Really regretting that I will have a hospital birth... - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 01:39 AM
 
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You've gotten some excellent advice here that I can't even add to. I just wanted to give you some support and say that it is absolutely possible to have a wonderful hospital birth (I've had two.) As others have said, talking with the hospital beforehand is really helpful, as is having a strong advocate in your corner, whether it be your DH or a doula.

Good luck!
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#32 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 04:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Viriditas View Post
1. Talk to your doctor confidently and authoritatively about the specific details of your birth plan. Don't say, "I think it would be good if I could move around during labor." Say, "I WILL be moving around during labor. Will I encounter any problems when I ask for a hep lock/no IV and refuse continuous fetal monitoring?" A lot of doctors will give lip service to a birth plan, but not follow through. Nevertheless, I think it's important that s/he knows your wishes.

2. Make sure the nurses and hospital staff are also familiar with your birth plan.

3. Make it clear to your husband that a very important part of his job during the birth is to be firm with the hospital staff about your choices and defend your right to labor however you want. You really need his support so you can concentrate on your labor.

4. Get a doula!!!

5. Don't get intimidated by the hospital staff! This is YOUR labor and you have to do what you need to do. If the nurses or doctor get pissy with you, let them.

Best of luck wherever you end up!
It seems like one of the biggest mistakes women make in the hospital is being bullied! Stand up for your rights and beliefs, and have support people who will do it FOR YOU!

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Originally Posted by meganmarie View Post
I am assuming that at this point, your decision is made and that what you most want now is confidence, support and practical advice for your decision.

I have had two successful hospital births - 100% intervention-free. I know others who have also gotten natural birth in a hospital. So please - believe it can be done, and put aside your fear! There are some steps you can and should take to help things. Here's what worked for me:

1. Go to the hospital as late as possible. My Bradley classes said, wait until cx have been 4 min apart AND 1 minute long for 1 full hour (remember 4-1-1) Also, you should be emotionally feeling serious, stressed and inward-focused (not happy, excited and chatty) as this is a signpost for the 2nd stage of labor. Following this advice got me to the hospital at 9-10 cm dilated both times - so I spent 90% of labor doing whatever the **** I wanted at home. Lots of walking, sitting on the birth ball, easing my pain in the shower, getting lovely back rubs from DH and doula, etc.

2. Get a doula. Its late but you never know when a doula may have a last-minute opening in her schedule (client gave birth early etc.) so get the list of local doulas from the DONA site, and just start calling. Spending $600 on a doula is less than the $3000 for a home-birth and believe me your DH will be grateful for the help. Apprentice doulas may even work free to get certified. When I got to the hospital, I was completely out of it and unable to communicate. DH was a stressed out wreck poor thing, just holding my hand. The doula calmly handed over my birth plan, gently mentioned how the birth plan said I didn't want an IV or hep lock, and in a thousand subtle ways nudged things into the right place. She also helped us decide on exactly the right time to leave for the hospital so we timed it right.

3. Get your OB to sign off on your birth plan in advance. Ask him/her to put a signature on it. Review it with every doc in the practice, if possible. Ask them to place a signed copy in your medical file (which will be at the hospital). And obviously also bring it along with you. Your OB may not show up right away and this will help ensure the RNs or the resident on-call defer to the birth plan that your doctor has agreed to honor, even if they can't reach him.

4. Make DH memorize the following words "We want all newborn procedures conducted in our presence and with our express consent." And here's a little-known secret: tell the nurses you want to wait and give baby the first bath yourselves, at home! The bath can be a huge reason for mother-baby separation after birth - it gives them an excuse to take baby to the nursery, where they could do all kinds of things behind your back in addition to the bath, and then post-bath baby's temp always drops (surprise!) which is an excuse to stick baby under the warmer to "regulate the temperature" for 2-3 hours During this time, you are quietly going insane. I fell for this b-s in birth #1 and stood my ground with #2 - "Thanks but no thanks, no bath for us - just towel her dry please!" and was so glad I did, she never left my side.

Have you taken the hospital tour? On the tour generally the nurse will tell you what they usually do "routinely" and you can ask whether that can be avoided if the doctor says so. Their reaction will tell you a lot about what to expect.

When it comes to being induced, just say no. It is hard, I know. The latest trick seems to be using low amniotic fluid as an excuse to induce, which is not justified unless there are other signs that baby is not doing well. Drink a lot of water before any u/s (or even better, refuse the u/s!) as that can help your fluid levels. Going past your due date is also not an evidence-based reason to induce until close to 42 weeks again unless there are other signs baby is not doing well. If you are feeling pressure to induce for what you believe is a flimsy reason, and are having trouble standing up to the doc, try playing along "oh, i see what you mean, let me discuss this with dh and we'll call the office to schedule the induction" and then turning off your phone.
In terms of avoiding c-section, based on the experience of my many, many friends who have been cut open for no good reason, it is almost always due to baby being "stuck" or labor "failing to progress." All of them were trapped lying in bed with epidurals and fetal monitors and IVs. If you can stay out of bed, change positions, get on your hands and knees, squat to open up the pelvis, etc., that will greatly reduce the chances of this happening to you.

Good luck! You can do it. Look forward to hearing your happy birth story - hopefully soon!
Another great thing about refusing to let them bathe your baby is that they will wear gloves when handleling baby, reducing exposure to nasty hospital germs! (SuperBug anyone? )

I just strongly agree with other bolded statements!

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If every fiber of your being tells you not to go to the hospital, stay home.
FOR REAL! Listen to your HEART! Listen to you BODY! Listen to YOURSELF!
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#33 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 07:56 AM
 
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I did the shot with my first two, it was the only thing we did do in the hosp but this time I have the oral drops. Personally, with the research I have done, I wouldn't do the injection unless there was trauma, severe bruising or premiee birth.

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#34 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 08:31 AM
 
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I am one who understands that $3000 either cash or debt is a lot for some people. It would be a mountainous, overwhelming amount for us!!

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I dont want to end up being induced and I dont want to end up with a C section. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to make a hospital birth better? I know that its better if you can be up and moving around during labor, but will most hospitals let you do this, if you dont get an epidural?
I have had three hospital births. Not my first choice, but at the time I was forced to decide between hospital and unassisted birth, and we just weren't confident about UC for many reasons.

What I learned after my first birth was that I needed to be strong, well-educated about birth, and able to stand up for myself. That served me well in the next two. I also learned that the longer you're in the hospital, the more opportunity you give them to pester you and try to intervene, so the last two times I have stayed home until I knew I was *really* heavily into labor (so the ctx weren't going to slow down and then have them say "Oh, we need to keep this going, here's some Pitocin!").

I also refused IV but accepted a heplock, so that they didn't have the IV excuse to keep me in bed. I also specified intermittent monitoring rather than havign those belts strapped around your belly the whole time. That's another tether to the bed you don't want. You should also know that they can listen to the baby without making you like on your back. They can do it just fine while you're standing up, or on hands and knees. Do not let them force you to lie on your back for delivery. Hand's and knees was very good for me (with two very large babies) and it is hardly "inconvenient" for the baby to be caught from that position, especially if you are up on the bed.
There are lots of ways you can promote a healthy, intervention free birth. And you'll get lots of ideas here.

I think primarily you need to be confident enough to say "NO!" and to insist on what you know is right for you and your baby. It is very, very hard to refuse procedures under pressure and some doctors will be manipulative and pull the "dead baby" card ("If you do not let me break your waters/cut an episiotomy/put you on Pit/whatever....your baby will die!")
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#35 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 08:40 AM
 
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I had a wonderful, intervention free, natural hospital birth with my DS.

Here's what I would do:

* Labour at home as long as possible.
Read "Natural Childbirth - The Bradley Method" by McCutcheon-Rosegg & Bradley and educate yourself on on how to get your DH /support person involved with your birth. The photos are hilarious (think pornstar mo's and tan lines) but the advice is great. It tells your partner how to time contractions and gives some strategies to manage pain drug free. This means that you can prolong your birth at home as long as possible.

2. When you get to the hospital, take along anything that makes you comfortable but hopefully, you'll have read the Bradley book and you'll already be at 8cm and thus wont give a patooie what music is playing in the background, lol. Let your partner be an excellent advocate for you.

3. Dont be afraid to get the sheets dirty.
Hey, your at hospital, but your still the boss. Labour in any position you want to. Grab an extra pillow or two. Ask for a jug of water. In my experience, the midwives were great with this. They want your labour to be successful - and they're not surgeons - so they are might be more pro-natural than you might think.

4. Tell the midwives you want to go natural.
Hospitals are actually used to women screaming for epidurals, not telling them to put the needle away. So they gear up for intervention. If you say - I'm going natural (and you really mean it) they will support you more than you might think

5. Your ped is a surgeon. He is there to cut out babies and stitch you up. Dont expect him to get involved too much (mine sat reclined on a chair in the background) -which was great. And dont expect him to discuss anything you've talked about before (like birth plans). TALK TO YOUR MIDWIVES & NURSES. They will be the real angels on the day.

6. Give your partner the responsibility of telling the Dr's about your birth wishes. Just concern yourself with thinking positive thoughts and birthing your baby - let DH fill out the forms and worry about VitK pricks.

7. You CAN have a positive hospital experience. They're not going to tie you down and drug you unwillingly. Just smile (yes, you can still smile during labour, lol) and say "No thanks, I dont want any intervention". You can do it - believe it!

Good luck - read that book. Its a great resource for natural hospital births.

Mel - Loving mama and wife to the A team
From little things, big things grow
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#36 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 11:37 AM
 
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If you want to go ahead with your hospital birth, i would keep in mind my mother's advice. She is a ob/nurse with tons of natural birth creds and educaiton. She always says the only way to have a natural birth in a hostpital and not get "messed with" as she calls it, is to STAY AWAY and STAY HOME until you are AT LEAST 7 cm. She says this is the hardest thing in the world for first-time moms to do, because you can't feel what phase of labor you're in, and you're a little nervous, etc.

She says if you're scared about staying away at all, go to the hospital and labor in your car in the parking lot!!!

Can you get a labor support person who could do vag. exams to check how far you've progressed? Have you taken a birthing class? Have your partner and yourself monitor your emotional stages--this can really help you tell more than a physical check can anyway. Like I knew once I a) wanted drugs b) vomited and c) felt "pushy" it was time to go to the birthing center for real because I was in transition. I got into my room and I was fully dilated, ready to push.

That is how you want to show up at the hospital. They will not have the time to do anything but deliver your beautiful, healthy baby!

If you do go in a little early and you're say, 2 or 3, or even 4 cm dilated. DO NOT let them admit you. Check yourself out and go home. Don't let them break your water or do anything else to make you stay in the hospital. If you go in at 2 or 3, they're gonna push the pit, push an epi, and put you on the 12-hour clock. Get outta there and go home to labor some more.

You'll have a great birth with the right support and by not submitting yourself for interventions before there's any chance you would even need them.
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#37 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 01:03 PM
 
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I wanted to add.. I was supposed to have a homebirth. We had Preterm labor issues then $ became an issue. I had already paid the 2500 on my deductible from insurance because of PTL and we were already in the care of the OB's I loved. I wanted the homebirth but was no longer comfortable with it. Our MW became our doula (LOVE her). and we had the most amazing hospital birth ever. No complications not one person ever argued my wishes.. lol our nurse was a bit cooky at times but MW and myself kept her at bay. She wasn't bad just quirky... she got smacked a few times lol and she got the hint (don't come at a woman in transition!)

Our birth was amazing.. DS is perfect we went home within 24 hours. (It was good we stayed because my bleeding got quite heavy).

The OB didn't do anything but suction out DS nose, and mouth. DH caught him. OB caught placenta and left. He stood leaning on the wall while I was pushing almost half asleep looking. Everyone was really hands off it was wonderful.

Homebirths are great for some but if your not comfortable or even $ is an issue then make the most of what you can do and do what you feel comfortable with and not what others think is best.

Mama to a zoo!
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#38 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone, you all are so great! I do like my OB and midwife (though she calls herself a med wife) lol But she is married to the OB so I guess it makes sense.. I have talked to them and it sounds like they will follow my wishes. I have not told them I am totally against an epidural but I would like to avoid it if I can.. And if I get to the hospital too late for an epi then that would work! lol I like the idea of going there and laboring in the car. I hadnt thought of that one. Hopefully they will let me be up off the bed.. What are the best positions to labor in, standing, squatting, etc? Well, thanks so much!

Jen
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#39 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 02:58 PM
 
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What are the best positions to labor in, standing, squatting, etc?
Practically speaking, anything that allows gravity to work. But you will probably find your body preferring certain positions depending on how the baby is positioned and what kind of labor your having.

My second labor, sitting on a birthing ball was so wonderful, and then I pushed on hands and knees. My third labor, the *only* way I could cope with ctx was bent at a 90 degree angle, either standing up bent over, or on my hands and knees.
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#40 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 03:37 PM
 
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*oops*
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#41 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 04:36 PM
 
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I had planned on pushing in a squat to deliver DS#1 , but he was coming SO fast that mw had me lay down on my side so she could help slow him down and I wouldn't tear and he wouldn't bruise.

DS#2 I started standing but didn't feel that my legs would hold me up, just felt really weak and jittery -transition any one?? - I probably could have done it had I known where I was. I ended up pushing him out semi laying.

i labored with both on hands and knees or standing up leaning over the bed, chair, or my DH. I could NOT sit or lay down with contx, I tried one sitting and thought I would DIE before it ended and I could get up.

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#42 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 04:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alegna View Post
It's not too late. Many midwives would still consider taking you.

I would never risk myself and my baby in a hospital due to money. It's just not worth it.



-Angela
yep! unless you've already had the baby, its never too late.

someone once asked "what is your pelvic floor worth"..that puts it all in perspective for me.
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#43 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 04:43 PM
 
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ive even read (in Pushed) that many nurses and doctors make fun of birth plans in a hospital...as in "who do they think they are coming in HERE and demanding to birth a certain way".
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#44 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 05:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Jen78fl View Post
Thanks everyone, you all are so great! I do like my OB and midwife (though she calls herself a med wife) lol But she is married to the OB so I guess it makes sense.. I have talked to them and it sounds like they will follow my wishes. I have not told them I am totally against an epidural but I would like to avoid it if I can.. And if I get to the hospital too late for an epi then that would work! lol I like the idea of going there and laboring in the car. I hadnt thought of that one. Hopefully they will let me be up off the bed.. What are the best positions to labor in, standing, squatting, etc? Well, thanks so much!

Jen
lots of great advise here already. What i have to say about this post though, you used the word "let". if you want to move, which most peoples bodies do not want to be in the bed, you move. YOU dont let them tell you that you cant. you are there to have a baby, not for someone to tell you what to do or not to do. If there is TRUE issues that are explained and you agree they are really happening, then there is the time to "let" them do things like IV's and closer monitoring.

If you already know your stuff, then you can have the birth you want. Constant monitoring has NOT been proven to result in better outcomes for mom or baby. If you keep yourself hydrated at home, as well as drinking in the hospital, there is no reason to be hooked to an IV. those are the only things that would limit or reduce your mobility.

Have you read "A thinking womans guide to a better birth"? its a good place to start.

One thing to really talk with your dr about are pushing and delivery positions. Let him know if you want to be able to push upright, or on all 4s, much more effective and comfortable than on your back where they want you to be.

as for the car thing. not a comfortable position for laboring at all, unless you have a van that you can take the seats out of the back and have room to move some. again, stay home as late as you can. dont rush out the door the first time you think you should.

Lisa~Was Aspiring Midwife~Now-AAMI Midwifery Student #2020~Mama to Zackery 3/29/96, Drake 9/22/01, and Selina 10/26/03...and here was the link to my new blog
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#45 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, great advice everyone!
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#46 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 08:54 PM
 
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Jen - I'm another military wife that will be having our birth (any day now!) at a MTF. Are you going to a MTF? Or is this a civilan hospital? If it is a MTF, I've been very happy with mine - I'm seeing a m/w, they are very supportive of natural childbirth and have the lowest c-section rate of all the area hospitals. They are also the only one that will do VBAC's. I am refusing Vit K, eye drops and Hep B - it's not out of the norm for this to happen at the MTF and they are used to it. They also encourage you to try a variety of positions.

I also wanted a homebirth, but at the cost of 5k we decided against it.

Have you thought about having a doula? She would be perfect to have with you to help you through labor - especially when it comes to reminding you & your DH what you want, help you with postions, etc.

Good luck!

Wife, mom to DS (4), DD (2) and baby heart 2.7.13

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#47 of 56 Old 06-21-2008, 10:07 PM
 
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My experience with birth: you get what you pay for.

I had a client who was military, her entire birth was free. She had an unmedicated vaginal birth, and it was a total freakshow (she's here on mdc and she'd totally agree with me). The doctors and nurses disrespected her at every turn. It was really awful. Baby had a nuchal cord, doc cut it on the perineum, then "the baby is floppy," mom was bleeding, it was a nightmare.

I paid 2K for my homebirth, and I would have paid a lot more. Peace of mind is worth something. I'd find a way to get the money, or work out a payment plan with a midwife.

However, if you must go to the hospital, ask specifically for a nurse who is supportive of non-medicated birth. There is usually at least one nurse who is supportive, and you want her.

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#48 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 12:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks... One good thing is that this is a very small hospital, and I have heard that everyone is really nice.. So hopefully it will be a pretty good experience..
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#49 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 07:36 AM
 
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Thanks... One good thing is that this is a very small hospital, and I have heard that everyone is really nice.. So hopefully it will be a pretty good experience..
They'll give you a tour, and you can ask questions to be prepared beforehand. It's worth the hour or so of your time, believe me!
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#50 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 12:52 PM
 
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... but there's alot of scare tactics and bullying that goes on for homebirths by some people, just like the hosp.

I would add to this that "natural" is not a synonym for "good."
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#51 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 01:34 PM
 
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I just noticed you said "hopefully they'll LET me out of bed." The first thing you have to do if you want a good birth experience is let go of that thinking. YOU have to be in charge. Go against hospital policy, go against your doc, do what feels right to you. I can tell you right now, being stuck in a bed during labor is NOT going to help you at all to go without pain meds. Its amazing how much of a difference moving around makes. Even with a condition like preeclampsia, you can be up and moving as long as you keep your BP down (I'm not saying you have this, I'm saying I did and I was STILL up and moving, no way a normal pregnancy should mean you have to stay in bed.)

I had a terrible experience with my first so I tried to make it better with my 2nd. Here's what I did: I didnt get into a gown. Ever. Being in a gown makes you the patient-you arnt sick, you're having a baby. You shouldnt need a gown. I wore a dress to make checks easier and ended up completely naked at the end anyway. I didnt stay in bed. I bounced on a birth ball, walked around a little, went in the tub (which was against hospital policy btw), ate and drank my entire labor (also against hospital policy, but my midwife was with me on that....I'd bring my own snacks if yours isnt), didnt get an IV until I needed one (In my case, I was there because of preeclampsia and was being induced, when other methods didnt work, I agreed to pit, which is EVIL EVIL STUFFF!!!!). I also told the nurses to shut up when they were counting as I was pushing and telling me I wasnt doing it right... I think I was about to smack one of them...who cares how I'm pushing, the baby was coming out

Another little piece of advice. If you water breaks and labor hasnt started, STAY HOME. If you head to the hospital, they will have you on pitocin before you know it and insist on a cesarean if you go 24 hours? I think. So stay home, do your normal routine, once labor really gets going go in and if they ask, say your water just broke before coming in. They'll still monitor you for signs of infection, but going without internal exams will GREATLY reduce the chances of getting one. Also, if you are having contractions, go in, and find out your not dilating, just go home. Dont stick around, because again, before you know it they'll be pushing pit.

I'm not trying to freak you out...I'm simply saying, you have to get to a point where you feel like you are the one in control. Otherwise, you will more likely than not be pushed into things you dont want and be one of those on here writing about your unhappy birth experience...and I'd hate to see that if it could be avoided!

Cari-mama to Eriq, Lile, Paikea, Kaidyn, and Mieke is here!! 2/9/10
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#52 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 02:21 PM
 
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I dont have time to read all the posts but i know where the OP is coming from. with my first i was a military wife too. I had a wonderful hospital birth, BECAUSE i stood up for what i wanted and didnt take any crap! You stay at home as long as possible, when you go in make your wants known and for the most part that baby will NEVER leave your side so there is no worries about them doing something to her that you havent concented to.

for me there was 30 minutes of monitoring and BECAUSE i had no epidural i could walk around, shower, sit on the toilet, sit on the ball, do whatever i wanted. its only when you want an epidural that you are confined to your bed. No one can make a laboring woman do something she doesnt want to. In every case where they said i needed to do something that i wasnt going to do i asked for an AMA form. Against Medical Advice. i sign a bunch of them. I went over due with all of mine and at my last birth they said that the NICU would have to be present because there was miconium present in the water when it broke. i was pushing my son out when i signed (most likely unledgible) an AMA form and told the NICU to get out. they immediately left the room and he flopped onto my chest, perfect and healthy without any need to cut the cord early and be checked out by anyone!

i know they dont present things like they are options but everything is up to you. I know it would be nice to stay at home and not deal with any of it. but its very empowering to "just say no" and its definately possible to have the birth you want in a hospital. Its taken me 3 hospital births to finally decide to stay at home and go the unassisted route.

Angela: Catholic Homeschooling Mom to Sierra(11/00), twins Addison & Kendall(3/03), Jack(4/06), Brielle (7/08), Levi (2/2011); due with#7 (9/13). Birthed every witch way.....hospital. C section. VbAC. Unassisted water birth (hypno/painless). Assisted waterbirth to an almost 10lber! (Not painless!)
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#53 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 02:35 PM
 
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I had an awesome, natural, "good", great birth at a hospital with midwives!! It can be done... happy birthing!!
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#54 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 03:03 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Stayathomemommy View Post
No one can make a laboring woman do something she doesnt want to. In every case where they said i needed to do something that i wasnt going to do i asked for an AMA form. Against Medical Advice.

i know they dont present things like they are options but everything is up to you. I know it would be nice to stay at home and not deal with any of it. but its very empowering to "just say no" and its definately possible to have the birth you want in a hospital. Its taken me 3 hospital births to finally decide to stay at home and go the unassisted route.
I'm glad things went well for you in the hospital...but I think you may have been the exception to the rule! I asked for AMA forms and got court orders instead. In many cases, as soon as you walk into a hospital, you loose all your rights. They are in a positions to do anything and everything they want to...no matter how much you object. I said "NO" they got a judge on the phone. They were able to either get a CO or bully me into things with threats of DCFS and court orders. Make sure you know your hospital and staff! Take the tour and feel them out. Interrogate them!

Victim of Birth Rape & Coerced ribboncesarean.gifUnnecesareanribboncesarean.gif What makes people think they can cut up someone else's genitals? nocirc.gif
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#55 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 04:45 PM
 
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#56 of 56 Old 06-22-2008, 05:10 PM
 
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i was pushing my son out when i signed (most likely unledgible) an AMA form and told the NICU to get out. they immediately left the room...
They were still in the room, I remember. They just sat in the corner, looking most uncomfortable, basically twiddling their thumbs and waiting for some crisis to occur

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