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Postpartum health scare threatens marriage when husband belittles wife in hospital. AITA?

Postpartum health scare threatens marriage when husband belittles wife in hospital. AITA?


"AITA for being unable to forgive my husband for yelling at me while I was in the hospital and seeing this as the nail in the coffin for our marriage?"


Following being released from the hospital after having our second baby, I was readmitted one day later due to severe preeclampsia and HELLP syndrome. Since I had a C-section just 4 days prior and had a blood pressure putting me at risk of having a stroke or seizure, I was unable to drive myself to the hospital, nor could my husband as our toddler and newborn were both sleeping.

I wanted to take an Uber, but my husband insisted on asking his parents to drive me

His parents live very close by, whereas my family is all 45+ mins away.

( Some background: Since welcoming our first child in 2021, the relationship with his parents has been very strained due to their overbearing nature and lack of boundaries— to the point we had several sessions with a family therapist to curb the behavior and mend fences.

Unfortunately, therapy didn’t help, and his parents did not continue therapy on their own as advised by the therapist. I have very limited interaction with them, and my husband's relationship is minimal and superficial.

Also to note, his parents do not have a relationship with anyone aside from their three kids— they cut off my MIL's parents, brothers/sisters several years ago due to family drama, and my FIL does not talk to his sister either for no apparent reason; both of his parents have passed.)

I begrudgingly went along with my husband's request to let them drive me to the hospital. Once we arrived at the hospital, they would not leave, insisting that they needed to stay to ‘help me’ and even pushed their way into the ER room. They finally left when I was being transferred back to the maternity unit for treatment. This was around 11 pm on a Friday.

Once admitted, I was placed on a mag bag IV drip to prevent me from seizing/having a stroke and minimize the other side effects of preeclampsia/HELLP. Because my newborn was only 4 days old, they allowed him and my husband to come to the hospital the next morning and stay with me for the few days until I was discharged.

During this time, our 2.5-year-old son went to my in-laws. By mid-Saturday morning, I received a text from my sister-in-law expressing her concern and prayers as she had heard I was back in the hospital— my in-laws had told her husband all the details of what was going on.

I found this incredibly frustrating and inappropriate as some of the historical issues we had with my in-laws stemmed from them constantly over-inserting themselves and sharing our business/gossiping.

The medical situation I was in was very serious and incredibly scary, it was not something that I feel was anyone’s ‘right’ to share but mine and my husband’s— especially given that I had only just been admitted and started treatment hours before. Tests were still being run, and the treatment plan was still being evaluated at this point.

As soon as I got the text from my sister-in-law, I expressed my frustration to my husband about his parents sharing my medical details with others— my husband agreed and was frustrated as well, so he left the room to call his parents.

He came back several minutes later and said he talked with his parents and now I should “get over it” in a very flippant manner. I pressed him, asking why his parents felt it was their place to alert others, and my husband shared a made-up story about how his brother called his parents and heard my toddler in the background and asked why he was there.

This was fabricated by either my husband or his parents because minutes later I got a text from my father-in-law saying he told my brother-in-law because ‘as a brother, he had the right to know what was going on.’

At that point, I told my husband that his parents have no discretion and are again overstepping boundaries. My husband, seemingly annoyed by the whole situation, again told me to get over it in a hostile tone and went on to say they’re old so we can’t change their behavior.

I agree with this but that doesn’t mean we should ignore and tolerate our boundaries being violated. I then said he needs to pick a side and yelling at me for their behavior was misplaced anger.

He then said that maybe he’s not the right person for me because he’s not going to push back on them about stuff like this anymore, and I need to live with it. My husband just doesn’t like his own boat being rocked so plays both sides and gets angry at me when I get upset; this is a constant in our relationship.

From my perspective, I was in the hospital for a very serious condition and didn’t feel supported by my husband even though he agreed that his parents' behavior was inappropriate.

This is compounded by the fact that we have had several similar incidents with his parents that always result in this same kind of fight. But in this particular scenario, I couldn’t believe how my husband was being so mean and unsupportive given the vulnerable and scary situation I was in.

And now I can't look at him the same or forgive him. If that’s how he treats me in such a sensitive time, is he a partner? I feel this is the straw that broke the camel's back for our marriage. AITAH for not "getting over it" now?

Here were the top rated comments from readers in response to the OP's post:


Question-why didn't anybody call an ambulance? Pre-eclampsia is life threatening and the stress of having to deal with them likely made matters WORSE. NTA.


Exactly. I’m reading this as a former OB RN, and it’s so upsetting to me. HELLP syndrome is one of the scariest things in OB. Not only were you at risk for seizures, you could have bled out at any time from low platelets, or had any number of other lethal complications. The mortality rate for HELLP syndrome can be up to 24%.

Your husband’s job was to be supportive and promote a calm, peaceful environment to keep your BP down. Clearly, he was unable to be supportive to you, and to push back against his parents, in a literal life-or-death situation. It would be completely understandable if that were the line in the sand for you in this relationship.


NTA he already told you, he’s not the right person for you because he’s not going to push back on them. This was a scary time for you and he should have had your back.


Good God. I cannot imagine treating my hospitalized wife this way. What an absolute fucking douchebag. NTA.


I'm a little confused, because while I understand you feeling violated and exposed, because of your history with them, I'm also getting some bitch eating crackers vibes here. This was a serious, terrifying medical issue happening. That KILLS people. What if you had died?

"Oh her? She died. Got sick. Ended up in hospital. Didn't work out, though, and she died. Sure, we could have used help and support and sympathy ourselves, since we were facing the idea of what our son's life look like.

What about our grandchildren, what would need to do, to provide, if the worst should happen... It was a terrible time for her, for our son, for the kids, and even for us, but we didn't want her to think we were overstepping"

You didn't get sick in a vacuum. They didn't post about it on Facebook for likes. They didn't tell Greta at the Grocery store. They told their other son. I get the relationship ain't good, but they didn't put you on public thoughts and prayers blast at church and they stepped up for your older son.

They told a close family member they could reasonably have expected to already know and to be able to provide support to THEM. They didn't violate the ring theory of tragedy.

I dunno. Maybe I'm biased because I've got a furious hatred of the idea that you shouldn't tell anyone you're pregnant too early since that would mean you have love, understanding and support if anything goes wrong as opposed to silently suffering in secret.

In my view it's not like they told your extended IL clan that you had a yeast infection, they shared that you were seriously ill, hospitalized, and might die. That's the sort of "private medical info" that isn't private at all.

So, what do you think about this one? If you could give the OP any advice here, what would you tell them?

Sources: Reddit
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