Picture this: you are a new mom. You are home watching your 2-month-old baby, alone. You are getting no sleep, you have no help, and your husband works long hours out of the house while you do 100% of childcare duties. Now imagine all that — times three. Triplet newborns? My anxiety spikes just thinking about it! But this situation is a reality for one mom on Reddit, who recently wrote about the coping method she uses when the crying thrice reaches a crescendo — and she can feel herself reaching her breaking point. Everything was fine until her husband caught her and ridiculously over-reacted.
“I (20) am a mother of triplets whom are only 2 months old. I never expected ever in my life that I’d be a mother to triplets so when I first became pregnant it was definitely the last thing in my mind,” she wrote in the “Am I The A—hole?” subreddit. Triplets would absolutely leave me reeling, so I can totally relate to this.
She went on, “I’m home with my babies all day long and had to even transfer my education to online. Sometimes I just need some fresh air especially when I can’t get them to stop crying and I find myself getting super frustrated to the point of tears, it’s honestly soo hard and the dad isn’t here to help as he’s ether at work or at school.”
Poor girl! She sounds overwhelmed and exhausted, and my heart breaks for her. She not only was ushered into the realm of motherhood at triple the rate most people are, but she also had to give up her school (and I’m guessing social life) and transition to a full-time stay-at-home-mom position — while trying to fit in her classwork somehow.
So when she needs a break, this mom simply takes a step outside.
“My fiance’s (24) parents rented us a main floor apartment so when I step outside I’m literally just sitting on the chair right beside the door,” she explained. “Plus I have a baby monitor step up in their room and it has a camera on it I can literally see them and hear them so if anything happened I’d be able to quickly get to them.”
I don’t know a mom who hasn’t done something similar. I know I have definitely had to walk away from a screaming infant a time or two. There’s only so much you can do if your baby is fed, clean, and safe. Sometimes you need to go outside and scream so you don’t scream at them. Or have a few moments alone to meditate — or cry! — in private!
“Being able to step outside for a few minutes to take a breather is really important to me because I start to have mini panic attacks when I can’t get them to stop crying and I get really frustrated because I just feel super overwhelmed,” the mom continued. “Being able to go outside just gives me a chance to clam down.”
For the record, the Mayo Clinic says it’s perfectly fine to put your baby safely in the crib and leave the room for a 10- to 15-minute break if you are feeling overwhelmed. It’s so much better for your baby to have a calm parent then a parent who is stressed to the breaking point.
Unfortunately, her husband didn’t agree.
“My fiance came home to me sitting outside while the babies were crying and freaked out on me calling me a horrible mom and a bunch of other names that I’m not gonna list here,” she wrote. “He thinks that I was being super neglectful and putting the babies in harm way and even told his parents and now everyone seem to be really against me.”
WTF, man? Imagine coming home to your wife deep-breathing outside as your newborn triplets are crying inside and doing anything other than giving her a hug and telling her to go for a drive to clear her head while you take over. No, this pathetic excuse for a dad instead yells at her, turning a stressful situation a million times worse, jumping to conclusions, and tries to get his parents to gang up on her, too?
It gets worse. Apparently, the fiancé and his family are this mom’s only support system.
“I grow up in the system my fiance’s family is the only family I have and ever known so it breaks my hurt that they are so upset with me,” she continued. “But I really don’t think I was doing anything wrong or putting my babies in harm way but they seems to think otherwise. So here I am wondering if I should apologize for my actions or if I am the A-hole in this situation.”
I wish I could reach out and give her a hug. This is just so sad! She feels like she did nothing wrong — because she absolutely didn’t! — but her husband and the only family she’s ever known is yelling abusive words at her because she needed a break.
Do you have to deal with crying all day in your job, sir? Do you get a break, ever? That’s what I thought.
For his rude behavior and completely toxic reaction, Reddit sentenced him to (at least!) a 12-hour shift watching the triplets alone. Then, we’ll see how judgy you are.
“Maybe Dad needs to stay home.with the babies by himself for about 12 hours just to see what it’s like for OP. And see how long it takes for him to need a break,” one person wrote.
Someone else said, “I did this to my ex husband. With 1 baby granted. Went to mothers house and slept 15 hours. I came home he had a completely different attitude. And helped a lot more.”
Another said, “NTA. When I had my baby one of the things the nurses told me repetitively while in hospital and during the home visits is that if she is crying and I know she has been fed, she has a clean nappy on and she isn’t sick and I am getting stressed out its ok to go outside for a few minutes to just recollect myself. Their exact words were ‘a crying baby is an alive baby.’”
They added, “They tell you this because it is better for a baby to be left to cry for a little while and the parents to get a breather, than for parents to wig out and hurt their babies in frustration. This advice was so important. It allowed me to do what I needed to do without feeling guilty. And those few minutes really do help in those times when they won’t settle. And I had one, let alone if I had three.”
“This is the way. Dad came home to three crying alive babies,” someone else pointed out. “You were with them all day and kept them fed and clean, and you had a monitor on them while just feet away from them. You are a tired, amazing, NTA mom of these babies. Carry on, momma.” Yes, yes, YES! I hope OP is reading these comments because I couldn’t agree more. This superhero mom is doing amazing, and I hate that anyone (especially her husband!) makes her feel like she isn’t.
Someone else said, “I mean that’s the real question for me here: all these people who presumably care about these babies need to come on over and help. Two months old is still an extremely needy age, and playing 1-on-3 is a losing ratio. Some of these other adults should be pitching in if at all possible.”
“NTA – What you’re doing is preventing shaken baby syndrome,” one person pointed out.” When the caregiver is overwhelmed, you need to step away for a few minutes to collect yourself and breathe. Center yourself, calm down, do what you need to do. You’d only be an AH if you left them alone for long stretches of time, but it sounds like you only do it for short periods and monitor them when you do so. Nothing wrong with that. What does your fiancé do to help with the babies?”
She responded, writing, “Not really as when he comes home he’s really tired I do over 90% of the child care since they were born. He maybe will change a diaper once in while.” OMFG. My blood is boiling. This man doesn’t deserve to kiss the bottom of his wife’s shoe, he’s so disgusting. He never helps her, ever?! And he has the nerve to tell her she’s being neglectful? Give me a break.
“I can’t believe you haven’t killed him yet. Aren’t you tired too?” one person said. “You need to leave him with the babies and make him step up.”
“I just thought it was normal, so I didn’t get mad at him I just thought I was failing at the whole parenting thing,” the mom responded. “I was put in the system when I was 3 so I don’t remember how family dynamics are supposed to be. I think I’d be pretty anxious to leave him alone with all the babies because I don’t think he’d be able to handle it. Maybe I should get him to take parenting classes or something.”
Another person pointed out: “The fact that you dont trust him alone with his own children means he is failing. He needs to step up BIG TIME. When he gets home, you guys split things 50/50, even at night.”
This is so frustrating! This young mom is overworked, overtired, and quickly reaching her breaking point. She needs a nanny and a nap, ASAP! And her A—hole fiancé needs a reality check about how hard it is to take care of newborns (especially three at once!).
Before you go, check out these unbelievable stories about Reddit’s worst dads.