February 17, 2011

Mom & MIL vs. Home-births

Even though it's gonna be a while before I try to get pregnant, I've done a lot of research about home-birth and birthing centers. A LOT. I feel pretty well informed about midwifery, doulas, and all that comes along with a non-traditional (read: hospital) birth. That being said, in recent conversations regarding family members giving birth I've mentioned that I am highly, if not exclusively, interested in having an alternative birth plan. I feel very strongly against the medicalization of pregnancy and fear-based birthing that tends to take place in hospital settings.

Well holy crap!

Both my Mom and Pru's literally freaked out. They immediately and vehemently protested this idea and launched into the always clever "but what if something goes wrong and you're not near a neo-natal unit?!" argument. I tried to explain that a good midwife would never attempt to deliver a "high-risk" pregnancy at home and in the event something went wrong, they'd be more than happy to transfer delivery to a hospital setting LONG before it became an issue. I also mentioned that statistically, midwives have excellent track records and low death-rates among both infants and mothers and significantly less c-sections, particularly when compared against For-Profit hospitals.

They heard about, oh... 0% of what I said.
I don't think I'll be mentioning this again for a long time...

Anyone else have people freak out when they brought up a birth plan in a setting other than a hospital??


  1. Yes, definitely. I think it is par for the course. It is great you are talking about it now, so at least you & Pru can get on the same page. How would she feel about a hospital-adjacent birth center if home birth is too scary for her? What would make your pregnancy high risk? (I apologize if I missed this earlier.) If you do have a home birth, what would trigger a transfer for you?

    Helen was NOT INTO a home birth, even though that was my preference. We agreed instead to have a doula stay with us through labor and go to the hospital only when I was ready to push-- which is exactly what happened. I was happy with the outcome, even the hospital part, because my placenta was retained and I would have had to transfer after birth anyway, and that would have been more traumatic for all. Anyway... Sorry to bogart your comment space. Feel free to email me (kgsavoie...gmail) if you want more details...

  2. Oops-- I misread that as Pru, not Pru's mom...sorry! But if you do your research and maybe keep the details vague if you think they will cause undue concern...

  3. yes...better to keep it to yourself! ;)
    people go nuts!

  4. my brother had a similar reaction when i told him we were switching from an OB to a midwife. i think he thought it meant home birth, which we've never intended to do even though we respect those who do.

    i do get super condescending reactions about natural birth and water birth and have also gotten a few of those after mentioning cloth diapers. i'm learning to keep my mouth shut. my coworker whose wife had a non-medicated birth and who now cloth diapers said he keeps this stuff quiet for the same reason. either people patronize you or they think you're somehow judging them for not making the same choice as you. all of this stuff is so loaded for people.

  5. Where have you guys been??? Hoping everything is a-ok...just checking in to say hi!