Originally Posted by MamaJ2005
I don't trust anything written by an MD, for one. I think if your partner is well studied and truly learns about the different stages of labor and what we go through, he can be a great help and comfort. (cuts made by Flapjack)
Erm, this is Michel Odent we're talking about here- the gentleman responsible for the introduction of the ubiquitous and overused birthing pool, who pioneered the idea of gentle birth techniques in hospitals and who is the biggest advocate for normal birth, bar none, that I'm aware of. The sensitivity to the needs of the labouring woman that he demonstrates can be excelled only by someone with a uterus, IMO. University qualifications don't have to be a disadvantage.
The first time around, my ex went off and did his own thing at times while I was labouring, and that didn't feel good. I needed him, needed the support, needed the reassurance, and it wasn't forthcoming. Really, what I needed was for him to tell me that he loved me and that nothing would change once we were grownups and parents rather than messed up adolescents, but
: you have to be an adult to act like an adult. He couldn't even be with me during Rowan's birth, and that was inevitably hard, but by the time Isaac came along I had the inner resources to get him out regardless of the fact that I was working solo.
Then came Skye, and the month of beautiful birth stories (aka prodromal hell) and a new husband. He was wonderful. When I really needed him was all those nights of contracting, but not hard enough to get our baby out into nose-beeping territory, to love me, support me, reassure me and to make me feel like a beautiful, sexual, desirable woman even when I felt devastatingly broken. In the end, we induced her together with a day in bed, rubbing his semen into my cervix and just talking and loving on each other, and that was one of the most amazing days of my life (that's the Friday, the day before her actual birth-day) Since then, yes, our sex life has irrevocably changed- there is this very real awareness between us that this is the act that made our children, and brought our daughter out, and there's a level there that I never got with my ex. It's going to be interesting to know what sex is like when I no longer squirt milk across the room at random moments and can get myself up to the chandelier without trapping a nerve...
Oh, I digress. One of the stresses last time was the fact that he nearly missed DD's birth because he wanted to tell his dad that my waters had broken so it must be real labour this time...
Somehow, he hadn't picked up on the fact that birth can be fast as well as slow.
This time, we're going to take things as they come. He doesn't want to have to think about umbilical cords or placentas, and I want to cut the cord but not until after the placenta is out, so, you know, this is working out nicely. We have a 2yo, a mad springer spaniel and two buoyant boys around the house, so one of the ways he can speed my labour is by being mum so I can tune into my inner birthing goddess... if I need him, I know he's there. If I don't, he's cool with that. Bless, I just realised how lucky I am