I am interested in giving birth somewhere other than a hospital, such as an alternative birth center. I don't know if I want to do this at home. I do want a skilled attendant, and medical back up only if really necessary. I do want some pain management options available, not necessarily an epidural. I do want emotional and psychological support, water birth option, my husband present, ability to pick my position and move about, freedom to vocalize, ability to birth the placenta and keep the cord intact while pulsating. I want freedom from pressures to undergo unnecessary interventions.
I do NOT want episiotomy, constant fetal monitoring (electrode screwed into baby's head), painful internal exams, a bunch of staff I do not know touching or observing me, unnecessary C-section, or other invasive, standard hospital procedures. I do NOT want other's controlling beliefs, ideas or lifestyle forced on me, or psychological manipulation. I do not want to be strapped down, or required to lie in lithotomy position (flat on back with legs in stirrups.) I do not want a male doctor. I do not want to lose my dignity.
What are my options? Many alternative birth centers want "low risk." I am low-risk, other than my age, negative Rh, and history of chronic neck / back pain. I am healthy and physically fit, an exerciser and slim. I will be 39 for this birth, my first. I am willing to go to a nearby state, if necessary, though I do work, and I would like to minimize inconvenience and expenses.
Any help or suggestions are appreciated. I do appreciate that others may not agree with everything I want / don't want, but I am having this baby, not them. Options?
Sounds like you want the Alternative Birth Center at West Suburban in Oak Park. It's hugely popular, and you'll get everything you want there: http://www.westsubmidwives.com/birthcenter.html
I've attended births there (I'm a doula) and can honestly say it's the most supportive place in the entire area for natural, normal birth. The West Sub midwives have a 9% cesarean rate. Call them right away!
All the best.