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#1 of 14 Old 02-23-2009, 09:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm scared to write this, as if saying it on here some how makes it more concrete than it already is, but I need to talk about it with people who get it. I need to complain, shed tears, and ask questions about what to do next.....

My daughter is six weeks old, and her birth was a failed vbac. This was my second homebirth transfer. I believe I was punished by the hospital for my attempt and transfer to there. I am a child birth educator and a doula. Why does this keep happening to me.

My first son was born after 43 weeks by csection. I guess it just made my midwifes too nervous and we didn't know I would start developing pre-e, so we were doing nothing to stop it. So, second time I know much more and when my liver starts acting up early on it's diet changes for me. The diet gets ride of all my symptoms, and on I go. I round the corner of 42 weeks and I start getting nervous that I'll never go into labor again. The day before 43 I get some acupuncture and like magic that night I'm in labor. I was completely convinced that this meant success and was overjoyed to be experiencing labor pain.

The labor goes well and I labor 12 hours, but then my labor started dying out. We take a labor break, all the while I'm still having contractions just not long strong close ones, for a while. When they do work back up, my midwife comes back and we labor 12 more. Then I start to get exhausted (about 29 hours in with no sleep.) I drink some wine and take a three hour nap, to wake up and find out my labor has slowed considerably again. After 31 hours (the last 12 spent at 8cm,) my labor slowing twice, and now my babies heart rate taking a little dip to 110, my midwife is insistent I transfer to our vbac banned hospital in town. I drag myself in sobbing uncontrollably. Here's where it starts to get bad.

I spend 5 hours waiting for them to section me all the while fighting the nursing staff. The charge nurse insists on telling me over and over, or having my nurse tell me over and over that Vit K is required by law. I sign a wavier anyway. She bursts into my room during a contraction and starts to tell me that the on call ped recommends I get it. I tell her I understand but still refuse. She stomps off saying she will go get the ped to talk to me. I tell her that is fine.

Later I request to have two people in the room during my surgery. I peek out of the door while my nurse is asking her, and hear her telling my nurse in a raised and angry voice that she will not allow this for any reason, and goes on and on about why.

When they pull my baby girl out of me they discover mec.... just my freaking LUCK! So they suction her repeatedly in the O.R. Then they take her to the nursery where they decide that she aspirated it based on mec in her mouth and higher than normal breaths per minute (in the 60-80 range.) They put her on 100 percent oxygen, start antibiotics, and bully my DH into the Vit K.

Of course I am unable to see her for hours except for the minute or so she spent in my Dh's arms next to my head in the O.R. While in recovery I'm told she has pneumonia and will possibly have to be air lifted to a NICU. I ask for them to at least slow down as the wheel my bed past where she is in the nursery on the way to my room, and even though I'm told they will stop for a minute there, they don't. I'm taken to my room where my requests to get up and see her are ignored and put off for 5 hours. Finally I'm taken to her and allowed to hold her for the first time.

I'm not allowed to breast feed her due to possible aspiration of my milk, at first they say this will only last for 24 hours, it ends up lasting 3 days. When I do get to see her I'm asked to go back to my room after only holding her for a short time so they can do my vitals. I agree. Then I go back to hold her, just to be told two short hours later they need me to rest. I'm not sure why I agree, but I do. I sleep all night away from my baby, I cry myself to sleep naturally. The next morning even though she isn't worse they insist her x-rays are worse and have her air lifted. I can't go with her because I'm a liability after just having surgery.

When I arrive at the hospital where she is transferred two hours away, I ask to see the doc right away. I tell him I must breastfeed her, he says I cannot. I tell him I'm going to have to talk to hospital administration about his refusal. Then things get really bad for us. He notes that me doing that would be going "over his head" and that he will simply "go over my head by calling CPS" and some kind of crap about hospital security dragging me out. I back down. He then tells me he doesn't want me holding her as he knows I just intend to nurse her behind his almighty back. Totally defeated I try to pump, get nothing, and then get asked by a nurse to please come hold my daughter.

By this time I'm in shock. I feel nothing. I hold her but can't ever look at her sweet little face. I'm numb and dead inside and just sit there quietly with tears rolling down my face. My husband puts me in a wheel chair and rolls me out of the hospital and to a hotel room. At the hotel I beg my mother to take me home to my 2 year old and my husband sobs across the room unable to stand what I'm saying. I cry all night and maybe sleep for an hour. The next day or so at the hospital go similarly. Finally they let me nurse her after no change in her x-rays or anything else after three days. They say her overall health looks great and just stop taking the x-rays.

Her doctor says even though she is off of everything and she's "recovered" that he is keeping her there for 7 full days of antibiotics. After several days of staying at a hotel and then at a Ronald McDonald room connected to the hospital and nursing her per doctors orders every three hours I start swelling uncontrollably. I visit the E.R. and have another major break down. I beg the nurse manager to plead on my behalf to my doctor to move my daughter some where I can room in with her. The next day she is moved to the peds floor. He insists that she stay on monitors here which the nurses tell me is absurd because if a child needs monitors they can't be on this floor at all. The next two days are almost blissful since I get to room in except for having to see her rude doctor everyday, the monitor machine beeping all night one night on account of a broken cable, and a really rude nurses aid I have to tell not to come back to my room. So, finally I'm allowed to take her home after 8 full days on the antibiotics at this hospital, one full day at the one before. Her doc decides who I will be seeing as a doctor when I arrive home and makes the appointment for me before I leave the hospital. Oh by the way she never had an infection all the cultures came back negative every day from the first day.

When I do arrive home I her medical records from the first hospital note "nothing abnormal" from her x-rays. No mec, no pneumonia.

My midwife suspects Transient Tacipnea and I agree.

Sorry it's so long, it's really hard to condense, and that isn't even close to everything. I'm now suffering, I think I have PTSD. I'm not sure what to do. I guess I need to find help but I'm scared. I don't trust the medical community. I'll be talking to my midwife about my depression/anxiety on Wednesday, but honestly I'm embarrassed. I just want to be a normal happy mother. I want to take excellent care of my two beautiful children. I want to enjoy my life.

This sounds so strange but what I want most of all is to take back her birth. I feel like it's been stolen from me. I hate that I'm in this state, most of what happened was completely unnecessary. It sucks that I failed at vbac, but most of all it sucks that I missed out on a peaceful beginning.

Sav

I think I should file complaints at both hospitals. Do you ladies think I have a leg to stand on, or that they will even do anything about it?
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#2 of 14 Old 02-23-2009, 04:52 PM
 
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I am so, so sorry. I agree from what you wrote that it sounds like they were punishing you, although sometimes it's hard to know what's just overzealousness and what's perhaps more malevolent.

I do think you should file complaints. The important things to remember are (1) figure out who to complain to; and (2) do not get emotional during the complaint - focus on the specific actions of the HCPs and why it was inappropriate. I think if you search in these forums you'll find more and better specific advice on how to do that. If we don't already, we should have a sticky about how best to go about it. You could also post your draft complaint letter here or in Birth & Beyond in order to get constructive thoughts on it before sending.

I think that you definitely need help to get through the emotional aftermath of the horrible ordeal that you went through. I would try hypnotherapy - particularly someone who specializes in birth trauma. I would also try to find out if there is a psychologist/therapist you could see who specifically has experience with women who have suffered from birth trauma. I don't know how easy that is to find. Someone who is experienced with PPD may be nearly as helpful, too. I understand what you're saying about having difficulty trusting the medical profession - perhaps there is a doula who could recommend someone or perhaps your midwife can.

Much love to you and your daughter as you heal and recover. Just writing it out is a huge initial step in that process.
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#3 of 14 Old 02-24-2009, 08:12 AM
 
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Oh Mama! I thought of you the other day, and wondered how your birth went since I figured you must have birthed by now. Just sending lots of hugs and love. Hang in there, love on your baby and on yourself....you will find the help you need.
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#4 of 14 Old 02-24-2009, 08:26 AM
 
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I'm so sorry that you and your daughter had to go through that ordeal. It does sound like you were being punished. I think punishing homebirth transfers is actually quite common - I and my DD were victims of that mindset too. I know how bad it feels not to have been able to give your baby the best possible start in life with a gentle peaceful birth. But please don't punish yourself for it. It really sounds like you did absolutely everything you could possibly have done, and the rest was simply out of your hands. If you think you have PTSD, you probably do. It's not an easy thing to live with, and if you can I would really suggest trying to find someone to talk to about it. A therapist experienced with birth trauma would be ideal. Look after yourself and don't be afraid to ask for help from the people around you.

(Oh, yes, I would file complaints with both hospitals; but be prepared for nothing to happen. Unfortunately doctors are rarely if ever called to task for interfering too much)

Lisa - mama to Eleanor Rose 01/08 and Saoirse Lily 09/10
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#5 of 14 Old 02-24-2009, 06:21 PM
 
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I just want to say please get some therapy. You have no reason to be embarrassed. You and your daughter and your husband did not deserve to be bullied and ignored by those who were supposed to be providing care for you. That is not your fault. You do not give up all rights when you enter a hospital!

Get your hospital records NOW. Do you have any documentation of the bullying? I don't really know anything else.

Mama to 2 year old and :: June 14th!
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#6 of 14 Old 02-25-2009, 12:48 PM
 
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You did not fail anything, my dear sweet woman. You did not fail at anything...I'm crying and just, so so beside myself at how cruel these people were to you and your baby.

I think that this was somewhere between hospitals sucking and "pay back" for your trying to VBAC. It sounds to me like they would have been more reasonable and kind to you had you not transferred in from a VBAC and had you nothad very specific wishes about how things were handled (why does the medical community seem to get so upset when a momma has a brain that she uses to decide what she would like her treatment plan to look like?).

I can't tell you how my heart cries for you, I'm so sorry this happened. I think you should take the steps necessary to report the people involved. Yes, in certain situations you are always going to have doctors telling you that "Oh my god, this is an emergency and blah bla blah...we HAVE to do this and we HAVE to do that"...but it sounds to me like you got an extra dose of "We'll teach her" from these people. The only thing I can think, is that it was the blidness of the doctors and nurses involved to the true nature and beauty of birth and the newness and delicacy of the baby's first few days which allowed them to treat you that way. For some reason, alien and disgusting to me and I'm sure all of us here, these people don't "get" it...they really took a situation that would have been sad for you and did their best to make it absolutely horrendous.

I think that you should try to have these people disciplined....not so much for the "got you back" factor, but a) for your own healing (these people DI perpetrate a spiritual crime against you, just because htey didn't realize how truly awful their actions REALLY were, doesn't mean that they weren't that bad) and b) because maybe, just maybe it will make them think twice before they do it to another momma. I would also HIGHLY recommend that you write an honest and letter to these people, certainly the doctor. Try to outline for them what you were aiming for with you birth and try to outline for them what they gave you, what they did for you. Something very honest, I think, is in order. Your story, your grief, is so deep and so heartfelt. I cannot imagine that it would not touch them at all, that it wouldn't shed any light on this for them...and if it doesn't, well then, there is no help for them.

I'm so, so so sorry for what happened to you and YES, it did happen TO YOU. You did what you thought you had to do....we don't get any gaurentees in this life, no amount of preperation or planning can make things turn out the way they shold. Being a good and honest person with the truest of love and intentions in your heart cannot make everything turn out the way it should for such a lovely person...it is in these times of plans going south, in times of "how could this be, it's not supposed to be like this" - that we must dig so deep within ourselves and try to pull out the best answers for the toughest questions. With all of your intuition and with a midwife you trusted instructing you....you made a choice. You can never know how thigns would have been if you had made a different choice....you made the choice I would have made, you made a really, really hard decision....

BUT, after that choice, which was made to keep things as safe as possible for you and your baby, everything sped up and was out of your hands. At that point, you put your trust in these professionals, they were supposed to treat your with decency, if not kindness, and they failed to do that. They were wrong, THEY did this...not you.

I was crying as I read this, but when I got to the point where you said "it sucks that I failed at a VBAC" - I really really started sobbing. Baby, you didn't fail. You were a mother, mothers have to do what they really think is best for their younglings and that is what you did. You were right, THEY were wrong. I can't say enough how very very sorry I am for you that this terrible things has happened.

You did the right thing....I hate hospitals and distrust doctors and nurses with a passion, PASSION. My birth was very minimally assited by a midwife who respected my wishes to be mostly alone with my DH....my next birth will be UC.....I hate hate hate hospitals....I WOULD HAVE MADE THE CHOICE YOU MADE. It's not you darling, it really isn't you. You didn't fail, you were failed.

Me and DH ...lovin' DD dust.gif(6/08) and DS kid.gif(11/09) Plus NEW BABY!! DD baby.gif (UC-5/12) We heartbeat.gif Water Birth/Homebirth/No Vax or Circ/BF/BW/Country Livin'! chicken3.gif

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#7 of 14 Old 02-26-2009, 12:04 AM
 
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I am sending you a HUGE hug. Your experience was AWFUL and sounds a lot like my own ... please get yourself good post partum support and wear your baby as much as you can. Wearing her will help fix the interupted bonding and the post partum support will help cut into the PPD potential.

I tried really hard to turn my own experience into something positive ...a tool that I can use as a doula to help my clients when they are confronted with similar situations. Giving it a purpose helped me process it. I will never forget or 'get over it' as my husband and mother suggested ... and neither will you... but you will process it and talking about it goes a long way to getting you there.

Please feel free to PM.

tireless sewer of teeny little clothes for Bamboletta dolls ...

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#8 of 14 Old 03-04-2009, 08:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry I haven't replied as soon as I wanted. I want to thank you all for your responses. Know that I will read them over and over again and they really help during those dark times. You are all so thoughtful and kind.

I'm doing better and being talked through some treatment by my doctor. I'll also file complaints as soon as I can organize my mind to do so.

But thank you for showing me such kindness and open arms. I'll update more when my time allows me.

Sav
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#9 of 14 Old 03-04-2009, 09:08 PM
 
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thanks for the update {{{{{{{Sav}}}}}}}

You are strong, you will thrive.
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#10 of 14 Old 03-04-2009, 10:58 PM
 
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Oh mama...you did not fail...you were failed by the system.

I'm so sorry that your birth was taken away from you and that your baby was kidnapped.

I have a similar story and have PTSD because of it. Seek help...don't be afraid. It might be difficult to find the right HCP I have been dealing with this for 5 years now and most mental health professionals really don't understand, keep looking!

You also might want to have a look at solace for mothers. It's a great resourse.

Take time to grieve...and be kind to yourself.

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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#11 of 14 Old 03-06-2009, 06:51 PM
 
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I just read your story...I am so sorry. It made me cry. I am glad you are finding some help and strength through this. You will never forget it, but it can get better as you watch that beauty you have grow.
Wish I could say more, big hugs to you

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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#12 of 14 Old 03-06-2009, 10:40 PM
 
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I'm so sorry this experience was so frustrating and painful for you. You wanted to be with your baby and they kept taking her away, performing procedures that turned out to be unneccessary.

With time you will heal but for now, you ARE allowed to grieve and feel traumatized. You DON'T have to pretend to be a happy mommy etc. You are allowed to be human!

You will heal. Be gentle with yourself.

wash.gif  Me  + bikenew.gif Dh =  broc1.gif  Dd1(9 yrs) + hearts.gif  Dd2(6 yrs) and blowkiss.gif Ds(3.5 yrs)
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#13 of 14 Old 03-07-2009, 05:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sometimes I feel like my strength is being sucked out of me little by little. Why do you think I'm strong MsBlack?
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#14 of 14 Old 03-07-2009, 10:21 AM
 
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Sav--

Well, from discussing your earlier concerns about pre-e with you....I gathered the impression that you are a strong (and smart) womyn

Also....here you are: wounded, hurting so much on the inside, but you did survive this far and now you're telling your story, reaching for healing....all that takes strength. If you're like so many womyn I know, you probably don't even know yet how strong you are....maybe you see it in others, but so rarely in yourself, the strength and smarts and love that you flow every day. In spite of the hurting and disillusionment, in spite of the loss and sense of betrayal and all the self doubt--you are keeping on.

But~what I *should* be saying instead is~~

SAV! you tell me about your incredible, miraculous strength that brought you through such a trial and on toward new life and wholeness!


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