I was at a home birth, it went really well, everything was beautiful and perfect and wonderful. Afterwards on the way home I got to wondering how much things had changed since my son was born and the midwife told be to "Let this one be an only for as long as possible." Which, I was fairly offended by. Later, when I asked the mom no one had said anything even remotely similar to her.
So, tell me, What's the most outrageous things someone has said to you about labor or birth?
DD1 was my worst birth experience. Not terrible but not great. The doctor, the hospital, nurses, everything was just so ridiculous. Anyway, DD1 was small, 5 lb. 7oz. and the practice gave me sooo much grief over her being "too small" even though she was perfectly healthy with ZERO problems. But then the OB-gyn that attended the birth (who I never went back to!) said that if I ever had a baby over 6 lbs that I would need a C-section.
Two beautiful natural births of 7 lb babies later....
I experienced two difficult labors. I have an adroid pelvis and my first labor was 57 hours long with a full dilation 4 hr second stage... and it ended in a C Section. Two years later, second baby, virtually the same labor minus the halluicnations, screaming, BP bottoming out and time, this one was "only" about 26 hrs with a 2 hr + pushing stage... ending in a C Section. Thirteen years after my first child was born (and eleven years after my second) I became pregnant with my third. Again, I had a quadruple high risk pregnancy (pre term labor, on bedrest again since 14 weeks, dealing with a chronic pain issue unrelated to pregnancy plus the aformentioned android pelvis.) We decided that a C Section, as long as I went into labor spontaneously first (not a problem as I had been contracting, as I had with all my pregnancies since 12 weeks) and the fluid showed the lungs were mature, would be our best option.
Our dd was born a bit early I had had so many issues with preterm labor, constant painful contractions, dilation, I had no cervical length since about 24 wks, and didn't know when I got pregnant.Thus, I had no accurate due date. She was a tiny, but healthy baby a little over 5 lbs. One of my friends, who I love dearly, but who had uncomplicated easy pregnancies, short uncomplicated home births (she rarely pushed more than 3 times for each child to be born) said to me, "Oh, Sage was so tiny. You should have at least tried to have a vaginal birth. Maybe she could have been born vaginally." Sadly a few other people threw the same judgmental comment my way. Did they think it was "helpful?"
ARUGHGHGHGHGHHG! Did they think I could go back and do it again? Had any of them had to handle a high risk delivery while dealing with multiple complications AND a chronic pain issue? No. None of them had an adroid pelvis, and few of them even knew what it was or the problems it causes in pregnancy and childbirth.
To me, the most harmful things said to me were from people who thought they were "helping." Like the woman at a LLL meeting who shoved the book The Silent Knife in my hands only weeks after my first unwanted C Section, when I hadn't even processed my emotions about it yet and was still terribly mourning the loss of my "perfect birth" that would NEVER happen.
I've learned in my work as a post partum doula and as a lactation consultant AND as a mother that women who are recently post partum and women who are pregnant are often in a fragile and shaky emotional state. They are open to not only suggestion, but to criticism. One of the worst things one can do to a mother who has recently given birth and has shared her birth story with us is to say, "Well, why didn't you just...?" follow that with anything. Just listen and be kind. This isn't the time to give advice or suggestions. Just let her tell her story, listen and be happy she felt you were trustworthy enough to share such an emotional experience with you.
Some women have "rollers" or hard to hit veins and they are difficult to find and extract blood from or to start an IV in. Of course, a more experienced nurse or flebbotamist )sp?) would have explained that your veins were hard to hit, as I'm sure she wanted you to know why she kept sticking you. Saying "Horrible" to a pregnant woman about her body is a bit extreme, though. Some people tend to "think out loud" and don't even realize patients are listening.
(and Maggie --- phlebotomist. That's a crazy tricky one, and even spelled correctly it still gets underlined in spell-check!)
Mom to two boys, ages 8 and 11, and one blessing due May 8th.
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I've been told that the policy at the hospital here is "one hour labor=1 cm dilated". Wow.....if I'd have given birth there with dr and nurses (I gave birth there twice but with a midwife so had nothing to do with dr. or nurses or hospital policy), both of my kids would've been born in the hallway! With my daughter I went from 6cm dilated to babe in arms in less than 2 hours and with my son, from 5 cm to babe in arms in 45 minutes! (yeah....ouch!!!)
oh...and while were at it....I really wish people would get out of their head that a fast labor is easy. It's not. Yeah, it's over quickly, but your body doesn't have time to produce endorphins, you get no break or relief, and think about it; your body is stretching and opening the same amount but in a much, much shorter time. It's intense and overwheming! I don't want to start a "long labor vs fast labor" competition here, all labors have their ups and down. I'm just fed up of people assuming I had easy labors just because they were fast.
That's a much better way to handle the situation. Like I said you always want to explain to a patient if you have to stick them more than once.
Thanks for the spelling. I work in health care and that's one thing I always misspell. ♡♥
I am well aware that some shorter labors can be very rough.
And yes, a little well intentioned questioning and suggestions can be helpful if a pregnant mom is still making decisions that will affect her birth, but when it's said and done, only support is appropriate.
No, don't worry. I didn't think so at all. I'm a post partum doula and have worked with many women with short and very intense, painful births. There's often not time for the head to mold and the perineum to gently stretch! OW! I've Doula-ed enough moms with 3rd and 4th degree tears from "short" labors to know they can be quite intense.
I just wanted to clarify that by this one friend's own admittance, she did have short and fairly easy labors, that's all. Her telling me "you should have tried to have Sage vaginally" simply because Sage was "small" brought up a lot of issues that I didn't need to deal with. I think her short easy labors were more the exception than the rule.
"You'll never be able to give birth vaginally." Said to me during my first VBAC, by one of two nurses who had spent the last hour physically holding me down in a position that made it impossible for me to push my baby out, while I begged them to let go and let me change positions. I gave birth while they were setting up the OR for my c-section.
"Women... think they know all about giving birth because they read about it online." Said to me by my doctor for my second baby, when I tried to talk to him about my birth plan. I was scared to change doctors because he was the only one I could find who was supportive of VBACs (see above quote for how well that worked out).
"You're not progressing fast enough." Said to me upon admission to the hospital with my first baby, when I honestly wasn't even sure I was in labor yet. They let me walk the halls for an hour, and then insisted on giving me Pitocin. Twenty-four hours later, I ended up with my first c-section.
And, just silly, "Oh, you don't want to have your baby so close to Christmas!" Said to me by a well-meaning acquaintance, who apparently never stopped to consider that I don't really have much choice in the matter!
At one point during my labor, it looked like vacuum delivery might be possible as a way to avoid a c-section. The OB on call told me, "We can try vacuum, but you'll never be the same again."
Uh...and what is that supposed to mean? Because I'd be the same again after a c-section? Or a vaginal birth?
Dude, it's birth. Of course I'm not going to be the same again, no matter what happens. It's like the biggest most life changing thing ever.
Living in Wisconsin with my partner of 20+ years and our DD(Born 10/09/08 ). Why CI Mama? Because I love contact improvisation!