Post # 1
My SO and I are getting married in March and we want to be pregnant pretty quickly after that. We are a lesbian couple so it might take a little time for me to get pregnant, but that is a totally different subject.
Anyway, I want to hear from nautral birthing moms. No meds, midwife, doula, birthing center, at home; however you did it! I really want to be as natural as possible not because of the health of the baby but because of my comfort of not being tied down to a bed.
How did you pick your team? What helped you the most with pain?
I know it is incredibly early to be asking this, but I love being overly prepared!
Post # 3
I had my first child completely natural in the hospital with pitocin (medication to speed labor). Every person is different as is every labor so I will share what my view is:
I had both of my children in the hospital. Both times I was up walking until about 8 cm was able to use the large whirpool. Pretty much do what I needed to do to get through it. I was lucky I was at the hospital because I had abruption of the placenta with my first and we both could have died. So chosing a place where you feel you have enough freedom, but that you will be able to get the care you need was really the most important thing to me.
I had my mom and sister there with my first. I was young and having my mom there was such a great support. My second my DH was the only one there and it was great to have something special we went through together. Both times the nurses were so amazing, they really are a great source too.
I really like the tub, but not the shower so much. It really progressed thing pretty quickly. I think books regarding the Bradley method, I never did the long class, are helpfull I also was pretty silent and self focused during labor and that helped me. There are a lot of great sites about Bradley and hypnobirthing that I learned a lot from.
Post # 4
I had an unmedicated birth with my son in a hospital. I intended to have an unmedicated birth but I’ll admit that I asked for an epidural (at 6cm) but by the time I was wheeled into my room less than 30 minutes later, it was already too late as I was fully dialated so I ended up with my original intent but not by my own mental willpower (pretty fast L&D with what felt like no breaks in contractions at all).
I stayed at home the majority of my labor (4 of the <6 hours) and spent a lot of time in a hot shower. I tried laying down in the tub/shower at one point but it was way too uncomfortable for me. Baby had been at a -1 station for weeks so anything on my back was out of the question and our bathtub wasn’t big enough to be on my side in. When I was out of the shower I preferred to lay still on my side and just breathe. I didn’t like walking around or sitting on a birthing ball at all (I suspect because baby was so low already that the pressure was really uncomfortable). We had taken a 1/2-day class on prepared childbirth that was focused on unmedicated birth and most of those techniques just didn’t do it for me as I didn’t want to move around or be touched.
Just having DH quietly near me and available was helpful to me. I didn’t want a doula or anyone else, just DH, so that is what we did. I don’t like people telling me what to do so I knew I wouldn’t necessarily appreciate the advice a doula might give me. Also, I read Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and would recommend it.
Post # 5
@Pelikila: Is the actual pushing part as painful as the contractions or just different?
Post # 6
Do you think that a nautral birth and being able to move reduced tearing?
My SO wants me to do it in the hosptial, but she isn’t the one giving birth. I am hoping I can compromise with partial labor at home and giving birth unmedicated at the hospital.
Post # 7
@bells: I think it depends on each person but in general I’d say it is just different. The contractions were intense because I was mentally ready for the small breaks between them (10-30 seconds), but that didn’t seem to happen for me so I gave in and requested the epidural because it was just constant pain. I think if I had gotten the small breaks between contractions I may have been able to not request the epidural but who knows. The painful part of pushing for me was tearing (I had a 2nd degree tear) but I only had to push twice and baby was out (I’m telling you, he was so far down in my pelvis that is likely why walking/sitting/laying on my back was so uncomfortable for me). The tear as baby crowned was like scalding heat but it was over so quickly that I don’t think I’m a good judge for the comparison with long term pushing.
Post # 8
@Pelikila: thanks a lot of the information!!
Post # 9
@JessisGirl: I think the most helpful thing overall for me was not being hooked up to all the monitors through the majority of my labor. It allowed me to be in the shower when I wanted, lay down when I wanted (without worrying if the monitor is still picking up baby), not second-guessing baby’s reaction to everything, etc. I know when I was in maternity triage they asked my husband if I had had high blood pressure at any time during my pregnancy (answer: no) because it was through the roof at that moment and I think if I’d labored in the hospital for any length of time they would have wanted to do interventions because of it.
I had asked my OB what she suggested since I wanted an unmedicated birth and her answer was to stay at home as long as possible. She said until you can no longer talk through the contractions, you don’t need to come in. Then once that occurred, to come in and get the hep lock for in-case purposes and take it from there. The hospital she attends at left it up the OB with regard to fetal monitoring frequency and duration and my OB said if all that happened the way she suggested, she’d only want external fetal monitoring every 30 minutes or so and she’d let me be disconnected otherwise as long as everything was looking good.
Post # 10
I have had natural birth with both of my kids. My last one was so easy I said to the doctor “that was so easy, let’s do it again”. He cracked up. The first one wasn’t easy. I had a midwife and a doula for that one which I prefer. It really varies per baby not necessarily because of your team. My next kid I plan to have at home. If you ever want to chat about natural childbirth just PM me.
Post # 11
sorry, long one….
i was my friends birthing partner and she had a drug free birth and there was only myself, her (of course), the father (why he bothered i do not know) and a midwife
my friends birthplan was to stay home for as late as possible and be drug free with min intervention. the only stressful thing was that her water didnt break so after about 8hrs of labour (10pm to 6am but she first started feeling twinges about 3pm) and she didnt want to go to the hospital to be told she wasnt dialated and she had hours still to go but overall she handled the contractions really well, no screaming or carrying on, just breathing through them and we took a few walks
she hit transition and i made the call that it was time to go to the hospital – the room was just a room. a bed, shower, a call button and nothing else, not even a doctor – it could have been a home birth by the look of it.
when we arrived her contractions were 1min apart and she was about 7cm dialated – her contractions seemed to stop when she was lying down being checked over and the nurse asked if she wanted her water to be broken – my friend couldnt think straight and looked at me (i knew her birth plan) so i said no leave it alone for now and lets see what happens and about 10mins later she was in the shower (hot water on the back) and her water broke (i still shudder to think it could have happened in my car!)
my friend was most comfortable standing up and leaning on a bean bag that was on a bed and pushing (graving helps im told), after contractions one of us would give her some ice chips and/or a sea sponge soaked in ice water to suck on – she gave birth within 30mins of arriving at the hospital.
the midwife was great, caught the baby, cleaned up, my friend was happy and feeding within an hour
im in australia so drug free seems to be the majority from my circle of friends and family and ive never heard of any of them having their membranes stripped which seems to happen to a lot of american women
Post # 12
@secondchances: wow luck you!! I want to have an easy birth!!
Hopefully more people post in this thread, because its all very useful information
Post # 13
This really is awesome information. I will show it to my SO. We talked about it a little more last night and she said as long as we made it to the hospital at some pint during the labor, I can be at home as long as I need to.
I also found a doula and I have my paps with a midwife so I will chat with her about it, too. Thanks again for all the info!!
Post # 14
This is all great information, i hope more people post because I want to learn more about it as well.
Post # 15
I didn’t have a natural birth (used meds) but I waited a while to get them. I strongly recommend using a tub to soak in during contractions. I used it before I had any meds and I almost fell asleep! It was bliss.
ETA: I forgot to add that I also used a “birthing ball” (yoga ball) but it didn’t do much for me. It’s supposed to widen your hips and make you more comfortable but I just felt like I was going to fall off. I’m only 5’1″ so maybe that was why!
Post # 16
I did not have a completely natural birth but here is my story. I began the signs of labor around 12pm in the afternoon but I was scheduled to be induced that eveing at 7:00pm so I was determined to wait until I was sure I was in labor before going to the hospital. By the time 5pm rolled around the contractions were very close together and my ex and I raced off to the hospital (in Friday evening rush hour/beach traffic). We didn’t get to the hospital until 6:15pm. I was checked and found out I was already 7cm dialated and it was too late for an epidural. Around 6:30 or 6:45 they gave me Staytol which only took the edge off the pain. I beggan pushing at about 7:15pm and my daughter was born at 7:43.
Pushing vs contractions is a really tough comparison. The contractions would go away and I’d have a little break. Pushing was intense and uncomfortable. By the time my daughter’s head was crowning my hoo-haha was on fire. One push later and she literally slid right out (I watched in a mirror). I did have a minor tear and my daughter was 7lbs 10oz so her size may have had something to do with it (I’m 5’2″ and 110lbs).
All in all it was a great labor (so fast) that I would replicate in a heartbeat. If I could make it med-free I probably would. Considering this labor was only about 7 hours or less I’m concerned about how quick baby #2 will come.