I'm sorry that this is turning out to be so hard for you
. I agree that it's your body, your birth, and in the end you get to say how it goes. But I also think that you want your dh on your side, and if he is fearful, angry, etc., that has the potential for having a very negative affect on your birth (not to mention your relationship!).
I've skimmed through most of the posts, and I have something to say that I don't think has been mentioned ...
Originally Posted by HeathenMommy
However I showed him the trailer and he FREAKED THE ^@## OUT about me looking at reactionary and inflammatory stuff that "doesn't even apply to you!" So I don't know how openminded this one can be.
Originally Posted by pixiepunk
well, my opinion has seriously changed since reading your updates. if he's not going to listen to the rational, statistical proof he asked for, then it's a whole different ball game.
It sounds like your dh is not interested in hearing the research, seeing the studies, or frankly, considering anything that might change his mind. I want to share a story about my dh that might be relevant.
I'm 35 years old and 16 weeks pregnant. My first birth was in a hospital-based birth center. This time I want a homebirth, and I don't want to do any testing, ultrasounds, doppler, etc. DH was totally on board with the homebirth, but not so keen on the no testing. He brought it up to me, told me he didn't want a baby with Down Syndrome, I was 35 and "high risk", etc. I was determined not to do the testing, but I didn't put my foot down initially. I told him he had a right to his fears, and asked him to do the research to find out a) what was the statistical risk for DS at my age, b) what were the risks of the tests, and c) what was the accuracy of the tests. Once he came back with this data, we would discuss it and make a decision. I was 99% certain the data would support my choice, just as you can be certain that the research supports your choice to birth at home or at a birth center. Well, days passed and dh didn't lift a finger to do the research (although he did spend hours playing computer games
. In the meantime, I passed on bits and pieces of info I picked up here at MDC, which he would argue about, telling me I couldn't decide not to have a test based just on "X". We started bickering, and had some pretty ugly moments. And yet, he still
didn't do any research. After days of this I finally got sick of waiting, and did the research myself. I presented the results to him, told him there was nothing there that changed my mind, and I wasn't going to do the testing. Period. He was not thrilled, but he didn't have any evidence that refuted my choice.
Okay, fine. I "won". But something else I realized during this process was that I don't think dh even really cared about the testing. He thought
he did, and he thought
he was afraid of having a child with DS, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't about that at all. So what was it about? I think dh has a lot of fears about this pregnancy, but he doesn't think they're "allowable" or "acceptable", so he hides them (maybe even from himself). I had to do a bit of mind-reading, but I'm guessing he's afraid of having another child and how it will change our lives. He's afraid of having a newborn again, and how fricking tired we'll be. We're just getting to the point of having some time for our own interests and pursuits again (dd is going on 2.5), and now we'll be going back to square one. Maybe he's afraid of how the pg will affect me. Or he's afraid I'll die during birth (independent of where I'm birthing -- I think this is actually a very common fear that men have, even if they support things such as homebirth, UC, etc.). Who knows what else, but I think he has a lot of fears ... very normal and understandable fears (heck, I have a lot of those fears myself
). But for whatever reason, he does not believe they're acceptable. He doesn't think he has the right to those fears. He doesn't think he can share them with me. Perhaps, he has deemed them so unacceptable that he has pushed them out of his
conscious mind. But the fear
is still there. So he had to find an "acceptable" way to get it out. He happened to settle on "you're 35 and high risk for DS!!!!!" although he just as easily could have chosen homebirth, etc.
The fact that your dh is being so very irrational about all of this, refusing to listen to the research, calling things "reactionary" and "inflammatory" (he hasn't even seen the movie
, and in general just refusing to participate in a reasoned, researched discussion, makes me wonder if the same thing is going on with him. He has fear (or fears), and has decided to funnel all of them into this one place (probably unconsciously). It's his way of trying to manage the fear(s) and keep from feeling completely overwhelmed by them.
It doesn't mean it's your job to "fix" the situation, or even to necessarily help him with his fears (I think a lot of the time, this isn't even possible because they won't even admit the fears to themselves). I opened a discussion with dh, asked if he had any fears about the pg/birth/new baby, mentioned the ones that I had, and he still adamantly maintained that he had no fears and all was well
(someone very wisely pointed out to me that he probably thinks he needs to "care for me" and "protect me" and denies his own fears in a dysfunctional attempt to do this). But, it might still be helpful for you if you understand the underlying situation. It's insanely frustrating to feel like you're beating your head on a brick wall and dealing with someone who is totally irrational for absolutely no reason -- that you can figure out anyway! If he's doing what I'm suggesting, then it at least gives an explanation for his behavior, why he's being so irrational, etc. It might also mean that the answer isn't presenting him with the data, or compiling a case worthy of the Supreme Court to defend your position. Because none of it will matter
I don't know if this is what is going on, but I thought I would mention my experience on the off chance it would be helpful. If this is the case, I don't know what the solution is. In my case, dh was willing to fold in the face of my evidence, even though he wasn't happy about it (another clue that it really didn't have anything to do with what we were arguing about -- if the research supports my position, then he should be convinced and happy that we're making the right choice!). But I'm very strong willed and he isn't, so he just let me have my way, and thankfully has not seemed bitter or resentful. I don't know what will happen in your case, but maybe understanding what is driving your dh will help you come up with a better way to resolve the situation.
Best of luck and lots of
s. Oh, and I've heard that The Business of Being Born will be available through Netflix at some point, although on the Netflix site it says "release date is unknown; availability is not guaranteed."