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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have always intended to have an "assisted pregnancy" and an unassisted birth with this upcoming baby, ever since the day my last one was born. I understand that its not for everyone and dont judge anyone for their choices, regardless of what they are (thats my disclaimer
). I'm just curious how others have felt, in this situation.

My last pregnancy, I went the whole medicalized route, and never even considered having a homebirth let alone a UC until my OB/CNM started being very cruel to us. They suggested that I consider a VBAC, and then after finding out they couldn't find my records suddenly turned tail and REFUSED me a VBAC. It was almost surreal, being told by a doctor what I could and could not do, as if I was a child with no choice. They said so many brutally cruel things to my DH and I, including suggesting that I was going to kill my baby, suggesting to my husband that he should not "let me risk killing his baby because of my own wild ideas". These all based on a VBAC that THEY first suggested. (I didnt even know what one was until they suggested it, and had no idea that people actually birthed at home / without IVs and medical pain relievers either). They started ordering all these additional tests that were uncomfortable and expensive and trying to scare me into the hospital that way, once it was clear that I wasnt going to budge. But anyways, long story short... I want prenatal care, but I am TERRIFIED of going back to the OB/CNM. I have a phone number for one sitting on my desk that a midwife I respect referred me to, for 2 weeks now. (my insurance wont cover a midwife, other than a CNM working in an OBs office, and homebirth midwives are not even technically allowed to see VBACs, so in order for me to have prenatal care, thats really the only option)

I know that eventually I need to call, but I just have so much fear.
I'm afraid they are going to kick me out the second I tell them what happened with the last baby (I was finally kicked out of the OB practice on my due date for refusal to have a cesarean). I'm afraid they're going to be mean to me, and take the pleasure of being pregnant away from me again. I cried so much during my last pregnancy from the heartless things that were said to us.
I guess I'm just curious if anyone else has felt this way, and how you've handled it. For me, going UP really isn't an option, because I do want the tests done, and the heartbeat checked regularly. I guess I could possibly do it myself, but I'm not sure I would be comfortable with that. My tummy is in knots of fear just typing this. Can you imagine how I'm going to be actually going to the doctor's?
 

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Oh dear (((BIG HUGS))) i think its totally understandable that you don't want to see a doc after what you went through! But you know, it will all depend on the doctor that you see, it may be completely different, or even perfect! The medical community as a whole is not bad, they're good at what they do, but maybe a bit misled imo.
Call the doc that was recommended to you, and while you're at it, call a few others and go in for 1 appointment with each You WILL quite likely find someone that you are happy with.
I have had an assisted pregnancy, with too many interventions really... but it's my own fault for not being better informed and stronger willed. I never considered an unnasisted pregnancy, at this point i don't feel that i know enough to handle my (first) pregnancy without a little peace of mind from the docs.
That said, remember that YOU are paying THEM to help you, and you can refuse any tests or procedures. For example, i go in monthly for the silly weight records, urine tests and measurements, i had all the bloodwork and swabs done at the beginning, and i will get the GBS test. I have had to refuse a speculum exam, and that was akward but they can't make you do anything!
I KNOW how some doctor are, i was also told that i had no choice, and if i didn't listen that i would be risking my baby (it was all complete nonsense of course)
I doubt anything i said helps you

Good luck, let us know how it goes with the doctor, and i truly hope you find someone you are comfortable with if you decide to have an assisted pregnancy.

best wishes to you and your baby!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
actually that makes me feel a lot better
Just knowing that someone else has the same issues as me. That I'm not crazy for being afraid and still going through with finding an OB. I was beginning to wonder if I was just being a masachist putting myself through it.
 

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Can I ask....more about this...

Quote:
(I was finally kicked out of the OB practice on my due date for refusal to have a cesarean
.

Why did "they" want you to have a cesarean....and why did you end up having one anyway?
 

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I'm not sure where your recommendations for an ob came from, but I found a doula that I adore and, when it became apparent that things were going downhill with my hb mw, I asked her for some recs for more open-minded obs. She was able to provide me with a few. Of course, I butted heads with the one I picked and eventually convinced dh to uc instead, so maybe my opinion isn't so great.


Another idea: I ended up in the hospital a few weeks ago with an umbilical hernia, but because I was pregnant, they kept me in L&D. I talked with my nurses, who were FABULOUS, about some of my questions RE ob's who would do vaginal breech births, etc. The L&D nurses at your local hospital -- even if you have NO intention of delivering there -- are a font of information concerning the ob's in your area.

I hope you're able to find someone you can live with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quote:
Can I ask....more about this...

Why did "they" want you to have a cesarean....and why did you end up having one anyway?

My first birth was a cesarean when I was barely 18 and had no idea that I had options. My OB told me that the best course of action was a scheduled cesarean at 39 weeks because I had high blood pressure and developed some signs of toxemia towards the end, to just schedule a cesarean. He told me that it would have no adverse affects on me in the future, and wouldn't keep me from having a "regular birth" if I wanted to some day. I was on medicaid and had pretty much the only OB who was on the payrole for the clinic, so didn't have a whole lot of selection and he probably wasnt a very good OB looking back. That was 12 years ago now. I had just turned 18, but I was married. However, they treated me like a 12 yr old, but I'd assumed it was because I was so young...I still felt like a child at the time, tbh.

2 years ago I was pregnant w/ my 2nd child, and found an OB "like a good little patient". I did the normal stuff, did what they told me to, and they said that I could VBAC. However, because the birth was so long ago (10 yrs prior) they couldn't find the records documenting the incision. Even though my OB had said the cesarean wouldn't affect future births, the external incision looked "right", and it was so long ago, they decided it was too much of a risk to attempt a VBAC trial of labor, and suddenly, some time after 30 weeks, stopped talking about a VBAC and started insisting that I pick the date for my cesarean. (it wasnt "can we talk about the possibility" it was "what date is good for you") The more I wanted to discuss the whys and the statistical risks between them, (the more I gave the impression that it was my decision and not theirs) the more freaked out they got. In the end, I made the mistake of telling them that I was going to see another OB (I had an interview with one) and they took that as their "out" and sent me a "get the heck out" letter (they can't "fire me" that close to my EDD without me going to another OB).

In the end, I had a UC, and it was wonderful. My pregnancy SUCKED and was miserable and I cried and my BP was all over the place because of the stress, but the birth and the week before, week after were absolutely perfect. Having such a perfect birth once "professionals" were out of the picture kind of reinforced my dislike of medical intervention.
 

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When I first went to my midwife, I told her right away how distrustful I am with medicine and how the only thing about labor and delivery that gave me panic was the hospital staff. She was really very responsive to me, talked about all the steps they take to do the least invasive route, how their csection rate is the lowest around, etc., etc. It felt good to me to be heard and supported right off the bat. i bet if you go to the new guys, tell em what your concerns are, what will drive you right batty, they will be honest and tell you if they can agree to it or not. I think it also helps when feeling vulnerable to have someone with you who can reiterate your wishes once the scare tactics (if they happen) start up. I hate when I'm in a vulnerable place and agree to something I normally wouldn't. A lot of them will balk like crazy when they hear about UC and may refuse you, or may even refuse a home birth of any sort. If I were in the same situation, and just wanted to be monitored "in case" and have it covered by insurance, I would go to the ob's office but I would LIE about my intentions on the big day. But that's me. no trust for the people who are dominated by malpractice insurance.
 

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Could you find a non-CNM midwife for just the prenatal care and just state from the beginning that you plan to UC?
 

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thanks for letting us know more about your experiences. The most awful thing about fear is, once it's in there , it's in there. This doesn't even compare with your situation, but I have a severe phobia of the dentist, and I can't rationalize it away. You have a reason to feel mistrust!!!

I can't offer any "advise" though....you are in a hard place. Do you have other options if this one turns out badly?
 

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What tests do you want done that you would need a doctor for? My attended pregnancy was attended by a direct entry midwife, so I have never had a bunch of tests. I really can't think of anything a doctor could do for me that would be useful. My midwife checked my urine - I do that, easy - she measured my fundal height - also easy - blood pressure, listened to the baby - we bought a doppler on ebay so we can hear our baby, and then we chit chatted about stuff. That was it. No blood work. I typed my blood myself with an Eldon card. I can feel when my sugar is off or if I'm getting anemic - I don't need a test for that... first pregnancy my chiropractor "prescribed" me an u/s so I could see the baby's position and stuff. Second pregnancy we lived on the border so we went to Mexico for a u/s - found out the baby was breech - didn't do anything about that, he turned on his own at 35 weeks.

We have a doctor we really like, and I considered having an AP and planning an "oops" UC just to have him as a back up. But I just can't do it. I don't want to go through all that testing and harrassment and hassle. I loved my UP last time.
 

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with my first pregnancy i had high BP when measured at the OB office, mainly because i'm always freaked out when i'm there (it's ok at home). near the end of the pregnancy they had me doing non stress tests, which also freaked me out because if the baby doesn't respond the way they like, they will push for an induction or c/s. then the birth, while uncomplicated and fast, left me angry and feeling like i was a subordinate to their protocols.

so i learned more about birth, learned about UC, wanted that for my next birth, but felt not quite confident enough. i settled on a homebirth, but interviewed several midwives, and discussed the BP issue. one i really liked, but she was a CNM, and i felt that was too medical for me. once that training is there, it leaves its mark. i choose the ones who seemed the most easygoing and hands off (as well as i "clicked" with her and her apprentice the best). as it happened i ended up UC (i think i unconsciously sped up to beat the midwives), but the midwives were there for the placenta delivery. were i to deliver again, i would probably plan (consciously this time) a UC, but might go with an AP to have some support there. and AP also would mean that if there were a problem in the labor/delivery that led to transport, i would have someone knowledgable but with a more hands off perspective to advocate for me at the hospital.

i totally get how distrustful you feel, and it is perfectly reasonable, especially given the power games they played with you. the best thing you can do is to decide to take on the power yourself: decide how you would feel safest. do you want support? respectful support, that is. do you want to be left alone? do you want resources you can "consult" with, but nobody "following" you? once you know what you want, it will be easier to go about getting it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you so much for the supportive responses.
This is my favorite part of mothering.com.


Quote:
Could you find a non-CNM midwife for just the prenatal care and just state from the beginning that you plan to UC?
That gets kinda complicated. I am a VBAC, so its illegal for a midwife to have me as a client. While I could kind of get around it, since they're not there for the birth, I cant use my insurance, which increases the cost by a ton. Considering how little I really need from them, I'm hoping to be able to just suck it up and go to the OB. I keep telling myself that they cannot do anything that I don't agree to let them do.

Quote:
What tests do you want done that you would need a doctor for?
I talked to a midwife (that I would use for pregnancy care if my insurance covered it...she's incredible and very non-judgemental) and she said that her clients have to see an OB or a CNM atleast twice during the pregnancy, once for the primary blood work up (for genetic disorders, sugar, etc...I'm not exactly sure what every test is) and once for the 20 week U/S (which assures that baby is growing as expected, has all their fingers and toes, and is on schedule). I really only need an OB for these two things, technically. I could do the blood sugar/protein test myself with a kit from online, and I take my BP myself already (to have a baseline to check as pregnancy progresses because I am concerned about high bp) and I could rent another doppler (I rented one w/ my last when it was obvious the OB was going to kick me out). I could never figure out the fundal height thing, but I think a friend of mine could do it. I'm just not sure how I would tell an OB that I was not coming back until 20 weeks and then not come back again. The last OB I used also wanted to be paid in full by 6 months, so I'd have to blow them off on that one too.

I think my fear is just born out of feeling helpless. Thank you all for helping me look at it from a rational perspective.
My husband is incredibly supportive. I asked him how he wanted to proceed and he said "honey, I'm here to support you. Just tell me what you need and its yours"
He also swore to go to every single appointment with me and play interference, like he did with the last pregnancy. He knows how much they freak me out, and doesnt trust them any more than I do, so he's good back up.
I think I'm going to talk to him about maybe doing the 2 visits, and doing the rest ourselves. I think I can get a consult to get the fundal height etc from a midwife without breaking any laws, as long as I'm not technically their client. I'll have to ask around on the exact laws.

The biggest thing for me is eliminating as many "what ifs" as possible from my labor. I don't handle suprises very well, and if there is anything genetically wrong, or any issues from pregnancy, I don't want to linger on them during my birth. I've always seen birth as the easy part, and growing a human being from a single tiny single cell as the complicated part.
 

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I'm not sure what kind of insurance you have, or if you could find a family practice doc who would help you, but my pcp (who is a FP doc) ordered my tests & the 20 week u/s. She did tell me that she could NOT see me for prenatals, and if there were any complications she would have to refer me out to an OB, but she had no problems ordering labwork and the u/s for me so that it was covered by insurance.

Another thought, again based on how this pregnancy has gone for me: I ended up HATING the ob in the practice I'm using, but ADORE the CNM. She is fantastic, very understanding, and has made it very clear that I can refuse any test/exam/etc. I want. I was alternating visits between the OB & CNM, but the last OB visit went so badly that the next time I saw the CNM I told her that if I couldn't see just her from now until the end of the pregnancy, I wanted a referral to another practice. She said that was fine ... that their SOP is to alternate visits, but some women have a definite preference for one over the other and they honor that. Having said all that, I have NOT told them I'm still planning a homebirth, esp. not that I plan to uc! They do know that I was seeing a hb mw, though. FWIW, the CNM that I love used to work at the only fsbc in the state, so she's much more used to dealing with crunchy moms.
If you can find one of those, it'll probably go a long way towards easing your stress & fear.
 

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I think if you're upfront with the doctor's office when you call for a consultation, about planning a HB, and just wanting to be "followed" by an OB, the office staff should be able to tell you whether the doc would be willing to work with you under those circumstances. I have found that office staff generally know the doc's policies and temperament and generally reflect both, so if you ask them, they can usually be very informative, and if they're mean or abusive, you can hang up the phone and know that's not the doc for you. In your consultation be completely honest about only wanting XYZ tests (be prepared with a list), and reiterate that you're planning a HB and he is your "backup OB" (I wouldn't lie to him/her about UC, but I would omit and imply and tell him it's not up for discussion, to avoid the hassle). If the doc isn't cool with those things in the consultation, there's no obligation to come back. And one of the things about a consult is that you are under no obligation to remove any of your clothing, submit to any testing (blood pressure, weight, peeing in a cup) or anything. You're there to meet the doctor, period.
 
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