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Wow, how do I even approach this?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

I'm three weeks away from my due-date.  Tonight I was talking to my partner, and I'm not sure how it even came up, but I was telling him some of the things to expect during labour (it's his first, my third, so he's never been through this before.)  I was telling him about how I got the shakes last time after the birth, and that it could happen again.  Just little things like that so he didn't get freaked out.  And what did he say to me?

 

"That's fine, you'd just better not play it up." 

 

Wow.

 

How the hell do I deal with this?  I can't have any negativity while I'm going through labour/birth!  I'm aiming for a natural birth again, no pain medication.  It's going to hurt, and I'm probably going to make noise at some point.  I tend to go out-of-body a bit and really don't have a lot of control over what's going on as the baby makes its way out.  I'm sure some of you know exactly what I'm talking about.  You just don't have a lot of control.  So how the hell am I supposed to concentrate on not wanting to die from pain, when I'm totally self-conscious that he'll be eye-rolling behind me, or accusing me of "playing it up" for what, exactly...attention??

 

I don't even know how to talk to him about this.  I'm just so upset that he's being so negative and, well, MEAN about this all of a sudden.  Maybe it's just hormones, but I can't stop crying about how terrible it's going to be to have to be guarding myself so much during labour so he doesn't make fun of me or accuse me of trying to get attention.  I mean wtf.  Seriously.

post #2 of 23

hug2.gif

 

What a bizarre thing to say! That would bother me too. I hope it was just a rare foot-in-mouth moment, and not a reflection of a deeper issue.

 

Maybe you could take what you've written here and re-word it in an email to him?

post #3 of 23

Can you two talk it over with your care provider at the next appointment? What to expect and such? I'm so sorry, love. That was a terrible thing for him to say.

post #4 of 23

Communicate communicate communicate! Maybe try to help him understand what would be most helpful for you during labor. There are tons of excellant books, articles etc for labor partners. Would he be willing to educate himself about it?

 

Worse comes to worst, remember you can choose who to have with you during the birth. I know it would be less than ideal for the dad to not be present, but if he can't get past his hangups, you may not have a choice. The most important thing is that you are well supported during labor. Not all people are cut out for this stuff.

post #5 of 23

Oh dear. hug2.gif  That wasn't very nice at all.  Is that something totally out of character for him?  I would definitely have a talk with him and see what's going on.  Hopefully, it's just cold feet and wasn't supposed to be such an asinine statement as it came out.

post #6 of 23

I wonder if he was trying to lighten the mood and be funny and it came out all wrong? It is a totally bizarre thing to say. Maybe he's feeling scared and apprehensive about his own ability to cope while you're in labor and that's how he shows it? Whatever his reason, it was a pretty awful thing to say. I'm thinking that you'll need a conversation with him to ask him about why he said that and what it really means. Does he really mean that? If so, I wouldn't let him in the room. This baby's father won't be present at the birth because he has a lot of high-strung negative energy and I don't want that within 10 miles of me when I'm giving birth.

 

Unfortunately, it may come to a point where you have to make the tough call and exclude him. Hopefully talking to him more will help iron out what is really going on, and educate HIM about what NOT to EVER say to a very pregnant woman!!  Hugs momma!

post #7 of 23

My LO is 9 months old - he was MY third...my DH's first.... you didnt mention it so i will...HIRE A LABOR DOULA!   I know its an expense....i felt like it was a REAL expense and that it wouldnt be needed - after all - this is my third!  And i SO regret not having someone there just for me....give DH the set up jobs and call people and take pictures and get the receiving blankets etc..etc...He will be there if you need him - but if you start to feel some negativity - you have your doula to help out. 

I recently saw part of my birth video that i never saw before...my DH said something pretty rude to me while i labored...i didnt know it - at the time (totally relate to the not really present sort of thing OP)   - I was really petulant during labor ...screaming 'nonono'  and 'this isnt helping' and stuff like that....at one point, i leaned on DH and moaned 'it hurts, it hurts!!'  and what did he say??  "I know, so push the baby out so it doesnt hurt anymore!"   - real snarky -like.....

i thought that was pretty thoughtless....but in labor - i had no idea he said it - no memory of it.  So the good news is, dont judge your DH by this one day in your lives....and really - hire a labor doula!

post #8 of 23

if my DH said that I would assume he was joking.  Even men who know nothing of birth and their only exposure to it has been through hollywood TV, they still seem to grasp that its one of the most intense and painful things and woman can go through.  So, perhaps he was just kidding but it came out wrong.  I would have to question my DH on it and if he really felt that way I would also feel self conscious...at first.  In the middle of it all, I am pretty sure I wont care who thinks what and wont be able to think of anything but getting that baby out of there.  Perhaps if he does really think labor isnt all that  bad and women just "play it up" sometims, you can enlighten him.  Ask him if when he gets kicked in the scrotum does he "play it up", lol.  Except ours lasts a bit longer, lol.

post #9 of 23

Whoa. I don't blame you for being so upset. If My DH said that I'd assume he was being facetious... and if he wasn't? As my grandma would have said, that's grounds for a cast iron skillet!

post #10 of 23

Oh honey, I'm so sorry he said that. I definitely think you're right to want to have a completely safe and positive atmosphere for labouring. I would have a serious talk with him about the whole process, perhaps maybe you could watch some homebirth videos together or talk to your care provider about what exactly goes on? I'm very sorry about this.

post #11 of 23
Thread Starter 

I talked to him about it last night (through hormonal sobs) and he did apologize and agreed it was a stupid thing to say.  I think part of it is that he's freaked out about the birth, having never gone through it before.  I snarkily told him that I wish HE was the one about to go through it so he at least understood just how bad it can hurt.  I also reiterated that you really don't have a lot of control over what happens - your body kind of takes over.  I'm 100% sure he doesn't understand that at all.  He doesn't get how you can have no control over the pushing and the noise and other fun things going on.

 

I'll have both midwives there and their assistant, so a doula may be a bit overkill.  I do know, from talking to my midwives at the last appointment, that they will not tolerate any negativity and will totally kick him out if he's being a pain, hah.  He wouldn't like that too much, I'm sure.

 

The odd thing is that he HAS been educating himself on births.  I found out the other day that he's even been watching birthing videos so he knows what to expect, and when he comes to the midwife appointments he's spouting off random knowledge about whatever they happen to be talking about that day.  So he SHOULD be aware that birth can be messy, and loud, and sometimes a little scary.  And I'm not going through labour for flipping attention.

 

I was just so completely offended at that comment.  It had better have been a joke, or we're going to have some problems. =/

post #12 of 23

I'm so glad that you got a chance to talk to him about it! The older I get the more I realize that male and female humans are barely the same species. I swear, we're like humans and primates almost (guess which ones are the primates! lol) and our communication styles and abilities are SO vastly different that it's a wonder that we manage to function as a society at all. Hopefully he'll think before making further comments like that one. I don't know that he'll ever fully understand how our bodies take over in labor until he sees it in action with you, and even then it's questionable. I like the analogy of him being kicked in the scrotum and if he plays it up and if he has total control over his reactions at that time either. It's something he can at least relate to. I'm glad you have such supportive MWs that will toss him out if he starts acting like an idiot!

post #13 of 23

I'm so sorry.  I do think men have a hard time grasping birth and they generally don't like to feel so out-of-control about the situation...and this is one thing they can not control.  I would say he's probably just fearful of what's going to happen and how *he's* going to react.  You may be saying how you can't control your noises and such and maybe he's wondering what you will think of him if he lost it, etc.  I know, NOT supportive at all, but that would be something my dh would do.

post #14 of 23

Well said Sharita.  Very nice "kick in the...." analogy.

post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Nikki~ View Post

I talked to him about it last night (through hormonal sobs) and he did apologize and agreed it was a stupid thing to say.  I think part of it is that he's freaked out about the birth, having never gone through it before.  I snarkily told him that I wish HE was the one about to go through it so he at least understood just how bad it can hurt.  I also reiterated that you really don't have a lot of control over what happens - your body kind of takes over.  I'm 100% sure he doesn't understand that at all.  He doesn't get how you can have no control over the pushing and the noise and other fun things going on.

 

I'll have both midwives there and their assistant, so a doula may be a bit overkill.  I do know, from talking to my midwives at the last appointment, that they will not tolerate any negativity and will totally kick him out if he's being a pain, hah.  He wouldn't like that too much, I'm sure.

 

The odd thing is that he HAS been educating himself on births.  I found out the other day that he's even been watching birthing videos so he knows what to expect, and when he comes to the midwife appointments he's spouting off random knowledge about whatever they happen to be talking about that day.  So he SHOULD be aware that birth can be messy, and loud, and sometimes a little scary.  And I'm not going through labour for flipping attention.

 

I was just so completely offended at that comment.  It had better have been a joke, or we're going to have some problems. =/


I had my midwife, her two apprentices and a very supportive hubby with me at my birth but, believe you me, I was still glad my doula was there too! I thought I wouldn't need one, but late in my pregnacy I got nervous and hired her. I know this isn't your first birth so you probably know pretty much what you want, but if DP doesn't hange his tune you might look into it. A good doula is the best labor tool a momma can have!

 

post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkvosu View Post




A good doula is the best labor tool a momma can have!

 


Eh, my hubby was great. We took Bradley together. He was awesome on my team with my CNM.

Why bother to pay a stranger when you can train your hubby to do what needs to be done?

And I have personally seen doulas mess up that amazing "couples energy vibe" that can exist while a mom labors. The kind Ina May writes about it her books.
Twice. I was so upset for my friends.


Only if a hubby is absent or can't be trained .. or has a phobia, then maybe a doula.
post #17 of 23

We took the Bradley classes also, but as wonderful and nurturing as my DH is (he SEEMS like the perfect labor partner husband) in the moment he wasn't very much help.  I'm getting a doula for this second go-round.

post #18 of 23

My hubby was excellent, too. I don't think I could have asked for a better partner. Still though, my doula played a significant role. She supported us, BOTH of us, and helped us maintain that great vibe your speaking of. Just as an example, when I was pushing, dh was pretty much underneath me, offering his hand for me to squeeze. My midwives were near all the action, checking heart tones, etc. My doula was wiping my forehead with a wet cloth and giving me sips of water in between contractions.  The small bit of comfort she offered was honestly the only thing giving me hope that I would make it through!. Remember, the birth event belongs to the mom AND the dad. It's his baby is being born, too, and he is going through his own stuff, albeit not anywhere near the intensity of what the mom is going through. Of course, everyone is different and that's great that you didn't feel the need for one, but please be careful trying to convince people that doulas are irrelevant, redundant, or only needed in certain situations. Births of any and all kinds could potentially benefit from doula assistance. Among other things, they help so many women avoid uneccessary and/or harmful interventions. They are great resource for many familes.

 

Also, my doula wasn't anymore of a stranger than my midwives. She taught our childbirth class and we had several meetings with her beforehand. We got pretty close and I felt I knew her pretty well. I still communicate with her weekly.  She has become a near and dear friend to us.

post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkvosu View Post

Of course, everyone is different and that's great that you didn't feel the need for one, but please be careful trying to convince people that doulas are irrelevant, redundant, or only needed in certain situations. Births of any and all kinds could potentially benefit from doula assistance. Among other things, they help so many women avoid uneccessary and/or harmful interventions. They are great resource for many familes.



yeahthat.gif

post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkvosu View Post

. Of course, everyone is different and that's great that you didn't feel the need for one, but please be careful trying to convince people that doulas are irrelevant, redundant, or only needed in certain situations. Births of any and all kinds could potentially benefit from doula assistance. Among other things, they help so many women avoid uneccessary and/or harmful interventions. They are great resource for many familes.


Sorry no, I still have to disagree. To tell a woman there's no way she'll birth naturally without help from another paid woman is wrong. And fathers should step up better. The only reason the paid doula culture even exists is because the culture of birth in the United States is broken. Thoughtful research and careful selection of my care providers was all that was needed for me to birth well.
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