Just interested in hearing about how some have responded to your choice in home birth.
Surprisingly, the people I would imagine backing me most on my (emphasis, my) choice of a home birth have responded the worst. 

Do you ramble off study after study on the benefits of home birth? Do you ignore their crazed rampages? Or do you simply not clue them in to your decision?

Finally after hearing enough and explaining enough, I just point them in the direction of Business of Being Born ;) or I just say, "we're doing it in the garage, in the dogs crate" - that shuts them up pretty quickly.

I'm telling you, these are the days I am thankful most of our family is 600 miles away --so we don't have to deal with "interventions" of another kind ;)

Tags: birth, home

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Replies to This Discussion

My family is shocked and don't particularly agree but they keep the comments to themselves because they know that I'm different and whatever they say won't change their mind. The biggest backlash we get is from people that we're not close to or complete strangers. I don't go around advertising that we're having a homebirth but we don't lie when asked about what hospital we're going to.

I usually don't invest much energy debating with them except to let them know that I want to be in control of my birth instead of being delivered of my baby by a doctor who decides when it's time to push/cut and that will push whatever intervention seems convenient at the time. Given that most of them had interventions in their births that shuts them up.
most people our age are very supportive. My grandmother and mother find it "unsettling" haha. My mom won't say anything around me but my sister tells me that my mom is "terrified she's going to lose me". Any more dramatic than that?? I think it scares her that I'm giving up control of the situation in her eyes. I'm going to let my body do what it needs to do. It's scary for people to be reminded that they can't control everything.
My mom has a negative attitude towards everything. I am sure if I were doing hospital delivery, she'd find something to complain about with regards to that, too. The weirdest reaction has been from my 26 year old brother in law -as if he has one ounce of knowledge about childbirth. I told him when he's ready to squeeze a baby from his penis, he can tell me how well it works out at the hospital for him. :)

When it comes to most people my own age, it is just ignorance, they have no idea of the training midwives go through. They have no idea about high risk- low risk situations, or can't imagine why I wouldn't want to opt out of the pain and just get an epi, or schedule a c-section. Everything is dramatic and catastrophe ridden.

Trying to explain to them what an induction is like for someone who has never had one, nor had any children, is like trying to describe music to a deaf person, or color to a blind person.
That's so weird! I wonder why she would be against it for you if she had two successful home births...?!
I would say volunteer as little info as possible-you have nothing to prove-if you want to brag about your beautiful homebirth after the fact well then they can't very well yell at you then-
if they ask and if you must answer honestly then keep it short and simple. Go with the fact that MOST people will not be supportive unless you live in a community where it is common. So, on that note do not set yourself up for frustrating confrontations. If it is a conversation you can't get out of, then say "i did the research, I am very comfortable with the idea,when you do the research then come back and talk to me...these are the books, websites,statistics Ive read, these are the people Ive talked to etc...".
Thanks, DoulaChandra. We're on our fourth child. The first three were all hospital born, with the same OB, all of my pregnancies were low-risk, and the deliveries at the hospital less than spectacular with unnecessary interventions.
I'm one who just doesn't talk about it with anyone that doesn't need to know. My Mother was a little worried, but since she's my Mom she has decided to just accept that we are who we are and she wants to be there for her grandchild no matter where I give birth. My sister-in-law has been a little pushier because she is a icu nurse for infants. She had a scheduled hospital birth and is very worried I'm going to "murder my baby" if I don't do it the same way. I don't discuss my pregnancy with her at all.

For the most part I find myself smiling and nodding while people tell me that I should get my epidural right when I get to the hospital and that scheduling the induction was the best choice they ever made and I should do it too. I thank them for the advice and go on my way knowing that none of what they said applies to me. My favorite is when people advise me to labor at home for as long as possible before heading to the hospital. "Yes," I say, "I intend to do just that." (In fact I intend to labor there until the baby shows up!)
Great answers Kathryn!
Most of my friends and family have been supporitive and interested. I think that most of them trust me and my understanding of the natural birth process. There are some members of my family that I will not tell until after the baby has been born. I don't need the fear and negativity transference. Most people who are shocked by your choice to birth at home know nothing about home birth. They have an image in their mind of an unassisted birth. I just smile, maybe I'll politely give them facts, maybe I won't, it depends on my mood. I jsut keep in mind that I know what I'm doing is absolutely the best decision for me and my baby, and for the rest of my family.
Thanks for all the great responses!
I decided years ago that I wanted to do home birth and when I mentioned it to my fiance he was behind me 100%. We told most family members that it would be home birth before we even conceived. That way they weren't surprised when it happened. There are some friends and some family that I just do not share my plans with. You know those people you have in your life, that not matter how many statistics or facts you give them, they still believe their answer is the only one? Those people are the ones I choose to NOT share my choices with. I know i my heart that being at home is the safest and most loving place for my family. I had one family member say "Oh but that will be so messy" I just told her "Well, we plan on laying tarps all over the house and getting a really nice shop vac. " LOL She has kept her comments to herself since. My mother had all 3 of us natural (in a hospital) with no intervention or meds and I feel I will not have that option in the hospital setting of today. Our midwife has been a glorious blessing and I thank GOD everyday that we found her.
Definitely Meredith!

As a matter of fact, my sister in law just had her baby in the hospital this morning after a 30 hour labor. Everything went off without a hitch for her- she knew she wanted an epi, etc. Excited to share the news with my mom - her response was "30 hours for a 6lb baby?- thats a bit long." - No congrats, hope she's healthy, yay... nothing. I am convinced I could tell her the pope delivered my baby in five minutes and she'd find something negative to say.

I told my husband this morning, go ahead and send texts and emails to your family, we'll just let mine know 3 days later after the baby is born :)

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