I am 6 1/2 weeks pregnant and just had my initial appointment with the doctor last week before being referred to a midwife (that's the typical MO here in the UK). The doctor assumed that I was planning a hospital birth and when I informed her that I was looking at either a home birth or birth center birth, her response was basically, "well, you're a first-time Mom so don't be disappointed if it doesn't happen." Is there any reason I should be concerned about being able to give birth outside a hospital? Any first-time Moms who did who could give me a little encouragement? Thanks everyone!
Hi Sarah, I had my son at home and he was my first born. Lot's of people thought that I was nuts b/c I had never been in labor before and so therefore I didn't really understand what it was going to be like. However, I took the time to do lots of research, found a great midwife and took a 12 week birth preparation course. I also had a Doula.
You can have the same thing. Just make sure you prepare yourself for what labor is going to be like and also any complications that might arise. My midwife required that I had a "transfer" plan. This included packing a hospital bag. She assured me that the only reason she would transfer me was if there was a problem. This meant that she would be looking out for anything abnormal and we would make a decision BEFORE things became an emergency.
By the way, I know it is typical for 1st time mom's to have long labors, however my labor was a little over 8 hrs start to finish, so not ALL first time moms have really long labors.
Good Luck and just remember educate yourself!!!!
Whoa! 8 hours? That's amazing! Do you feel there was anything particular that you did while laboring that encouraged your labor to progress so quickly? I'm sure being at home didn't hurt. :o)
A transfer plan sounds like a really great idea. I intend to consider all the possible scenarios and make sure my wishes are communicated accordingly.
As to educating myself, I was actually a doula for a while before moving to the UK so I probably know way more than I need to. ;o)
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Kate.
Having your first at home is not too much to ask for!!!! I had my first at home and was so very empowered by the experience. One of the most important factors is finding a care provider who believes that birth is normal and safe and will support YOUR decisions. One who leaves you feeling empowered and not fearful (if you leave them feeling fearful, that should serve as a red flag to you). Because it's your baby, your body, your birth! The other suggestion that I have is yes, do the research and soul searching, but in the end you must follow your own instincts regarding your birth (wherever you choose that to be.)
I found this website helpful in making my decision. Good luck to you!!!!!
Sarah, I posted a link to your question on my Mamas and Babies facebook page (www.facebook.com/pages/Mamas-and-Babies/119679234738589), and I thought I'd share the responses with you:
Rebecca - "Grrr can't get on now but I hope someone refers her to homebirth.org.uk and the associated yahoo list."
Mamas and Babies - "What strikes me as funny in the situation is that the doctor is referring her to a midwife, as is customary in the UK unless there are complications. Shouldn't the midwife be the one to decide whether home birth is viable for this mom?"
Tania - "I was just going to say, lucky for her, it's not up to the OB."
Mychel - "I have to argue the comment... it's not up to MW or OB. If we listened to that crap in the states, no one would have a home birth. It's up to the mom to decide what is best for her."
Heather - "That's the best one to have a homebirth with. This one will affect all your future birthings. Just imagine your confidence level doing it at home and knowing how awesome you are for having pushed out your baby and realizing the awesome power you have. Birth goes perfectly nearly all the time if left alone. At home, it will be left alone. Good luck!"
Tameryn - "I had my first at home in water no probs. In the UK :) wishing you a blessed birthing"
Monique - "Thinking on my hospital birth (which was awesome), I now realize I DEFINITELY could have done it unassisted (meaning w/o a dr, I think I TRULY needed my mom and doula to keep me focused and deep breathing)."
Monique - "Dr didn't even make it so the nurse caught her. I didn't need them in there at all. I breathed and labored on my own, pushed when I felt ready and she was out after only 5 pushes (is "pushes" a word?lol). You can do it. Don't let him scare you."
Anna - "I'm high risk, and my midwife felt comfortable enough to let me have my first at home! it's better to start you homebirth with your first because of your body's memory of birth, if they help you out with picton or something at the hospital your body will remember and want the same next birth, I've had friends who tried to have the 2nd baby at home and got too frusterated (because her body wanted to be induced, because of the induction of their first child) she had gone into labor 5 or 6 times and then just decided to go to the hospital to be induced... that has happened with many friends I've known who decide 2 or 3 kids down the line that they want a homebirth. it's so much easier if you just have your homebirth with the first! and just because it's your first is a really dumb reason to NEED to have baby in the hospital!!!"
Ultimately remember it's your decision. The doctor was expressing an opinion. I had my first four in the hospital and my fifth at home. If I could go back I would have had them ALL at home. Trust yourself and your body, and do what you feel is best.
Hi Sarah! Yes you can definitely do it! Like others have said, perhaps most first births occur in the hospital because the mothers don't realize there are other viable options. I had my first baby at home 5 months ago, our story is on my page if you want to check it out. And here's some inspiration for you: it was a quick, smooth, 4.5 hour labor! Best of luck to you.
Grrrrr. Stuff like that just gets my dander up! :o)
Thanks for the encouragement, Lindsay! It can be hard to just let people's comments roll off me and not "absorb" all the negativity, but I'm trying! Great suggestion to find some other first-time home birth moms. I can use all the encouragement I can get! :o)