People are assuring a woman that her angry reaction was justified after she revealed that she yelled at her husband during a New Year’s Eve celebration with his family because he joked about her “traumatic” birthing experience.
The new mother described the incident on Reddit’s AITA [Am I The A**hole] subreddit, where she questioned whether she was wrong to fight with her husband “in front of his family during a NYE celebration after he joked about my birth experience”.
In the post, the 25-year-old woman explained that she gave birth to the couple’s daughter a few weeks ago, and that, because it was her first child, she hadn’t known what to expect and the experience had been “pretty traumatic”.
“When I went into labour I had the most difficult time of my life, I was in pain for hours. My mom was with me but she had to go and my husband was with me the entire time,” the woman recalled, continuing: “I did something so embarrassing in the delivery room, I pooped myself which was unexpected and just...I don’t know but it was embarrassing.”
According to the OP [original poster], her medical team handled the incident professionally, however, her husband “started laughing about it later” and even began telling his wife’s family, who “just didn’t find it funny and neither did I”.
“In fact, I found it embarrassing and I already told him to stop bringing it up especially when he started joking about getting me diapers for my ‘opsies!!’” the new mother continued, adding that her husband’s comments “got really tiring and chipped away from my self esteem and confidence”.
In the post, the woman then revealed that the comments grew into a fight during a New Year’s Eve celebration with her husband’s parents after she had excused herself to go to the bathroom.
“While I was getting up he made a quick remark and said: ‘Oh yeah, you should go quickly because we don’t want any accidents just like the one we had at the hospital, you know what I mean?’” she recalled, adding that her husband’s family laughed and her brother-in-law responded: “Good one!”
According to the woman, the comment made her “so angry and ashamed” that she screamed at her husband for “using the difficult experience of birthing his child as a joking matter” and humiliating her.
“I was astonished and so angry and ashamed, I literally just lost it on him and yelled at the top of my lungs calling him a cruel insensitive jerk for using the difficult experience of birthing his child as a joking matter and humiliating me in front of everybody,” she wrote, recalling how her husband had been “shocked” and had not said a word in response.
However, when it was time for the couple to leave, the new mother, who said that she spent the rest of the visit in the bathroom, said that her husband reacted angrily to her outburst and claimed that she had “messed up by talking to him like that in front of his family during dinner”.
The Reddit user also said her husband claimed that he was just joking, and that her reaction had been “overboard,” before telling his wife that she should have waited until they had gotten home to address the matter.
“We argued about it after we got home and he kept saying I humiliated him in front of his family during the celebratory evening by being petty and trying to one up him... He even said I should’ve laughed along and not flown off the handle like that,” she concluded, before asking: “Did I overreact?”
Since she shared the story on Sunday, the post has been upvoted more than 23,000 times, with thousands of Reddit users weighing in.
According to the majority of comments, the woman was not the one who was wrong in the situation, as many have claimed that her husband is the one who should be apologising.
“NTA [not the a**hole] what the hell? So he can humiliate you by ‘joking’ in front of his entire family about a deeply private, personal and traumatic experience that you have ALREADY ASKED HIM to stop making remarks about, but if you call him out on it in front of those same people, somehow you’re at fault,” one person wrote. “His idea of ‘not embarrassing him’ is pretending your feelings don’t exist even when he deliberately embarrassed you, just so he doesn’t have to lose face by being held accountable for his crappy treatment of you.
“Absolutely the f*** not. He is one billion per cent in the wrong, and the fact that he thinks he can ignore your feelings about this entire situation because he’s ‘just joking’ is ridiculous and pathetic. What is he, 12 years old? He’s supposed to be a husband to you and a father to the child that YOU brought into the world - if this is the best he can do, he already sucks at both. The lack of consideration shown for your feelings is astonishing. You owe him not one single scrap of an apology.”
Another person said: “There’s no excuse for ridiculing your spouse like this, especially just after giving birth and the associated trauma. Being mean isn’t funny, he needs to grow the f up.”
Countless other Reddit users took the opportunity to point out that bowel movements are a common - and normal - part of giving birth, and that the OP should not feel embarrassed or ashamed by the incident.
“OP, both of you need to know that poop happens during pretty much every birth experience. It is not humiliating. It is not an ‘oopsie.’ It is the natural result of a bowling ball rolling over one’s colon on its way out of their body. It is part of the process,” someone else said.
Another person suggested that the OP’s husband is an “immature, insensitive idiot” and that she “absolutely did not overreact”. “Most women I know pooped themselves during birth. Your husband needs to grow up,” they added.
“I can’t believe your husband would make fun of this,” another person wrote. “He sounds really unsupportive if he didnt do the modicum of research required to know this is totally normal and expected as a possibility.”
Ultimately, the post prompted many to conclude that the woman’s husband was in the wrong for his behaviour and for repeatedly mocking his wife for “something very human that happened during one of the most vulnerable moments in a woman’s life”.
“You were not humiliating him when you yelled back - you were reacting to his humiliation of you. He is not the injured party. You are,” one person concluded.
According to Marie Bigelow, a staff doula at Boise Women’s Health & Birth Center in Idaho who spoke to Parents, bowel movements are very common during labour because the “same muscles that you engage when you’re having a bowel movement are the same ones you use when you’re pushing” - and there is also the extra pressure on the colon and rectum from the weight of the baby as it moves through the birth canal.
While speaking with the outlet, Dr Jason James, MD, chairman of the ob-gyn department at Baptist Hospital of Miami, also noted that health professionals are “very accustomed” to it happening, and that patients shouldn’t worry about the possibility.
“A lot of my patients have this fear,” he said. “But they should all know that, as an obstetrician, I’m very accustomed to patients moving their bowels while pushing - and it doesn’t bother me at all. It’s just a fact of life and part of the whole process.”
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