Painless birth turned painful? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 08-07-2013, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Has anyone prepared for birth only for things to happen otherwise? (Ok, this is hard for me to actually write down what I'm thinking in my head- my question doesn't sound so good for this forum even:))


What I mean is reading birth stories (or something else) where they write about surges, rushes of energy or the natural forces, surrendering my body to nature, intense feelings or for example taking mind off of matter.

Or then using mantras, before and during labour and birth.

Or talking of fears and building trust in your body, getting ready mentally.

(perhaps practicing hypnobabies/hynpobirthing for the upcoming birth-relaxing)


More precisely, or perhaps another question altogether, has anyone prepared for the ''pain'' during birth, or even how to cope with it or prevent it? I guess I really don't know how to get my point across....hopefully someone will understand!


Or does so-called pain in childbirth have more to do with what kind of shape you are in physically? Which is affected by what you eat....

Or is it all mental, like only up there, intensities what you perceive to be pain (because of this world brainwashing people into childbirth=pain)


I'm stuck on my last birth. It was pretty much a UC. But I can't seem to understand why it hurt SO much. My first 3 births were in the hospital, though the 2nd and 3rd I was there only for the pushing stage. The 2nd probably hurt too, but the 3rd much more. More so than the 2nd, because it stayed in my mind for a long time. And now this 4th, which happened all alone with noone telling me what to do, hurt even more. Before I even started pushing. What I'm thinking is that I was giving little tiny grunts already a couple hours before baby was born. But nothing happened. And then my lower belly just hurt so much during all the squeezes I couldnt take it anymore. Why so? I never felt this with any of my other births. Could it just be that I was so nervous doing a UC for the first time? Or scared, like can I do this on my own for real? I did not want to go to the hospital, and didnt feel any need to go either. (we ended up driving there, but baby came in the car-from fear of going to the hospital?)


Just trying to sort my thoughts and feelings a bit. I really like(d) how this last birth went, even though it did hurt. I just cant seem to find any good reasons for it.

Thanks for listening anyways:)

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#2 of 8 Old 08-07-2013, 02:46 PM
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I think every birth is different: baby is different, the uterus is different, baby may be in a different position or turning differently. Your bladder/stomach/bowels may be more or less empty, you may be more or less tired, etc. I know I'm not being very helpful but my 2 births felt completely different. The one I felt more prepared/comfortable for hurt more: bigger baby in a posterior position. Ok so that's also I got. I hope other mamas have more insight for you
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#3 of 8 Old 08-07-2013, 03:17 PM
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I've heard that as you have more babies your muscles get weaker and looser. So while it often takes less time because there is less holding your baby in, it hurts more because the muscles are weak. I don't think that psychology changes birth pain that much. I suppose the pain is worse if you are afraid or waiting on an epidural, but I really reject the idea that labor pains are just our perception. In fact I find it completely demeaning and sexist that people suggest such nonsense. Birth hurts because your uterus is contraction over and over again. Try doing 1,500 deep squats in a row. Your butt and thighs would be killing you! It also hurts to stretch your skin, period. I do think there are things a woman can do to naturally lessen the pain of labor such as meditation, hypnosis, relaxing between contractions etc. I also think that being hydrated, well rested and taking magnesium and calcium can help. But yeah , it's gonna hurt no matter what unless the woman happens to be EXTREMELY lucky!
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#4 of 8 Old 08-07-2013, 03:30 PM
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It could have been a number of things (back labor?).  I am currently pregnant with baby # 4 and reading Ina May's Guide to Childbirth as I am trying to make sense of my third birth (also more painful than the first two), as well as plans for this upcoming birth.  She talks a lot about mind-body connection so based on what I have read in this book, I would say if you were not 100% comfortable with having an unassisted birth, that may have been the reason. Of course I believe all births hurt (again, disputed in Ina May's book) but anxiety can slow down or even stop the process.

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#5 of 8 Old 08-07-2013, 04:06 PM
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Giving birth hurts- a whole f'ing lot!  

Once in a great while it does not, but for the vast majority of women it does- and it is a normal and evolved condition for birth to hurt.  This gets us to a safe space where we won't be predated upon.  And it puts our physiology in an altered state to bond intensely with our baby.    

Each birth will feel different depending on your body and your baby and how they are in position to one another. And the perception of that pain will be greater or less depending on how safe you feel.  This is why I feel it is kind of cruel to set women up for the possibility of birth not hurting.  They start to think something is wrong with them or the labor when experiencing normal *crazy* painful sensations, which can give the whole thing negativity.  

We can experience the pain, and we don't have to protect anyone from that experience.  It is our own rite of passage that keeps us safe, bonds us to our babies and gives us incredible confidence as mothers.  

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#6 of 8 Old 08-08-2013, 09:51 AM
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For my first baby, I prepared for a long labor. I tried to ignore all the "negative" stuff about how painful birth is, and focused on "pressure" and "birth waves" The result:  Labor was 4 hrs from start to finish. I pushed for 20 minutes. Contraction were intense, painful, and totally doable!  Crowning hurt so much more than I ever thought was possible.


For my second baby, I prepared for a fast birth (I was thinking about 2 hrs) and concentrated on visuallzing a pain-free crowning. The result: Labor was 7 hours, start to finish, I pushed for 4 hours. Contractions were  intense, painful, and totally doable, until after each contraction came these nasty PMS after-contractions that HURT SO MUCH! And crowning felt like intense pressure that was a little painful. 


So, YES! I have prepared for a birth only to have it happen otherwise! Both good and bad! Just go with it! Prepare as best you can, but during birth, remember your body knows how to get this baby out of you! Each baby is different, each body is different. It doesn't matter: your body knows what to do! Just relax and go with the flow!

Happy mama to two homebirth.jpgwaterbirth.jpg DD's
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#7 of 8 Old 08-08-2013, 11:29 AM
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My take on it is that you can't make the pain go away, but you can learn techniques to cope with the pain that you do have.  Whether that's changing positions, or having a mantra, or swearing like a sailor, it is highly dependent on the person and the situation.  Honestly, some people just have larger pain tolerances than others, we're all wired differently and we respond to stimuli in unique ways.  Birth is painful because we've evolved to have large heads, it's just the way it is.



WOHM to Leo (4/08) reading.gif and enjoying the journey with DH geek.gif

Announcing the arrival of Clara in August 2013! homebirth.jpg

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#8 of 8 Old 08-11-2013, 12:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks! I agree. I read a lot more this time around and was (and still am!) much more trusting in the birthing process, that my body will do what its meant to do without my input:) and that usually everything goes just fine. The thing I missed doing this time was reading Ina May's book again, mostly gathering ways on how to relax or go with the flow. Tho I have to say I didnt do too badwink1.gif My bowels emptied, I drank water, and I used my lioness voice, but I was SO tired. I tried to rest and sleep between contractions, but that's part of the reason why it hurt, tho I was fully awake when it really started to hurt, near the end. And forget about those regular contractions. Mine went haywire! Could that also be from lack of sleep?  My husband and I are really happy the way it all happened tho, and I feel thats the most important. He wanted me to give birth in the car(in the hospital parking lot LOL) and I wanted to stay home and then go to the hospital(health reasons). We both didnt want to do how the other wanted. But then when birth was close I wanted something to take the edge off because it was getting to be too much for me. And then she came in the car.....I dont think I have ever seen my husbands face and eyes glow so much as they did when we left the hospital and he told me her birth was an ''awesome'' birth. So, kind of like forget about the pain!, but it was so different from the previous 2 births. I didnt get any painkillers and wanted everything natural. And I was able to cope just fine with them. This time was so much different, but it could have been her position. Her nose was a bit ''crushed'' looking for the first couple days after birth, maybe her head was in the birth canal a little differently? My back was hurting throughout labour too. Not just during the contractions, but during the long spaces between them too! It was a weird pain and  couldnt make it stop in any way!


The pain I have felt during birth is somehow a good pain. It hurts, but it doesnt feel bad. Its something I am able to work with, cope with. My body makes its own painkillers. I could tell precisley(sp) when contractions intensified but after a couple it didnt feel so bad, and then they went up to the next level, andsoforth.

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