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<p>Well, sort of. My dad is an OB/GYN and I had posted a while back how my parents aren't really supportive of my HB plans. My mom is not making an issue of it but tells me I'm "brave" and asks me why I wouldn't rather be in a hospital just in case? And she also doesn't let an opportunity go by when I bring up natural birth without adding in her two cents such as "let me know how you feel about natural birth when it's all over!" and "ha! good luck!". However, my dad was the real issue, considering his profession, and because he had point-blank told me that homebirth was "nuts!" in the past (back when I was barely pregnant and was talking with him about care providers).</p>
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<p>Anyway, I was on the fence about what to say to him, or if to say anything at all, b/c I figured I wouldn't like the reaction and I didn't really want negativity in my life right now with regards to my birth. But I decided that it was weirder if I just avoided the topic completely, and I had started to feel like I was shutting him out, and I definitely didn't want to do that. So yesterday I went to my parents, and the whole afternoon I was wondering how to bring up the topic, so finally when it was just the two of us I brought up my plans for an "as-natural-as-you-can-get" birth (I really didn't say the word "homebirth" b/c I wanted to see his reaction first). And, the response I got from him was "that is an excellent plan, I hope it works out for you". But it didn't sound sincere at all. And then he said, "There are things in life you can't control".</p>
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<p>Well that is the last thing I said about that.</p>
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<p>So I came to the conclusion that I don't really need my parents' support and that I guess I'm happier not including them in my hopes and wishes for this birth. I have many reasons for wanting to do things this way and I don't think it's crazy or irresponsible at all. I've made attempts to open up to them about it and haven't really received positive feedback at all, so I'm done. At least I know I tried.</p>
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<p>I'm excited for this birth- it is my first baby. What still eats at me though is the valid possibility that I need to transfer or, god forbid, something goes wrong during my birth...and then I'll get the "I-told-you-so's" from my parents.  I know it is petty and that my birth shouldn't be a competition, but I can't help but have this strong desire to prove everyone wrong. Yet, I don't want these feelings to affect my birth. Is there any way I can let go of this in the next 6 weeks before my due date?</p>
 

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<p>Hey mama, good luck! I have a friend with the same dilemma as you. But it will all work out in the end. You'll have a happy healthy baby at home and it will bring your dad around. My dad is not an OBGYN, but when I am talking to people about the birth who I know are pretty well set against home birth, I've taken to saying, "Our plan is for a home birth. If we end up in the hospital, that's ok too, but we just don't want to start there." I like to bring up how pregnancy is not a disease, so why go to the hospital until it becomes necessary?</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>LHcj2008</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1279598/finally-told-my-dad#post_16047987"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br>
What still eats at me though is the valid possibility that I need to transfer or, god forbid, something goes wrong during my birth...and then I'll get the "I-told-you-so's" from my parents.  I know it is petty and that my birth shouldn't be a competition, but I can't help but have this strong desire to prove everyone wrong.</div>
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That's exactly why I'm not telling my Mom or MIL. Cuz I KNOW - at least MIL would say, "Oh THANK GOD YOU TRANSFERRED! Oh what would have happened if you didn't make it to the hospital in time?!" and either explicitly stated or implied, "I can't believe you even tried to stay home in the first place."</p>
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<p>Whereas we all know that a transfer that turns out well is how it's <span style="text-decoration:underline;"><em>supposed to work</em></span> - like when a general practicioner transfers your care to an oncologist. That's not a "failure" on the part of the GP - it's an escalation of care to a specialist when and <span style="text-decoration:underline;"><em>as needed</em></span>. But, ya know, whatever. Transferring would be stressful enough & I don't need that added grief! Easier to not tell in advance. So if I birth in the hospital, that will be where I planned to birth all along, as far as they know. (I had DS in the same hospital, so there shouldn't be any suspicions.)</p>
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<p>If something went wrong at home, I might be tempted even to lie & say I'd never had HB plans in the first place, labor just went so fast & I didn't even <span style="text-decoration:underline;">realize</span> I was in labor & all of the sudden, baby was there! (Labor with DS went fast, so this is honestly feasible!) Again, your plans with regards to healthcare providers for your birth are <em>personal</em> - I see no problem in not letting people in on it who you know won't be supportive. It just makes sense to me. Why subject yourself to added stress?</p>
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<p>As far as "proving them wrong" - ha - I've seen many mamas say that that helped them get through a natural birth (regardless of facility.) I will say it motivated me a bit too - BUT - now that I've done it once, I don't feel so much that I have to "prove" myself, so there is a lot less pressure. I'm glad because I'd hate to feel like I "failed" if I transferred or got an epidural - sometimes an epidural is the best choice and sometimes it can save you from a CS in some cases. So I'm glad that this time around I feel more accepting of the fact that I am not in 100% control & I'll accept interventions my care team (including my very, very wise DH) collectively recommend.</p>
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<p>I guess my point is - I can see how the desire to 'prove them wrong' can be powerful motivation & thus helpful, but it also worries me a bit - I think it could be destructive & I think it's risky in that it might make you feel more like a "failure" if you end up transferring & that's a bad thing, IMO. But only you can know if it IS beneficial for you & if that benefit outweighs any potential risk.</p>
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<p>As for "letting go" of it in the next 6 weeks... that's an awfully lofty goal! I wouldn't put too much pressure on yourself. To be honest, I don't really think it's realistic to have NO anxieties & stresses about an upcoming birth anyway! So I wouldn't beat yourself up over having concerns.</p>
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<p>I feel like I'm not articulating that concept properly so I'll give you an example. I had been convinced I'd go into labor by 38/39 weeks - so when I passed 40W & wasn't even having any BH ctrx, I was PISSED OFF - I was really worried I'd never go into labor & have to be induced, I was of course worried about that (as a first time Mom, we all know induction has a very VERY high risk of leading to CS), didn't think I'd be able to forgo an epi with the pit-induced ctrx, horrified at the prospect of not being able to do most - or ANY - of my laboring at home, etc. I felt betrayed by my body.</p>
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<p>Then I felt bad for feeling bad. I had my doula saying, "try to relax. Stress can inhibit the onset of labor."</p>
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<p>Oh, awesome! Now it's MY FAULT that I"m not in labor?!?! - and it's MY FAULT I'm not in labor only because I WANT to be in labor so badly? <span><img alt="splat.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/splat.gif"></span>Now I'm feeling bad about the fact that I feel bad. Know what I mean? Who needs that EXTRA stress?</p>
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<p>I was so worked up, I went to see a psychologist. She said, "Is there any way you can be more gentle with yourself?" For some reason, that phrasing really resonated with me - I GOT IT, I knew what she meant. I'm having trouble letting go of my frustration at not being in labor, but at least I can not beat myself up over the fact that I'm frustrated. That helped me-- just be accepting of the fact that you have some anxieties without beating yourself up for having them.</p>
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>porttack</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1279598/finally-told-my-dad#post_16049327"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a>I've taken to saying, "Our plan is for a home birth. If we end up in the hospital, that's ok too, but we just don't want to start there." I like to bring up how pregnancy is not a disease, so why go to the hospital until it becomes necessary?</div>
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<p>I like that too. I've read here on MDC some say they "hope" for an HB. Others have corrected them saying language is powerful & you should say you "ARE" having an HB. Um, no I disagree. You can't guarantee it. I like to say I'm "PLANNING" an HB! I think that's the best - because that <span style="text-decoration:underline;"><em>is</em></span> my plan, but my "plan" also includes transferring to the hospital for a variety of reasons (premature labor, or if, in-labor, my HB MW thinks it is necessary, or labor drags on well past 24 hours & I'm so exhausted I need an epidural to rest so I can go on to birth vaginally, etc. etc.) That is all part of my "plan" as well. <span><img alt="thumb.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/thumb.gif"></span></p>
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<p>I also feel like having the attitude that, "I WILL transfer if a legit reason arises, and that is possible," means I'm more likely to be accepting of a transfer rather than devastated by it. I'm sure it will still be upsetting, but I feel like I could handle it much better with this viewpoint.</p>
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<p>Whereas with DS, I was insanely determined not to get an epidural! I really think I would have been crushed if I had ended up with an epidural with DS - I didn't have it in the realm of possibility in my mind then. But I think my view is much healthier now.</p>
 

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<p>Why do you think your father, an OB/GYN, is less than supportive?  I doubt that he actively wishes you harm?</p>
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<p>Might be that he's seen a lot, and some of those things have been things going badly wrong?  I suspect he is worried about your safety. </p>
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<p>I know that I wish the best for my children, but won't offer unconditional support of things that I know are harmful.</p>
 

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<p>I'm sorry you're having a rough time with this.  I'm not sure how to tell you to let go of it, but I can tell you that in a way, I am so happy my mother-in-law had doubts about my homebirth.  Even if it had gone wrong, I really feel it helped me to become independent and fully an adult, which is exactly what you want before you have kids.  You want to get to a place with yourself where you are comfortable with responsibility and know the choices you have to make are *your* choices.</p>
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<p>If you did have to transfer (I'm talking about most cases here, not a major complication, which is rare anyway!), would you have to tell him that you didn't start out in the hospital?  I would think that with normal grandparents that come in several hours after the birth, they probably hardly get to meet the doctor and hear the birth story.  That might be harder with your dad, though, since I imagine he'd feel very comfortable chatting with the doctor.  Just a thought.  I've had 2 homebirths without a transfer, so I really have no idea if it would be possible or not to keep it a secret after the fact!</p>
 

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<p>I just want to give you kudos for sticking to your guns about the kind of birth you want.  I had my son at home and eventually stopped telling people I was planning on a homebirth because of all the negative comments people made. I can only imagine how much harder it is when you family is not supportive.  We "turned" both of our parents by showing them "The business of being born" and having them read the book "Pushed".  I posted notes to my self with positve affirmations all over my house with my first.  Maybe try doing little things like that to keep attitude as positive as possible.  Best wishes!! You'll do great!</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>fuzzylogic</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1279598/finally-told-my-dad#post_16059876"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-right:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-bottom:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>I know that I wish the best for my children, but won't offer unconditional support of things that I know are harmful.</p>
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<br><br><p> This would be a good point if she was talking about something that was harmful, but she's not...she's talking about homebirth.</p>
 

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<p>I can relate a little bit. My father isn't an OB, but he was a preemie baby, born in the 1940s. And his ex-wife, my mother, had a traumatic first birth that ended in a c-section, followed by two more c-sections.</p>
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<p>Because of his experience in life, he believes birth is precarious at best, and almost always potentially dangerous. Surprise surprise, he was against my choice for a homebirth.</p>
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<p>I would guess that as a person who oversees birth in a hospital, your dad has probably seen births that have either needed to be in the hospital, meaning they are those rare cases when an emergency or complication necessitates hospital care, or he's seen birth managed into emergencies (read about the cycle that Pitocin induces that often leads directly to fetal distress and a c-section). If you get an opportunity and feel up to it, you might consider asking him how many natural, uncomplicated childbirths he has seen.</p>
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<p>It reminds me of something my midwife told me just yesterday. Historically, we know from Hippocrates and Galen (Greek and Roman respecitively) that birth was something early physicians stayed out of. It was considered an event best attended by wise women, or early midwives. The men were only called upon when something went wrong, and at that point, a physician would be needed mostly because he owned fine cutting tools that midwives did not carry. Some anthropologists today argue that our vision of birth as something to be saved from or protected against started there. With physicians only seeing the rare worst cases, and never getting a glimpse of the other 90% of the cases when things went swimmingly.</p>
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<p>My point is, I can see where he's coming from, even if his reaction is less than supportive and probably feels really disappointing.</p>
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<p>Hang in there. You are making an informed decision about what is best for you and your family, and you are not alone. So many women are opting for homebirths because they believe in their bodies, and they know that the evidence shows it's as safe if not safer in the case of a low-risk birth. Your Dad is obviously very educated, but that doesn't mean his experience has done anything other than bias him. Listen to your heart. Keep sticking to your guns. Hugs to you, mama.</p>
 

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<p>OP, I think your dad sounds like OBs I have talked to in the past.  I had the "roll the eyes at the idea of a birth plan" response before because of the doctors' expectations that natural births will regularly be derailed.</p>
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<p>It sounds like you are well on your way to detaching from your worries about what your parents think.  You should be focusing on feeling ready to give birth and visualizing that in a positive way.  You will accept the birth experience that comes to you.  Right now you don't know what shape it will take so try not to worry.  It is in God's hands, and if it goes well (as it most likely will) you will be at ease with your parents.  If things become difficult, your midwife will help you take the right steps to do whatever needs done.  You will be much more concerned about your baby than your parents at that time.  You can think about how it affects your relationship with your parents afterward.  </p>
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<p>Every woman who choose homebirth faces the same possibility of judgement from anyone mainstream if her homebirth doesn't go as planned and she transfers.  Yours is a little more intense since your father specializes in the field but we all face it.  Still, most of us ultimately revel happily in our homebirth success while the judgers are left to either wonder if we are onto something or just think we were lucky fools "this time".</p>
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<p>Soon you will be looking back on your birth, and hopefully with the special satisfaction of a homebirth that was better than you could even imagine.  No woman who starts in the hospital has a chance of the unique experience of a positive homebirth.  At least you are giving yourself that chance. </p>
 

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<p>LHcj2008--</p>
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<p>No, you really don't need your parents support in this decision--and I think it is just great that you have recognized this.  Under the circumstances, your parents' life experiences simply do not allow them to have an objective view of pregnancy and birth.  In the end, they love you and want the best for you, and will be joyful only once they've seen a happy baby in a happy mothers' arms.  Forgive them for that, and just try not to broach the subject with them, try not to take your mothers' offhand negative comments to heart.  Having a homebirth in this culture, unfortunately, requires a high degree of self-responsibility and grit...but then, parenting takes that very same high degree of self-responsibility and grit!  Take this as 'early training' in knowing your own mind, and taking action that YOU believe from available info is the best for you/baby/family.</p>
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<p>There will always be those who suffer losses at birth; the sad fact is that some of those losses are caused or at least made worse by a provider's ingorance, personal stress, lack of ethics, whatever--this is part of the human condition.  An unfortunate but nearly inevitable side-effect of a loss or serious problem in health care choices is that survivors often blame themselves, someone else, or a method of care, irrationally.  Fuzzy logic and those who have had a homebirth loss, or have a friend who did, demonstrate this very clearly...at least for a time during the grieving process, the terrible pain of loss overrides the ability to make truly reasoned assessments of available information.  We can forgive them for this, knowing that their deep pain, or sympathy for others' pain, is simply clouding their thinking about the issues...we can listen to their stories, and take their stories as worthy grist for the mill, and wish them healing of their hearts from the bottom of our own hearts--without taking their positions on this topic too seriously. </p>
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<p>The only hard fact about birth is that it most often goes just right...and there are times it does not.  It is the same hard fact of life itself: we do not control it and stuff happens desptie our best efforts.  This is true in the hospital or birth center or homebirth; in every place, with every kind of provider, we are always dealing with providers who are merely human; we always have the risk that the provider or the forms of care given will actually lead to harm rather than health--along with the risk that in the best of circumstances, rare complications can occur completely by surprise. </p>
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<p>Every homebirth family must recognize this, must deal with the fear and move through it, to have the 'best possible outcome'.  That 'best outcome' means being able to live with all of one's decisions, come what may, knowing that NO ONE, ANYWHERE, or with ANY PROVIDER, gets any guarantees.  We do our best to make choices responsibly and with awareness; we prepare to live with what actually happens, knowing that we did indeed make the best choices we knew how to make in a life that offers no guarantees.  Have faith in yourself and in whatever you perceive as your Higher Power (even if that Power is only the evidence of millenia of birthing women/babies); trust yourself while keeping your eyes wide open and your intuition at the ready.</p>
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<p>The truth is that most often by far, birth goes great for mom and baby.  The truth also is that there are forms of harm that can occur only at home--if you/baby turn out to be among those who suffer a completely unexpected tragedy such as placental abruption, say--or a rare, fatal or damaging cord accident in which potentially, being in the hospital could have saved a life.  The good news is, a truly GIGANTIC body of evidence clearly shows that women and babies are far more likely to suffer harm and death under medical care in the hospital, as a direct or indirect result of 'routine maternity care' in many forms.  In looking at the big picture, and all of the facets--not just birth itself but the long term effects for mothers and babies--homebirth is in fact 'statistically safer' than birth in the hospital (given a skilled provider).  But, again, no place of birth, and no provider, can guarantee that YOU will have a happy healthy birth.  Statistics are just numbers...they are an aid to logical decisionmaking.  And in another way, statistics are not 'real' at all: we must all make decisions as calmly and rationally as possible, also thoroughly consulting our Inner Voice/intuition, knowing that what is 'real' for US, will only be revealed as time goes on.</p>
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<p>Congratulations on finding your courage to grow beyond the need for your parents' support!  You are on your way to growing the strength and responsibiity that is required in becoming a good-enough parent.  All the best on this journey--I'm excited with you! <span><img alt="nod.gif" height="15" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/nod.gif" width="15"></span></p>
 
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