Post # 1
- Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom
I am 30 weeks pregnant with baby #1. Tomorrow is my first appt with my OB…I have officially ‘graduated’ from seeing my family doctor. I have gone on record with the Bees before expressing my nerves about a vaginal birth, and recieved LOTS of wonderful support and stories that have made me feel much better! That being said, I have also spoken to an aquaintance recently who had both her kids at the same hospital as me (and with the same OB) and she was allowed to have elective c-sections. She talked about how she had similar worries and anxieties as me in regards to vaginal birth, and the OB was 100% ok with giving her this option. So now it’s got me thinking…
Tomorrow (as part of my appointment) I will be discussing my birth plan. I am now really torn about whether or not I for an elective C-section. I mean, as I have said before, I am less afraid of routine abdominal surgery than I am about tearing up my delicate lady bits. But I don’t want to open ‘pandoras box’ and ask for one if I am later going to change my mind…ESPECIALLY since I am now aware of how ‘pro c-section’ this OB is.
Bees who have opted for elective c-sections, what was your reasoning and how was it? To the Bees who’ve had both c-sections and vaginal births, what is your comparative experience with both? All opinions are welcome. I only ask that everyone remains polite and respectful 🙂
Thanks in advance!
Post # 2
- Wedding: October 2016 - Painswick Church and the Falcon Hotel
I’ve had 2 elective C-sections. Both such good experiences child birth is messy business and I decided it wasn’t for me. It was so relaxing literally half your body weight is gone and you feel lighter, I didn’t feel any pain at all and recovered really quickly where as some of my friends who gave birth naturally had no end of problems
Post # 3
Your lady bits are delicate, but remember they were also made to give birth. That’s not to throw shade at a c-section, but to remind you that everything will heal if you DO go with a vaginal birth.
Personally I would only choose a c-section if I had to/the risks of vaginal birth were too high. Caring for a newborn/figuring out breastfeeding/running on very little sleep are all hard enough without adding in recovery from major abdominal surgery.
If you do want to go that route, I would first look into your options in terms of skin-to-skin etc right after birth. Many c-section hospitals don’t allow it, and in fact it might be some time before you can see/hold your little one.
Post # 4
I would seriously question an OB who is more than okay with elective c-sections. That’s a red flag.
I understand that birth is scary, I think it’s usually fear of the unknown. However, I would never opt for major abdominal surgery over a vaginal birth unless it was 100% medically necessary. Yes, you may tear during a vaginal birth, but I’ve never met anyone who felt themselves tear during labor. I had first and second degree tears with my first and didn’t feel it at all. Sure, sitting down on a hard surface for the first week was uncomfortable, but I would still take that over a c-section if I could.
Post # 5
One thing to look up is long term health impacts on babies born via C-section vs vaginal. I feel like most people focus specifically on the actual birth and impact on the mother (understandable!) but there are other long term factors in the equation to take into consideration. After a rise in csections in the US in the 80s and beyond science and research have the opportunity to examine medium and long term outcomes of C-section babies (I am one of them) that we can now use to inform our decisions.
Post # 6
I would never go to a doctor who schedules c sections for shits and giggles. I’ve had one, its serious business, can have scary complications, and should be treated as a last resort. Our bodies are made to give birth via our vaginas. I’m trying not to be nasty here, but this just sounds…vain.
Post # 7
I also would be highly skeptical of an OB that supported elective C sections.
Vaginal birth. (1) The tearing thing. Sure, an overwhelming majority of women who deliver vaginally will experience some kind of tearing. But a very small minority (<5%) experience severe tearing, and as one of those 5%, I can promise you I did not feel it even though my epidural was wearing off, and recovery was nowhere near as bad as I feared. Those delicate lady bits are designed to heal with remarkable speed. (2) The incontinence thing. Yes, women who deliver vaginally have higher rates of urinary incontinence a few years out from childbirth than women who deliver via cesarean. But it’s not like you get off scot free with a planned C section. Postpartum incontinence has a lot to do with weakening pelvic floor muscles, which is a natural process that happens during pregnancy and does not depend as much on delivery route as you might think. (3) The pain thing. Hellooooo epidural, where have you been all my life.
In exchange for those risks you are choosing a path that brings with it increased risk of hemorrhage, clots, infection, organ injury, maternal and infant mortality, health complications for the baby (see more here)… everything about labor and delivery is a risk-risk tradeoff, and in some cases those risks are worthwhile to avoid a more clear and present danger to mom or baby. C sections are medical marvels and should not be demonized. I am not trying to fearmonger. There are a number of reasons a C section might be the safest choice. But I cannot for the life of me wrap my head around anxiety as the driving factor in making this choice.
Post # 8
I am also 30 weeks pregnant and really hope I don’t have a c-section for almost the opposite reasons! I’m a runner and very athletic and that’s a really important part of my life, and I’m terrified to have my abs cut open! I can only imagine how long it would take to get them back to normal (or as close as possible), and a c-section takes longer to recover from. I think you aren’t allowed to exercise for closer to 8-10 weeks vs 6 with a vaginal birth. Ultimately it’s between you and your doctor, but I would just make sure you really understand what you may be getting yourself into!
Post # 9
I made a thread a few days ago because my baby is lying breech (now oblique at 35 weeks). I’m apprehensive because a non-optimal position makes it more likely that I’d HAVE to have a c-section.
I got a lot of good responses from those who’ve had positive experiences with c-sections. It made me breathe a whole lot easier!
Post # 10
i had two c-sections (emergency) and they aren’t all roses and ponies either.. it might seem like it since you’re numb during the surgery, but the pain for like 4-6 weeks after is no joke. every time i stood up, i felt like my stomach was ripping open. i haven’t had a vaginal birth so i can’t comment on that, but my friends that have were up and moving within a day or so and have no long term issues.
edited to add: not to scare people who have to get c-sections. obviously i survived and everything is fine. i’m just saying, if you have a choice between the two, i probably wouldn’t choose to have major abdominal surgery.
Post # 11
Vaginal births are NOT scary they are natural and a part of life. Why would you willingly choose to go through surgery and have a harder time recovering? I didn’t tear and didn’t have stitches and was back to normal in 24 hours.
Anyway I agree with PPs run from a Dr who is willing to schedule elective c-sections. It gives them more money and makes it better on their schedule so of course they are willing.
Post # 12
I would seriously question a doc who will routinely perform elective c-sections. Not only is he not making the best choice for both mom and baby without medical cause, unless you’re paying out of pocket most insurance companies will not cover electives, meaning he will be committing insurance fraud. No one likes the prospect of pushing a baby out of their vagina, but having done it twice and being terrified the first time, I’ll say it’s not that big of a deal and I was excited for it the second time. Our bodies were made to do it. C-sections are great for mom and baby in the event something goes wrong, but they should absolutely not be considered in the absence of medical indications.
my first birth I had a small road rash tear with some discomofrt and everything went back to normal within a few weeks. My second birth I did not tear, had zero swelling and could have had sex hours after if I wanted to (other than the bleeding and infection risk of course). Felt completely normal with no pain after.
Post # 13
I am pregnant and a c-section is our last resort option. I hope to heck I can deliver this baby vaginally and without pain meds. Recovery is known to be faster that way, and our bodies are literally made to give birth like that. I will do everything possible to avoid a c-section.
Post # 14
Disclosure: not a mom. Childbirth is scary but I definitely want to overcome that and be empowered by what my body is meant to do. Its great that Csections exist for emergencies but IMO it should be left for that. Not just wimping out for vanity’s sake. Your lady bits are NOT delicate. Slicing your abs open just isnt worth the risk of harm to yourself or the longterm risks to your kid. Look at the longterm studies…
Post # 15
My OB was absolutely not okay with an elective c-section saying that it did more damage than natural birth because it wasn’t natural. And that she only did c-sections if the baby needed it. Thankfully my birth was very easy and I didn’t even tear. After giving birth the next day when she checked me down there she joked about how it looked like I hadn’t even given birth it was healing so nicely. The whole point is, your body is made to give birth. So give yourself more credit and don’t think of it as ruining your lady bits.