First Time Dad (Twins!) Birth Advice(16 Posts)
First time dad poster to this forum looking for some advice.
My wife and I found out we were having twins, which was amazing but also a shock at the same time. We were a bit saddened only in a palling sense because it basically threw all our birth hopes, and the things we had learnt from friends etc. out of the window. So for example, all our plans about the Midwife Led Unit, water birth and all that has changed to consultant-led, on the labor ward with two of everyone for each baby and so on.
Basically, we have agreed that we are going to push as hard as we need to for there to be as little intervention as possible, unless obviously it's needed for safety. She wants to be in a pool if available for the pain relief, no automatic epidural unless she wants it or no automatic set up in the theater just 'cos it's twins, and no fucking way am I going home just 'cos of their visiting hours - our local hospital has a rep for being very capricious about this e.g our friend had a textbook delivery in the MLU and both her and dad got to both stay for like 3 days. On the other had a work acquaintance, whose wife had everything go wrong short of a c-sec was expected to bugger off after an hour or so 'cos the baby came after 9 pm.
My main issue is, how much of an advocate do I need to be for my wife not just at the birth but at the upcoming Obs sessions and such. She has a bit of an issue with 'authority' and is stubborn as a fucking mule - she's famed all around our circles for only being able to learn lessons the hard way etc. She has some specific issues that mean forceps and epitomizes and such are just no-nos, full stop. In the birth I am more than happy to be iron willed to keep her wishes, but how much can I push for things before? For example, I doubt I can just tell the midwife or Obs in our appointments tings that she should as she is the patient but I can't trust her to tell them herself things that are really in her best interest cos of her mental blocking.
Apologies for a long and rambling post but I am not close to my family and as I said our friends have all had it at MLUs with no issues. I would just appreciate some advice on how to be a good partner in terms of getting her wishes met.
The Dadsnet board is a bit of a deadzone, I'm afraid. I expect you'd be much better advice posting on the childbirth board. www.mumsnet.com/Talk/childbirth
If there's any doubt, we men may be a minority and lots of the discussions are naturally female-centred, but you find that you are welcome here.
You can be as forthright as you want. We'd planned a home water birth, which is almost what happened even at 42 weeks. Just be firm. As it happened, we ended up transferring to hospital (in an ambulance) after she was fully dilated due to an unforseen issue. On the day you'll probably just agree to whatever works, as long as there are good reasons.
In the lead up, if anyone suggests anything either of you are uncomfortable with, just ask them for the evidence backing up their approach. If they can't justify it, you don't have to agree to it, whether that be induction, pain relief or whatever.
You cannot demand to stay in hospital with her. If the hospital does not allow fathers to stay over night you will not be staying over night. Some hospitals do allow this so perhaps look into your local ones to see what options there are? In my hospital mothers of multiples get a private room but no overnight visitors. It's just the way it is.
I'm a twin mum and a doula who specialises in twin birth.
You have several choices.
Independent Midwife and homebirth
Change hospitals - ask to see their multiple birth guidelines/protocols
Get in touch with AIMS and/or Birthrights Both AIMS and Birthrights will be able to talk you through your options when dealing with options at hospital.
There have been cases of twins born in MLU, but it would depend where you are in the country and the hospital(s) near by.
Yes especially with twins, plan A B C etc agreed as far as practical before hand.
The father was probably able to stay as they had a private room. If this is what you want you will need to request any pay for it (and hope it is available). Demanding your "rights" to stay on a ward of women who are trying to get sleep after visiting hours will rightfully get you kicked out and possibly not let back in
You already sound like a nightmare to be honest. "No fucking way will I be leaving" hmmm - yup you will if they are the rules and you'll be removed if you don't comply. My dsis had twins and her husband wasn't allowed to stop and she had a c-section.
I think you need a really flexible birth plan. You say an episiotomy is a no go but you need to look at the what if's - what if it's to stop a massive tear happening? What if it's because they're a bit stuck and will come out with a bit of extra room? Are you really saying no episiotomy and straight to c-section?
no fucking way am I going home just 'cos of their visiting hours
You lost me here I'm afraid.
Women who have just given birth, who will be bleeding and in pain, trying to establish breastfeeding and feeling incredibly vulnerable, have a right to not have to sleep in a room with strange men.
Visiting hours are there for a reason. This is not all about you.
The postnatal ward is there for women recovering from childbirth. They must come first.
As for your wife's experience, she will need to write a detailed birth plan and do her research.
She can request a meeting with the Supervisor of Midwives at the labour ward, prior to the birth, to talk through her wishes and concerns. They will be understanding and accommodating where they can be.
Twin births are more risky, and your wife will need to take this into account.
Oh and drop the attitude as it won't get you far.
In the birth I am more than happy to be iron willed to keep her wishes, but how much can I push for things before? For example, I doubt I can just tell the midwife or Obs in our appointments tings that she should as she is the patient but I can't trust her to tell them herself things that are really in her best interest cos of her mental blocking.
No, you can't tell the midwife and OB how things should be. And yes, you can trust her to make the decisions about her best interest, because it's her birth. Hopefully when the new dad excitement wears off you will realise how you sound and back the fuck off. Worst case scenerio she won't let you in the room when she birth.
I can understand your wife's attitude to episiotomy and forceps - they were my biggest worries too. In the end I did have an episiotomy with DD1 as she came down the birth canal with her hand on her head. The thing is, pre-children, most of your big life experiences are about negotiation. But this is a very physical thing. Arguing about how your birth ought to be has a place (a large place) and there are things you can do to affect outcomes. But only affect - not dictate. In the end, if the baby's heart rate is dropping they will get the baby out ASAP. And you'll both be on board with that because the most important thing is everyone's health.
*"No fucking way am I going home just 'cos of visiting hours"
"She has an issue with authority... famed in our circle for learning things the hard way"*
You both are coming across as nightmares here tbh, and I feel sorry for any HCPs who have to deal with you. The visiting hours are there for a reason, and why should other women who've given birth and feel vulnerable, have to have strange men in the next cubicle from them? Some hospitals do let fathers stay overnight but others don't, and the last thing the staff need is some bloke kicking off because he doesn't like the rules.
Your wife's fears about forceps and episiotomies is understandable so do talk to the doctors and midwives about this and about pain relief options, as well as the chance of being able to use the MLU. If the MLU is in close proximity to labour ward then they may let you use it as they can transfer your wife quickly if it looks like something is going wrong.
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