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HALP! Feeling weird about my midwifery and connected doula

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone! I am new on here and I need help.


I am 38 weeks pregnant with my first baby and I am having a crisis of faith in my midwifery group! When I went in on Monday, I worked with a midwife I have never seen before. Something about her really put me off - she was nice, but something seemed really odd. She kept giving me extraneous info and wanted to check my cervix, but then went back, and said checking my cervix made no real difference - the whole appointment was kind of bewildering to me. She told me nitrites were showing up in my urine, meaning I had a possible UTI infection. I have no symptoms, which I get, but she prescribed a medicine that no one in their last month of pregnancy should take (it causes regular to severe anemia in to-term babies). Specifically I asked this midwife about the prescription and she said there were no side effects, except I may go into labor a couple days early. When I got the pills and read the drug info, I saw the ALL CAPS warning for pregnant women past 36 weeks. I caught the mistake, called and the midwives I checked in with where nonchalant about the whole thing and told me to call back in a couple days, when my test results could be confirmed via the lab. I did, but not before calling my doula, who works exclusively with this group. She got really firm with me and talked to me like a little kid about how I need to ask one of the midwives to be a team leader and how it's up to me to feel better about the midwives. I told her that if the same midwife who I worked with that day was the one on-call the night I went into labor, I would not use the midwives and I would transfer to the adjoining hospital. She got very upset with me and told me they could not allow me into delivery without the midwives or a separate OBgyn and they'd send me eight miles away to another, crappy hospital. At that point, I was like, fine.


All I want is someone to acknowledge that, holy crap whoa, I should not have been prescribed that medicine! I have no idea why my doula is treating this like I need an attitude adjustment. I really, really want to feel better about this, and to use the midwifery because, up until this point, it's been fine. In fact, some people are amazing over there. And my doula - jeez. I cried on the phone with her and I'm crying now writing this because something feels wrong and I hate people telling me that I'm going to get shipped downstream for being difficult. Has anyone dealt with this before? Any suggestions?

post #2 of 12

Welcome to MDC and congratulations on your pregnancy! Your experience today sounds very difficult. Is there a midwife at the practice that you've connected with in the past? If so, maybe try reaching out to that midwife to discuss your concerns about the practice and your options when you go into labor? If it were me and I had positive experiences previously, I'd probably want to try to address the issue with the practice. Remember, though, you are the client and if you feel uncomfortable continuing with the practice, you always have the choice to leave their care at any point.


It wasn't with a doula, but I have experience what you described with people telling me that I'm going to get shipped downstream for being difficult and it's a terrible feeling. It's ok, not difficult, to advocate for yourself. And that's what you are doing.


With the situation with your doula, if it were me, I would probably take a bit of time (a day or so) and then think about whether I thought this doula was the right match for me. If I felt like she was the right match, then I'd probably write down my concerns (e.g. her reaction today) and email it to her, so that I could say what I wanted to say without interruption and give her some time to digest it before responding. If I didn't feel like she was the right match, then I would politely terminate the agreement with her. As with the midwife practice, you are the client and you can choose whether you want to keep working with her or not.


Sending good wishes your way.

post #3 of 12

Wow.  That's unnerving.  I'd bolt.  That is so unacceptably incompetent.  I'm so so sorry you're being treated this way.

post #4 of 12

Are they CNM's or CPMs?


You can swith to an OB. It might not be easy at this point.


You can also just show at ER in labor, go to L&D and refuse care of the MW you do not like. It is your right and no one, not your MW not the hospital can force a woman in active labor to go anywhere else .

post #5 of 12

I'm so sorry you're having to go through this right now. I had a similar experience with my first baby and a midwife/doula group. Definitely listen to your intuition. Trust is very important and so is your safety (and of course your baby's)! It sounds like the midwife who wrote the prescription has some competency issues that you might be concerned about--don't let them use their "authority" to intimidate you. You have a very valid reason to be concerned and to ask for a replacement and not be treated under her care. Do you have a friend or family member that could be at the delivery to support you? If so, you may not even really need the doula. I've heard great things about doulas, but my experience was not so good and I feel completely unnecessary (for me). Remember, you are the client hiring them and if you don't like them or whatever you have the right to find a midwife and/or doula that's a better fit.

post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thank you all so much! I really appreciate all the suggestions. I'm sleeping on it tonight and emailing my doula tomorrow morning. 

post #7 of 12
Originally Posted by Chelonious View Post

Thank you all so much! I really appreciate all the suggestions. I'm sleeping on it tonight and emailing my doula tomorrow morning. 

Thanks for updating us. I am sending wishes for strength and peace your way as you communicate with your doula and determine what's best for you. You are being a great advocate for yourself!

post #8 of 12
I had a similar experience with an OB prescribing an antibiotic for a UTI at 38+ weeks - sounds like the same medication based on the warnings. I discussed it with a midwife in the group who I trust, and had my mom run it by the OBs in the office where she works, and it sounds like the medicine is actually used at the end of pregnancy if needed despite the Rx warnings. It sounds like the warnings may really overstate the risks. So it may not have been incompetent for the midwife to prescribe it. HOWEVER that does not excuse the weird behavior of your doula and you are NOT difficult for questioning the medication. The midwives should really know better than to prescribe it without a discussion of the risks vs benefits. I hope you're able to resolve this with the practice and your doula before birth.
(I ended up not having a uti once labs came back so I did not need nor take the medication)
post #9 of 12
If you are in the US, a hospital cannot turn you away if you are in active labor, provided they have appropriate facilities. So a hospital without l&d facilities would have to send you elsewhere, but any hospital with l&d would need a compelling reason (like no rooms available in the unit) to transfer you, and transfer would occur at their expense.
post #10 of 12

Chelonious, how are you doing? How did go with contacting the doula? Thinking of you.

post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 

I have my midwife meeting today and I'll be asking for a group leader again. Thanks Eleuthia - I've been hearing that too. I decided to keep my doula - I'm too close, and don't have the energy to seek another one out. Posting on here really helped because I just needed to have someone confirm it was weird!! : )

post #12 of 12

Chelonious, I'm glad to hear that posting here helped. It sounds like you are on the path to figuring out what you need for your birth and you are doing great at advocating for yourself. I hope your appointment with the midwives went well today.

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