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Could people share their positive hospital birth stories.

post #1 of 47
Thread Starter 

I have to have a hospital. Very sad. Looking for good stories.....thanks.

post #2 of 47

I use a midwife clinic at a hospital last time.  My water broke with no labor, after about 16 hours I agreed to go in and have a pitocin induction (I probably could have gotten 24 hours or so without much hassle but really had not educated myself about this situation happening!).  I was allowed to labor in the tub and on a ball etc. even with the monitoring and IV lines that having pit. required.  


I was able to have a natural labor and delivery that although there are a few details I might change or try to avoid if I could it was overall an amazing experience and delivery.  I don't have anything except other people's stories to compare it to of course as that was my first and only birthing experience so far.


For this babe I am again using midwives that deliver at a hospital.  I did switch clinics and hospitals... not because I did not like the one I used last time but I found out that a hospital even closer to home is even more NCB friendly and has a 15% or so C-section rate (lowest around by far) AND they have water-birth tubs.  The midwife clinic I am using this time is a smaller independent group (last time they were a larger group with the clinic located at and associated with the hospital system).  I feel this new group is even more hands off and less "medicalized' then the first group I used.  My friend's experience was the one that really convinced me to switch to this group (I was about 18 weeks along when I switched).  She had more the 50 hours of labor, made it through to pushing for several hours and only after everything else was tried did they go with an epidural and eventually a c-section.  Hearing her story it is easy to see her birth plan and preferences were followed and I feel very confident that a c-section at that point was the best option.  


Midwives clinics associated with hospitals are known for being a bit more medical intervention minded then a HB or BC midwife but still more open to NCB options and plans then most OBs.  I also feel that even if you use an OB but delivery as a hospital that has a large mw population you will get a more NCB positive experience as the nurse frequently work with patients wanting to deliver naturally etc.   


I don't know how much choice in hospital or provider you have but I would really ask around and research and talk with your provider and maybe tour the hospital and talk with a nurse or two as much as possible. 


Some of the best hospital birth stories I have heard also involve a doula as an advocate so that you have one more person looking out for your wishes and you can focus on your birth.

post #3 of 47

Subbing. It looks like I'm going to be having a hospital birth this time around. I love my OB, and I'm becoming more optimistic daily that I can have a positive birth experience with her, but I, too, would love to hear some stories.

post #4 of 47

I'm not feeling really chatty tonight, but will say both of mine were hosptial births and were fine.


First one was a c-section after a mostly natural labor ( I had some stadol at 3 cm. cuz I had stalled, then no more drugs) after 2 and 1/2 hours of pushing, sunnyside up presentation, I just could not get him out. At that point they gave me an epidural, which was not the horror I had been afraid of and they delivered my son by c-section. It was not traumatic. I remember Bruce Springsteen playing in the OR.


Second birth was a vbac. I was way past due. They agreed to break my water instead of starting with pitocin. That started my labor fine, so no drugs needed, natural labor, and later had a local for the episiotomy. I did tear a lot, maybe should have had another c-section. I am very small. Baby #2 was 6 lbs. 6 oz. and I tore.


Were they perfect births? No. Were they terrible births? No.


Both recoveries were fine.


Some nurses were really nice and helpful. Some were cranky and probably should be in another job.


My OBs both tried to be really helpful and were kind.


FWIW, second birth I got to walk around, had a rocking chair, headphones, etc. I was better prepared and knew what to expect maybe. The food in the hospital was AWFUL. Bleh. Maybe you will be lucky and your hospital will have better food! What else? Oh, first labor was 6 hours, second labor was 4 hours. Fast, I know, but normal for the women in my family.


Can you take a tour of the delivery room at the hospital? Sometimes it's nice to go there and you kind of know the layout and what it looks like.

post #5 of 47

I had a hospital birth with my first, and will now be having one with my second thanks to the collapse of the local midwifery program.


First birth was fine - I would recommend speaking to your doctor about a lot of things first, especially if you plan to deviate from hospital routine.  Write a clear birth plan and have your doctor look at it.  I wouldn't birth in a hospital without a doula, they know how to grease wheels and add comfort to the situation.  Both my nurses were fantastic, and did all they could to help me achieve the birth I wanted.


When I was 36 hours in and needed an epidural (DS was badly positioned) we were well supported and it worked in a textbook way.  I slept for hours and woke up at 9 1/2 cm and ready to push.


DS was born shortly after, and we left the hospital 8 hours after birth, as pre-arranged with my family doctor.


I'm expecting a similar (if shorter - please, blessed goddess?) experience this time around.  I'd like to skip the epi, but if I need it, I need it.

post #6 of 47

The quote below (I can't put the quote first, ack!) sums it up for me, too.  Mt first was an unmedicated (with exception of one dose of antibiotics for GBS, preplanned) hospital birth.  We had a doula, I laboured at home through the night and arrived in active labour.  I kind of irritated the intake/triage/assessment nurse because I hadn't come in when my water started leaking (it was a super slow leak) and other little nitpicky things that she half argued with me about...but I had a birth plan signed by my family physician (who would be attending the birth) and we moved along from there and into a room without her impacting our plan.


I had indicated in my birth plan that I preferred not to have routine electronic fetal monitoring, which was respected - the nurse took one look at me and started running me a bath :P  I kind of lucked out in that my nurse had originally trained as a midwife in the UK, and she was cool with me just listening to my body when I started to get the urge to push.  The doctor arrived as I was in transition, I pushed on my side and baby went right on me after birth (he was taken within 10-15 minutes to be weighed etc, and then handed right back to me - however, I have a friend who recently had a baby at the same hospital and she had baby on her chest uninterrupted for something like 3 hours after the birth!  So they are coming around on that one).  As jcregan said, there were little things (IV that stayed in too long, manual removal of a couple of clots, that kind of thing) that I didn't want during my second birth, but those came clear to me after the birth, as I was reflecting on it - they weren't things that caused trauma or anything at the moment that they happened.  My biggest regret is not asking about the possibility of an early discharge...it was very busy at the hospital that week and the nurses in the postpartum unit were really slow to respond to requests for help with breastfeeding, so we would have been pretty much just as well off in the comfort of our own home.  But that's another hindsight is 20/20 thing - I had just assumed I would get lots of help during our 2-night stay.


 I think having a doula there made a huge difference for us. Not because she really advocated or spoke for us - personally I feel that is a fine line for a doula to walk.  She reminded me of things I wanted to try, and provided fantastic emotional and physical support at home and at hospital.  She was the one who suggested when it might be time to move to hospital, and I found out afterward that she predicted baby's birth time to my mom almost to the minute :P (he was born about 3.5 hours after I was admitted - at 11:45.  My doula figured we'd have a baby by noon :P). We definitely had our own groove going when we got there and the staff picked up on that and let us keep doing our thing.  And frankly, I think they saw that we had a doula and recognized that we were pretty serious about wanting to stick to our birth plan. 


Oh and the best part...the nurses were blown away because it's not something they see that often ;)  The nurse that was kind of a pain when I was admitted made a point of coming out to see us as we left the birth unit and told me what a fantastic job I did.  And as she left me in the postpartum unit, our birth room nurse took my hand and told me I should be very proud.  Yes, it's a hospital and it has some annoying policies and stuff, but rest assured that the people there actually DO care, know what I mean?


Hope that helps.  It was actually fun reliving that...I think I needed to do that today (long story, I won't get into it :P).


Originally Posted by jcregan View Post

I was able to have a natural labor and delivery that although there are a few details I might change or try to avoid if I could it was overall an amazing experience and delivery.  I don't have anything except other people's stories to compare it to of course as that was my first and only birthing experience so far.

post #7 of 47

i had an unplanned hospital birth with my 1st due to early pre-e. i was lucky enough to have a really good doctor who actually cared and took the time to talk to us and everything. i had to be induced, and ended up with an epidural which turned out to be only in the last hour of labor before i started pushing. he made sure i didn't tear. they did the majority of the newborn exams and what not in my room because dh wouldn't let ds out of his sight and the nurses gave up trying to take him without dh winky.gif i was pleased with the care i got from that doctor and that hospital. i am using a different doctor in a different town at a different hospital this time so i'm not sure how this hospital birth will compare but i'm hoping for something similar, minus the induction :)

post #8 of 47

i really like the hospital i deliver at. however, i'm in ontario (canada) and i think things are done a bit differently? my hospital has a birthing center within it (don't ask me where the emergency room is bc i have NO idea) and a great maternity ward. it's room-in only here. no nurseries for anyone to take your baby off to. great nurses who will take your baby if you need a rest. big birthing rooms with tubs and radios (the OB i had for my 2nd son liked my yoga music LOL.) fantastic labour nurses. i think it's all about the nurses. i barely saw the doctors. the 2nd doc didn't do anything actually except congratulate me on my natural birth of a 9 pound 3 ounce child LOL. a medical student (i had met her previously. it's a teaching hospital. i allowed any med student in the first time but the second time, i said girls only. i had my reasons.) i appreciated that they asked me what i wanted (they used forceps to turn ds1 and to help deliver him but not without my ok. they would've let me just keep pushing instead if i hadn't agreed) and didn't suggest an episiotomy; i did tear but thankfully wasn't cut. i think i'd rather heal from a natural tear. not fun to recover from though! my main reason for delivering there though? the maternity ward. i love having nurses there and docs to take care of me. i stay for as long as they let me, getting meals delivered to me and just resting up. why not take advantage of the help? sure, there are things NOT to love (esp if you only have a semi-private room cuz that's all hubby's work covers!) but isn't that the way with everything in life? you have to find the good things. i stay with my family doc until i have to switch over and see the OB at my hospital (bc it's not local to me, i have to register with an OB at some point. i think it was 28 weeks last time.) both are easy going. not invasive docs. OB doesn't do internal exams unless you want one (i didn't get one with son #1 but with son #2 i wanted to know if i was dilated at all.)

not a bad experience :)

post #9 of 47
Originally Posted by baby3in2011 View Post

 he made sure i didn't tear. 

Just curious - how did a doc ensure you didn't tear?

post #10 of 47

This isn't my story, but I'll tell it anyway.  We've talked about our birth stories quite a few times.


My SIL had a really positive hospital experience.  She hired a great doula, labored mostly at home, and then went into the hospital when she was about 5cm.  She didn't have any pain meds, no epidural, no pit.  She said the nurses were great about not offering pain meds after they offered once and her doula politely refused and made sure they they knew they didn't need to keep offering it.  Keeping cervical checks to a minimum was in her birth plan, and she said that they only checked her once when she got there, and then again once she started pushing (to make sure there was no cervical lip).  They did do a heartrate check on the baby every 15 minutes, which she was fine with, although it was sometimes hard for her to manage if it was during a contraction.  She labored for 2 more hours at the hospital, and pushed for about 30 minutes, and had a healthy baby girl.  She only had one tiny tear (I think it required 1 stitch), and she was fairly upright and using the squatting bar during pushing.  Baby went immediately to mamas chest, and they did almost an hour of skin to skin before weighing/cleanup.  Nurses were respectful of her wishes, and she said she only had to remind nurses a few times about things like pacifiers, or turning down a trip to the nursery.  She said that she was very polite in her refusals and reminders, and in turn the nurses she interacted with were more than willing to accommodate her requests.  She also mentioned that she got a lot less flak from the hospital staff than she did from our MIL, or from her mom!


I think the key to the good hospital birth stories I hear, is that the mamas and their partners went in to their hospital births really educated.  And most of them had an another well educated support person - either a doula, or a friend or relative who would be a good advocate (and wasn't afraid to be a bully, if need be).  I think that you're probably more well educated that most about birthing choices.  I've seen you posted quite a number of threads about how hard this has been for you (and rightfully so, this is REALLY HARD).  Have you figured anything out in terms of finding a support person, or whether your midwife will be able to attend? 

post #11 of 47
Originally Posted by MegBoz View Post

Originally Posted by baby3in2011 View Post

 he made sure i didn't tear. 

Just curious - how did a doc ensure you didn't tear?

he did a perineum massage and while pushing he would tell me to stop (i guess they just know, same with my mw with my 2nd birth) so i didnt tear, i trusted in them and if they said to stop pushing, i would stop...and i didnt tear either time.



post #12 of 47


post #13 of 47

I had a hospital birth and it was fine. I did choose an epidural, and was happy with that choice. I could feel my legs and was able to support myself to push, they set up a mirror so I got to see my husband catch the baby and cut the cord, the lactation consultant was incredibly helpful the first night when the baby wouldn't stop crying and wouldn't latch, and I was in the same spacious private room throughout. Nothing happened that I had asked to avoid - episiotomy, separation from the baby, etc.


No one would mistake a hospital room for a spa vacation, and there were things I wasn't crazy about. But I wasn't there long, and I left with a healthy brand-new human being -- that's a pretty awesome outcome to any experience!

post #14 of 47

 I had a hospital birth with DD (now 3) and will have another when this next one is ready in a few weeks.


Mine was great.  I have a fantastic midwife who only delivers at this one hospital.  I needed my insurance to cover it, so homebirth was out, but ultimately I was fine with that.  I took a Bradley course and used the instructor as my doula.  We made a plan to stay home as long as possible which we did.  I had kind of a strange labor - my water broke at 2:30 am, but I did not feel a single contraction until I came close to transition around 6 the following night.  Midwife had me come to her office at 4.  She checked me and I was 6 cm.  She sent DH and I home to have dinner and told us she expected to see us at the hospital in about an hour or so.  Boy was she right.  We arrived at the hospital and I took each contraction on hands and knees right on my birthball - once in the parking lot, 3X in the marble lobby (some great stares from onlookers!), and a few when we were being admitted to L&D.  The spectacle caused several residents to come running in a panic, but I fell even more in love with my MW when she told them, "She's fine.  This is what natural labor looks like."


We got in there and got settled.  I think hospital policy required that they monitor me for a couple of minutes, stick the hep lock in, and ask me a bunch of inane questions like whether or not I had electricity in my house (I live in the NYC suburbs!) but M/W  sped all of these things up for me, and everyone just left us alone.  The anesthesiologist popped her head in, M/W, DH, and I said no thanks and she left.  That was that. I pushed for 2 hours, and out came DD.


I was happy to be in the hospital when DD came out.  She had gotten stuck and was pretty blue.  Her apgars were low and she was kind of grunty instead of crying.  Thankfully, she was fine but I was happy to already be in the hospital just in case.


The hospital was a bit of a throwback - I swear my room had a rotary phone - but it was fine.  Like someone else said, some of the nurses were nice, some were not, but we got out of there in 36 hours.  They have a no husbands overnight policy, but DH slept with me right in the bed overnight and no one said anything.  The overnight nursery nurses didn't know squat about BF'ing.  WHen I went down to nurse DD, they pointed to a lawn chair in a room called "the circumscision room" and left me alone without so much as a clue.  Did I get a good latch that night?  No.  But did DD nurse like a champion for the next 16 months?  Yup.


I guess what I'm saying is, it's all about picking a provider that you like and trust and kind of working around the things you don't like.  If you can stay home a good long time, I think you can avoid a lot of the big hassles.  I recently met with my midwife's OB partner and he told me that if any nurse ignores any part of my birth plan (which he supports 100%) to call his cell phone day or night and he will set them straight immediately.  This made me feel so much better!


GL to you. 

post #15 of 47

ALl three of mine were born in hospitals.  The first one, I did not have good caregivers and I was not informed.  Not so great.


The second and third were just *fine*.  There was stress leading up to them, from the OB, but the actual births were great, and were attended by wonderful midwives.  They both went along the same pattern too.  Went past 42 weeks, finally labor started and it got serious very quick.  I wait until the last minute before we go in, so I walked in 7-8 cm and feeling pushy both times.  Got our room, got settled, and had a baby. :)


It wasn't a soft, candle lit experience.  It was rip-roaring labor for 4 hours, 15 minutes pushing and the kid barelling out like a frieght train.  But it wasn't bad.  My biggest complaint at the time was how ridiculously uncomfortable the beds in the LD rooms were.  They were much better when I was moved to a recovery room.

post #16 of 47

I am a new doula, and since they aren't my stories I won't share details.  But I just wanted to encourage you that all 3 hospital births I have attended have been positive birth experiences for the mothers (both from my perspective and what they said a couple weeks later).  They were all at different hospitals, 2 with no drugs, one with an uncomplicated epidural (which was what this mama needed for a positive birth).   Two were with OB's and while as an opinionated, hb planning mama there were a couple things that irritated me, they were definitely minor and weren't mentioned by the laboring mama at the time or in retrospect.  The third was mw attended, and it was a beautiful, peaceful ncb, that felt almost as intimate as if it had been at home.  


I am hoping you find peace with your circumstances and have a beautiful, positive birth experience goodvibes.gif

post #17 of 47

I had a great hospital birth. No pain meds, was allowed and encouraged to move throughout labor, labored in the hospital's birth tub from five centimeters until I was almost complete, and was not continously monitored. I had no IV, and while I wasn't allowed solid food, I was allowed liquids/popsicles/etc. The staff was great. I was asked once, and only once, if I planned on pain relief. I bled a lot after delivering the placenta, and required an IM dose of pitocin and later a dose of cytotec. Other than that, no medications or drugs. We roomed in with no problems, and got released within 24 hours of delivery despite DD's slightly elevated bilirubin.


OP - I think your provider is what makes the difference and not the location. I had a great CNM who shared my beliefs about birth in many ways. Try to look on the bright side - you'll have access to a lot of help (hot meals, help with baby, help showering/getting around/ice packs) that you might not have at home,

post #18 of 47

I birthed in a hospital and it was a good, positive experience.


I was induced because he was overdue and the doctor was worried about mec (turns out there was mec in the fluid). I was already 3cm when we started the pitocin. I chose to have an epidural as I felt the stuff start to work. Over the course of the day, I dilated all the way and was pushing by 9pm. Baby was born after a hour or so of pushing. No episiotomy, but I did tear. The OB did massage, but at the end, I was pushing perhaps a bit too hard.


I didn't like the numbness of my legs from the epidural, or the nausea or the no food thing, but I did like the lack of pain. For me, it was the right trade off.


The hospital staff were respectful of breastfeeding (the lactation consultant was especially helpful) and didn't say a thing when I declined a circ. The nurses were all quite nice, though some were better as helping with nursing than others.

post #19 of 47

all three of my babies were born in a hospital.  i had a high-risk OB-GYN, though I wasn't high-risk.  A few months into my first pg, i started to panic.  The more I read and thought about what i wanted, the more i thought it WOULDN'T be possible with a high-risk doc in a hospital.  I plugged on though and went ahead and made a birth plan.  I took it to one of the docs in the group (at the time there were 3, now there are 4).  He said, we'll put this in your chart, but this is just what we do anyway.  I felt better knowing that they were not "this is what we do and we do it with every patient" kind of docs.  they very much seemed to want to honor each mother/family's wishes, but also were not high-intervention to begin with. 

the other blessing was the hospital, where the goal is to support mothers who desire to have a natural childbirth.  fortunately, i didn't have to worry that i was going to have to fight somebody every step of the way. 


for every birth, i labored away from the hospital as long as possible.  easy for the first, we lived 20 minutes away.  harder for the second two because we were 1.5 hours away.  so for those, we went to the hospital parking lot, parked, and walked the neighborhood and rested in the car or hospital lobby. 


i was blessed with overall quick labors (longest being about 12 hours).  but i was able to wear what i wanted, eat, drink, walk around....whatever.  the key was being unmedicated though.  i know that if i elected to have an epidural that i wouldn't have had that kind of freedom.  my hospital monitored for 20 minutes on admission and then dopplered me every hour and when my water broke. 


for my first, i delivered squatting and pulled my son out myself.  for my second i was hands and knees (he was posterior).  for my 3rd, i was in that typical on your back and pull your legs up position.  not what i wanted but what i've learned from my three is that once i hit transition, i need to get into the position i want to deliver in because after transition starts, it's too difficult to be changing positions (for me).  so, ideally, i would have squatted with all three, but i literally could.not.change.position after transition started.  i was still able to pull my 3rd baby out myself.  i regret not being able to do that with my middle.  i will say that it was not my plan to do this with my first, it was my doc saying "reach down and pull your baby out".  then, with my third, i just automatically did it.


i had a perfect preg with first two.  the third contained questionable diabetes, a breech that finally turned, and a prolapsed cord risk (the cord did end up coming out stretched over her crown, but doc moved it, but she had it wrapped around her neck and body and there was slightly mec stained fluid - but all was fine).  the key was a relaxed doctor.


all three were immediately brought to breast and stimulated and warmed on me.  my third did have a little blow-by oxygen in the warmer right beside my bed for about 30 seconds. 


we roomed in the entire stay and my babies only went to the nursery for weights.  and i was allowed in the nursery (or dh was) to be with them. 


my babies all slept in the bed with me in the hospital (as much as i slept!  hahaha!).


i can't say enough good things about my hospital deliveries.  i could not ask for anything better. 


best wishes to all of you!

post #20 of 47

My last birth was in a hospital and it went very well.  I was high risk this time.


I am not sure if it helped that i had had a prior birth out of hospital, so maybe they were more comfortable not hounding me.


In any case...


- I had a labor nurse who pretty much let me be the whole time.  Totally worked with me and my doula to get the heart reading once an hour, in whatever position i was laboring in.  She otherwise left me alone to do what i needed completely, no asking me if i wanted pain relief, etc.  Getting this nurse was great.  When we called the hospital, we mentioned that we were planning on a natural birth, so i'm not sure if they hooked us up purposely or not.  We would have requested a change had there been any issues.


- I drank whatever i wanted in the bathroom.  They had their policy, but I just did it in the bathroom. I had no desire to eat, but I did make myself eat some honey sticks for a few calories.


- The on call OB was also better than i had expected stating "great, natural, that's the best way", though, he took exception to some of the things on my birth plan (which i had already reviewed with and gotten the support from my main OB).  But we worked through that.  (example - he didn't want a "new fangled" way of delivering the baby uhoh3.gif, but, since I really only want to push flat on my back, this was not an issue.  Also, he didn't want me in the shower in case i fell over or had the baby there or something, but i ended up going ahead with a shower right then as i got there (at 6cm) and he was fine with that).  He was known for higher rates of episiotomy, so I explicitly repeated no cutting, and DH was very vigilant about making sure he never picked up scissors. 


-  And probably most important, I had a FABULOUS doula, who, while I think she felt she didn't do a whole lot, her very presence in the room was a constant source of warmth for me and DH, and just helped to transform it from a hospital room to simply being the place where i was to have my baby, it didn't matter.  Seeing her, hearing her, was just this light for me. I don't know how to explain it, but I had no worries at all once she got there.


- It helped that my main OB, who I adored, was on call the following day, and discharged me early (there was a huge snowstorm starting).  The on-call ped was also incredibly great, and discharged DD early as well. 


- This hospital was VERY pro-breastfeeding, and was awesome.  Encouraged skin-to-skin as much as possible, right from birth, the assigned post-partum nurses helped you latch each time if you needed, provided help, whatever, one - to -one talks.  They had classes in the morning to help you, that they strongly encouraged you to go to, and lactation consultants to come to your room.  it was wonderful.  With my first, i felt very on my own and had a truly difficult time.  I very much appreciated the *embedded* help at the hospital.


I have to say, it was very positive. Just as positive as my first birth, which was with midwives in a free-standing center.

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