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Penny Simkin's "laboring in bed" handout/other positive hospital birth resources

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I have a friend who's due early October, and due to a complication, will be monitored throughout her labor. She's feeling very apprehensive about labor and birth in general, and since she knows she she's going to be hooked up to the monitors, she feels most of the birth books/stories she's read don't apply to her situation.

I'm looking for a pdf of Penny Simkin's "when you have to labor in bed" handout. If any of you have it, and could pm me so I can give you my email for a PDF, I'd really appreciate it. I can't find the whole thing on the web.

Do you know of any books or websites where she could read positive hospital birth stories? If so, please let me know, I'd love to send some info her way.
post #2 of 4
I would email Penny directly, she is just that type of professional who would want to help you and send the pdf.

Most American women birth in a hospital with the medical model of maternity care, that means in a bed hooked up to monitors, with an epidural, coached pushing on their back.
That is the American way of giving birth!
That is the typical birth scenario for women if you read on the mainstream pregnancy websites.

Sometimes it works out you have a vaginal birth, statistically almost 40% of women giving birth that way in NYC it cascades into a c/section.

Having a hired doula to help her could really make a difference, even if she has to remain in the bed monitored.
post #3 of 4
I second what sweet.p said. I met Penny at a conference and I think she would be eager and willing to help. With that being said, the Labor Handbook written by Ms. Simpkin would be very helpful. It has all the positions for laboring in bed, with and without an epidural, as well as when they are indicated and contraindicated. I also think that hiring a doula could make a huge difference. Just having a handout of the positions will likely not be enough during labor. She's going to need someone to encourage her to get into those positions, remind her when to change them, and if she has an epidural she'll likely need help physically repositioning herself as well as suggestions about how and when to move. And of course doulas are helpful for all the usual support reasons. She might find the extra encouragement and support really beneficial since she's feeling apprehensive and like she's up against an extra challenge.

You can also encourage her that she still has options. Is it possible to get telemetry monitoring? Then she has more freedom to move around, walk the halls, possibly get into the shower if they're waterproof (something worth checking on with the hospital in advance of her birth as they may have to contact the manufacturer or do some other hunting which will take time). I've found that the intermittent monitoring isn't very "freeing" either. Most of my hospital clients end up just going with the continuous monitoring after a while, especially if they can get the telemetry, because having your focus and/or positioning interrupted 40 minutes after they let you off the monitor just so they can hook you up again can be really disturbing. I will caution, though, that if your friend is overweight, it can be more difficult for them to get their 20 min. reading, and she may have to lay in a certain position for that time. Not to discourage her but just to prepare her that telemetry might not work for her.
post #4 of 4
I agree with what the others have said. I labor with my 2nd on monitors most of the time. I used a birth ball and rocking chair near the bed and both were extremely hepful, much better than staying on the bed.

I 2nd the Labor Handbook and for sure a doula!!!

There are many mainstream sites that you can find good birth stories on. There are also birth stories posted on this site that are successful and happy hospital births. Just because a book may talk about walking and coping when not monitored, does not mean that they dont apply to her. She can learn alot about the process that can help her with the other decisions she has to make during labor and birth as well as postpartum information they often contain as well.
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