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Should I complain about my birth?

(36 Posts)
Cupcakes123 Fri 29-Aug-14 10:53:49

Just wondering if it's worth speaking to the hospital, I don't think I want to officially complain but I don't want anybody else to go through what I did.... Or should I just let it go?
Slightly long, sorry!

Ok, so waters broke at 5am, they were blood stained so we went to hospital. Hospital confirmed waters gone but as only having very mild contractions, sent me home. Got slowly more painful, phoned hospital at 11, they advised wasn't in enough pain and to Stay at home. My mum and DP decided actually no, you're going so we went in anyway (hosp is 35 mins away) Got there, pains much much worse, was examined by an extremely patronising uncaring midwife who spent 20 mins telling us off for going in. She finally examined me, advised cervix closed, nothing happening at all, it's going to be hours and to go home.

Whilst waiting for her to fill my papers in, had feeling that I need to go to the loo RIGHT NOW, then sat on the loo in extreme pain, sweat dripping off me, couldn't speak through contractions with my mum throwing cold water on me. Pulled emergency cord, she came back adv that I still need to go home and that was that. No examinations.

Ended up stupidly trying to go back to the car, made it one floor down in the lift and had to get out as so much pain. Was hanging off a window sill and a nurse from the floor, took one look at me, got me a chair, some water and called the head of midwifery for the hospital (whilst lots of people wandered around, fun times) she then came down, looked at me and called up for a wheelchair, bitch midwife came down and wheeled me back up, the in charge midwife was trying to find out how she had let me get into the state but in the end got angry with her and said she would speak to her later.

She then examined me again and discovered that the head was there and I was ready to push. My beautiful DS was born an hour & 40 mins later at 4.03pm with no pain relief AT ALL as it was too late apparently.

So really I just want to know if it's worth sending a letter or something just to ask her to be spoken to, she was so uncaring, didn't listen, lied about examining me and refused to believe I was in labour (I thought my mum was going to swing for her to be honest!) she changed her tune a bit when she realised she was wrong and he was going to be born NOW and was a bit nicer but I wouldn't want any other lady to go through that....

Siarie Fri 29-Aug-14 10:56:26

Yes you should certainly write a letter to explain what happened, if not for you then for other ladies. It's important that they up their game and improve their standard of care.

DPotter Fri 29-Aug-14 11:03:45

Congratulations for you and your baby thanks

This sounds so awful that I would complain if it had happened to me. I believe you can also request a meeting to talk through your birth as a de-briefing. I think it especially poor for the same midwife to take charge after she had failed you so badly - that must have made for a tense atmosphere.

Good for your DP & Mum for listening to you

UpUpAndAway123 Fri 29-Aug-14 11:05:05

So sorry you had to experience this cantankerous old bitch but congratulations on the birth of your baby-well done!
I would definitely complain. The route I would follow is to cobtact PALS at the hospital to officially register complaint and then get them to arrange a meeting with the supervisor of midwives. You could also put your complaint in writing but I think the face to face meeting would have more impact.
Hope that helps x x

CalamityKate1 Fri 29-Aug-14 11:14:02

Complain. I wish I'd complained about the bitch midwife I had. Nothing went wrong as such - she was just vile, rude, rough and cruel and I still get tearful remembering it.

Cupcakes123 Fri 29-Aug-14 11:38:20

Thanks all, it's made me feel better, I was worried I was being a drama queen but thinking about it now, it was all pretty traumatic confused
DS ended up in hospital with reflux on days 10,11&12 so I've only just really had a think about it now (he's 16 days today)

Will look into contacting the PALS people, I would love love love to see what the silly cow wrote on my notes!
Every other midwife there was lovely but she just wasn't nice at all.
(All worth it to get my gorgeous boy though)

CalamityKate1 Fri 29-Aug-14 13:13:40

Whereabouts are you, Cupcakes? I wonder if we had the same one hmm

MrsCakesPrecognition Fri 29-Aug-14 13:26:01

If you want to see your notes and talk them through with a specialist midwife, your hospital should offer a service to do this (probably called Birth Afterthoughts or similar) might be worth doing this before progressing to a complaint.

HowYaLikeThemApples Fri 29-Aug-14 13:37:25

Out of the four labours I experienced, the birth of my second son is still the one I remember the most due to the callous, uncaring cowbag of a midwife I was unlucky enough to get that day. That was 11 years ago and I still can't believe her dreadful attitude. I'm angry with myself for not standing up to her more and to make it worse I was so pathetically grateful when I had delivered my son I actual THANKED her FFS because I was just so relieved it was all over.

Cupcakes123 Fri 29-Aug-14 16:56:19

@calamity - I'm in Kent

I thanked her too! My mum hugged her, I think this was "oh god, he's here, look how amazing he is and phew I survived" hormones that caused my temporary rush of gratefulness. She was good at her job but just lacking in compassion and people skills I think

Cheerymum Fri 29-Aug-14 16:59:26

Part of her job includes compassion and people skills, without them she isn't good at her job

KatharineClover Fri 29-Aug-14 17:08:25

So sorry to hear about your treatment - I'd ask for a copy of your notes and a birth debrief first, then write your complaint (just so you have all the evidence to reference, her name etc to add to your complaint)

LavenderFox Fri 29-Aug-14 18:43:07

If you hesitate with the word complain, just write a letter to explain how you feel. If a member of staff is not treating people nicely, it is important to have it written down to be able to do something about it. Obviously she judged the situation badly as well which doesn't bode well for her clinical judgement. Chances are you won't be the first mum to have complained about her manner, but you could do your bit to make sure you are the last.

HowYaLikeThemApples Fri 29-Aug-14 19:53:28

I wish I'd written a letter all those years ago Cupcakes but it's too late now. Don't make the same mistake I did by not writing, I've been left with a feeling of unfinished business.

scratchandsniff Fri 29-Aug-14 20:05:09

You should definitely say something. It baffles me when people like that go into jobs dealing so closely with people when they clearly have fuck all compassion. Not as bad as that, but I remember being on postnatal ward after having Ds, was a drawn out labour ending in emcs. I hadn't slept in days and I broke down in tears in front of a midwife and explained I was just so tired and hadn't slept - she looked at me with utter disdain and said 'well that's a lie as I saw you sleeping earlier'. Yeah for about an hour. I hope if I encounter her again I'll be strong enough to stand up for myself.

Dangermouse1 Fri 29-Aug-14 20:12:44

Haven't had time to read the thread but what happened sounds pretty awful and I would encourage you to complain. I had a 'debrief' after my experience and it did help but I still regret that I didn't formally complain about a certain member of staff. Now a couple of years on I still feel I haven't entirely put it behind me. And would encourage you to write down everything you can remember and get your family to do the same, when you do see / speak to people take notes too. Part if the reason I didn't do anything was I really struggled remembering everythinG clearly.

squizita Sat 30-Aug-14 11:33:33

Her haughty manner aside am I right in thinking she sent a crowning woman home because she had not checked her properly, then lied to her boss?
If that other midwife hadn't come by the baby could have been born in the car park!

Yes I would most definitely complain.

Her attitude stank but more importantly she was dangerously negligent! What if she did this again to a woman with a tenancy to bleed, a baby in a poor position who might injure mum or a cord wrapped round a neck ... and no one spotted them leaving clearly ready to push? shock

squizita Sat 30-Aug-14 11:35:07

...doesn't sound like boss mw was surprised though and that she was angry abd on your side. So you may find a letter direct to her helpful.

Cupcakes123 Sat 30-Aug-14 11:45:51

I think I'm going to write a letter, not an official complaint as such but I do want it noted somewhere that they way she behaved was awful.
I do think if I don't do it, I'll regret it although I can't quite explain why It'll make me feel better?

I want to try and get hold of my notes as well, I remember reading in the notes that I was given after that I was "in established labour for 1 hour and 40 mins" but that's from when she got told to wheel me back upstairs so I'm not sure they will be entirely accurate anyway.
The midwife took those notes off me when she discharged me and baby, wish I'd read them properly now.

DS's length was written down incorrectly on them, she wrote 53cm and he was only 46cm, god, she was useless! confused

Cupcakes123 Sat 30-Aug-14 11:50:42


I have low platelets too, they nearly didn't let me have him in the MLU and wanted to send me into the labour ward incase I tore badly.
Thankfully no bleeding but could have ended badly had he been born in the car park.

I just remember my DP and mum looking so worried and it makes me sad sad I've never seen him look like that before

munchkinmaster Sat 30-Aug-14 12:17:01

But she wasn't good at her job, merely lacking in compassion. She couldn't do her job, prob didn't examine you properly, didn't listen. The other general nurse on the wrong floor and the lead midwife saw what was going on, why couldn't she . If it was a freak medical thing where you we're fine then crowning an investigation will find that out, they may also find she was shit . Start with notes review/debrief.

squizita Sat 30-Aug-14 13:57:08

Yes as munchkin says if 2 people can spot what's happening in a busy corridor and she didn't ... clearly there's an issue with her skills! Plus writing things down wrong.
Not on in a hospital. Not at all.

catellington Mon 01-Sep-14 21:41:28

A bit late to this thread, but wondering if this was at the WH hospital?

Cupcakes123 Tue 02-Sep-14 09:00:23

No, was at the PRU, Farnborough

plinkyplonks Tue 02-Sep-14 12:41:28

Cupcakes123 - Please do put a proper complaint in. I put in a formal complaint after my doctor missed my father's heart attack symptoms and it led to a procedural change that no doubt saved other people's lives.

I can also claim to be a lil biased as I am based near Farnborough and that incompetent person could be the one treating me in a few months time!

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