Meeting your child for the first time is an incredibly emotional experience. Whether you want your adorably slimy newborn placed directly on your chest or prefer to wait for them to be swaddled and handed to you, holding your baby for the first time is like nothing else.
So when one Redditor wanted to make sure his wife was able to hold their baby before other family members after a traumatic birth, he had no idea he was starting a family conflict. Apparently, his extended family felt entitled to hold the baby before mom—and the OP was not having their complaints.
“This happened pre-Covid but the fight started again about a month and a half ago. My wife gave birth to our son November 2019. She had a very complicated pregnancy and ended up needing an emergency c-section which we were aware could happen. We had talked about it for a while, and she admitted hating the thought she would be the last to hold our son. So when he was born and she was still unconscious I did not allow anyone in our families to hold him, or even meet him really. They saw me but that was about it. She was unconscious for four days but thankfully recovered and was able to meet and hold our son. It was about a day after everyone else got to meet and hold him for the first time.”
In January, the OP’s wife put up photos of herself holding her son and also talked about how traumatic the birth had been and how grateful she was. The OP’s mom and sister then started “acting like kids” and said it “wasn’t fair and we robbed them of those first few days with their grandson/nephew.”
They called the OP selfish and said that he should not have deprived them of the chance to meet the baby “just because my wife couldn’t meet or hold our baby.” The OP says he’s only conflicted because “someone else suggested I robbed my son of having more interaction early on and I should have thought of him over my wife’s feelings on the whole thing.”
Look, pregnancy and birth and becoming a new parent is a really intimate experience, and it’s really important to respect the new parents’ wishes. What do Redditors think?
“Definitely NTA!! Of course your wife should have been the first person (besides yourself) to hold your son! Good for you for sticking to your guns,” said Joodropinn.
“OP, you held the baby those first 4 days, right? By ‘more interaction’ they simply mean ‘more random family members should have passed the baby around’ not ‘why did you make that poor baby cry in the crib all 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. Tiny babies actually get really easily overwhelmed and passing them from person to person as if they needed more interaction’ is selfish and the opposite of what your newborn needed! Thank you for saving those special moments for your wife. Don’t listen to the complainers,” said EinsTwo.
“The ‘just because’ made me gasp…..just because the woman who carried him and risked her life to give birth to him hadn’t held him yet? That’s a helluva ‘just because,’ and you’re damned right they needed to back off and wait. NTAx100,” noted crella-ann.
“NTA. Your mom and sister are acting like idiots. Your son was a newborn, he didn’t give a damn about ‘bonding’ with his grandmother and aunt and doing your best to ensure that your wife was able to have those special ‘first’ moments was an awesome act. The next time they start harping on how selfish and horrible you are, just laugh at them. ‘Yup, it’s ridiculous that I would prioritize my wife’s feelings over yours! Hah hah, I’m such an ass,'” stated Mirianda666.
‘NTA in the strongest possible terms. I cannot imagine how stressful it must have been for you to have your wife unconscious for that length of time. If anyone was robbed of those first few days with your son, it was her. You did exactly the right thing in prioritizing her holding him first over anyone else – if I was in her situation (I’m pregnant right now!) and woke up to find that everyone else had cuddled my baby before me, I’d be devastated,” said Kiwitechgirl.
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