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What do I do? A childbirth / childcare quandary..

(15 Posts)
Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 21:45:32

spinkbean is due in Jan. ds will be 22mo.
We would love some help around the time bean arrives - last time I was very sore for the 1st 3 weeks, and I'm a bit nervous about us managing with ds too, if I'm the same this time. And we need a plan for the actual birth, in terms of childcare for ds.

We don't have many friends locally, and none with children, those with children are all an hour+ away.

ds has just started at a nursery 2 days a week (9-3) and they are flexible enough to take him at short notice if I go into labour on a weekday between 7am and 6pm.. hmm

Dh's dad lives 2 hours drive away, but he is not really comfortable looking after ds. SIL works long hours, and lives just over an hour away. She'd love to help, but is limited to weekends.

My family all live on the continent, 2.5 hours away by plane. mum and dad came to stay with us (in our small 2 bed flat) for a month when ds was born. Having them there was wonderful in some ways but horrendous in others. My mum and I had a huge row, a lot of very painful things were said. It was awful, and thinking about it still makes me shudder.

We try to see my parents a few times a year, because I love them and because we really would like them to have a good relationship with ds and new bean. Mum, especially, is brilliant with ds, he adores her, and I trust her completely. She does things differently to me, but who cares, he loves being with her and seems to trust her even if he doesn't see her that often.

So. We had hoped we'd move house before bean's EDD, but what with housing slumps and credit crunches, it just isn't going to happen. We're still in the small flat. Dh and I agreed, after last time, that anything more than a weekend stay (for any guests) is pushing it (guests tend to stay on the sofa bed in the open plan living room/kitchen, and need to go through our bedroom to get to the bathroom).

I think my mum is still stinging a bit from the stay here when ds was born. I've said to her that I'd love it if they could be around when bean is due, and that it would be lovely if they could meet him/her early on, as well as being a HUGE help to us with ds.
She has kind of ignored this, and said that they were thinking of coming over for a long weekend at Christmas. I don't know how to talk about it with her.
We've got no solutions to the accommodation problem, which it all boils down to.
Ideally, it would be great if they could be around for a couple of weeks after bean is born. Last minute flights around new year time will be extortionate though, and we've nowhere to put them.

Oh, and I'm hoping for a home birth, just to put that into the mix.

Anyone got a magic wand??
Or can give me a good talking to about alternatives?

Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 21:46:00

sorry... didn't realise how long that was! blush

Habbibu Wed 27-Aug-08 21:48:51

Any holiday apartments to rent nearby? Is money a problem?

liahgen Wed 27-Aug-08 21:49:54

Post natal Doula maybe?

cmotdibbler Wed 27-Aug-08 21:53:47

Can you afford a doula ? A postnatal doula will help around the house and with the baby, and I imagine they'll help with DS during birth, esp a homebirth.

Also, is there a b&B/Travelodge near you that you could afford to book your mum into ? Then you could say 'I'd love to have you visit, you know its a nightmare in this flat to have you to stay, so we'll put you up in the hotel - how do you feel about that ?', and I bet she'd find it hard to turn it down

Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 21:54:26

Habbibu - that would be great, and in fact I rented one when mum came to stay for a month earlier in the year (dh was away with work). But money is really really tight so that is not an option now. Really tight. Dh is freelance, and hasn't worked for 5 months.
How much is a postnatal doula, liahgen?

yomellamoHelly Wed 27-Aug-08 21:54:35

Find a local b&b for your parents?

liahgen Wed 27-Aug-08 21:56:48

you would get a trainee for £10 per hour. Because she is a trainee wouldn't neccesarily mean she didn't know what she was doing, simply that she hadn't gone through recognition yet.


Where are you based, (roughly)

Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 21:57:14

cmot, that could work.. the main problem is that, especially because it is around Christmas/N Year, last minute flights are ridiculously expensive, and of course EDDs are too unreliable for us to book flights in advance.
Mum and Dad are not well off either, both retired, and the weakness of the pound at the moment is really affecting them.

liahgen Wed 27-Aug-08 21:57:37

or here

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 27-Aug-08 22:00:28

A month is a long time in a small flat... I'm not surprised that tempers got a little frayed last time round! Agree that post-natal doula would be worth investigating. Also, don't write off friends completely, have a chat with people - they may be really keen to help, even if it's just to take your toddler out for an hour or two, or pick up shopping etc.

I'm in slightly similar sit, due at Christmas, toddler DS, planning for homebirth. We are having a birth and post-natal doula, my mum is also coming to stay. She's going to have to sleep in DS's room as we don't have a spare room so hope it will be ok. I'm a bit concerned about asking anyone else as it is Christmas blah blah. Sure it will all work out somehow!

Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 22:01:50

liahgen - thank you! smile - we're in Brighton.

Ok, that sounds really positive. Mum and dad could then get a flight booked for late jan instead of Christmas, when we 'know' bean will be here, and can stay with us (gulp) for a couple of nights and maybe a couple of nights in travelodge/b&b...

I actually can't believe I didn't think of it myself - we had a fab trainee doula for ds' birth, I just hadn't considered that a doula's role could be less with the birth, and more with general helping hold things together for us!!

Spink Wed 27-Aug-08 22:03:54

Rhinestone - oh, I hope it works out for us both!!
I know what you mean about asking, I am really bad at it, tend to assume that people will be too busy/ think I'm taking the piss etc and so don't ask.
Praps it is time to bite the bullet. Argh

LynetteScavo Wed 27-Aug-08 22:12:20

HI Spink - I'm a little tiddly, so forgive me if my psot is odd.

You are planning a home birth, which is great if you have no child care. I did this with my 3rd. We had no child care, and fortunately I didn't end up being transfered to hostpital or anything horendous. (If I had, I would have been alone while DH stayed with DC's)

I was over due, but refused to be induced, s I had no childcare. Afterwards, yes it was tricky, but DH went back to work after 2 days off, adn I just had to get on with it, sore or not. ( I went back to bed the next weekend and pretended I'd just given bith grin)

I just want you to know it is doable, and not to panic, although it sounds a horendous headache re; childcare etc, now, it will be OK!

Spink Thu 28-Aug-08 22:16:10

Lynette smile not odd at all! thanks for the reassurance.

I have to remind myself that plenty of people do this kind of thing all the time, and of course it is manageable.

And, it's not likely that this birth will be like the last! maybe me saying "sore" underplayed it a bit.. it is no exaggeration to say I couldn't sit (valley cushion or not) for the first 2 weeks, shock and walking was a real problem the first few days.
The idea of that combined with looking after ds too, and no help, does make me go a bit cold.

I suppose if I'm honest, a bit of it is slightly hurt feelings that mum isn't jumping for joy at the idea of being here and wanting to talk births and babies!! ah the delusional state of entitlement that being a child can bring with it grin

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