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Dad doesn't let 9-year-old daughters stay with him during first week with newborn son.

Dad doesn't let 9-year-old daughters stay with him during first week with newborn son.


Giving birth to a new baby is a stressful endeavor.

Simply managing the sleep schedule of a newborn is enough to drain any adult on its own, but when you bring other children into the picture, as well as the daily responsibilities of work and surviving.

This is to say, it's fairly common for conflict to break out during such a high-stress time.

One dad took said conflict to the AITA subreddit, asking if he was wrong for not taking his older daughters in during the first week with his newborn.

He wrote:

AITA for not taking my daughters when my ex gave birth?

My ex-wife (Emma) and my wife (Lara) were pregnant around the same time. Lara was about 10 weeks ahead of Emma. In November, Lara gave birth to our son a few days after his due date.

Three days after he and Lara came home, I received a panicked call from my SIL asking if I could take my daughters (9F twins) as Emma had been taken to hospital the night before and was being taken for a c-section.

SIL and my brother had taken the girls in overnight but weren’t able to take them for long due to lack of space as they have 4 children themselves.

SIL said that Emma was looking at a minimum of 5 days in the hospital and then the baby would need to stay in hospital for a while. The baby came home just before Christmas.

I told my SIL that we couldn’t take the girls because we had just had our son and we were wanting to spend the time just bonding as a family of three. SIL angrily told me that having my new son didn’t cancel out the fact I already had two daughters.

I apologized and told her that I couldn’t take them in right now but I would send her some money to help out while they have the girls.

If we hadn’t just brought him home, I would have taken the girls in but Lara and I had already decided that we didn’t want any guests for the first few weeks and I had told Emma this.

While Emma was in the hospital, the girls stayed with SIL and my brother another night before they went to stay with Emma’s husband’s parents.

While the baby was in the hospital, because Emma and her husband were spending most of their time at the hospital, they were cared for a lot by Emma’s in-laws or my SIL and brother.

After a week or so, Lara and I offered to take the girls but they told us they didn’t want to stay because we were more focused on our son. It did feel like they were just parroting what they had heard from the adults around them.

Though admittedly with the sleepless nights I did forget some things such as the video call with the girls.

After the baby came home and everything settled down with Emma, she sent me a long email in the middle of the night explaining that she was disappointed in my actions.

She thought that I would see this is a medical emergency and I wouldn’t need to be asked to take them in.

I told her that we had just had a son and I had to think about his needs as well, especially when there were plenty of people around them to care for them.

Emma’s told me that any communication is to now go through the lawyer because she’s fed up of dealing with me and is going to take me to court to get full custody instead of 50/50.

I didn’t think it was unreasonable to not take them in given we had just had a baby. Lara wants me to fix it as we can’t afford my child maintenance more than doubling if Emma gets full custody. AITA for not taking my daughters in?

Edit: My SIL and brother live in a small three-bedroom house, having my daughters there as well meant that they were struggling more than usual for space. I don't blame them for trying for not being able to take them full time.

They are saving up for a bigger house. Don't get me wrong, I love my daughters. I cherish the time I get with them, if I lost custody I know Emma wouldn't allow me to get to see them.

She had wanted full custody when we divorced, but I fought for 50/50. She was angry about the divorce.

People quickly shared their hot takes.

KimChiDiva wrote:

'We were wanting to spend the time just bonding as a family of three.'

...but you're a family of five. YTA.

GoldenGoof19 wrote:

YTA. I couldn’t even finish reading this. The words “taken the girls in” and “guests” did me in. They’re your responsibility. Yours. Not SIL’s. They’re literally YOUR children. So you can’t “take them in” because they literally belong to you.

And they aren’t guests because they literally share your DNA you AH. I honestly can’t believe you would pass up the time to have all three of your children bond together early. You know… your baby’s LITERAL SISTERS. Grow up.

Slimjimshorty_ wrote:

YTA. Did you just call your DAUGHTERS guests?

kathyackerman9 wrote:

(Facepalm) Dude, you are SUCH an AH that I can't even begin to tell you all the reasons. But here goes:

Those were YOUR CHILDREN that you were casually passing off to anyone who would take them. You can't duck your responsibility to them.

Don't you think your girls should have the ability to bond with their little brother too?

You are more worried about your child support payments than your children's welfare?

Your assumption that your girls refused to see you because they were parroting what they heard is SO f** dismissive of their feelings. Good lord. Argh!!!!!

we were wanting to spend the time just bonding as a family of three.

Ok-Aardvark-6742 wrote:

That right there. YTA. You also just handed your ex the ammo to take you to court to revise custody. You are not a family of three. You are a family of five.

And 9 years old is old enough to take care of a lot of basic needs with minimal supervision.

You don’t need your eyes on a 9-year-old 100% of the time like you would a younger child, it’s entirely possible to get the 9-year-olds quickly settled with a meal or an activity and tend to your wife and baby.

9 years old is plenty old enough to remember that dad chose the new baby over me. That feeling is going to stick with them for years. And Lara should want to “fix it” because you fractured your family, not because of the money.

She’s an AH for that too.

ka-ka-ka-katie1123 wrote:

INFO: if you and Lara have a second child together, will you send your son to stay somewhere else for a few weeks so you can bond as a family with the new baby?

Clearly, no one is drinking OP's kool-aid on this thread.

Sources: Reddit
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