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Do I really need my Doula?

(16 Posts)
datingthedevil Sun 14-Oct-12 22:07:38

Hi again,

Pls can I have your advice?

I've booked a doula for my December arrival as I don't have anyone close enough to ask and think mum being there is weird (does anyone else think its weird having mum at the birth or is it just me?). The babies father will not be there as he's a git and had ran back to his mummy.

My doula is lovely, a really nice lady, but the closer I get to the due date, the more I think I should cancel her and do it on my own. I'm currently low risk so planning on going to a birthing centre which will be much nicer.

Have many of you gone through labour on your own? Do I really need her there? Will I cope?! Will the midwifes pay more attention to me if I'm alone? Sorry for all the questions, Thank you all xxx

halloweeneyqueeney Sun 14-Oct-12 22:21:18

I've heard that the MWs pay more attention to you if you have a "witness" which is a bit grim and I'm sure obviously only applies to the odd bad egg but that is what I've been hearing

I do think you need back up, it can be really hard to argue your case when interrupted by contractions, I found it hard to speak at all

halloweeneyqueeney Sun 14-Oct-12 22:22:43

also in the MLU I went to I did not have my own MW, shared one with another room, and was left alone A LOT! They also take a lot of calls out of hours while working at the MLU etc

if you are not going to have a birth partner and want to guarentee a MW is with you at all times then a home birth might be a safer option?

datingthedevil Sun 14-Oct-12 22:54:18

My mum is really anti home birth in case something goes wrong and we need to go to hospital sad.

Wolfiefan Sun 14-Oct-12 23:01:45

Is hospital close?
I'd want someone who could speak for me. I'm not at my most eloquent in advanced labour and would find it difficult to articulate what I wanted if a decision needed making.

halloweeneyqueeney Sun 14-Oct-12 23:05:32

if something goes wrong, with a home birth it'll be picked up immediately and you'll be transferred straight away, in birth centres there's more of a leaving you to it vibe which is fine if everything is going normally, but if not it can be a while before problems are noticed, so even if the CLU is down the hall, you could be there much sooner with a home birth than in the birth centre. Had I been at home for my first I would have been in the CLU HOURS before I was. I was in a birth centre and they didn't observe as much as you would with a home birth so by the time I was moved to the CLU I would have been there ages ago with a home birth

and with a home birth you have guarenteed uninterrupted supervision

halloweeneyqueeney Sun 14-Oct-12 23:07:14

of course your mum might have valid points, but IMO it would be worth you looking into it for yourself as its a great option if you don't have a birth partner, in a MLU or hospital you do sometimes need someone to go fetch your midwife from down the hall for you if they don't answer the bell, at home that's just not an issue!

datingthedevil Sun 14-Oct-12 23:35:25

Hospital is about 20 mins down the road, and the birth centre is in the new forest, 20 mins from hospital. I'll have a chat to mum again. Thank you all x

halloweeneyqueeney Sun 14-Oct-12 23:41:45

so the centre isn't attatched to hospital which means it'll be potentially two journeys during labour, if you don't have a birth partner would that mean a taxi ride alone to the birth centre in the first place? I know I wouldn't fancy that! for me one of the benefits of a doula is I won't have to communicate with a taxi driver alone, hopefully she'll be able to pick me up (no family to help with DS1 so potentially DH will have to wait at home till a babysitter can come while I go ahead to hospital). Wish I could have a home birth (high risk) as it'ld eliminate so many of the ball aches that can stress you out and slow labour.. like getting there in the first place! not a dignified time to be in a taxi with a strange driver! I think all those logistics like getting to the MLu etc contributed to my labour not progressing well and ending in a CS. Make your early labour as stress free and easy as possible because that helps the labour go better

Badgerina Mon 15-Oct-12 17:24:05

I would keep the doula. I had DH AND a doula for DS2's birth and having the doula there was amazing. She knew exactly the sort of thing I needed at exactly the right time: a sip of water, a sniff of Clary Sage, a firm massage. She'd given birth herself and we'd discussed my preferences before the birth so it was great having someone there who just "knew" IYSWIM.

ICompletelyKnowAboutGuineaPigs Mon 15-Oct-12 17:52:12

When I had DS I was induced in hospital and because it was the evening by the time they inserted the pessary everyone had to go home and I was left alone. I laboured alone and it was HARD. It was hard not having any support and I struggled to make my self understood to the MWs when I was in so much pain. They didn't have the time to sit with me, much as they would probably have liked to. I had my mum and DSs dad at the birth and they arrived when I was moved to delivery suite and I would say that a huge load was taken off me when my mum got there. She already knew my wishes and was able to communicate for me when I was not able to communicate for myself (I was in pain and absolutely exhausted and slighly delirious I think

If you have doula booked then I would say keep her. It's better to have the option of support than cancel her and change your mind on the day! If you feel that you want to do it by yourself as much as possible you could consider discussing this with her and I'm sure she'd be happy to do 'hands off' as much as possible. The other thing is that I am sure you are CAPABLE of doing it alone, but it doesn't mean you have to.

I'm pregnant with DC3 and am considering having my very supportive OH and a doula and I'll sneak my mum in too if I can!

Good luck with your birth, whatever you decide.

schroedingersdodo Tue 16-Oct-12 00:49:15

Is this your first DC? I would say keep the doula in any case, but specially if it is your first.

I had no idea of what it was being in labour. My experience: I'm usually quite assertive and fight my corner with midwives and doctors. Then when I was in labour I couldn't even speak or think, let alone make my wishes heard!

MWs will treat you better if you have a doula (they won't lie or try to manipulate you to birth in the way its more convenient to them - for example, putting your feet in stirrups for the pushing because it's more comfortable FOR THEM - as they did to me).

I know it's a different experience for each person, but I underestimated how overwhelmed I'd feel in labour. Had no doula for my first birth and booked one this time!

weezl74 Tue 16-Oct-12 07:04:40

I've got a doula booked this time (didn't with my first 2 babies). One of the things that's helped me in justifying my decision to myself (I'm a bit of a stingebag!) is to remember that it's not a 'luxury' thing for mum, it's actually shown to bring about safer outcomes for the baby too, for you to have one.

I find this a helpful thing anyway, so I thought I'd say smile

weezl74 Tue 16-Oct-12 07:06:52

mini summary of the benefits:

having a doula present at a birth

Shortens first-time labour by an average of 2 hours
Decreases the chance of caesarean section by 50%
Decreases the need for pain medication
Helps fathers participate with confidence
Increases success in breastfeeding

OpheliasWeepingWillow Tue 16-Oct-12 07:08:02

I found my doula was excellent in acting as my advocate when I was in extreme pain and scared. The doctor and midwives had to concede that she was experienced, not scared and would back me up 100% (more drugs / less drugs / birth position etc)

datingthedevil Tue 16-Oct-12 22:16:45

Thank you so much for all your experiences and advice. I'll def keep her then. Xx

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