Birth story - long story but need any advise or anyone had similar experience.(17 Posts)
Hey, I was on here when I was pregnant and I never got around to posting my birth story due to the fact I could not remember half of it and it was just a process of stupidy and faults I believe on the midwive(s) parts.
5 months later I want to share it just to find out if anyone else shared a similar experience. I apologise for the long post in advance. I just feel its somethign I need to get off my chest amongst other parents. I am a FTM, sorry if theres TMI.
I had my daughter on 21st July @7.30pm. I was due on the 16th. I was induced on the 19th July at 11pm with the 1st pessary and then had the second inserted 11pm on the Wednesday 20th and by 1am on 21st July my contractions had started just really mildly but I knew what they were. Within about half an hour I had water dripping out of me (which I had for about a week before but hospital said it was nothing) I told a midwife who told me its not my waters I could possibly have weed. I told her I have had it on and off for an hour, it was def not wee cos I felt no relief and had no control over it. I had no sleep all night, by OH was with me and I let him sleep. Until 6am I kept myself busy on the ball, reading etc. I had slept around 2 hours the night before but due to the checking my baby heartbeat at hourly intervals.
By the morning I was shattered but nothing had really progressed. The contractions were stronger and about 10/15 min apart and I had continued to lose the water which the same midwife on duty said was 'just wee.'
During my pregnancy I suffered badly with sciatica and SPD and struggled to walk and the contractions were making it difficult for me to even move. I was on the ball around midday when I was holding my OH hand and I fainted. From here I have broken memories and what I mention from here is simply what I have read on record, broken memories of my own and what my OH and his mum told me as they were both present.
When I fainted doctors came in to tell me I was dehydrated and I was on put on a drip. at this point I was exhausted and couldn't move cos I was that tired. A midwife came in and forcefully told me I had to eat otherwise they would not put me on the synthetic hormones which would encourage my labour along. Which I was told I would be going on when my contractions reached 10 min apart and around 30 seconds long which I had been feeling most of that morning but was shunned.
I could not respond I was so tired but my OH mother told the midwife I would have to go on the machine as I was already in that part of the labour. I was on the drip for around an hour and slowly I came around a bit. I managed to sit on a chair which made my contractions easier as they were going into my back causing the most pain. At this time I had managed half a slice of toast and was put on the synthetic hormone drip (i cant remember what they call it) within about ten mins the contractions were coming thicker and faster and at this time I was losing blood in my pad very much like a period. I kept going to the toilet but when my contractions were coming I had the urge to push, I was in the toilet on my own and kept feeling for the head down there but could feel nothing. BLood was streaming out at this point all down the toilet. My OH mum came into the toilet with me to lift me up cos I could not move cos the pain and the fact my body was pushing down and blood was coming out. My OH mum has had 6 children naturally and told me this hadnt happened to her so she called the midwife who said it was normal to lose clumps of blood.
At around 4pm the same midwife came to break my waters as she believed they had not gone. I told her there was nothing there. She put a needle up anyway and was baffled when she said there was nothing to come out...my waters had gone. Which I had told her all through the night.
I was to and from the bathroom every 15 mins for about an hour carrying the drip and the synthetic hormones with me every time and it was dialled up to full strength by which point I struggled off the toilet in pain. My OH was with me and I was pushing down on the toilet with blood coming out yet I couldnt help it. i wasnt pushing, my body was. My OH went to get another midwife, not the one who was looking after me and she saw me and was shocked. She said I should not be losing the blood and to get me off the loo best she could and take me back into the room. At this point I asked for gas and air (the only pain relief I had) I was hesistant to take it as people I know told me they had been sick with it and i have a terrible phobia of being sick. I was holding it for around 20 mins when the pain got so bad I took it. It didnt help much with the pain but it made me really woozy and broke up my memory even more. I was on the gas and air around 15 min when my boyfriend badgered the midwife to check how far dilated I was. She refused several times and said she would come at half 6 - this was about 5.30. Another midwife came aroudn in that time and I asked her to check me, she went to get the original midwife who refused the first time except this time she checked me. She told me that my baby was pretty much laying there waiting to come out and this time set about panicking to get another midwife in the room including a student who stood watching everything and didnt even ask my permission but at this point I was so echausted I just wanted my baby out. She told me to push into my bum as though I was having a poo and so I did. She then told me she was going to get the needle to deliver my placenta and left me pushign alone for 20MINS! my OH mum was down that end instructing me and ringing for help but no one came. I kept pushing when needed and i heard my OH mum say to my BF ''she's ripping'' by the time the midwife came back she pretty much told me I was doing it all wrong and put her finger to where i ''should'' be pushing down to and it was around 2-3 inch above where she initially told me to push!! While she had left the room the baby monitor keeping track of the heartbeat kept dipping and no one came and the midwife checked it to see all the dips. She told me i needed to open my legs more but because I had SPD i strruggled to open them enough then she told me she had SPD when she was pregnant and I was about to think oh maybe she will sympathhise how bad it is and she said to me''Its not that bad, love'' her attitude was terrible.
Within a few mins my legs were forced apart into the stirup things and my babys heartbeat had dropped, seconds later I had doctors rushing in to say I needed intervention as my body was tired. I hadnt been pushing an hour! I had suction cap which didnt work and in the end she was delivered by forceps. She was put on my chest and I forgot literally everything! Then i was told by the doctor there and then my muscles down there were not closing to stop the blleeding therefore my placenta wouldnt come out. I would need to be took to theatre. I had to sign papers whilst blood was running out of me.
I was took to theatre for a '40 min' procedure to repair my third degree tear, muscle rip and deliver my placenta. In theatre I had an epidural to numb my body whilst they did the repairs except this didnt work and I had to be put to sleep in the end. The midwife had been advised to tell my family I would be put to sleep. By the time I came around I didnt know but I had been gone 4 hours and not 40 mins. The message was not passed on that I had to be put to sleep therefore my family didnt know where I was or any information. I was also told I would have to have an oxygen mask overnight as my breathing had gone shallow during the procedure. They also told me i had lost quite a bit of blood, around 2 pints.
it was after midnight when I was took to the high dependancy unit and my family were told to go home (even tho I found out my boyfriend was allowed to stay with me) my baby was tended to through the night by midwives who I cannot fault for their brilliance on that ward.
The next morning I felt sick, dizzy and woozy and not strong enough to hold my baby but yet I kept begging for a bath. I was took to the shower room to have a bath by 2 midwives and was then left alone for 20 mins to bath myself even though a clear sign on the door said ''do not leave patients unattended'' I had to sit naked, bleeding with a catheter still attached and shivering til someone came back.
Once I had got back I was visited by 2 doctor, the surgeon who had sorted me in theatre and a midwife who explained I would need a blood transfusion as I lost a lot more blood than they had thought. It was 3pints. I was also told under no circumstance could I give birth naturally again I would need a planned c sec if I have any more children.
A couple hour later the blood transfusion started and my boyfriend had arrived to the hospital to see me and our baby. After the 3rd bag of blood had been put in,a midwife arrived with another bag to ask how I was feeling. I did feel better but was told I had lost just over 4pints of blood. I said I was told 2 then 3 but apparently it was hard to stem my bleeding. At that time she asked where the signs sheets was I didnt know anything about any signed sheets. Apparetly before a blood transfusion begins,the doctor has to explain the pros, cons and you have the right to refuse. I said no one told me this I was told i would have one. She told me I must have signed it because it can cause death if the blood doesnt react well with mine and they signature proves I understand this....I signed nothing and my partner confirmed I hadnt. Minutes later she found a sheet which the doctor should have given to me to sign but didnt...
I was allowed home 2 days later and aside from been given the wrong medication twice and not enough iron tablets I was fine.
I told my story to the health visitor, midwives and people who visited since and they were all shocked at the story of how my baby was born. Like i said due to exhaustion and the gas and air I can remember bits but then in the 5 months since my baby was born the memories have slowly come back and both my parner and I feel we were robbed of a great birth due to the fact one particular midwife didnt listen to me. Afterward she was questioned as to why I was left alone for so long to push alone as this was when she should have been present and it escalated quickly from there. I never heard any answers.
I was told I could go to the hospital where they would go through the file to answer any questiosn I may have regarding the birth. I half want to move on and I half feel as though I had a terrible experience.
I am sorry for the huge post. Any thoughts would be very welcomed.
You had a terrible experience.
You need to think about how to get closure for yourself. Especially if you want more children as it may impact your experiences of trusting the care you will receive, even if a cs next time.
Unfortunately, as it was your first baby you obviously didn't know what was 'normal' so you couldn't assert yourself and what care you should have received. The mw let you down in that regard.
I am not sure what will come of them not getting you to sign the paperwork. That sounda like they haven't correctly followed protocol and they're lucky nothing worse happened to you.
Although not bearly as bad as yours sounds I had a terrible birth and similarly was invited to discuss what happened. I decided not to as I didn't want to dwell on it. I allowed myself to forget about it and enjoy raising my baby.
However, importantly, I don't plan on any more children so I know I won't put myself in that situation again. If you do want more I think you need to speak with the hospital as they say so you can understand why it got so bad for you and also read up on planned cs next time.
I had a similar experience to you with DD1 and was referred to a psychologist when I got pregnant with DD2. After a 2nd traumatic delivery ( but much better level of care) with DD2 I went for 'birth listening' with the chief midwife. It was brilliant as I could talk through the decisions that were made and what could have happened if they weren't made. Every hospital has to provide a birth listening service. If yours didn't give you any info on it then you can contact the supervisor of midwives and ask for an appointment.
I hope it helps
OP, that is NOT normal care. Your perception might be slightly off of what happened but even if half of that happened it is absolutely disgraceful! Please lodge a formal complaint to the hospital. That same midwife will be giving the same care to mothers after you.
It's a fucking farce! You should be annoyed and I am usually one to accept that not everything goes perfectly and am fairly soft on mistakes in general.
I know for sure if I'd even had bleeding like you mention before the second stage at all the midwifes from all 3 of my labours would have been all over it and monitoring very bloody carefully!
I'm really sorry to hear about your very traumatic experience.
I think you need a debrief appointment to go through things with a senior midwife.
The only thing I would say is that doctors can get verbal permission or written permission for a blood transfusion. Your family can't sign or give permission for you (that's the law). In an emergency, they can give you blood without permission if you are at risk of permanent harm without it. Obviously it would be best if they had gone though the full paperwork, but that doesn't mean that wasn't the right treatment.
I'm sorry again it was so awful and frightening.
I think it would be good for you in send in a formal complaint to the hospital in question. Just print out what you have written here and ask if they can investigate what happened. You should go via the PALs Offuce as they give guidelines around how long you should wait for a reply. You could also ask for a debrief with a senior midwife. They will go through to notes with you and hopefully help you make some sense of what happened.
Sorry you had such an awful experience. Xx
I'm a midwife and I do birth debrief sessions with women. I would really, really recommend you ring the hospital and ask to arrange one. Going through your notes with someone will help to get things straight in your head so you will know for a lot of things if they happened like you remember it.
There may be a reason for some things, there may not be a reason for others and it may well be poor practice. In which case the midwives will be spoken to to try and improve their practice.
Either way the majority of women find that such a session helps them to move on a bit.
I'm sorry you had such a tough time.
I'm sorry you had such a rubbish time! It's hard for anyone to comment on the actual care (although it sounds appalling) without all your details. The blood loss is confusing as we work in mls and litres now not pints.
What I would advise is to contact the hospital and ask for a debrief appointment. They will go through your notes and what you remember and try to piece it all together as to what happened and why. It's also an opportunity for to raise your concerns and allow them to be investigated.
Also have you had a postnatal appt with an obstetrician because most hospitals do this if you've had a third degree tear and again they might be able to answer some questions from their point of view. Especially about the recommendation to have a section next time because that isn't always the best advice just because someone has torn badly the first time. Obviously it might be for you as an individual but you need to have that conversation with someone.
So sorry you went through what you did, it sounds awful and no wonder you're struggling to move past it.
I had a difficult birth after induction too with a few of the things which happened to you (though not to the same extent). However, I had excellent care from everyone except one very young midwife at the start who constantly dismissed me when I said I was having contractions 2 minutes apart and passing a lot of blood. Again, first baby so I didn't know what what this meant. An hour later another midwife overheard me telling the young midwife again (and her dismissing me again) and she took over, checked me and rushed me to the delivery suite with a whole team of doctors there waiting for me. I had a distressed baby, intervention (as too late for a crash section) and massive blood loss and a transfusion. But it was quite well handled. I'm just glad the other midwife overheard me or it could have been a very, very different outcome.
I was offered a debrief by the midwives who visited me at home after, partly to help me piece everything together. But I don't think I need one as everyone bar one young midwife was great and hopefully the midwife who took over pulled her up for that. If it was more than her messing up I definitely would have one though, and in your situation I think you absolutely should.
You need to understand what happened to you and why, and the hospital needs to learn lessons as well. But most importantly you need to tell them what you remember and have them fill in the blanks and explain so you know and can process it. Also to know what you need should you want to have another baby.
Ask for a debrief. You can always get counselling too if you need it (they may offer that too, I was).
I'm so sorry to hear your story.
I had a similar but not as bad birth 7 months ago, also my first baby. The care I received was excellent and the outcome no one was at fault, but due to an induction, long labour, third degree tear from a forceps delivery I lost nearly 3 litres of blood and like you can remember very little and didn't hold my baby for some hours. Later my stitches opened and I got an infection.
While time obviously has healed me physically, just, I do still think a lot about it and have been referred for a debrief. However it is my husband who witnessed everything, including me bleeding in theatre, who is far more affected by it, so much so we are not be having any more children, despite the offer of a c.section next time. I think sometimes the dads can get forgotten in birth trauma.
It's so hard, I try and just be thankful for my healthy baby, but I hope you and your family do find a way to get past it, we are almost there but possibly because we are likely not to have any other child which in itself is sad. It's a cliche but time does heal, emotionally too.
I'm really sorry for what has happened to you.
Bar the (awful) induction and the general anaesthetic, the birth of my son was similar to yours. 2 failed ventouse, forceps, major PPH, serious injuries.
When you ask if anyone has had a similar experience, I'm not sure if you refer to some of the poor care you received or if you mean the way your baby was delivered.
The "care" you received is not "normal" but neither does it seem uncommon (being left alone or having your comments dismissed). Having a debrief could help understand some of what happened. Personally I'd ask for one. You may still be left with areas of unknown after the meeting but it should answer quite a number of questions.
As for the delivery, what you have experienced is not "normal". Being induced is not "normal", needing forceps is not "normal", haemorrhaging is not "normal", needing a GA is not "normal", being seriously injured is not "normal". This is not what most women experience when delivering their babies and I think your experiences need to be validated as exceptional.
In my view there is a problem with the narrative a lot of healthcare professionals use for circumstances like yours and what you experience.
A third degree tear (for example) is a serious injury/serious physical trauma and yet I don't imagine anyone looked at you in the eye and said "you are seriously injured". What you hear is "you have a third degree tear", "you should have a C-section next", "congratulations" somehow skipping the other major invent in your delivery, the fact that you were seriously injured. The congratulations (rightly) acknowledge the birth of your child but where is the acknowledgment of the physical trauma you have suffered?
The reality is that some women make full recoveries from these injuries but others don't really. As you don't mention your postpartum, I cross my fingers it means you're all fine physically now.
I think you're doing the right thing trying to get a sense of what is "normal" or not. You have given birth for the first time AND suffered serious injuries AND are looking after a baby 24 hours a day. You are truly amazing.
Oh Jesus OP. Utterly horrific and I am so very sorry for you. It sounds worse than mine (2 ventouse, 1 natural ha de fucking ha which led to tearing and prolapse). I am not sure I ever got over the first and you sound like you had an even worse experience than mine (although in each I experienced at least one shitty attitude midwife per shift).
A debrief did not help me personally but talking it out on here and other forums helped enormously so you don't feel alone. Sadly you aren't alone.
I am so sorry op. That sounds awful. I had a bad first labour although great care from the midwifes so not the same as you. I started getting nightmares and flashbacks during my second pregnancy so had a debrief with the consultant and it really helped. I had some specific concerns around epidurals not working and they took me seriously and helped develop a plan for labour. It helped just to have an expert say I had indeed had a bad time.
I would recommend it. I would also raise a formal complaint after the debrief to ensure they investigate and ensure this doesn't happen again.
I definitely think a complaint is in order OP & a de-brief. I wrote a letter after having my first child as I had an awful experience being sutured.. I could feel everything as think local anaesthetic has tissued, kept crying & saying it hurt & midwife just kept saying 'only 3 more put your bottom down' (it was up in the air because it was agony - more so than birth with no pain relief), in the end I gave up & sobbed into pillow with g&a.. honestly felt like I was being tortured.. DH luckily stepped in then & asked her to stop which she was stroppy about .. more local was fetched & it was better. But.. I couldn't stop thinking about it & I didn't want anyone else to have an experience like mine.. I wrote a letter saying how I felt & how it spoilt things & working in health care myself I would never continue with an examination when patient was visibly in agony. Discussed with matron & it really helped.. felt like I let it go & felt lessons could be learned.
Yours obviously sounds much worse, & I'd encourage you to complain to give you closure.
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