After your first birth - did you say "Never Again"? - Mothering Forums
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Birth and Beyond > After your first birth - did you say "Never Again"?
annakiss's Avatar annakiss 12:57 PM 04-30-2006
I have been thinking about the differences between my two births recently and it seems (which I knew before but am re-realizing) that my first birth was somewhat traumatic for several reasons. I am now trying to tease those reasons apart. In so doing, I have to ask, am I the only one who upon giving birth (naturally) said, "Never again," due to the pain/intensity/shockingness of it?

Was it because it was all new to me and unfamiliar? Or was it because of Aleks' cleft? I had a very straight-forward birth, ftr, though he was posterior and I had a lot of back labor. Minor tear not requiring suture, no hemmorhage, surrounded by love, seemed to follow my instinctual needs to switch positions, etc...

eta - both of my births were at home too. my mom caught my DS1, but he was born with a cleft lip & palate that has required 5 surgeries to date, so that really colors my birth a lot. In fact, you can see my birth from the Mothering frontpage.


OnTheBrink's Avatar OnTheBrink 01:00 PM 04-30-2006
Well, my first birth was a cesarean (no labor), so that doesn't really count. But my first natural birth was John's and - yes - I said "never again." In part, we are happy with just two kids. But a big part of it was that I hated it. I know I'm not supposed to say that here (hating natural births), but I really think it sucked!
rmzbm's Avatar rmzbm 01:04 PM 04-30-2006
I said "never again" after my 1st, 2nd, 3rd, & 4th births...and now am eagerly anticipating more. (And my youngest is only a month old...) I do think it's kind of the shock of it all.
rmzbm's Avatar rmzbm 01:06 PM 04-30-2006
Originally Posted by OnTheBrink
Well, my first birth was a cesarean (no labor), so that doesn't really count.
Why wouldn't that count??
Avani's Avatar Avani 01:08 PM 04-30-2006
I only said that after my third.Somehow i was traumatized by the quickness and intensity and it freaked me out.Luckily with my 4th it was much calmer and slower and i feel perfectly fine about having my 5th!Oh and BTW i took Hypnobirthing while pregnant with number 4 to try and help with my anxieties and it was great.
OnTheBrink's Avatar OnTheBrink 01:09 PM 04-30-2006
Well, my first birth was a cesarean (no labor), so that doesn't really count.
Why wouldn't that count??
Oh, I think a birth by cesarean is very much a birth! But she asked about giving birth naturally, which a cesarean is not!

Originally Posted by annakiss
In so doing, I have to ask, am I the only one who upon giving birth (naturally) said, "Never again," due to the pain/intensity/shockingness of it?
Incidentally, it was not my cesarean that made me afraid of giving birth!
Sandrine's Avatar Sandrine 01:10 PM 04-30-2006
I did the same but with my 2nd. During the pg, i never thought that she was going to be the last one. I kept joking with dh that he had to charm me for the third. She came out with a low temp, her heart beat was not regular and they went and put her in a incubator. That scared me for sure and at that time I said never again.

I think we forget in a way how it was. As you can see i'm will have another one but with this one, i feel like it's the last one already. I'm still scared that the baby may have problems like his/her big sis but i have faith that it will be fine too. I guess, i'm getting ready mentaly for whatever can happen at that time.
annakiss's Avatar annakiss 01:13 PM 04-30-2006
Originally Posted by OnTheBrink
Incidentally, it was not my cesarean that made me afraid of giving birth!
Interestingly, I'm not afraid of birth at all. But it does sort of suck a lot. I'm still really fascinated by it and am in the early stages of becoming a midwife. There is a part of me that would love to have another baby, and it's not fear of birth that is the deciding factor nixing that idea, it's actually the fascination with it that makes me want to. Oh, and all the crazy in-love hormones I got. Being high for the first three months was great! (this only after my second birth though)
rmzbm's Avatar rmzbm 01:14 PM 04-30-2006
Oh, gotcha...I missed that part!!
I just didn't want you or anyone thinking c-section = not birth. I had sections & they don't/didn't scare me like natural birth either.
WendyC's Avatar WendyC 01:15 PM 04-30-2006
It was so freaken hard, so freaken painful... yeah, I had nothing but empathy for those who get scared and choose drugs. But looking back, I am proud of my strength - and I want another chance. I want badly to be able to do it again and this time get it right. (homebirth transfer, due to premature pushing) At the time I remember thinking - why the heck did I do this - but I think thats just normal.

I too was shocked by how awful it felt - where was my orgasm??? I want my orgasm!

Yeah, well - next time right???
eirual's Avatar eirual 01:16 PM 04-30-2006
Nope, you're not the only one. Those feelings were strongest DURING labour though. I was thinking- My god, how could someone who's been through this ever decide to put themselves through this again??

Ignorance was bliss not knowing what to expect from labour, after all, I could be one of the lucky ones that finds birthing orgasmic right?! But when the pain came i had no choice but to just deal with it as it came. Now the only way I'd do it again is to know that I'd have a birthing tub and i'd put all my faith in that, that having a tub will make it all much more bareable.

I find it also helps to consider the alternatives. As much as it hurt, it was and is what I want(ed). I think of epidurals not working and being stuck on a hospital bed feeling everything and being able to do nothing about it. I think of epidural working too well and not being able to push, then having to resort to a c-section. I think of recovery- drugged up and in the hosp with babe in a nursery vs. feeling very aware at home with babe in your arms (although i got transfered to the hosp for what turned out to be nothing after my brith and babe went to nursery- my only regret). These thoughts all restore my faith in natural birth. Although it's painful it's 100% worth it!
Ruthla's Avatar Ruthla 01:19 PM 04-30-2006
I'm not afraid of birth at all. IMO, giving birth is the easy part of the whole pg/birth/parenting thing!
annakiss's Avatar annakiss 01:21 PM 04-30-2006
Originally Posted by Ruthla
I'm not afraid of birth at all. IMO, giving birth is the easy part of the whole pg/birth/parenting thing!
Again, I'm not afraid of birth. It just hurts a lot.
LavenderMae's Avatar LavenderMae 01:27 PM 04-30-2006
I'm the opposite I guess. After my first birth (which was an unplanned UC) I thought that was amazing I could definitly do that again. Even after my son's hospital birth which was horrid and extremely painful thanks to pitocin, I didn't think I would never do that again but I did think I'll never go to ob's or have a hospital birth again. Truly it's the morning sickness that I can't handle and that I said after my ds that I woud never get pregnant again because of it. But I guess I changed my mind. Although I've already said this one will be our last. I can't go through morning sickness again, ever.
earthmama369's Avatar earthmama369 01:33 PM 04-30-2006
DURING my first labor I said never again! In fact, I believe I stated with all sincerity that dh was never going to get the chance to make pregnancy even a remote possibility, ever again.

After birth I was floating pretty high on endorphins and thought climbing Mt. Everest might be a nice way to round out the day.
BellinghamCrunchie's Avatar BellinghamCrunchie 01:37 PM 04-30-2006
Originally Posted by annakiss
I In so doing, I have to ask, am I the only one who upon giving birth (naturally) said, "Never again," due to the pain/intensity/shockingness of it?
I said that not once, but several times, during and after labor.

Now, 16 mths later, its amazing how the body, or the mind, forgets... I'd go through it again. I'd be scared, but I think I could better prepare myself the second time. Or so I tell myself
Belle's Avatar Belle 02:13 PM 04-30-2006
Actually for me one of my first thoughts was "I have to go through another 9 months of barfing to be able to do that again" For me the labor wasn't that bad, it was the pregnancy that sucked. I'm not looking forward to that again.
veganf's Avatar veganf 02:20 PM 04-30-2006
Nope. But after my second one I was really overwhelmed and knew I wanted a break for a while.
Birth I don't mind. It's pregnancy that SUCKS!!

- Krista
broodymama's Avatar broodymama 02:26 PM 04-30-2006
I don't remember if I said anything like that after the birth, but I remember quite clearly, when I was getting ready to push, saying "I don't want a kid, I just want my cats!!!!"

Obviously, that was quickly forgotten.
the_lissa's Avatar the_lissa 02:29 PM 04-30-2006
I wanted to do it again right away.
Kathryn's Avatar Kathryn 02:33 PM 04-30-2006
Actually, as soon as she was out, my first thought was "I can't wait to do this again". It was so amazing and empowering to be able to prove to myself that my body was able to do what it was meant to do.
cottonwood's Avatar cottonwood 03:50 PM 04-30-2006
I'm still really fascinated by it and am in the early stages of becoming a midwife.

After your first birth - did you say "Never Again"?
Yes. In the first few minutes after each birth I said words to this effect. All of my births have been incredibly painful. "Torturous" is not an exaggeration. I did, though, love and cherish parts of my last three births that did make me want to do it again anyway -- after those first few minutes postpartum, anyway.

When I said it about my first birth, though, I meant it literally. I wouldn't undo it if it meant not having my son, but I wouldn't give birth again if it meant reliving that. ETA: it wasn't about what my body was doing -- like I said, all my births were painful -- but about the mismanagement of the labor and abuse from the labor attendant. On top of the pain it was really too much and left me very depressed and angry for a good long time. The reason that I did do it again was that I believed it would be different the next time. And it was.
boscopup's Avatar boscopup 05:39 PM 04-30-2006
My DH was talking about #2 as I was being wheeled to the postpartum unit. He was really proud of me and amazed at how well I birthed our child naturally (he originally thought I'd be screaming for an epi right away - HA - I didn't!) I didn't say it out loud, but internally, I was thinking "NEVER AGAIN". I very clearly remember that!

Now at this point, I'm not exactly sure what made me think that... It was all about the pushing baby out phase though. Labor was not bad for me (2.5 hours from first contraction to baby screaming, and my contractions didn't get to the "I don't know if I can do this anymore" point until I was in transition, and it only took 3 pushes to get him out). I'm not sure if it was the ring of fire, or if it was the stitching they did for my 1st degree tear (I pushed him out WAY too fast - he was <4 lbs and I still tore).

If I go full term this time, I will use a midwife who will not do directed pushing. I think my birth would have been better if I'd been allowed to listen to my body and push when my body said to, not when the nurse said a contraction was happening (I didn't feel the contractions during the pushing phase).

My birth was natural, but it was also in a hospital with the directed pushing stuff that goes on, plus I was terrified about whether my baby would even be able to breathe or not (he was 29w4d), so that first scream I heard was music to my ears! I really do think the worst part though was the stitching afterward, even though they used meds to numb me, so I wasn't feeling it. I guess I was just uncomfortable with them being down there for 45 minutes stitching me (and why does it take 45 minutes to stitch a 1st degree tear?!?!?). Oh, and it was a student learning how to stitch, I think. A guy was standing behind her directing her in the process.

Also, perhaps I might have thought differently if I'd gotten to hold my baby after the birth, but due to his preemieness, I got one kiss on the forehead, and then he was gone. So I also had issues (for weeks) of feeling like I hadn't just given birth, feeling like I wasn't a mother, etc. So had I been birthing a full term baby and able to hold the baby, perhaps I wouldn't have thought the "NEVER AGAIN" thing? I don't know. We'll see how the next one turns out! I obviously changed my mind.
dvons's Avatar dvons 06:25 PM 04-30-2006
After #1 I remember thinking (and possibly vocalizeing) "I could totally do that again". She was induced and I had no pain meds but still it seemed to go OK. That's probably why we ended up #2 17 months later. #2 was a non induced labor and a lot easier to handle until 7cm when we figured out that he was coming down ear first and it took 5 hours of manueuvering me into different positions/locations to get him to turn (and he only did so after the midwife had actually got on the phone to get a C-Section room ready). After him I said "I could do that again but I don't want to any time soon" thus the difference between #2 and #3 will be 3.5 years.

storychick's Avatar storychick 07:37 PM 04-30-2006
I didn't say never again after either of my births, I dont think. After the first trimester, definitely. Morning sickness was much worse for me to cope with than labor.

After my second, I actually said "well, that wasn't even taxing!" My mw still laughs about that.

We are TTC#3 and I am very much looking forward to birthing again. I am not so much looking forward to the very beginning and very end of pregnancy. But without it I wouldnt so much appreciate that lovely 2nd trimester.

Mama2 '05'06's Avatar Mama2 '05'06 07:58 PM 04-30-2006
My dh said he had a name for the next baby about 4 weeks after dd was born. I wasn't sure if I was ready for that yet! By about 5 months I wanted another- I thought! I got pg at 6 months pp and by the time I was 2 1/2 months along was wondering why I wanted to pg again and go through all this again. But there's no turning back now- baby's due in just 14 weeks.
Beeblebrox's Avatar Beeblebrox 10:14 PM 04-30-2006
This is going to sound horrible, but it wasn't the birth process that made me say that. It was the PP period, struggling with depression and a high need baby that made me say, "no way in *@!#@ can I do this again."

I don't feel that way any longer though. As she's gotten older and I've climbed out of my depression I feel more optimisic about the future.
lacysmommy's Avatar lacysmommy 10:46 PM 04-30-2006
I said never again when I was transitioning, but I wanted another baby right away after she was born (well, right away meaning in a couple years!).
caned & able's Avatar caned & able 11:09 PM 04-30-2006
I always knew I wanted five!!
mamafaye's Avatar mamafaye 12:06 AM 05-01-2006
I totally know what you mean!! After my first I was traumatized even though it was a great home birth. It just hurt, hurt, hurt way more than I expected it to. When I was in labor I not only did not want to have another baby, I didn't want to be a midwife anymore either. Anyway, my second birth was great, almost cathartic because it still hurt, but I knew I could handle it, so it didn't hurt the same, ya know?
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