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1st c-sec, what do you think now? - Page 2

post #21 of 42
I agree, through having a c-section i was led to these boards and have done so much research now into pregnancy, birth, vaccines, raising children, etc. I doubt I would have done this had I not had a c-section. It definately led me down a different path.
For my c-section I wasn't induced, I went to 41 weeks and 3 days, I used a midwife (in a hospital), I stayed at home until I was 9 1/2 cm's dilated. I pushed for 2 hours without pain relief and finally they persuaded me to have an epidural and I pushed for another 2 hours and she didn't descend. I tried many different positions. I will consider a HBAC next time and I will add a doula into my plan. But who knows what'll happen, that's the beauty of birth!
post #22 of 42
Alexsam, I feel pretty much the same way about my c with T. Surgery sucked, but I don't see how it could have been any other way, and I'm at peace with it. I did everything under the sun to get T to go into labor, to get him positioned correctly, but no go. He finally went into distress (at 42 1/2 wks), I still wasn't in labor, I was a poor induction candidate, and I had a cesarean. He was all tangled up in the cord, and I don't think he could have descended or gone through labor without serious repercussions. Still, major surgery sucks, and I just didn't want it to keep me from having a vaginal birth with #2.

I think the cesarean support threads are awesome. They're the safest place on MDC to talk about one's experiences (good or bad).
post #23 of 42
I'm afraid I have absolutely nothing but hatred for my own c-section. It was the secon-worst experience of my life- and I hope it retains that title. The worst was 17 hours later when my son died. While I suppose my c-section was pretty necessary- as they go- after 40 hours of unprogressing labor- and 5 cm dilation (only because of a balloon catheter). I do feel pretty good about my labor- I was unmedicated for the 40 hours, even through 9 hours of pitocin. But the section was the most terrifying experience- I was left alone, yelled at by the nurse, strapped to the cold table- FREEZING the whole time, and I couldn't stop shaking. Oh- and the anasthesiologist tapped on my chest & asked if I could feel it- when I finally said yes, he actually SAID to me "well, I'm glad I decided to back that off or you wouldn't be able to breathe" !!! When my son was pulled out of me no one said anything to us- a group of doctors just rushed to the corner with him (we didn't know there was a problem until after). Finally, our midwife told us he was having some trouble getting started breathing & they were going to treat him. So I told my hubby to go with him. I woke up in recovery- still shaking so badly that I was unable to speak- and my sister was there. She got my mom & I learned that my ds was in the NICU. Afterward, the nurses & hospital staff were really great. But the whole process of the c-section was absolutely atrocious.

And now, I'm 31 weeks with my second, and I'm getting all kinds of crap about having a VBAC- I can't give birth in the birthing center- 2 doors down from L&D- because I'm a VBAC. And I'm lucky. I live in a big area where there is actually A hospital with midwives who will attend a VBAC. But even they keep throwing out phrases like "trial of labor" as if I'm not really expected to be able to give birth normally now. I hate my c-section and I have real feelings of hostility towards the medical community because I feel I was deprived of time with my son- had he been born naturally he would at least have been alive in my arms for a minute or so before the cord stopped pulsing. I don't think that's necessarily rational- he probably couldn't have been born vaginally- we both may have died without the section- but I still feel that way. And now it's threatening the birth of my second baby. I don't feel like I have given birth- I feel sortof like I was pregnant with a baby, and then I wasn't.

Don't get me wrong- I am not by any means bashing anyone else's c-section experience. I am 100% sure that I would feel at least somewhat different had my son lived. I would at least feel that the pain and trouble I'm having now was for a good cause. That just wasn't my experience.

I think, though, that whatever your experience, it is important to talk about it and deal with it. Apprehensions are only inhibitors. And the lead to failure-to-progress. Take out the trash- talk about your experience(s) with friends & fellow "survivors". The more you talk about it & tell your story the more healed you will feel, and the better able to have a successful VBAC!

Thanks for letting me ramble.
post #24 of 42
I am almost three weeks post c-section. While I am overjoyed with my daughter, and I feel that my c-section went as well as it could have, I am still not sure that I couldn't have had her vaginally. They recommended a c-section for fetal macrosomia, due to suspected missed gestational diabetes. She did come out really big with a large head and chest circumfrence (big wide shoulders too!) and my body was not showing any progress toward labor post date (and I swear I felt her try to drop several times, and she couldn't get her big head in that birth canal!) But maybe if I had waited, she would have come out on her own.
If I had more concrete evidence that my c-section was really needed and that she or/and I had been in real danger, then maybe I could accept it more.
I am hoping for a VBAC for my second (and final) birth, but am trying to not dwell on the section or the next one, and to concentrate on my DD and being a good mom to her.
post #25 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtlewomyn
If I had more concrete evidence that my c-section was really needed and that she or/and I had been in real danger, then maybe I could accept it more.
I've always felt that way, as well. It's not that I'd want to be in a life-or-death, "operate now or we'll lose you and the baby" scenario. But, I think it would be easier to live with the aftermath, if I believed it had needed to be done in the first place.
post #26 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by loudmama
Women are manipulated & coerced into c-sections. Women are not always given all the info & are often not even given the time to ask questions or even time to process what has happened. I wish that were not the case. This is not to say that all Dr's do this because they are bad people, its just what they believe to be true.
They are also terrified of that one lawsuit that will take away their practice. I don't know how it is everywhere, but in Ohio, malpractice insurance runs about $85,000 a year for OB's, and in the rural area where I live, there's no way they make enough money to afford that and still live as we think doctors typically live--although I don't know for a fact, I suspect they don't even make enough to justify the kind of all-hours work they do. One average-size lawsuit, even if unsuccessful, would be costly enough that they'd have to shut down and move to a cheaper state. My county has already lost about half of the delivery doctors we had when I moved here almost nine years ago--for a while, we only had 5 OB's in the whole county.

On the other hand, some doctors allow that fear (or other factors) to override the good of their patients, and that is wrong. There is a doctor I know of who tells women lies in order to get them to opt for c-sections. This is not a rumor or exaggeration--it is a fact, and it's horrifying that this can happen without repercussions.

But in cases like that, aren't women contributing to the problem as well? How many women do we all know who read "What to Expect" while they're pregnant, learn nothing else about the process, and hand themselves wholesale over to their doctors, believing everything they say? These are the women often have unnecessary inductions and c-sections, the women who endlessly perpetuate the idea that birth is an inherently medical process and something to be feared. If all women educated themselves properly, the c-section rate would go down. It wouldn't eliminate the problem, but it would be a start.

Quote:
For the most part, I believe my c-section was needed. DD wasn't in distress, but after 7 hours of unmedicated pushing, I was pretty sure she wasn't moving. What I have realized, though, is that the reason I feel less regret over my c-section is that I feel like we were in control. We made the choice to go that long. We tried just about everything we knew to do.
Wow!!! I totally could have written that paragraph, loudmama! Yours is the first birth story I've heard that is almost identical to mine! In fact...everything you just wrote IS identical to my birth experience. Freaky! And yes--feeling like it was my own decision made a HUGE difference in how I dealt with it afterward. I did mourn and second-guess and feel guilty about it, but I was able to let it go because I know there was nothing else I could have done.

It also helped that I had the most "perfect" c-section possible. The pain was gone in 36 hours and the recovery was quick and easy. Of course, I know this isn't typical--but I am incredibly thankful for it, and wish it for everyone who has to have a c-sec. I wish everyone could have a supportive staff, nurse their babies afterward, etc. It isn't fair when, after getting stuck with something like a c-section, we still have to put up with all sorts of other crap too!
post #27 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiB
But in cases like that, aren't women contributing to the problem as well? How many women do we all know who read "What to Expect" while they're pregnant, learn nothing else about the process, and hand themselves wholesale over to their doctors, believing everything they say? These are the women often have unnecessary inductions and c-sections, the women who endlessly perpetuate the idea that birth is an inherently medical process and something to be feared. If all women educated themselves properly, the c-section rate would go down. It wouldn't eliminate the problem, but it would be a start.
I've seen this on here before, and I agree to a certain extent. But, why would these women go out and read more or learn more. If a woman's doctor recommends reading material and childbirth classes, and there's nothing in particular that raises a red flag, what would make her go out and read more? With ds1, I read (memorized) two books, took childbirth classes and saw my family doctor regularly. I was told that c-section would only be done in emergency situations - why would I have thought that I'd know an emergency better than the doctor? I didn't even know when my baby turned breech (not saying breech is an emergency, just that my baby turned from head first to bum first in a couple of hours and I had no idea anything had changed). The classes covered everything I'd heard of - c-sections, induction, breech, etc. - I'd asked my doctor the few questions I had, and received satisfactory answers.

Once I'd been cut open, I wished I'd known more. But, I didn't know that I didn't know enough. Many women, myself (12 years ago) included, are totally unaware of how much there is out there to know about pregnancy and childbirth.
post #28 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride
Once I'd been cut open, I wished I'd known more. But, I didn't know that I didn't know enough. Many women, myself (12 years ago) included, are totally unaware of how much there is out there to know about pregnancy and childbirth.
some of us were educated, had read all the right books, questioned everything the doctor said, and still ended up with cesareans. It really really hurts when people assume all it takes is a bit of education and it wouldn't have happened.
post #29 of 42
Well - the only thing I didn't know and needed to know with my first was that my hospital considered breech an emergency. Of course...not sure I'd have done anything differently, because he wasn't breech until I went into labour, and I didn't even know until I got to the hospital...

It's all a lot more complicated than it should be, imo.
post #30 of 42
Sure, some people could be more educated ( patients and doctors both ). I also think there isn't just one answer to explain the number of c sections. You can prepare and be very knowledgable and still have a C section. For example, midwives and doulas have c sections too. My friend , who is a lay midwife, had one. I am a health care practitioner and had one. There are just so many facets and degrees of liability, that it can't really be grouped into one cause.
post #31 of 42
Quote:
some of us were educated, had read all the right books, questioned everything the doctor said, and still ended up with cesareans. It really really hurts when people assume all it takes is a bit of education and it wouldn't have happened.
:

That is actually just about my biggest beef with the natural childbirth crowd--the assumptions which are often made about me because my first child arrived via a cesarean birth. My mw had a very, very low rate of Cs, and I did *everything* I could to avoid one.

I was relieved to get my cesarean, to be honest, because it seemed *highly* unlikely that my ds was going to come out healthy and okay without one (I don't recall if I shared any of the details on this thread, but if I didn't and you're curious, ask). That said, I certainly didn't believe that it meant that I automatically had to have one with all future kids.

However, I am very much aware that Cs are done way, way too often, and too often for not the best reasons. Anyone who's had a truly necessary C just gets lumped in by default.
post #32 of 42
I didn't mean to imply--not by any means!--that informed women won't have c-sections! I'm horrified that I might have evoked such reactions in some of you--especially since I am one of those uber-informed women who ended up with a c-section and resent being told I could have avoided it "if you had only..." Many apologies to anyone who took my comment in that way!

I was actually not referring to the women who come and post here (posting here is a sign that you realize there is more to birth than what you're told by a doctor). I was referring to the kind of women who are content with their ignorance of pregnancy and birth, content with their inductions for being 40 weeks pregnant, or c-sections for things like cpd, or whatever other unnecessary interventions they agree to--content to say, "Yes, doctor" in each and every situation no matter what. If more women demanded accurate information and reliable support for their doctor's decisions, and looked for information on their own as well, there would be fewer c-sections in this country. That's all I meant to say.
post #33 of 42
My cesareans have both been very sad and traumatic for me.
But somehow the second one has made both of them easier, I feel more acceptance and less arrogance overall. The second one was more obviously "necessary" (big abruption, lots of blood) though I have no guarantee that we definitely would have died without it. First one was IMO prudent (primip postdates big breech baby). But like I said, very sad and traumatic anyway. After that, I was sure I would never have another cesarean and neither should anyone else. I passionately, obsessively educated myself. I knew that if you just pick the right caregiver and take care of yourself the right way and don't have any interventions, everything would be fine. Well, it wasn't. And I find I am so much less likely now to jump to judgment even in my own head. And I think that is a good thing.
Today I am at peace with how my children entered the world, even though it was not in any way what I wanted or worked for.
post #34 of 42
Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by lizziejackie
Just about every c/s is ultimately "needed". It's the factors leading up to a c/s that are the trouble...



This was true of my c/s. I was induced and had an epidural and AROM. All of which led to poor head position and late decels. At that point I needed the c/s. Ultimately I had to take responsibility for that. The Dr was doing what he was trained to do. Thats why I chose hbac with a midwife.

I agree, though my HB choice did not save me from a CBAC.

With my first, I was augmented, and had an epidural, and ultimately AROM and after 6 hrs of pushing, 30 hrs of labor, I had just jammed my dd into my pelvis-she was posterior,

So I thought I was educated the second time around and chose to HBAC with a mw and doula, and I still ended up with a section. I also ended up with a bandl's ring: a sign of obstructed labor, and a baby with late decels (though I am skeptical anything was wrong) who was again, jammed in to my pelvis in an LOP position which was not diagnosed until my son was pulled out of me(and I had done OFP and chiro care throughout pregnancy) I'll never forgive myself for consenting to AROM (though I had partial SROM or a slow leak before that) but my point is, that even if you are educated, it is hard to make educated decisions in the midst of a hazy fatigue when contractions are 2 minutes apart lasting for 1 minute, and you've been in that state for 5, then 8, then 10 hours, and you've tried just about everything you can to get your baby out.


I HATE both my c-sections, but as PPs have said the first was what lit the fire in me to come over to the crunchy side of life, examine mainstream culture, and question just about everything before I swallowed it hook-line-an sinker. I regret my c-sections but I sometimes think I am a better person for it, a gentler, better educated person, and a better mother. so maybe some good came out of ythe first, but I don't see how anything good came out of the second, ( other than my son, Of course!)
post #35 of 42
I hope I didn't imply to anyone that here that educating themselves would have saved them from c/sections -- esp. those that were wanting to VBAC. I know that's just not true for a lot of people, even those VBAC hopefuls turned CBAC. What I am saying tho, if more women would educate themselves before and during their first pregnancies, we would certainly end up with fewer c/sections and therefore, fewer women doing the "VBAC scramble" (which is my term for us VBACers who feel we have to fend off the entire medical establishment, our friends and our families to obtain a VBAC.)

I am enjoying this thread tho!
post #36 of 42
My pregnancy was traumatic, my c-section was wonderful, fabulous, like a breath of fresh air.

After my water broke at 20 weeks I was told I had an 80% chance of going into labor w/i a week and they would not stop labor and would not attempt to revive the baby upon delievery (actually, he probably would've been stillborn). After 68 successful days in the hospital on complete bedrest, I began bleeding moderately and was having some very, very mild contractions. I begged the on call doc to deliever me. I begged and begged and begged some more. I had made it this far, the last thing I wanted was to lose my child after all that I had done to get him to 30 weeks. She wouldn't do it. She thought I was fine. When my OB got to work the next morning she said she thought it was time. I fully agreed. 2 hours and 48 minutes later, my son was born. It was silent in the room for the first 2-3 minutes, and then he started to cry. It was music to my ears. His lungs had developed, despite the very low fluid he had to work with!

My OB came to recovery and told me that not only was the placenta abrupting, but the cord was only 6 inches long and implanted on the wrong place on the placenta.

I will always be grateful for my OB and my c-birth.

M.
post #37 of 42
I'm very thankful for my c-section. Without it, my dd would not be here. It wasn't my choice to have one, and I would never opt to have one, but it was the best thing for my daughter.
post #38 of 42
My feelings on my first c-section have really changed over the years.To begin with I wasn't really upset. I thought it was a pretty easy recovery (I was 22!) and I bf'd my son until he was 7-8 months, longer than anyone else I knew.

I went on to have 2 vbac's, in 92 and 94. I really did want them, but I wasn't obsessed with it, especially the first vbac. But I'm really glad I had them.

However, then years later when I was pregnant again, in 2003, and I discovered the HUGE backlash against vbacs, I really started to get angry about my first c-section. Even though I had had 2 vbac's, both INDUCED no less, I was now being refused even the chance to vbac . It turns out, I would've had to have a c-section for my bp anyway, but still, the choice was never there, even had I had a perfectly healthy pregnancy.

And now, of course, after 2 c-sections, and still the high bp, I'm really stuck.

My first child, and my 2 vbacs, were all born with merconium. I don't really know what to think now, 14.5 years later, about how "necessary" my first c-section was. But it bothers me more now, than it did for the first 9 years after having it.
post #39 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by gethane
My feelings on my first c-section have really changed over the years.To begin with I wasn't really upset. I thought it was a pretty easy recovery (I was 22!)
Same thing here. I was 22, had a mw and wanted a natural birth. I was anxious about going in for my scheduled c/s(breech), but afterwards, I bonded deeply with my son, bf'd without a problem and pretty much got on with life.
Now, seven years later, I am ttc and will have to travel because none of the hospitals nearby will deal with vbacs. I am so angry, especially when I look back and realize that my c/s was unneccesary. I honestly didn't know any better. I come from a very mainstream family and all of my friends thought I was crazy when I said I didn't want pain meds. I read my "What to Expect...", went to my lamaze classes and I thought that my midwife would lead me in the right direction. I am greatful for internet access and the chance to meet people, ask questions, and get book reccomendations that I would otherwise never have.
post #40 of 42
Originally I felt really good about my cesarean, b/c despite the fact that it is definitely not what I had hoped for, both my baby and I were healthy. I still feel good about my birthing experience;

I labored at home from prelabor through to about 3cm dilated and contractions about 1-3min apart (from 8pm to noon)
Then went to the birth center and labored from noon to 10pm before deciding myself that I wanted to transfer to the hospital.
After laboring at the hospital with an epidural we lost the fetal heart rate and even trying to find it many different ways couldnt find the heart rate, so I was rushed in to get a cesarean.

It turns out that dd was acynclitic, posterior and had the cord around her neck 5 times. She never descended into the birth canal b/c she ran out of cord! We were stuck at -1 and 8cm. So, with those circumstances, I felt our birth could not have happened any other way with both of us coming out healthy.

Afterwards, I felt happy to have our sweet baby girl with us and happy that despite the fact that I didnt delivery vaginally, I still had labored naturally for as long as I could, until I myself made the decision to go another route.

BUT, now I feel a little frustration with the VBAC dilemma. I definitely want to have other children, and I feel good about my first birth experience, but am apprehensive with the climate of VBAC. So that is my only regret, that the VBAC situation is so touchy and political because that would be my choice for my next birth, VBAC.

I know the whole cesarean thing is quite an issue. I do think there are plenty of situations where they are unnecessary, and I do agree that being educated and prepared to stand up for your birthing preferences would probably help in the situations where the cesareans weren't totally necessary. But I do also think there are lots of mamas that have ended up with completely necessary cesareans despite all of their education and preparedness. I think sometimes things happen in labor and pregnancy that you could never predict, like with my dd-I mean an umbilical cord around the neck 5 times! Who would have ever thought that would happen! I think any mama who has experienced cesarean most likely would love to have some sensitivity concerning her birth experience. Any mama I know with a cesarean in her past would much rather have chosen a vaginal birth and already feels bad enough without others judging her.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents
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