We pride ourselves on having the friendliest
and most welcoming forums for moms and moms to be! Please take a moment
for free so you can be a part of our growing community of mothers.
If you have any problems registering please drop an email to email@example.com.
Our community is moderated by our moderation team so you won't see spam or offensive messages posted on our forums. Each of our message boards is hosted by JustMommies hosts, whose names are listed at the top each board. We hope you find our message boards friendly, helpful, and fun to be on!
Visiting from the October DDC board. I'm really trying to move forward with planning to have as natural a birth as is possible in a hospital setting. My goal is to avoid pain meds and (hopefully) an episiotamy. I will have the baby in the hospital as we really don't have too many birthing centers in our area, and with this being our first am hesitant to try a birth at home.
That said, if you had to give someone who will be a first time mom, going through the labor process three tips or words of advice, what would they be?
Looking for words of wisdom from been there, done that super moms!
The first thing I would say is trust your body!! The "pain" you may experience is not something wrong, but a great thing! Every pressure wave is opening your cervix to bring your little one closer to your arms.
Read!!! Practice!!! You want to mentally be in the zone with this.
I suggest for reading:
Ina May Gaskins "Guide to Childbirth"
Pam England and Rob Horowitz "Birthing from Within"
If you are able, a doula is a wonderful source of comfort, help, guidance and a rock for not only you, but also your spouse/SO/baby's father.
Lots of BTDT moms on this board too who can chime in with more words of encouragement.
And a side note.. do your research on an episiotamy, I don't believe they are really ever necessary. I say that from having a 9.6lb baby with a LARGE head. I tore some, but that was due to the method of pushing they were having me do (VERY bad idea)...had I pushed when and how my body wanted to I doubt the tearing would have been nearly what it was.
YES you would rather tear! an episiotomy is a guaranteed injury... a tear isn't guaranteed! Besides, I think of it this way: If you grab the edge of a tshirt and try to rip it, it will give but it will be tough to tear. If you put a little snip in it and THEN try to rip it, it will tear easily past the small rip.
Here's what we've done that really worked for us:
DH and I watched The Business of Being Born (streamable on netflix) years before getting pregnant... that seemed like an easy base point for information I wanted to later look into, like pitocin and the cycle of interventions & how one intervention leads to another and another.
We also practiced hypnobabies which really gave me a great outlook on pregnancy, trusting my body, and reminding myself that baby will come when he or she is ready, on his or her birthday and not when a doctor decides. People get so impatient and uncomfortable at the end, and even if hypnobabies hadn't helped me achieve a NCB at all, it was worth doing just for my mental state during pregnancy. It also gave my husband things to do to feel included and connected.
The Ina May book recommended above is also a big favorite...
You can totally have a natural childbirth in a hospital setting, you just have to be willing to say no or that you don't consent to a lot of things that OBs find routine. I find that women who go into it with a back up plan like "well I'll try to go natural but..." usually don't have the mindset to follow through. Its as if they've set themselves up mentally for failure. Commit! Its worth it!
1. Trust birth
2. Empower yourself with knowledge. Read. Take classes. Learn about birth. Learn your options. Learn your rights.
3. Know your care providers/hospital outcomes. There is a difference between a doctor who says they will support you in natural childbirth, and a doctor who actually has a high percentage of patients who succeed in natural childbirth. Get to know these things at the BEGINNING of your pregnancy and do not be afraid to switch care providers as much as you need to in order to find the right fit.
You have received some fabulous advice. I will second or third Ina May Gaskin's "Guide to Childbirth." I had a fabulous hospital birth with no interventions. Ask your provider LOTS AND LOTS of questions. If you need a list of questions to judge whether or not they are really NCB friendly let us know, we can come up with one. Better to have those conversations about interventions now when you have a clear head vs in labor when you may be cloudy. If you don't get answer SWITCH! I switched providers at 33 weeks!!!
I also fully believe in doulas hospitals can be scary overwhelming places particularly when you think it is a place where you may have to fight for your NCB. With the doula you can go in do what you need to do and allow the doula to handle some of the "door watching" and buffering the staff. Plus, doulas have seen lots of labors and may times they can say this is next lets talk about it. Or I realize this seems scary but it's totally normal.
I had a completely intervention free hospital birth. It can be done, let me know if you have questions.
I just had my first 12 days ago, gave birth in a hospital and had an amazing natural birth!
The things that I kept reminding myself was
1. know that this is what your body is created for. Remember that and let it empower you.
2. keep in mind that the pain you will feel is so temporary and is pain WITH REWARD!
3. breath. practice yoga, meditation and breathing techniques. I found that meditating and using deep pranyama breathing got me thru each contraction.
Like someone else said, do some research on episiodomy;s (sp?). I wasn't aware dr's even did them anymore. I would say no freakin way if my dr suggested it me! I didn't tear at all so it is def not necessary.
All I can add is:
1- this experience was a major test of patience. Going crazy- impatient is normal don't get caught up in interventions too soon.
2- educate yourself and your so. Classes are worthwhile to take!!!
3- l&d had pain...but it was good pain. It hurt to push, but at the same time it didn't- it was empowering being able to feel my daughter moving down and out with each push. Something I wish I felt with my first.
Ladies, thank you so much for your terrific advice. My DH and I went for our first childbirth class yesterday. It was nice that the class focused on natural childbirth, the stages of labor, breathing and relaxation exercises and coping with pain strategies. I was pleasantly surprised to hear at my hospital less than 10% of patients get episiotomies and their c-section rate is approxomately 20% (national average is hovering close to 50%). We also had a tour of the L&D, postpartum and nursery areas. It was so wonderful seeing the beautiful little babies who were new to the world. What little miracles!
Next week we go for our next class. This will discuss more relaxation and breathing (also continue the focus on partner/coach as support) and there will be discussion about c-sections, epidurals and of course some baby care basics.
My mind and heart are set on natural childbirth. I am woman, hear me roar!! Haha
1) Understand that a medicated/epidural birth does NOT equal a better birth vs a natural birth! My first baby I had a walking epi and pain meds and don't even remember holding her! My second I had a walking epi but NO pain meds and overall pretty happy with the birth. My third was all natural and by FAR the best birth experience of the three! They were all hospital births, btw. Next one (I hope!!!) will be a home birth.
2) Read as many natural birth stories as you can! This helped me tremendously. There websites galore with stories you can read!
3) Avoid talking to just any ol' person that comes along about your plan to have a NBC because you could be exposed to some toxic person's opinion and/or story that could emotionally affect you. (This is me, anyway...I get sensitive about what people say). Talk with others who will SUPPORT this awesome decision!