A man with a deep fear of operating rooms struggled to support his wife during her c-section, waiting outside instead, which caused a rift between them. Here is what he had to say:
He Had Experienced Past Trauma
The man explained, “I don’t like the operating room and, at some point in my life, the hospital too. When my ex-wife had her c-section, she had a complication and hovered between life and death for a long time. It was a horrible experience to feel so helpless.”
It Remained A Big Fear Despite Therapy
Despite undergoing therapy and making progress, the fear of operating rooms remained a significant source of anxiety for him. When his ex-wife had their second child, he felt incredibly nervous about the procedure and couldn’t bring himself to enter the operating room. So he waited outside during the procedure.
His Wife Was Due To Give Birth
Later, when the man and his current wife decided to have children, he made it explicitly clear that he would support her choice of delivery, but couldn’t be in the room during a c-section. His wife decided to have a c-section but agreed to his suggestion that she should have her mother present during the c-section to provide support instead of him.
She Asked Him To Come Into The Operating Theatre
As time went on, the man’s wife stuck to her decision to have a C-section. He respected her choice but remained firm about not being present during the procedure. On the day of the surgery, his wife surprised him by asking him to come in with her.
But He Had Set His Limits
The man explained, “She asked me to come in with her because she wanted a moment of our own. I apologized but said that this was my limit and that I couldn’t. She said, “Fine, I’ll go with my mother then,” and had a crying face. I tried talking to her but to no avail, and my mother-in-law kept looking at me in disgust.”
But She Was Upset
The man felt he wouldn’t have been any help at all in the operating room, due to his anxiety, and felt it was best for everyone if he waited outside. Thankfully, everything went well, and the couple’s daughter was born healthy. The man was waiting at the exit of the operating room, eager to meet his newborn daughter and support his wife throughout the recovery process.
However, once they were alone, his wife confronted him, expressing her pain at feeling abandoned during a vulnerable time. He tried to explain his perspective, but his wife remained hurt and distant. She urged them to focus on their newborn daughter, but a rift had formed between them.
His Mother-In-Law Blamed Him
To make matters worse, the man’s mother-in-law decided to share the incident with other family members, and he was criticized for his behavior. His wife too had become distant, they avoided meaningful conversations, primarily discussing only the needs of their newborn daughter.
Was The Man In The Wrong?
He was torn, questioning if he had indeed been in the wrong. He wondered if he should have tried to put his anxiety about operating rooms to one side and been at his wife’s side while she gave birth.
The Internet Responded
One person said, “Doctors don’t want anyone in the room who is NOT helpful. Nervous, anxious, angry, confrontational—whatever will distract them, influence the patient, and take up unproductive physical space, and time. You helped in the best way you could! If helping is only getting in the way, then do it!! Your wife had someone who could be helpful. And you helped arrange that ahead of time! Kudos to you!”
Another Person Commented
“This guy knew his limits and isn’t any less of a man because he admitted his limitations. He explained to his wife why he wouldn’t be there.”
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