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to request a birth debrief when all really went well!

(29 Posts)
dodi1978 Wed 02-Nov-16 09:49:27

I gave birth to DS2 five weeks ago, DS2 is 3.3 years old.

Both bi, rths and pregnancies went well, with minor complications. DS1 was born unexpectedly at 36+1. He was well initially, but had to be readmitted to hospital at a week old due to jaundice worsening. I have got some questions about his care after birth.

With DS2 I had polyhydraminos. It didn't really cause any problems, but just as with DS1, I had to give birth on the labour ward (was keen to try water birth). I also had a little scare with bleeding at 10 weeks pregnant.

I am actually immensely grateful to conceive easily, to have two easy birth and to healthy children. I am absolutely fine emotionally about how things went in pregnancy and childbirth. I would simply like to ask some questions about why things were handled in a certain way (e.g. both my kids had tongue tie and there was no clear indication as to whether it could be cut on the NHS - it was both times; both times I was offered pain relief very late in labour as my water had gone; why was jaundice not recognised with DS1). I also know that DS2 will be my last, and I think a birth debrief could really help me close the book (and help me realise how grateful I should be!) on pregnancy and birth!

Please do tell me - especially if you work in maternity - if it is being unreasonable to request a birth debrief under these circumstances. If it diverts resources from where there are most needed, I will certainly not do it.

InSpaceNooneCanHearYouScream Wed 02-Nov-16 09:52:02

I think the overstretched NHS has much better things to be doing with its time hmm

AyeAmarok Wed 02-Nov-16 09:55:25

I think YABU.

The NHS is too stretched as it is, people who have had really traumatic births struggle to get their time.

Meemolly Wed 02-Nov-16 10:07:11

For what it's worth, I spent a lot of time re-living the births of both of my children, I think perhaps that is a natural way to process what we have been through. Ultimately those decisions were made by a professional at the time and although you may not be happy with them, you have to try and look at the whole overview of the event and consider the positives of having a happy, healthy outcome.

Meemolly Wed 02-Nov-16 10:08:13

Do you think perhaps counselling would help to talk it through rather than asking for time from the very stretched NHS?

ncayley115 Wed 02-Nov-16 10:36:42

I had a tough pregnancy after ivf, my son was in HDU for 2 days and I was sewn up to tightly by a junior doctor so I had a tear and a cut that didn't heal for 6 months. None of that matters now. I have a beautiful, much wanted and much loved son who is alive and well. Get over it OP.

abbsismyhero Wed 02-Nov-16 10:40:04

Perhaps you should have posted in chat?

Give it a few years you will not remember a thing you don't need closure you just need to crack on with raising your children

AGruffaloCrumble Wed 02-Nov-16 10:40:25

I think YABU but understandably so.
DD3 was a chin facial presentation, an emergency birth and she could have died after a horrendous pregnancy where I was at risk of having a stroke. I was told a wait for a debrief could be months so I left it. The NHS is too stretched to accommodate everyone unfortunately.

FlyingElbows Wed 02-Nov-16 10:41:59

"Close the book", on your perfectly normal births and healthy live children? Do you really have to ask if that's a waste of already overstretched NHS resources? Maybe you should consider paying for a private counsellor if you insist on "closure".

GinIsIn Wed 02-Nov-16 10:46:34

the thing is, that's just not what the birth debrief is for. You received good care from the NHS and had a good birth with a good outcome. What exactly is there to gain from your demanding further NHS resources? If you want the luxury of 'closing the book' you would probably fare better to pay for it privately, rather than waste resources intended for parents who haven't been as fortunate as you.

Augustwedding Wed 02-Nov-16 10:47:48

Birth debriefed are there for everyone, not just traumatic births. You say yours weren't but you had an early births, weren't offered choices and it's weighting on your mind. There is usually one midwife who does them at the hospital, usually already admin based so you are unlikely to be pulling someone off the wards.

You could always ring them and discuss what you've asked here and see what they say. I've had 2 for the same birth which in my case was traumatic. However the mw was very clear that trauma is all relative and if a women has questions from a birth then a debrief would be useful.

HandbagCrab Wed 02-Nov-16 10:48:08

Op if you want a debrief have one. They might not be able to answer all your questions but might be able to explain the reasoning behind some of the decisions made on your behalf. A premature birth, readmission of a newborn for jaundice, polyhydramos all sound potentially traumatising to me, we all react to situations in different ways which is perfectly normal and not something to be ashamed of or to try to suck up.

It's not clear to me if you're stopping at dc2 because you don't want anymore children or because you don't want another pregnancy and birth. A debrief might help.

Counselling can help you process how you feel but it cannot give you answers about medical matters.

If the NHS needs more funding then it needs more funding, not for people to compromise their mental or physical health.

Chewingthecrud Wed 02-Nov-16 10:49:31

Jaundice develops over time and isn't treated until a certain level. Usually a few days after birth hence noted in community and readmitted. Jaundice present in the very early neonatal period is usually due to more serious causes. Lateen on is more likely birth trauma, dehydration or simplebreast milk physiological.

Pain relief is offered at the point a woman appears not to be coping or additional procedures are planned. Some women never have any. Some don't want to be asked and to wait until they ask themselves. Birth analgesia isn't brilliant and not without side effects and can increase risk of instrumental delivery for example plus requires additional midwifery care in many instances so depends on staff available.

Tongue tie has no decent evidence and local protocols are often sketchy and variable. Decision usually made on individual basis as in your case.

Water birth again down to availability of pool and additional midwife

Hope that helps
The NHS is snowed under and buckling under the pressure. It cannot meet to chat about healthy babies and happy non traumatised some research, have counselling, chat to friends. The NHS has been present to provide for you in two pregnancies and deliveries and postnatal and neonatal care. Think that's enough don't you?

baconandeggies Wed 02-Nov-16 11:01:59

Book a debrief with an independent midwife

user1474627704 Wed 02-Nov-16 11:05:28

yabvu. You were very lucky to have it all so easy, and now you want to take time from a busy professional to talk it all through, time they don't have to spare.
Go to a baby group or class, they seem to want to talk endlessly about birth stories there, you'll be in your element.

TheWrathFromHighAtopTheThing Wed 02-Nov-16 11:10:35

Well, the thing is, the book is closed already.

Your children are healthy, you are healthy.

I really think you'd be unreasonable to pursue this with a midwife. If you can't let it go, maybe try your HV. But you may have to accept it getting the answers to everything you would like to know, now that's it's done and dusted.

GiraffesAndButterflies Wed 02-Nov-16 11:17:33

Give it some time and I think the idea of meeting up with other new mum's is a good one (provided you're willing to listen to their stories too grin )

My DC are 3 and 9mo, and like you the births were fine and I'm stopping at two. After the 9mo I was gutted not to get the same "how was it/what happened?" interest from everyone as with DC1. I really really wanted to talk about it a lot and process it. However over time this has lessened.

I think it's understandable really. Birth is often painful and very very exciting even if it's a positive experience. The birth of my second was probably the most momentous and exciting experience of my life and no one else really cares!

But, like others, I don't think an NHS debrief is the way to go. Wait it out, talk through with your DP, or find some first time mums who are desperate to swap birth stories smile

GiraffesAndButterflies Wed 02-Nov-16 11:18:30

Bastard autocorrect is DETERMINED to put an apostrophe in mums. angry

plimsolls Wed 02-Nov-16 11:23:13

Do you know if you can request a copy of your notes without a debrief?

If so, perhaps you could have the notes to read and if that doesn't help, maybe pay for some kind of counselling/discussion about the notes.

(I'd like a copy of my notes as my daughter's birth was frightening for various reasons and I'd like to know more about what happened but like
yhe OP I don't need a psychological debrief from the hospital)

Stormwhale Wed 02-Nov-16 11:25:56

If you are unhappy with the care you were given, perhaps a letter to pals might be the best way forward. I don't think you need a whole debrief, but you could raise your concerns with pals if you felt the care wasn't quite right.

TatteredOwl Wed 02-Nov-16 12:42:18

Please don't do this. You've given birth and had a decent experience - what book closing do you need? Maybe try and concentrate on other things now

dodi1978 Wed 02-Nov-16 12:43:29

Thanks Ladies, I do accept the vote given here saYong that IABU. I won't go ahead. I don't feel traumatised, would really just have liked answers to a few questions.

CurlyBlueberry Wed 02-Nov-16 12:44:33

If you think "actually I don't need to do a whole birth debrief" maybe just getting your notes and reading through could help you. You can ask PALS to help you apply for your notes and there is a small charge - £10 I think.

But I would like to say, women's emotional and psychological health MATTERS TOO. It's not right to say "ah well you and the baby are healthy so move on" - healthy physically maybe, but some women can be traumatised from what HCPs think is a straightforward birth, other women can be absolutely fine after an emergency c-section. It isn't always clear-cut. It doesn't sound like the OP is traumatised (although that's for her to decide!) but "a healthy baby is all that matters" is a damaging myth. Women matter too.

TheWrathFromHighAtopTheThing Wed 02-Nov-16 13:06:42

Curly, it absolutely does matter. But in terms of the very stretched midwifery resource we have in this country, I'd argue that the 'closure' of a good birth experience does not matter as much as most other things a midwife could spend time on.

MatildaTheCat Wed 02-Nov-16 13:27:02

Former midwife here. I think yes, YABU because most of your questions cannot be answered. 'Why wasn't I offered pain relief/ correct advice 'etc is unanswerable since the debrief midwife wasn't there. All she can do is review your records and translate them for you. The newborn advice was probably from a member of the paed team so not even in your notes but those of the baby.

I think we have to accept that nobody is perfect and people did their best. If there is an actual complaint then fine, make it. Why not write to the Head of Midwifery and politely say that you were given the incorrect information about tongue tie and perhaps staff can be reminded or informed of the correct process?

Enjoy you baby. smile

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