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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I searched a bit on here a few weeks ago to find some info on not pushing during the 2nd stage of labor and did find one link here. I am looking at my second birth sometime in the next 3 weeks, and looking back at the first, my biggest issue was that for some reason I felt like I HAD to get her OUT ASAP once I'd dilated completely. This was something in my mind, not something any MW suggested. Problem was my contractions slowed way down (like 20 min apart), so at one point I remember the MW saying, "only push with contractions hun."


Yes, I'm that stupid, or at least I was in the moment.

So, has anyone actually NOT pushed during a full term labor? After reading that article, they make a good point that back in the ol' days people had babies while unconscious, so obviously this must be something our bodies can do w/o our ab's/minds contributions. Can a uterus push out a baby on it's own? Are our stretched out, separated, nearly worthless ab muscles really even doing anything during labor (I mean, seriously, somedays 9 months pregnant, I can hardly sit up on my own!!)?

Any thoughts? Sorry for the long post!

ETA: No, I don't mean abs involuntarily contracting - I mean us MEANING to use our abs to actually push the baby out.
 

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I never pushed in the traditional sense of the word (like you see on TV - knees to my chest, counting to 10 crap!)... my body did it all, really... I felt the "urge", like having to go to the bathroom really bad, and it just happened. I "pushed" 6 times with my first, 3 with 2 and 3, and 1 with #4 - and I think it's because I let my body take over and just relaxed. I didn't let any doc tell me when she thought I should push, didn't let anyone hold my legs in a weird position (I was sitting up for all of them)... so yeah, my body just did it.
 

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I didn't push at all with my last baby, I tried to hold back as much as I could so that I wouldn't tear. My body pushed entirely on it's own and she was born in three painless involuntary pushes.
 

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hm, I'm not aware of the abdominal muscles contracting involuntarily. Whereas, of course the uterus ONLY contracts involuntarily (We can't make it contract the way we can with our biceps or abs.) So, I'm thinking - YES - abs contribute to birthing, but they dont' do so without our acting.
So - if the mama does NOT take action to push & flex the abs - yes, I do think the uterus can do it on it's own. Of course, remember, back in the days of twilight sleep, babies were pulled out with forceps.


As for me personally, I was planning a hospital birth & labor went much faster than expected! Hospial was 20 min away, so by the time we got out the door at home, then into a room, I'd be resisting the urge to push for nearly 40 min!!! After my MW checked me to confirm I was 10 cm (my request), I got onto hands & knees & pushed with the next ctrx. With that first push, my water broke! Whereas it had stayed in tact during my 40-min of trying to fight the urge to push.

So that tells me that my actions of pushing moved DS down enough to break the bag, whereas the uterus alone hadn't done so previously. So I kinda doubt it would have worked if I wasn't involved. OK, maybe after like 15-20 hours or so... Instead, I pushed for about 40 min.
 

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With #1 I didn't push much. I had been sitting on a birth ball in a low squat, then I stood up and DS dropped a lot. The m/w was going to check me to see how far along I was and DS was crowning (never having pushed). I pushed between ctx for about 15 minutes and he was out (pushing between ctx can help minimize tearing). I never had the urge to push and I now wonder if I waited a bit if he would have been born without any pushing at all. I hope it is this easy with #2.
 

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:

I, too, pushed too much with DS. He was posterior and I just wanted him O-U-T!
He went from barely crowning to totally born in one big push at the end. It was quite an entrance, my midwife wasn't expecting it at all
: lol. She had to leap into the pool to catch him.
But, as you can imagine, this wasn't great for my perineum
Lots of stitches.
This time, I want to wait until I really feel the urge to push, and then do it gently, letting my body do the work. I think I'll talk to my midwives about this, but I'm definitely keeping an eye on this thread too.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by BekahMomToOliver View Post

He went from barely crowning to totally born in one big push at the end. It was quite an entrance, my midwife wasn't expecting it at all
:
The same thing happened to me! And my baby was posterior, but we didn't know it. I pushed, consciously, for 4.5 hours. Too long. I hadn't really been feeling pushy, but the MW suggested that I push with my contractions rather than "breathing them away," which is what I had been doing.

Next time I want to push less!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MegBoz View Post
As for me personally, I was planning a hospital birth & labor went much faster than expected! Hospial was 20 min away, so by the time we got out the door at home, then into a room, I'd be resisting the urge to push for nearly 40 min!!!
Wow, you're the only other person I've "known" who has also resisted the urge to push. Like you, my labor went a lot faster and easier than expected, so I was ready to push in the car. I held our daughter inside for 60 minutes before I was finally given permission to push.

Then things went south. Unlike you, I was told to push in the lithotomy position (instead of standing, like I wanted), and then the midwife cut an episiotomy. DD was born after 30 minutes of coached pushing.

Everyone else I've "talked" to has said, "There's NO WAY I could have NOT pushed!!!". So, I'd say you and I must be pretty unique in that way.
 

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my second time was all uterus. I "breathed the baby down" which basically means "try and manage the pain while baby shoots out of you like a cannon" in my experience, but it was the second baby and was only 7 minutes of uh, "pushing" (or more accurately not pushing
)
 

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I didn't push with dd. I had just arrived at the birth center and was measuring at 6 centimeters. I got into the tub and about 20 minutes later, I said, "I have to poop" and flipped on my hands and knees to get out and just couldn't budge. My body just started pushing. I had no control over it but it wasn't even an urge to push that I just HAD to do. It was more like i was vomiting her out! It was the same kind of sensation where you throw up, your body rest, and then again without any control, you vomit again. That's how it was. She was born in 4 minutes.
 

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I shouldn't have pushed. I didn't need to. I went from 4cm, being told I had hours left to baby out in 15 minutes as it was.

He was moving down in a huge way (obviously). I went and sat on the toilet and realized his head was *right* there, my whole finger length would not go into me to feel him. He moved down further as I made it back out of the bathroom (being dragged mind you)... Once I was sitting on the bed I pushed because I started feeling watched and panicy and it was pretty much a terrible thing for me to do because I didn't need to, he was doing the work totally and all I did was make myself dizzy.

So yeah, 15 minutes from 4cm to baby out... Oh... and no tears either. The OB (who listened to my request and didn't touch me... just stood at the end of the bed watching as I surprised the hell out of everyone and delivered so fast and caught my own baby) was surprised at the intact perineum, and I was grateful for it
 

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I pushed with Dd2 until she was crowning. I could feel her moving down. Once I felt the slightest burning sensation I stopped pushing and just breathed her out. I have no idea if it was my abs or my uterus that was getting her out during the contractions but she came out slowly. I thought it would be much harder to stop pushing but once she was crowning it was pretty easy to stop. I only had a skid mark.
 

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I pushed for about an hour and a half without getting anywhere, then rested for about an hour- I had a distended bladder because my nurses were idiots and forgot to drain it and it was blocking the descent. Once they drained THREE CUPS of urine out of my bladder, I pushed her out in twenty minutes!

I did have an epidural, but I definitely felt every contraction, since my epidural didn't do spit for my back pain or back labor. That probably helped me not push, but it certainly wasn't easy! I was just so tired that I wasn't pushing effectively, and it wasn't going anywhere because of the bladder issue.

My midwife did counter-pressure through the contractions, and counted through them. My husband held my hands and pumped them, like one-two-SQUEEZE-one-two-SQUEEZE and that helped me get through it.

~Rose
 

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Pushing was involuntary for me, like breathing. I way waaaay off in laborland, and all of a sudden I realized I was bearing down with every contraction. It wasn't something I was doing deliberately, it was just happening. Then I sort of started working with it and taking control of the pushing a little bit. It actually felt pretty good.
 

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i dont think there's a single muscle in my body that didn't get used for pushing. It was all hands on deck
I could barely lift a dinner plate the next day, my muscles were so tired!
 

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I had an OVERWHELMING urge to push with my first.

The description everyone uses (including me) is that it is like "Throwing down." When you need to barf, everything convulses and forces your stomach contents UP. Some people can resist that and hold back the barf. But sometimes you just can't, when the urge gets too big and too strong, and holding it back ffeels awful. Well, the urge to push was big waves of that, only focused on throwing my uterine contents (ie baby) down. I could have resisted it, but not *really*. The wave would start and I just had to bear down.

And the bearing down most definitely involved my abs. My first was posterior for awhile and I had to push for 45 minutes (and I HAD TO push for 45 minutes, I was not coached), and my abs felt like I had done a few hundred crunches the next day.

With #2, who was better positioned, I never really consciousl pushed, although in retrospect I realized that part of what I was doing with every contraction near the end was holding myself perfectly upright on my knees and bearing down. She just got ejected.

But the abdominal involvement with #1 was certainly not some kind of unnatural coached-pushing thing. I hung out on knees and elbows until whoop - there was that urge. He just needed to get moved around a bit before he could splooge out.
 

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I gave birth to DC2 about 10 days ago. This time I only consciously pushed with the last contraction. The burning was so intense I needed her OUT! But up until that point, I didn't really want to push. It's the weirdest thing. I could feel my body pushing but I didn't have the mental desire to push. From the time I told my MW I could feel my body pushing to her being born was 40 minutes total so not too bad. With DS I was actively trying to push the whole time. It sucked. It took 90 minutes to get him out but his hand was on his head so that didn't help. I was much more tired and shaky afterward that time.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by UrbanCrunchyMama View Post
Wow, you're the only other person I've "known" who has also resisted the urge to push.

I confess I gave in a little bit a couple times! Ctrx were about 3 min apart, lasting 1 min each. At the apex of each ctrx, just for a few seconds, the urge to push was quite overwhelming & a few times I did give in for just a second or two (Felt like I couldn't control it!) But as I remember - that was only a few of the ctrx & it only lasted a few seconds.

Otherwise, yes, I really really WANTED to push, but I was able to resist. But, then again, I'm extremely stubborn!
hehe

Plus, I'd heard a couple horror stories about women getting the urge to push before being 10 cm, giving in & pushing - then having the cervix swell & everything down hill. So I had in my head that I needed to fight that urge until my MW did a VE & said the magic wordsk, "YUP! You're 10!" That fear probably contributed to my resistance.
(I've since learned that is rare, but still, it was one way I thought I'd "rather be safe than sorry.")
 
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