Couldn't help but jump in here for any lurkers who are reading. I hope this is not hijacking the original intent.
I was afraid of being induced with dd1...just as some OB's are afraid of NOT inducing. A blanket policy of 40 weeks is not evidence-based (unless there is medical complications) and sounds like a policy of convenience (given that early ultrasounds for dating can still be off by 5 days +/- and late ultrasounds more inaccurate), but I would say 41 + 4 (or 42) is evidence-based...if you are very SURE of the due date. Unfortunately, the baby's chance of tolerating labour well does decrease past 42 weeks...so if you're going to 42 weeks, then you NEED to know exactly when you conceived, lest you risk the baby actually being closer to 43 weeks along.
I want to offer some reassurance for anyone who may be alarmed at the idea of inductions (like I was with my first). I was induced with my first at 40 + 3. I really wanted to put it off but my blood pressure was very high and fluid very low (less than 2.5% percentile). My due date was pretty accurate (early ultrasound) and cervix was ripe (the KEY to successful induction with pitocen). I was able to get a saline lock IV that could be unhooked as needed...and was able to move around lots, despite being strapped to a monitor, which we unhooked occasionally to walk with the IV pole. Sat up on the birthing ball all afternoon, got into shower on a birthing stool which dilated me FAST (docs by then agreed to take continuous monitor off as the oxytocin drip was stopped and labour well established). No one broke my water, didn't get many dilation checks. My experience was about as natural as you can get. Didn't need pain medication. Delayed cord clamping. Baby nursed well and often. Had a doula (no midwifery care available at the time), music, etc.
It took a while for me to come to terms with not going into labour "naturally"...but reflecting on it, it was the best thing that could have happened being induced. A friend of mine had waited too long and her fluid got too low, causing cord compression/fetal distress and necessitated an emergency c-section.
Inductions can be positive and save lives when used appropriately. The most important thing is to be VERY sure of your due date. Almost everyone I know who was induced had a successful vaginal birth...the only ones I personally know who ended up with a c-section went in for an induction on their due date or just before (40 weeks) as they were eager to get things going, and so were their OB's...but no other valid reason given. It can go the other way where you're actually further along than you think....
Very important to also do your research in order to be able to have informed conversations with your midwives. When you are BOTH operating from a place of evidence and hard facts (as opposed to fears, e.g. litigation, fear of intervention, etc.) then you can make decisions that are more objective....and be respected more in your choices. Be prepared with articles/abstracts from PubMED and the COCHRANE database of systematic reviews. Be sure to point out to them that you don't listen to Dr. Google. Obviously inductions due to medical reasons are different than simply dates alone...but if refusing inductions you yourself need to be very confident about your date of conception, and very confident your fluid levels are okay (ultrasounds are good at detecting normal levels...can be some inaccuracy with low level detection), and most importantly, be very clear on the actual risks to continuing the pregnancy versus risks of inducing.
I'm at the point where an induction will be suggested. Tomorrow it's the lemon verbina herbal induction...and if it doesn't work, then it's the medical one early next week. I'm not going to refuse as I couldn't live with myself if I waited too long and my baby died in utero...but I can accept the much smaller risks to me with inductions and/or possible emergency c-section. However, everyone has a different level of risk tolerance - as long as you are fully informed with the facts and prepared to deal with all the possible outcomes, then your decision will be the right one for you.