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Discussion Starter #1
So I am just wondering who else is out there... I believe really strongly in thinking for ourselves and not just doing what we're told because somebody with some initials behind their name says so. Is there anybody else out there who feels like they are in tune with their body and able to tell what is going on without a lot of medical intervention? I have Fleetwood Mac stuck in my head as I think about typing this post.<br><br>
With our first pregnancy, I only went to a nutritionist and then my birth professional at the end. I read every book I could get my hands on, and watched some really awesome documentaries (tried to avoid the ones with less than positive birth experiences).<br><br>
I had no ultrasounds or prenatal testing. I ate almost exclusively organic (tried to do gluten free when I could, which is not easy to get both organic and gluten free), and never touched tap water (except when I was where there was an AWESOME well). Did my yoga and pilates, and spinning babies exercises, and followed a pretty strict regimen on supplements (Standard Process) from the nutritionist.<br><br>
When I ended up having her at the hospital instead of home, they were running around freaking out saying I hadn't had any prenatal care. The doctor told me I had no idea what I was talking about when I said I didn't have strep B and didn't need the rhogam, and he said I couldn't possibly know the sex of our DD. The doctor was actually angry I was correct about everything I said.<br><br>
I knew I was having a girl, because I woke up one day and the first thought in my head was, "I'm pregnant and having a girl."<br><br>
I'm Rh-, and I never had any rhogam because I felt in my heart we didn't need it. My husband is +, and our daughter is - also.<br><br>
I didn't have a strep B screen because I knew all I needed to do was a garlic clove suppository two nights in a row around a week before our due date (which I calculated to be several weeks sooner than a "wheel" said since I knew what day our DD was conceived). When I ended up having her at the hospital after all (3 days prior to what I said my due date was), the strep B culture was negative, just as I knew it would be.<br><br>
I'm just really thinking about all of this today because I am headed off to a first appointment with the midwife. Someone I trust completely swears to me the midwife is awesome. Her receptionist, however, scares me. She's already told me <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/blahblah.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="blah blah"> I can't know my due date and the wheel must be correct (I think she's serious), and at least one ultrasound is mandatory (um, again, I think she's being serious). I'm not too worried about whether I end up with a midwife or not, so as much as anything, it's a bit of a curiosity to check it out.<br><br>
So I am curious to hear about others' experiences with going your own way.
 

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Totally hear you! I'm not really the type to follow other people's instructions very well anyway, and I lost respect for most health care professionals during my first pregnancy once I saw how they treated pregnant women and realized what is really happening with pregnancy and birth care in the US. About halfway through my pregnancy I finally found an awesome midwife who truly believed in women's ability to give birth. She put absolutely no restrictions on me, took me seriously, believed what I said. She was great. I wish we still lived there and she was still practicing.<br><br>
This pregnacy I have a job that requires that I get healthcare from someone on their "qualified" list of providers. There is one midwife in my area, so I will be using her. I don't know how she will be. She is a CNM. Either way, this is my pregnancy, and I am taking everything with a grain of salt. I will grow and birth my baby my own way, and everyone else can just <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/censored.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="censored">.
 

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I agree with you - I think you should be in charge or your prenatal care. For me, that means reserving the right to say no to any tests or procedures.<br><br>
With DD, I went to all of my scheduled prenatal appointments, and I will with this baby too. But I was very clear with my doctors when they suggested something that I disagreed with. Nothing is 'mandatory' - it's your body, you can always say no. I ended up switching providers (OB practice to midwives) at 36 weeks because I didn't like what I was being told about my birth plan. I was also tired of arguing with them about my due date and the baby's size. I skipped a few early ultrasounds because the OBs thought she was too small - I knew she was fine, genetically she should be small (DH and I are on the small side), and their dates were off.<br><br>
The midwives listened when I told them I have longer cycles and knew when we conceived. If I did not want an internal exam, they didn't do one. When I showed up at the birthing center (already fully dilated), I let them monitor the baby for about 15 minutes, while the tub was filling. Then I asked them to switch to using just a handheld doppler.<br><br>
My first appointment with this babe will be this Friday, when I'm 8 weeks. The receptionist tried to schedule me about a week too soon, based on her nifty little wheel. I calmly but clearly stated that her date was off, I knew my cycles, and if they wanted to see me at 8 weeks, that would the 21st not the 14th. She wasn't happy, but she couldn't force me to come in.<br><br>
My experience was certainly more traditional than yours, but I feel similarly about being in control and not being pushed around. I do think you can achieve that and still work with a health care provider, if that's what you choose to do. Just be clear and straight forward about what you want and do not want. If you feel like you're being bullied, find someone else.
 

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I feel very very similarly to all the pp's as well.<br><br>
I am planning a homebirth....and I would really like to have a UC..with just a close very well educated friend by my side (along with my mom and DH, and DD). I am unsure of what to do with prenatal care though.....as most of that stuff I can do myself.<br><br>
I am considering going back to the midwife who I had for my DD's birth at a hospital. She is a CNM..but I also feel like I still would have to fight with her on a million things...like for instance..I don't want to do the glucose test, don't want any US's, don't want to get GBS testing, etc. I feel like all of those things will be such a battle. I'm also considering using a homebirth midwife for prenatal care as well...as I think it would be easier..but then again, I just am unsure of money and I don't necessarily know if I want a midwife at my birth.<br><br>
I do, know, however, that this time, I am going to get exactly what I want, and no one is going to tell me otherwise. I am a lot stronger after DD's birth (and her birth was wonderful..even in a hospital)...but I am already up for a battle if anyone else would like to start one....man how unfortunate that we have to be ready to stand our ground when someone is trying to push us into doing things we don't want to do!
 

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Just curious, what's the reason for not wanting ultrasounds? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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The main reason I don't get routine ultrasounds is because they have never been shown to be safe. Yes, yes, I know that millions of women have had them, etc. That doesn't change the fact that we just don't have the data to show that they are safe. The data that I have seen from in vitro studies as well as in vivo non-human studies is not promising.<br><br>
Also, I always ask, what will this procedure/test offer me? What information will I get, and will that information have an impact on how I handle the pregnancy and the decisions I make? If there is not a very clear indication that an ultrasound would be helpful, I won't get one. Vaginal ultrasounds help to: 1. confirm that there is a viable baby inside; 2. confirm the number of babies; and 3. give a close estimation of gestational age. I won't get one because 1. if the baby isn't viable, knowing via ultrasound won't change the outcome and could lead to a hospital miscarriage instead of an unassisted miscarriage, which would be my preference if I was miscarrying; 2. knowing that there is more than one fetus in my womb wouldn't change how I am taking care of myself, and multiples can be diagnosed later with other methods; and 3. I chart my cycles and know when I conceived. So, no brainer for me, I won't get a vaginal ultrasound. I have a similar thought process for the 20-week routine ultrasound ... you get the idea.<br><br>
Not saying this is the "right" way or how anyone else should do it. YMMV.
 

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I agree w/ pirogi as well.<br>
We have had a few us throughout different pg's when I felt they were necessary.<br>
W/ ds1 w had the 20 wk scan bcs i didn't realize I could refuse and I hadn't switched to a hbmw yet.<br>
Then we had a bio-physical at 41 1/2 wks which gave me an extra week with out worry of induction.<br><br>
ds2 - no us<br><br>
ds3 - a vaginal us at 7 wks (I had had 2 previous m/c and hadn't slept in almost 3 days as I thought the baby was dead) When I saw the heart beat I went home and slept which I can guarantee was better for the baby than the stress I was putting myself through.<br><br>
dd1- no us<br><br>
I think that us can be great and very helpful but don't think it should just be a go to tool. Same for a lot of the tests which I pass on but if my mw felt they were warranted due to MY symptoms not bcs I am pg at such and such wks than I would consider.<br><br>
Remember that they used to x-ray a womans belly to see the baby.... that didn't turn out very well.<br><br>
I have a wonderful mw and she is really great about sharing her info and letting us make the decision, she never pushes us either way and that is one reason I really love her. I will be switching to another mw as mine will be out of town in jan<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> but she asked about testing on the phone and when I told her that we wouldn't need to be doing that she said... "great that makes things easier" so I think we are on the same page.<br><br>
It is my body and I have a lot better idea of what is going on w/ it than anyone else, I need providers in my life that will respect that. Our family practice doc is awesome about that. He said well you are there mother so you have a better idea of what is going w/ them than I do. Love him<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Pirogi</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15423626"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">The main reason I don't get routine ultrasounds is because they have never been shown to be safe. Yes, yes, I know that millions of women have had them, etc. That doesn't change the fact that we just don't have the data to show that they are safe. The data that I have seen from in vitro studies as well as in vivo non-human studies is not promising.<br><br>
Also, I always ask, what will this procedure/test offer me? What information will I get, and will that information have an impact on how I handle the pregnancy and the decisions I make? If there is not a very clear indication that an ultrasound would be helpful, I won't get one. Vaginal ultrasounds help to: 1. confirm that there is a viable baby inside; 2. confirm the number of babies; and 3. give a close estimation of gestational age. I won't get one because 1. if the baby isn't viable, knowing via ultrasound won't change the outcome and could lead to a hospital miscarriage instead of an unassisted miscarriage, which would be my preference if I was miscarrying; 2. knowing that there is more than one fetus in my womb wouldn't change how I am taking care of myself, and multiples can be diagnosed later with other methods; and 3. I chart my cycles and know when I conceived. So, no brainer for me, I won't get a vaginal ultrasound. I have a similar thought process for the 20-week routine ultrasound ... you get the idea.<br><br>
Not saying this is the "right" way or how anyone else should do it. YMMV.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"><br><br>
I got pregnant this Jan. which resulted in a loss. I had weeks and weeks of up and downs and spotting and not spotting, etc. I ended up doing a US around 6 weeks, which showed a heartbeat and healthy baby. Two weeks later, I had another US...and the baby had died. The US didn't help anything...and for all I know it could have harmed the baby (there really aren't any studies proving safety). If I were to get one around 7 weeks this time, I wouldn't believe the damn thing anyway!<br><br>
Also, you have to ask yourself what you would do with the information. If the US showed a baby that wouldn't live past birth, would you want to terminate...or would you want to just go ahead with the pregnancy? Not to mention the many many times where doctors think there are problems seen on a scan, and then once the baby is born, there are no problems whatsoever and it just caused unnecessary worry. It happened to my friend just a few days ago!! The doctor said he thought the baby had trisomy 18 and a heart defect and a cyst on the baby's brain....turns out...NOPE! None of the above. It caused her great emotional pain because the scan was incorrect.<br><br>
I, too, chart my cycle, so I know exactly when I conceived to date the pregnancy. If it is twins, I will find out simply by listening to the heartbeat just as I would normally.<br><br>
Anyway...those are pretty much my answers as well! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
My DH really really wants to know the sex of the baby (we did find out with DD)...so wish me luck convincing him we don't need a 20 week scan!!
 

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Thanks mamas! I've always liked getting them personally, just because I like seeing the little bean lol, but I totally appreciate you guys explaining your reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
My thing with ultrasounds...<br><br>
I actually wanted to get one with my first pregnancy just to have the picture, and a good friend of mine said,<br><br>
"What part of shooting high frequency waves directly on and through your unborn child actually sounds like a good idea to you?"<br><br>
I felt he had a pretty valid point. Then I saw some stuff on studies linking ultrasounds to childhood leukemia. The caveat to this is I hate medical studies. They're mostly full of crap. My undergrad is in statistical analysis and I tell everybody the only thing I learned in college was not to trust any numbers people tell you.<br><br>
I read a study on the British Medical Journal website refuting this. 25 children in the study group got leukemia, 27 children in the control group got leukemia so it's not linked. They don't say though whether any of the children in the control group had ultrasounds or not. Frankly I would be surprised they would have a great deal of ease in locating 400 women who did not have a single ultrasound.<br><br>
I feel in my heart it's an unnecessary procedure, so why risk it? It's for each of us to decide on our own, though.<br><br>
I had a lengthy discussion with the midwife about it this afternoon. She says she absolutely supports me maintaining complete control over my prenatal care. That being said, if I'm spotting a bunch and I still refuse an ultrasound, she's going to tell me I'm stupid. I think this is totally fair.<br><br>
If I had a medical reason for having an ultrasound that outweighed what I consider the potential risks of the procedure (like being concerned the placenta is over the cervix), I would be willing to have one done.<br><br>
Yup, thank goodness, I think the midwife is way better than her receptionist!!! YA!!!
 

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to answer the title question - yes i believe you should have control over your prenatal care. and for me, that means going with the vast majority of tests and other recommendations. not because i'm blindly going with what they tell me to do (i'm just not like that) but because research and experience tell me that most of them are worth it to me. i will be having the test for gestational diabetes, for example, because i'm aboriginal, obese, and have type 2 diabetes all over both sides of my family. the odds aren't in my favour, and the sooner it can be detected if it happens, the healthier baby and i will be. i will be having the tests relevant to down syndrome (not amniocentesis though because of the m/c risk) because i'm 35 and it's something i'd rather be prepared for ahead of time if it happens. stuff like that. it's always an informed decision and i know i have the right to decline if i want, which i value.
 
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