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Expat pregnancy and birth options

(4 Posts)
Lilly1984 Fri 18-Jul-14 08:35:12

Hello, I am in my second month of my first pregnancy, and myself and my husband are working abroad with an aid agency in a fragile country. We are planning to move to a family-point country in the coming couple of months but no confirmed posting yet. I am weighing up my three options for care and birth either at home (in Ireland), or in whatever country we end up in next or in a third country. Are there any other expat mum's who have dealt with or are dealing with similar challenges and how are you coping? Thanks in advance for any ideas :D

JamsetjeeBomanjee Fri 18-Jul-14 09:59:15

I had each of my four kids in a different country grin. However, none of them were a 'fragile' country. I was never concerned about the medical standards of any of the places I was. I gave birth in SA which was amazing as I was in a fancy private hospital. If you are in a dodgy African country then SA may be a good bet depending on logistics of course.
I did find myself getting confused about the different terminology used in each country, I had assumed giving birth in the US would be really straightforward but I found it very different to the Uk. I hadn't a clue what they were on about half the time.
I had one baby very shortly after we had moved and it was a bit sad that I didn't have any visitors apart from DH. It meant the first few weeks were lovely and quiet but I think I missed friends and family a bit.
My mum came and stayed for a month with two of my babies. It was fantastic although probably not my DH's first choice. He gets on great with her but still...
I've known friends have babies in more obscure countries but they have always been at fancy private hospitals (or military hospitals) where the care has been top notch.
Anyway, good luck. I hope everything goes well.

SomeSunnySunday Fri 18-Jul-14 20:21:57

I was in a dodgy African country at the start of this (unplanned) pregnancy. Too far away from SA for that to be of any use. I bottled it and came home blush. We were nearing the end of our posting anyway, so I came back with the children before DH, and he managed to finish up a bit earlier than planned.

This is DC3 for me, though, and my previous pregnancies have had some issues. I was really, really sick early on, and very unhappy about the healthcare where we were. My one appointment with an obstetrician at 6 weeks pregnant (which I made because I wanted anti-emetics, which I had had in previous pregnancies), ended with me leaving in tears when he tried to force me to have an internal examination - at one point suggestion that his nurse should hold me down! I lasted until 9 weeks before I got on a flight home. Suddenly everything just seemed too hard - the unbearable heat, shopping in the markets, and I had to get out.

I feel a bit pathetic writing this, but at the end of the day you and your baby's health and safety come first. It may be that you can find a good doctor who you have confidence in, that you'll have a lovely "well" pregnancy, and that all will go fantastically. However my first pregnancy ended in pre-eclampsia, an emergency c-section and a baby with a Group B Strep infection, and for this reason I would not even consider giving birth somewhere without developed world healthcare facilities. The advantage to going 'home' for me (rather than to the nearest country with decent healthcare) was that the NHS kicked in, and I didn't need to worry about insurance.

mrsnec Fri 18-Jul-14 21:16:20


I can't help with the fragile country issue but I am an ex pat pg with my first in an eu country.

I have had a lot of support on here as I suffered a lot with sickness and on other threads there are women in other countries that had experienced very similar issues as me.they were talking eu countries too though.

I have experienced both my local general and private hospitals. Both are fine. Things are done differently and I don't get straight answers to my questions nor do I have any choices whatsoever but the facilities are modern and spotless.

It did cross my mind going back but I've had friends who've had a terrible time on the nhs I decided to stay put despite the heat. I know the approach here is as little intervention as possible and that was the consensus of opinion elsewhere too. I didn't get prescribed anti emetics for example but I would have done if I'd been admitted but I wanted to stay out of hospital.

Good luck!

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