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#1 of 12 Old 07-25-2010, 01:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone have experience, or know of someone else's good or bad experience giving birth at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA?

I'm specifically looking into Dr. Beth Hardiman and/or the Midwives at Mt Auburn program.

Thanks in advance!
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#2 of 12 Old 07-25-2010, 01:24 PM
 
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Are you a VBAC? I was, and they were recommended as a vbac-friendly hospital.

However, the midwives were bound by too many hospital policies and I decided I couldn't safely VBAC there. (CFM, no water birth, induction forced/recommended, amnio recommended).

I thought the midwives themselves (the ones I saw) were really nice. One of them facilitated me getting my rhogam shot 3 days after my homebirth after the mw tested the baby's blood type. So I thought that was going the extra mile for me, even though I hadn't birthed with them.
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#3 of 12 Old 07-25-2010, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyMommy2 View Post
Are you a VBAC? I was, and they were recommended as a vbac-friendly hospital.

However, the midwives were bound by too many hospital policies and I decided I couldn't safely VBAC there. (CFM, no water birth, induction forced/recommended, amnio recommended).

I thought the midwives themselves (the ones I saw) were really nice. One of them facilitated me getting my rhogam shot 3 days after my homebirth after the mw tested the baby's blood type. So I thought that was going the extra mile for me, even though I hadn't birthed with them.
Not a VBAC. This is my first. Would you recommend the Midwives group for a first timer looking to try to have a natural birth in a hospital?
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#4 of 12 Old 07-25-2010, 07:20 PM
 
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I strongly recommend getting an experienced doula.
I wish I had one. I was completely bullied in the hospital. I wanted a natural birth and ended up having an emergency c-section due to their unnecessary interventions.

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#5 of 12 Old 07-25-2010, 10:17 PM
 
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Hello, Mamas!

I am writing to let you know that I have removed some posts containing and quoting User Agreement Violations, and to ask you to please refrain from providing negative reviews of care providers or venues on thread. It is understandable that you would want to warn other mothers off of places where you had a poor experience. However we ask that you do so via PM, and leave the positive reviews to the thread. This is a process that you agreed to when you signed the User Agreement upon joining MDC, and we appreciate your cooperation.

I would also like you to consider that a great outcome for one mother may be a traumatic one for another, and that every person's birth experience is different, and that every mother is looking for something a little different from a care provider.

For instance...I fired my homebirth midwife mid labor and went to the hospital--for the very things a girlfriend of mine VALUED in her midwife. Sooooo...please take reviews, both good and bad, with a grain of salt and do your due diligence by interviewing providers and staff yourself.

Warmly,
Courtenay_e, Moderator of The Tribal Areas

Mama to two awesome kids. Wife to a wonderful, attached, loving husband. I love my job-- I'm a Midwife, Doula and Childbirth Educator, Classes forming now!

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#6 of 12 Old 07-26-2010, 01:51 PM
 
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I had a VBAC at Mt. Auburn with the midwives. I was much more aware of what I wanted and knowing how to assert myself the second time around so I think that helped in working with the hospital/midwives in achieving the birth that I had hoped for.

I too wanted a natural birth with my first, but not knowing how 'unnatural' hospital births can be, I didn't know how "structured" the staff could be despite their seemingly willingness to work with you and your birth plan. Albeit, I had my son at a different hospital in Virginia, from what I've heard, the standard hospital care for L&D is pretty similar across the board with Ob/gyns. So, if you really want a natural birth, I'd say to learn as much as you can about the standard hospital policies and know how to deal with those practices beforehand. If you decide to birth at a hospital, have a strong, assertive advocate by your side when you are going through labor so you don't have to deal with anything besides being focused on birthing your baby.

With that said, my birthing experience was great at Mt. Auburn, and I didn't feel bullied for any of my alternative choices throughout my prenatal care on through L&D. I would say it is one of the better hospital options for natural births in the area, particularly if you work with the midwives.

Crunchy city momma to DS Adler (7/4/07) and VBAC success with DD Darby (10/31/09)
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#7 of 12 Old 07-30-2010, 02:38 PM
 
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I had a mixed experience with the midwives, but I've got to say short of paying for a home birth out of pocket for $$$ I did not find an alternative I preferred to them. My attempts at natural childbirth were thwarted by PROM with merconium, no labor and stalled-labor after 11 hours on pit. I did avoid a section and I think that was a big part because of the midwives flexibility, an OB would have done it a lot sooner given it took 42 hours from water breaking to birth.

If you want Dr Hardiman, I hear you've got to get in early, she has a short patient list.

Mama to DD1 4/08fly-by-nursing1.gif and DD2 10/10 bfinfant.gifcd.gifcat.gif
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#8 of 12 Old 08-18-2010, 10:25 PM
 
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I gave birth in 2009 with Beth Hardiman at Mt. Auburn. I love Beth. My labor was difficult, and honestly there were a couple of things I wish I could change (and yes, a couple of points related to Beth), but overall, I am really, really glad Beth was my doctor.

I originally wanted a drug-free, natural birth. But things didn't work out that way. I was in prodromal labor for 5 days (so intense I was unable to eat or sleep that whole time), and then I labored in the hospital for an additional 18 hours. Beth towed the line of respecting my wishes for a natural birth and yet laying out my options for moving forward. Eventually, we decided together to go with an epidural and pitocin, and in retrospect I am really glad (and in fact wish I had done it sooner in the process). During the whole ordeal, not once did she try to hurry me or bully me or step up the interventions, even though at one point in desperation I told her to just give me a C-section. The vaginal delivery I finally had went smoothly and beautifully.

Earlier this year I also went through a really tough miscarriage at 14 weeks (with a D&C) with Beth. She could not have been more caring or gone out of her way more to be there for me.

To me, Beth is the best of both worlds...much more midwife-minded than your average OB, and one who believes in natural birth, yet she's a doctor with an arsenal of medical knowledge and expertise at her disposal should the need arise. She's also a pretty straight-shooter, which I like. Yet she is also extremely caring, and I've never seen a doctor more passionate and excited about her work.

As to Mt. Auburn itself, I really liked it there. With a couple of exceptions (one or two nurses were not the nicest women in the world), the staff was caring, accommodating, and helpful. In particular, the nurse who attended my birth, as well as the head nurse in Recovery, were exceptional. There were lactation consultants available to help out as well. I have no major complaints at all, and I was sad to leave when all was said and done. The food was even good!
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#9 of 12 Old 08-20-2010, 01:18 PM
 
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This board seems to mention Dr. Hardiman a lot (positively) and Mt Auburn. I had DS there and felt I had a positive experience--but I had my second child at Brigham & Women's and was even more impressed. The circumstances were different, but I felt Brigham was actually more supportive of BFing, rooming-in, kangaroo care, and I actually did have a natural birth there with an MD (and I feel, thanks to hypnobabies) which I did not at Mt Auburn (though again, different circumstance, DS was 5 weeks early, DD only 3, he was jaundiced, she wasn't...) just putting that out there because I really was happy with Brigham.

Mom to DS 5/05 and DD 9/08
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#10 of 12 Old 08-20-2010, 03:32 PM
 
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Anyone considering Beth Hardiman should PM me.
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#11 of 12 Old 08-26-2010, 12:25 AM
 
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I was happy with my birth at Mount Auburn. I worked with one particular midwife throughout the majority of my pregnancy, and I won the lottery and had her at my birth. I also had a doula, which made a world of difference. I had a relatively uncomplicated natural birth.
That said there were a few things I found frustrating during my prenatal care and labor.

1- We went back and forth a bunch about the GBS test. I wasn't going to take anti-biotics regardless of the outcome and they couldn't quite get their act together to tell me what the consequences of that would be. I ended up taking the test, but one midwife (not the one I liked) did imply that there was a chance that a pediatrician might insist on invasive testing of the baby if I refused anti-biotics and was either GBS+ or had not been tested. Fortunately I was negative and we did not have ot have that fight
2- They do intermittent fetal monitoring during labor which is really normal from what I understand. In practice though, it meant that they wanted me to lie still for five minutes through a contraction every (half hour, I think?? May have been more or less). I found this excruciating and it really stressed me out every time we had to do it. Bleh. This may be something that you would have to deal with in almost any birth setting though, I am not sure.
3- I don't feel like I got great breastfeeding advice. I probably should have done more homework about this before hand. Next time I plan to do kangaroo care, no swaddling and let the baby crawl to the breast on his/her own. I think they would have been fine with this if I had asked for it, but I didn't know better and so I left her mostly swaddled while we were in the hospital. I don't know if this contributed to my breastfeeding difficulties (we did eventually work it out, but it was *tough*) but I can't imagine that it helped.

So overall, I was happy with Mt. Auburn, but it is a hospital and bound by certain rules and "norms" as such. Definitely get a doula for a hospital birth. I am not sure what we will do next time. I would love a home birth, but the hospital is free and my experience there was fine. So I am undecided on that count.
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#12 of 12 Old 08-31-2010, 01:37 PM
 
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I saw the midwives and was happy overall. A few times in the course of my preg, some of the rules and "have to"'s got on my nerves, but I was open about my feelings and reasons with my midwife and we worked through them. I was not happy about "you get who's on call" and let this be known. My midwife, though off that day, had them call her when I went into labor and came for the delivery b/c of it. (surprise to me!!)

When we arrived for the birth, they had a copy of my birth plan and reminded me of some of the things I wasn't thinking about b/c the labor was harder than my other babies--like wanting the birthing stool, having the baby crawl up to nurse, and taking home the placenta (which we couldn't do b/c we forgot the cooler.) They didn't give me any problems about refusing the hep vx or refusing the eye goop. And though they said they take the baby to the nursery within the first hour or two of birth, we stayed in the labor/recovery room for at least 3 hours without interference.

I felt the breast feeding support was very good, though, since this was baby #4, I didn't have too many questions. I was a little annoyed by them constantly needing to fill out (to the hour. really?) forms about when the baby nursed, but they never bothered me during the middle of the night.

I could see a lot more "hospital policy" issues in the postpartum/nursery area than the hospital where had my other kids (NH)--they were reluctant to let DS out of the nursery at his initial check-in b/c his temp wasn't as high as they like, but every time they tried to warm him, he'd start to sweat and cool off more. They finally relented and let him out and he was fine. (we're talking about an hour or less, though, for the whole thing.)

Overall, though, I was happier than I expected to be and will have my next baby there if we are still in the area.
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