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Holistic Stages of Labor and Rule of 10 Myth

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I know I posted this in the forum months ago, but now that we're all at the end and really thinking about labor, I thought I'd go ahead and post it again. 

 

This article is a wonderful description of the stages of labor women go through, with special emphasis on the emotional/brain states.  Obviously women with shorter labors will not linger in all these stages for long, but I think it's really a beautiful article with much to offer (our partners, too!). 

http://houstonbirthdoula.com/blog/2010/05/the-holistic-stages-of-labor/

 

 

This article was originally printed in Midwifery Today, but you can't access it from them anymore.  Fortunately this woman put it on her blog!  It's about the traditional "rule of 10" referring to 10cm dilated being the proper time to start pushing.  It debunks this myth and teaches women and care providers to listen to the primal wisdom that is in our bodies.  This is especially helpful to those of us UCing, but also for anyone to recognize when you feel pushy that you can listen to your body and not a care provider that is saying no, you can't b/c you're not dilated far enough.

http://birthskirt.blogspot.com/2010/03/rule-of-10-versus-womens-primal-wisdom.html

post #2 of 9

Great resources!  

 

I was just having a discussion about pushing with my MW and she said one time as a student MW she was nervous about the mother feeling pushy b/c the head midwife wasn't there yet and the mama wasn't "complete".  She instructed her to try to breathe through it until the MW arrived.  The mother did so, but then mentioned later that she never reconnected with that urge to push.  It's so interesting to me what happens when we "ignore" our body's urges.  It was so intriguing to my MW that she then completed her research paper on that very topic (feeling pushy and why mothers should go with that feeling regardless of dilation)

 

I was instructed not to push because there was a "tiny lip of cervix"- I was SO close to 10cm.  I had to try to resist the urge for NINETY MINUTES.  It was pure hell.  

... and apparently I have a lot of stories about the urge to push.  LOL.  It's so interesting to me :-)

post #3 of 9

... I have another story.  SORRY!  This is a good one though.

My MW was attending a birth in the hospital and this particular mother had a whole slew of people on her birth team.  She was only at a 6 and she felt pushy, so everyone in the room, of course, starts yelling at her DON'T PUSH DON'T PUSH during each contraction.  She looked at my MW and asked her what to do.  She whispered in her ear "we know something they don't know..." so the mother would push each time and with each contraction she dilated a centimeter at a time.  Within 4 pushes she was at ten so then everyone started screaming PUSH PUSH PUSH!  My MW thought it was so silly because clearly pushing before she was complete did no harm and was actually helping to dilate her cervix. 

Classic medical mindset.... I don't get it. confused.gif

post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbk21 View Post
I was instructed not to push because there was a "tiny lip of cervix"- I was SO close to 10cm.  I had to try to resist the urge for NINETY MINUTES.  It was pure hell.  ... and apparently I have a lot of stories about the urge to push.  LOL.  It's so interesting to me :-)


Yeah, the old "lip of cervix" thing... that was me too with my first.  My mw said, "well, we can transfer to the hospital for pain killers [insinuating that I couldn't do what I was doing any longer without drugs] or you can try and push while I move the cervix out of the way."  Uh, yeah, tough choice.  But my point is, why not just tell me to give it a little push and see what happened instead of freaking me out that I needed intervention in some way?  I bet the head would have dilated me all the way without her doing anything and then I could have gotten some rest in the latent stage that ended up happening after she "moved my lip of cervix."  Sigh...

 

First timers... that's another thing to be very aware of: the latent stage!!!  If you do NOT feel like pushing after you're fully dilated, that's a latent stage and it is your body's way of giving you a rest.  Don't bend to pressure to push when you don't feel like it and your contractions have petered out.  Let your body rest and tell you when to begin.

post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaimee View Post

 

 

First timers... that's another thing to be very aware of: the latent stage!!!  If you do NOT feel like pushing after you're fully dilated, that's a latent stage and it is your body's way of giving you a rest.  Don't bend to pressure to push when you don't feel like it and your contractions have petered out.  Let your body rest and tell you when to begin.

 

That is so true. I attended a good friend's homebirth last summer. Her first birth. She was completely dilated for hours before she felt the urge to push. Her midwife never said a word, just let her keep laboring until she was ready to push. We were all thinking "Is she ever going to push that baby out?!" but she just wasn't ready yet.
 

 

post #6 of 9
I have never felt the urge to push. Both times my midwife said I was almost 10 and could push, so I did. I just remember wanting the baby out and labor over. I didn't care about waiting for a pushing urge. Hmmm. Something to think about.
post #7 of 9

I was feeling pushy at 8 cm. My nurses were holding me off. My midwife finally said I could push when there was just a lip of cervix and she'd try to move it when I pushed. It worked, but then they put me on my back and I lost the urge to push. I mean, I did it and she came out. I needed the mirror though. My body wasn't telling me how to push anymore. Looking in the mirror helped me a lot at that point since I could see what worked and what didn't. I think I would have pushed better on my side though. That's the position I was in when I was feeling the urge to push.

post #8 of 9

This is one reason that I declined all cervical checks in my last labor (not that my midwives push it).  I simply let my body do the work and I 'pushed' when my body forced me to do it.  I can't imagine resisting that feeling for 90 minutes!  It was like I had no control over it and my DD was born minutes later.
 

I can also agree with Amanda...  With #1 I never had a strong urge to push when I was fully dialated (I did have a cervical check here).  However, I was so tired and DONE that I pushed because I wanted it over with.  Anything to get that baby out!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbk21 View Post

Great resources!  

 

I was just having a discussion about pushing with my MW and she said one time as a student MW she was nervous about the mother feeling pushy b/c the head midwife wasn't there yet and the mama wasn't "complete".  She instructed her to try to breathe through it until the MW arrived.  The mother did so, but then mentioned later that she never reconnected with that urge to push.  It's so interesting to me what happens when we "ignore" our body's urges.  It was so intriguing to my MW that she then completed her research paper on that very topic (feeling pushy and why mothers should go with that feeling regardless of dilation)

 

I was instructed not to push because there was a "tiny lip of cervix"- I was SO close to 10cm.  I had to try to resist the urge for NINETY MINUTES.  It was pure hell.  ... and apparently I have a lot of stories about the urge to push.  LOL.  It's so interesting to me :-)



 

post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abraisme View Post

This is one reason that I declined all cervical checks in my last labor (not that my midwives push it).  I simply let my body do the work and I 'pushed' when my body forced me to do it.  I can't imagine resisting that feeling for 90 minutes!  It was like I had no control over it and my DD was born minutes later. 

 

 



it was awful.  It was hard to tell when it was just the baby pushing on it's own and when I was giving into it.   I am glad I never lost the urge though :-)  

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