Isn’t it only fair that, after carrying a tiny human on their bodies for nine months and enduring the stress and pain of labor, any new mom should be entitled to first dibs when it comes to holding their baby?
One new dad says when he told attending family members he wasn’t going to let anyone hold their newborn until his wife had a chance to do so, the news didn’t go over well.
He recently shared his story on the Reddit forum “Am I the A**hole?” to see if others believed he made the right call or was being selfish.
Every mom remembers the moment they hold their newborn for the first time after waiting months to meet them and suffering through what is often a painful and long birth process. It’s easy to see why this moment stays with them forever.
A new father said that his wife had a difficult pregnancy and that the delivery would be difficult. Her husband’s wife expressed sadness before she gave birth that she would likely be the last to hold their son. In light of this, he ensured that no one else in the family held their newborn before her.
“We discussed it for a while and she admitted hating the idea of being the last to hold our son. I didn’t allow anyone in my family to hold him or even meet him when he was born while she was still unconscious, he wrote on Reddit. Thankfully, she recovered and was able to meet and hold our son after being unconscious for four days. “It was just a day after everyone else got to hold him for the first time.”
Although both their extended families were unhappy with the decision, only his mother and sister continued to contest it.
In November of this year, the man’s wife gave birth. While their families disagreed with his decision to give their baby’s mother priority over other family members regarding who cuddled the infant first, the incident did not linger – or so they thought.
In January, his wife posted a few photos on social media showing the first time she held their son. Her post describes how traumatic her pregnancy experience was, including the dangers and painful delivery, and how grateful she was that they both survived. That’s when the backlash began.
“My mom and sister started acting like kids then. “We robbed them of those first few days with their grandson/nephew,” he said. Many people meet grandkids and nieces/nephews days or even weeks or months after birth, and if this was happening in Covid times, it would not have happened for a long time. However, they said I was selfish and shouldn’t have done that just because my wife was unable to meet or hold our baby.”
According to some family members and others, the husband’s selfish decision denied them the chance to interact with the baby after his birth.
Reddit sided with whom in this case is obvious. Redditors overwhelmingly decided that the husband was not at fault.
“OP’s wife carried that baby for nine months and went through hell to give birth; she earned the right to hold him before anyone else who did not help create him.” A commenter wrote, “MIl and SIL are selfish, entitled AHs to think otherwise.”
I can’t believe anyone has to deal with this. Let me get this straight. You read my wife’s post about how difficult, scary, and traumatic her birth was, and that reminded you about how unfair it was that you weren’t able to hold him right away. Why don’t the two of us look up the word selfish together?'” wrote another.
The baby wasn’t alone
The author also addressed criticism by some family members who thought it was harmful to the child that he didn’t have more chances to be held during his first four days of life.
“OP, you held the baby those first four days, right?” Totally mistaken. They simply meant more family interaction, not “why did you leave the baby crying in the crib alone?””.”.”. Assuming they just wanted to play Pass The Baby, they’re out of their minds. [Edit: OP has since confirmed that he was most definitely cuddling the baby.]
Especially now with Covid, how do they think they have a leg to stand on? My baby was born early in the pandemic. Only half the family has even seen him in person from a distance, and only 3 of them have even held him ever.
In fact, tiny babies are easily overwhelmed, and passing them from person to person as if they needed more interaction is selfish and the opposite of what your newborn needs.
Thanks for saving those special moments for your wife. Don’t listen to those who complain.” they wrote.
“The person implying that OP denied their son early interaction conveniently ignores the fact that a baby isn’t going to remember anything. Parents (and other family members) like to believe that they’re “imprinting” on their children, but this is not the case. Good for you, OP, for standing up for your wife and her child.” wrote another.
Praise for Standing with his Wife
“Thank you for putting your partner’s wishes before all else on behalf of women/people giving birth. You did the right thing! I am so glad that this moment wasn’t stolen from you or disrupted in any way. They are so selfish and entitled. I commend you for putting them in their place and showing them that they have no rights to hold that baby. As parents, your words are final. They can all go eat an egg. NTA 1000x.” said one.
“A friend of mine had an emergency c section with her first child. It was just too exciting for her MIL to wait to come to the hospital as she had been asked explicitly to do. She was the second person to hold the baby after Dad. My friend was devastated when other people held and met her baby before she did. Her relationship with her mother-in-law was also seriously damaged. Even years later, the fact that someone else held her baby before her still bothered and hurt her. Good on you, OP. 100%. Remind your mom and sister that it’s NOT THEIR CHILD, and his mother is more important.” said another.
Thank you for reading. Would you please pass this story on to your friends and family?