I'm a new DAD!; I've got Questions!

WOW!!! I can’t believe it, Ok, ok, I *can *believe it, I saw it [the baby] on the sonogram. Life is good, I’m very happy, we are very happy, jobs are great all is good - but I’ve got questions, lot’s of questions!!

Mrs. Phlosphr and I are very healthy, but the first trimester was horrible for her. Lot’s of morning sickness, afternoon sickness and nighttime sickness - the Doc and Midwife say that the baby is pulling lots of energy from mom, and being a first time mom she is reacting…So we have heard to take some ginger in various forms, citrus in various forms and keep the food coming - even something I call “Pregnancy Toast” which is toast for Mrs. P, before she get’s out of bed. That seems to help.

Any other suggestions for morning sickness?

Also, another hard question that is becoming ever more present:
Why do Dr’s appear to get offended when we bring up home birth and utilizing a midwife? The doc mentioned safety and how unsafe a homebirth is, but Mrs. P and I are quite aware people and have done a lot of research. There is a Business to being born and we are quite aware of that. We also understand that there are risks to home birth, and Mrs.P may have complications that force us to be at the Hospital - but there is also a chance everything will be fine and we can labor and deliver at home. The Docs don’t seem to understand that.

For now that is about it -WOW a new dad! :slight_smile: SO PSYCHED!!

Personal choice of course, but I for one wouldn’t consider home birth. My daughter’s delivery was fairly fraught and I was extremely glad to be in the same place as all the experts!. We are now expecting number 2 and will certainly be at a hospital for the happy occasion.

Oh, and Congrats! Start stocking up on sleep now!

Yes, the risks are certain, and we are not 100% committed to a home birth, we are just looking at options. Luckily our insurance company let’s the Midwife be present for the birth in the Hosp. if needed.

Congratulations to you both.

May I ask why you desire a home birth? I myself would rather my young’un be born in a sterile environment where all the tools, equipment, and specialists are available should a problem arise.

All 4 of mine were born in a giant bathtub with a midwife attending. No problems. If you get someone qualified and take the normal precautions, it will certainly be fine.

As for morning sickness, the only cure I ever found was time. For 3 of mine it got better with time, with one it lasted the whole 9 months.


Also worth reading The Skeptical OB blog which is written by an OB that tries to educate people about the potential dangers of home birth (although she has stated that she supports allowing people to choose to do homebirth, she feels that most people aren’t fully educated on the dangers).
The business aspects to being born apply to midwives too, don’t forget. Everyone in this world is out to make money.

Nobody can guarantee that even a low risk healthy mom will have a complication free birth, and there is always that chance of an emergency where minutes could make the difference between life or death for mom or baby. For those reasons, I personally would never have a homebirth.

We have done an extensive amount of research on home birth and have found just as many pros as cons, being people who put a certain amount of gravity on having a choice and being as organic as we can, we want to have a choice as to whether we have medication, who is in the room, how we labor, what happens when the baby comes out [meaning stay connected to the umbilical for a few minutes instead of an immediate sever. We live in a area where home births are prevalent and midwives are many…we believe in a spiritual journey as well as a physical one and if given the choice we would want to have the baby at home and be able to mark the occasion for both baby and momma as a threshold or rite of passage for both.

Sterility is a modern convenience and one that can help with the spread of germs etc…but our house isn’t germ laden and the fear-factor for us is not superseding the wont to have a choice and deliver at home. No judgements, both my wife and I were born in hospitals, but we don’t feel we need to or HAVE to deliver a baby at the hospital. There is a choice as of right now.

I had a homebirth, and we had complications that could have been tragic. The fact that we both survived is pure luck because once we all realized there was trouble there was no time to get to a hospital and nothing to do but keep going and hope.

I’m sure plenty of people have had really wonderful experiences with homebirth but I don’t think I’d do it again.

What I would do is labor at home for as long as possible and then meet my midwife in the birthing center to have the baby. In retrospect I’ve realized that my wanting a positive birth experience doesn’t trump the safe birth of my child.

I’d be very cautious of a homebirth. Many of my girlfriends have had emergency c-sections when their baby went into fetal distress - this is after having healthy pregnancies and seemed to be good candidates for natural childbirth. One didn’t have a c-section, but then was wisked off to surgery herself to save her own life. One has a child with CP because intervention wasn’t quick enough (she was never a good candidate for anything other than a c-section and rejected the recommended c-section, but that is a whole different story about how ignoring your doctors advice in favor of the “birth experience” and blogs that tell you how much doctors lie is a bad idea).

Remember that OBs deliver hundreds of babies, and they see the happy uncomplicated ones. But the ones that stick with them are the tragedies. And that they can’t tell who is going to go through a problem free labor and delivery off the status of the pregnancy itself.

Have a midwife and a doula. Try going natural and medication free (I’d rather rip my own face off than go through an unmedicated labor again, but if your wife is game, go for it). But have the safety net of an operating room available on a moments notice.

(Besides, homebirth is messy).

And goldfish crackers or oyster crackers throughout the day. Always keep a little something in your stomach to work on.

I wonder what the stats are on home-births attended by Certified Nurse Midwives vs. hospital births? I’ve looked around a little bit, and I’m having trouble finding clear and unbiased stats on this question.

Palo Verde will! After all, it worked for her!

(all bolding mine)

How do you take precautions for difficulties during the birth process? Probably by doing it at an actual hospital, not a large bathtub. The problem is that most of the time, things go fine, but when things don’t, you won’t have time to rush to the hospital. Why would you gamble with your baby’s safety?

I don’t want to sound like I’m belittling your thinking, but you don’t need to do anything to mark a birth as a threshold or rite of passage for any of you. All of my children were delivered via Cesarean in a sterile hospital and the environment had no impact on the emotion of the moment.

We had our first baby a little less than 3 months ago. We used midwives who my wife has been seeing for years and who had privileges at a connecting hospital so there wasn’t ever a problem with their presense. They specifically talked us out of a home birth, which my wife was keen on, because they said that you really have no idea what’s going to happen the first time and it’s just a lot safer to be in an environment where they can immediately deal with anything that arises.

With the midwife, rather than the doctor, we were able to set our own pace for things that happened and never felt rushed through our whole experience. So, honestly, I’d say that if you just have a good midwife who has worked with the hospital staff on hand, that’s way more than half the battle right there.

Time. Seriously, if she’s out of the first trimester, the morning sickness/nausea/food aversions ought to calm down a lot. My wife’s at 17 weeks, and it’s calmed down a lot for her. Ginger things helped some, and so did eating small meals frequently instead of larger ones.

Get ready for strange aches and pains though- the second trimester is when the real growing and body changes start, and it apparently is kind of painful at times.

And about the hospital… look at it this way- you’re excited now, and you’ll be even more excited when the baby comes. Do you really want to run the risks associated with the home birth at that point? I sure don’t, and neither does my wife.

Hi Phlosphr… I am pregnant with my first child. I’m 37 weeks pregnant today (full term! w00t!). In the first trimester, I also read Ricki Lake, Ina May, and all of that. While I never considered a home birth (because it’s my first time and I’m scared), I was definitely gung-ho on the no-meds, midwife, all of that. I am seeing a hospital-affiliated midwife instead of an OB for my prenatal care, and if the delivery is normal, the midwife will attend it too.

Let me make a few observations for you; things that I gradually realized over the course of my pregnancy.

  1. If you have a good hospital, it will be enlightened about the advantages of water births, laboring in water, squatting bars, birthing balls, trying to go without meds, avoiding episiotomies, private rooms with adjustable lights/music/temperature, delivering in any position, heparin locks, intermittent monitoring, ALL of that. I have been nothing but impressed by the care and facilities available to me. I don’t see ANY of the cold clinical evilness that Ricki and Ina told me I would see. The L&D ward of my hospital is a LOVELY place.

  2. As the pregnancy progresses and you begin to feel movement, see movement, and have ultrasounds… and as the weeks and months drag by and your wife trades one discomfort for another… the feeling of just how much you’ve put into this little person’s safety and well-being will grow on you, and the idea of risking the ultimate outcome–a healthy baby and healthy mom–will begin to weigh on you more. The idea of a home birth, and even of forgoing the care of an MD (like I have), will begin to seem more weighty. The prospect of an induced labor or c-section, if it’s for the good of the baby, begins to seem less horrible. Remember that you can change your mind about the birth plan at ANY time.

  3. While you’re reading up on home birth, please be sure to read some sources that aren’t specifically advocating for it. There was a point at which I realized that EVERY information source about pregnancy/L&D/parenting is biased and manipulative; nobody is fair and balanced about this subject. Ricki and Ina’s viewpoints are both extreme ones. They’re also out of date, and not liable for the welfare of your family.

  4. You sound like you’re being an awesome partner in this pregnancy (morning toast in bed? heavens!), so you probably don’t need to hear this, but I’m going to say it anyway: try not to pressure your wife in any way shape or form. She’s the one who has to actually have this baby, and during pregnancy, the mother tends to be far more protective and conservative about the baby’s welfare than the dad. Trust her instincts and try not to make her feel that you’ll judge her or be disappointed in WHATEVER course she decides to take.

I had horrible complications at my planned homebirth that resulted in a terrifying ambulance ride and an immediate surgery, with a baby who was about five minutes away from death or brain damage.

I’d still do a homebirth if I had any desire to be pregnant again. What happened to me was a fluke, and the midwives (and I, thanks to a LOT of reading) were trained in how to deal with it and did our jobs perfectly. We lived a minute and a half away from the best hospital in the area. We took no longer to get into surgery than I would have had it happened at the hospital.

Doctors don’t like homebirths because they can’t. If they say it’s fine and something bad happens, they can get included in the lawsuit.

Do midwives use solid science these days? Cuz’ when I think midwife, I think “Hippy/wiccan type” that does crazy stuff like using crystals and casting chants or whatever. Like that bit the OP mentioned with the ginger. Any proof that actually works?

Personally, I’d be too scared to have a home birth. I just don’t think I could live with myself if something did happen to the baby. Especially if I did it under the arrogant thought that a midwife and home birth is more safe than being in a hospital with folks who have spent a significant amount of their lives towards higher education.

Congrats on the new baby.

Pretty much every study I’ve seen says that for low-risk women (the only ones who should consider homebirth) the safety of home vs. hospital births are the same.

Here they did a large meta analysis of many studies on the issues and concluded “RESULTS: Perinatal mortality was not significantly different in the two groups. CONCLUSION: Home birth is an acceptable alternative to hospital confinement for selected pregnant women, and leads to reduced medical interventions.”

Opinions vary, we understand that.

Our Midwife has delivered 1500 babies at home, there is a certain amount of trust we put on her, and when asked about how she feels about a hospital we really like her answer. If we labor at home and it begins to look as if we may need the birthing center, then we all head to the birthing center, if not happy baby is delivered at home.

We are open to everything, but having a choice is important to us.

Here’s another large study which looked at over 500,000 women.

Results  No significant differences were found between planned home and planned hospital birth (adjusted relative risks and 95% confidence intervals: intrapartum death 0.97 (0.69 to 1.37), intrapartum death and neonatal death during the first 24 hours 1.02 (0.77 to 1.36), intrapartum death and neonatal death up to 7 days 1.00 (0.78 to 1.27), admission to neonatal intensive care unit 1.00 (0.86 to 1.16).

Conclusions  This study shows that planning a home birth does not increase the risks of perinatal mortality and severe perinatal morbidity among low-risk women, provided the maternity care system facilitates this choice through the availability of well-trained midwives and through a good transportation and referral system.

Have your baby wherever you want. I have nothing against hospital births. But in the spirit of fighting ignorance, but studies don’t show that they are safer.