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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm so terrified <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I think a lot of it is the fear of the unknown, but most of it is fear of pain!<br><br>
I've completely ruled out an epidural because I'm more scared about getting one then going through the pain of labor/birth. I thought a paracervical sounded great, but apparently they rarely do those anymore. my Mom had one with my brother and said it was great.<br><br>
what are other options? what do you ladies plan on doing and why?<br><br>
I feel like I have a pretty high tolerance for pain, but who knows...I don't want to be miserable. and I certainly don't want to feel like I could give up during labor.
 

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Absolutely terrified some days. Other days my senses prevail and I remember that women have been doing this for thousands of years without pain drugs and gotten through it just fine. It's LABOUR, it'll be hard work, but if you prepare yourself you should be just fine. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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When I was younger the thought of pushing out a baby scared the wits out of me. Oddly enough, I never was once scared of giving birth during pregnancy. People have a bad habit of telling horrific and scary labor stories, but I just brush them off. Childbirth is a natural process, just keep that in mind <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> You will be fine!!!
 

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Not scared at all. Just remember that you get breaks between contractions. Just take one contraction at a time and refuse the vag exams. the only times I thought I couldn't do it was when they checked me and would announce "your only 4 cm, etc" They say you do 1 cm an hour but I didn't. I would 3-4 hours with no change and then go 3-4 cm in one hour. They are no indication of when birth will happen and are demoralizing. And the contractions I had at 2 cm were as intense as the ones at 10 cm, just further apart. Everyone told me it just got worse and worse, but it was just 20 hours of the same. Well except the pitocin, that changed things, avoid that.
 

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I'm not afraid of the pain, although, I'm a bit afraid of becoming exhausted if I have a long labor and a little afraid of complications. But these are manageable fears for me. My biggest unmanageable fears BY FAR are those involving intervention, having to go to the hospital and just generally dealing with the people around me. I'm going to a birth center, so I think it will be a better environment than a hospital, but my midwives are CNMs and so far with my visits I've got the impression that they are a bit more medically oriented than most midwives because they are constantly being reviewed by a doctor. I haven't discussed this with them yet, but I'm afraid I might have to fight to not have vaginal exams during labor, etc. I agree w/the PP that this is demoralizing. I honestly think I'd feel better giving birth at home but I'm just a tad too far from the hospital to feel completely comfortable. I'm also a little hesitant since this is my first and I can't completely rid myself of the fear of the unknown. There are days though when I still think about home birth, and we've done a phone interview with a CNM who is a little over an hour from me who does home births. MY DH will support me with whatever I want to do. He probably wouldn't admit it but I think he might feel a little bit more comfortable with the birth center over home birth. Of course, I might also be just telling myself that. I love having a supportive husband but when all the options are open and on the table it is harder to decide!<br><br>
We all that said, though, there are days when I do feel moments of fear when I think there is a baby inside me and only one way out (naturally anyway!)
 

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A little bit scared. Mostly it is wondering if I am going to tear again because I have freight train kids, and once they start to come out there is NO stopping them. DD2 I didn't even bear down to push her out. My body pushed her out in one push.<br><br>
Mostly it is a fear of stitches afterward, not so much the birth itself. Is that totally bizzarre?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
just reading this makes me even more scared! ahhh!<br><br>
so, everyone plans on doing it naturally? I'm going to try, but if it gets to be too much, then I'm asking for something. my cousin went for 25 hours with nothing, and then finally asked for drugs - the baby came (without a c-section) right after...all she needed was to relax a bit and out he popped!
 

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I have given birth naturally 3 times. In a hopstal environment and everything! First time around it was more because everything went so fast, but after discovering how horrible it WASN'T, I figured I could easily do it again. Your body makes its own pain killers (endorphins) that help you cope, so it really wasn't that big a deal to go natural.<br><br>
FWIW, I also have a high tolerance for pain. Your body knows what to do, and if you listen to it and move into the positions it is telling you will work best for you, you will do just fine phunkylady. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I have to suggest that you read some positive literature on the subject of natural childbirth because honestly, it doesn't have to be that bad!<br><br>
My first labour was long and hard, mostly because I was young, scared, unprepared, and took waaayyyyy too much crap from the medical staff. My second was fine. I'm not saying there was no pain, but it was manageable, for sure. I knew what was happening, and I took privacy when I felt I needed it, and things were lovely. This time I'm hypnobirthing, and I am anticipating a very smooth labour.<br><br>
Please do yourself a favour and read some POSITIVE stuff. I just finished The farmer and the obstetrician by Michel Odent, and it was great. The hypnobirthing text is also very fortifying stuff, and I'm sure lots of the women on here can recommend more. You have nothing to fear but fear itself, really and truly in this situation, because fear induces tension, which causes a slower and more painful birth process. As some of the other posters mentioned, don't let the medical people be checking you constanly either. It can be discouraging, and can also cause you to tense up even more. Relax, you'll be FINE.
 

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Hi honey, not your DDC, but oyu knwo you're my girl.<br>
I think you should look into doulas, take a really good childbirth class,watch really good videos (TURN OFF THE BABY STORY!) and maybe have me send you some really good reading material and books if you'd like.<br>
You CAN do it. Your body knows how, your baby knows how. Don't let your head get in the way of your birth! Which is what us humans do ya know.<br>
What is your birth mythology? Is it positive? Or is it one of those "at least the baby is healthy" kind of things? Maybe you should talk to mamas who have had really awesome births. And yeah it can be scary- you've never done it before! And it's a big deal! It's normal to be afraid of things you've never done, especially when you live in a counrty that loves to instill fear.<br>
I watch womyn give birth all the time- a lot first time mamas and you know what? They all did it. And it makes you a different womyn afterwards having done it without intervention especially in a hospital.<br>
Here's a way to look at it that my preceptor always tells mamas: You get in a car everday, often times speeding way too fast, eating, putting on make up, talking ont he phone, you fly in the sky and birth scares you? Humans aren't meant to drive, espcially while doing 10 thing sat once, we aren't meant to fly. But we are mean tto give birth and breastfeed our babies. So if you can drive, if you fly...you're much safer giving birth. It's as safe as life gets! We'd all be dead if giving birth didn't work, ya know?<br>
Birth is hard work, it hurts and you can do it.<br>
I'll even fly out and be your doula!!!<br>
Much love
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
thank you, everyone <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
Lizzo, I could use some good reading material - just point me in the right direction! and of course, I'd love for you to be my doula, but Brad & I are broke, broke, broke (just bought a house!) - same goes for finding a doula here...unless I can find someone here that will do it just for the experience.<br><br>
I'm not scared about the labor pains really...I'm scared about an episiotomy, or tearing, the stitches (these are the BIG three for me)...I'm scared the baby will get stuck in the birthing canal, forceps, unwanted touching, probing etc. but, I do want to be in a hospital, I know that much. I want to be hooked up to monitors - goddess forbid something were to go wrong.<br><br>
eta: I read some people lose sexual function from being cut/tearing...
 

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To be honest, I am actually excited to give birth again. I can't wait! It was the most amazing thing I have ever done and really and truly I look forward to the day and am a little sad that this will probably be the last time...<br>
I agree with a pp, read some positive stuff about birth. I really like Ina May Gaskins "Spiritual Midwifery". I find it really inspiring.<br>
With my first I read alot about orgasmic birth, which I was totally shocked to find out that was even possible, but it really helped me go into my first birth with a positive and completely different outlook than I first had.<br>
Now all that said, I did not have an orgasm while giving birth<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> and it was hard work and painful. But you just do it and it's really incredible...
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>phunkylady</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/6494123"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">just reading this makes me even more scared! ahhh!<br><br>
so, everyone plans on doing it naturally? I'm going to try, but if it gets to be too much, then I'm asking for something. my cousin went for 25 hours with nothing, and then finally asked for drugs - the baby came (without a c-section) right after...all she needed was to relax a bit and out he popped!</div>
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<br>
See, that's the key, relax! The more you worry, the harder you make it for yourself. (I can say this... but I've never done it before!) My MIL was a Doula and a childbirth educator and her main line to me these days is "don't let anyone talk you out of or scare you out of doing what is right for YOU and your baby". She keeps saying that yes, it's hard work, but focus, relax, and keep DH there to fight for me, and everything will be fine.<br><br>
MIL left a copy of Husband Coached Child Birth by Dr. Bradley and I found it to be both a good read and inspiring.
 

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Alot of women are scared of it, that is ok. But you can do it.<br><br>
I'm looking forward to birth-- where I can prove once again to myself that I am woman (hear me roar! lol) and I am strong and capable. I like the high from giving birth and the pride in myself I feel afterwards. If I can give birth I can do anything-- and really, birth wasn't as bad as everyone makes it out to be.<br><br>
One lady I know just continued to tell herself "I can handle this, it's going to get worse, I can handle it" And it worked really well for her-- because it never got worse, she had kept thinking that right up to birth and "over shot".<br>
I don't know if that would work for you... I don't think it would work for me, but it depends on how you view challenges.<br><br>
Read only positive birth stories-- they build you up and make you more comfortable w/ birth.<br>
Books: Ida May's Guide to Childbirth, Spiritual Midwifery, Sheila Kitzinger's The Complete Book of Pregnancy and Childbirth (has a great chapter on being scared). I'm sure there are others, but those are great to start with.<br><br>
Just start telling yourself every day that you know you can do it, you trust your body. Even if you don't feel like that, you can convince yourself.<br><br>
Hiring a Doula would help a ton! And that would be someone you can talk to about your fears- she would be able to help alot.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Goldiemom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/6494031"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">A little bit scared. Mostly it is wondering if I am going to tear again because I have freight train kids, and once they start to come out there is NO stopping them. DD2 I didn't even bear down to push her out. My body pushed her out in one push.<br><br>
Mostly it is a fear of stitches afterward, not so much the birth itself. Is that totally bizzarre?</div>
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Oh that is totally me -- great big whacking 2nd degree tears each time. THe stitching was horrible. I am really wanting some good coaching on pushing to *try* to slow things down.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>phunkylady</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/6494697"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><br>
I'm not scared about the labor pains really...I'm scared about an episiotomy, or tearing, the stitches (these are the BIG three for me)...I'm scared the baby will get stuck in the birthing canal, forceps, unwanted touching, probing etc. but, I do want to be in a hospital, I know that much. I want to be hooked up to monitors - goddess forbid something were to go wrong.<br><br>
eta: I read some people lose sexual function from being cut/tearing...</div>
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How familiar are you with the way that <i>your</i> care provider and hospital view birth?<br><br>
Also, I'm wondering what kind of research that you've done regarding these interventions that you are afraid of? And the monitoring? What kind of monitoring are you wanting?<br><br>
Please understand that I am <span style="text-decoration:underline;">not</span> trying to change your plan to birth in a hospital, if that is where you feel you will be the most comfortable. It's just that I feel like I learned the first time around, when I was 19 and basically alone, planning a hospital birth, I learned that all of the things I was afraid of were definitely going to happen to me if I had my baby in the local hospital where I am.<br><br>
1) Episiotomy-the mindset, unfortunately, where I am is that routine episiotomies are helpful and *no* first-time mama can birth w/out them. No way would that work for me.<br><br>
2) Tearing-after reading a lot about homebirth and a lot of positive birth stories, I kept reading about care providers that support the perineum or show mamas how to support the perineum to prevent tearing. Also, waterbirths aid in preventing tearing, as does massage and olive oil. Sounded good to me!<br><br>
3) Baby getting stuck in birthing canal-If a hospital, care facility allows and encourages a mama to change positions and if the care provider is skilled in aiding "stuck babies" then this is not a problem. In my local hospital, moving freely is not an option due to all the monitoring. The mindset is: "Baby's stuck, let's cut 'er open!"<br><br>
4) Forceps-#3 applies here also<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"><br><br>
5) Unwanted touching/probing. I've witnessed several births here. What I saw was 3 or 4 nurses, at least, routinely doing cervical checks to monitor "progress". I didn't want everyone and their buddy sticking their hands in my woo, no thanks. Getting checked is uncomfortable (I know this now, but didn't before) and I could see how the anticipation of Sue, Dick and Sally popping in so often could make a mama have a hard time relaxing. As someone mentioned before, it can also be discouraging when you feel like you've been in labor for.ev.er and you don't hear what you want to hear. Thus, mama loses confidence in herself and body and shuts down more.<br><br>
RE: Monitors-I completely understand a mama's need to know that her baby is ok every minute, BUT those monitors do not always give an accurate representation of what is really going on and sometimes they lead to panic in the mama, creating more complications and an increased rate of c-secs. Several studies that I have seen show that constant fetal monitoring does not lead to better outcomes statistically than intermmitent heart tones taken by a doppler or fetascope.<br><br>
I really think the best way to have a good birth is to be educated, educated, educated. That way <i>you</i> are the one making the decisions or at the least, understanding what is going on and why.<br><br>
I'll also echo what pps have said about avoiding negative birth stories and immersing yourself in positive birth culture and stories.<br><br>
There are more specific things that I remember working for me during labor to deal with pain and fear, but I've already wrote a novel, so that's probably a topic for another thread.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
I really and truly wish you the best labor possible and hope that you know that this whole post is written with love and compassion.<br><br>
It's taken me so long to write this that I hope I'm not repeating too much of what wiser mamas have written.<br><br>
(please excuse the atrocious spelling. i have brain-mush)
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>phunkylady</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/6494123"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">so, everyone plans on doing it naturally? I'm going to try, but if it gets to be too much, then I'm asking for something. my cousin went for 25 hours with nothing, and then finally asked for drugs - the baby came (without a c-section) right after...all she needed was to relax a bit and out he popped!</div>
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I will if I can. But I have orthopedic and chronic pain issues and I've been warned by my doctor that if I don't progress, he'll recommend an epidural. The longer my labor lasts, the more at risk I am. As I've mentioned on another thread, I've known from the beginning that there will be some level of medical involvement in the birth - I think I'm probably the only person on the board who will have an orthopedic surgeon on call during labor! - and I'm comfortable with it.<br>
But I'm pretty terrified, too. Pain is an old, familiar companion - but I've never given birth before. Pain, for me, has always signaled something malfunctioning, something wrong, and I have to teach myself that this pain will be productive!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm going to be seeing my midwife on the 18th, so I'll have a lot of questions for her. I haven't really asked her much about a birthing plan because I didn't know anything. this is my first baby and all I've known up until now was from what others told me. I've been doing some reading on my own which has left me with a plethora of questions. anyway, I appreaciate everyone's help and advice.<br><br>
I'd like a doula, but unless we can find one who will do it for free, I don't think that's going to happen. we just bought a house and we're completely strapped.<br><br>
and btw, although I want to birth in a hospital (and I don't think that will change for me), I do have a midwife.
 

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I cant wait. I haave had two very unwanted c-sections and I would give anything to have this baby the right way. I was in labor with my first for 33 hours and I do remember the pain, but I dont care. I dont ever want to have another c-section.
 
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