more than a year ago, before I was pregnant.”
“We’ve been together for only 16 months (but we’ve been friends for a decade), so, due to the pandemic, the only person I know from his family is his mother.”
She didn’t plan to attend a family wedding because of the birth.
“The wedding happens to be only 9 days after my due date, so I said from the beginning that I probably won’t be able to attend.”
“I probably will have my baby before (I’m supposed to be induced early for medical reasons), but he won’t be more than 2-weeks-old on the day of the wedding.”
“I’m also a new mother and I’m not comfortable leaving my 2-weeks-old baby, even with my parents, and I’m also not comfortable bringing him to a wedding, 3 hours away from home, with 100 strangers and their germs, during a pandemic.”
“I also don’t know how things will go, maybe I’ll have a C-section or be hospitalized for a couple of days, there’s no way to tell.”
“Also, personally, I’m not sure I would like someone to bring a newborn to my wedding…”
The OP was surprised when her future mother-in-law (MIL) kept insisting.
“So, I’m 38 weeks pregnant and my MIL told us that she paid for our dinner anyway so, if we feel differently then, we could go.”
“I told her that it was nice of her but I don’t think this is realistic and exposed all my arguments when she insisted.”
“She told me that it’s just not fair that my baby won’t have the same ‘access’ to his 2 sides of the family because I just don’t want to go. To be clear, I wouldn’t go either if the wedding was on MY side.”
The OP became frustrated by her MIL’s insistence.
“As I said, I haven’t met any of my boyfriend’s family, not because I don’t want to, but because nobody ever showed interest in seeing us. We’ve been to a lot of gatherings and birthday parties in my family because we’re close and they care to invite us.”
“I don’t think it’s fair of my MIL to make me feel like I’m in the wrong only because she won’t be able to show off her days-old grandson to her family right after he’s born. There will be more occasions, and they can always come to see us at home if they want to.”
“My BF is on my side. He may attend the wedding, but only if our situation allows it and I’m ok with that. It’s his family and I can handle myself for a night, if not, my parents are close by.”
“To clarify, No, I’m not going. Just wanted to know if I was an a**hole.”
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 pointed out the OP had the right to say what would make her comfortable.
“OP, stop talking with people as if this is going to be an option. Say no. No, you will not be attending.”
“If you haven’t given birth you’ll be dangerously overdue most likely, and if you have you’ll have a newborn too young to be exposed to such an event and travel.”
“‘No I will not be attending…’ and do not deviate from that answer as if there is any doubt. ‘…we don’t know if ‘partner’ will be attending, that will depend on the birth and how we are doing. We won’t know until just before the wedding…etc.'”
“Send apologies on your behalf now, that you’ll be missing it, and make it clear your partner won’t be able to confirm his attendance until just before. Say it’s quite likely he won’t be able to come due to the timing, but he will keep them informed closer to the date and/or after the birth of your child.”
“Tell your MIL to get a refund on your meal, and don’t treat her nonsense as valid at all. Tell her it’s a firm no.” – Ok-Beginning-5922
“OP saying “this wedding is 9 days after my delivery date” should be the end of the discussion about her attendance at it.”
“Obviously, it is extremely unreasonable to expect her to travel several hours to attend a large wedding, it is unreasonable to expect her to travel without her newborn, and even more unreasonable to expect her to be even slightly comfortable bringing her newborn to a large event like this.” – El_Ren
“NTA, OP. You take care of yourself and that baby of yours, and you let MIL know that you won’t be budging.”
“Your immune system will be weakened, your child’s immune system will be nonexistent (and largely dependant on you to provide the necessary antibodies and protections until the baby’s own immune system fully develops).”
“You will be exhausted, possibly hurting and healing, your inner organs and bones will be rearranging themselves back to semi pre-pregnancy position, and you will be sleep-deprived.”
“Do NOT let MIL (and by extension your BF, because MILs are real good at pressuring their sons, especially about grandkids) pressure you to do anything you’re not comfortable with.” – allthingsconsidered5
“First, you should not be traveling three hours soon after birth.”
“Second… babies arrive when they arrive. My first was 12 days early (helped along by inpatient doctors).”
“My fifth made me pay for that was 12 days late. But even 3 or 4 days late puts you less than a week postpartum, even with a relatively simple labor and delivery, you should only be resting, caring for yourself and baby, and only lifting baby at that point, not sitting in a car for hours.”
“I would definitely run this by your medical professional to give you back-up so you don’t feel like the AH because NTA.” – Spirited-Safety-Lass
Others said the situation would not be safe for the baby anyway.
“NTA ask your OB. She will tell you that you probably shouldn’t be going. Just use the Dr.’s as an excuse.”
“Though, I’m sorry your in-laws are selfish people who can’t see how dangerous it is to parade a newborn around like that just days after birth.” – MB1428
“NTA but seriously, just say that you asked your doctor, and they said no. If she keeps pushing, just ask her why she wants to go against the doctor’s orders and endanger the baby’s life.” – allison375962
“It’s wildly inappropriate to push for her attendance, much less the baby’s. On top of that, nine days past my due date, I was still pregnant! That’s an option that doesn’t even seem to have crossed their minds.” – jmbf8507
“Baby 101 that you don’t even have to have kids to know is: 1.) Newborn babies don’t have an immune system so you don’t take them into crowds and limit visitors, and 2.) People who have just given birth or are about to give birth can bow out of social life with no explanation needed.”
“This can’t be for real. But on the chance it is, NTA and wow what a crappy family.” – ArmNo8807
Some felt the mother-in-law only wanted to show the baby off.
“The OP said, ‘She told me that it’s just not fair that my baby won’t have the same access to his 2 sides of family because I just don’t want to go.'”
“What the f**k? I think you called it exactly right, she wants to use this event to show off a new baby (which is tacky as s**t to begin with, the wedding is for the people actually being married).”
“If you want to be really passive-aggressive about this, call or contact the bride and groom and make a florid apology that you were so looking forward to their wedding since you heard about it a year ago, but life intervened, and now you just can’t make any guess at what sort of physical abilities you’ll have 9 days postpartum and don’t want to inconvenience anyone because their wonderful wedding is no place for a demanding new baby, etc.”
“Get their blessing to stay yourself home. This also establishes contact so that people from his side of the family can contact ad invite you in the future to family events, and you aren’t having to go through MIL’s batshittery.” – Sea-Mud5386
“Get in touch with the bride and groom, so if MIL tries to say anything false to that side of the family, there will be people there to correct her and say that their nephew/the baby’s mother themselves called to give their regrets and apologize but wished them well.”
“Also, send a card to this effect. I would get a beautiful card and write a long-ish heartfelt message inside giving your regrets, your hopes that they have a beautiful day, and your hope to meet them sometime in the near future when everyone is healed up and properly vaccinated, etc.”
“If the baby HAS been born, include a picture of the baby with his/her regrets (or send an entirely separate card, which would be really cute, as far as I’m concerned) as well saying that they would have loved to come to see their wedding, too, but they’re hoping to meet all of their family in person as soon as they’re healthy enough and their mom is healthy enough to see everyone in person after healing and bonding time.”
“(Just don’t be specific because you don’t truly know who you’re dealing with and whether or not they’ll try to show up at your house the following weekend…)”
“This way, they don’t feel slighted and they know that you’re not just trying to keep the baby away from them (No normal human would think that anyways but, regardless, it’ll be very kind, warm, and thoughtful for being included on their big day.) as well as likely having a kind opinion of you before even meeting you that your MIL won’t be able to tarnish.”
“You’re NTA. I’d keep an eye on your MIL in the future, too, because she already sounds like a…doozy.” – Affectionate_Salt351
“A baby is not a prop for grandma to wave around at a wedding. Never mind that the wedding is probably not supposed to be about someone else’s baby anyway. I’m sure the baby will get over not having met the entire extended family 9 days after being born.”
“You don’t mention your husband, though. Since it’s his mother, probably better if he shuts her down.” – Nightfish_
“My MIL threw a fit because I didn’t want to go to my nephew’s birthday party with a 2-week-old baby. She only wanted him there so she could show him off to her family.”
“There’s a lot of grandmas (not all of them) that treat babies, especially newborns, as some sort of toy they have to show off and play with.” – sunmaid15
Though the OP was conflicted because of her future mother-in-law’s insistence about appearing at the wedding with her baby, the subReddit reassured her that she was under no obligation to attend.
Even on a good day, a person is not required to go to an event, but if that also includes needing time to heal and develop a stronger immune system, that seems like an especially good reason to not attend and simply ask to see the photo albums, or Instagram photos, later.