So apparently the hospital I'm planning on delivering at is actually pretty supportive of natural labors, water therapy, etc. I had a lot of issues that I've been bugging doctors, nurses, former midwives who had priviliges there, etc. and they've all been reassuring. Sure, it's still a hospital birth, so there will be some compromises that I'm not thrilled about, but it is what it is, a hospital birth, and I'm comfortable with my choice to deliver there after switching from a hb practice.
I've heard repeatedly that while no, they can't "technically" force you into the position, something like 99% of vaginal deliveries in the hospital happen in a knee-to-chest, feet in stirrups kind of a position, and none of the doctors really deviate from that. What??? I was going to be fine with the whole, OK, DH can't catch, OB has to... well freaking fine, I don't want it like that, but OK, your hospital, your rules. But to think that I would have to do the feet in stirrups with an audience of nurses, OB, etc. for my crotch, while I'm on my back, etc... the hell? Nooooo.... Please no. It was bad enough with DS when the otherwise supportive midwives encouraged me to be on my back to push, but even that wasn't in stirrups/ breaking the bed down/ etc. This seems to me totally humiliating and torture. If there was a problem and that was the only way I could safely deliver, fine, that's great, baby's safety and all that. But for a normal birth? DD was hands and knees in complete privacy - it seems like too huge a jump for me to make mentally to go from that sort of delivery to this.
I'm whining, aren't I?