Just chiming in here, since I'm an "experienced" mom, and have had four children (baking my 5th as I type), all unmedicated with no tears or episiotomies (except with my first born and I'll explain that one).
With my first baby, it was Feb of 1990 when he was born. I was 17. The reason they did an episiotomy was because is was Kaiser's policy. I didn't know that I could have told them not to do it. However, I had my entire labor and birth unmedicated and was not induced.
My baby was born in 8 hours from first contraction to birth. He was 7#2.5oz.
With my second baby, born at Kaiser in Feb of 1992, I was more informed. My OB told me that routine episiotomy was no longer the norm and that he wouldn't do it if I didn't need it. I was 19... My water broke and I drove myself to the hospital. Labor started with the help of pit after waiting for 4 hours after PROM (I was 34 weeks pregnant). From first contraction to birth was 3.5 hours. No episiotomy, no pain meds... no tears either. Baby was 5#15oz.
My third baby was quite the experience...
Had a contraction at 2:30 AM. Another about 3 minutes later, another about 2 minutes later... Called my mom since dh was in another state trying to find us a new house since his company was transferring us, and had her come to take me to the hospital. She lollygagged getting to my house, but eventually got me to Kaiser. Went into the L&D and they checked me, I was pushing. LOL No episiotomy, no tears, no pain meds, just a really fast labor. Had my baby at 3:53 AM. She was 7#4oz.
My last baby was a messed up experience, only because I was induced with Cytotec and I hadn't done my research before allowing it.
However once the contractions started, I had my baby in my arms in 45 minutes.
The only "tear" I had was a small scrape where my baby had nicked me on the way out. No stitches, just extra care with a peri bottle! No pain meds, no episiotomy, etc. She was 7#5oz.
This is all to show you that you do not need to be scared by what happened to your mom or MIL or anyone of that generation. They all have horror stories of labor and birth because they were all very medicalized. I suggest talking to women your own age, who had care with midwives, or talk to women of your grandmother's generation...since their births are going to be more gently explained.
My births, though in hospitals, were excellent because I had great care providers and because I knew that my body was made to birth babies... I have my paternal grandmother's hips. She had 16 babies, all at home.
The only thing that should maybe scare you about my experience is the Cytotec. I highly recommend against it! Also, my recoveries were less than a day and I was home.