or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Pregnancy and Birth › Birth and Beyond › What do you think, should Daddy stay away?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

What do you think, should Daddy stay away? - Page 2

post #21 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabysmom617 View Post
As for the father being responsible for the higher levels of stress and contributing to longer labors, well that's a bunch of crap. I mean, there is a LOT of stuff involved in hospital births that could contribute to the rise of the same stress labor-slowing hormones leading to interventions and complications, so I think it's a little dismissive to blame it all on dad being there.
Odent isn't attending typical hospital births. He's one of the pioneers of water birth in France. "The most important thing is not to disturb the birthing mother."

I'll agree, the "all fathers" tone is bad. However, have you ever seen a book or article that is in favor of fathers being at the birth that acknowledges that it might not be right for all couples?
post #22 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by mynetname View Post
What I got from this article can be expanded to mean: anyone not really helping or nervous cannot be helping the mother in labour.
But for many women, that could be worse if it was their partner whom they were relying on to be a bastion of support.
post #23 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Odent isn't attending typical hospital births. He's one of the pioneers of water birth in France. "The most important thing is not to disturb the birthing mother."

I'll agree, the "all fathers" tone is bad. However, have you ever seen a book or article that is in favor of fathers being at the birth that acknowledges that it might not be right for all couples?
regardless of what he did, which i am sure most of us are aware of, any article that has that tone, or any other generalizing tone like this is bad in my eyes.

articles that try to lump all women into one of two or three categories are part of exactly what is wrong with the medical model right now.
post #24 of 87
Anyway, for me, I'm very aware of my dh's needs. So he won't be at the birth barring a sudden change in my needs when the time comes. His presence would make me continually aware of how he was feeling, what he needed, how *I* could make *him* more comfortable and not worry.

Had that belief *before* reading Odent's article about a year ago.

Have also had condescending UAVs tell me they're "sorry" that I don't have a dh I can "rely" on.
post #25 of 87
Myself and my husband do fit that profile, but I don't think that means everyone does. He's very needy, and nervous around birth and feels like he has to be *doing something* and ends up doing something STUPID when what he really needs to do is sit down and shut up. I dunno, maybe he'll have learned his lesson last time, or maybe I'll be sending him to the pub. Man, I hope this birth isn't on a Sunday.
post #26 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
Uhhh... he is a male OB??? And he thinks the father shouldn't be there, based on gender? Dude doesn't have a brain in his head obviously because he is arguing for his own retirement.
You must not know Dr. Odent's story. He publicly announced about fifteen years ago that he would no longer attend births, because he believes that men don't belong in the delivery room. He now focuses on research, teaching and speaking at midwifery conferences. So, yes, he put his money where his mouth is, and walked away from being Chief of Staff at Pithiviers, outside Paris. He's been on the forefront of changing birth for decades, and isn't afraid to alienate anyone.
post #27 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by almadianna View Post
regardless of what he did, which i am sure most of us are aware of, any article that has that tone, or any other generalizing tone like this is bad in my eyes.

articles that try to lump all women into one of two or three categories are part of exactly what is wrong with the medical model right now.
right. but what is also wrong with the medical model is entirely dismissing possible biological discoveries and truths because it makes generalizations that do not fit their specific/personal/financial/routine agendas. maybe we shouldn't do that here.

no one likes their pre-conceived beliefs to be questioned.
post #28 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by babysanchez614 View Post
right. but what is also wrong with the medical model is entirely dismissing possible biological discoveries and truths because it makes generalizations that do not fit their specific/personal/financial/routine agendas. maybe we shouldn't do that here.

no one likes their pre-conceived beliefs to be questioned.
i am perfectly fine with questioning an article that is poorly written and full of generalizations.
i said in my first comment that it might work for some, but not for others... and i stand by that.

some women couldnt imagine their births without their partners. this does not make them freaks or wrong. this just makes them part of the many that do not fit into someone's idea of what they believe birth is like.

*ETA*

Hello from houston!!!
post #29 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by almadianna View Post
Hello from houston!!!

Hello!!!
post #30 of 87
I was honored to hear Dr. Odent speak at the Trust Birth Conference. While we are all entitled to have our own opinions and do as we see fit, I do believe Dr. Odent has done a lot of research into the subject. The first time I read this opinion of his, my gut reaction was that it was a lot of bull.

Then, I started thinking about my own births. DH was always there. How frightening was it for him at the first when I was in pain and he couldn't do anything about it? What about when they all descended on me to prep me for a c/section? He was there in the OR with me and still talks about seeing my insides. He tried to be strong and was great with the baby, but it must have been distressing for him.

At the next birth, the hospital staff pushed him aside completely, and he began worrying all over again when they started whispering about a possible repeat section. Instead, he got to watch the CNM cut open my perineum.

At the next one, the CNMs again tried to push him aside and keep him in the dark. He let them know that he didn't appreciate it then and he wanted to know what was going on. He has told me he felt awful making me do all this stuff to make labor progress when he knew I was in pain... even though we had agreed upon all that. My impression of his help at our 3rd birth was that he was wonderfully supportive... but he felt helpless.

He missed the next one. Maybe there is something to Dr. Odent's theory. I was at 5 cm and so he went out to check the older kids in my inlaws' motorhome in the hospital parking lot. He needed to calm a few of them down, then showed the ER staff the Hale-Bopp comet on his way back in. He thought he'd walked into the wrong room because I had already had the baby. He felt badly for missing it, but my labor just took off after he left. He'd only been gone about half an hour.

Then we had babies at home. He busied himself with readying the supplies, cooking and other tasks most of the time. He caught the first one we had at home. He stayed in the kitchen except for the actual birth for the next one... he was pretty busy at the next setting up and letting me lean on him for awhile, but he kept busy in the kitchen for some time before and after the birth, and with our last one, he was present but again, left it to "us women." I've asked him about it, and while he loves to witness the birth of each of our children, he feels there really isn't anything for him to do except take care of the other kids, cook and get things ready. He says that he is comfortable knowing this is a "woman's thing" (his words).

So, maybe there is something to what Dr. Odent says. It may not be on an obvious level... and I know I like to depend on my hubby when I need him, but he sees this as something he can never fully be a part of. I know I was always on my own during my 3 miscarriages... the last one had a full-blown labor, and he stayed in the living room as I labored in the bedroom. At the time, part of me was upset that he wasn't in there holding my hand, but then I found the strength in myself to realize this was my task... not his. I depended on myself, and I think because of this, my last birth went very calmly. I didn't need him to do anything at that birth that he was not comfortable with... I labored on my own and he got to participate in his own way instead of feeling he had to take care of me.
post #31 of 87
I had a hard time putting this article out of my mind in bed last night. I have a lot of respect for Odent, however, I can respect someone and still disagree with a whole range of things they believe. This is one of them. It's no, IMO, the man being in the birth room that causes trouble, it's having an UNEDUCATED man in the birth room. My DH for instance probably won't be the best at it because he doesn't know every detail that i know. But even at DS hospital birth where we were both new at it, he was amazing. I never felt that he was nervous, he didn't talk to me, distract me, or try to fix anything. Now that we're having a UP/UC I can only see things getting better. No one will be there to say "this isn't right" or anything that might make him nervous.
Now, if you have a man who's been told his whole life, and firmly believes that birth is dangerous, or if you have one of those "fixers" then yeah, I could see that being a problem. But it isn't a problem because he's a MAN, it's because he has the wrong expectations of birth. I woman with the same beliefs could do just as much damage. This is exactly the reason that I want my husband in the pool with me, but I don't want my grandmother, aunts, or my stepdads girlfriend in the house, period. They only want to come to "help if anything goes wrong" not to help things go RIGHT!
post #32 of 87


I agree with a great deal Odent has said through the years. I respect him as a bringer of change to the birth scene. I just think he's off on this one.

I understand that there are men who are not helpful to the process. *PERSONALLY* I would not be content with a man of that sort as my life partner. That is not acceptable *to me* I am perfectly okay with it working for some women though.

For ME, I need my dh to be educated and on board and involved in the whole process. And he wouldn't have it any other way.

-Angela
post #33 of 87
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Odent isn't attending typical hospital births. He's one of the pioneers of water birth in France. "The most important thing is not to disturb the birthing mother."

I'll agree, the "all fathers" tone is bad. However, have you ever seen a book or article that is in favor of fathers being at the birth that acknowledges that it might not be right for all couples?
Yeah, I didn't know that about him until I posted that here. But in the article, was he speaking of fathers at homebirths causing longer labors, or was he speaking of the rise of hospital birth complications due to the presence of the father?

Quote:
At the present time, when birth is more difficult and longer than ever, when more women need drugs or Caesareans, we have to dare to smash the limits of political correctness and ask whether men should really be present at birth.
Please (politely ) correct me if I'm wrong, but is he looking for a correlation between hospital births, longer labors, and increased interventions, and dad being present? To me, something just sounds off about that. I mean, of course, each situation is different but, IF he's trying to lump this altogether as related, then I too think he's a little bit off the mark...

But that's just my humble $.02 I am far from a birth expert, but I learn a lot here.
post #34 of 87
I would like to point out that Dr. Odent did not write this article. It is about him and his beliefs, but his words were strung together and pieced into a story by someone else.
post #35 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Incubator View Post
It's no, IMO, the man being in the birth room that causes trouble, it's having an UNEDUCATED man in the birth room.
I understand what you're saying, but education will only get you so far. There are some types of people, men and women, who can know intellectually all kinds of facts about birth and understand the inherent safety and need for calmness and all that, but in the face of the real thing totally lose their marbles. I think there is also some component of how empathetic and in-tune a person is, and it happens for whatever reason that more men than women have trouble in that arena. My husband is maybe worse than most; he doesn't really grok human emotion. I could sigh because I just saw a beautiful sunset and he'd ask me full of concern what was wrong with me. I could walk into a room in tears and he'd continue with what he was doing because he wouldn't notice any kind of distress. Just not that kind of person.
post #36 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by paquerette View Post
My husband is maybe worse than most; he doesn't really grok human emotion. I could sigh because I just saw a beautiful sunset and he'd ask me full of concern what was wrong with me. I could walk into a room in tears and he'd continue with what he was doing because he wouldn't notice any kind of distress. Just not that kind of person.
I know you didn't mean that to be funny, but I had to laugh, because my DH is the exact same way.
post #37 of 87
I was interested to read this article because I didn't find DH's presence particularly helpful in any way. I often times want to bar him from any future deliveries, but feel kind of like I have to let him be there because he is that Dad. I was disappointed that the article didn't make a better case for itself. It provided lots of anecdotal "evidence" that men should not be in the labor room, and citing the most extreme examples of those, but not backing that up with anything at all. These are just men he heard about? I was very interested in the evolutionary aspect, but that was barely even touched on.

Quote:
If there are any doubts, we only have to look across the rest of the mammal world in order to see that no other female, save the human female, invites her sexual partner to witness her giving birth.

Of course, it would not be possible for women to give birth alone.
And saying that it would not be possible for a woman to give birth alone is odd. Is he saying biologically? I'm pretty sure there are some stories over on the UC board that would challenge this belief of his.

I wish he stuck to facts and not gotten so off track with scary stories about how my husband is going to go crazy or divorce me if I invite him into the labor room.
post #38 of 87
Some of what he said was interesting and accurate. Women do need peace and serrenity during labor. I just don't understand why he is boxing in EVERY husband into this made up cattegory of stress filled, blubbering, panicking idiots. The part about the male can't be calm no matter how hard he tried to fake it, and that stresses out the women. Where is he getting his statistics from? I think it is more than possible to have a well informed, well prepare, relax, and very supportive husband during labor. I also HATE the notion that men can't see their wives in labor without leaving some emotional scar.
Maybe the reason this OB is witnessing such stressed out men is the invironement he is in. It is in a mans nature to be protective, watching your wife completely out of control at the hands of a doctor pushing every intervention onto her can be quite traumatizing. Also, IMO, hopitals carry with them a certain amount of panic. Everything is treated as an emergancy. Mom is busy laboring, and so dad is looked to for all decision making, and paper signing. Uh, ya, that is stressfull. My DH sure wasn't very crunchy at the time of my birth (even though he is more so now) but he openly expressed concerns with the few interventions that took place after it was all said and done. HHhhmmm...just some food for thought.
post #39 of 87
It all depends on the family, the partnership and what the woman is comfortable with.
post #40 of 87
i agree with what others have said, it really depends upon the individual.

i think that there are many and diverse valid reasons for not having the father present at the birth (and honestly, it is a rather new phenomenon--i believe within the last 100 years--for whatever that may be worth from a cultural anthropology stand point), just as there are many and diverse vaild reasons for having the father present (or any males present for that matter).

for my own part, i want my husband present only if he can maintain a level of presense with me, and not step outside of my own process with fear, anxiety, or anger (this is an odd one that comes from his family; they become angry with one who is sick or injured because it is "inconvenient" to them to have to take care of someone, and there is also a lot of shaming of someone who has a cold, for example. they would assert "if you took care of yourself, you wouldn't get a cold!" and so on. he still carries the vestages of this, though it is rare that they crop up. while labor/birth are not illnesses/injuries, they do require time and presence, and it is this that his family doesn't want to give and thus would likely be considered quite the inconvenience).

in such a circumstance, and in circumstances where i have been sick or even just normal but considered some kind of nuisance to him, i have sent him away or gone away myself (if possible). i had a flu in january (first time in several years) and for about half the time he was great, but then he became very agitated and angry. i asked him to go for a walk, and then do to some things for himself that were away from me and my space, and he came back and was present.

i assume that, during birth, he will be able to maintain that presence, but if not, i'm happy to send him out.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Birth and Beyond
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Pregnancy and Birth › Birth and Beyond › What do you think, should Daddy stay away?