What started as a well-intentioned white lie has snowballed into a storm for one new father.
In a recent post on Reddit, user u/throwawaywifehatesme shared the story that he and his mother lied to his wife about small baby firsts in an attempt to help her adjust to working long hours as she completes her residency. According to the user, she’s gone for days on end, which means she will probably miss a few firsts. So, in an attempt to protect her from the guilt of missing out, he and his mother withheld some information.
It all started with the baby rolling over for the first time. According to him, the wife just missed the event, so the grandmother thought quickly and rolled the baby back over, telling the young mom it looked like it was about to happen.
“My wife was elated,” he wrote. “She was so worried and guilty about not being there and she took it as proof that she can still be a present mother while working.”
Then, he got strategic. Instead of having every big moment occur when she’s present, he’d pick and choose what to tell her. According to him, some instances worked out nicely, like the baby’s first crawl took place while she was around. Yet other moments, like the baby’s first steps, happened during a stretch where the young mother was away while the baby was awake.
Moments like that were kept a secret until she noticed a video on the grandmother’s cellphone she hadn’t seen yet. After some convincing, the mother-in-law cracked and showed her the video of the baby saying bye to some ducks, something she thought she was present for. That’s when she put everything together. The post really took off on Reddit, with many users giving their take, but most of them carried the same sentiment. Despite his good intentions, a lie is a lie, and that would hurt.
Aside from the realization that she’s been lied to, for the mother, there were definitely feelings of missing out, and that’s common for many women. In fact, the New York Times recently reported that women are facing more pressure to breastfeed and keep more of an eye on their baby among other things. All of this is happening while more women are obtaining college degrees and working the same number of hours as women in the 1990s.
With all that in mind, it’s understandable for a mom who is facing these increased pressures to feel as though she’s missed out. That doesn’t excuse the actions of the father, but hopefully, the couple can work out the issues they may have while they raise a baby together.