I am due with baby #2 in November, and we've asked my MIL to be present during our home birth to attend to our 2 year old. I fully trust her, or else we would never have asked her to be present. Although she doesn't fully understand home birth, she is supportive of our choices and wants to learn more. I'm not worried about her bringing negativity at all. (My own mom would be a whole different story...)
So, I am trying to think about how I can prepare her to be at our house during the labor and birth. Her primary role will be to care for our son, so that may mean she is off entertaining him in another part of the house if that's what he wants to be doing. I'll make sure she knows her role, and that our son is welcome to be as involved (or not) as he wants.
So, she could be present in the room for the actual birth or not. Aside from letting her know what her role will be, I want her to be as prepared as possible to understand and be comfortable with what she might see. So far, I have the following things:
-Invite her to a few prenatal appointments with my midwife, including the home visit at 36 weeks
-Suggest she watch The Business of Being Born
-Suggest she watch some home birth videos on YouTube (I'd provide links to specific videos)
I'm also trying to come up with things for her to read that will explain the process of birth (she had two c/s herself) and the importance of the atmosphere of the birth and mental state of those present.
I've read all the most common birth books and have them in my library, but I can't remember which books say what. For example, Ina May's Guide to Childbirth is great, but the second half of the book, as I recall, deals a lot with specific interventions or common practices and why they may or may not be good. I don't know that she really needs that kind of info. Maybe I need to go skim through some of my books to remember what all they contain.
I don't know if I need to ask her to read an entire book or not, but at least I'd love some links to info that will help prepare her. Does anyone have suggestions? Anyone have advice from your own experiences of preparing someone to be present who had little natural birth knowledge beforehand?
I think you already have good ideas about how to prepare her. I had my in-laws watch "The Business of Being Born". They weren't judgmental about homebirth, but it opened their eyes to why I am doing this and what I hope my birth is like. They won't be present at the birth, but I'm glad we're on the same page.
I also think it's great that she will go to a couple prenatal appointments with you, meeting the midwife is a good idea since she will be in your home during the birth. Maybe your midwife will have suggestions as well.
Best of luck!
I got tired of my signature, but I still love my children and husband and miss my little brother.
Yes! While I get along well with my mother and MIL, I don't think either of them are the right personality to attend my birth. My MIL is under the impression that I need to be given something for the pain, and I'm like "uhhh...." And my mother will probably freak out over something that is normal, she doesn't believe that babies born underwater don't drown because they aren't stimulated to breath until they touch air, lol.
This is interesting, as my mil will be here and I haven't thought about preparing her at all-eek. Maybe we should watch that docu when she gets here. She won't read anything prior, so books are out. I'm leaving it up to her to watch the delivery or not. If she's here for a prenatal she can come with me to my mw to ask questions and tour the birth center for if we make it there. Odd, I got lots of books for the kids in case they want to watch, but blanked out on anyone else :)
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