in , , , , ,

Mom Balks When Friend Asks Her To Watch Baby While She Works Instead Of Jobless Husband

A woman holding a baby on her shoulder.
PeopleImages/Getty Images

Some people dream of being parents all their lives.

However, when adulthood finally arrives, the reality of what it takes to be a parent also becomes increasingly clear.

For children require not only love and attention, but also a comfortable place to live, constant attention and supervision, not to mention clothes, food and toys.

As a result, even when people know they could love a child with all their heart and more, sometimes they realize they are in no position financially to provide for a child.

Redditor Fresh-Cucumber-980 found herself in a position that allowed her to comfortably raise two children of her own.

When the original poster (OP) became pregnant with her second child, so did one of her closest friends.

Unfortunately, the OP’s friend discovered soon after giving birth that she was not in the best position to bring a child into the world.

While she thought the OP might be able to help her out, the OP declined, pointing out there was someone else who could provide this help.

A suggestion that sadly led to a war of words between friends.

After being called “heartless” by her friend, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for telling my friend it’s not my problem she married a useless man?”

The OP explained how she went from close friends to no. contact following a conversation regarding childcare:

“I (32 F[emale]) am a single mother of two kids (6 M[ale] and 5 months F).”

“I am a single mother by choice (my kids are donor conceived).”

“I am lucky enough to have a good job (French teacher in a private school), and a paid off house (parents’ life insurance and inheritance).”

“Before I had either of my kids, I made sure to have a year’s living expenses saved, then I would take a sabbatical to recover from birth, as well as bond with my kids.”

“While on sabbatical, I still tutor some kids for some extra income.”

“My friend (34 F), just had a baby 2 months ago.”

“She is the breadwinner in her household, and her husband has been unemployed since he was laid off during COVID.”

“It was great to be pregnant at the same time, as well as having a friend with a newborn.”

“But it has turned sour.”

“She has been saying how jealous she is of me being able to take off a whole year from work, how she would have loved to not worry about losing their home, how she doesn’t even have a couple hundred dollars in her savings account, let alone a whole year’s worth of living expenses.”

“I usually ignore it, or brush it off, because I kind of can understand the stress she is under.”

“Well, starting about 10 days ago, she started hinting at not being able to afford daycare, and any mention of her husband taking care of their kid is brushed off.”

“Then she started remarking on how much free time I must have, which I deflected by saying -truthfully- that being a single mom to a baby and a small kid left me no free time actually.”

“Then last night she came out with it, and asked if I could ‘do her a favor’ and watch her kid while she’s at work.”

“I was firm, but polite, when I said that I couldn’t, that I am not capable of watching two kids under 6 months.”

“She started almost begging me, saying she can’t afford daycare, and if she is not back at work, she will lose her job, and they will end up homeless. I again brought up her husband, and she said that he was not good with kids, and isn’t capable of taking care of her kid.”

“I kept saying no, she kept pushing, until it escalated to her calling me heartless, and me telling her that it’s not my problem she chose to have a kid with a useless man.”

“Now she blocked me, I am feeling very guilty about what I said, and feeling like an AH.”


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 was in agreement that the OP was not the a**hole for clapping back at her friend.

Everyone agreed that the OP’s friend was asking way too much of the OP to care for two infants, and while some felt she could have chosen her words a bit more carefully, her friend needed to hear that she and her husband should have probably thought a bit more carefully about their situation before having a child.



“I think there were no a**holes here up to the point of her PRESSING you to do this favor, which she shouldn’t have asked for in the first place.”

“You’re exactly right that it’s not your problem that she is in this situation, and while I do think a heavy dose of empathy is important to your friendship, her having a husband who isn’t employed AND cannot contribute to the child care she needs is a problem that she needs to solve.”

“It is annoying and impractical for her to think the answer here is for you to provide child care.”

“It is dismissive of the fact that you are busy already, and you only have about 7 months remaining of the time you’ve allowed yourself to be on hiatus so it’s a short-term solution.”

“It’s too bad that she’s letting her situation cloud her judgment.”

“You are not heartless and that was an unfair response for her to have had, and inappropriate behavior all throughout this interaction.”- owls_and_cardinals

“Unless the husband is bedbound or otherwise physically incapable of work or childcare, he needs to pull his finger out of his arse and step up to parent his own child.”

“And if she isn’t going to make him, she needs to leave him and claim for child support (yes, if he’s not going to get a job, this won’t do much, but at least she’ll have one less mouth to feed).”

“Could you have said it more kindly?”

“Maybe, but she should have kept pushing when you said no.”

“You are NTA, OP.”- crazycatchemist1


“We all have been unemployed at some point or struggled for money, I get that.”

“What I don’t get is how her husband has been unemployed for almost four years.”

“Even if it’s burger flipping or Doordashing until something better comes along, he could’ve figured something out.”

“And on top of that, he’s ‘not good with kids’?”


“Maybe it was a little harsh that you called her husband useless, but he, in fact, is useless if he isn’t capable of taking care of his own baby while his wife works.”

“He needs to pick a struggle.”

“She’s mad you’re not helping her and I’m willing to bet she’s mad because you made her realize that having a baby with this useless man was a mistake on her part.”

“Either way, NTA.”

“She kept pushing, so you pushed back.”- Atlas-Rising-Up


“‘She started remarking on how much free time [OP] must have’.”


“While caring for two kids when one of them is a newborn?”

“WT actual F?”

“Can we discuss how much free time her husband has to learn how to become better with kids?”-AvtrSpirit

“Wait—her husband is at home all day, but not an option for childcare?”


“NTA regardless, but wtf.”

“Like yeah, you were fortunate enough to have an inheritance.”

“Lots of people don’t have that.”

“But how is demanding that someone else do free childcare for a young infant more reasonable than asking the non-working father of that child to look after his own baby?”

“Did they not talk about what they would do with the baby while she was pregnant?”

“That’s wild.”- Beneficial_Mix_8803


“Tell her when she’s lucky enough to have her parents die, maybe she can have a paid for house too (extreme sarcasm here).”

“She is no longer your friend and you need to set boundaries and exit this friendship.”-WhoKnewHomesteading

“You may have expressed it in a slightly harsh way, but you’re not wrong.”

“Her husband hasn’t worked for several years, they had a baby together, and yet he can’t actually do anything useful to help care for the baby.”

“She has, indeed, married a completely useless man.”

“The norm is (should be) that if one parent works, the other parent takes primary care of the kids.”

“If both parents work, hopefully they make enough to afford daycare.”

“Her crappy husband is not your problem.”

“NTA.”- _mmiggs_

As many pointed out, it’s hard to fathom how the OP’s friend felt that caring for a toddler, on her own, with a 6 year-old, would leave her with “free time”.

Nor could this friend appreciate how the OP’s “lucky” situation came through circumstances that were anything but “lucky”.

Questionable choice of words aside, one can’t help but agree with those who point out that this friend was not a very good friend.

And the OP’s life will likely be more pleasurable without her in it.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.