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Woman creates 7 strict rules around the birth of her first child. AITA? MAJOR UPDATE.

Woman creates 7 strict rules around the birth of her first child. AITA? MAJOR UPDATE.


When this woman is extremely strict with her birth boundaries, she asks Reddit:

"Am I wrong for having some strict boundaries around the birth of my first child?"

I (26F) am pregnant with my first child and he’s due to arrive in mid October. My husband (26M) and I are really excited but also quite nervous as I’m sure a lot of first time parents are.

We’ve talked a lot about what we want our experience to be like once I go into labor and what boundaries we want to set with family and close friends for the early postpartum period after our son has been born.

I’ve been really anxious about how people will take the news and if anyone is going to try and test our boundaries (I’m a recovering people pleaser so I find setting firm boundaries with my family is especially difficult but my husband has no problems being assertive)...

and we decided we’d tell our families our initial boundaries ahead of time so everyone had time to absorb them and set their expectations accordingly.

And now, OP's list of rules:

1. We don’t want any visitors in the hospital. We aren’t sure how the delivery will go and I don’t feel comfortable with anyone besides my husband and maybe my Mom in the room if I need her. Once baby boy is born we also want to be able to just focus on him and soak up being a family of 3.

2. We aren’t sure when we’re going to be ready for visitors once we’re released from the hospital, but have told people they can expect anywhere from 2 days - 2 weeks and we’ll reach out when we’re ready.

3. If you’re sick or have cold/flu symptoms we don’t want you coming to visit us until all your symptoms have resolved because newborns have poor immune systems and a cold that could take you out for a day or two could kill our baby.

4. Before our son gets his first round of shots at 2 months, we’re asking that anyone meeting him also has gotten their flu shot. Being an October baby born right in the thick of flu season is just something that terrifies us.

5. Please don’t kiss our baby.

6. We might not be ready to pass our baby around when we do have visitors.

7. If we do feel comfortable letting others hold baby boy, please give him back to one of his parents if he starts crying.

Before we provide OP's major update, let's take a look at some of this post's top responses:

jakestretcher writes:

You are definitely entitled to your boundaries. I am a little confused. If you may need your mom, will she be in the waiting room for just in case? If you do need her will she get to spend time with the baby once it’s born or does she have to immediately leave?

Will your mom have to be vaccinated prior to your due date or does she get a pass? Will your mom help you when released from the hospital at home? Did your husband come up with some of these boundaries or is he just going along?

I’m just curious how I made it this far in life without my parents having these boundaries when I was born. I wish you luck and definitely update us over the next few months on how everything played out.

iamaware writes:

1 is unfair and you know it. (Well I think you should) It always baffles me how many mother to be can think of themselves and the baby but forget that hubby/partner just with a single swoop.

He has to see his partner/wife endure agony and can’t do shit to help and then poof he is a dad supposed to be doing all kinds of shit …. Who the f is his support system, maybe he wants/needs his mommy.

2 Don’t call people , don’t send out the cards , wait out those days!!! Don’t show people we have something for you to see but you can’t… it’s like telling a toddler this here is your Christmas gift but you can’t open it now it’s only Halloween yet.

( it’s unclear when it will happen) or send out a card with a hosting date, we like to host you then. So you are in charge of the agenda instead of them.

3 sick people showing up to a baby viewing… those are idiots and should be called out.

4 there will be a shit to. More terrifying, like I loved when my baby got a bit of a runny:stuffy nose… I could actually hear them breath. They were so damn quite it was scaring me more.

5 you would think that ons a non issue but …….. good luck it way to hard to enforce (do make it a rule can’t kid the baby with chap/lipstick on) their head /faces are still smushy and can’t be scrubbed.

6 is a thing people did agree on. We did do it… and ours handled themselves amazingly , but i have seen all four sides happen. (We usually invited the bigger groups , when we didn’t pass around the kid , at a time she sleeps, just tell them not to be pick up a sleeping baby, and just before you wanted them out and gone for a feeding. )

7 figure out what the cries are before snatching the baby out of someone’s hand. There are like four distinct cries you can figure out. It will help you mellow out a bit. ( mine only cried / screamed at men with longer hair, we have not many of those in our friend group) .

But in the end . You are the parents. You make the rules. Just be kind, speak your boundaries, and be on the same page. It’s not a my way or a highway kind of thing if kom and dad can’t really be on the same page.

Take it day by day. And the best thing for advice especially the unsolicited kind. Have them write it down, say it a pregnancy thing that you can’t remember what they said as soon as they walk out the door. ( other wise smart asses might test you on it. )

it might not seem useful now but you will have a shit ton of advise because no kid is the same and you can have a laugh at the ones that were shit when you tried, or are too stupid for words or thank someone for great advice once you were in a pickle. Also nice to chive to your kid later when they say they your going to be a grand parent.

owlsowl writes:

I’m going to get downvoted to oblivion- but I think it is wrong to not invite the grandparents to the hospital - particularly the grandmothers. (This only applies to parents who were good to their kids and not to emotionally or physically abusive parents).

I definitely don’t think they should be in the delivery room, and OP sets the bounds on that, but there is no reason for OP to be stressed if they are in the hospital’s waiting area.

OP’s mother gave birth to her. She went through everything that OP is going through. I think it is unkind, and even cruel, to treat one’s parents in such an exclusionary fashion when the grandparents birthed and raised OP.

Definitely set boundaries to protect to health of the baby. Limit hospital visits to only grandparents. To tell grandparents, who sacrificed so much to birth and raise OP though that they are not welcomed at the hospital for her child’s birth is just plain wrong.

ajm7 writes:

This all sounds very reasonable. I have two nephews and of course couldn't wait to meet them. My first nephew I didn't meet until he was two weeks old, obviously didn't kiss him because that would be dumb.

My second nephew I met when he was two days old but I didn't hold him, I didn't actually get to hold him until the third time I met him.

People like to make the birth of a baby all about them instead of remembering it's about the parents and the baby.

If you get any push back, just say to them "I understand and appreciate your feelings, but your wants are less important than our needs. We're very excited for you to meet baby as soon as we're ready." Good luck!

And now, OP's final update:

We’ve had some pushback already mostly about when people can visit us (especially our immediate family) and the flu shot thing. I’m completely respectful of anyone who is uncomfortable getting a flu shot...

I’ve just said it’s totally fine and we can have a visit after baby boy gets his 2 month shots but that hasn’t gone over very well. Am I wrong for setting these boundaries? Am I being unreasonable?

Edit: thanks for everyone’s opinions, it’s making me feel a lot more sure of the boundaries we’re wanting to enforce. The TDAP vaccine (includes whooping cough aka pertussis) has come up a lot in the comments.

I’ve had my TDAP booster this pregnancy as recommended by my midwife so hopefully will pass on some antibodies to my baby.

My husband’s TDAP is up to date and at the midwife’s recommendation we’ve just been asking people who will be around a lot if they’re due for a booster and if so, to get one. Most people have been pretty good about it so far.

Edit 2: I really didn’t expect this post to get so much traction but I’m really thankful for everyone chiming in with their two cents. Overall it’s making me feel pretty good about the boundaries we’re wanting to set.

Also, just because it’s coming up a lot because I made my last edit after like 50 comments because that felt like a lot - we aren’t sending this list out to people in a mass email or text, we’re talking to people individually and some of the things on the list (like don’t kiss baby, give baby back if they’re crying).

are things we are planning on mentioning at the time of everyone’s first visit when they show up. We think sending people a list is off putting and it will go over better in a conversation that we can adapt how we present the info for whoever we’re talking to. In terms of visitors at the hospital and at home...

maybe I didn’t make it really clear which is on me - but we aren’t saying that’s 100% what’s going to happen and there’s no room for change.

We are telling people ahead of time and presenting it mostly like “hey, we aren’t sure yet but right now we’re thinking we don’t want any visitors at the hospital.

If we do want visitors we’ll call you!” And same goes for visitors at home - this will be our first child and we have no idea what to expect ourselves. We could totally want people to be around and visiting, or we could want 2 weeks of space...

I’ve struggled with anxiety since before I got pregnant and it’s been worse since becoming pregnant, especially about baby getting sick in the first few months because of how dangerous it is...

we decided to set it at 2 months as that should take us to Christmas and we’re going to re-evaluate how we feel then and may extend.

I plan on breastfeeding though so when I get the flu shot my body will actually pass on the antibodies through my breast milk to my baby and give them some protection. I got a TDAP booster recently as well to pass antibodies to baby in utero as well.

we just think it might be an easier pill for our family to swallow if they have a heads up that it’s a possibility instead of them expecting they can visit right away and then being told no we need time. Anyways, thanks to everyone and maybe I’ll update after my son is born!

Looks like OP is NTA here. Any advice for her?

Sources: Reddit
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