Birth partners

Discussion in 'Labour & Birth' started by sammielou, Jan 22, 2016.

  1. sammielou

    sammielou Well-Known Member

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    So I'm a ways off from labour, but I like to plan. Uncertainty scares me, and there is sooooo much uncertainty about labour (that I can do nothing about, only wait and see how it turns out for me!). Something very much on my mind at the moment is how my OH will handle the big day.

    My husband was seriously ill a year and a half ago. He has some related health issues that don't seem like they are going to improve dramatically between now and my due date. The two problems of concern to me with regards to my going into labour are that he gets tired easily (like, so tired he can't actually physically stay awake sometimes) and he does not handle stress well anymore.

    So I'm thinking about asking my sister to be a second birth partner. That way OH can take breaks, step out if he is finding part of it too hard to cope with, and even go off for an hour or so sleep if he needs to. I talked this through with him earlier today and he was relieved - he'd been worrying about the same things but wasn't sure if/what to say to me about it or what to do.

    How many people have 2 birth partners? Did anyone have any hassle with the hospital for wanting two, or are they generally okay with it? How do I tell my Mum about my decision to ask my sister instead of her? Me and my Mum are close, but I think she'd be a bad birthing partner. Example - my sister fell over onto a small metal spike, it pierced her eyelid and caused a lot of pain in her eye and my sister was really scared she'd lose her sight. My mum reportedly sat next to her in the hospital waiting room saying things like 'you'll be really lucky if you can still see out of that eye', 'they might not let you drive anymore if you can only see through one eye', 'what are you going to do about your business if you're not allowed to drive anymore?' So - yeah - not someone I want with me in any kind of medical crisis. I need reassurance, not someone feeding into my anxiety. I'm not sure I can really explain that to my Mum without hurting her feelings though.

    This was longer than I meant it to be. Just venting some worries and looking for other folk's experiences having people other than the father present during labour. I want OH to be there at the moment our son enters the world, but prior to that I just want someone I love and trust who can support me and help keep me calm.

    (By the way, my sister did not lose her sight)
     
  2. Glordag

    Glordag Well-Known Member

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    I think it sounds like a good idea to have your sister there too.
    My husband found the birth of our first to be very tiring and way more emotional than he thought. At one point a midwife told him not to come back in the room, she said 'you'll be no help to her like that'!
    May be you could say to your mum that you've already asked your sister so you can't change your mind now!
    Hope you manage to sort it and get the kind of birth you want x
     
  3. MrsT2011

    MrsT2011 Well-Known Member

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    I would absolutely have your sister with you - I had my mum and husband with me and it was perfect - I felt safe and supported.
    What I would do is make it clear their different roles during labour - in the event of an emergency and both me and baby being ill it was my husbands priority to stay with baby and my mum with me and they would then take control of medical decisions if I couldn't.

    As it happens the birth went smooth and my mum went home to get things ready for us to come home and I collapsed so my poor husband was holding our newborn and I was unconscious in the bath so terrifying for him and he wished my mum had been there to help.

    Sometimes you need someone to look after your husbands needs whilst he looks after yours and if he needs things like a toilet break your sister can take over x
     
  4. Emily0505

    Emily0505 Well-Known Member

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    I just had hubby as a birthing partner when I had my son.

    This time (fingers crossed we get that far) I will hopefully have my mum and my hubby.

    Poor hubby really struggled seeing me in labour. I think he was a brilliant birth partner but he said he found it really traumatic.

    So, my mum being there will take some of the pressure off him and mean that he can step out for a bit if he needs to.

    XX
     
  5. russellmuscle

    russellmuscle Well-Known Member

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    I had my OH in first time, I didnt want two people in but my hospital dont really like to accomodate two u less of a certain circumstance.

    This time round I want it the exact same way.

    Its a very special intimate and personal moment so if youd like to share that with your sister over your mum thats completely understandable.

    I had a few MWs and OH see my poor vagina stretched to its limits, that was enough for me.

    My mum waited outside though, she came in when I was stitched etc. She got a little hold and OH helped me in for a shower. It was perfect. I was able to enjoy Jackson all fresh and clean. Extra support can be good.

    xxxx
     
  6. babyslog

    babyslog Well-Known Member

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    I had two! :)
    My OH and my mum.

    Will be having the same again this time. My mum said it was the most amazing experience of her life.

    In sure your sister will be over the moon! Hopefully ur mum will understand. I have friends that have had their best mates instead of their mothers. Its your labour/birth, so you have who u feel comfortable having in with u xx
     
    #6 babyslog, Jan 22, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2016
  7. Kiagirl

    Kiagirl Well-Known Member

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    You are allowed 2 at our hospital but it has to be the same 2. I had my oh only. I don't want my mum looking down there and I only have brothers!
    My oh has an illness which means he needs sleep and stress can tigger sickness so not a great combo with labour! He also struggles with saying no so if my mum was there he would prob have just let her do everything, missed the best bits then got upset.
    He was amazing tho, I was in hospital 4 days before I had her ( in labour for 2) things weren't progressing quickly and I wasn't established and he went home. Yes I was on my own but it meant I could sleep. I made the right decision for us but can see why you would want your mum x
     
  8. sammielou

    sammielou Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the replies everyone.

    I'm a little weirded out by the thought of my sister seeing certain things, but at the same time my hubby is struggling so much with regular life I'm really worried about him. I think someone else needs to be there to take the pressure and guilt off him. If he needs a break/sleep then I don't want him to feel like he has to stay because I'll be alone otherwise. I also think if there are any complications he may freeze rather than be able to help me make the decisions. I need another person on Team Me.

    So I will ask my sister. I'll also enlist her help as to what strategy to take with mum to make sure her feelings aren't hurt.

    MrsT2011 - thank you especially for your advice. I'll think carefully about what I do/do not want each of them to do (i.e, sister can stay at the non-icky end of things!)
     
    #8 sammielou, Jan 25, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2016
  9. Blueclass

    Blueclass Well-Known Member

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    My mum wants to come but currently I don't want her there. I'm not sure she would be very helpful and she would show it if she was scared or something like that. Plus she goes on and I don't have the patience for it now let alone when I would be in labour. I also feel uncomfortable her seeing things I know that might sound silly. I currently just want my OH but iv said I will see how it goes. I told my mum who thought and told everyone she was coming that she wasn't. I wasn't rude just said if i need you il call you but I'd rather just me and OH to begin with as it will be less stressful. She seemed ok with it and ultimately it was my choice. I'm sure your mum will be ok with it I'd just be honest and say how I felt. X
     
  10. sammielou

    sammielou Well-Known Member

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    I spent the day with my sister on Saturday. She was a bit freaked out by the request and it was kinda awkward at first - she totally didn't see it coming. As the day went on though she got used to the idea and more excited by it. We've agreed she will stay away from the icky end. Both me and OH are relieved so I know we've made the right decision.

    I have my next mw appointment next week so I will ask her what my maternity ward's policy is on it. If they are awkward about it then my hubby won't have any trouble getting a letter from his GP that backs up the real need for extra support.

    I'll tell my mother when I see her next week. I'm just going to go right out and say it. If she seems upset by it or outright asks me why I didn't chose her, I'll just point out that my sister is self-employed and can drop everything at a moment's notice. Mum has work commitments and also pets to arrange care for.
     
  11. Elfs Mummy

    Elfs Mummy Well-Known Member

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    With my daughter I had my mum as her dad left me this time il have my mum and oh. If I need a csection my mum will come with me as my oh feels he won't be able to support me. This may change but I know my mum can support me and keep me distracted she also knows what I need and want my oh will support me how I need him to but my mum will have w different role x
     
  12. Patrice

    Patrice Member

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    My first labour was very exhausting, thank god my husband and my mother were with me. I thing is important to have someone, who really know what you're going through. Honestly, I felt safer with my mom, because I know what she understood my pain more than my husband. Besides, two people is better because they can rest a little while another one is with you.
     
  13. inky

    inky Well-Known Member

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    I had my OH and my mum with me for my first baby. Thank goodness mum was there because OH was useless! He was so stressed and so scared when things didn't go according to plan, my mum was keeping him calm and looking after me at the same time! Second time round I did it with no birth partner at all, I was in hospital and OH had been sent home. My daughter arrived so quickly that even though he drove to hospital as soon as he got through call she was here before he was. Strangely I found it a much more pleasant experience on my own, I found it much easier to focus and the midwives were fantastic. I didn't feel like I needed any additional support. Which is just as well hehe
     
  14. sammielou

    sammielou Well-Known Member

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    My sister told my mum about my decision in the end, due to a misunderstanding. So I don't know exactly how she took it, but the next time I saw her she seemed fine about it.

    I've since talked to two midwives who work in the labour unit I plan to have baby in, and they say 2 birth partners is fine. They said to make sure the MW looking after me on the day knows about my OH's health problems, so they won't try to cajole him into getting more involved than he can handle. There is a lounge he can go to and snooze/ drink tea etc too.

    So although I'm all kinds of anxious about labour, I don't think I'm any more anxious about it than any other first time mum now. My OH will look after me as best as he can, but whatever he can't manage my sister will be there to take it on.
     
  15. KeelyT90

    KeelyT90 Well-Known Member

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    Great idea to have 2. I had 2 last night. My Ex & Mum. mum was at my side holding my hand the whole time. Ex sat in a chair on his phone the whole time. Wished he hadn't of bothered coming.
    Not sure if mum will be at this one though as will need someone to watch my little boy this time around.

    Something to check though on your maternity ward as some vary. At ours its 2 birthing partners & once baby is born all grandparents only allowed in delivery suite for visiting until transferred to maternity ward x
     
    #15 KeelyT90, Apr 18, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2016
  16. MrsRoger

    MrsRoger Well-Known Member

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    I have said from the start that I want my OH and my mum. OH is not overly comfortable with this as my mum has a very strong personality and he does not. My mum and I can be very fiery with each other but I know that she is going to be an extremely important support for me.

    I can't explain to OH why I feel so strongly about this because how do you explain the relationship between a mother and daughter?? She is my worst enemy and my best friend all rolled into one.

    I know that having her there will allow my OH to concentrate on me and my mum will deal with everything else making sure we are all fed and watered, dealing with medical staff if I am not happy with something or don't know how to handle something my mum is the woman to ask those questions and get answers.

    I just thing all the little things that OH could possibly get distracted by that he doesn't need to she can deal with it so that OH and I can fully enjoy the experience.

    I am also having two lol so the extra pair of hands will be awesome!!

    As for my mum seeing my foof!! She has one, she won't be looking to see my foof she will be looking to see her Grandchildren popping out lol!! You will probably be so pre-occupied with pushing you wouldn't even think about it xxxxx
     
  17. KeelyT90

    KeelyT90 Well-Known Member

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    Thats good! Well you're the one in the pain so you're the decision maker in my opinion lol. Foof haha, my mum never looked, she stayed at my side holding my hand and protected my dignity haha not that you have any in child birth x
     

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