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#31 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 03:49 PM
 
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Oh yes, please be super polite ladies so this thread doesn't close! I am lurking and finding this so interesting!

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#32 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 03:52 PM
 
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Im not a UCer, but I often come here to read and listen to some of the most INSPIRATIONAL, EDUCATED, and SUPPORTIVE women I know of on this site and quite possibly IRL.

When a woman comes here for support or advice, I think we should all pause a moment and read what it is she is asking for. Positivity is important in birth. But reality is part of it as well. I think we all may see something different while looking at the same situation anyway.

There is nothing wrong with seeking medical advice and if you are educated properly you can make a good decision. UC is all about education and intuition, if I am not mistaken (amongst many other things). You can always sign out of a hospital AMA.

Again I am not a UCer so maybe my opinion is not really valid, but I just wanted to weigh in as someone who does not UC but has a lot of respect for those who do.
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#33 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 03:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AmieV View Post
This, and if I could quote your other post I would too. Honestly...if you are truly trusting your instincts, would you need to get online and ask for feedback? I don't ever post on these threads because I'm not a UC'er, but I would think just taking that step would be a sign that things have stepped out of the realm of normal. I have had 2 completely normal, easy and wonderful out of hospital births, and while I had midwives in attendance, I didn't need them to tell me things were "right". I guess I was lucky to have that background because in my third birth, where things weren't right and I needed the help of the hospital, again I knew that without being told. I did ask my midwife "What next?" But in my head I had been thinking we needed to go if things didn't change for about an hour. I don't think "trust your instincts" is as much of a cop out as I would have previous to that experience, because I don't have near the trust in birth that most of you UC'ing ladies have, nor do I feel like a particularly intuitive person yet I STILL knew it in my bones when something was wrong.
For me, this is my point. Hormones drive birth, yes, and there is a point where adrenaline kicks in and starts to get you thinking very clearly and stalling out your labour. If this is happening, then the next step for the individual in the moment is to act and to acknowledge.
I have fairly strong viewpoints on the need for universal maternity care, including the need for universal provision of care for VBAC, which I've spoken of before here on these boards. I don't think it's reasonable to assume that everyone who UCs is reading at a professional level, has english as a first language or access to the funding required to pay a HB midwife.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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#34 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 04:17 PM
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i agree that we are also responsible for what we say and what impact that may have on another person, but we are not responsible for that person's outcomes based on her own decisions--regardless of what we said about it.

in a situation where i feel compelled to speak (as a form of action), then i will do so. but, if the person does or doesn't act on what i say, i'm still not responsible for outcomes.

morally speaking, i can only speak my truth. but, that also doesn't mean that i am compelled by moral compunction to speak on everything, in every way, every time. and sometimes, if i simply agree with another, it's already posted so i dont' need it to.

such that, if someone said "i would go to the hospital in that situation!" i wouldn't reiterate. there's no need. it's said.
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#35 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 04:48 PM
 
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I believe that support is honoring the poster and her situation, but it isn't just telling her what you think she wants to hear. I think sharing information and experience, even if it seems to conflict with what the thread starting person wants to hear, is important. And I say this because I am a person that tends to want to do that to avoid conflict. Usually if someone is asking me, "What do you think I should do" which has happened at various times in my life, I end up pushing the question back..."what do you think you should do, and why?" (or sometimes I've said, 'why are you asking me, do what you want' but that's because it was a friend of mine who I knew was going to do what she wanted anyway, LOL)

If someone says, "Well should I do X?" I might end up saying, "here is what my information says about that, here are some possible courses of action, does any of this sound doable?" I'm not thinking specifically about childbirth with this, however, so that scenario might change things. I guess the bottom line is I will try and say something that acknowledges the mother's feelings, share something of which I think she might not be aware, and then leave it. It's always her decision to make, she has to be the one to act. But I think it's important not to exclude the others legs of the support system. We can't have a rule which says that support is only that which agrees with the ideal to that poster, whether it's a scheduled c-section or an unassisted homebirth.
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#36 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 05:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Viola View Post
I believe that support is honoring the poster and her situation, but it isn't just telling her what you think she wants to hear. I think sharing information and experience, even if it seems to conflict with what the thread starting person wants to hear, is important. And I say this because I am a person that tends to want to do that to avoid conflict. Usually if someone is asking me, "What do you think I should do" which has happened at various times in my life, I end up pushing the question back..."what do you think you should do, and why?" (or sometimes I've said, 'why are you asking me, do what you want' but that's because it was a friend of mine who I knew was going to do what she wanted anyway, LOL)

If someone says, "Well should I do X?" I might end up saying, "here is what my information says about that, here are some possible courses of action, does any of this sound doable?" I'm not thinking specifically about childbirth with this, however, so that scenario might change things. I guess the bottom line is I will try and say something that acknowledges the mother's feelings, share something of which I think she might not be aware, and then leave it. It's always her decision to make, she has to be the one to act. But I think it's important not to exclude the others legs of the support system. We can't have a rule which says that support is only that which agrees with the ideal to that poster, whether it's a scheduled c-section or an unassisted homebirth.

This is a great POV!
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#37 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 07:52 PM
 
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Though I am fairly 'new' to posting here, and have not participated in one of the forementioned threads, I have given this thought....
I think we, in our decision to UC, need to be very careful not to substitute the authority of a dr or midwife for the authority of Lay-people. more so online because they will likely have less info about your personal situation, and because there ARE wierdos out there posing as other people.
There was a woman in an expecting club i was a part of who posted a birth story about *her* premature baby, later claimed it was a stillbirth, and later it turned out the birthstory (and Pictures) were stolen off another woman's Blog... It was very wierd and sad and a good example of why to use caution...
Anyway, back to my original point: IMO choosing unassisted birth means you are the authority on your situation, and should not be asking "What should I do." If you need to get a 'second opinion' above your own, it should be from a professional. That said, I think asking "What would you do?" is totally appropriate, and anytime i answer someone, i'm careful to answer "this is what I would do. This is why." even if they seem to be wanting more specific direction. I also think, as readers we need to 'filter' the advice we get and understand that "this is what she would do" even if it goes unsaid.
I think when a variety of people answer "I would.." in any given thread, it gives the poster alot of food for thought without being a crutch in any way. If I see a post or talk to someone online who i feel is looking for a 'diagnosis' or want the answer to come from someone else, sometimes, i try to steer her in the direction of taking back responsibility, other times I avoid getting involved at all If I feel they aren't taking enough responsibility, and it makes me uncomfortable
I feel that everyone has a right to thier path in life, which includes making mistakes (even tragic ones) sometimes, which is why feel it's okay not to get involved if it just doesn't feel right to me.

Great thread by the way! I think this is a really important discussion

-Lia

Lia Joy Rundle CLD                             Self Directed Woman                                   Self Directed Childbirth
                                                           Womanhood is not a destination. It is an archaeological dig. 

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#38 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 08:07 PM
 
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Trusting your instincts could very well mean that a birthing mother would choose to go to the hospital...but the point would be HER instincts, not YOURS. She doesn't need you telling her to do anything in particular. Trusting your instincts doesn't always mean she will stay home, it means she will do what she feels is right for her baby & her own situation. It is the GIFT of UC.

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#39 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 10:21 PM
 
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I am an advocate for children's health and well-being so when I read about a situation that sounds dangerous to me I point it out and speak up. I know my opinion isn't always the popluar opinion but I like to offer it in these types of situations so the OP can maybe see things from another perspective. With that being said, if I see a thread asking for support and I have no support to offer and nothing sounds completely "off" to me I pass on by without posting.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#40 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 10:22 PM
 
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I think you can be supportive even when suggesting someone consider going to the hospital, it's when people start ordering/begging someone to go to the hospital or trying to scare someone that it crosses the line.

There's a huge difference, imo, between "It's ok to go to the hospital if you feel you need to." or even "If I were you, I'd probably go to the hospital." & "You have to go to the hospital or your baby is going to die!!!!". Just as there's a huge difference between "It's ok to stay at home if you feel things are ok." & "Stay away from the hospital!"
I really agree with these sentiments. In the end, hopefully, anyone who is coming her for advice in labor will take the advice as personal opinions and suggestions, and know that no one here is offering medical advice.

I posted on a different board when I was in labor with #2. It was a few hours in and I felt I was having a positioning issue. It was very early in the morning, I was rather bored and yet in pain, and I was looking for suggestions to help get the baby in a better position before calling the midwife (as the midwife had asked that I not call in the middle of the night unless it was urgent/active labor so she could get enough sleep to be rested for the actual birth). I read the suggestions, picked one that made me do a little "Ah HA!" and sure enough, it worked. I was fully self-reliant, but I was also seeking available resources.

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Originally Posted by flapjack View Post
Where a mother is not clearly demonstrating that she's taken full responsibility for educating herself on normal childbirth then I will be blunter and more prescriptive than I would otherwise.
I also agree with this sentiment. A woman who is having a UC can be handling the non-professionally-monitored labor/birth the way I was, or she can be seeking outside affirmation that her choice is the right one and that everything will be okay. No one can possibly give her that affirmation or promise her that she and her baby will be okay. If she is experiencing serious doubts, then I am less likely to cheerlead in terms of staying home and more likely to place my transfer in a positive light - i.e., I felt that it was time for something to have happened that wasn't happening, and decided it was time to go to the hospital, which for me was the right choice and I don't regret it.

I think this is a very tricky place to be (the UC forum) because women UC for different reasons. The best reason is because a woman knows that it is right for her and her baby. The worst reason is because she feels she has no choice, or has decided it's the least bad of several bad choices. One situation that falls into the latter category is high-risk birth. A woman who has had multiple cesareans or some other special risk and has risked-out of midwife-attended birth, normal birth in a hospital, or vaginal birth is in a very difficult place. Her UC is especially risky. We don't know how risky UC is; the numbers we have aren't scientific and they really don't help the case of UC because they don't reflect similar safety as planned, attended low-risk home or hospital birth. For some women, UC may be safer than attended birth. That is certainly not true for everyone, however - particularly women who have risks going into birth.

It is very different to say "Hey, got this issue here, any suggestions?" or "Wow, this is a long labor, could I get some encouragement?" than to be asking "Please help me decide what to do - I'm uncertain and unsure - is it supposed to be like this?" I really see the latter as an indicator that a transfer is probably appropriate. Anyone who is so in need of reassurance does not, to me, have the mental, emotional or spiritual space or mindframe that usually accompanies successful UC. That's not to say that anyone who experiences major doubts or a sense of loss of instinct during labor is a failure - just that when those things occur it is likely that a transfer would be a good idea. I experienced just such a "failure of instinct" during the birth of my first child and transfer was what I needed at that point, even though the birth was uncomplicated.

A UC/transfer is not a failed UC nor is it an unsuccessful birth. It doesn't say anything about the laboring mother or her baby, except that they were aware of their own needs and acted accordingly. In the same vein, we do not say that homebirth failed when a woman transfers and ultimately has a healthy baby - we say instead that it is an indication of the success and safety of homebirth because mothers and babies in need can be transferred safely for additional care (whatever that may entail). Transfers are not necessarily good experiences, but they can be necessary ones.

I agree that we have some measure of responsibility in what we say. I try to be thoughtful and encourage a mother to listen to herself, even if she doesn't like what she hears. And if she hears silence, she should not be listening to us instead.
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#41 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 11:01 PM
 
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Romana...you make sense to me, I felt your post was really good!

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#42 of 46 Old 03-02-2009, 11:33 PM
 
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Averysmomma - your post on page 2 was fantastic! I think everyone should read it again.

Lindsay: DS#1 (06/06) DD#1 (09/07) DS#2 (10/08) DD#2 (06/09). AND A BABY DUE NOVEMBER 2013

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#43 of 46 Old 03-03-2009, 12:48 AM
 
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You know...it's tough to know what to do sometimes.

A mama who was perfectly educated, confident and connected to her momma bear intution going into a UC can end up hitting that place where you sort of think "okay, can I do this?" and come here saying "I'm tired, it's been so long and I'm feeling like I can't do this, what if soemthings wrong??" - someone who maybe is feeling shaky with the UC process might say "If you feel like something is wrong call 911, it's time to get you in to the hospital" and that can feed the birthing mammas sense that she can't do it...where as the same birthing goddess mamma who comes and posts that plea for voices could instead read a post from a mama which reads: "You CAN do this, I know it feels like it's been such a long time, but you know when you get to feeeling that way that it means you are close, you are a birthing queen and you can do this" - and maybe that's what she needed to hear to help her get over that hump...you know?

I know that about a half hour from the end of my labor with Avery...I hit that place. I looked up into my husbands eyes and with every ounce of me I screamed with my eyes "I can't do this. I can't do this" and his eyes said lovingly back to me: "You are my queen, I love you and you are doing so great" and I was instantly catapulted back to that place of "I've got this, I'm so close...ooooopppppeeeeeennn!!!" - and like I said, half hour later, I was holding a baby.

It had been 31.5 hours since my water broke, I was tired, I was worn down....what if I had posted here and someone had said "Look, I had a friend who had a long labor (not that 31 hours is so long) and her baby died, so, maybe you should go to a hospital!" - what would that have done to my ability to be bounced back to that positive place? Right now, not in labor, I can tell you that I would kindly ignore that persons well meaning advice....but if I were in labor, if I were that tired and worn down...maybe it would chip away at whatever reserves of "I can do this" I had left, you know?

I think what it comes down to is that advice should be dealt more carefully than support. Support is that building back up, that reminder that "you've got this, your body know how to do this"....advice is "Okay, you think your baby is breech...here is some information on breech delivery. If you think you don't want to deliver breech alone, maybe you should call a MW or transfer, many women do it just fine though...you are a birthing goddess no matter what you choose!" - A person coming here for support, needs support....but someone looking for advice, is REALLY looking for information...so, if you don't have information, and you don't have anything supposrtive to say in lieu of informaiton...maybe you should just walk away.

This about it: Someone comes with that same scenario "I think my baby is breech" and you say "Oh my gosh, honey maybe you ahouls transfer, I knew someone whose baby died because she tried to deliver her breech alone" - that is such bullsh*t! Because it is just as poisonous as if you were to say "Oh, breech is easy, just do it!" - those are both ridiculous things to say. The thing that most UC mamas here would say is what I posted above: "Okay, you think your baby is breech...here is some information on breech delivery. If you think you don't want to deliver breech alone, maybe you should call a MW or transfer, many women do it just fine though...you are a birthing goddess no matter what you choose!" See?

So, one can be as smug as she wants in saying "well, I'm just giving realistic advice because I don't want a little baby's blood on my hands" - but that is not fair. Because that mama who decided to UC, knewthat there are variations of normal if she did ANY research before her birth and she doesn't need to hear your stupid story about how babies die all the time being born breech or whatever other nonsense...I think if someone finds themselves posting something that sounds negative for the fact that they want to "cover their behind" by throwing out that worst case scenario...they should just not post.

I agree that supportive encouragement should be given wisely....but I also think that nine times our of ten, the UCer who is coming on here for informatio or support, is NOT going to be basing 100% of her decisions on the opinon of people on the forum...because that just flies completely in the face of everything that UC means. I don't know tat this is something a non-UCaccepting mamma can fully grasp and maybe she should think about that before she posts advice here to a woman in labor. If you aren't comfortable with UC, you're not going to be able to give very constructive advice to a UC mamma because YOU would be more confortable were she in a hospital or with a MW. Soo, I'm not trying to say "Uc only club" - but it's not fair for you to come and pee on someones parade who CAN DO IT, who is just coming to be reminded that she is in the company (if only in spirit) of other mammas who have been there and who are rooting for her.

When I UC my next baby.....if I come to a place where I need information, I will call my midwife for advice....and I will post here for support and information. If, when I UC, I have a long tedious labor and come ehre worn down and needing that boost from you mammas and someone sticks their head onto my head to "remind me" that "babies can die when being born at home and that if I'm tired maybe I should transfer...." I can't promise that in my volitile state I won't chew your head off for being a discouraging busy body in "well meaning" clothing.

PS: When I say "you" I am not talking about anyone here AT ALL! I'm just meaning the "general you"....I think this conversation is important, because I think that mammas who are not comofrtable with UC need to respect that some women are, and some women are een comfortable with UC NO MATTER WHAT...and that is their choice and it should be respected. I'm not saying tell a mama what you think she wants to hear, but there is an extreme and very important difference between giving you realiztic, constructive and supportive advice BASED UPON your desire to UC...and someone harassing you because secretly they think that your UCing is dangerous and stupid. Please, if a lady wants that kind of harassment, she'll just transfer already!!

:::

Nothing but love for all my mamas!!
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#44 of 46 Old 03-03-2009, 10:34 AM
 
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as a poster in a couple of different webgroups for UC (as a UC mama and supporter), I have seen this issue come up again and again. And here is my experience with laboring UC moms who come online for support--there seem to be 2 types of threads that generate:

1. UC mama posts to joyfully state that she is in labor, and as for our prayers/positive thoughts. May at some point ask for 'minor advice'--comfort measures, for instance, or 'remind me about how I can best protect myself/baby with water broken past 24hrs'. Most respondents basically just say "you go mama" or may provide that minor advice asked for. These threads are generally 2pages or less, including her announcement of birth (unless she starts a new, birth announcement thread).

2. UC mama posts to say she's in labor, may start by only asking for p/pt from us but at some point she encounters difficulties of a sort that prompt her to seek more advice. In almost every case I've ever seen (if not all), this starts with lo-o-o-o-ong labor or at least a long time from water breaking. These threads are most always 3 or more pages long, and as time goes on the tenor gets worse--and by 'worse' I mean that more and more people start giving more and more 'agressive' advice. By 'agressive' I mean mainly more insistent, more repetitive (whether it's 'trust yourself' or 'go to hospital NOW' type of advice). In addition, the respondents so often start to bicker with each other about the mama's best course of action (essentially bickering, even if tones are civil).

The first type of thread I find so sweet and inspiring; whether or not I post, I breathe p/pt toward the mama and smile. The second type I just hate! To me, the development of such threads is totally antithetical to the spirit of UC--and even to the safety of UC.

The more we say to a UC mama, NO MATTER WHAT WE SAY, the more we are encouraging her attention to move outward from her own experience, her own gut/intuition, and toward 'external direction'. Sure, she can ignore us....or those of us she doesn't like hearing from....but as we know, pregnant and especially laboring women are so very sensitive and vulnerable to input. IMO, one of the major strengths of UC--making it safest for mom and baby--lies in the fact that the mama/her partner are in charge, are doing it and deciding it all for themselves. Are forced to rely upon their OWN internal resources, their knowledge, the limits of their own endurance and trust.

Anyway, JMO. To me, the #2 type of support thread is well, just wrong on so many levels. The more a mama looks for advice adn support, the more we should be saying--this is on you mama--you need to turn inward and make your own choices.
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#45 of 46 Old 03-03-2009, 12:35 PM
 
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The more we say to a UC mama, NO MATTER WHAT WE SAY, the more we are encouraging her attention to move outward from her own experience, her own gut/intuition, and toward 'external direction'. Sure, she can ignore us....or those of us she doesn't like hearing from....but as we know, pregnant and especially laboring women are so very sensitive and vulnerable to input. IMO, one of the major strengths of UC--making it safest for mom and baby--lies in the fact that the mama/her partner are in charge, are doing it and deciding it all for themselves. Are forced to rely upon their OWN internal resources, their knowledge, the limits of their own endurance and trust.


This is exactly what I was trying to say. Wise woman Ms Black.

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#46 of 46 Old 03-03-2009, 04:21 PM
 
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you are too sweet!

thanks
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