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Siblings present at birth


Forum: Home Birth

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  #1  
August 5th, 2007, 06:50 PM
jhmomofmany's Avatar Look! A Dancing Banana!
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I would like to hear if any of you have personal experience with older siblings being present (that is, in the same room) when you were giving birth.

Our children were home with us but not in the room for Thomas' birth and at the time of Hope's delivery. I'm thinking I might ask at least my daughter if she would be interested in staying with me. I would think it might be a good experience for her and a bonding thing for us. I'm not sure about my boys, though. The younger two would probably be an irritating distraction (said with a mother's affection!), the 7yo is squeamish, and the 12 year old... well, just say he's a pre-teen!
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  #2  
August 5th, 2007, 09:35 PM
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I had my 7 yr old (almost 8) present for my daughters birth. We talked about it before hand, showed him birth videos, and although he was initially squeamish, he got used to it through watching videos & he really rose to the occasional when the time came

Im so glad he was there, I wouldnt have had it any other way & I think it really strengthened the bond between them.

Lala...
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  #3  
August 6th, 2007, 12:56 PM
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My daughter has been present for 2 sibling births and she plans to be at this one also. She was 8 and 9, will be 10 when this one arrives. She did wonderfully. My boys have had no interest in being there, and I'd really rather them not for modesty's sake anyway. They have come and gone during labor, but not for the actual births.

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  #4  
August 6th, 2007, 05:37 PM
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Eli was present at Remy's birth. And he was a good labor sitter. But he was only 4 when I gave birth. I loved having him there and he still talks of it sweetly and he adores birth because of it.
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  #5  
August 6th, 2007, 08:24 PM
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Well, that is encouraging. I haven't asked DH what he would think of it yet. Thanks for sharing.
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  #6  
August 6th, 2007, 10:22 PM
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My little ones who are 3 & 4 (almost 4 & 5) were present at the birth of baby Liberty in May. I didn't know initially how I would feel about them seeing the birth but I really left that up to them and they both rushed upstairs excitedly as I began pushing. They were THRILLED to have been a part of the baby's birth and it was absolutely SO wonderful and natural. It felt as if that's the way it should be. I want my children to grow up knowing that birth is a normal and natural thing and not something to fear or be grossed out by. It was crucial, I believe, in their bonding experience with the baby. They have had NO resentments toward her as many children will when a baby is just presented from out of nowhere and is all of a sudden the star attraction. They were part of the experience and continue to be as they love to help out with her whenever possible. I spent a lot of time during the pregnancy explaining everything to them and telling them about birth. We always looked up the different in utero stages of baby and studied the development together. We talked about what the birth would be like...about the afterbirth and pretty much the whole shebang (not the birds and the bees, mind you...just the birth process!). My midwife/ND showed the kids the placenta afterwards and explained all the parts of it and it's purpose. They were pretty much excited about everything so it was not only a bonding experience but also a learning experience on so many different levels. I wouldn't have had it any other way.
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  #7  
August 7th, 2007, 08:21 AM
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Good question. My kids haven't been there for the births of any of our other babies, but I feel very strongly about having them around this time. I really want this to be a family experience. I will leave it up to them however. Someone will be here to care for them while I'm busy laboring, but when the time comes for baby to make it's entrance, I want them to have the option of being in the room. I have a feeling my 4 yr old will be the only one excited to be there since my oldest two are very squeamish and the youngest is well, only 2. I think it will be a very positive experience for whoever chooses to witness it.
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  #8  
August 7th, 2007, 11:27 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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Ani and Cameron (then 6 1/2 and almost 5) were there for Fritz's birth. I don't think they were in the room when he was actually born though. They came and went as they wanted. I know they were there at least when I started pushing.
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  #9  
August 8th, 2007, 07:35 AM
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My two were present for our last babies birth. They were 6 and 3 at the time and did wonderfully. We have beautiful video of my 3 year old sitting on the bed, rubbing my belly and running her hands down my face with a sympathetic smile on her lips. My 6 year old is in one of the pictures at my side while my eyes are closed in a contraction, she is standing next to me with her eyes closed in prayer. Beautiful.

When #5 was born, my 6 year old clapped her hands, squealed with delight, then promptly broke down into huge aligator tears while gasping "He's here! He's here!!". She had the honor of cutting his cord, which prompted her to exclaim that she wanted to help birth babies when she grew up. Our 3 year old, OTOH, was content to hold my hand, help her brother latch on, and just quietly watch me with big eyes. My midwife and doula, who cares that they were 6 and 3?!

I blogged about this awhile ago. This is what I had to say at that time.

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  #10  
August 17th, 2007, 11:28 PM
Michelle Allmon's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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My oldest was present when I had her little sister at home. She was only 3. She was my water girl. Even when things got hairy she didn't get scared. Even when I thought I was going to die she wasn't scared. We prepared her as much as possible for months before and she want to the midwife for every checkup. She held her sister right away, it was awesome!

With my 3rd child, we attempted another home birth and she was there along with her sister. Unfortunately, we ended up having to get an ambulance. She was totally fine and and not scared at all. The midwive's assistants stayed with the girls while we went to the hospital and my husband picked them up later.

As long as they know what is going to happen nd that it's normal, I think it's a great thing.

Oh, one more thing. When I was pushing her sister out in on our bed, she insisted on being in her underwear because I was naked and my husband was in sweatpants only. It was so great being in bed with my family almost nude while giving birth. Very natural.
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  #11  
August 18th, 2007, 09:15 PM
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My son will be 20 mths or so when Tucker is born. I'm sure if he's not sleeping he'll be w/mommy! He is the sweetest in the world! I know one day he'll be climbing mountains but, right now he's sticking coffee tables and dinner tables!LOL!
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