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Mothering › Groups › June 2012 Birth Club › Discussions › AHH! My doula dropped a (pleasant) bomb on me today. Need advice.

AHH! My doula dropped a (pleasant) bomb on me today. Need advice.

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

So anyway, background: We were planning a hospital birth because it was significantly cheaper than either a home birth or birth center birth, which our insurance will not cover. My daughter was born at a freestanding birth center (we had no maternity insurance with her and this was our cheapest option), and I was attended by a midwife and an apprentice midwife. That apprentice midwife is now a certified midwife and agreed to be my doula at the hopsital as a personal favor. I like her a lot and had a really awesome experience in general with my daughter's birth.

 

Today we met to go over my birth plan and our contract expectations and she very graciously offered to attend me at home for a significantly reduced fee. I'm not sure what went into her decision to offer this, but she and her partner (who I think is a CNM or possibly a registered nurse) are just setting up their own practice. I can't tell you how overwhelmed I am. This would be about the same cost out of pocket as our hospital birth would be.

 

I've spent most of the day near tears/in tears because I thought an out-of-hospital birth was completely out of reach for us this time around. I do want a homebirth. I am letting myself admit that now. DH is starting to get excited about the possibility as well.

 

Things holding me back:

 

- I do really like my OB, I will likely see him in social situations in the future, and I don't want to piss him off.

- Our families would FREAK OUT if we had a homebirth. Hiding it from them is not an option. We respect them too much to lie, even if it causes discord.

- What if we end up at the hospital anyway? Then we've way overspent our budget. Not likely as my daughter's birth was uneventful, but still.

- I have a superficial (not DVT) blood clot in a varicose vein in my leg (caused by pregnancy). I'm not sure if this is a risky thing or a minor thing in labor  (I do know nothing can be done about it until after I give birth and it is not dangerous immediately), I need to ask more questions.

 

I do think I will have trouble getting the birth I want in the hospital. If I do get it I will probably have a fight on my hands, and I don't want my son's birthday to be stressful.

 

I still need to go over my birth plan with my OB and also at the hospital tour before I make any decisions. That will probably be the clincher. My doula has agreed to doula for me no matter what decision we make, and she is very cool about the whole thing. So I'll have her with me no matter what.

 

Any thoughts or advice? I feel like something exploded in my brain. Just to have the option of an out of hospital birth is such a gift.

post #2 of 8

I'd follow my heart and damn what anyone else thinks or feels about it. That my sound harsh but it is YOUR birth and YOUR baby. If you and your husband both want this that is really all that matters. <3 Good luck in making your decision, it sounds like you have an awesome woman to be there with you either way. :-) 

post #3 of 8

Wow-- as overwhelming as it must feel, that's a really beautiful decision to have to make <3  I totally agree with the PP and I would talk with your doula about your concerns re the clot... that would probably clarify that piece.  The rest is definitely what feels best to you. 

 

For me, I would probably go with the homebirth even though there might be discomfort with my OB and the family.  A close friend of mine is an OB and when we decided to do homebirth for DS, I sat down with her and admitted I was nervous about her response and judgement.  It was an awkward conversation, but I felt SO much better afterwards.  With this birth, we're planning an HBAC, and my sister is a high-risk L&D nurse who is really concerned with our decision.  She's my best friend and it's definitely caused me some anxiety-- but again, I've had several frank discussions with her and even though she doesn't get my choices, she loves me and respects my decisions.  Even if she didn't understand, I still would do what I felt drawn towards, because the regret and resulting bitterness I would feel if I wasn't true to my self would taint my relationships far worse than threatening others' views.  KWIM? 

 

It does sound like you'll have an amazing woman supporting you no matter which way you go-- so congrats on that.  I hope you have a beautiful birth :)
 

post #4 of 8

Your plan is good- you need to talk to your OB and go on the tour, and once you have all the info you can make a decision more easily. It's good to have choices!  This is a hard one, though! I hate that money always comes into play.

post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thank you all for your responses. I've already found out that the hospital I was planning on delivering at is not known for being the most mama/baby friendly, which I had no idea of beforehand. So I'm going to talk to my OB about possibly delivering elsewhere. I do have to make a decision by the 20th, though. I'm going to call him tomorrow and see if I can try to tour both hospitals before then.

 

I hate that money always comes into play too. Technically, we have the cash for me to have a homebirth with no discount, but then our savings (basically our emergency fund) would be absolutely damaged beyond easy recovery. We take financial responsiblity very seriously and it just wasn't a sacrifice we were willing to make. Possibly for a first child, when everything from how you'll handle labor to how big you grow your babies is so uncertain, but definitely not for our second. I know there are people who think homebirths are worth extreme financial sacrifices but we just aren't those people, and it would have crippled us in many ways for a long time. That's why this offer has been such a great blessing for us!


As all of you have mentioned, she is an amazing woman and I'm so lucky to know her. stillheart.gif

post #6 of 8

Honey, you cannot wipe out your savings, I TOTALLY get that. I would sacrifice a lot of things for homebirth, but I would not sacrifice financial security. Hells no to that one.

 

I'm so happy for you...I know it's overwhelming, but man, to have your options opened up like this is amazing. I would HB if I were you. Your OB will get over it. Your family will, too. So long as you and DH are on the same page, I say you've got to take advantage of this unbelievable stroke of luck!

Having a frank conversation with the people who don't like this decision is the only thing you can do....after that, it's really up them to decide how they feel about it and whether they can be adult enough to move on and support you.

 

Were I you, the only thing I'd want more information about is the clot in your leg. That is something I would want to be **crystal clear** about no matter where I was giving birth.

Congratulations! I'm SO excited for you!
 

post #7 of 8

Can you work out a payment plan with the midwife so that paying her doesn't empty out your savings?

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

Actually that is the wonderful part about it. With the discount she is offering we wouldn't have to make payments, we could just give her cash now and have it be relatively affordable. We still haven't made a decision though!

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