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birth without pushing

(48 Posts)
Snowlet Fri 14-Mar-14 09:28:27

Just that really.... would anyone be willing to share a story about birthing without actively pushing? The hypno book that I'm reading (in preparation for the hypno course) talks about how pushing isn't necessary. You breathe your baby out and the body does the work.

Have people experienced this? Are the midwives agreeable to leaving you alone to birth in your own time? I'm sure no matter what birth is challenging but I'm planning to avoid the discomfort/damage that people say comes along with a lot of pushing. Have others accomplished this?

Mummyk1982 Fri 14-Mar-14 09:39:12

I'm doing hypnobirthing too. From what the person who taught me said, you still push but you don't actually actively push- you let your body push- so it's not a conscious decision, your body just does it. Maybe not the nicest analogy but a bit like when you have a tummy upset and your bowels just 'go' without you making the effort :-)

Sillylass79 Fri 14-Mar-14 09:41:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AllBellyandBoobs Fri 14-Mar-14 09:48:05

I had the same expulsion feeling, my body was pushing without me having to actively help it. I was on monitors throughout and the midwife would say that a contraction was coming so to get ready to push but they didn't all feel like pushing contractions to me so I didn't do anything about it, just waited for the next one. It did take my dd 4 hours to come out from me being fully dilated though so maybe I should have listened to the midwife more smile

AShadowStirsWithin Fri 14-Mar-14 09:50:00

Yes with my first, it was an easy labour, fairly quick and my body just did it. She just came out and I breathed through it to try and avoid pushing and therefore tearing, I think I did a few tiny pushes at one point because it felt right but that was it.

With DS I wouldn't have been able to breathe her out. The labour had stopped three times, baby was beginning to show signs of distress and after 48 hours of labouring I was exhausted. He just wasn't moving, it was very much "you need to get him out now Shadow or we will need to step in". So I just had to grit teeth and push like billy o. It wasn't pleasant, meant that his whole head flew out in one push, I felt the tear and screamed and the mw stepped in and pulled him out. I would v v much try and avoid that if I have another. Although I do think it wouldn't have happened like that if I weren't so exhausted, I was beginning to lose consciousness between pushes, it meant I didn't have options, they just needed him out before I reached a point where I was too exhausted and instrumental delivery would have been necessary.

So I think it depends on the type of labour you have and whether it progresses well throughout.

Mandy21 Fri 14-Mar-14 09:51:55

Slightly different situation is that I never had the urge to push in either pregnancy, my body simply did not do that. Babies were engaged, head down, waters gone etc and there was definitely no pushing, not even after 19 hours at 10cm dilation in relation to 1st pregnancy. The midwifes were content to leave me but when it was apparent that my body wasn't going to take over, they encouraged me to push.

ReallyTired Fri 14-Mar-14 10:00:52

I had a birth without active pushing. I had a homebirth which was far more relaxed than a hospital birth. With a homebirth there is less pressure as there is not a saugage factory affect of people wanting to get you out of the labour ward. You do not have to give birth to a time scale.

I don't know much about hypnobirthing although I did a natal hypnotherapy course for pain management. I found that it helped me to keep calm and and delegate worrying about the birth to my midwife. Clearly to do this you need to have a midwife that you trust implicitly. I was really lucky in that my community midwife delivered my baby and it really helped knowing her.

If you are scared then your body intenses up because of the fight or flight response. Labour becomes more painful when you are scared. Sometimes too much education about what can go wrong in childbirth makes women understandably scared. People who have had bad experiences of childbirth tend to be more vocal about their birth stories. Sometimes a woman's imagination can run away with them. Expecting a traumatic experience increases the chances of a bad experience happening.

It sounds weird, but there is no point in worrying about the future and its better to enjoy the present. You can read books attend courses until the cows come home, but nothing can guarentee a good birth experience. If things don't go to plan then there no point in beating your self up over it.

Back to the topic. My experience of breathing out a baby was the dd was almost born down the toilet. I felt a reflex almost like a giant piston inside me. I had no control over this reflex. It really was a bizare sensation like nothing else. I didn't experience a painful ring of fire, but neither was lucky enough to get an orgasm.

puddock Fri 14-Mar-14 10:04:49

I mostly took a "let my body do the pushing" approach without making conscious effort. I'm not sure I'd say I "breathed them out" - that sounds a bit too serene and silent - but the effort was physical and involuntary.

I still found that (with great sympathetic midwives) I was directed to push at certain points, even during my easier labour. This was my first, a waterbirth, this just happened once after his head was born, and body didn't follow in the next contraction, mw said quietly that I should make a big effort to push with the next wave - I guess because she would have had to get me out of the water to make sure he wasn't in difficulty if he seemed stuck.
I'm glad she said so, because he came out and we continued to have a very relaxed 3rd stage etc in the pool, so pushing at that point was the best thing IYSWIM. I had a small tear, but I don't think that was the result of the push specifically.

Helspopje Fri 14-Mar-14 11:23:45

IMHO you can't breathe your first baby out. the overwhelming urge to push is phenomenal.

can do it once you know what's coming though so subesquent babies were much more like the book suggested

DOI all <1hr labours and last 13 mins start to finish.

ReallyTired Fri 14-Mar-14 14:09:48

"IMHO you can't breathe your first baby out. the overwhelming urge to push is phenomenal."

Having the urge to push is different to directed pushing. There is the uncontrollable urge to push when second babies as well. The difference is that the mother's body decides when to push rather than a midwife. Labour is hard work and you will be dripping with sweat during the second stage.

Imagine you were doing a massive poo lying on your back with your legas akimo and someone was telling you to "PUSH!!!!". Would you feel self concious and would it really work?

OneLittleToddleTerror Fri 14-Mar-14 14:43:32

I'm the same as Mandy that I didn't have any urge to push. So it's not true that the urge to push is phenomenal. It might simply be true for you. The midwife tried telling me when to push by putting a hand over my stomach and feeling my contractions. But in the end that didn't work and I ended up with a episiotomy and ventouse. I think maybe there would be a lot less damage if I can actually push very hard. hmm

thatswhatimtalkingbout Fri 14-Mar-14 14:50:31

I actively pushed dd1 out, I wanted it to be over and I could feel her coming and I didn't know any better. I got a 3rd degree tear (she was over 9lb)

When dd2 was born the midwife told me constantly not to push. My body pushed but I didn't, I relaxed as much as I could and just let it happen. I had a tiny tear only.

I think if your body is pushing well the best thing to do is as little as possible. I wish I had known that the first time but never mind. I am sure there are times when the mw needs to encourage the mother to push for some reason but if there is no reason, she will let you be

EthelredOnAGoodDay Fri 14-Mar-14 14:53:02

My best friend did hypnobirthing and said that her body just took over in the pushing stage and she couldn't control it. She's always incredulous that I didn't have the same experience with my two. In fact I had to push with massive force to get my two out and had an assisted delivery with one. But they were big babies (8lb 15oz and 9lb 13oz) so that probably didn't help!! grin

topknob Fri 14-Mar-14 14:56:29

I didn't push dd2 out, the contractions weren't working or something, she was not in a good way, she was pulled out with a ventouse delivery so much pain and she was only 4lb 11.

IdaClair Fri 14-Mar-14 15:02:44

My experience of pushing has been akin to vomiting. Forcible, but not under my control - impossible to stop, best you can do is catch...

I never knew if it was 'time' to push - I think lots of 'no urge' situations might be caused by the examination - now it's time, no urge, do it anyway? I read that there is often a break between first and second stages, sometimes several hours. So if your body was taking a break perhaps you might think it had all stopped, and instead of having a sleep before getting them out people insist you push and it doesn't't work so well? Perhaps.

I opted out of examinations so no idea when I was what, I could have been 10cm ages before pushing, who is to know? Babies came out when they came out regardless.

OneLittleToddleTerror Fri 14-Mar-14 15:23:59

I think lots of 'no urge' situations might be caused by the examination - now it's time, no urge, do it anyway? I read that there is often a break between first and second stages, sometimes several hours. So if your body was taking a break perhaps you might think it had all stopped, and instead of having a sleep before getting them out people insist you push and it doesn't't work so well? Perhaps.

Do you mean internal examination IdaClair? I only had one and that's when the midwife told me I was fully dilated because they sent me home with a sweep. I could well be at 10cm for ages but I had no idea. My contractions weren't working and I was cracking jokes late first and through second stage. If I had a cup of tea, I'd be able to hold it too. I'm fairly certain I can't push because I can't feel contractions properly. And the midwife only noticed when she put a hand on my stomach and told me I was actually having a contraction!

In the old days, lots of women die in childbirth. I'd probably be one of them without assisted delivery. That was my biggest fear when they were trying to pull DD out. I kept imagining DD would be stuck, and the doctor kept telling me to push while they pull. It's bloody hard work.

OneLittleToddleTerror Fri 14-Mar-14 15:25:26

And I didn't have any pain relief except a tens machine, so I wasn't high on drugs. Just in case someone is going to say you can't push because you have an epidural/gas and air etc.

NaturalBaby Fri 14-Mar-14 15:28:02

I did hypnobirthing and was expecting not to push at all. When the time came then baby had been sat in the birth canal for an hour, not moving, and was getting tired so the mw's said I needed to get him moving and push.
2nd and 3rd time round I didn't actively push at all and had no intervention from mw's as everything progressed much quicker.

mrsbug Fri 14-Mar-14 15:52:14

I did hypnobirthing and had no urge to push. I'd had no drugs stronger than codeine.

dd ended up being born by forceps and she had to be rotated first as she wasn't in the right position to be born - so maybe that's why i had no urge to push?

as to whether she would have eventually turned round on her own, who knows? Unfortunately I had already been in labour for two days and the midwife was very keen to get dd out by that point as my waters had gone at the start of my labour so she was concerned about the risk of infection

Seff Fri 14-Mar-14 16:41:10

I had started pushing without realising whilst I was on a monitor after my waters broke. There wasn't a MW in the room with me at the time though. Once I got into the pool, I did start pushing myself but only when my body was doing it anyway.

No hypnobirthing, and just gas and air once I got to that stage but I was with it in between contractions.

IMO, the best midwives will leave you to push when you get the urge if that's what is working for you, and will intervene if needed.

FannyFifer Fri 14-Mar-14 16:47:33

First time had epidural so coached pushing.
Second time, my body pushed without me doing anything, I honestly couldn't have stopped it.

snowpuma Fri 14-Mar-14 22:58:28

I did hypnobirthing twice (home birth 2nd time) and didn't have urge to push either time. First time -in hospital -they gave me an hour to push her out or they'd intervene, so I had to push as hard as I could or else!! (I did do it just in time!). 2nd time at home so much more relaxed, like someone else said, I could have been 10cm for hours but no urge to push, so mW suggested I have a go at pushing... Lo and behold, baby was out with the third push, and I did definitely have the feeling I was only doing half the work, my body was also expelling the baby at the same time.

JabberJabberJay Fri 14-Mar-14 23:02:08

I didn't push with DC2. The baby was expelled from my body. It was completely out of my control.

I've had 2 completely unmediated births (1 at home) and I have never been instructed to push.

whereisshe Fri 14-Mar-14 23:02:14

There's a difference between pushing and directed pushing. My midwife left me alone to do what I wanted, and I wanted to push. It was the best and most satisfying part of labour for me.

SummerRain Fri 14-Mar-14 23:05:55

My body pushed, I could either have gone with it and helped push or resisted and extended the pain. There was nothing voluntary about pushing, not pushing would have been an active resistance of what my body was insisting on.

This was true for all three births and a miscarriage at 10 weeks.

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