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Not 100% about my midwife. - Page 2

post #21 of 52

those honestly sound like food for the mom and dad, but something to talk to her about. The midwifes I had for my last birth asked that there was food in the house for everyone attending, including them, and specified that they were vegetarians. I ended up just having some vegetarian frozen meals in my freezer that they ended up not eating, but I ate afterword. for them it was to make sure no one was having a blood-sugar crash toward the end of a long labor if they ended up going to back-to-back births or didn't get the chance to pack something. 

post #22 of 52

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie8681 View Post

 

 

And yes, if it's overnight or, in many hospitals, over the weekend, we do have to bring our food in; cafeterias and restaurants close. It's just part of the work.

 

Yes, but you know when you're going to be working, and there's no emergency that requires you to get there RIGHT AWAY, without possibly even the chance to pack a meal or pick one up on the way. Not the same thing.

post #23 of 52

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by slmommy View Post

 

 

I also thought it was fairly common for women birthing in hospital to sometimes bring treats for the nurses? 

 

I've never heard of this.  It is hard enough to bring all the stuff the laboring MOM needs!  When you are in labor is one of the few times in your life that you really don't have to think of what might be pleasant/ideal/extra special for other people...  When you come back for your six week check up, you could bring a thank you treat for nurses that were great to you, but I can't imagine packing treats in for them during labor!

 

My homebirth midwives didn't ask for a thing.  They were welcome to bring whatever they like to eat for lunch/dinner/etc (as any of us would to a job where we don't have the option to leave the premises) or to share ours as we adore them - but to be given a list of specifics?  That would bug me too.  I don't get a list from anyone else who provides me a service - though I'd certainly offer the guys from the moving company or the teen who mows my lawn a cold drink.  Babysitters or pet/house sitters are welcome to anything in the fridge/pantry but I'd find it odd if they sent me a specific "have this on hand for me" list. 

post #24 of 52

1) I think so. My midwife does this specifically so if a baby comes before she can get there (long drive, at another birth, whatever) that there's no incentive for the parents to say "oh no, don't come, we're fine." Immediate postpartum check ups are important, and apparently there was a death by hemorrhage in my area due to this.
 

2) Yes, feeding midwives and moms is good. I didn't have any specific requests, but the midwives and doula wound up eating most of the leftovers in our fridge after my birth. We of course had no problem with this.

 

3) It depends. If they have a global fee keep in mind they're not charging you extra if you go overdue.

post #25 of 52

 

Quote:

1. Is it customary for midwives to ask for the full payment even if they do not make it to the birth or cannot for extenuating circumstances like a car accident?

 

It depends on the reason.  If they don't make it to the birth because they're at another one, they missed the phone call, or something of that sort, then a partial refund would be due.  I would expect them to have a contingency plan in place (a back-up MW they would call) if they have 2 births at the same time though.  If they don't make it to the birth because you didn't call early enough, or because your birth was precipitous (something out of their control), then yes, they would still expect full payment. 

Quote:
2. Is us customary for a midwife to provide a list of foods for her to have at the birth? Do your midwives ask to provide foods? I guess it's common since to have food on hand for everybody but at the same time for the midwife to pack a lunch too. Mine is asking for wholesome soup, cheese and crackers, nuts, fruit and dark chocolate. Such specifics kind of turned me off!  I'm sorry, but I'm not providing chocolate!

 

Like pps have said, I would clarify this with her.  My MW did include a suggestion list of foods to have on hand.  They are suggestions, and they are intended mostly for *us*, not for her.  But, having something on hand for everyone to eat is a smart idea. 

Quote:
3. Do midwives charge their full fee even if they start seeing a client during their 5'th month? I've missed at least three appointments in the grand spectrum.


Yes.  That is standard.  There might be a few MWs who would be willing to negotiate it with you, but most do not break down their fees that way.  The bulk of the time a MW spends with a mama is in the labor and pp period, not during prenatals. 

 

But I agree with the pps - your gut reaction to these things likely has nothing to do with these specific questions.  Follow your gut, and if the relationship isn't sitting right, whether you can come up with a logical reason or not, find another MW.  I interviewed 8 MWs this pregnancy, 8 MWs last pregnancy and 3 MWs my first pg to find someone who felt right for those circumstances. 

 

post #26 of 52

I am gearing up for my third out-of-hospital birth, and I have never heard of a client's obligation to feed midwives.  At the risk of getting flamed, I actually think it's pretty tacky for midwives to require that.  Every other professional I can think of---even those working unconventional hours in unconventional locations--has a responsibility to make their own provisions for food. 

 

I've had contractors at my home working long, extended hours.  They bring their own lunches/dinners or take breaks to eat out.  Bank employees are stuck at the bank all day, and doctors are stuck in hospitals and clinics for the duration of their shifts.  They're all human, they all need to eat.  But it's rather audacious to require that their own clients--the very people paying them for their goods and services!--provide that food for them.   

 

I have no problem with clients voluntarily providing nibbles to professionals that they appreciate, but it shouldn't be expected of them.  Laboring women, especially, shouldn't feel like they need to go to those heroic, people-pleasing measures.  I understand that some women find it helpful to bake cookies and the like to keep their minds off of labor.  I think that's great, and it's great that they share them.  But....wow.  I hope the OP got some clarification of the midwife's expectations.  OP, if the food is indeed for her, I wouldn't be comfortable, either.   

post #27 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Turquesa View Post

I am gearing up for my third out-of-hospital birth, and I have never heard of a client's obligation to feed midwives.  At the risk of getting flamed, I actually think it's pretty tacky for midwives to require that.  Every other professional I can think of---even those working unconventional hours in unconventional locations--has a responsibility to make their own provisions for food. 

 

I've had contractors at my home working long, extended hours.  They bring their own lunches/dinners or take breaks to eat out.  Bank employees are stuck at the bank all day, and doctors are stuck in hospitals and clinics for the duration of their shifts.  They're all human, they all need to eat.  But it's rather audacious to require that their own clients--the very people paying them for their goods and services!--provide that food for them.   

 

I have no problem with clients voluntarily providing nibbles to professionals that they appreciate, but it shouldn't be expected of them.  Laboring women, especially, shouldn't feel like they need to go to those heroic, people-pleasing measures.  I understand that some women find it helpful to bake cookies and the like to keep their minds off of labor.  I think that's great, and it's great that they share them.  But....wow.  I hope the OP got some clarification of the midwife's expectations.  OP, if the food is indeed for her, I wouldn't be comfortable, either.   


I agree. Especially things like dried fruit, nuts and chocolate which are pretty easy to keep as part of your kit since they tend to have a pretty long shelf life.

OP, have you been able to clarify with her whether the food is for her or you?

ETA - oh and on the subject of food gifts for hospital staff. It is not unheard of here although I wouldn't say it happened frequently but it is *always* given at the end of the person's stay not at the beginning so there is no question of " getting better service".
post #28 of 52

1. mine charges the same wether she is there or not.  And that is fine with me.  She would send a backup to me- but I have told her if it is a new mom or me- go with the newbie obviously :)

2.  I have a list of little snacks stuff on my birth prep list too- and it is for me.  But why would you not want to feed her?  I would be more put out if my mw left- but then again I live in the middle of no where- so that is pretty much out of the question.  After DS3 was born DH cooked everyone a big meal in celebration while the midwives took care of the baby and I.  I even try to make sure that they have eaten during my prenatals...

3.  same charge at 8 weeks or 40 weeks.

post #29 of 52
I guess for me it's the way it's worded in the OP that I find offputting. I'm fine with offering a drink and a snack or even lunch at antenatal visits. I agree with PPs that it can help develop the relationship and create a more relaxed atmosphere.

My problem was the specific requirements on the list - soup, dried fruit, chocolate etc. If those are just suggestions with the implication being "I don't expect a freshly cooked three course meal" then ok but if it's a list of requirements then no, not ok with that.

And I still think that there are plenty of mon-perishable foods that a midwife ( and I am one BTW) could keep as part of their kit to throw in the car with everything else. I personally would not be comfortable * requiring* food from a client.
post #30 of 52

i'm a labor assistance massage therapist and i always pack my own food, such as dried fruit, several packets of oatmeal, granola bars, and 2 bottles of gatorade.  if someone provides hot food, well thats a great bonus!  but i never want to eat anything heavy anyway.  i think midwives/doulas who have special diet requirements should especially be the ones providing their own meals.  so much prep goes into a home birth and making special meals ahead of time, especially if the mom already has kids to worry about, is just asking too much. 

post #31 of 52

I do consider myself a guest in my clients homes, as far as food goes. Sometimes I am at a womens home for 2 or 3 days. It's not a hospital where I  take a break & go to the cafeteria, & many of my births are way out in the country, w no 24 hr restaurants nearby. While I  don't expect a laboring mom to wait on me, I do expect there will be nutritious food for all in attendance, I have gotten terrible headaches in the past from not eating at births, so  I have added "nurtitious foods" to the supply list. I never know where I'll be or how fast I have to leave for a birth, so it is impossible for me to have a 3 day supply of food always handy. I do keep snacks in the  car though.
  I never accept money for work I haven't done yet, but do expect a $25- $100 payment at each (or at least most) visits (depending on how far a drive it is) so that about half is paid up by the birth. With the remaining due at the birth or pp visit. A lot of midwives due expect to be paid in full before the birth though. I think that is more the norm than how I handle it.

I do expect full payment even if they come to care late, since we have the same amt of preparing to do, just less time to do it in.  If they have been getting GOOD quality care (not just typical ob 5 minute visits) from someone else who's teaching/care I trust I do not have to unteach or reteach, then I give them a discount for the care they already received.
I do expect to be paid in full, even if I miss the birth, through no fault of my own, But usually forgive the last half if they end up  with a hospital bill to pay. Not because I don't deserve it. After all, getting complications to the hospital in a timely manner is an important part of my job. Rather because I know how devastating a hospital bill can be! (it took us well over 10 yrs to pay for our baby who spent 4 days in NICU!)   If I miss a birth because I am at another birth, then the remaining money goes to the midwife that covered for me.
 

post #32 of 52

JMO... It strikes me as one of those things, like wedding gifts.  According to Miss Manners (with whom I agree), as a bride/groom, you're never really supposed to expect a wedding gift-- that's not why you're getting married nor why you are inviting people to share in your joy.  At the same time, as a guest, if you feel so emotionally moved to attend a wedding, you should feel similarly moved to give a gift (dollar amount completely unimportant, could be a personal item of $0 intrinsic value, etc.-- but something).

 

With HB MWs and food...  I think it's A) highly tacky for a MW to demand food (tone is everything), especially really specific foods (outside of maybe mentioning one is vegan, kosher, allergic to peanuts), but also B) kind of inconsiderate (under normal circumstances) not to provide something for the MW, somehow, especially during a labor longer than 6-8 hours (which cannot necessarily be predicted).  Just like a bride shouldn't demand or even really expect a present (imagining it's a guest's obligation), but a guest who brought or gave nothing would be kind of out-of-line, too.    

 

And although I agree I'd most definitely chafe at anything close to a demand for highly specific foods, I also agree with PP that this is not like most jobs, where people can take some sort of break or at least have access to a vending machine or something.  I consider the extra, what?, $5, 10, 20+ and 2 extra minutes at the grocery store to grab peanut butter, bread, apples, whatever, a part of my MW's fee, in a way.  shrug.gif


Edited by buko - 5/4/12 at 3:04pm
post #33 of 52

As far as the food list goes, I would find it a little insulting that the midwife would feel the need to tell me that there should be food in my home. I know the area I live in and how close restaurants are, and I'm already aware that humans need to eat. If they want something really specific they'll bring it or order out. Maybe I'm getting a little hormonal but I don't think I would like that either. If it were worded differently like "in the past I have found that some convenient foods to have on hand for family and attendants include..." I wouldn't mind. I wouldn't like to be "required" to have a certain kind of chocolate for her though, unless she explained why that is important to have at births.

post #34 of 52

Marlene's post DID open my eyes a bit and make a decent point.  I live in an urban area where you're never far from dozens of eateries.  I'm working with a large OOH midwifery practice in a MW-friendly state with plenty of back-up help.  So there's a lot that I can take for granted here. 

 

I STILL think that if you're a midwife and know that you'll be on call for a given week, or that one or more of your clients are at term, it's not unreasonable to keep a cooler well stocked with goodies so that you're ready to take responsibility for your own needs in this area.  I hold to that.  But I can also see where feeding yourself would present challenges if you're serving a rural area or working in a state in which midwifery is illegal and you have to operate underground. 

 

The reason I feel strongly about this is pretty simple.  I know first-hand what all goes into prepping for a homebirth.  It's the third trimester, so you're huge, moving slowly, and running around town--often with other small children--finding used towels, sheets, and other necessities on that shopping list that your midwife gave you.  Many women feel pressure to keep their house clean for the Big Event, (and some MWs request it!), but it's hard to have it CONSTANTLY immaculate for an event with an unknown and unpredictable "start time." 

 

Then AFTER the baby is born, far too many women are under pressure to entertain all of the extended family and other visitors who crash in on her.  I'm gearing up for my third baby now, so I've drawn some much better boundaries.  But to this day, my blood pressure rises when I remember having my first baby.....all of the impromptu family reunions happening under my roof during those crazy post-partum days.  It didn't help that everybody's definition of "helping" me was holding the baby, (um, thanks, but that's the one thing that I CAN actually do eyesroll.gif).  Meanwhile, they'd leave the house trashed, and I'd be trying to pick up after them while praying that my stitches didn't tear as I stooped down to clean up their crap! irked.gif

 

I'm starting to wander here, so I'll get to the point: If a MW requests little nibbles and noshes because there's absolutely no other way to get food, that's one thing.  But she should have a LEEEEETLE bit of empathy for what her pregant and post-partum clients are *already* going through.  With all of the stresses of labor, childbirth, and post-partum recovery, she shouldn't expect her client to go to heroic lengths to play hostess for her. 

post #35 of 52

As many previous posters have said, I would guess that this has more to due with a poor connection with the midwife, than the specifics around the care.  If I am comfortable with someone, and we have a good relationship I am likely to hear "wholesome soup, cheese and crackers, nuts, fruit and dark chocolate" as "just keep something simple and nutritious around, but don't worry about a homecooked meal".  If I am not comfortable or put off by them in general I'll hear "here's my outlandish requests for you, better get me my snacks or I'll be upset".  I would not be surprised to find out that in the past she's encountered both a scenario where there was nothing nutritious to eat, and a scenario where the mom went way overboard preparing extravagant food.

 

My midwife listed "snacks for midwives, birth-attendants, doulas, and guests" on the list of birth supplies I should gather.  There's nothing specific.  I personally feel comfortable providing a meal to the birth team, and it would make me happy to be able to do so.  That being said, I would also expect the birth team to plan ahead for their own needs to some extent.  I read a post somewhere about a midwife requesting coffee.  We don't drink coffee in my house, but if I knew my midwife really liked coffee, I might try to have some instant coffee on hand.  If she wants a latte, well I hope she knows where Starbucks is.  My home visit ended up having to be pushed back a couple of hours, and was right at dinnertime.  When my midwife arrived we had just sat down to eat dinner.  It felt really good to me to be able to invite her into our home, and have her sit down to a meal with us.  Birthing is an intimate experience, and although I am paying her, I think there's more to it than a normal money for a service relationship.  It's an interesting crossover between a personal and professional relationship.  I know way more about my midwife's personal preferences, and personal habits than I would about a doctor.  Not in an unprofessional way, but we have spent months building a relationship.  

 

post #36 of 52

If she misses the birth because you can't get ahold of her is one thing. If she is on the way or her backup is on the way, and the baby comes, she will still be available to you for all of the immediate postpartum and newborn stuff. This is how she makes a living. Sometimes birth is fast. 

 

As far as food, you aren't on call for one week, you are on call for five weeks, or longer if needed. Keeping a cooler stocked makes no sense to me. Yes, I can have food for myself, and do try to pack snacks and things, but if I quietly grab a peanut butter and jelly sandwich at three in the morning after being up for 27 hours, I would hope that no one would mind. I don't have anything on my birth kit list, and honestly I think it is weird that your midwife is so particular, but who knows. You should ask her why she is so specific. 

 

And the fee is the same regardless of when a family comes in. Our responsibilities don't change. However, there are always exceptions as needed. 

post #37 of 52
Such specifics about food are a bit silly.. I would be gracious and have something but you should be concerned first about your labor! Not what the midwife eats. Also it is customary to pay the prenatal care fee. She has made a 24/7 commitment to you and it's not her fault if you don't keep your appointments. Also she has time and education that need to be resprcted. If you went to a dentist you would expect to pay. Midwives, CNM , have 7-8 years of education respect that.... It's very difficult to practice and have the $ thing as an issue for a midwife. Also if she can't make it she would pay for qualified back up. I would think. Finally I'm not sure why this is happening between you two. Please talk to her and clarify all this with your midwife or her office mgr. so often I see comments and remarks on this site and the midwife deserves a chance to explain. Most of the time it can easily be resolved.
Happy Birthing. -midwifery advocate.
post #38 of 52

if you're not 100%, choose a different midwife.  

post #39 of 52

Please,Please,Please, go to naval gazing midwife. Her website is a refreshing breath of truth. Midwives are not accountable to anyone...especially read the questions to interview.You should get a reasonable refund when appropriate.3000. is way way way tooooooo much to pay a beginning midwife. She needs an senior midwife at all births. The best sales ladies are not not not the best midwives. We've all got to think again...myself included.I've attended1000+ home births and always fed myself, thank-you. But there are so much more important questions.Love you new families...may God bless and prosper you.

post #40 of 52

Food For the Midwife

 

I take real issue with this.

 

Your midwife is not sitting at home, waiting for you to call when you go into labor. She likely could have been at another birth, for many hours, been at prenatals all day, visiting a postpartum family or a dozen other scenarios. A midwife is not like a construction worker at your home or a banker or any such thing. She lives her life on call, 24 hours a day. She does not get 8 hours of sound sleep every night, nor do laboring women labor and birth from 9-5. Comparing a professional who works on call (midwife) to a professional 9-5er (banker, construction worker) is a very poor comparison, at best.

 

I find it cold and shocking that some of you feel that it is rude for a midwife to request food be available to her during your labor. (I do however understand that in some locales it is not common practice for a midwife to request food.) It is a courtesy and just the right thing to do for a pregnant woman to have something nutritious available to her midwife. What if she has been at another labor for 12 hours and comes straight to your labor and is there for 12 hours? Do you really expect her to not eat, or eat dried nuts and fruit for 24 hours? Many towns do not have drive-thru fast food open 24 hours. Many women would feel abandoned if their midwife left them while in labor to go get food. Many women labor so quickly that a midwife does not have time to stop for food between births. Many women live very far from any sort of amenities.

 

How hard is it to have some nutritious frozen burritos or cans of soup for your midwife? Those can be bought weeks before your due date. I have hired many different midwives over the years and most of them do request some sort of nutritious food be available to them. I have never been insulted, rather, I was pleased for the opportunity to feed them something they find satisfying and enjoyable.
 

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