How many people do you feel comfortable with at your homebirth? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 12:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok in december we'll be homebirthing twins. And we will have 3 (yup 3) midwives here. My midwife with no twin experience, another midwife whom she works with (not sure of her twin experience) and another midwife coming from a few hours away who has a lot of twin experience.

So that will make me, dh, and the birth photographer. For sure 3 midwives and any assistants they bring (I know for sure my midwife has 2). Not sure if they other two will bring theirs or not.

I will have someone here to watch my kiddos and I really wanted a friend of mine to be here.

That said... I feel like HOLY CRAP that's a lot of people to fit into a room for a birth. (Granted I have a big house but still).

How do I try and decide how many people to be here, while still having people be able to learn (as this will be first twin experience for the apprentices and my midwife).

Were you comfy with a lot of people around you in labor/birth? I wasn't with the other two and thought I would be ok but as time goes on I'm not so sure.

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#2 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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I'm interested in hearing everyone's thoughts on this as well. I'm due any day now and am expecting 4 or 5 people (plus me, of course) to be around during the birth.

Mama to A (08/10) & E (03/13).
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#3 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 12:26 PM
 
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Four, maybe five, and me.

Me, DH, Midwife 1, Midwife 2, Midwife apprentice, MAYBE a photographer.

ETA: you know what I love about it all, though? I've already met EVERYONE who is going to be there. That's huge for me. No strangers, no shift changes, no groups of students.
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#4 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 12:26 PM
 
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I found that having a bunch of people here during early labor was a hindrance. Once I was in full blown, can't-take-it-anymore, near transition labor it didn't really matter how many people were here or who they were though. I think the mail man could have gotten in on it without me batting an eye, really! But early in the game my mom, kids, MIL, even the midwife and doula, it was all too much. My midwife actually ordered everyone but dh out of the house for awhile. It was like that for all 3 of my births--1 transfer, 1 homebirth, 1 planned hospital birth.

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#5 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 12:52 PM
 
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I am having 5 or 6 depending on if my midwife brings both assistants or just one. This also includes my mom to help with my son if needed, or take pics, help midwives, etc. I had her at my 1st birth in the hospital and she was very helpful.

Like another poster said though,I don't think it will bother me once I'm in full blown transition or close to it. But in the beginning I'm hoping they just stay in the distance.

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#6 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think we're looking at like 10 people? So i'm going to try and see how we can scale back.

Me, DH, Midwife 1, midwife 2, midwife 3, birth photographer, assistant 1 and maybe assistant 2, friend, my mom, MIL? My kids will be in the house but wtched by MIL. And hwoever many other assistants come?

Hmmm

Mama to a zoo!
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#7 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:05 PM
 
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2. dh and best friend
Posted via Mobile Device

Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012)  Married to awesome SAH DH.

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#8 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:08 PM
 
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I'm carrying a baby as a surrogate. Actually, until I was 18 weeks, I was carrying twins (we had an unexplained fetal demise-- really rare), but that wouldn't have changed the cast of characters much. We would have had one extra midwife. As it stands, this is what we're expecting:

- My family (me, DH, my two girls, my mom-- who will be in charge of the kids) - 5
- The baby's family (mom, dad, brother) - 3
- Two midwives and one student midwife - 3
- Birth photographer - 1
- Baby

That's assuming nobody else drops by to crash the party (I wouldn't really care). So, me + baby + *12* extras. And as has been said already, that number won't bother me at all once we've really gotten going-- we won't call in the troops until I'm in active labor.
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#9 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:11 PM
 
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personally, I would be comfortable with that many people assuming I met each person prior to the big show. I birthed at a birth center with my first and was surprised at the extra people there (assistants and such) and although it seems obvious now, I wish I had known. My discomfort was only that I didn't actually know them though and not that they were there at all.

In your situation, and based on my own experiences, I'd request to meet all the people who would most likely be at the birth so I don't have to deal with introductions when I'm busy focusing on contractions. I'm all for apprentices (I allowed one at my birth ) and for the assistants the midwives need but I do like to know what to expect with the things I CAN actually know ahead of time.

Although, other than the medical people I've hired/allowed... I would probably only want my mom and my grandma if I have anyone other than my husband and child.
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#10 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:16 PM
 
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First birth: Midwife, midwife's assistant, doula. DH watched from the corner of the room (I never really wanted DH around while birthing.)

Second birth: my friend, the midwife (her assistant never made it), 16.5mo DD1, and DH (there to care for DD1- they were both outside when DD2 was born but came in a few minutes after.)

Third birth: DH watched from the doorway and the girls were playing on the computer in the other room.

If I were in your shoes, I wouldn't want the birth photographer, and I'd allow 3-4 "birth professionals" there. There will be 3 "patients" after you give birth, and it makes sense to have one midwife for each of you. If they want to bring in other midwives so they can get twin birthing experience, can't they bring them in place of their assistants rather than in addition to their assistants? Talk to your midwives about this at prenatal appts- let them know that the "birthing crowd" is getting too large, and ask for their input as far as how many people they really NEED there. If nothing else, some of the midwives and/or apprentices might wait in another room, but be available for one another if they need to take breaks.

Why can't the "friend you really want to be here" be the person watching the older kids? Do you really need her there with you in the birthing room, or do you simply want to share your special day with her? She'll see the babies within minutes of birth if she's watching the kids. And are you truly comfortable with your Mom and MIL being there, or can they come over a few hours later?

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18, and Jack, 12
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#11 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:35 PM
 
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My twin HB was also my first birth. Cast of characters in my 12 x 15 foot bed room:

MW (very experienced in twin HB)
2 assistants (only needed one, but might have needed both if there was a problem with one or both babes)
doula (doubled as photog)
DH
My mother

Total = 6 people + me (and two babes)

Now, I would say I had either just the right number of people, or one too many. Maybe if there had been any problems, the extra folk would have been helpful.

In your case, I would think the 2 "extra" MWs would double as assistants. Anyone else is just there as a spectator. Which if you're cool with, great. Otherwise keep less people under foot.

Agree with other posters - once I was on the birthing stool pushing I couldn't care less who was there.

Good luck and best wishes!

Mom to : Belle and Izzy
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#12 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ruth- I will not budge on the photographer This is my last birth and its a friend who is doing this for her portfolio. Her pictuers are amazing and I REALLy want some artsy pictures not just ones that have bad lighting etc.

My mom may not be here. My MIL is flying in from out of state, she will be the one designated to watch kiddos. Not be around for birth. My friend I'd really like her here for the birth. It was so special to me she allowed me there for her son and she wants to be here too. I would love to be able to give her such a special memory as well.

TBH its all the assistants that bother me. The midwives yup need all of them The assistants not so much. But I don't want to stop them from being able to learn either kwim? maybe just have to put a limit on how many assistants can come.

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#13 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 04:09 PM
 
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Originally Posted by turnquia View Post

TBH its all the assistants that bother me. The midwives yup need all of them The assistants not so much. But I don't want to stop them from being able to learn either kwim? maybe just have to put a limit on how many assistants can come.
I think it is completely reasonable to request that only your midwife bring her assistants and that the other midwives not bring their assistants with them. Or would that still feel like too many people? Maybe just 1 assistant?

Erika, mama to three beautiful kids (plus one gestating), and wife to one fantastic man.

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#14 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 06:54 PM
 
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TBH its all the assistants that bother me. The midwives yup need all of them The assistants not so much. But I don't want to stop them from being able to learn either kwim? maybe just have to put a limit on how many assistants can come.
I hired two midwives that work as a team. They usually bring one of their assistants with them - so three total. I told them I didn't want that, I only wanted the two midwives there (in case of emergency, one for baby and one for me). They were totally fine with that and really understanding. If I were you, I would not worry at all about the assistants getting to learn from your experience. I think it's great that you would be that generous, but this is your birth. You need to feel comfortable and three midwives seem sufficient for safety for a twin birth. If there are too many people around it could inhibit labor for you. It is especially concerning that you are not sure who will be there. This is something that you really need to get cleared up right now. If I were you, I would tell them the midwives only and not feel one bit guilty about not allowing the assistants. I think it's clear that you uncomfortable with having them there, and you should not have anyone at your birth that you are uncomfortable with.
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#15 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 08:56 PM
 
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My MW, doula, photographer, DH and someone to watch/remove my son if necessary. So 5, 6 if you count my 2yo.

SAH Mama to Cooper (3-9-08) and Sawyer (9-3-10).   
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#16 of 23 Old 07-13-2010, 10:05 PM
 
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I'd imagine in the very small chance of an emergency with you and both babies, that a midwife & assistant would work on you, and one midwife for each baby, so it may be reasonable to have 4 attending...but just ask, they know what's safe and if it's reasonable to just have the 3 midwives then I too wouldn't feel the least bit guilty that the assistants aren't present, they will have plenty of other birth opportunity's to learn from.

So for myself this is what I would imagine... myself, DH, midwife, assistant midwife, photographer, doula, my two children & two caregivers dedicated to the children's care. So 10, but everyone has a purpose, I think that's the most important part. This isn't a spectator's sport.

Christian SAHM & birth doula.
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#17 of 23 Old 07-14-2010, 02:28 AM
 
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It's still early, but I've been having this debate with myself since the test came out positive. Obviously DH and I will be there. The midwife and her assistant. Unless the kids are sleeping, I will have someone take them elsewhere... probably my dad. My SIL will be there as the photographer. And I feel like that's a little busy. I'm not thinking I need a doula since my mw was super helpful for support and comfort with my last baby. And I'm not sure if I want my mom there or not...

It does feel crowded even in your mind when you imagine them all in your bedroom or something doesn't it?

Bri helpmeet to Chaise mama to K(2/07)  M(3/09) & A(2/11)

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#18 of 23 Old 07-14-2010, 02:45 AM
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I'm not comfortable with anyone being there that isn't necessary. For me, that just means me and DP. Heck, if he was still at work, I'd probably be okay with that, too! I'm cool with my 3 year old being there, but no one else. I have a close friend who really wants to be there, but our ideas and experiences about birth are too drastically different for me to risk having nervous or negative energy around. There is a woman I work with who is 100% on the same page with me regarding all things birth, and I know she would love to be there to help out and she would probably be great and supportive, but still... she's mostly a stranger. I would LOVE to have some great pics, so if I ran across a birth photographer that was on the same page as me, I might just budge, but not for anyone else. I won't even let my mama be there - she is too high strung.

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#19 of 23 Old 07-14-2010, 05:33 PM
 
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I like as few people as possible. I'm having two midwives, a birth photog, and my dh. And my last labor was very fast, so I'm not even sure one of the midwives and the birth photog will make it.

Last time I had a midwife, a doula, and dh. The kids were all asleep.

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#20 of 23 Old 07-15-2010, 03:11 AM
 
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I called my midwife when my water broke and by the time she got here (not long) I was well into transition, almost ready to push. I barely knew she was there, I was so out of it. It wasn't until I pushed my daughter out that I realised there were actually THREE people there-- the midwife and two assistants. I thought there was only going to be one asst. I really had no idea! There could have been five extra people and I probably wouldn't have known.

That said, if I had to labor very long (before transition) with extra people around, I wouldn't have been happy. I really did not want ANYONE extra there at all. I figured I'd be hiding up in my bedroom when the midwife and assistant were here, but it worked out that they arrived just in time for action. I HAD labored for a long time before then, I just didn't call them until the end.

That was my experience, anyway. So you could treat it like you were going to the hospital-- don't go (AKA call them) until it's close to showtime. Of course it's not always easy to tell when that's going to happen, so I suppose you take a risk of UC'ing twins if you wait too long. Or in your situation, missing the midwife that's a few hours away that has more experience with twins.

Do you think they would stay in another area of your house when asked? At least until you're in or close to transition. Because by then I really doubt you'll notice!

Weirdo Mama to amazing Aurelia, age 9 & Ember Roslyn, age 3!
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#21 of 23 Old 07-16-2010, 01:49 AM
 
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I feel I could've written your very post. I, too, am expecting twins..our's in late Oct....and this will be my midwife's 1st twin birth....ever. She told me as soon as we discovered them at 21 wks that this drastically changed the birth plans but is taking precautions and has handled our privacy and my inhibitions about people very well. Dh and I did baby #7 completely unassisted and I loved that birth!! I am a no people there type of person. Mw has asked for 2 other midwives present, as she will be responsible for my care and 1 for each baby. Of those 2 one has immense twin experience which she thinks is neccessary given her lack of experience with twins and the other is just a midwife that is a dear friend of her's. She feels the need to have 1 certified midwife each for the 3 of us. Of the 3 midwives present 2 will have assistants, one's purpose is charting, the other's is gophering and an extra pair of hands to aid in needs fo them. I have also asked a dear friend to be here for it....a 1st for me since we have never had anyone else present but my dh and 1 mw and 1 assistant. Of our 8 children only our oldest daughter that is 9 will be present. So, to me, that is a TON of people. I find people to be a hindrance in a massive way. We have gone over the birth plan and I have expressed in no uncertain terms I want to just labor alone with dh. My mw will come in every so often to check heart tones and that's about it. Other than that we'll be in a birth pool tucked away in the bedroom. Everyone else will be free to enter upon pushing since once that phase starts I'm a bit oblivious to the rest of life. But overall, the plan is to labor alone with dh due to the fact I know pretty well there is a huge possibility that I will not progress with a "party" in the room.

We have about a 15x15 room and it will consist of:
dh and
9 yr old daughter
3 midwives (my main one and 1 for each baby)
2 assistants
1 dear friend that is a doula in training

So, in all that's 8 and then me!

Blessed wife of a firefighter/paramedic and mom to 10...including 2 sets of very surprise twins!....with a sweet tiny boy welcomed into heaven at 14 wks gestation in 9/09
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#22 of 23 Old 07-17-2010, 11:39 AM
 
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I can't handle being around people in labor, I've learned. This last birth was just me and DH, with the midwives in another room, just coming in periodically to check me. My mom and my kids were downstairs. It was great. I love the idea of having photographer or friends there, but it would really throw me off.

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#23 of 23 Old 07-17-2010, 03:00 PM
 
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With my last, I thought I would want a friend or two there. Once in labor, I didn't. I never called them. I had my mw, her backup and her apprentice, dh and my mom.
This time, I am having dh, mw, backup and apprentice. No one else. And I was and want to be alone with dh for the most part.

If I was having twins, I would expect more mw's, ect for support of mom and babies during labor and delivery, and I'd be okay with that. I'd not want others there. But DH is my rock, so as long as I have him, I'm good.

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