Beth, you bring up quite a few good points. I know, for me, I made my decision after the first visit w/ my OB/GYN, with whom I felt I had a really good relationship. When I expressed concerns about the needless interventions during my son's birth (with a pompous a** of a dr. w/ an ego the size of a skyscraper...), he assured me that this birth would be different. However, he did defend the use of the vacuum extractor (which the first dr. used as soon as the head crowned, w/out giving me a chance to even push the baby out).
The final straw came when we were calculating EDD. I did my best to explain that I did not ovulate on Day 14, as DH was out of the country then. I estimated that I ovulated sometime between Day 21-25. Well, my explanations went completely unheeded. After the vaginal exam, the dr. stated, "There's no way you're ten weeks!" and whisked me off to perform a vaginal ultrasound. Intervention on day one! I realized then that (psychologically) I would never survive another hospital birth experience.
I didn't know anything about UC birth, so I went on my search for a homebirthing midwifery practice. It took me a good while to locate one, there are only 3 CNM's in NJ who do them and I didn't know about DEM's at that time. I had a very satisfying homebirth experience, even though our daughter arrived about 5 min. ahead of the first midwife! After the homebirth, I realized how awful the hospital birth was, and how I had been carrying a great deal of anger, resentment and dissatisfaction for six years!
You may want to check out www.BirthLove.com
to read lots of birth stories and join the forums there. There are lots of UC and homebirthers there.