A board for members whose cesarean section experience was not a positive one.
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My first c/s was for "failure to progress", my 2nd for "big baby". I thought I was "okay" with having surgical births...until my 2nd son was born and about 3 months old. I suddenly felt ripped apart, not necessarily violated, but broken. I don't feel that I am the woman I should be, I feel less than a woman. I feel inadequate. Ben (2nd born) is 1 years old and it took months and months for me to even be comfortable having intercourse again. I was THAT afraid of getting pregnant again (regardless of BC methods used), the act was painful and I thought I could live the rest of my life and never do it again! During that time I also began having panic attacks. I had a dream about my 2nd delivery a few weeks ago and woke up with the most horrible chest pain, I couldn't breathe, I couldn't really think...I was in so much pain I couldn't even get my husband's attention.
My story - 2nd cesarean (because I barely remember the first...)
I was wheeled into the operating room on a bed, dressed in the hospital gown and hair-net-like cap. IV in place...I was fine until I saw the room. I scanned the room quickly, taking everything in, the placement of the table, the 5 trays of instruments laid out on sterilized sheets, the anesthesiology equipment at the head of the table, the medical supply cabinet toward the left of the room, the large light that hung over head. I commented on how small the room was...if only they'd have one of those university ORs..they're huge, maybe I would have felt better. I was distracted by the conversation of the nurses. It was the day after Christmas and someone had their shoes stolen on Christmas Day. The anesthesiologist comes in...and over an hour later, I finally have the epidural in place (after 3 separate tries). I was SO scared, so completely scared during the placement. I clung to that nurse as though she was the very thing keeping me alive...my blood supply, so to speak. I shook with such force, I thought for sure I was going to fall off the table. I swore I was going to fall off the table, flat on my face. The nurse kept saying, "I've got you, I've got you." In my mind, I was thinking "Do you?" "Don't you want to know why the hell I'm in here..." After the epidural was in place and I was laid down, I shook and shook and shook. I felt as though I was seizing. I felt sick but nothing came up. My husband and doctor come in and I feel a bit better...The operation begins and I hear this odd murmuring noise...like someone talking to me while I'm under water. I thought, "OH MY GOD...GO AWAY..SHHHUUUUT UPPP!" So, I began having drug induced conversations with my OB. I was determined to keep him talking, so I wouldn't have to hear that strange noise. Not too much longer and I feel the pressure of Ben's birth. Ok. That's over...now I can die, right? I seriously thought something was wrong with me, what with all the weird noises and my blabbering on like an idiot. Ben was brought to my side by my husband and I cried...my baby was here and ooh he's so cute. But, darn it all if I don't get to hold him first...nope, not me...I'm on the operating table and to be honest, I'm not even sure where my arms/hands are at the moment. So DH and Ben go off on a vacation (anything out of that room was a vacation to me, at that point) while I get stitched up. I asked my OB for stitches, because staples suck. I started to feel a bit light headed (perhaps it was because I was given an extra dose of meds, because the epidural wore off during surgery (after birth). I fell asleep. I wanted so badly to "beat the drugs" and not surcome to any weird drug induced anything...yeah...good luck with that. My first photo with Ben I look drunk, high or ...both.
I am happy to say that Ben is a happy, healthy, breastfeeding 1 yr old. So, that I am thankful for. But I NEVER want to experience another cesarean as long as I live...so I'm planning my 3rd (whenever it occurs) delivery via VB2C!
I just don't understand where the panic attacks are coming from...what did I experience that is so panic stricken? The surgery went well...no complications ect. It's a surprise to me that my surgery was traumatic when it didn't feel like it was at the time.
This is what as made me decide to become a doula/midwife. I want to encourage/help women to avoid the fate I've been given. I hope with all my heart that my next delivery is a happy, healthy, safe VAGINAL birth.
Sorry for the rambling...If you've made it through...you deserve a cookie!
Hi, wow your story really touched me. I cant relate in terms of the panic attacks but I can relate to the not feeling like a woman. I always feel like I've missed out on something because I was not able to deliever vaginally. I feel almost a sense of loss because of it. I am now 29 weeks pregnant and was told right off the bat that this would also be a c section birth I remember also going into that OR room its horrible how they lay out all of the insturments that they are about to use on you! I think they need to be more sensitive to our feelings. Seeing that stuff can be tramatic in itself. I too remember kind of the first time I got to go see my daughter I was so druged that I couldnt even keep my eyes open Good luck with your future pregnancies I respect what you are doing. You are not alone in some of those feelings...as for the panic attacks give yourself a break it was a tramatic experience in itself and could trigger panic attacks. I'm starting to get nervous about this c section because now i know what to expect!