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To think it's not ok to make women give birth alone?

(424 Posts)
WhoToTell Tue 24-Mar-20 10:00:09

A hospital system in New York is now not letting women in labour have their partner or support person present. This seems absolutely cruel and goes against WHO recommendations. AIBU to think that this is not OK? There is no way I would feel safe and comfortable giving birth with only complete strangers around and no one to advocate for me if I was unable to.

SpillTheTeaa Tue 24-Mar-20 10:02:01

YANBU it's a scary enough time as it is and that is just awful.

beelzeboob Tue 24-Mar-20 10:03:34

Desperate times call for desperate measures unfortunately

Reginabambina Tue 24-Mar-20 10:04:03

This is horrible but it’s probably already happening to a lot of women who already have a child as a result of social distancing rules. Now is a terrible time to be due a baby.

BodiesMakeForGoodFertiliser Tue 24-Mar-20 10:05:16

It's a pandemic. There will be lots of recommendations which will go out of the window for the sake of safety to others...

steff13 Tue 24-Mar-20 10:06:40

New York is in a state of emergency. They have 20,000 cases of covid 19 and it's spreading about 5x faster there than anyplace else in the US. It's not fair, but as a PP said, these are desperate times.

Nicecupofcoco Tue 24-Mar-20 10:06:44

I'm due a baby, but in the uk. I'm terrified of this,but understand it may happen, and trying to get my head round it.

pigsDOfly Tue 24-Mar-20 10:09:18

My DD is pregnant, not due yet, but we have no idea how long this will go on.

I imagine this is something she's very worried about as her DH has always been very important to her feelings of comfort and support during birth.

I also don't know if I would be permitted to go and look after their other children either while she's in labour, it's all very worrying.

Crackerofdoom Tue 24-Mar-20 10:09:31

But if the father has it then the mother will too.

Plus, mother's in labour don't drive themselves to hospital so their support person would presumably have brought them to the hospital?

Surely, it would be safer for staff to leave them together and only come in at the cruical stage, gowned up and then sterilise the room after they leave?

If mothers are left alone, they will need to be checked on more often which means more contract with medical staff.

I can't see that there is any benefit to it.

But am happy to be corrected if there are medical people who know better than me.

scaevola Tue 24-Mar-20 10:11:22

Yes, this sort of step is likely here too, if the new 3 week lockdown does not have intended effect.

A number of WHO best practices might have to be suspended to ensure basic safety.

I saw sign in my local hospital last week banning anyone but patient from certain cancer clinics.

It really is shit, but they're not putting in measures like this for giggles

Marieo Tue 24-Mar-20 10:12:47

The other option is to let women have their birthing partners, which doubles the chance of bringing Corona into the hospital. This increases the chances of midwives etc catching it and not being able to safely work, meaning women might be left to give birth with zero medical support. What would you rather?

TheWernethWife Tue 24-Mar-20 10:13:36

How do you mean "alone" surely women will have a midwife at the birth. I had all three of mine with just midwives as my husband was useless, great dad afterwards but a bloody nuisance at the birth.

WhoToTell Tue 24-Mar-20 10:13:57

I'm also due in a few months. I would rather try and go it alone than deliver with total strangers. It feels safer than being stuck in a hospital on my own whilst in pain.

I'm already scared shitless being separated from my entire family other than my partner due to them being stuck overseas/interstate.

Marieo Tue 24-Mar-20 10:15:50

@Crackerofdoom they won't necessarily both have it, and knowing how it spreads, dropping someone off in a car is very different to them going onto the wards for prolonged periods of time, no doubt having to touch entry pads, use the loo etc. Mother's will have to have checks periodically anyway, and it wouldn't be surprising if discharges were relaxed so can be home asap.

AlternativePerspective Tue 24-Mar-20 10:16:27

Women have been giving birth alone for centuries. It’s only really in the past 35 years or so that men on the delivery wards have become a thing.

We’re in different times now and needs must.

feelingverylazytoday Tue 24-Mar-20 10:16:36

This always used to be the case, and women coped.
I'm sorry, but the safety of hospital staff must be considered.

Stuckforthefourthtime Tue 24-Mar-20 10:18:27

So, you'd rather they spread more coronavirus through the hospitals, reducing staff availability and threatening the lives of vulnerable pregnant patients and newborns?

In many pandemics, huge numbers of pregnant women and their babies die of obstetric complications due to their own illness and lack of medical staff and facilities. If they do this, it will be trying to save your life, or your friend's life.

It's only a very recent change in history to have male partners at the birth, and you won't be alone, you'll be with midwifes and you are strong and can do it this.

WhoToTell Tue 24-Mar-20 10:18:29

I don't understand how this improves safety for anyone. I live with my partner - if one of us get Covid-19 the other will as well. It's not like I can get myself to the hospital, so I will arrive having had direct contact.

I think its way less safe for women to not have a support person. No way I trust any of the midwifes I have meet to have my best interest in mind. So many horror stories from family and friends...

Marieo Tue 24-Mar-20 10:18:34

@WhoToTell they will be medical professionals that might just have to save you or your babies life. Are you saying you would rather deliver at home on your own? The measures are to keep other women and babies safe, and to try and ensure staff numbers are at a reasonable level. It's not done just for fun, and hopefully won't happen here anyway if people stay at home if they can. They aren't just random strangers, and in honesty i am not sure how much sway you think your partner will have anyway. There is a lot to be desired for postnatal care here, but do you think he is going to be popping to get you painrelief? If you only need paracetamol then you could take some in yourself. Is this your first baby?

Crackerofdoom Tue 24-Mar-20 10:19:14


Fair enough.

Actually, thinking about some of the obnoxious way many of us have seen some people behave on maternity wards, I guess you can't trust people to keep to themselves and follow instructions.

Just have to hope it doesn't get that far elsewhere.

steff13 Tue 24-Mar-20 10:22:47

I don't understand how this improves safety for anyone.

These are medical professionals who made this decision. They probably do understand how it improves safety. It's a pretty extraordinary step, they wouldn't have done it if they didn't think it would help.

StrawberryBlondeStar Tue 24-Mar-20 10:22:54

For anyone reading this and worrying about having to give birth without a partner there (maybe because of illness etc), try not to worry. My second came early when my DH was away. The staff were amazing I didn’t feel alone at all.

Aroundtheworldin80moves Tue 24-Mar-20 10:22:55

As someone who gave birth completely alone(as in unattended, DH was nearest person but was in the corridor shouting for help) seriously, I would rather have competent medical staff over a partner any day. It's a nice to have, not an essential for most.

DH missed DD2s birth too, but I had two competent midwives, and it was a lot calmer and safer (plus a student observing). He didn't actually meet her until she was 2 weeks old.

It's scary times. But midwives/doctors need to keep safe to keep working.

Whoareyoudududu Tue 24-Mar-20 10:23:27

Women gave birth alone for centuries, it’s an incredibly recent thing to have husband’s and partners in the room. They will survive the process, if it’s deemed safer then they simply have no choice.

ForestYeti Tue 24-Mar-20 10:23:29

Having a baby by yourself isn’t actually a nightmare I gave birth to last 3 babies alone due to partner being away with work, I actually preferred it to when he was there, much calmer experience

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