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Hypnobirthing experiences with first or second (or more!) births

(19 Posts)
CaptainWarbeck Sat 22-Apr-17 05:30:44

I'm 31 weeks with second baby, just starting to think about using hypnobirthing again and wondering if it's worth it.

With DC1 I used the CDs regularly up to the birth, felt really calm and relaxed about the whole thing, then needed to be induced.

I had to have continuous monitoring from the drip so was stuck flat on my back, contractions ramped up very quickly, gas and air made me throw up, finally requested an epidural that took ages to work, fetal HR dipped frequently so was prepped for an EMCS and then had a last minute forceps and ventouse delivery with episiotomy on the operating table.

That looks awful written down but actually DS was fine at the end of it and so was I, despite being a bit thrown by the contraction pain and memorably saying to DH when he enquired about it 'Fuck the hypnobirthing' in the middle.

I didn't listen to the music in the labour suite as I felt a bit embarrassed in case people thought I was a hippy (had an old school midwife) and didn't dim the lights or anything either. I'm thinking headphones this time are the way to go and being a bit more assertive about giving it more of a decent shot.

Interested in anyone else's experiences if they used it at all for first and then second births, or just second and the differences or how they found it really.

ItsNiceItsDifferentItsUnusual Sat 22-Apr-17 05:44:28

I did a course with dc1, all that calm breathing went flying out the window once the pain hit though. Had a horrendous labour, but like you I was basically fine afterwards so consider myself lucky all in all. Am 35 weeks with dc2 and am doing the course again and determined to take control this time. I panicked last time and although I strongly believe some labours can not be managed through breathing etc alone, I plan to give it a bloody good try this time.

Dothbutternoparsnips Sat 22-Apr-17 07:47:09

First baby and I would have declared it all as nonsense. Had a very fast panicky and pretty grim birth.

Second baby and I was more open minded. Did a few hypnobirthing exercises on you tube. I had the most calm and relaxed waterbirth and actually enjoyed the whole experience. Can't recommend it enough.

annlee3817 Sat 22-Apr-17 07:52:03

I was on the midwife led unit, I did mention that I had been practising some hypnobirthing, but the unit had dim lighting and relaxing music anyway, I had a good birth experience and would definitely recommend it. Midwives are quite supportive of it now and in some hospitals they put a sign on the door of the room you're in to say hypnobirthing so people are aware if they come in. Don't feel silly, it's your birth and should be how you want it where possible.

CaptainWarbeck Sat 22-Apr-17 11:37:18

Okay, definitely sounds like it's worth persevering with. And I need to woman up and just crack on with saying this is how I want to do it during labour. I'm in Australia so I don't know how common it is here.

The hypnobirthing I've got is the UK natal hypnotherapy one which gives you a print out to put in your notes, I think last time I worried I'd get the midwives back up with that and then look silly if it didn't help!

CaptainWarbeck Sat 22-Apr-17 12:03:33

I should say as well I'm interested in hearing negative experiences too, it'd make me feel better about my first birth. This is not necessarily just a sing the praises of hypnobirthing thread!

emsyj37 Sat 22-Apr-17 14:09:22

I did a course with DD1, then ended up with a crash section. I did another course with DD2 and had a calm and straightforward home birth. Same again with DS. In my area the One to One Midwives service offers free Hypnobirthing courses so I only paid for the first course - I used One to One for my 2 subsequent pregnancies so the courses were free and my midwife was very knowledgeable and supportive of the idea.

VeryPunny Sat 22-Apr-17 14:16:38

Did a course with DD1. Lived and breathed hypnobirthing. Turns out DD was breech, labour was excruciating, all the breathing/visualisation stuff did absolutely bugger all, saved by a wonderful epidural and then had EMCS after DD got stuck halfway out (can't use forceps on a bum, so they shoved her back up and took her out the top). Medical staff all fabulous, actual CS brilliant with skin to skin and feed in theatre, recover was quick and easy and not painful. Left with enduring sense of failure by hypnobirthing course, not helped by not being invited to post baby meet up.

Did different corse with DS, as obviously my EMCS was my fault somehow. Exactly the same thing, labour bloody painful, no breathing or pool helped but lovely wonderful epidural transformed birth into wonderful experience. DS was VBAC with a bit of a nudge from forceps - forceps were removed before delivery and a lovely student helped me the rest of the way.

I wish I had saved my cash and not brought into the whole idea to be honest. Still makes me feel like crap today.

DirtyDancing Sat 22-Apr-17 15:11:07

I had to reply to your post because, other than the forceps our birth experience sounds almost identical. Induction, epi, monitored, loss of heart beat several times so crash team came running in, ready to go for c section and heart rate improved, this happened 4 times. Then ended in ventouse delivery with episiotomy, although still in labour ward.

I hypnobirthed for 2 days though before induction though as my labour started, but never progressed. But during I never used it at all because i had the epi. Gas and air made me sick too.

So this time, with number 2 I just didn't know what to do. I felt like a bit of a fraud. I listened to the CD again and just kept thinking this is all a lie!

What brought me round to it again (literally in the last 3 weeks.. and I'm 40+2 today) was asking my MW to get my notes from DS1 and going through what happened and understanding why. It made me reflect how useful it was in the first 48 hours and that what happened wasn't my failure or that of hypno birthing. I kind of think it's at least nice to have and if I use it great, and if not that's fine too.

On the embarrassment side, I didn't have this, but couple of thoughts- MW have seen it all before and I think they would much prefer to see you calm listening to a nice CD than stressed out and upset. But if you wanted could you put it on your phone and listen with ear phones? Also put it in your birth plan so people know you are using it and say up front I'm using Hyno techniques. It might help to feel more comfortable

Good luck! smile

pennysays Sun 23-Apr-17 00:30:06

Was hugely dismissive of hypnobirthing as a close friend of mine also experienced intense guilt about not being able to "control" her labour. Hypnobirthing can give you a sense of empowerment which is mostly awesome but if it all goes tits up you end up feeling like it was your fault.

However, they do if free my area, so I thought why not? It's lead by real hospital midwives in my area though so there was no judgement about pain relief and we talked about how to use it in emergency/unplanned situations.

I'm due in three weeks. We'll see how it goes. Currently it's brilliant st sending me to sleep.

Mindful mama has a few free downloads. She's my favourite by far - I've got four different tapes!

fizzicles Sun 23-Apr-17 00:39:03

I used the breathing and relaxation techniques for 2 lovely home births for dc 2 and 3. Definitely helped me manage the pain, feel calm and not overwhelmed.

Sorry to gatecrash this thread, but you all seem very knowledgeable!

What hypnobirth programme would you recommend?

Ideally something on an app so I can listen on my phone then I can listen at home and play it on speakers at the hospital.

CaptainWarbeck Wed 26-Apr-17 09:35:00

Ican I've got Maggie Howell's natal hypnotherapy downloads - I've put them on my phone so I can listen with headphones in labour. There are different downloads depending on what kind of birth you're planning and you can order as CDs too. She's UK so British accent rather than American.

Thanks Captain.

She seems very popular, I'll download it.

emsyj37 Wed 26-Apr-17 20:37:00

I used Katherine Howells, but I think all of them get pretty good reviews. Certainly Maggie Hpwells is very well known one. I used KG as this was the one used on the course I did.

emsyj37 Wed 26-Apr-17 20:37:31

Katharine GRAVES not Howells, d'oh!

Wonderflonium Thu 27-Apr-17 11:09:40

I listened to Maggie Howell pretty regularly from the middle of pregnancy. Planned a homebirth. I went over 2 weeks late, needed an induction and had to go into hospital.

It was similar to your experience: constant monitoring, too much being on my back, epidural, fetal distress, 20 minute fetal blood pH checks and the pushing phase lasted as long as the first stage (3-4 hours for both) which meant the docs were getting antsy about the baby and were basically unpacking the ventouse as I managed to push her out. Second degree tearing, the whole bit. Meconium in the waters and they had to cut the cord ASAP so they could get a paediatrician to take a look at her.

I didn't "use" any hypnobirthing, the pain was shocking and unexpectedly in my thighs and nothing I did made it better. (Not even the epidural, really)

12 weeks on and I've just about dealt with the guilt/disappointment of not remembering how to relax, turn down the dial etc.

But! I was super chill throughout, even though it was the exact opposite of what I hoped it would be like. I didn't even freak when they took her away to clear her airways. So maybe it did work, in its own way.

MrsRaymondReddington Thu 27-Apr-17 12:36:35

I used the Maggie Howells Hypnobirthing. I read the book and downloaded the relaxation stuff from iTunes, did a 4 week course and got myself all ready to have a wonderful, calm birth and then had an emcs 4 weeks early.

I was terrified of having the spinal block administered, so I automatically started practising the breathing and I didn't feel a thing. So at least I got about a minute's use of everything I'd learnt.

annawilson12 Thu 27-Apr-17 20:58:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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