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AIBU about "Birth after Caesarean" clinic.

(216 Posts)
Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 16:45:23

I had an elective section for my second child after previous traumatic birth. At booking in appointment for current pregnancy, I asked the community midwife about elective section this time, and she said she would refer me to consultant again, and did, to same consultant I had last time, and I got an appointment letter through to see said consultant in September.

Today, I had a letter from the "Birth after Caesarean" team giving me an appointment in August to "discuss options for women considering vaginal births aftersection or planned sections". I was confused as to what this clinic was, as I already have an appointment to see the consultant to discuss this. So I rang up to enquire. The hospital midwife I spoke to was quite cagey about what the appointment was for and said it was to "discuss it". So I said "Well, I already have an appointment to discuss the elective section I want with Mrs X (consultant) in September - won't she go through it all with me again?". At which the midwife said "Well, I'll cancel this appointment then, as it's clear to me that we won't be able to change your mind, so there's no point"!!

AIBU to be a bit upset about this and think that they should be more honest about what this clinic is for, as it is plainly to try and talk people out of having planned sections, and not to discuss "Options for women considering vaginal birth after section OR PLANNED SECTIONS"?

softhedgehog Thu 30-Jul-15 16:50:16

Some midwives have a real bee in their bonnet that CS are evil - to the point of being dangerous at times. Others are sensible and pragmatic. You obviously found one in the first camp. Ignore it.

SantanaLopez Thu 30-Jul-15 16:52:34

I think it will be sent to every pregnant woman with a previous C-section, I wouldn't get upset about it at all.

LeChien Thu 30-Jul-15 16:53:43

Plenty of people aren't aware that you can have a vaginal birth after a CS, so maybe this clinic was to raise awareness for this?

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 16:56:55

I'm sure it is sent to all previous c section women, but it did leave me feeling upset (which is my issue - any thought of giving birth vaginally still leaves me tearful after the birth of my first child nearly 15 years ago; the section three years ago was very healing in many ways. I took all those years to even consider having another child, and the consultant I saw with DS2 who I am seeing again was fantastic).

But why aren't they honest about what this clinic is for? I am really glad I phoned up now, as it seems that if I had attended the appointment it would have been very upsetting indeed.

bumbleymummy Thu 30-Jul-15 16:57:54

I wouldn't take it like that. As LeChien said, many people may not be aware that they can have a vaginal birth after a CS. Also, some women may actuakky want a VB but be too scared by their previous experience and the clinic might give them the support they need. It's probably just about helping people to make informed choices.

SantanaLopez Thu 30-Jul-15 16:59:45

But they have been honest. Birth after C-section, to discuss options.... it's very clear what they mean.

I hope you get on well with the consultant and you have a lovely birth.

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:01:12

But the letter says it is to discuss options "for women who are considering vaginal birth after caesarean section OR PLANNED CAESAREAN SECTION" when it is actually a clinic to encourage VBACs. Why don't they say this? And why did it take quite a while on the phone for this to become clear?

SantanaLopez Thu 30-Jul-15 17:03:52

You are putting the emphasis in the wrong place- it is after ANY past section, elective or otherwise.

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:07:44

No, no, it says to discuss options for women who are considering vbac or planned section after previous section. Except they don't want to discuss the subsequent planned sections, they want to encourage vbacs. As became clear on the phone. And then I googled and the hospital midwives have won an award for this clinic which was set up in 2013 for their work in reducing the elective c section rate at this hospital.

And the midwife cancelled my appointment when I said I definitely 100 per cent wanted another elcs as their was "no point". So they don't want to talk about further sections, do they?

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:08:48

there was no point, not their.

bumbleymummy Thu 30-Jul-15 17:10:11

But what's wrong with them trying to help women to have VBACs? The option is offered for you to talk about it because some women may change their mind. You said you wouldn't and they didn't pressure you.

SantanaLopez Thu 30-Jul-15 17:10:13


Is it really worth such a fuss?

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:10:20

I do see how my paraphrasing of the letter was unclear. I will photograph the letter if someone tells me how to post a photo on here and anyone's interested in reading it.

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:12:59

It is worth such a fuss to me, yes. It made me really upset after the conversation as my fears about being pushed to have a vaginal birth resurfaced; I have been trying to supress them. I did say upthread that I realise this is an issue I have. Hence my planned section last time.

I would have been happy to go along to an appointment to talk about another planned section with midwives at the clinic though. It's been three years since the last; that might have been good to be reminded of how it all happens.

StillStayingClassySanDiego Thu 30-Jul-15 17:14:18

Try not to get too upset about this, go for the birth that you want, ignore the letter.

For what it's worth, I had a VBAC with ds3 and it was my best birth. I was scared I might rupture [irrational pregnant fears] but it was absolutely perfect.

hopeful31yrs Thu 30-Jul-15 17:18:31

I was booked into "birth choice" "clinic" after I expressed my concerns over my mother and grandmother both having difficult births - all either instrumented or c sections due to inability to push out baby (? Pelvic shape). Both had a still birth related to this. I went to discuss my "choice" where I was taken into the consultant midwife's office (not a clinic at all) and told categorically not. "You can't choose!" I was told and was then subjected to being told off like a child. When I burst into tears frustrated I was asked what my concerns were and then told it was hereditary and I shouldn't be concerned but if I wanted a c section she would send me to a consultant who wouldn't ask any questions and just give it to me. I said I'd come for a discussion not to either railroad someone (or be railroaded) and was booked in with another consultant.

Ultimately DD got stuck and I didn't progress despite 2 hrs pushing and her oxygen sats dropping and had to have forceps - what I ultimately didnt want.

I am a medical professional so it was an eye opener for me regarding how some people in the same profession are working.

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:26:21

Sorry you had a bad experience, hopeful, and glad your vbac was good for you StillStaying.

This letter has really upset me, I realise most people would say disproportionately, but the letter and the phone call were dishonest. Why not call this clinic what it is? A clinic to encourage and discuss VBAC. And why not say this on the phone when I was asking about it, not skate round the issue for five minutes or more before telling the truth (abruptly)?

Had it been an honest letter, I would have just called up and turned the appointment down as it would not be helpful for me.

crumblybiscuits Thu 30-Jul-15 17:27:08

YABU, I know plenty of women who would love to have the opportunity to have a VBAC but don't feel they have the support/encouragement. It's better this way than when they refuse to allow VBAC. All you had to do was be firm over the phone and they left you alone.

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:29:29

BUT why not call it what it is??? I am glad that women who want VBACS can discuss it, or indeed those who are considering it but unsure. SO why pretend this clinic is not a clinic to encourage VBAC over planned section?

Suzietwo Thu 30-Jul-15 17:33:33

why not just not go?

i went to one after my first section and i was pro vbac

i was invited to one after my second (because its procedure) and forgot to go. the midwife laughed when i told her i had been invited along as it was so pointless (2 failed vaginal births for failure to progress).

Caff2 Thu 30-Jul-15 17:35:55

I'm not going. As I said, they cancelled the appointment when they realised I was not open to VBAC. I would have gone had I not phoned up to query it as I already have an appointment with a consultant to discuss the issue. Because the letter said it was for women who were considering vaginal birth OR another section. Which it's not.

crumblybiscuits Thu 30-Jul-15 17:37:10

I assume it is to discuss all of your options though. I don't think they were exactly going to sit you down and force you to change your mind but there are probably bits of information they would like to share with people before they make a final decision. Vaginal births will mostly always be preferable when it comes to giving birth from the purely medical side and people probably assume they don't have much choice but to have another section. I just really don't think you can assume what it is from a phone call. By saying you won't change your mind I think the lady was simply saying you have made your final decision so there is no options to discuss.

SantanaLopez Thu 30-Jul-15 17:37:21

Seriously, it's not worth stressing over. Shred it therapeutically, tear it into a million bits and let it go.

AcademicOwl Thu 30-Jul-15 17:39:33

You could read the 'planned sections' as being previous 'planned sections' (ie last pregnancy); or you could read it as 'planned' for this one due to breech presentation, etc. they might also discuss options like ECV, etc... There is a need to support women in making choices; and ideally, vaginal birth is a good option for the majority. (Although appreciate not for some; & choice should be supported too).
Bottom line; don't let it upset you. Honest smile I'm pregnant too and sometimes feel that things that wouldn't normally upset me do more at the mo (& did in previous pregs too).
Go all frozen on it "let it go!"

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