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To have DD at my homebirth?

(27 Posts)
FourForYouGlenCoco Sun 08-May-16 10:12:18

Just that really. DD is 3, turning 4 in August. DC2 due end of July. DD was born at home, very easy, very straightforward. The plan has always been to homebirth this next one. DH thinks DD will be traumatised if she stays for the birth and we should call family to come and get her as soon as I go into labour. I think that's ridiculous (not least because if it kicks off in the night she will be asleep for most of it anyway!) and that she should stay at home and we'll see how we get on - if she or I find it stressful or distressing, we'll call for her to be picked up.

Possibly relevant - labour with DD was v quick in the end, 2.5 hours active labour. I was pretty quiet and didn't do a lot of howling, screaming etc. Have never sheltered DD from the realities of life (she has been to my grandad's funeral, she knows that babies come out of mummies' bits, etc) and she isn't prone to scaring/worrying.

DISCLAIMER before anyone starts - I am not an idiot. Obviously if things change before labour, or go wrong during, I will be straight off into hospital. Baby's and my health are top priority in all of this. I also know that first labours don't necessarily predict second labours. I am currently very low risk and have no reason at the moment to suspect anything will go amiss.

So AIBU to think DD might as well stay at home rather than packing her off the instant I feel a twinge? Or is DH right and I'm completely in the wrong??

Petal12 Sun 08-May-16 10:23:13

I had a home birth, my daughter was only 2 at the time though. I was happy to have her there initially but I have long labours so my mum ended up picking her and taking her home with her. I didn't want her to go and we were both crying but with hindsight it was absolutely the best thing to do. My labour went on for another 36 hours and I needed my husband to help me. We lived in a small house then and I was all over the place, couldn't get comfy, whinging etc. In the nicest possible way I think she would've gotten bored and then got under our feet. Instead she spent a lovely day with my family being spoilt and came home the next morning to a new baby brother. I think what I'm ultimately saying is perhaps be flexible. Have someone on standby to collect her in case labour goes on longer or not as you think. Good luck!

lilydaisyrose Sun 08-May-16 10:24:28

DD was here for DS's labour - she was 22 months. I had planned to farm her out and had a wee rota but I laboured in the evening (7.30-10pm) so it wasn't necessary. If it hadn't been in the evening or overnight then she would have been elsewhere though as she needed a lit if attention still as she was so young plus we had an enormous pool taking up most of space in the living room!!

I'm now pg with DC3 and not sure what we'll do with our 9yr and 7yr old. I think they might be frightened plus we have a small house with already 4 adults at the birth (DH, me and 2 midwives) - so 2 big kids might be pushing it, space wise!

Newmanwannabe Sun 08-May-16 10:26:34

My DD was 4 1/2 for my home birth. Plan was,my parents would be there for DD and keep her occupied, and she'd see the baby once born. We thought she could cut the cord with DH. I went into labour as bed time was nearing. DS was born 2 hours later and we could not wake up DD for the life of us. She was deeply asleep.

So first thing in the morning when she woke she met her new brother. She obviously was just not meant to be around. My midwife said most of her home births tend to get cranking when DC in bed... Makes sense that you can relax more and the birthing hormones flow better.

Ps. I wasn't worried about labouring around her as I am not a screamy birther.

Pooseyfrumpture Sun 08-May-16 10:59:50

I've had 3 home births. I laboured during the day with the first and couldn't stand DC around me. Laboured during the night for HB2, DC arrived while the others were having breakfast in front of CBeebies. Having breakfast in front of the telly was so amazing that they did not budge and missed it all grin For HB3 - also during the night, they all woke up - it got complicated so there was a lot of people coming in and out, but it was soooo boring and they were slowing me down so they were all put back to bed. For both HB2&3, I didn't start labouring until DC were in bed. And both babies were born at breakfast time, like it was a deadline to be done by grin

whojamaflip Sun 08-May-16 11:04:08

I intended to have dd (3) and ds (2) at the hb of DC4 but when I went into labour they both got really distressed at the sight of me in pain so dh arranged for a neighbour to come and get them - in hindsight I would have arranged childcare earlier - ds was particularly upset and he was very clingy for quite a while after sad

adagio Sun 08-May-16 11:05:34

I didn't homebirth, mainly as I am literally 5 mins from hospital MLU with a pool in every room so didn't see the need. I am quiet in labour and was for both, and was faster for #2 than my first.

My 3yo would have been fine at the birth I think, not that it was relevant as little ones are not allowed in hospital delivery and in the event I went into labour at bedtime (my bedtime, not the 3yo!) went to hospital via a friends to drop DD off at 1am had the baby 2.30 and was home again by 6 (am).

Good luck with whatever you decide 😀💐

Pooka Sun 08-May-16 11:05:48

I rang my mother when my waters broke at 9pm. Decided to play it by ear - kids were asleep. Had ds at 11pm. Dd (age 6) woke up about an hour later, after I'd had a shower, saw ds and then went back to sleep. Ds1 oblivious. Do rang my mum to tell her to stand down. All went beautifully.

If had kicked off in the day time I would definitely have got older 2 picked up though. Would rather have just been able to concentrate on the job at hand.

SearchingforSleep Sun 08-May-16 11:05:55

I had DC1 in hospital - medium length labour but 3 hour pushing stage with no screaming (!) DC2 was planned home birth with DC1 now aged 4.5 in the house but it was important to me to have my parents here too so that if I needed to go into hospital in an emergency, we could just concentrate on that rather than trying to sort out childcare on top of an already stressful situation.

In the event, my labour felt totally different second time round, was lightning quick and I was embarrassingly loud. blush If DC1 had been awake, I think she would have found it very distressing. Fortunately, she did unbelievably sleep through the whole thing so all went well in the end. I'm not sure I would make the same decision to have her in the house again - I am now very aware of how different your own labours can be. Although in the event, my daughter was blissfully unaware, my poor parents were pretty traumatised by being here in order to care for my daughter if necessary.

Lots of luck with whatever you decide - hope all goes smoothly.

MarkRuffaloCrumble Sun 08-May-16 11:14:02

I had two home births, mainly as I didn't have anyone to look after the older ones.
DS2 was born in the middle of the night, so we woke up DS1 to introduce him to his new little brother then he went back to sleep as I had a bath etc.

DD was born while the other two were busy playing on the computer in the other room. It was pretty quick all in, contractions started about 2pm and she was born at 5.30pm. The midwife only just arrived in time, as it was all a bit sudden in the end, so if I'd been going to hospital she'd have probably been born in a lay by!

MarkRuffaloCrumble Sun 08-May-16 11:15:01

Back up plan if I'd had to go to hospital was XH looking after the DCs and me doing it alone, which wasn't ideal, but I was ok with it if it came to that.

MarkRuffaloCrumble Sun 08-May-16 11:18:25

From your DD's side she might feel a bit left out if she's sent off just before the baby arrives. Personally I think it is lovely for older ones to be around and be among the first to meet the new little one in a casual way, without all the big build up to having to come home and find them already there and settled in. Obviously if you are a screamer or if things start to look tricky then a back up plan would be good, but otherwise I'd say that if she is able to entertain herself and isn't the type to worry, no reason why she shouldn't be there.

AllMyBestFriendsAreMetalheads Sun 08-May-16 11:24:41

I had a HB with my 2nd child, when my eldest was 3/almost 4. As it turned out, I went into labour properly in the evening when she went to bed and gave birth a few hours later whilst she was asleep. She woke up about 2 hours after baby was born.

I had a number of plans of where she would go depending on time of day/whether she was at nursery or not/how she felt about being there/if I had to transfer, all involving friends and our parents.

I was prepared for her to be there if she was awake and wanted to be there, we talked about what would happen during the birth. There are also some home birth videos on youtube if you wanted to watch those with your DD beforehand. We also told her that there would be MWs here, and that they might not be people we've seen before as at the time she could be a bit nervous around new people.

tobysmum77 Sun 08-May-16 11:33:31

I laboured in the day with dd2 and dd1 went to my parents, I'd have left her in bed at night. Personally I'd do the same again, the time away from you is less than for a hospital birth, she came back to meet her little sister just after lunch smile

madamginger Sun 08-May-16 11:44:38

When ds1 was born DD was in bed, he was born at 8:30. She woke up to a new brother.
When dc3 was born my mum took DD to preschool and ds1 went as well. She got back as I was pushing and kept ds1 in the kitchen with a piece of toast. He was born at 9:30, I then went to pick DD up from preschool at 12 and left DH with the baby for a bit of father/son bonding.

AllMyBestFriendsAreMetalheads Sun 08-May-16 11:48:07

"He was born at 9:30, I then went to pick DD up from preschool at 12"

shock That's amazing! I was going to say that I was still naked 2 1/2 hours after by HB but it was the middle of the night, so more acceptable.

I was still waiting for my placenta 2 1/2 hours after my first birth!

Lunar1 Sun 08-May-16 11:52:02

Are you happy to have the baby alone if your dh needs to take her out?

OneAPecker Sun 08-May-16 11:56:03

I would suggest calling friend or family when you start to labour to come over. They can keep dd company if she is awake, and will already be there if you need to transfer. I prepared a " baby is coming bag" for my ds who was 5. it was full of wrapped up little presents, lego, colouring in, a dvd, chocolates etcetc. this was too keep him occupied and have fun and could only be opened one by one when my mum arrived. he knew about the bag for days before hand and was so excited. in the end baby took a couple of hours. my ds was disappointed he didn't see " the baby come out" but I think having a 5 year old at the business end is a bit much. good luck!

MrsPigling Sun 08-May-16 12:06:38

dd1 slept through dd2's homebirth. Just as well really as I can't remember having anyone lined up to be with her....

I started labouring for #3 with dd1&2 still in the house, but things only got going properly once they left for a sleepover at SIL's house. Wasn't a planned thing, but worked out very well in the end.

dd1, 2 and 3 all slept through ds's birth smile

I was fairly quiet in labour too, and 3/4 times in was in the middle of the night anyway.

madamginger Sun 08-May-16 12:23:32

allmybest I felt amazing after his birth, like I could have run a marathon. And to be fair I was only out for 20 minutes.
The midwife left at 11am and I had a quick shower and nipped out.
My friend went out for a pub lunch 5 hours after her DD was born grin

DelphiniumBlue Sun 08-May-16 12:33:40

Ds1&2 were both awake when DS3 was born. I went into labour around 4 am and ds1 was awake already,was pacing the floor! My mum came and kept him busy till ds3 arrived a few hours later. He was born in the bathroom, which is next to DS2's bedroom. I thought DS2 slept through it all, but he tells me he could hear everything.he stayed in bed but surfaced at the first cry!
DS 1&2 were 5 & 7 at the time.

FourForYouGlenCoco Sun 08-May-16 18:30:12

Thank you all for your replies! We have contingencies in place for either an emergency or non-emergencies. I just thought it made more sense to see how we get on first. Think she is more likely to feel left out and resentful if we send her packing than she is to be traumatised if she stays. Some good ideas here too - love the 'baby is coming bag'!
Also feeling glad that I'm not BU - I really didn't think I was, but nice to have outside opinions! DH wasn't keen on the idea of a homebirth for DD - did it anyway and he absolutely raved about it afterwards, so I was proven right then too. I feel like I should get the last word on labour matters seeing as I'm the one doing it!

FutureGadgetsLab Sun 08-May-16 18:32:16

I wouldn't. I'm tokophobic and I think seeing a woman giving birth as a child would have put me off ever having children. Many tokophobic women describe having witnessed a birth that ended up scarring them

ElbowArse Sun 08-May-16 18:40:16

I've had three homebirths and for hb2 and hb3 I went into labour as soon as the kids were in bed and baby was born before they woke up - seems to be quite common that way. I've always had backup childcare just in case though and had I had to go to hospital my husband would have stayed behind until a babysitter arrived (10 mins max) then followed me in the car. I did prep my kids by watching videos of homebirths with them beforehand and talking through what might happen (watch the videos on your own first, just in case it's too much). Good luck!

allowlsthinkalot Sun 08-May-16 20:56:37

I'be had four dc. The first in hospital, second and third at home, fourth a planned home birth during which I transferred to hospital. The plan with dc4 was for the other three to be in the house. When she was born I had a massive postpartum haemorrhage and lost three litres of blood. I think it would have been very frightening for the dc to witness.

I am not against having siblings at a birth but if it's possible I would have a plan B and be aware that all births are different.

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