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something that bothers me.

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

i really dont appreciate it when people say "i know you really want a natural birth but be prepared for anything" first of all, how do you really need to get prepared for anything OTHER than natural? all else is kind of forced on you...how would i prepare for a c section? or induction? secondly, it's always those that have opted for interventions and it just makes me feel like they think their way is better and that it's silly to EXPECT a natural birth. and im tired of that outlook. just venting...

post #2 of 27

This was part of my recent argument with my older brother.  His wife is going into the hospital and I am having a home birth.  He told me I'm an idiot for thinking I can do it naturally, that I'm not strong enough, that there is no way I can do it without medical professionals (I am planning a UC, but I don't think he would even consider a midwife a "medical professional").  How do you express to people with that sort of arrogance that our bodies are MADE FOR THIS?  Birth is not a disease, it's not something that needs to be done with doctors around.  Don't get me wrong, I don't think it is wrong to have a hospital birth, with doctors, or whomever you feel comfortable having there.  I just think that all births are different and all women (and partners) are comfortable with different situations.  I also feel like going outside of the norm (especially here in the USA) is looked at as insanity.  I almost feel like people think I'm just trying to be brave and "stick it out" so I can brag?  I don't know, that is often the feeling I get from people when I tell them I'm having a home birth (and I even live in a very open community on the west coast with lots of natural hippie types). 

 

I tend not to discuss my birthing plans with anyone because of the judgements that instantly get thrown at me.  I tell people I'm having a home birth and then leave it at that.  It's not anyone's business but my own.  I just wish people would keep their (unsolicited) opinions to themselves!  Telling a woman her body isn't strong enough to do the one thing it was truly made to do is beyond my scope of thinking.

post #3 of 27
Thread Starter 

i feel the same way! just gotta turn down the volume and go with your instinct. and im pretty sure it's factually evident that natural birth IS an instinct ;)
 

post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 

i AM high risk in a lot of way so people really think im diseased and weak. i really only need help with my pregnancy though...nothing about my birth is high risk. i would love to have UC or homebirth but i feel too unstable because of my history. i dont like what hospitals have done to birth but there is a really great one near by so i feel lucky. i also kind of like hospitals...in a weird way. i like the smell? ugh, i feel like a sell out even saying that :P but i do...so i dont *mind* it as much. and i feel like i can exercise my rights with the midwives at this hospital. we will see! i know what i can expect though and interventions aren't even crossing my mind. because that is pointless.

post #5 of 27

Yeah, I find that a lot of people say those types of things about anything that we choose to take control over that isn't "mainstream", especially when it comes to taking better care of ourselves.  I see it a lot with food - we eat healthy so that we feel good, and people act like it's a bad thing since we aren't doing it because we *have* to.  It used to be that way with exercise, but enough people started doing it and it became obvious that people should be doing it, so perceptions have changed.  I think too, that some people that have attempted something and failed want to give you an "out" if you fail too.  They have BTDT and known how "hard" things can be, so they want you to be "realistic", but also not feel guilty if things don't go the way you planned.  Some people are just a holes though.  I think that as more and more people take control of their births and are successful, the more "mainstream" it will become.  Just like breastfeeding and so many other things that used to be "fringe" and are now recognized to be good and even normal winky.gif

 

It bugs me too, but I feel a kind of silent strength when I succeed where people thought I would fail.  I don't have to say "I told you so", and I'm not doing it to compare myself to others, more so that I am finally at the point in my life where I am proud to make my own choices for my own reasons and be content with things.  And hopefully others will be inspired by that. 

post #6 of 27

"How do you prepare for an unnatural birth?"

 

You have the option of being an educated consumer and an active participant in your birth experience whether you have a planned UC or an emergency c-section.

 

I absolutely agree that most women are just fine giving birth without medical assistance and I am planning a natural birth at a free standing birth center.....  but if something happens and my plans change, I want to still have a sense of control and be able to make educated decisions about my baby and my care. These decisions might be difficult ones, and they might be decisions we never would have made if scenarios were different, but they are nevertheless our decisions and our voices.

 

So, with that in mind, DH and I have done the following to prepare:

 

  • We identified our back-up hospital and have mailed them pre-admittance forms so we can just walk right in (or be brought right in).
  • We're doing a hospital tour so if we end up being transferred we will know where to park, where in the building to go, and I'll be familiar with the setting.
  • We've written a few birth plans that take my requests and priorities into consideration for each scenario. (After all, even if I'm in the hospital instead of the birth center, there are things I can choose that will increase my chances of successful vaginal delivery, and even if I need an emergency c-section, there are requests I can make for my own care or my infant's care that will facilitate bonding/breast-feeding, as well as my own recovery).
  • We've also looked at our maternity/paternity leave time and talked about necessary adjustments if I need a c-section instead of vaginal birth.

 

Most importantly:

 

  •  I accept that I am not a failure if alternative paths become necessary.

 

I've known too many mothers/friends who have identified themselves as "Natural Birthers" and then hated themselves and considered themselves failures because they had emergency c-sections or had to be transferred. Whether it was necessary intervention or intervention that *maybe* could have been avoided, they are bitter, angry, blame themselves and others, and are simply traumatized.

 

It made be very sad to see my friends this upset at the world and at themselves, and I decided early on with my pregnancy that I don't want to be like that if things don't go 100% as I envision them.  So I remind myself (and my husband) that giving birth is not a horse-race, it's not always about being in control, and it's not about being "woman enough" for natural birth. Yes, we (DH and I) want a natural birth and believe very, very strongly in its benefits for baby and mother, but the focus is on bringing baby (and mother) through the experience safely... and happily.... no matter what unexpected things pop up.

 

As I climb off my little soapbox, here are three wishes for all of us:

 

  • May we all have the births we envision and receive support and encouragement for our choices, whatever they might be.
  • If things don't go 100% as planned, may we still find peace and joy (and health) in the birthing process!
  • And in the meantime--- may way all have earplugs to ignore the offensive opinions from other people.....       ; )

 

<3


Edited by Sweet Huck - 3/15/13 at 3:07pm
post #7 of 27

So well put, Sweet Huck. I think there are definitely things that can (and, I dare say, should) be done to prepare us for the possibility that things might not go 100% as we plan or envision. You mentioned a lot of the practical side of things, which is a really good point. We can educate ourselves about what a c-section and subsequent recovery actually entails so that it's not completely foreign and scary should that become a reality. I'm also working through Mindful Birthing which addresses the element of wanting to control or plan the birth experience, and emphasizes being present in the moment and focusing on the birth experience that we are having rather than the ideal birth experience that we envisioned.

 

Sorry if this is jumbled or full of typos, my 3 year old is currently hanging from my arms and trying to squeeze herself between my face and the computre screen,

post #8 of 27

I agree that Sweet Huck explained it very well.  As a doula and a pregnant woman, I think being prepared for anything is one of the most important things you can do.  You can control how you prepare, but you can't control birth.  I agree it would be very rude and inconsiderate to say or imply that a woman cannot handle a natural birth or that she shouldn't even try, but that's not how I see the comment the OP is bothered by.  I think it is a good idea to understand possible complications or interventions so that you can make an informed choice if the time comes.  I imagine it would be easier to think about options and decide what you would be more comfortable with ahead of time instead of trying to make those decisions when you are in labor.  It doesn't mean you will have to use any of those interventions, but it's good to understand.  I feel it is best to be open-minded and ready for anything because I think it can help prevent regret and blaming yourself and generally being unhappy with your birth experience.  I would hate for any woman to feel she failed or her body failed her during birth.  I would prefer a woman feels good about what happened even if it wasn't part of the plan.  I think people feel better when they feel like they were able to make their own decisions rather than have them forced upon them.     

I have placenta previa.  I am going to do everything I can to prepare for a natural vaginal birth, but if my placenta doesn't move, I will need a c-section.  So I will also prepare myself for the possibility of a c/s. 

People often say that the only thing that matters is that you have a healthy baby and healthy mom at the end.  That is true, but the way you get there DOES matter.  It matters to your mental health and well-being.  It can be very dismissive to tell a mom who had a traumatic birth that it's fine because everyone was healthy in the end.  I think it's ok to feel what you feel about what happened and to mourn the loss of your ideal birth.

post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 

preparing and envisioning a labor and deliver that i DONT want is much different than educating myself...im very educated in interventions and medically necessary changes in a birth plan. i am high risk and have exhausted every pregnancy book i can get my hands on. that doesn't mean that im going to "prepare" for a labor that i dont want. im preparing for the labor that i DO want and anything else that comes along will be pretty much out of my control anyway...

having every person point out that birth NEVER goes as planned and that i should prepare for other options is really counter productive. i will just do what i did with my son and continue to envision my birth exactly how i want it. and keep my ear plugs handy. i guess a lot of the other bullet points dont really pertain to us since i will already be in a hospital et cetera. im just tired of hearing it.

post #10 of 27
Hey jellybean, my post wasn't meant at all to target you. it was just a general response to the excellent question of how to, and if, to, prepare for other things. I think you're doing a great job envisioning your birth and agree that the vast majority of your energy should be spent doing that. keep on trucking, mama.
post #11 of 27
Thread Starter 

thank you sweet huck :) im confused with the replies and if they're implying that im doing something wrong with not educating myself with interventions. that's not the case. and that's not what i was saying to begin with. im just saying it's sort of silly to tell a pro-natural birthing mom that she should prepare and expect for things to not go that way. that just doesn't make sense to me. it's hard to explain what im getting at and i dont think im doing a very good job.

post #12 of 27

In my reading of the previous replies, and based on my knowledge about the posters themselves, I definitely don't think that any of us are trying to imply that you are doing anything wrong or that you are failing to educate yourself about the potential complications that could arise during labor. I'd be willing to bet that most of us have encountered the attitude that you mentioned in your original post--those who have elected from the get-go to opt for interventions and then almost condescendingly advise others not to expect a natural birth. That annoys me to no end.

 

However, when I was pregnant with my first and planning/talking about my plans for a natural birth I also got some advice from others who had planned for a natural birth and ended up with epidurals or c-sections for various reasons (my aunt had been very involved in the Bradley method and ended up with an emergency c-section after 20+ hours of hard labor!) and they often give the advice that you should plan for your ideal birth, but be "prepared" for the possibility that it might not go as you're planning and envisioning. I think that some of this group might be bitter that their own birth experience wasn't what they'd wanted, but I do think that there is wisdom in heeding the advice to educate ones self. Still, the advice can come across as discouragement and that's annoying.

 

I try to remember that most people just really like to talk about themselves and their own experiences, or to relate the experiences of others to their own. And when I look at it that way I can see that their advice is much more about them than it is about me, if that makes sense.

 

For example--when DH and I were talking about TTC #2 we decided that a Summer baby would make the most sense because of my work schedule, so took June 2013 and counted backwards ~40 weeks and planned to go all-out trying in September of 2012. I had my IUD taken out in late June with the idea that it could take a few months for my cycles to return. I shared some of this info with close friends, and those who had suffered from infertility warned me not to get my hopes up too high that our planning would go as we envisioned, because some of them spent 18+ months TTC. I understood where they were coming from and appreciated the wisdom in not putting all our eggs in that one basket, or not getting too attached to the idea that our planning would pan out. But still, it was annoying and discouraging to be warned over and over again.

 

So when our plan DID actually pan out, (I'm due June 22nd!) I then had some people warning me not to be too sure about that June baby, because THEIR babies had been born weeks or months early. And so, you know, a due date isn't a guarantee. While I realize that preterm labor IS a possibility and sometimes happens to women who are not labeled high-risk (and I have tried to educate myself a little bit about pre-term labor and whatnot) But STILL, is it really necessary to rain on my parade by insisting that babies sometimes come early? I know that isn't really their intention, but that's how it feels sometimes. And I can definitely relate that to the feeling of being told to plan for a birth that you don't want--although I know that having a premature baby is always a possibility, why on earth would I devote my energy and attention to "preparing" for something like that? So I just try to remind myself that these comments probably have very little to do with me and my pregnancy and much more to do with the fact that most people like to talk about their own experiences. Sometimes that helps me feel less annoyed by the comments. Then again, I'm a hormonal, sleep-deprived pregnant lady. So it's still pretty darn annoying, lol.

post #13 of 27

I think SweetHuck and kitteh have both offered excellent perspective and food for thought.  I agree in thinking that nobody here is trying to discourage you, jellybean, from planning for the birth you desire.  In fact, I really believe that visualizing and affirming the birth we want is vital in preparing ourselves.  I can also see how sometimes well-meaning family and friends can come across as nay-saying when they express their "What if..." sentiments.  For me, I intend to prepare myself for the natural, drug-free, intervention-free birth that I would like to experience - through classes, visualization, and meditation. I will also take some time to consider the "what ifs" and include my wishes/priorities for those scenarios in my birth plan (as SH mentioned above).  Having my bases covered and my intentions clear should those less-than-ideal circumstances arise is important to me.  Once I take the time to make those considerations and make them clear on paper, I think I will then set that plan B aside, and put my energy and intention fully into my plan A, and trust that my body will do what it is built to do!

post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by pokeyAC View Post

 

People often say that the only thing that matters is that you have a healthy baby and healthy mom at the end.  That is true, but the way you get there DOES matter.  It matters to your mental health and well-being.  It can be very dismissive to tell a mom who had a traumatic birth that it's fine because everyone was healthy in the end.  I think it's ok to feel what you feel about what happened and to mourn the loss of your ideal birth.  GAH I am dealing with this one every day. We have a new woman who works in my office. She could be my mother age wise and she has 4 girls so she feels comforable giving me advice. eyesroll.gif lucky me. But anytime I mention what is going on she says "All that matters is a healthy baby." She doesn't know me well enough yet to know my stance on birth. She had 4 c-births and my guess that is her coping mechanism for her expereinces. She said "sure having a nice birth would be a bonus but it isn't important".... I'm her supervisior so I grit my teeth and comment how I believe both can be true and important. Just like if a woman has a c-birth I believe she is capable of feeling both happy she and baby are "healthy" as well as disappointed in her birth experience. We are complex creatures and I believe we are capable of feeling more than one thing at once.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jellybean1989 View Post

thank you sweet huck :) im confused with the replies and if they're implying that im doing something wrong with not educating myself with interventions. that's not the case. and that's not what i was saying to begin with. im just saying it's sort of silly to tell a pro-natural birthing mom that she should prepare and expect for things to not go that way. that just doesn't make sense to me. it's hard to explain what im getting at and i dont think im doing a very good job.

I think many of the previous posters (and myself though I haven't posted yet) just got caught up in wanting to engage in this interesting concept and share their own sides. I think perhaps the "just venting" might have gotten side swiped for the actually answering the (rehitorical) questions. I know most of us want to share in an open community where there isn't much flaming. Personally I think many of the pervious posters tried their best to make I statements about their experience, though I can see where you might be confused. I for one can commiserate with this fustration to some extent, though most people know me well enough to not even bother trying to sway me LOL.
 

I really don't need so much commentary so when I start pulling out statistics and such people usually quiet down. However with DD I left a provider who kept telling me "well don't be upset if you decide you want pain relief during labor, don't let this whole natural birth notion beat you up." GAHHHH I think knowing possible scenerios and/or possibilities is useful, but I am not spending much time and energy  with them personally, UNLESS it is something I have some fear over. (IE fear of a breech baby or early baby- so I have them on my worry chart with the plan of action or plan of reframing.) HOWEVER I also believe to some extent in the power of attraction and would rather spend the time attracting my empowered natural birth at home. (not to mention how intrusive thoughts are so easy to obsess over, so I find it best for me not to engage them :-)
 

Personally I believe in a woman's ability to birth. Part of my work for this experience is to surrender to my inner knowing and power, trusting I will know if a variation of normal arrises. Feeling empowered and capable to make choices for your body shows up in many ways I would say, for some that includes planning for the what ifs and for others it is planning for the what I want and believe I can have.

 

Speaking not about the previous posters but those who yammer on IRL to me about "how will I do it," "what if I cant" or "horror stories of people who didn't do it their way" (ie just do whatever the Dr tells you) - I find most people don't feel capable of the responsibility it takes to be empowered in their well/healthcare. Often people come back when I do something "crazy" and say "Wow, you did it! tell me how!!!" 

 

Anyway, i think it is part of the process of getting ready for an UC birth (or natural birth)- the place that you have to listen to your inner knowning over the loud fears of others commenting. heartbeat.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kitteh View Post

In my reading of the previous replies, and based on my knowledge about the posters themselves, I definitely don't think that any of us are trying to imply that you are doing anything wrong or that you are failing to educate yourself about the potential complications that could arise during labor. I'd be willing to bet that most of us have encountered the attitude that you mentioned in your original post--those who have elected from the get-go to opt for interventions and then almost condescendingly advise others not to expect a natural birth. That annoys me to no end.

 

I try to remember that most people just really like to talk about themselves and their own experiences, or to relate the experiences of others to their own. And when I look at it that way I can see that their advice is much more about them than it is about me, if that makes sense.  I feel the same way. Even the advice I give is about me more than the person I am talking to sometimes, which is why I am cautious about giving advice :-)

 

And I can definitely relate that to the feeling of being told to plan for a birth that you don't want--although I know that having a premature baby is always a possibility, why on earth would I devote my energy and attention to "preparing" for something like that? So I just try to remind myself that these comments probably have very little to do with me and my pregnancy and much more to do with the fact that most people like to talk about their own experiences. Sometimes that helps me feel less annoyed by the comments.  I am so guilty of this, because I had a premie and it is a current fear I am working through with this pregnancy.

 

Then again, I'm a hormonal, sleep-deprived pregnant lady. So it's still pretty darn annoying, lol. 

yeahthat.gif for me anyhow...

post #15 of 27

jellybean-I was also speaking generally and about my philosophy.  I'm sorry if it came across as critical of your thoughts and feelings.  You sound very prepared to me and you have already btdt so you know how it works.  I agree that the comments you are getting are annoying.  Sometimes people say things because they are trying to be helpful, but they come across a different way.  It sounds more like they doubt you can have the birth you want or that they doubt it is even possible.  Those kind of comments undermine the work we do to prepare for the birth we envision.  It also annoys me when people say things like, "You don't have to be a hero" or "You don't get a medal for that."  I don't want a natural birth without an epidural because I want an award or because I have something to prove or because I want to be better than someone else.  I wouldn't try to make someone else feel bad for wanting interventions, and I don't want them to disparage me because I don't.

post #16 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by amlikam View Post

 

I think many of the previous posters (and myself though I haven't posted yet) just got caught up in wanting to engage in this interesting concept and share their own sides. I think perhaps the "just venting" might have gotten side swiped for the actually answering the (rehitorical) questions. I know most of us want to share in an open community where there isn't much flaming. Personally I think many of the pervious posters tried their best to make I statements about their experience, though I can see where you might be confused. I for one can commiserate with this fustration to some extent, though most people know me well enough to not even bother trying to sway me LOL.
 

you are right amilkam :) i agree and that's fine. i hope someone doing a random search finds the thread and can gain knowledge in the replies. not that i  can't or am better than that...im just well versed in natural birth as it is. i was absolutely venting. i've been on bed rest since 12 weeks and i have to vent sometimes! the replies weren't mean or degrading..just not what i was looking for. and there is no need to worry, im fully aware of the "what ifs" and have "prepared" myself for them. i just rather not call it prepare...prepare implies that its something im "expecting" and im not. i owe a lot of my sons wonderful birth and infant-hood to "willing it to happen". i've been a lot more negative with this experience so i dont even want anything more negative talked about...

post #17 of 27

12 weeks? Oh golly that must be soooooo fustrating!!!   FWIW I pretty much agree with you :-)

 

" i just rather not call it prepare...prepare implies that its something im "expecting" and im not."   yup  yup yup :-)

post #18 of 27
Thread Starter 

it is frustrating...and it really opens the doors to people saying things like this. especially "as long as the baby is healthy"! of course i feel that way but it's still MY birth (and my last now) and it means ALOT to me. and i strongly believe it means a lot to my unborn baby, too. thanks for the support <3

post #19 of 27

interesting thread. I think it is so true that people are *mostly* trying to sort out their own experiences or prevent you from their dissapointment when they offer such advice.

 

One of the only things I have taken away from my hypnobabies-training (I am a flunky who falls asleep instantly when I turn on the recordings) is the Bubble of Peace. I choose and tell myself to surround myself with the positive thoughts of my pregnancy and how I want my labour and delivery to transpire and I actively block comments, media, etc that disturbs this peaceful imagery. I avoid mainstream sites and any media that build on the 'labor is hell' scenario (A Baby Story on TLC comes to mind, since I am always up at 4am when it is the only thing on). When people start to tell me their horror stories or 'warn' me of what could happen I quite abruptly cut them off or change the subject. 

 

This is of course, different from educating oneself about labor and the challenges one may face, but having done this I have built a bubble of peace that has no room for the negative or threatening comments of others, and I find if I explain that most are quite happy to chat about something else. 

post #20 of 27
Thread Starter 

well put. there is absolutely a difference between educating yourself and preparing for the worst. i like you take and i like my bubble of peace :)

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