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Clitoral Stimulation During Labor?

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 
I am 35 weeks pregnant with my second child and am hoping to have a natural labor. (We wanted that last time too but got intimidated into an induction last minute.) I have been reading the writings of the midwife Ina May Gaskins and have noticed the connection she draws between birth and female sexuality. She discusses open-mouthed kissing (which I know works because we did that last time) and nipple stimulation and also mentions clitoral stimulation as a means of relaxing during labor and pushing. I was just wondering if anyone hear has tried that or knows someone who has tried it. Does it work? Inhibition won't be a problem for me but I am curious about how difficult it would be to relax enough for stimulation to be effective while you're in the middle of contractions. Does it help to have some sort of vibrator? (Won't my midwives love it when I break out that thing at 8 cm, lol)

I'm not trying to be crude or inappropriate but the concept of birth sexuality makes sense and it's something I'd like to explore. I'm just wondering if I'm nuts or if there are other women out there who've experimented/experienced this type of thing. Or who know someone who has

Thanks,

prufrockslady
post #2 of 38
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post #3 of 38
have you looked into the orgasmic birth? I'm a bit more reserved, but if you think it will help go for it!

I know at one point in my labour I just HAD to get totally nakked. There was no telling me otherwise! I think there were at least 10 people in the delivery room with me and I didn't know there was anyone other then my DH.
post #4 of 38
It helped me, though I didn't plan to do it and didn't even do it consciously if that makes sense. It was just sort of intuitive, I suppose. It's as though it takes your physical focus off the contractions for a bit and puts it (pleasurably) elsewhere..at least that's what it was like for me. No vibe required; I think that would have been too much for me! There is already so much blood flow/energy going on there...a simple touch or even just closing my legs in a certain way was all I needed.
post #5 of 38
I found myself reaching down and pressing into my clitoris during contractions and pushing. I remember hearing my midwife say....good- you're supporting your pubic bone. But no, it just felt better to press there!

I say go for it. I felt uninhibited by being in the birth pool. I couldn't imagine doing the same in the hospital but I felt comfortable around my midwives.
post #6 of 38
I find when the baby moves down that area just stings so I grab and push back. never thought about it otherwise... but i can see the connection.
post #7 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by marrymeflyfree View Post
It helped me, though I didn't plan to do it and didn't even do it consciously if that makes sense. It was just sort of intuitive, I suppose. It's as though it takes your physical focus off the contractions for a bit and puts it (pleasurably) elsewhere..at least that's what it was like for me. No vibe required; I think that would have been too much for me! There is already so much blood flow/energy going on there...a simple touch or even just closing my legs in a certain way was all I needed.
This happened to me. I was in the tub with ds2 and I just kept reaching down and holding the whole area. It felt so much better and served to provide support as he crowned. I didn't tear and delivered him into my hands.
post #8 of 38
perhaps your husband could help.
post #9 of 38
i personally was very aware of this pressured and stretched feeling in the clitoral area during labor, and a few times i found myself thinking "OMG, I hope my clit doesn't tear in two!!", so, honestly I don't see how someone could concentrate on rubbing it pleasurably in that situation.
however, if you can, and it's helping, then by all means, break out the vibrator!
post #10 of 38
I did this instinctively during my labor to help get through transition. It was a great distraction and took the edge off of contractions
post #11 of 38
Anything that feels good is going to help. But you really won't know until you're in the moment whether it's going to work for you. It's kind of like trying to plan for sex, you know? Like, "a massage will make me aroused." Well, maybe it will and maybe it won't. Depending on the circumstances it could either be lovely or irritating. I think the important thing is to not approach it in a clinical way. I mean, I've heard people talk about nipple-twiddling in labor as if it's just a tool in the same way as, say, pitocin is. It doesn't really work that way. If it feels lovely, it'll cause hormones to be released. If it feels irritating, it'll interfere with hormones being released.

For me, the only way any of that was going to happen in a clinical setting would be in a clinical way. I am self-conscious and inhibited about anything primal/sexual/sensual while being observed by people who are not also in a primal/sexual/sensual state. So it wouldn't work for me. But in privacy, absolutely. My best parts of labor were when I was in a situation where sexual intimacy could happen.
post #12 of 38
I had a young woman as a doula client and she rubbed her clitoris in late labor and while pushing. She was like "why am I doing this? It feels good." She as amazingly uninhibited, I was so impressed with her. It was a totally natural thing. I think it helps provide lubrication and relaxation of the vaginal walls as well as redirecting some of the intensity to a more pleasurable place as a PP said. I also agree with fourlittlebirds that it is kind of something that's there and good or it's not. I think I would have been in a more sexual place with my last birth if my husband and I were alone. We could have been alone had I wanted that but it's not something I thought about until looking back on it. So possibly plan to provide for some private time (go in the bathroom with DH if you are hospital birthing) and if it works for you great and if not, no harm done.

I agree that I find sexual birthing very interesting. I think I'll plan for more private time for our third birth and see how things go.
post #13 of 38
I don't think this is anything you can plan.

I definitely touched myself down there a lot during labor without even thinking about it. Between pushing all I had to do was close my legs and the feeling was "orgasmic". It all still hurt BAD but it was a great coping mechanism.

Also, I was at home and think things may have been different in a hospital. I may have not been as uninhibited.
post #14 of 38
I had such quick labors w/ most of mine by the time I realized I am in labor truly I was getting close to transition and no longer interested in touching. Dh and I plan on lots this labor, if it all works out. I think it will be a fun and loving way to bring baby out.
post #15 of 38
I didn't do this during labor but the sensations I felt were so close to pre-orgasmic that I considered it in earlier labor. I didn't however because things were so intense I was afraid an orgasm might actually intensify things or cause sensations that I might not like.

In a way labor can feel a bit like a sensory overload and I was afraid to add something more to it. I've looked back and wondered what might have been different or if it would have helped cope with labor better... but overall I felt I coped very well. It is funny to watch my birth video though because the sound track sounds a bit like a porno and the way I'm rocking and rolling on my knees is a bit... erotic!

You could always try a bit of stimulation and see how it feels and then continue if it is enjoyable.

Happy birthing!
post #16 of 38
I think it is so important for mom to be comfortable touching her own body in the way that feels best during labor! We need to be listening to our bodies at the most primal level, and free to go wherever that takes us. I also think that if you're having a birth attendant (i.e. not a UC), it's worth it to talk to them about your desire to be involved in that way. When I felt a strong urge to provide clitoral support/pressure as my daughter was being born, my midwife kept telling me that she had it, she was providing all the support I needed. : I feel like if mom can follow her body well, she will probably provide the best support to her tissues. Of course, if a woman doesn't want to go there, that's one thing. But if she does, her attendants should certainly do what feels right.
post #17 of 38
Thread Starter 
Thanks all! I definitely agree that it'll ultimately be a decision I make in the minute. I also think that's why homebirths are so ideal because it gives you that private setting to really be primal and sexual without strangers around. We were unable to arrange for a homebirth this time but we are using a birthing center with midwives and a doula so it will be at least somewhat more private than a standard hospital birth. Thanks again for all who shared their experiences.

Prufrockslady
post #18 of 38
I definately want to try this this time around. I've already let my MW know that I won't be calling her to come until the very last minute (she'll know I'm in labor though). I want it just to be DH and I (DS is going across the street to my sister's house). I want to approach this birth as an intimate experience between the two of us rather than a huge event. Worth a shot anyway.
post #19 of 38
*giggles like a school girl* This is awesome! I never even thought of it!

I'm going to talk about it to DH- I'm sure we'll have a little alone time during the birth, and it might help. At the very least the kissing should be fine ^_~.

Big thanks to OP for bringing this topic to light. I'm going to have to read more about it.
post #20 of 38
DH and I are planning a natural homebirth and our midwife has talked at length about this being a method of both dealing with contractions and also helping things along. For those of us that aren't modest, she very much advocates this. Stimulation will help release Oxytocin and can move things along, especially if labor or dilation has stalled. Because we're homebirthers and have a little more liberty, she also highly advocates sex if labor slows or stalls which is also just good bonding for the couple.

We hear birth stories from previous clients of our midwife's all the time and many of them use(d) clitoral stimulation and sex and swear by it - all have said if nothing else, it brings a relaxing nature and closeness to the event. Also any pressure or sensation you create for yourself down there (even if it's just the pressure of your hand or finger) will help you to focus where your energy needs to go. I have to agree that there is a connection between birth and sexuality.

And I also agree it's something you maybe can't plan for, but might be something you think about and imagine as part of your birth and it'll be in the back of your mind during your birth - I have a feeling if you decide now that you're okay with trying it, it will come naturally at birth if you have the urge. As someone else mentioned - anything that feels good during birth helps!
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