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  #1  
May 8th, 2008, 11:59 AM
~ Christine ~'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 5,223
Hi ladies. I'm new here. I'm Christine, married to DH Matthew and expecting our second living child in September.

I am considering attempting a natural childbirth and want to get some information. My desire to do this naturally stems mostly from my fear of needles in my spine and previous bad experiences with spinals/epidurals. I wish it was more noble than that, but it is what it is.

With DS Grant, I was 34w5d and my water broke at 2am. By the time I got to my doctor's and admitted into the hospital, they told me they had to induce. I was a first time mom, I knew nothing are PROM and I was scared, so I went ahead and had them induce me. They started pitocin at 12pm. I didn't feel any contractions until 3pm, and they weren't bad until 5pm. By 6:30pm, it was getting bad, and DH (who is a doctor) convinced me to get an epidural. All in all, the epidural was fine, but I don't really know if it worked that well, because I would still feel the contractions, they just didn't hurt, and I could definitely feel when they did my episotomy (sp?), but again it didn't hurt. Grant was born just after 8pm. The docs told me that as soon as I could move my legs, I could go to the NICU to see Grant. Well, let's just say, DH picked me up, put me in the wheel chair and took me to the NICU for 3 minutes before the shift change at 10 because I still couldn't feel my legs.

With Luke, our angel, I had a cerclage placed at 13w. This is where the bulk of my negative experience comes from. My OB said they could either do a spinal or just knock me out for 20 min. I wanted them to knock me out. The idea of being awake on the operating table freaked me out. But the stupid nurse anes. wouldn't do it. I was pissed, and I didn't want the spinal. As she's sticking the freaking needle in my back, she said, "What are you afraid of... do you think I'm going to paralyze you?" Seriously.... Well, she ended up having to stick me twice, and did it a little too high, and it hurt for at least 3 weeks afterwards. My water broke with Luke at 14w and at 15w I went into labor with him. I didn't have an epi this time, but they kept offering it. I just felt like it never got bad enough that I needed it. I had two urges, and he came out in one push.

My husband is great, and he can be very supportive when he needs to be. He was wonderful when I was in labor both times. But, when I mentioned to him that I was thinking about NCB, his initial reaction was, if you want to suffer, go for it. We got in a fight two nights ago, and I might have been a little emotional, but I told him that I was wanting to do NCB and I was trying to figure out if he could be supportive enough to help me though it. I told him I was starting to worry that he wasn't. He said then I should have my mom in there. I told him I don't want my mom there - I want him. I really do think that he can do it, I just need to work with him to let him know what I will need from him. Since I've never been there before, I came here to ask for some help.

So.... to get to my questions - were your husbands very helpful during your NCB or did you rely on your midwife/doula? What did you need to hear while you were in labor? What did you need from your support person? Are there any good books out there to prepare a husband to support his wife during NCB?

Sorry for the long post.... Thanks in advance for any help.



Also, I will be giving birth in a hospital, as DH is a physician and we won't have to pay for anything from the hospital. But I have no problem standing up to the drs and nurses to get the birth I want.
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  #2  
May 8th, 2008, 12:28 PM
noworries
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Wecome and congratulations.
I'm Carrie, wife to Aaron and mommy to Eva, 4 months old.
I had my natural birth in a hospital and I originally looked into NCB because of horror stories I had heard about epidurals also. I didn't have a doula or midwife, but my husband and nurse were awesome. I really didn't need to hear anything specific during the birth, I used hypnobirthing and it worked great for me. Just learning to completely relax and visualize. And it wasn't painful, childbirth does not have to be painful (well, except the crowning but that is over pretty quickly).
As far as preparing your husband, I don't have any books to advise (I know others will though) but he took the hypnobirthing class with me and he is the type of person that gets as much knowledge and prepares himself as much as possible for something. Also, he was always supportive from the beginning so I didn't really have to worry about this.

How far along are you?
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  #3  
May 8th, 2008, 12:38 PM
~ Christine ~'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 5,223
Thanks Carrie.

I'm 22w, but with prior experience, we are expecting this one to come early, hopefully not till mid August.
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  #4  
May 8th, 2008, 01:19 PM
moon~maiden's Avatar Cheryl~ birth truster
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: south eastern Mass
Posts: 13,088
Hi, welcome!!

My first advice to you is to rent the business of being born and watch it with DH. That may be enough to open his mind a little bit. It's an outstanding movie.

My husband has a medical degree, doesn't practice, but he is an MD. he told me I should get a C-Section when we got pregnant. Once I started doing research I really wanted a home birth, but he wasn't crazy about the idea. I was going to an OB office with NINE different OB's and I hated that. They didn't know me, remember things about me, always one hand on the door, made me feel bad for being excited about the little things. I switched to a midwife office, and we got a doula. He was in the mindset of "in case something goes wrong we need a surgeon on hand" kind of thing. We took our birthing classes through out Doula in her home with one other couple, it was awesome. Slowly he started to change his mind. He read a ton on birth and started to realize it wasn't a medical emergency, it was birth.

I went to a small hospital that was more natural birth friendly. My nurse was terrible, thank goodness we had our doula. I had back labor so I was pretty closed into myself and didn't interact much with anyone, but having my doula there was a godsend. She knew to lean on my lower back to help control the muscle spasms. Also the education I got through her classes and the reading I did helped me not panic when a few little things happened, like when the stupid nurse couldn't find the baby's heartbeat for a minute. I pushed for 3 long hours, and no one once made me feel like we needed a C-section because things weren't going fast enough. That was great. The midwife let DH catch the baby, he was the first human to ever touch her.

On the way home from the hospital, DH told me "next time we'll have that home birth you want" and instantly became a natural birth and home birth advocate. Then we saw the business of being born and that changed him even more. It can be done!

My suggestion is to start with the movie, and get the book "the thinking woman's guide to a better birth", start reading that. Start meeting with Doulas. I know some people think getting a doula is somehow implying that DH isn't going to be enough support, I don't see it that way. Men often feel helpless in that situation, and also, it's their birth too. The Doula acts as a buffer between you and the hospital staff. You just don't know what you are going to get. ifyou can find a doula that does classes then I recommend that over hospital classes.

It can be done, try not to push him too hard. The more you educate yourself, the better you are. My husband is SO PROUD of me for my natural birth.
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  #5  
May 8th, 2008, 07:41 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: TEXAS
Posts: 6,494
I just wanted to say welcome. This will be my first natural childbirth so Im not really sure how its going to go. I will be relying on myself mostly. My DH is supportive but didnt even want to read one article on the internet as to how to help me cope during labor.... No help there . My midwife is really nice but I just met her last week... Its never to late to switch LOL. I think natural childbirth has to come from within yourself. Unless there is an emergency I will not be using any meds even though they are available. That decision comes soley from me. No matter how much support you have if you dont feel confident yourself it wont happen. Hugs momma. I think you are doing a great thing.
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Momma to Brynn 10/2/2002 (midwife at hospital)
Emme 5/26/2008 (midwife at freestanding birth center)
Pierce 11/28/2009 (midwife at freestanding birth center)
and Surprise Baby #4 due 11/13/2011
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  #6  
May 9th, 2008, 08:48 AM
Husher's Avatar B & E complete me.
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NH
Posts: 10,622
Welcome to the board Christine! I'm Cindy, mommy to Bryson, 6 months. It can be really hard when you feel like you won't or don't have the support that you need so I definitely recommend showing your DH how important this is to you. I too recommend seeing "The Business of Being Born". I have also heard that the Bradley Method has a great section devoted to helping the partner be a good support system for a laboring mom, so maybe you could check that out as well.

When we found out I was pregnant I immediately knew I wanted to try for a NCB and told my DH so. He was just game for whatever I wanted at first. Then as we did more research he became so excited about it and really got into helping me relax and recorded tons of scripts onto the computer for the big day and really practiced relaxation techniques with me as much as I wanted. He was amazing during labor and even cried when I was in so much pain because of the pitocin that we were pretty much bullied into.

I think it's super important to get him on board with you and if he doesn't come around then I would definitely hire a doula or ask your mom or a friend to be there. You need someone who will support you fully and help you to stay on track. You can do it and I hope your DH comes around.

I hope to see more of you over the coming months of your pregnancy! I'm so sorry for your loss with your second son. *HUGS*
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  #7  
May 9th, 2008, 09:02 AM
~ Christine ~'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 5,223
Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll definitely follow up on those.

Quote:
My DH is supportive but didnt even want to read one article on the internet as to how to help me cope during labor.... No help there .[/b]
That's probably something my husband would do!!

Although, I tend to underestimate him in these kinds of situations. Because of the loss of my second son, and Grant being born early, I'm currently on 17P shots, which I'll get once weekly from 16-36 weeks. I can handle pain, but I hate needles. I take that back - I hate shots. I can do blood tests fine. Well, since DH is a DR and it would cost us $20 for each shot at my OB's, he's been giving me the shots. He knows how much I hate shots, and I thought for sure he'd just tell me to suck it up and get over it. Boy was I wrong... he was so sweet last time he gave it to me. He kept kissing me, to make sure I was doing ok. I know he has it in him to be exactly what I need, but I don't know how to get it out of him.....

Cindy - you mentioned hiring a doula. This is something else I've considered. I really just want it to be DH and I in the delivery room. I love my mom and we are very close, but this baby was created by DH and I and it will be brought into the world only with DH and I in the room, if at all possible. A doula I might not mind. What do doulas do? How do you even go about getting a doula?
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  #8  
May 9th, 2008, 10:07 AM
Husher's Avatar B & E complete me.
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NH
Posts: 10,622
Quote:
Cindy - you mentioned hiring a doula. This is something else I've considered. I really just want it to be DH and I in the delivery room. I love my mom and we are very close, but this baby was created by DH and I and it will be brought into the world only with DH and I in the room, if at all possible. A doula I might not mind. What do doulas do? How do you even go about getting a doula?[/b]
There is a great site for help with finding a doula and seeing exactly what they do. It is:

http://www.dona.org/mothers/how_to_hire_a_doula.php

I hope that helps! Let me know if I can help in any other way.
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