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Why does no one talk about this?!

(22 Posts)
smellsofelderberries Tue 13-Dec-16 11:20:39

I did the birth classes. I did my pelvic floor exercises. And now, after the drug free water birth of my 3.3kg baby 5 weeks ago, I have a bladder prolapse at the age of 30.

I'm really fucked off. I'm pissed at the midwife who commented my contractions had slowed way down once I got in the bath but instead of suggesting I move so my body took over again, she coached me though over an hour of 'purple pushing'. I'm angry that my birth classes didn't tell us the possible pitfalls of being coached to push. I'm just really fucked off that I can't pick my gorgeous baby up without fear of causing more damage. Little one is going through that week 5 leap and is super clingy and all I want to do is throw her in the wrap and go for a walk, but I can't.

I am having a review in the new year at the hospital where I gave birth, with an OB consultant and the head of the midwife team, and will have an ultrasound before this to see if there is muscle been torn away and if there's anything to me to work with in terms of physio (fingers crossed). The head of the midwife unit where I gave birth sounded really concerned by my recount of labour and what happened, and I feel like they're taking me pretty seriously, which is great.

Right now it could be worse as nothing has actually fallen out and I am completely continent, and maybe things would have gone back to normal with some pelvic floor exercises and time, but I do think there should be a lot more information about what a normal PP vagina should feel/look like and when you should go to the doctors, so we can practice some preventive healthcare and stop accepting that having bulgy, dangly vaginas and incontinence is just a price to pay for having babies.

Sorry. Having a ranty night. And I can't have any wine as little one and I have raging thrush which is proving a bitch to get rid of wine

frikadela01 Tue 13-Dec-16 16:12:04

flowers just wanted to say that's shit. So sorry you're going through this.

I didn't do birthing classes but when my body started pushing I tried really hard not to because everythin I've seen on TV is all coached pushing. Midwife just told me to push as it felt natural. Afterwards she said my body knew what to do and to trust it.

I'm glad the maternity unit seem to be taking it seriously.

Fluffsnuts Tue 13-Dec-16 18:28:34

It's shit. My DS is almost 1 and whilst I don't have a prolapse, I am incontinent which is significantly affecting my life. I'm due back at work soon and I honestly have no idea how I'm going to cope.

Blackbird82 Tue 13-Dec-16 18:35:11

I had a vaginal wall prolapse post birth. In my case I pushed way too hard for too long in the birthing pool before being ambulanced to hospital to have him delivered with forceps. He was back to back.

I was absolutely devastated and thought I would never feel normal again and hated the sensation of something protruding out of me. But, I recovered. It took a few months but it did return to normal. I know yours is a bit different being bladder but I just wanted to say there is hope. You are only 5 weeks post birth and it will take a long time for your body to recover. In the meantime do pelvic floors like mad, it really does help to tighten everything up.

pinguina16 Tue 13-Dec-16 19:05:02

I'm sorry.

Until you see a physio you should do pelvic floor exercises 5 to 6 times a day.
It should take around 3 months of diligent exercises before you feel a marked improvement and then another 3 months for another.
It takes a long time.

The bulging sensation is horrid. I'm still not over the shock that no one talks about it when it's hidden in plain sight.
All I can say is that it will get much better but it takes a long time.


Rachie1986 Tue 13-Dec-16 19:08:30

No advice but I'm sorry it was so horrible flowers flowers flowers

pinguina16 Tue 13-Dec-16 21:35:09

Forgot to say you CAN lift your baby, it won't cause any more damage. You shouldn't lift anything above 10kg (bins, suitcase or heavy bag for example). But you can carry your little one.
I had the same fear but competent gynae and physio explained picking up your baby is absolutely fine.

mamahibou Tue 13-Dec-16 22:17:51

Sounds like a terrible midwife. Hugs. If any consolation, I also had a lovely pool birth did not push at all but ended up with the same problem. Big head (99th percentile) and came out in one go rather than stop and shoulders first so ended up with second degree tear and prolapse. Physio was amazing. Bulge was horrid and used to make me feel disgusting. Time and physio (and Pilates, also recommended by physio) made a huge difference and I would say was pretty much back to normal about a year after. Baby number two, no tear, some degree of prolapse. Now 18 weeks later still doing the exercises and keeing the faith that it will get better. Hope same is true for you.

throughgrittedteeth Tue 13-Dec-16 22:33:35

Well this is the first I've heard coached pushing and I've had a baby (he's now 5!). I'm now 20 weeks pregnant and after some concerns with things after my first labour I'm reading up about this now.
I'm sorry you've been through this OP and I hope your find a resolution, but thanks for posting because now I can see that the problems I had may have been related to this and you posting will help me avoid the problems this time around. flowers

throughgrittedteeth Tue 13-Dec-16 22:35:07

Oh and just to add, I also did the bloody classes (paid a lot of money for them too!) and this was never mentioned. Seems mad to me.

frikadela01 Tue 13-Dec-16 23:02:26

I don't think it's widely known as coached pushing because it used to be very much the norm and if you watch one born every minute and similar it's still very prevalent.

It's the chin to chest, push into your bum whilst holding your breath till you go purple (aka purple pushing) all the while the midwives are saying "keep it going keep it going". I don't think it's seen as particularly good practice anymore though I could be wrong.
I personally took a really big breath then sort of blew it out Slowly whilst I pushed along with what my body was naturally doing. It sounded like I was blowing a really long raspberry grin. Whether that right or wrong I don't know but it got baby out and pushing was much less painful than the utter torture that was the contractions before it.

smellsofelderberries Wed 14-Dec-16 03:19:46

pinguina16 thank you, I really hope I do make a recovery as I just can't wrap my head around the alternative. I'm getting by with my little one, but not really. I suffer with anxiety anyway and it's gone into overdrive now, because what if something happens to her and it's going to be difficult for me to have more children? Just knowing that this is really common is helpful to me, even if no one really talks about it sad

frika, that's what my contractions were like before I got into the bath, and then they got much less intense. The bath also wasn't very big so I don't think my pelvis was open enough. As soon as the second midwife came in when DD was crowning, she moved me so I was more on my side because she said I needed more room. Why didn't the first midwife suggest this? Another question for the meeting.

gritted, are you in a similar position then? The thing that scares me most about having more children is that, if labour goes the same as last time, I will know better and I can imagine not sustaining too much more damage, but what if it ends in assistance? I guess at the first sign of things going that way I'd say it was c-section time. Another question for the OB. This is some feedback I'm going to give to the hospital. Coached pushing/midwife led pushing/purple pushing has been shown to have a higher risk of poor maternal outcomes, why is this not taught in birth classes? Why did our midwife not tell us when my contractions slowed? We weren't given the information we needed to make informed decisions about my health. We trusted the midwife and she didn't do the best thing for me. At all.

mamahibou un-mumsnetty hugs to you, and congratulations on DC2! I'm hopeful for a similar outcome for me. I could deal with this for the rest of my life if I can reach the point of being a-symptomatic, and if it doesn't worsen with future pregnancies. I wanted to be pregnant again by next Christmas as we want babies close together, but looking like that's not going to be a good idea now. Another blow.

Thanks Rachie. Even though my birth was everything I said I wanted, I have felt very, very tearful and negative about it and I think subconsciously I must have known something went wrong sad

AverageJosephine Wed 14-Dec-16 03:30:59

I'm not in great shape after DC1 was foreceps, DC2 came flying out textbook with a few roars, and DC3 was a long pushing session in the water and came out back to back and face up (usually b2b twist in the end on the way out apparently). My third labour was very very hard work and I was really beginning to doubt I could do it. Midwife said I was on my last push before they intervening. But I feel I've done some extra damage with DC3.

Having babies is no joke.

AverageJosephine Wed 14-Dec-16 03:33:32

Just to add, when I'm definitely done having babies I intend to get proper specialist help. For all I love the NHS I think they see damage from childbirth as par for the course and something that we have to live with which is bullshit as plenty of things could be fixed if they were willing to spend money on it.

Bitlost Wed 14-Dec-16 03:53:24

Physio will help. It's amazing what it can do. I had prolapse after a long and difficult labour with a really uncomfortable protruding sensation and some incontinence. Now feeling much better after physio and knowing what my body can or can't do (you won't catch me jogging or at a spinning class.)

My physio was wonderful. Female GP useless - told me that it was to be expected after a baby and never wrote me the referral letter I needed to get physio sessions so ended up paying for sessions myself.

Take a look at the specialist forums on the topic. Plenty of tips - Ladies are very supportive.

And don't hesitate to talk about it around you. I organised a talk on the topic at work as part of our parents' forum. People do open up about it.

Bitlost Wed 14-Dec-16 03:54:01

Also meant to say good luck!

smellsofelderberries Wed 14-Dec-16 04:17:17

Josephine, thank you for sharing. I'm sorry you're going through this too. I think after my Mum, who can still jump on the trampoline at almost 70 years old and after 4 kids, and even my sister who has a much more delicate constitution than me and had HUGE babies for her size with inductions, epidurals and sustained pushing and has no issues, I'm floored this has happened to me. I also wonder if it's because I know my body so well though and don't accept it's just a normal part of having children. Wider hips? Yes. Floppy tummy? Yes. Bladder trying to escape? No fucking way!

Bitlost, this is another of my worries. We are currently in Aus (I'm Australian), potentially/probably coming back to London in 2018, and the healthcare here is amazing. I only have a 6 day wait for physio, GP referred me immediately and I'm going for an ultrasound in the new year to check the extent of the damage. Can get in on the day to see fab, understanding GPs. Psychologist is at my local surgery who I can get in to see within a week, and all free at the point of care or small fee for the psych/physio. I was planning on having he next one here before we moved back to the UK, but now that may not be a good idea health wise but I have told DH flat out I am not having another baby unless I do it here. Also much more family support here. This has a huge impact on so many facets of our life, so it's all a bit much to wrap my head around right now (I'm one of those fun people who needs to do every 'what-if' under the sun when stuff like this happens!)

Have warned DH I want some massive, sparkly diamonds for pushing out the next one.

LittleBee23 Fri 16-Dec-16 23:15:20

I had coached pushing for dd1 as she was back to back and feel it did a lot of damage to my pelvic floor.

Dd2 I never intentionally pushed once, my body just did it completely by itself.

I didn't realise the pitfalls of coached pushing until pregnancy with dd2 😩

sj257 Mon 19-Dec-16 21:35:27

This is interesting. I pushed for 2 and a half hours in my first labour, because they told me to. It was horrific. Second labour I was so traumatised by the first that when they decided I needed to push I refused. It got to the point where I couldn't stop myself from pushing and his head came out with one push and body with another. I did tear but not horrendously and so much more preferable to two and a half hours of agony! Thankfully didn't suffer from a prolapse but this is the first time I've read about the coached pushing x

smellsofelderberries Thu 12-Jan-17 00:37:34

Just thought I'd post a quick update- I saw my specialist yesterday and she said I more have a lax vaginal wall as opposed to a prolapse, so didn't agree with my GP's and physio's diagnosis of prolapse. She said even if I did no pelvic floor exercises, time and eventually stopping breastfeeding would see things improving. She believes most women will have some degree of prolapse after birth, just because of the mechanics of it all, and I fall within what she would consider normal for almost 10 weeks PP. My ultrasound showed no obvious permanent damage, and when she did the internal she said my ligaments are all still where they should be, which is the big thing.
I have already noticed a marked improvement in the past month. I feel like I spend more of the day without a feeling of bulging than with, and if I do start to feel heavy then lying down and doing a set of pelvic floors can make things feel a little more comfortable. I'm so, so relieved! And so happy I'm one of the lucky ones who it looks like physio and time should get things pretty much back in place.
I'm still shocked at how little information there is about what's considered normal post-natally, and will bring it up at my birth review with the hospital, and my specialist said she would also feed that back from her end too, as she sees a lot of women in my position and she thinks we're not being given enough/or accurate information as to what to expect, aside from the tears healing.
So, YAY!!

kel12345 Thu 12-Jan-17 00:39:56

I didn't go to antenatal classes or anything. And I didn't do any pelvic floor exercises either. I've been fine.

smellsofelderberries Thu 12-Jan-17 00:41:58

I should say, I am diligent about doing my pelvic floor exercises 3-4 times a day, and have been able to start adding in a set while seated as my muscles are getting stronger. I've also started doing a few exercises I found on YouTube following Michelle Kenway, and plan on keeping this as an integral part of my daily routine. (My specialist wasn't suggesting I don't do the exercises, she was just commenting on how a lot of women's bodies bounce back regardless, but that exercise is sensible and important for long term health.)

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