The last prenatal appointment my midwife wanted to 'check me', I was hesitant but said okay. It was extremely painful, I thought maybe since I had never had one..[But I could check my own cervix which didn't hurt at all]
Once I was in labor two days later when she arrived she wanted to check where I was at. I said okay but did not want it at all. It was extremely painful again and I was pushing with my feet up the bed to get away from her hand, and I was almost to the point of getting hysterical.
Are they always that painful? I just feel since my baby came, I think less than two days later,.. was it the exam or my baby being ready?
Did she strip the membranes or something? Is that why it hurt so bad and I bled afterwards?
I just feel EXTREMELY violated, and I think about it constantly.
I dont know if it was normal or not.
I wanted an intervention free birth, and when I think about my birth I just think about the pain of the exam[which was much more than the birth!]
I cant get over it.
Thank you for any answers.
Mama to Belly(5), homesteading in the desert with our chickens and sheep. Fish nerd, really into my reef tank. Baby due Sep 3rd!
However this time? No pain at all. It's not even uncomfortable. I think my cervix is in a different position.
You don't have to consent to these exams. Really, unless there is a question about the baby's position or some other reason, checking your cervix/baby's station will only satisfy curiosity. You could be dilated for 2 cm for weeks ... or you could be totally closed and go into labor quickly.
I'm so sorry that you are feeling so violated and upset. I would just keep in mind if you decide to have another baby in the future that it is YOUR choice whether to have the internals.
I was checked and never felt a bit more uncomfortable than when I checked myself. I'm pretty sure I (accidentally) stripped my own membranes just by checking myself out, since my water broke within minutes of my check in the shower.... but no matter who did it, it was never physically uncomfortable. It not only didn't compare to my birth (painwise), it didn't even compare to BH ctx. It didn't even compare to bending over to tie my shoes.
Please note that I am not judging you one bit. I'm just sharing an alternate experience. For me, internals were absolutely no big deal. I am abolutely not trying one bit to say that yours *should have* been not big deal though.
"Au milieu de l'hiver, j'ai découvert en moi un invincible été."
My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.
Subsequent ones at my later appts. were still painful and uncomfortable, but not quite as bad as the first one.
I felt so violated. Still do. To the point where after the birth I could hardly look at my midwife I felt so violated. I am just now starting to think about the birth without that being the only thing I can really focus on.
I am sorry you are feeling so violated. I know how hard that can be and how upsetting and disappointing it is. I wish I had some advice, but i will say it does get better. Be gentle with yourself. Maybe writing in a journal would help? And if you can, talk to your midwife. I didn't have the courage to at the time and I feel that it made things harder for me.
If your first exam was painful it might have been one of these factors, if it still hurt in labor it might have been a fear response resulting from the trauma of the first check.
So sorry mama, that sounds pretty traumatic.
We think green! Gentle mama to 3 amazing kiddos. Recovering from religion.
LIFEschooling. Extended NAKing. Graduated cloth diaperer.
I have had NONE so far this pregnancy and don't plan to, unless it's necessary when i'm in labor for some reason. Like others said there is really no reason for them in general.
However, a friend of mine said all her exams during labor were excruciating, and it sounded like she had a lot of them. She really liked her OB, but said the exams hurt so much that she kicked her several times! It doesn't sound like a good idea to me - that sort of stress can't be good for helping labor along. But I know my friend's membranes weren't being stripped, since her water broke at the beginning of labor. (So I don't think pain has to mean membrane stripping every time.)
I'm sorry this happened to you. Asking the midwife is probably a good idea. And for next time, remember that VEs really aren't very useful. Knowing dilation doesn't matter, since it can change so fast. I think it's better not to have them in most cases.
1) 26 weeks pregnant & in the hospital contracting every 5 minutes. That nurse was gentle & it only hurt a little bit. I was just HUGELY relieved to hear her say "high and closed."
2) The next day when I went back for the 2nd steroid shot. THAT ONE HURT. Different nurse.
3) This wasn't really a cervical check. but when my water broke at 32 weeks, the student midwife in the ER stuck the litmus paper in to make sure it was really broken. Don't know WHAT she was doing but it hurt like mad.
4) When I was starting to push, the dr. came running in saying "DON'T PUSH YOU MIGHT NOT BE READY." Then she checked. I was fully complete & was DEFINITELY READY. (I could have told you that!!) I didn't feel A THING at that point other than big baby head pressure!
If I had it to do over again, I'd have refused # 2 and # 3. Duh, I know my water broke, I'm not a moron!
Cervical checks are often overdone - there isn't really any reason to do them until you feel the urge to push, unless you want one.
Do you find pap smears and other gynecological examinations painful? What about putting medicine in, like for a yeast infection? I used to have a lot of difficulty with these things and found them very painful. After learning to deal better with them, I realized a lot of the pain was due to my mental discomfort. If you tense up your muscles it hurts more. If you are nervous it hurts more. If you expect it to hurt it hurts more. That doesn't mean you can make it painless by changing your attitude; you can probably make it less painful by focusing on relaxing through it. You should probably try to limit your cervical checks in the future now that you know how uncomfortable you are with them.