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To have been angry when in labour?

(93 Posts)
Bearsinmotion Sun 31-Jan-16 11:13:14

Because apparently DP was "embarrassed"...

DS is nearly 1 now, and the whole birth experience still bothers me. DD is 4. I have a medical condition that is rare in women of child bearing age, so my first pregnancy was heavily monitored. In the end she was induced, ended up with an epidural, drip and then helped out by the consultant I'd seen throughout pregnancy. It was well managed and not in the least traumatic.

I was booked for an induction on my due date for DS. Plan was the same as DD. But, I went in to labour the night before. Went to hospital, hung about for an hour then moved to delivery suite. My notes had a big sticker on to say high priority for anaesthetist, so he was alerted, but midwives checked and he was dealing with an emergency.

I found labour incredibly intense, and frankly terrifying. I blame myself in part - I was fixated on him being induced, like DD, and hadn't looked at anything about spontaneous labour. I think the midwife figured I had had one baby, so knew what was happening. But I felt completely lost and powerless. And in so, so much pain, with very short breaks between contractions.

After three hours I felt I was going mad. I begged DP and the midwife to help, but they just told me I was "doing well". The midwife made no suggestions at all, not to get off the bed, change position, anything like that. I was frightened, and yes, angry. I didn't shout at anyone, I do remember the midwife stepping out for some reason and saying to DP it wouldn't make much difference as she wasn't helping much anyway.

But the "coping" comments were what upset me. It trivialised how I felt. I wasn't coping. I really wasn't. i had no control, I couldn't do anything. And I pretty much would have done anything to make it stop. I felt like their comments refused to recognise that I wasn't coping. I wasn't ok.

In the end I had an epidural. As soon as the man arrived I felt I could cope, I knew what was happening, and the pain would be over soon. And it was. After that, I was calm, I was happy. DS arrived a few hours later, there was a minor tear (midwife did tell me if I had "pushed properly" I wouldn't have torn hmm).

So, I recently said to DP that if I had that experience with DC1, she would have been an only child. He was shocked, said it "wasn't that bad", that I should have "just got on with it", and that I was really angry, which was embarrassing.

This has really upset me. It's shown that I was right that he didn't understand what I was going through. Or that, actually, a lot of women do get angry in labour, it's a way of coping with the pain. So, was I unreasonable to be angry in labour? Or should I have just got on with it and not embarressed him?

WorraLiberty Sun 31-Jan-16 11:20:02

You were coping though. Labour is painful and you coped with the pain until the epidural.

The word coping wasn't used to trivialise how you were feeling, it was just descriptive, although I can understand why you felt you weren't coping at the time.

Your DP on the other hand sounds like he needs a bowling ball shoved up his arse, so he can shit it out and 'just get on with it' hmm

MiniCooperLover Sun 31-Jan-16 11:20:09

His feelings during the process of labour would be the absolute last thing on my mind !!! He was embarrassed ??!?!? What a nasty comment to make to you when you bore his child!

comedycentral Sun 31-Jan-16 11:22:42

Your OH sounds like an idiot, what on earth was he embarrassed for?!

Emeralli Sun 31-Jan-16 11:23:21

YANBU at all.

Your DH probably has no idea how intense the pain was, how it takes over mind and body. He is VU to say anything about feeling embarrassed!! He should be in awe of you for going through that hell.

I was angry and panicking most of my labour. I shouted at the midwives, screamed at them to 'let me go home' 'make it stop' 'get me an epidural' etc. The ansethestist was busy so I didn't get the epidural. I felt like I was losing my mind and kept hallucinating! I had diamorphine which did nothing for the pain. I kept shouting 'I'm dying!' and was oblivious to DH apart from biting him when he passed the gas and air!

As soon as baby was out I became 'same' again.

Next time I plan to hire a doula instead of having DH present. He tried his best but his 'helpful' comments during labour drove me up the wall!

Sometimesithinkimbonkers Sun 31-Jan-16 11:24:54

I think this is the problem with mum's who have had a planned labour.
Labour is incredibly painful.
You were coping well... The midwife told you this.... It was your anxiety because things were not going as planned.
I had 3 spontaneous labours and was lucky they were very quick .... I have a medical condition too which means this happens. I knew what to expect from natural labour so each one was easier. You didn't and you were stressed and angry. If you were making a huge fuss then I can see why your DH was embarrassed.
Either way .. You've got your beautiful baby .... What does it matter!!!! Don't stress the small stuff xx

TheCatsMeow Sun 31-Jan-16 11:25:25

Your DP is being a complete knob. I was angry throughout my whole pregnancy!

BibaDiba Sun 31-Jan-16 11:25:51

Your partner is the issue here.
I was furious in labour at the end, pushy bit. Absolutely raging. My mum was delivering me (she's a midwife I didn't just randomly let her, haha) and I was telling her to fuck off and get a doctor, get me the "epidural lady NOWWW" "STOP TOUCHING MEEE". In hindsight I'm totally embarrassed but she's used to it and I was in bloody agony. Afterwards I felt sort of in shock at how painful it was for me and how I really wanted to just die then because at least it wouldn't hurt anymore. Dramatic but hey ho, it's different for everyone.
With my first I had an epidural pretty early so I never experienced that late stage pain and it was a shock to my system so I totally lost it. My partner wasn't embarrassed, he's really proud of me and yours should be too! Don't allow him to feel you weren't coping. You were coping! You did it! Tell him he can have an opinion on how bad it is when he has pushed a baby out of his mangina.

frumpet Sun 31-Jan-16 11:26:01

I think anger , fear and frustration are common during the process of labour , so no YANBU . Plus you did just get on with it , you had no choice did you ? You couldn't very well get up and decide you would pop back later when the nice man was ready for you wink

ricketytickety Sun 31-Jan-16 11:28:33

Bollocks to what he feels!!! Sounds to me you coped brilliantly. Getting cross when your needs aren't acknowledged is not a bad thing. He will have no idea how much pain and fear you were in. Sounds like he lacks empathy for your situation. Have you explained the fear you felt and the pain?

ollieplimsoles Sun 31-Jan-16 11:28:51

Id be embarrassed that my oh was such a selfish prick while his child was being born tbh...

shoofly Sun 31-Jan-16 11:31:08

Honestly I think that's a horrible thing for your husband to say. The midwife also seems pretty pointless.

DS1 was induced at term +13 & it was horrific. Partly down to an uncommunicative, off hand midwife who felt I was coping. I was terrified and in pain with no pain relief, and had no clue what was happening. Thankfully the shift changed and a midwife who actually spoke to me, got me to change position, got me gas and air and explained what was happening. She couldn't change all of the horrific stuff that happened subsequently, but at least I felt that someone was aware of me!

I don't know what to say that might help, but just wanted to say I get what you are feeling and your feelings are valid. Anger is reasonable in the circumstances!

AliceScarlett Sun 31-Jan-16 11:31:19

YANBU at all. How invalidating for you sad I'd be fucking fuming. You were caught by suorisey, vulnerable, in pain and not only did no one recognise and help at the time you have also been criticised afterwards. Its OK to be angry OP.

DH may never be able to empathise and tell you what you want to hear, give that to yourself.

Well done you for having 2 babies, in the circumstances I think you did great.

ricketytickety Sun 31-Jan-16 11:33:46

And the midwives know about pain/fear/anger. So they won't have thought badly. Her pushing comment was a bit snarky but she might be de-sensitized to the whole thing. She maybe didn't understand your level of fear - your dh should have explained what happened to you before and that would have clarified things for you. One of my midwives rubbed me up the wrong way - she was a bit patronising. But she was at the end of her shift and I was in pain and so I might have taken it the wrong way, she was tired and might have run out of patience. We're all human!

Do you think maybe you need a debrief about the labour?

ghostyslovesheep Sun 31-Jan-16 11:37:35

your DH was insensitive sad

I understand totally having had a birth that resulted in PTSD - I felt totally ignored and invalidated

You where NOT coping - you where in pain and in shock and you wanted the people around you to do something to help you - not to dismiss your pain and fear

Childbirth IS painful yes but there are different levels of pain and we all have our tipping point - some of us reach it in labour others don't


Embolio Sun 31-Jan-16 11:40:05

He was embarrassed??!!hmm tell him to dry up! He doesn't get to comment on how bad it was or otherwise seeing as he wasn't the one actually giving birth! So what if you got angry?

I had very intense labour with ds1- back to back and basically a continuous agonising contraction. I think I told them to kill me at one point because I couldn't take it any more! I too had the comments about 'not pushing properly' and 'don't you want this baby out' hmm but it turned out ds was actually stuck and needed keilands forceps in theatre.

BuyMeAPony Sun 31-Jan-16 11:41:26

I suppose the thing is that he didn't know what to expect with the second labour either and was probably also fixated on an induction. He still shouldn't have said that.

People also have different pain thresholds and the person above who could understand his embarrassment is also BU.

NeedsAsockamnesty Sun 31-Jan-16 11:49:11

The sole point to being someone's birthing partner is to help them and often this means being their 'translator' with medical staff.

This is why I think the fashion for dads to be the automatic birthing partner should change and women should feel safe to choose whoever they feel will best support them. Great if it is the dad but often it won't be

ridemesideways Sun 31-Jan-16 11:51:26

You were not supported properly. Women often feel traumatised when they feel that they were not listened to. What happened to you was unacceptable flowers

Bearsinmotion Sun 31-Jan-16 11:54:11

You were coping though. Labour is painful and you coped with the pain until the epidural.

You were coping well... The midwife told you this....

With all due respect, how do you know? What does it mean to be "coping"? I was close to ripping the monitors out and leaving. I wasn't rational. I would have done anything to get out of there. I hated my DP, I hated myself, and frankly, I hated the baby, which in the long term is something I am struggling to deal with.

What would I have been like if I was not coping? What would I have had to do to cross that line? How would DP, the midwife have known and what would they have done? Because chances are, I would have tried to do it.

Yes, I know, I am still angry about it and should let it go. But I genuinely don't understand how what I experienced showed I was coping.

outputgap Sun 31-Jan-16 11:57:06

Jesus H Christ. What's wrong with being angry, faced with the two people who are meant to support and assist you in one of life's biggest events just ignoring your fear and agony? Fuck that.

Bearsinmotion Sun 31-Jan-16 11:57:11

The sole point to being someone's birthing partner is to help them and often this means being their 'translator' with medical staff.

The thing is, this is what he did with DD. He was amazing, memorised all my notes, made me laugh to distract me from the epidural going in. I don't know why it was all so different second time round.

ridemesideways Sun 31-Jan-16 11:58:40

Just to clarify, I'm saying that as a birth professional. You were asking the midwife for assistance and she did not respond. This is against the midwives code and you would have grounds for complaint if you wanted to.

To those saying that OP was coping and should be grateful. You are wrong and riding roughshod over her feelings. OP - ignore them.

WorraLiberty Sun 31-Jan-16 11:58:54

I suppose passing out would mean you couldn't cope with the pain? Or some other serious issue.

Either way, labour is a very painful thing and you coped with that pain.

Tbh I wouldn't overthink it any more.

Your DP's attitude is where the problem lies and not with whether you felt you coped with the pain or not.

Bearsinmotion Sun 31-Jan-16 11:59:33

ghosty, that's it exactly. And others - thank you for showing me I am not alone!

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