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Was your mum helpful during labour and afterwards?

(8 Posts)
Marzipanface Wed 01-May-13 19:41:03

I love my mum and get on reasonably well with her. I never have a prob with her coming to stay with me and spending time with her... until now.

I am 40 weeks and due to go into labour quite soon if the signs are anything to go by. I have spent the last week trying to put my mum off from visiting.

The reasons are; she is quite a lot of work. She requires 'looking after' - e.g she becomes incapable of making a cup of tea when staying at mine. She needs to be catered for, plans have to be bent around her and so on. I just don't feel emotionally or physically up for a visitor at the moment.

- She is a panicker. If I go into labour whilst she is here, it will be awkward. She has a tendency to make everything about herself and can be quite selfish although this is not always consistent, and other times she can be great. I think that this WILL be one of these big moments when she will act up.

- She is not great at offering emotional or practical support. She can be quite critical. She can drive me up the wall and at the moment I feel so pmt-ish, I am scare I will offend her!

If I am honest the idea of her coming to stay is making me feel panicky and v stressed. It does make sense as she has agreed to look after DD. Rather than drop DD off at her house on the way to hospital, (lives near) if she is already here it is useful, then again if she is at her house then DH can pop round during any 'slow' moments and help with DD. Mum is great with DD but not so great at the practical side of care, so not sure how she will manage if labour goes on forever. We are a good 45 mins away from hospital.

I really really don't want to upset her but this is probably the last time I will ever be pregnant and go into labour and I just need stuff to be calm and stress free.

Anybody care to share experiences or have any advice?!

KingRollo Wed 01-May-13 19:55:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bluebell99 Wed 01-May-13 20:02:11

My mum was hopeless sad she was already a grandmother to my sister's two children and had been hands on with them, having them overnight at least once a week. She basically came to be waited on. It was an additional stress tbh. My mother in law was much more hands on.

mrsannekins Wed 01-May-13 20:11:34

My mum had nothing to do with my labour...and it was a good thing. I think that she is a bit miffed still that I would rather have had a doula, a complete stranger who I paid to help me, than her, but that probably says a lot about our relationship!

Afterwards, she was helpful to a point, in that she and my dad came round every day and made sure I was eating well, and kept me company once DH went back to work, BUT I was spiralling down the path of PND and I actually think that she made it worse, and when she asked if i was sure it was PND and was I just tired instead, I pretty much knew that I needed to distance myself (quite) a bit. Much of the problem was that I wasn't able to tell her that they were smothering me and that I needed some space, and also she kept giving me advice (or interfering), which made my depression worse.

16 months on and things have settled down, but I have learnt a very valuable lesson. You need to think carefully about your relationship with your mum and whether she is a)going to be helpful and b)whether you feel you could tell her when you need some space.

AuntieBrenda Wed 01-May-13 20:15:00

I was adamant that I didn't want my mum when I was in labour but when it came to it, she was great. As was my dad and my mil! They were all there at some point, rubbing my feet and talking to me. I had a crap labour which ended in an emergency c section and my rentals and my mil were bloody fab afterwards too, my mil even slept on the sofa and looked after my baby so we could sleep on about day 2 when I'd been awake for about 24 hours solid.

AuntieBrenda Wed 01-May-13 20:16:53

Meant to add that before that, I didn't have much patience with my mum but she showed me how good she could be in a panic and how much she cared for me. I'd have her there next time too.

Good luck OP thanks

Elkieb Wed 01-May-13 20:18:31

My mum worked on the labour ward as a maternity assistant so she was not only there for the birth, but also got paid to be there! She was brilliant though, lots of encouragement and kept me calm when I was having a tough labour. Having her and my DH there when my DS was born made it very special.

emsyj Wed 01-May-13 22:06:12

My mum is quite annoying in lots of ways, but very good in others. She wouldn't expect to be waited on, she will make her own tea (although she does always complain that she doesn't like my tea bags and we have skimmed milk which she doesn't think is 'right') and help herself to toast etc

I was concerned about what to do with DD1 when I went into labour, and initially arranged to send her over to a neighbour, but when it happened she was in bed tucked up asleep and I didn't want to disturb her, so I sent DH to pick up my mum (with no warning other than a phone call from me saying, 'my waters have just broken, DH is coming to get you') and I put her in the back room and told her not to disturb me. She was very good and stayed in there, made herself cups of tea and watched TV til bedtime then went upstairs and pretended to go to bed whilst I laboured. Ultimately I decided not to go to hospital (I had a midwife with me at home) so she was in the house the whole time, although not in the room. She stayed completely out of the way until I went to take the baby to meet her (after midwives had gone and I'd had a bath etc, probably 4 hours after delivery).

Later that day she busied herself washing all the blood-soaked towels (she got them all looking like new!!! grin) and making me toast and tea, then left about 4pm. The only really irritating things she did were (i) hassling me about the bloody towels and constantly updating me on progress with washing them, including showing me one that had lots of blood clots stuck to it ("This one's got rather a lot of solids on it, shall I put it on a 90 degree??" "I don't care mum: bin it, wash it, I don't give a shit") and (ii) saying, "Shouldn't she have something to eat? Where are your bottles?" when I was breastfeeding. Pretty mild I suppose!!!!

My mum would never turn up to help me or offer help, she would always wait to be asked - which is nice in some ways, but it would be nice to occasionally get a call to say 'I'm coming to help you with the baby and make you dinner'. I can always call her and ask for help and know that it will be given though.

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