Vagina Labor Goodness.

Are there any recorded instances of someone trying to have sex with a woman while she was in labor? I feel it would have to be someone a bit off their rocker, but considering how many women have gone into labor in the history of mankind, it seems like a distinct possibility. Is it even possible to do so?

I’m not so sure about “recorded instances”, but (barring medical reasons) you can have sex up until your water breaks. Women in very early labor might not even know they’re having contractions, although this might not meet your definition of “labor.”

If it is very early labour, what Avarie said. If it is very late labour the baby would be in the way. In between… I suppose it is possible, but probably not very satisfying. Even if the woman consented to such an act, I imagine she’d be somewhat preoccupied.

“Labor” can last a long time, and the early stages aren’t necessarily painful or terribly uncomfortable. So I suppose someone might have sex in that time. Also, it’s a commonly held beleif that sex can spur the onset of labor, so it’s not far out to think that someone would be having sex at that time.
If by “labor” you mean the latter stages in which (most) women are in pain if they don’t use medication, I think it extremely unlikely that the woman would consent to intercourse at that time. Not only would she most assuredly not be in the mood, it would probably ick her out to the extreme when she’s trying to deliver a child into the world through that orifice. So if happened, I’d venture it was rape of one sort or another.
I don’t know about recorded instances, but if you’re wondering if it has ever happened, then given the number of people who have existed since the beginning of time and the depraved nature of many of them, the answer almost certainly is yes.

Jeff Foxworthy has, as part of his act, a description of his Lamaze class where they’re warned by the instructor not to have sex after the water breaks. I remember this from my class, too.

His point, and I agree, is that they wouldn’t have had this warning if somebody hadn’t tried it. Especially, says I, given that it’s common knowlege that having sex can increase the chance of inducing labor (natural pitosins in the semen??). If it can increase the chance of labor, no doubt thought somebody, then it could shorten labor as well.

By coincidence, an article today from CNN:
Sex close to due date may cause spontaneous labor, study finds

<disclaimer>Anything I’m about to say is froma purely objective standpoint and not to be taken as an interest in or endorsement of any such practices</disclaimer>

I’ve heard this quoted before, and it seems remarkably close-minded. It implicitly reads “have sex” as “have penetrative vaginal sex”. Is there any medical reason to avoid other kinds of sexual activity after the water breaks? Anal sex? Oral sex (with the woman either receiving or giving)? etc, etc, etc…

Maybe it’s just residual from having dated a Wesleyan student, but it bugs me when “sex” is automatically interpreted as vaginal intercourse, as if everything else is somehow less.

A wish to not get slugged by your wife would be number one.

Did anybody else open this thread expecting to read about another bad kanji tattoo?

“So, how did you lose your eye?”

“You’re not going to believe it.”

I repeat: medical reason. To be agonizingly expicit: there’s evidently good medical reason to avoid penetrative vaginal sex after the water breaks, thus the oft-quoted statement. I’m asking about the answer for other sexual practices.

But it’s ok to have sex after coffee breaks, right?

I’m curious about what the good medical reasons to avoid intercourse after the water breaks are, personally. Is it that the baby could get jizz in its eye or something?

The problem is damage caused by one soft head ramming into another soft head.

/rimshot

Would you expect the OBGYN to wash his hands before delivery? You can’t think why introducing foreign germs into the vagina via vaginal sex during childlabor is a bad idea?

Yeah, but why specifically after the water breaks? Wouldn’t the germs still be there if you had sex early on in labor too? And aren’t there germs hanging around anyway?

Unless maybe the water breaking washes everything out in preparation for the baby’s birth. I could certainly see that being a useful effect that you wouldn’t want to ruin by reintroducing foreign materials into the vagina after.

Chorpler, the water is the amniotic fluid in which the baby has been floating. The baby is in the amniotic sac in the womb. Basically the kid is in a plastic bag inside a meat bag. The plastic bag is a barrier against germs (not total, but it helps). Opening the plastic bag is what lets the germs in. It’s just coincidental that it lets the water out.

The germs that a penis can carry up to the baby aren’t all penile. The mom’s vagina is fairly close to her anus, and germs that have been moving across the surface of the skin can be picked up by the penis and carried into the vagina. If there is no barrier between the penis and these germs, the kid can get a very nasty infection. Not just of its eye. Lungs is a bad one.

The typical “ascending infections” that hurt or kill babies in the womb (infections that come up from below, via the vagina) are infections found in either shit or skin. E. coli, shigella, and the dreaded Group B strep. Although having your amniotic fluid intact inside the sac isn’t a guaranteed protection against ascending infections, it’s a hell of a lot better than no barrier at all. That’s why we have the abbreviation PROM for “premature rupture of membranes”. It’s a big problem when a mom who is months away from birth has her water break. It means serious antibiotics (possibly by hospitalization) and may result in premature delivery of the baby - either by docs, to save it, or by the body, which can force it out in response to the infection.

What else is there besides “ascending infections”? Infections that the mom catches (like when you catch a cold or flu, or pneumonia or whatever) that go round and round her bloodstream (sepsis), cross the placenta, and go up the umbilical cord to the baby. Those are really bad.

Wow, thanks for that incredibly detailed reply, gabriela. That’s some pretty scary stuff. This is one great board for ignorance fighting, that’s for sure!

Although, just so I don’t sound too stupid, I should perhaps mention that I did know THIS part already – I was just speculating that perhaps a side effect of the water breaking was to clean out the birth canal for the baby.