Birth in the 60's - unconscious - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 64 Old 06-24-2006, 01:35 AM
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This post has made me sad that my granny isn't around for me to ask about her births. She had 11 children (dad was born in 1945, and he's smack in the middle of the age range)! I'm fairly sure that they were bf'd as they were really poor. I'll have to ask dad if any of his brothers were born at home.

I don't know anything about my mom's first birth (in '66), I'm sure she's mentioned it but I can't remember if she was awake or not. Her second birth was in '68 and she recalls having around 50 hours of labor with no drugs, but then having a forceps delivery with some kind of 'block'. Not sure if the block was a spinal or a saddle block. She said she had a pretty bad episiotomy. I asked her why they had to do all that, and she said my brother 'was stuck at the shoulders'. She does not remember either of these births fondly. She didn't bf either of my half brothers.

When she had me in '82 she took lamaze cb classes with dad and prepared for an unmedicated birth. Apparently I kept flipping from transverse to breech so the doc asked mom if she wanted to do a c-section or try a version. As bad as sections are for some women, mom says this was her best birth. She was able to prepare for the birth and had a pretty good experience except for the spinal headache. She felt like an active participant in the decision to have a c/s. Dad was upset that he wasn't allowed to be in the room, I guess no one extra was allowed in the operating room then.
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#62 of 64 Old 06-24-2006, 04:04 PM
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For those wondering how babies got out during twilight sleep; not only were forceps used & episiotomies done, but often someone was pushing on their bellies to get the baby out! No wonder some were bruised all over!

One thing I keep thinking about all of this is, is how our Moms/Grandmothers gave birth was determined by their economic situation. Were women with more money giving birth in the hospital with drugs & then formula feeding? Also, those who wanted to give the appearance of having more money?

I'm not sure how my Mom's Mom gave birth, but I know she breastfed most of her children. I'm thinking it was do to them being pretty poor as much as her just thinking that's what breasts are for. My Dad's Mom didn't breastfeed, & it wouldn't surprise me if it had to do with my grandfather wanting to keep up the appearance of having more money.

Just something I think about....


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#63 of 64 Old 06-24-2006, 04:26 PM
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I agree with that.. My maternal grandmother was the same way- she only used formula with her children because it showed that she had $$!
How sad!!!
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#64 of 64 Old 06-24-2006, 04:59 PM
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As my mom tells it, the reason her first child was born at home in '62 was because she could not find a hospital that would allow my father to be present. It doesn't sound like she was so concerned about being put under, just that my dad wouldn't be around when it happened. She was living in Chicago and someone told her there was a Dr. Gregory White who did homebirths.

He was her o.b. again when she had her second child at home in '64. I think he basically made it just as the baby was coming out both times.

By the time she was pregnant with me, her third, my parents had moved and she was not able to find someone to attend a homebirth (fingerlakes region of N.Y.). But instead she just never made it to the hospital. So I guess I was technically a UC. She makes it sound like that was not her intention, but I am not so sure. I was born around 2 a.m. She claims my father was telling her "stop pushing" and she would say "I'm not pushing" and after a few minutes of that I was out.

When she had her last child in '68 we were living in the Catskill Mtns. in New York. This was another UC, but I am not quite sure if the plan was to have a doctor attend at home or to go to the hospital. I vaguely remember it because it was bedtime and my dad was reading to us and then would run into my parents bedroom and then come back and read some more and back and forth. And then at some point we went into their bedroom and met our new sibling.

Anyway, she had 4 for 4 homebirths in the 60's. I guess she is an exception. It is kind of interesting that she started down that path because of the aweful rule about dads not being present at delivery. Though I have an aunt that claims my mom was into all this natural lifestyle stuff and that is why she had homebirths. My mom sometimes makes herself sound kind of ditzy when she actually is very intelligent. That is a whole different thread about attitudes in the 60s.

My mom breastfed all of her children. At some point while still breastfeeding me, she also pumped for another woman who was trying to re-lactate. That woman lived in the country and in attempt to be modern was formula-feeding. Her child developed horrible allergies. The woman did eventually relactate.

I wish my mom would write all of this down sometime, about her births and the pumping. But she just kind of shrugs it off as an everyday thing. Which is good in a way, because my attitude towards homebirth and nursing has therefore been that it is just an everyday thing.

(p.s. Dr. Gregory White is the husband of the co-founder of LLL.)
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