Dad Worried He ‘Ruined Christmas’ By Making His Family Leave When They Just Wanted To Meet His Newborn Son

Listening to people's boundaries matters, even on Christmas.

mom, dad and baby on Christmas William Fortunato / Pexels 

The holidays can be a stressful time, and when you add family pressure into the mix, they often become even harder to navigate. A first-time dad wrote to the r/AITA subreddit wondering if he was wrong for his strict reaction to his family’s wishes during the holiday season.

The dad was worried he ‘ruined Christmas’ by not allowing his family to meet his newborn son.

He explained, “Being a dad is still new for me and it’s really overwhelming,” especially because his son’s mom was in an accident, so all the newborn care was left to him for a week. He described how he was running on little to no sleep, due to being the point person for feeding and changing while his ex recovered. 


His exhaustion was so deep that he decided to skip his family’s Christmas celebration, in part because he felt like the event would be too overwhelming for his baby. The dad shared that he and his baby’s mom agreed that it was too early in their son's life for him to meet any extended family.

dad worried ruined christmas making family leave meet newborn sonPhoto: Anura_dsgn / Shutterstock 


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Yet the dad noted that despite having set that boundary with his family, his own mother put pressure on him to introduce the baby. When Christmas day arrived, his mom ramped up that pressure, trying to get him to change his mind and come over to celebrate, yet still, the new dad declined.



Much to his chagrin, his mom showed up at his house right after he got his baby down for a nap, accompanied by uncles, aunts and four of his cousins. The dad said they were being super loud, to the point where he was worried they’d wake his son up, and kept pushing him to let them inside.


After his family tried to surprise him at Christmas to meet his new baby, the ‘super cranky’ dad told them to leave.

“They think I ruined Christmas because all they were trying to do was surprise me and meet my baby,” he explained. “I’m tired so [of course] I don’t feel like what I did was wrong.”

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People in the comments wholeheartedly agreed that the dad was in the right for sticking to his convictions, and it was his family who behaved poorly by trying to overstep his clearly delineated boundaries.



“They knew with absolute certainty that you did not want to expose the baby to anyone but they showed up in person and tried to corner you into giving them what they wanted,” analyzed one person. “Showing up when told not to isn’t being cute or fun or caring or supportive, it is being manipulative and selfish.”


Someone else noted, “You didn't ruin Christmas, they ruined it for themselves with their entitled behavior.”

Others wondered why common courtesy seems to disappear in the midst of welcoming a new baby to the world, especially when it’s a moment in time when people’s wishes should be respected most. It seems as though the man's family centered their own wishes over what he needed, and tried to take advantage of him by crossing his well-established boundaries.

The overwhelming consensus was that the dad wasn’t at all wrong for refusing his family’s Christmas surprise. Just because it was a holiday, didn’t mean his family could just ignore the regulations he and his son’s mom set for their new baby.


As this dad's experience shows, sticking to your boundaries when someone tries to push past them isn't easy, yet it remains the right thing to do.

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers parenting, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.