Coming from the perspective of an epidural birth here-- but I did have labor for a few hours. ;-)
Physically what hurt the most was when I was in India and got very sick from a strain of flu. I felt that every bone and every muscle in my body was broken and I just wanted to go into a coma until it was over. They thought it was malaria, it was so bad, but it ended up just being a nasty strain of the flu.
Emotionally what hurt me the most was when my second baby needed to be tube-fed and suffered a lot for the first three years until we figured out what was going on with her. It was hard to not be able to participate with the very basic act of feeding your baby, and hurt even more that I could not comfort her through that difficult time.
So, anyway, that was more painful!
I feel so terrible for people who live with chronic debilitating pain. It takes such an incredible toll on the body, physically and emotionally.
Hemorrhagic Dengue is the worst acute pain I've ever been in. I had my babies at home in the water though, so maybe I would feel differently if I was in the hospital for a birth. I recommend it!
Trigeminal neuralgia is another one that's worse than labor pain for me. Thankfully mine is episodic rather than chronic like some people experience, so when it flares up I know it'll only last a few days. But again, it's the relentlessness that wears me down. Every time my hair brushes my face, or a breeze touches my cheek, or I chew or brush my teeth ... pretty much everything sends an electric shock feeling throughout half my face -- it's really awful. I don't know how chronic sufferers manage.
It's endemic here in the tropics : / We have 2 strains (of 4 existing) and I got the worse one, unfortunately. It lasted about 3 days of intense pain - I can't even describe how much it hurts - even the bottoms of your feet, so you can't walk without horrendous pain or lay in a bad. Plus I had a 105.6 fever, so I was passing out all the time during that stage of it (febrile - there are 3 parts to the illness). Then you get a 2-day respite and can take off your sunglasses for a little bit. Then blood out of my nose and mouth and fluid trapped under my skin. Platelets way down too. The doctor had treated about 200 patients for it and I was only #2 to have the hemorrhagic version, he said.
Then I got stuck with post-dengue syndrome, which lasted about a year. I think it cooked my brain- I couldn't remember anything or think how I used to and I was incredibly tired all the time.
Note though that I don't agree the release of the mutant male mosquitoes in Brazil.
I know what you mean about chronic illness - I have fibromyalgia - part of the reason we moved down here to the beach (water, heat are the best treatments I have found and it's much less than when I lived in the northeast, sometimes for days not being able to turn my head. Has only happened once since relocating to warmer environment, so I'm grateful for being able to do that. It is so grating to be in chronic pain though- I felt bad for my family because I got mad at them so easily when in pain.
I have a friend from high school who has trigeminal neuralgia (& MS). It sounds terrible :(
Novocaine for a root canal was terrible as well. Hopefully I won't ever need to do that again.
But maybe it sounds like I am comparing labor to these things- I'm not. many things are more painful than labor to me. That was just the MOST painful.
You know, for me, pain from something BAD (an injury, illness, or the like) has been what is worse. I had that lesson a couple weeks after a miscarriage when I suddenly got cramps that were like labor, but had a wrong bad terrible feeling to them that clearly telegraphed something was wrong, scary, and bad somewhere. Labor is not frightening like that; powerful cramping but healthy. It was almost the same feeling, cramping over an incomplete miscarriage, but the source was the difference.
So, anyway, that was more painful!
I agree. I had one too (incomplete for a few days, at home). The intense sorrow coupled with the labor was crushing in so many ways.
That sounds truly awful, aggie pop. I agree that the things I'm listing here are way, way beyond labor pain for me. As someone else said, labor pain is productive and has a whole different feel psychologically.
Well I just had emergency sugery yesterday and can honestly say that waking up in recovery was the worst pain of my life. I had abdominal surgery so they pumped my abdominal cavity full of gas and some of it got trapped between my liver and diaphram. I thought it was a heart attack, lots of morphine.
Single, student mama to 3 boys
I'm not sure I've experienced anything as intense and overwhelming as labor. But I think a lot of the pain was alleviated by the "end goal" of having a sweet babe in my arms soon- whereas with pain caused by various illnesses/injuries, I didn't KNOW the pain would ever end, per se. And I definitely didn't have as much of a reward at the end of the suffering.
A bad flu
Nursing a noob that's not any good at nursing
Mama to Jet 6/05, Marvel 8/06 and Cash and Fox 2/09
Expecting Ada Marianne 11/14
Michelle mom to DD , DS , & lil DD and spending my days
then, went in to labor few days later, and the memory of the kidney stone was very fresh.
It was a home birth, I remember thinking: when it gets to the same level as the kidney stone pain, I will have to ask for pain relief.
I kept waiting, I birthed an 11pounds 2 onces baby...it never reached the pain I had just few days ago with kidney stones.
pathological pain is often worse, because there is anxiety associated to it, an there is very little natural mechanisms to help us with pain perception.
Labor was not difficult compared to what I'd been through with these diseases.
I had a natural childbirth with no pain meds, and the pain I experienced with it was positive, moving me toward a positive end. Even the transition phase did not compare to the relentless pain of disease.
next baby... I'm doing everything in my power to get her in a nice position to avoid that hellish feeling of my body going through a meat grinder. I felt the pain in my hip bones and sacrum like my bones were being broken apart for 22 hours, sometimes even in between contractions. It was NOT normal.
ETA: The pain with these was definitely worse because it served no purpose. Labor pains were something to embrace and explore, whereas a back spasm is just torture.
Single mama to an only born November 2012.
Co-sleeping, vaxing, baby-wearing, sometimes cloth diapering, car seat safety advocate. Still nursing with no end in sight