Friday, January 29, 2010

Childbirth Class - Part 3 & Choices/Doubts

Another good childbirth education class this week. We learned about and practiced different positions and breathing techniques for labor, and discussed birth plans and what the hospital would typically accomodate without a big hassle. The class was good, but some of the doubts I had earlier are resurfacing big time.

One of the issues now is that the pediatric practice I mentioned having problems with earlier [extremely pro-vax] is the only one with privileges at this hospital, and they see the babies in the nursery not the room. Another person in the class asked if someone else could do the newborn check, because they know of people who'd had problems with them, and was told no. I am worried they will disregard our wishes and give the HepB vaccine and vitamin K injection either way. It looks like the only way to avoid this will be giving birth at another hospital, which will mean changing OB practices [at 34+ weeks].

I'm considering this because I'm also second guessing my choice of doctors again. I finally met with the midwife who works with my OB, and was hoping to review my birth plan with her, but she said it would have to be approved by the primary doctor instead. I'm not very optimistic about that, because he never seems to have time for anything, and seemed dismissive when I asked questions before [ie, I asked about eating & drinking in labor, and he said they gave you limited ice chips, like it was non-negotiable].

A lot of this is dependent upon some meetings next week. I'll be talking with a pediatrician on Wednesday, and seeing if they are more accommodating of a delayed vaccination schedule and familiar with caring for uncircumcised boys [I've heard they were, but want to talk to the doctor myself]. I will also be interviewing the nurse midwives at the OB practice for the other hospital, to see if they are more accommodating. Their website does mention waterbirthing, suggests a doula & a birth plan, and mentions childbirth classes, including Bradley method, so I'm pretty optimistic. I just wish I'd know about this practice, and about the pediatrician issue, several months ago.

Hopefully, I will have this figured out soon, because I'm running out of time. I am finally meeting with the doula next Thursday, so maybe she knows more about the practices of these particular hospitals and/or doctors and can give me some advice. I still really, really wish this state allowed homebirths [with CNMs, because I don't really want my first birth to be unassisted, in case anything does go wrong]. I'm grateful to have these choices and options that most women don't even realize, but it seems like something that should be so simple has become such a complicated process.


  1. I found your blog while Twitter-surfing. My advice is, trust your gut and *RUN* away from your current OB. You will be SO much happier with a midwife and at a hospital with a birth philosophy more in line with your own. If the OB is saying you can only have "limited ice chips," I can only imagine what he will "allow" with regards to walking during labor, pushing in an upright position, etc. You will not regret switching!! I speak from experience.

    But if for some reason you do have to deliver at the hospital with your current OB, know that YOU are the customer, and you DO have a choice. They CANNOT take your baby away without your consent, and if you sign a document saying you do not want your baby to be vaccinated, and they do it, that's assault. Many people waive the Hep B vaccine at birth. But you shouldn't have to deal with all that right after giving birth. The hospital where I delivered had NO problems with us doing everything in the room, no issues with my son being intact (no one even mentioned circumcision to us), no issue with us skipping the vaccines (although we did end up giving the Vit K because I pushed for a long time and my son was very bruised).

    Good luck! I'll be subscribing to your blog and checking back!

  2. I agree with everything Rebecca said above. It sounds like your OB is very rigid and will be 'telling' you what you can and can't do during labor and right after the birth. Switch now if at all possible, you will be unlikely to regret it. Good luck!

  3. Thanks Rebecca & Amity,
    I'll probably switch next week if one of the midwives seems like a good fit, that's definitely what my instincts are telling me to do. I'm just mad because the OB's office originally said OK to a waterbirth & several other things I asked about, but it's like they don't want to sign off an anything, and their standing orders are actually more rigid than the hospital policy [the hospital encourages movement, clear liquids instead of ice, etc in their childbirth class]. I wonder if they just figure they can tell you what you want to hear, then assume you won't switch when you've found out they lied, because it's already paid for and you're so far along.

    I do know it's assault if they vaccinate the baby against your wishes, but I've already heard of one person who had that happen here, and of 2 who had to have their kids circumcised because of complications from forced retraction. That's got me more worried than the OB thing, because only one of their doctors will see the baby in the room instead of the nursery, and I don't know that my husband would pay enough attention to speak up or know the difference between a heel stick and a vaccination [he's kinda passive & willfully oblivious to most things he doesn't want to deal with].

    I will be making a decision as soon as I can next week, and I'll post on here and let everyone know how it goes.

  4. If you are second guessing your choices... go with your heart, but just so you know regarding the Hep B & Vit K... unless they have your consent, they cannot give them. I dealt with this after the birth of my second since we are a delaying vaccinating family.

    Stoppin' by from SITS!

  5. Follow your woman's intuition. It's there for a reason. :-)

    Thanks for visiting me on my SITS day!

  6. Raine, they absolutely lead you on and then wait until it's too late for you to switch providers to reveal their true selves. It's called "birth bait-and-switch". Check out this post at Nursing Birth:

    I'm not sure, but I don't see how they could refuse to visit your baby in your room. You just simply refuse to let the baby go to the nursery, and the ped will have to come to you. But again, the best way to avoid this to avoid this situation! :-) I'm interested to hear what you decide.


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