'Special Treatment': New Mom Dragged for Bringing Baby to Childfree Wedding

A new mom is being criticized for bringing her baby to a childfree wedding, because she didn't trust the babysitter her cousins hired to mind the kids.

The new mom, u/babyweddingthrowaway, posted her story to the popular r/AmITheA**hole Reddit forum. She earned over 4,000 upvotes; 2,800 comments and a heaping helping of scorn for her post, "[Am I the A**hole] for bringing my baby to a child-free wedding?"

She explains that her cousin lives six hours away from the rest of her family. He was getting married, so his family members all made the drive to the wedding. However, it was understood that the wedding was to be childfree, simply due to the lack of space available.

"My baby was 10 months old at the time and I wasn't comfortable leaving him alone in an unfamiliar place with a stranger, which was a babysitter that my other cousins hired for their own kids. So I decided to bring him to the wedding," the original poster (OP) wrote, adding that she wrote on the RSVP about her plans, clarifying that she'd cover the infant's food.

Since u/babyweddingthrowaway didn't hear anything back, she assumed that this was fine. The baby sat on her lap during the ceremony, and though he started to cry, she removed him from the room to not interrupt further. The baby also stayed with her during the reception in a baby sling. Again, she thought everything was fine as the baby didn't act up.

But after the wedding, her aunt called her rude for bringing the baby—and when she was told about the RSVP, she said that the bride and groom did indeed have a problem, but decided not to push back.

"The bride didn't want to start any drama because she doesn't know me well," u/babyweddingthrowaway wrote.

Her aunt also mentioned that another cousin had an even younger infant—a 7-month-old—and there was no issue leaving the child with the babysitter. In addition, some of her other cousins with small children were irritated with the groom, believing he'd given the OP special dispensation to have her child with her while everyone else had to use a babysitter.

wedding baby childfree new mother mom aita
A new mom is being dragged for bringing her baby to a wedding that was explicitly supposed to be childfree—because she didn't trust the babysitter that was provided. iStock/Getty

Even when a wedding isn't explicitly childfree, the question on whether or not to bring a baby is controversial—and not just for worries about interrupting the wedding. A baby doesn't get vaccinated until after the first two months, according to parenting site Romper, and so bringing a baby this young to a wedding can be dangerous and make them sick. Romper recommends waiting until six or eight weeks at the soonest to bring a baby to an event like a wedding—though waiting at least six months, after the child's eligible for a flu shot, is preferred.

The OP's baby, being 10-months-old, is likely cleared for a big event health-wise, but even then, it's still not always the ideal move. Writing for PhillyVoice, Katie Gagnon recommends taking a baby to the church, but not the reception—and even then, only if the bride and groom are allowing children. At another event, Gagnon says another parent hired babysitters—and though, like OP, she was initially apprehensive about leaving her child with a stranger, it worked out well for both parents and child.

Though the OP likely went to the Reddit looking for validation, she did not receive it in the comments.

"[You're the A**hole] - your baby literally did the thing that the bride/groom wanted to avoid - disrupt the ceremony. You had plenty of time to find a babysitter or other family member to watch your kid while you went to the wedding but decided that you were just above the rules," u/brainybae wrote in the top-rated comment, earning 16,400 upvotes.

"Or, if you're really not comfortable leaving your baby with a sitter, just...don't go to the wedding. Staying home is always an option," u/HiramMcDaniels9 added.

"Yeah, and I don't think penciling it in to the RSVP is good enough either. If you think your cousin really wants you there, you literally call them up and have a frank discussion to figure out if it's really OK for you to violate the [childfree] aspect for both bride and groom. If not and you don't have a sitter, stay home," u/avelak wrote. "[You're the A**hole]"

"I told everyone my wedding was child free. I even had friends stationed at the front in case people brought their children to direct them to free babysitters - I knew people would try and go around it. And still someone brought a baby in and sat in the back because their baby 'would be fine'. We barely even knew this person. You can hear this damn baby crying on my video and it p**ses me off 24 years later every time I think about it," u/soonernotlater1015 shared. "[You're the A**hole]."

"People like you get on my nerves. Child free means child free. You do not get to change the rules of someone's wedding because you didnt want a babysitter. It's very entitled. [You're the A**hole]," u/Agreeable-Owl-6269 wrote.

"[You're the A**hole]. 'Don't bring a baby' 'okay I will,'" u/shnanogans wrote.

Newsweek reached out to u/babyweddingthrowaway for comment.