Catching my own baby - Mothering Forums
View Poll Results: Did you catch your own baby?
I had no desire to, so I didn't. 5 17.24%
I really wanted to, but I didn't in the moment. 6 20.69%
Catching my own baby just happened. 6 20.69%
I was able to catch my baby just like I planned. 12 41.38%
Voters: 29. You may not vote on this poll

Unassisted Childbirth > Catching my own baby
Dandy Lion's Avatar Dandy Lion 06:20 PM 01-01-2014

I'm not planning an unassisted birth, but I think you guys have such great information and experience, that I figured I'd ask here. I hope that's okay.


I'm planning on doing a home birth with a midwife. This is my second home birth with her, and she's super hands-off. I feel really comfortable with the labor and birth part of things, but because neither of my babies took to breathing easily, I feel more comfortable with someone else there to handle that. I really want to catch my own baby this time. Last time I pushed on my hands and knees and I didn't even think about it. I tore a bit as well, so I want to do more to support my perineum. 


While searching through past threads, I've read all sorts of great information about moms either catching and loving it, or moms just not being able to catch in the moment. They were all from a while back though, so I thought a little poll might be informative. Feel free to share your own experiences, tips, and also things I can discuss with my midwife about it.



sgnorton123's Avatar sgnorton123 08:36 PM 01-01-2014
None of the poll questions suit my answer :-) hubby and I had discussed it beforehand and I
Think hubby really wanted to catch the baby. This was our first homebirth and first son and I wanted to give him that. Having said that, in the moment I couldn't have caught the baby myself. My labor was so intense and I was on hands and knees and at that time couldn't even fathom trying to reposition. I would like to catch my baby as well though. Maybe next time... :-)
BennyPai's Avatar BennyPai 09:09 AM 01-02-2014

I answered as closely as I could.  I had a desire to catch my babies, but it hasn't happened yet for various reasons. 


Various Reasons:  DD3 came out with such force that she shot across the pool, DD2 needed her cord unwrapped and I was dealing with another complication during pushing (TMI I'm sure & irrelevant besides), DD1 I was exhausted with carpal tunnel symptoms in my wrists and forearms, semi reclined with DP behind me holding my legs, DD4 cord wrapped twice tightly and MWs were attempting to maneuver/clamp/etc. when baby came out fast again.  In retrospect, I'm not sure whether I scooped her up up out of the pool or not ...

I plan to give it another try this summer. 

BennyPai's Avatar BennyPai 09:10 AM 01-02-2014

@sgnorton123 :  My DP has also expressed interest in baby catching.  I wouldn't be opposed to it. It's special, and I definitely prefer DP to a non-family member catching.

Voondrop's Avatar Voondrop 06:06 AM 01-03-2014

Husband caught our UC & though she was my 4th, I just didn't feel as if I could move from semi- reclined. I always fee cemented in place during the pushing phase. I did ask for a mirror, she was the first baby I ever saw coming out, so that was new.

nilatti's Avatar nilatti 12:06 PM 01-03-2014

DH caught both of ours and says they were among the most meaningful experiences of his life. I wanted to catch #2, but couldn't do it in the moment.

phathui5's Avatar phathui5 02:54 AM 02-06-2014

Hm, my bed caught the baby. I was too overwhelmed with the actual baby coming out part to do it. Dh asked what he could do and says I told him not to touch me (oops).

defineGrace's Avatar defineGrace 10:47 AM 02-08-2014

I caught one of my babies, DH wants to catch this one. I caught rather by accident. My midwife was out of the room because i had just been checked at 7, 15 minutes later in the shower his head was in my hand and it was pure instinct. I think a shocking reality swept me when I felt him crowning and I stopped feeling everything else and just focused on the fact my baby was coming out of me. LOL. Midwives don't love this out of room, not ready, no gloves on, kind of catch (as far as I know). lol. either way, my first two I ripped away my hand when my mw tried to have me feel the baby. I was scared of the ring of fire and wanted to disconnect (upon reflection) I wasn't given the luxury the 3rd time, the only time I gave birth with my eyes open now that i think about it :thumb

JamieCatheryn's Avatar JamieCatheryn 11:55 AM 02-13-2014

My husband caught babies 1 and 2 and my mw caught number 3. My positions that worked for me just didn't allow for me to catch.

applejuice's Avatar applejuice 06:27 PM 02-13-2014

I caught #2. I grabbed him and he was looking at me and gave me a wink!


The event was healing. He had laid on a spot in my back which was extremely painful and could only go away with his birth.

weliveintheforest's Avatar weliveintheforest 03:49 PM 02-14-2014

DH caught #2, and I caught #3. I have no plans for next time, if I'm in a position where I can catch I will, or if not, he will.

crunchymonkey's Avatar crunchymonkey 07:42 AM 02-16-2014

Lurking, I really wanted my husband to catch our baby, he only wanted to do it to make me happy I think now looking back. When the moment came down to it  my daughter came out much faster than I expected and I instinctually reached down and caught her to keep her from hitting her head on the tub. I was on all fours and did some graceful movement to a sitting position.  I think usually once the head is out, the shoulders take a few pushes themselves but my daughter came out in the same push that got her head out so i didn't think anyone was prepared to catch her!

defineGrace's Avatar defineGrace 05:40 AM 02-19-2014

That Fetal Ejection Reflex is no joke! Sometimes they don't need the extra shoulder pushes.superhero.gifthey fly right out

zuleicamoon's Avatar zuleicamoon 06:08 PM 02-19-2014
I answered the poll with regards to my most recent birth (uc)...i caught him, but I hadnt planned to/didnt care who did it and dh was right there immediately helping me untabgle him from the cord. Births 1-4 the midwife caught directy or was the first to scoop baby up out of the water; all four times the baby was then passed to me within sconds. Dh says that i have always reached down like I would do it myself but the midwives just grabbed faster I guess...I have very little conscious memory of my attended births so I dont know. I never expressed a desire to catch those babies myself; if I had I'm rather certain the midwives would have been hands-off.
rachie's Avatar rachie 10:21 PM 02-20-2014

My first baby was caught (in hospital) by a "med-wife" who stood back a foot and literally "caught" him.  


Second baby was caught by my hubby and midwife.


Third caught by my husband - I was on my knees and she went behind me and was a little tangled in my legs so my husband had to sort of "unwind" her and then brought her out of the water. 


Fourth - I was again on my knees but then, after her head was already out, the midwife made me change position so I was SO uncomfortably sort of up-right side-laying with one leg more "up" - that was, I guess, so that the baby would not need to be de-tangled but let me tell you if I knew that was why they were yelling and making me move I would not have and I was ticked afterwards.  With this birth I also felt a heck of a lot more pressure going upwards against my pubic bone so that I was almost afraid to have her come out in front of me and I almost wanted her to come out behind me (go down, not up) because I did not want to tear up-ways.  I'd love to get clarity on birthing positions so that I will know what I want to do this next time around.  I would really like to catch this next time if I have enough energy and am not overwhelmed by pushing or by people telling me what to do and if I am not afraid of tearing upwards.  

Peony's Avatar Peony 08:22 AM 02-21-2014

I have always caught my own babies, 4 of them. DH never wanted anything to do with catching them and honestly, I preferred to do it myself because it was just easier, I could support where I needed to. 

BlessedOne's Avatar BlessedOne 12:34 PM 06-05-2014
mine were water births so sometimes it wasn't as much catching as it was picking the baby up out of the water. my hubby is not the type to catch which is fine because I prefer to....I did the work.... holding baby first is my reward
Dandy Lion's Avatar Dandy Lion 04:18 PM 08-02-2014
In the end, my midwife caught my daughter. She encouraged me to get into a favorable position, but in the end I just wanted to be on my hands and knees. I wouldn't change a thing though!
boater's Avatar boater 05:53 AM 08-12-2014
Just wrote a long post but lost it when my phone died.
Anyway, I loved catching my first baby in the birth tub. It was extremely empowering and gratifying to feel the baby's progress with my own fingers (touching her head for the first time while she was still inside felt miraculous) . Then supporting my own perineum as she emerged and bringing her up to my chest by myself was so important to me and one of the most significant experiences of my life.
I am due with my second baby in about 5 weeks and I'm not planning on renting a tub this time so I'm not sure how it's going to go. It would be great to catch again or have Dh and 3yo Dd do it together depending on the circumstances. A friend of mine birthed in a tub recently an her 3yo and Dh caught the baby and I just thought it was so sweet and touching but I'm not sure how that will work on land. My Dd really wants to catch though!