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I'm in a bit of a bind right now and trying hard to make a decision as to what to do. I'm 23 weeks pregnant with my third. I'd like to have a med free birth. Not because I'm uber crunchy, but largely, I just want to avoid all the hospital bells and whistles. My last birth was seriously aggrevating with constant exams, having to labour on my back, no one able to draw blood from one of my veins, so a million needle sticks and a bunch of student nurses who bothered me the whole time asking me inane questions (like if I was sure I was in labour....uh, you just checked, I'm 6cms, what the hell do you think!). I just want to labour and be left alone.<br><br>
So, I go to a midwife. My primary midwife is cold, not professional cold, just cold. She's indifferent and pretty much ignores me and schleps me off to her students. Last visit, I was there for over an hour and a half, and she maybe spent 20 minutes with me. She was 1/2 hour late and the rest of the time, I was with a second year student who really couldn't do much else than feel my abdomen and take my blood pressure. We spent the rest of the time, me telling her my beliefs on dog nutrition. When the primary finally came, she seemed irritated with her student, irritated with me because when she came in, I was giving my mom instructions over the phone to feed my kids. She didn't take her time and left me worried about the health of my baby. This visit, she greeted me, asked me how I was doing, ignored my answer and gave her student (this time more experienced) instructions on how to handle the visit and was off. She wasn't going to see me at all. She did come back afterwards, only because the student was concerned about me and that I was pretty glum, in fact I left the office in tears, which is the second time, both times have been with appointments with my primary.<br><br>
Anyhow, my secondary midwife is AMAZING. I love her, she's warm, caring, she takes her time, she explains everything about how she handles things, makes referrals to chiropractors, what different procedures are, etc. I've given birth twice, but it's like I'm a rank amateur with her wealth a knowledge, not that she makes me feel that way. I discussed my concerns, basically I can't switch to any midwife in that collective, but my secondary midwife has promised she'll be at the birth.<br><br>
Anyhow, after this past visit with my primary, I was pretty bummed. I leave her visits feeling like I have just been to the DMV that's how much of a number I feel like. I don't feel comfortable calling my primary with any questions, concerns, I half expect her to hand my birth off to a student!<br><br>
So at this point, I'm wondering if I should stay or go. My next appointment is with my secondary in a month. My chances of getting in with the other collective that covers my area are slim to none. I can go to my GP and ask for a referral to an OB I don't know and then possibly having to fight my way through a low/no intervention birth. I have major trust issues with my body, I'm a survivor of sexual abuse, a care provider doesn't have to jump through hurdles, but I like to feel like I'm respected and I can trust the person to keep me aware of what is going on and allow me to make the decisions.<br><br>
I'm trying to sort through what to do and I'm at a standstill. I feel like I'm made bad decisions through this pregnancy in breaking with my formula (my GP did shared care with another GP in our office for my last two-they weren't ideal births, but I've never left their office crying either) and going to a midwife. Anyhow, open to any and all opinions, suggestions what have you.
 

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Midwifery care can be such a profound, amazing experience it is so sad that you are having a negative experience. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> At least your secondary will be at the birth...I would discuss it with her further when you see her and tell her how much distress it is causing you and why. I think she should try to help you resolve it. You should not just accept being treated this way.
 

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I, too, would communicate how profound a connection you feel to midwife #2. Perhaps you can even secure her full partnership without addressing how over burdened & insensitive midwife #1 seems simply by stating that the connection you have with MW2 makes her - unequivocally - the right person to accompany you through the intimate work of labor. You know you, and who you connect with, and there's no reason you should have to explain or apologize for that. Good luck, mama!
 

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Those are big red flags!<br><br>
A midwife delivered my 21mo and she was a cold, snarky, disrespectful witch. She rolled her eyes at me, insulted my birth music, and went directly against my birth plan by pulling the cord instead of giving me 15 minutes to let my placenta come out on its own (she was in a hurry to get to someone else). The cord broke and left the placenta behind, causing 40 minutes of excruciating manual removal to be necessary. She was AWFUL. She didn't respect my body, didn't give me the time I needed, and didn't listen to my wishes - just like your primary MW!<br><br>
Just because someone is a midwife doesn't mean they are better than an OB. What really matters is a gentle, humble attitude that is respectful of the patient. You might have to interview 3 or 4 OBs to find the right one, or you might have to ask if your secondary midwife can become the primary for you... I don't know the solution. I just want to say trust your instincts. This primary MW has been disrespectful of you already, so don't expect anything different when you are in labor. Make sure you get with a care provider who will listen to you, be gentle with you when you are vulnerable, and do what you consent to/ask for and not just whatever seems expedient or best to them. Best wishes!
 

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So the midwife you like is in the collective you can't get in to? But she will attend your birth? I guess I'm a little confused. I had my first two children with a two person midwifery practice. there was oneI loved and one I just didn't like very much. I asked the one I loved if she would see me exclusively. I was able to just see her throughout my pregnancy for all the prenatals. However, she couldn't attend my birth due to a family emergency. She was tearfully apologetic, and the birth did go well with the other one. I went back to them for my second, and again saw just the one I liked. She was able to attend the birth that time.<br><br>
Like HaikuMommy said, all midwives are not cut from the same cloth. I have a dear friend who was having problems with her midwifery group but ignored her concerns. She ended up with a failure to progress induction, that led to a c-section. Her midwives were not around during her labor, did not respect her wishes, it wasn't a good situation. There certainly were OB's that would have been a better bet for a vaginal birth.<br><br>
What's the situation with getting into the other collective? What do you have to do to get in? Is is something you could try for and stay with the other midwives? Would your midwife you like be able attend you with someone other than the not-nice midwife? Best of luck!
 

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I believe you have the option to say "no" to students which make force your primary to be more attentive. Otherwise talk to your secondary or whomever does the majority of the organization and request that your secondary becomes your primary or some other solution. Don't be afraid to speak up, and it's easier to switch things around now rather than later on <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I am also 23 weeks pregnant and currently interviewing new midwives. I was with a birth center and the practice was HORRIBLE! I was naive enough going into all of this to think that a midwife is a midwife and they will all have the same model of care. But I was so wrong. The midwives at the BC don't answer my questions, rush me in and out, talk to me like a child, told me not to hire a doula (!), don't talk to me about nutrition or exercise at all, make me wait an ungodly amount of time and there are a couple that I, frankly, wouldn't let give me a pelvic exam because i am so uncomfortable with them. Then I interviewed a homebirth midwife this last week and was BLOWN AWAY! She is SO kind, supportive, and her words had the power to heal me. Before I met with her I had so much anxiety and depression regarding the BC that I was unable to think about anything else. I am now SO grateful that there are people out there that care and that provide such amazing services.<br>
This of course, will put a very large financial burden on us. But we have decided its 100% worth it!<br>
You can change midwives (and SHOULD!) and have faith that not all, or even a majority, are even remotely like your primary.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you for your responses.<br><br>
Where I am, midwives are highly in demand, so getting into another collective that services my area (there is only one other) is probably not going to happen.<br><br>
My collective has probably about 10 midwives and several students. The schedule is arranged by one midwife and they work in pairs. I've asked to have secondary switched to primary, and told it wasn't possible. I think they're really focused on trying to keep peace in their office, which kind of stinks when it trumps my comfort with my midwife.<br><br>
I have thought about revoking my permission for students, I am a bit afraid to cause trouble. Which is so unlike me, but around pregnancy and birth, I'm feeling extra vulnerable. I'm thinking of other things that somewhat set off some bells, where there was a lack of respect, and trust. I honestly don't know if this relationship can be salvaged.<br><br>
Part of me wants to stay and fight, another part of me just wants to go to an OB and do whatever. I guess I just built my hopes up too high for this birth with a midwife.
 

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No, I don't think your hopes are too high.<br>
Please don't be afraid to speak up and reiterate your feelings to the organizer and your secondary midwife.<br>
I know my very first midwife was not going to work out, thankfully we moved and I was able to change practices at 24 weeks and ended up with a wonderful one instead. I initially thought that midwives should be warm and friendly, but my first one was very cold and clinical, didn't seem to listen to anything I said and brushed off all of my (first timer) questions. I didn't know that I could request a different one so I stuck it out until we moved.<br><br>
After everything I went through with my first birth, I was much more confident and I have no problems expressing my wishes now. Generally I am pro-students, but for labor and birth I just don't want anyone extra around. My own feelings trump their learning experiences unfortunately.<br><br>
Please stick up for yourself in this situation, don't be afraid to cause ripples because your pregnancy and emotions are what is important, not their office dynamics <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Joyster, that SUCKS. Without knowing you or them, personally I think I'd recommend saying no to students. They will have other clients. My home birth midwife is a student, but I have a nearly 6 year friend relationship with her. Otherwise, I would be very uncomfortable with a student even under supervision.<br><br>
I generally don't suggest subterfuge, but is it possible to have a private conversation with your secondary and ensure that she will be at the birth and not the primary or a student? It sounded from one of your posts like that is the case. In that situation, you would have to tolerate some unpleasant prenatal visits, but the birth would be a good situation. Not that I think you ought to have to, but just thinking about myself, I'd rather deal with a crappy prenatal and good birth, you know?
 
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