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Not being taken seriously

(22 Posts)
thumbelina03 Tue 08-May-18 08:57:11

Since as long as I can remember I’ve always had a real fear and phobia of childbirth. I’ve no idea where this stems from, but I guess it’s one of the reasons I’ve avoided pregnancy up until now. I’m 41. I’m now 35 weeks pregnant and all I can think about is giving birth and how much I’m dreading it.

My midwife told me to look at hyonobirthing which I did, but I could not buy into it. Deep down the only way I can get my head around labour and to feel calm is to ask for a c section. I know this is a huge operation and hubby is dead against it, but the more I think about it, I feel it’s the only way I am going to relax and get through these next few weeks. When I met my midwife she virtually scoffed at me and said it’s not the easy way out. I never said it was but mentally it’s the only way I can cope. Is anybody else feeling like this?

OP’s posts: |
OhCarrieMathison Tue 08-May-18 09:01:02

Why is your husband so against it ?
At the end of the day it's your body and your choice and he should be supporting you in your choice not making it a battle.
Maybe speak to your GP it another midwife.
Lots of people feel the way you do and choose a section. Think your Midwife's reaction was unhelpful. It's normal to feel scared.
If it's any help I felt like you before my first and although labour isn't easy out bodies really do know what to do. I then went on to have another 2.
Good luck, hope you can reach a place that your comfortable with.

Tailfeather Tue 08-May-18 09:09:09

I had a. Elective section and had the same reaction - everyone telling me how awful and hard recovery is. Well, in my case, I found it a pleasant experience and very dignified. I felt a bit of pain when the drugs wore off (but nothing compared to labour and childbirth, I am sure). I was up and about and had a shower 6 hours after the op and could totally lift/change/feed my baby (others had scaremongered me saying I wouldn't be able to). I had to stay overnight as my iron levels were low, but the next day we went out for a nice pub lunch with my newborn. And I was driving 2 weeks later (the 8 week thing is a myth - I checked with my car insurance and my GP though before driving).

I'm not waving the flag for c-sections here. But my sister and 2 friends also had silkiest experiences, despite being told horror stories in the run up. Just sharing my very pleasant experience as I don't think it's fair for people to only give one picture of it. I also think emergency sections often involve more recovery as they have been through labour and then whisked into theatre.

Good luck! X

Tailfeather Tue 08-May-18 09:10:02

Similar! Not silkiest!

1875mlk Tue 08-May-18 15:32:54

From someone who's never given birth but heard great and not so great stories about natural and c section births, my advice is that it's your body your choice! You've been through a long pregnancy and your life is about to change massively, why not have the in between how YOU want it to be.

Either way, I am sure you will be a wonderful mum and I wish you the best of luck x

moose234 Tue 08-May-18 15:34:45

I suffer with severe anxiety, I am currently 31 weeks pregnant, I want a c section due to my anxiety, but my consultant is refusing to give me one, keeps say just have a epidural and you will be fine, no one is listening to me, so I know your pain

userabcname Tue 08-May-18 16:05:53

If you are being denied a c-section can't you ask to be referred to a different consultant? I'm sure I read that somewhere.

sunshinestorm Tue 08-May-18 22:41:28

Why is your husband dead against it? Has he actually looked at non bias information about labour and birth and the risks of attempting a vaginal birth (including emergency section statistics) also in relation to factors such as your age. Obviously a planned c-section comes with its own risks but there are also benefits.
Sorry you're feeling like this, I would research both options and make a decision. It's your right to request an ELCS if that is what you want.

stepbystepdoula Thu 10-May-18 07:13:32

This fear is real and must be taken seriously.
Many women express concerns, but this is more serious, make your midwife listen and get an appointment asap to sort this out.
It is your right to have a section, whatever anyone else thinks.
You may benefit from the support of a local doula, who knows how the system works.
Ideally try to get your husband on side, get him articles to read, so he knows more about this. Your birth experience will stay with you for life, trying to make it a positive one is always a good thing.
Good luck ♥️

RedToothBrush Thu 10-May-18 16:08:23

1) if you have such anxiety that its dominating your thoughts and making you unable to sleep worrying about it this is a health issue in its own right. This means if you are being phobed off by a midwife they are failing in their duty to provide the care you need.

2) you are 41. To be blunt about it that should be taken into account because a) you are unlikely to have many more children so the risks of repeat surgery are either none existent or limited b) your chances of an Emergency C-Section are significantly higher than a younger woman. An elective is less risky, though yes it does carry risk. Risk is not evenly distributed and there is an argument to say that actually at 41 going for an ELCS is the risk adverse option (it depends on your other risk factors and concerns).
3) Why the fuck are you listening to your husband? Its your body and its your baby. Again to be blunt, if he's of the mindset that you are worth less than the baby he should fuck off to the far side of beyond. Or if he's of the mindset that you will make a decision that will put your baby at risk out of some sort of selfishness, why exactly did he did trust you to become his child's mother? Tell him to shut up and support your decision. End of conversation. Otherwise he'll take the piss later on.
4) feeling like this is more common than we are led to believe. Birth fear is well documented through history, and is not 'irrational'. Its a big deal giving birth. Telling someone to 'just get over it and do hypnobirthing' is backward and frankly callous. We have a much better understanding of this now. Ultimately its about being listened to, and building up trust and a relationship in those caring for you. If you feel phobed off now, you clearly don't have the trust and the relationship you need with your midwives. You need them to take you seriously and listen and talk about giving birth. That might not ultimately mean a CS; you might feel better with a more robust birth plan which helps you cope better. But it might be an EMCS.

Basically make the case that you are being failed because they are not providing adequate mental health care which you have a RIGHT to under the NHS. (You have the right to the most appropriate care for your condition and if you have severe anxiety they have a duty of care to actualky DO something, not just prattle about hypnobirthing).

Get difficult.

LisaSimpsonsbff Thu 10-May-18 16:15:53

Are you under consultant-led care (in my area all over 40s are)? Or midwife? Because it sounds like you haven't yet spoken to a consultant - your midwife put you off rather than referring you? If so, and if you are certain that you do want an elective C-section, then you need to demand that referral as soon as possible. You haven't got much time to play with, so if you let the midwife obstruct you like this it could create a real problem.

FaFoutis Thu 10-May-18 16:19:13

I've had 3 C-sections and I think they are the easy way out actually. Thank god for them.
You need to be referred to a consultant. Insist that you are.

Bowlofbabelfish Mon 14-May-18 07:36:09

Seconding everything redtoothbrush said.

Polite, determined and pushy is the way to go. Insist. Keep insisting.

Pebbles4886 Mon 14-May-18 08:01:50

I gave birth to my DD five months ago and am still suffering as I wasn’t confident or assertive enough to
question certain decisions when I was pregnant or in labour. For instance a referral to a consultant midwife that was never done or being repeatedly told I wasn’t in labour when I knew I was. I think i’m trying to say you need to be strong and be clear with what you want and not be put off. Hope you’re okay and good luck.

BertieBotts Mon 14-May-18 08:09:46

You are allowed to request an ELCS for any reason. It's in the NICE guidelines. If your midwife won't refer you to a consultant to discuss this, try taking a copy of the guidelines when you insist to be referred.

sexnotgender Thu 17-May-18 13:34:25

Your husband doesn’t get a say in this! He should be supporting you and your decision.

sycamore54321 Thu 17-May-18 15:22:45

Your body, your choice. As long as you are fully informed and understand the risks and benefits of any options, then nobody else should get a say. You say a section is a "huge operation" but actually really it isn't. On the scale of surgeries, it's at the bottom end of "major". It's generally done without a general anaesthetic, which removes all of those risks. An elective section is carried out at a time when theatres are fully-staffed and prepared, with adequate time to work carefully. It's normally carried out on an otherwise healthy person, unlike most surgeries. It's a very frequent surgery, hence high skills levels and competence amongst the staff as they exercise these skills frequently. So compared to most surgeries, it's actually a lot less complex.

Having said all that, it's important you are fully informed and have an open and frank discussion with your doctor. There are risks to you and your baby from any mode of delivery; unfortunately childbirth is not without risks. But you are the person who chooses which risks are most acceptable to you. If your preference is for a section, then as long as you give fully informed consent, you should be able to choose a section.

Best wishes.

BeakyPlinder Thu 17-May-18 15:28:00

Your body,your choice, more NHS money wasted on an unnecessary operation but it's our given right as women to choose. Kick up a fuss and complain you will probs get what you want anyway

sycamore54321 Thu 17-May-18 15:55:45

@BeakyPlinder I can't decide if you are being sarcastic or not? Why do you think a section is unnecessary or a waste of money? Is this EVER raised in any other context apart from childbirth when patients are choosing between treatment options? Have you looked at compensation payouts for babies damaged at birth, and the virtually non-existent proportion of those that are born by elective section? The cost of the (not very satisfactory) options to repair pelvic floor damage from vaginal birth? The cost of mental health damage and loss of quality of life for women injured by birth?

The OP's primary duty is to her own health, safety and welfare, and that of her children. She has no duty of care for NHS costs. She certainly shouldn't be expected to sacrifice her mental health to theoretically save a few shillings (when there is no evidence for that saving anyway).

Plus there is no way to guarantee she won't have a section, only that she won't have a calm, planned, safest possible section.

TammySwansonTwo Thu 17-May-18 16:10:19

Ignore idiots like Beaky. I suffered from debilitating tokophobia while pregnant, and I had to fight for an elective section, although I was already under consultant led care as I was having twins. They still delayed agreeing til as late as possible, and then I ended up needing an emcs earlier anyway. Most who haven’t experienced this simply do not understand. I knew that if I had a traumatic vaginal birth I would struggle to function at all when my children were born.

Keep fighting. Contact Birth Rights for help flowers

Bowlofbabelfish Thu 17-May-18 16:27:51

Your body,your choice, more NHS money wasted on an unnecessary operation

Actually from a cost/benefit analysis it isn’t as simple as that. A simple birth costs about 3k, a simple c section costs about 9k. But that apparent 6k saving isn’t all it appears - when you factor in the cost of x percent of those women forced to give birth vaginally who subsequently need:

Perineal repair down the line
Prolapse therapy
Psychological therapy
Bladder/rectocele repair
Time off work for above items
Incontinence support

And the increase in morbidity in infants (because yes the infant mortality and morbidity rate is higher in VB)

You actually find that apparent cost differential vanishes. So no, beaky it’s not wasted money. If you give women free choice the c rate tops out in the low thirties in western countries anyway. When you cost in damage repair / infant support afterwards it’s no cheaper to do VBs. that’s before you go down the path of morally giving women a birth that won’t result in trauma.

The reason the ‘cheaper up front’ dogma persists is because none of the downstream consequences are bourne financially by obs - it’s more general surgery etc who take the cost.

I personally (yes yes anecdata) know at least three women with lifelong, debilitating pelvic damage after being forced to give birth vaginally. All have had to have time off work, suffered depression, economic loss, and physical impairment due to damage.

Fuck that. Give women informed choice.

droppedlasagna Fri 18-May-18 12:52:41

@Bowlofbabelfish Absolutely, plus the 'cost argument' also works on the assumption that all women who don't choose c-section will have a smooth, straightforward vaginal birth with no issues during or after. Seems to forget that if you don't choose an elective you still have reasonable odds of an emergency c-section (sometimes as high as 50% depending on different factors), an instrumental vaginal delivery in theatre or other complications that increase the cost considerably.

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