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Homebirthers?? Unassisted ladies?

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 

Anyone here having a homebirth or/and thinking of going unassisted?



post #2 of 56

I want to! But I'll tell you what holds me back~


#1. being able to afford a lay midwife without using our insurance

#2. since i carry a history of genetic defects ( a translocation that leads to some really serious genetic mutations) if there is any risk of transfer, i'd prefer to be there to start for the baby. that said, my last birth was an unintenentional unassisted, because it was so short! So I would need the beginning care long enough to do a detailed ultrasound (the only testing we allow, we dont do 1st tri testing usually since a level 2 u/s would pick pretty much every thing up) and then say i was switching care or something, because i def couldnt afford a level 2 without insurance!



post #3 of 56

I have had two home births and am now pregnant with my third.


I'm not sure I can answer your question effectively, because I haven't had any other birth experience but one at home - attended by a midwife.  All I can tell you is that I would never ever have it any other way.  There are no words that can describe it.  Before my first, my hubby wasn't supportive (i.e. he thought I was nuts).  Now, it's the only way for us to birth. 


The environment spawns successful birth experience.  My personality is that I need someone who knows birth to be with me.  Even though I have birth two successfully in a peaceful and non-invasive environment - I don't feel that I know the signs - that something is starting to go wrong.  I feel like I need that.  In that way, unassisted wouldn't work for us.  All my pregnancies were very healthy and expect this one to be the same.


I went through my insurance for her.


However, I am getting some signs that something happened to my midwife - not sure what.  I need to call after the holidays.  However, my hubby and I are on the same page.  I wouldn't go to an ob and have a hospital birth in order to use insurance.  I know it's a waste, but there are some things that are more important than money.  For instance - my health and the health of our baby.  I feel very strongly about that.


I know 2 .5 K - 3K or maybe more is a huge hit.  It is.  Thinking about it, it seems insurmountable.  I keep my thoughts on the most important things.  The priorities in life.  Material things don't matter.  Monthly cell phone fees, ipods, ipads, flat screen TVs - and all the stuff that makes this world a bad place.  Family is the most important and that's what I focus on.  


For instance, what could you cut out of your life saving money over 9, 10 months that will equal the cost of the midwife?   For instance, do you eat lunch out everyday?  Maybe you can cut Christmas or cut one of your electronic addictions?  Downgrade?  It really isn't hard.  Really.


Just some thoughts.

post #4 of 56

Unfortunately, there isnt anything we could cut out. We live right at poverty. We dont have cable. I am in school full time, so I have internet through a grant. We live within our means, without asisstance from the government, but have good private insurance through my husband's work with no copayment or deductable~ 100% free. I don't mind hospital births; I've had 2 natural births without intervention there. I dont use an OB though, only a midwife. My last one was unassisted, we were planning on going to the hospital, but I delivered myself. We live in rural NC, so are about an hour form my hospital.

here the lay midwives run closer to 4-5K. thats a huge chunk of our annual income. And most wont begin prenatal care without 1/2 up front, the rest due before delivery. So there really isnt any way. i could use an apprentice for less, and I might. but if i start care with my midwife, and switch that late, I am afraid of triggering a child welfare visit. They still call for child welfare when you refuse testing at the hospital~ but since we won't allow anything, my family physician writes the orders for me to take with me to the hospital. since she writes the orders, they wont call on us because they know she knows~ the baby never leaves us, period. no bath, no screenings, no medications no vaccines, no nursery, no heel stick no hearing, no PKU, nothing. I dont stay in the hospital either, and my midwife and FP write the orders for us to be discharged immediately ( within 12 hours after birth). So we have a fairly good hospital, they dont require monitoring, IV, etc unless you have a medical condition or are getting pain medication. no pain medication, no intervention :)

I could always plan an oops homebirth like last time ( although admit it wasnt planned so much, but still a great birth!) I've thought about that. Here midwifery is still illegal in your home, so that is one reason our midwives charge so much, and they cant carry all the medication and supplies legal midwives can carry.

On another note, I would be great at a midwifery birth center, but they wont take me~ a new one did open though, so maybe they would? its over an hour away too~ i really doubt i will make it an hour anywhere, last labor was 3 hours start to finish!  this one is even closer together, at 15 mos! I've had 5 previous vaginal births at term; one trisomy 13 birth at 20 weeks that was stillborn. One child also was born with a rare translocation and genetic deletion ( prader willie syndrome and an additional deletion on chromosome 14) that required a 4 month NICU stay and 3 surgeries to save her life.

I am totally for homebirths for normal pregnancies, but recognize for us, not every pregnancy is normal due to the genetic defect I carry that causes trisomies and deletions. so until i know there isnt an issue with the baby, i cant plan on homebirth, as even a lay midwife wouldnt take me if she knew i was a high transfer risk due to fetal distress. for my normal pregnancies, however, I would consider a homebirth.

I will call the other center. Here, if you have a BMI of over 32 they usually dont take you~ they believe obesity means higher risk! Which is silly, as I am on a brewer diet, and have never had GD, high blood pressure, etc. But they refused me last time. Maybe the new center will take me.  Worth a shot!

post #5 of 56

Wow, that seems so unlike midwives to me. With my last pregnancy (a planned homebirth, but switched to a hospital birth with the realization of DS's heart defect) my midwife was more than willing to take payments throughout the pregnancy and through months afterward. And your insurance doesn't cover midwives at all? I know, with military, we had to switch our plan from fully covered to a co-pay plan but after that about 80% of our midwife fees were completely covered.


For me, we will have to rule out any birth defects, since we are at a higher chance of having a child with heart defect since DS2 had HLHS but if we are given the full & clear, I would love to have a homebirth. In El Paso, however, it is very limited for that and I don't think I, or especially my husband, would be ready for an unassisted birth, I would definately like someone there with us.


Our first priority with this baby is it's health, though, so I would never put my own wants of a homebirth before the health of our child.

post #6 of 56
Originally Posted by lisarenee25 View Post


However, I am getting some signs that something happened to my midwife - not sure what.  I


Where do you live? 

post #7 of 56

This will be my 2nd homebirth. my first homebirth was a VBAC. It was amazing...life changing. The moment I held Evangelina in my arms I couldnt wait to have that experience again. 


I work at a midwifes office, so the financial part of it wont be an issue. The midwives that I work with are like sisters to me...so I want them to be there. But that being said, my DH and I would like it to be as unassisted as possible. I want them there in case I need them, but i would really like my DH and the kids to experience this together, and I would like DH and I to deliver the baby. I know him and I feel safe knowing the midwives are there to help guide us.


Last time I labored in the birth pool, and then made my way to my room and delivered on a birth stool. I ended up there because the bathroom was upstairs, and once I got up there, there was NO way i was coming back downstairs to push in the tub. This time we are different house, and the bathroom is on the same floor (hooray!). So I plan on laboring and delivering in the tub. That warm water was HEAVENLY.


post #8 of 56

the reason we cant use insurance is because CPMs are illegal here, and CNMs are legal only with OB overseeing the birth. that said, my midwives in the hospital have been there so long they will even challenge the OB and keep the OB away from true midwife patients. but lay midwives are all illegal~ and homebirth that is attended in NC  is illegal. CMNs are not allowed to attend homebirths, and CPMs are licensed. The CNMs in hospitals take insurance, which is what we've always used. my unassisted in the van i was under their care, we just didnt make it! )

I called the other birth center. They have to meet me and weigh me to decide if they can take me. It an hour and 45 minute drive. so not looking forward to that in labor~ who bets i have another van birth??? lol! If there is nothing wrong with this baby, then we may just plan to stay home with an unattended and accept the risks.


post #9 of 56
Originally Posted by blessedbymore View Post

the reason we cant use insurance is because CPMs are illegal here, and CNMs are legal only with OB overseeing the birth. that said, my midwives in the hospital have been there so long they will even challenge the OB and keep the OB away from true midwife patients. but lay midwives are all illegal~ and homebirth that is attended in NC  is illegal. CMNs are not allowed to attend homebirths, and CPMs are licensed. The CNMs in hospitals take insurance, which is what we've always used. my unassisted in the van i was under their care, we just didnt make it! )

I called the other birth center. They have to meet me and weigh me to decide if they can take me. It an hour and 45 minute drive. so not looking forward to that in labor~ who bets i have another van birth??? lol! If there is nothing wrong with this baby, then we may just plan to stay home with an unattended and accept the risks.


So you're in NC? Whereabout are you? PM me if you want to talk more--I had my HB in NC (Durham) in 2008 and it was an amazing experience. There are a few CNMs who attend homebirths, at least in the Triangle area, and it's perfectly legal for them to do so; my CPM (underground, but amazing) charged us $2,600 for everything (back in '08, mind you, but I bet her fees haven't gone up that much in the 3 years since). We had to pay out of pocket as well, but it was (a) totally worth it, and (b) about the same as our out-of-pocket costs for my insurance-covered hospital birth with #1.


That said, I'm planning another homebirth, and am excited to be in a state (OR) where homebirths are common, all sorts of MWs attend births and are covered by insurance (at least in part), and there are loads to choose from! It's been exciting to actually get to "interview" MWs and contemplate an above-ground HB this time around joy.gif


post #10 of 56

My whole life I had always wanted a homebirth.  But when I was pregnant with my first I started having contractions at 27 weeks.  By 29 weeks, after 2 stays in the hospital, with injections of Terbulatline and IV Magnesium Sulfate, I ended up on bed rest taking Terbulatline pills every 4-6 hours.  Still had contractions every 5 minutes, but thankfully never dialted.  It sucked.  By the time I finally went into labor at 36 weeks, the meds to slow contractions were still in my system, and made labor last 51 hours from start to finish.  I was scared and exhausted.  Got an epidural, episiotomy, the whole works.  I used the same OB with my second pregnancy, but knew a lot more and felt more confident that the pregnancy was advancing "correctly" and wouldn't need as many interventions.  I'd wanted a homebirth, but DH was very afraid.  He's not comfortable with medical stuff and thought he'd feel too guilty if something went wrong.  So we were going to have a natural hospital birth, but I planned in the back of my mind to have an "oops" homebirth if it felt right.  When I went into labor I fully expected it to last as long as my first, so I didn't think I needed to get to the hospital yet.  At one point I realized I was close and told DH "If we don't go now, we're having the baby here" and he just kinda sorta said "Ok, honey".  And DD was born in 2 pushes, unassisted.  (I did have to go to the hospital for a stubborn placenta, and then they wanted to keep DD for jaundice, ugh- hospital wanted to take me prisoner I swear!)  This time around I plan to have no part in the hospital at all.  I will hire a Naturopath/Midwife to be here "just in case" but I really want to be as unassisted and quiet as possible.  I just kind of withdraw into myself, and don't like a lot of talking and distraction when I'm in labor, so I just kind of want to be left alone.  If I need to move, I'll move, if I need to scream, I'll scream, etc.  And I don't have the urge to push until baby is *right there*, so I don't want someone telling me to push just because I'm completely dilated- I'll push when I'm ready.  We don't have health insurance so will be making payments to our midwife.  It's going to hurt us, and I may end up deciding to go unassisted after all because our landlord is talking about possibly letting this house "go", so we may be moving and things are kind of up in the air for us right now.  But either way. homebirth is the best way for me, no question.  Plus my kids and hubby get to be involved as much or as little as they want, in the comfort of our home.  heartbeat.gif   

post #11 of 56

I had a home birth with my second and am planning one with my third.  We switched insurance and they don't offer maternity coverage, so I don't have any unless there is an emergency.   I loved my home birth experience so much more than my hospital one.  I had a great hospital birth with my first and I couldn't believe how much better the home birth was.  Even the appointments are so much better.  I love not having to go into a doctor's office all the time, especially now that I have little ones tagging along with me.

post #12 of 56

I had a homebirth with number two and will again with this babe. I birthed with a midwife and that is the plan again- last time a wonderful CPM, this time a CNM (insurance here covers the CNM and not CPM's) but she seems wonderful. 


I may end up unassisted, though it is not my plan. My last labor was barely two hours from my first "Was that a contraction or indigestion?" contraction to holding my dd in my arms. We are hoping for the midwife to make it, but trying to prepare ourselves in case she does not. At our last birth the midwife was there about 20 min.


My first was a hospital birth, gone terribly wrong, and there is no way you could get me to go back to a hospital to labor unless it was very, very clear that there was no other option. They could have killed my little boy with their negligence at the hospital and while I know that is not the case in every birth, I would rather not deal with any of that ever again. 

post #13 of 56
Me! I have had three births at a free standing birth center and one in the hospital, and am excited to do it at home this time!
post #14 of 56

My last three have been at home with a midwife. I also delivered my baby I lost at home with my midwife at almost 19 weeks.

I'm planning the same thing this time around. I can't imagine having to deliver in a hospital. My first one was a hospital birth that ended in a csection. Pretty much ruined me!

post #15 of 56

First two were completely natural hospital births, doctor told me "you might as well do this at home" and gave me some good information on homebirths (she was hoping to be my midwife, but then I moved 1100 miles away by my third birth!) so I went with a homebirth for #3 and it was AMAZING so most definitely doing it again this time provided I don't end up risking out. Not that I'm likely to, but you never know and I don't want to get my hopes too high knowing how easily I could risk out.

post #16 of 56

I don't know if the hospitals by me are much more supportive or if I expect much less. Our first birth was unmedicated in a hospital in a birthing center style environment with an OB who was AMAZING. I changed docs & hospitals for #2 because it was closer and more convenient for me while working. I ended up with a breech baby who really, truly needed to be a c-section birth, even our chiropractor agreed. I am hoping for a head-down baby this time but plan to deliver in another hospital birthing center with a very VBAC friendly OB/midwife practice. I can identify with wanting to have a homebirth, but I just don't feel like I would want to have one in my home. We have a really narrow house with 4 levels (3 flights of steep stairs) and I don't really see any space where I would want to labor. I would rather have one large hospital room that is my own space with everything I need brought there. I unknowingly labored for a while at home with my first and arrived at the hospital 8cm and fully effaced - was 10cm by the time I was admitted. Sometimes I feel like I should want a homebirth more, but I really don't object to going to the hospital. I can decide if I want my older child to be at the birth - he just has to go for a tour and a "sibling class", but he worries so much I don't know if I would even want him to be there.

post #17 of 56

We homebirthed with #1, and we're planning on homebirth with #2. My labor was fast (3.5 hours total from the first contraction), so we would go unassisted if my midwife couldn't make it here in time (she's an hour away), and both my husband and I would be comfortable with it. In Michigan, homebirths are considered ALEGAL (i.e. neither legal nor illegal), so typically insurance doesn't cover lay midwives/CPM's, only CNM's. However, because I could prove that there weren't any CNM's within driving distance to my house, and this was considered a "gap in coverage", so they ended up covering 90% of our cost after the birth. Because we raise chickens/pigs/cows (and hopefully turkeys next year), our midwife said she'd be open to bartering some of the cost away in return for eggs, meat, etc. Hopefully we can figure it out! In general, I would recommend homebirth for any healthy pregnancy... it's so empowering to remember how incredible the human body is and the miracle of life!

post #18 of 56

I'm planning on a home water birth with a CPM, although who knows how it will go when the time comes.  :)  I really, really hate most doctors and hospitals in our area - there may be some good ones, but I sure haven't met them yet.  From what I have seen so far, Oklahoma seems to be 100% pro-intervention.  In general, I just want to be left alone, so I will gladly refuse any tests that don't make logical sense to me.  That has ticked off many a doctor already even before I got pregnant, lol!  My family thinks I'm crazy for wanting a natural birth, but as I said to them, you know what?  It's not your birth, so you don't get to make the decision.  

post #19 of 56
Would love a home birth with our local CNM, but.. I have to stay pregnant that long before I get too engrossed in the idea. I need to meet her & discuss her backup protocol, since last time I gave birth at 32 w. I am not interested in having the treatment one sometimes gets when showing up @local hospital in labor with no records on file. My last midwife had a system in place and it worked.. even though I had a hospital birth I was allowed to eat & her backup OB was ok.
post #20 of 56
We are planning for our second homebirth with midwives. I'm in Ontario, Canada, so midwives are fully covered by our universal health care. Our last midwifery experience was awesome, I'm hoping to get the same midwife as our primary this time around, but I still have to call the practice. I have met 3 or 4 other midwives from the practice - I think I'd be comfortable with any of them, although some of the younger ones might not be comfortable with me refusing just about every test offered.
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