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Things you didn't know BEFORE having a baby?

(57 Posts)
OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 10:36:11

Just anything really!
I think it's ridiculous that I know more about pregnancy, labour and childbirth NOW than I did BEFORE and WHEN I had my son because NOBODY mentions these things, not even midwives during your antenatals! No one goes over what can potentially happen so you can be a bit more prepared and have a heads up!

I didn't know...
...you could tear muscles.
...you could tear your anal sphincter.
...there was such thing as a 4th degree tear! (just didn't think it was possible - WTF!)
...what 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th degree meant - I thought a tear was a tear.
...that episiotomies deliberately cut through muscle and the injury was also INSIDE!
...that episiotomies can cause further tearing!
...you could have other injuries as well as a tear, eg. laceration, graze etc.
...you could tear inside as well!
...that sometimes your stitches come apart and you will be left like it!
...that they don't always suture 1st degree tears - I thought they suture ANY injury!
...that they sometimes do c-sections unnecessarily as it's major surgery that interferes with subsequent pregnancies and births - I thought they considered it a bit more!
...the damage forceps deliveries can cause!
...that they sometimes intervene unnecessarily!
...that not ALL midwives are nice, caring, sympathetic or compassionate.
...that maybe you might NOT be told what injuries you have and what stitches they've done.
...that you wont always have full knowledge of what's going on because they wont tell you. EVER!
...they don't always explain why they intervened!
...that they can sometimes accidentally stitch into your rectum, then have to re-do the stitches! shock
...they did an internal exam afterwards and might not tell you what they're doing or why!
...that they don't always ask or wait for consent!
...that they sometimes do a manual removal! (thought you got taken to theatre or wait for retained placenta to come out on it's own! Why is it usually male doctors that do it as well? They have bigger hands!!)

The only reason I knew you bled after having a baby is because when I was about 11 or 12, I saw my sister in hospital just after she had her 2nd. She got up and dripped all over the floor.

Despite the typical stereotypes of babies crying 24/7, you can have an easy-going and quiet baby too that WILL sleep!

I also didn't even think about the fact that wherever you tear or get cut, you will have scars! And that scar tissue will be tight, uncomfortable and annoying, but you're stuck with it (even if you don't know why they cut you in the first place!!)! I guess I didn't think about the biology or physics behind having a baby!

I think that's everything, might think of more, but... anyone else not know any of this stuff? Or is it just me?

elelfrance Tue 24-Nov-15 10:43:25

There's some serious worst-case scenario things in there, along with some stuff thats true... but not all those bad outcomes are common, and i can see an argument for not freaking out every pregnant woman with every single possible thing that could go wrong

cookielove Tue 24-Nov-15 10:43:52

If your post just trying to scare the shit out of everyone???

SouthYarraYobbo Tue 24-Nov-15 10:47:12

The unsympathetic mw one was a shock to me too. I just assumed they'd all be nice and helpful hmm

That your hormones can leave you a blabbering mess 9 weeks on blush

SallyStarbuck Tue 24-Nov-15 10:54:44

You had an unfortunate birth by the sounds of it.

But realistically, I don't think that women can be educated on every single thing that could go wrong during the birth. You can attend antenatal classes, you can read books, you can try and educate yourself with what might happen.

But if medical staff decide an intervention is needed, they don't always have the time to sit down and explain it in detail.

TinklyLittleLaugh Tue 24-Nov-15 10:55:14

Yep, I've had four kids, so at least eight midwives. I'd say half were actually nice, one was neutral and three were utter bitches. I wasn't even any trouble; gritted my teeth, had minimal pain relief and did as I was told.

I didn't know about the lochia thing either, or about how painful it is when your milk comes in. I didn't know that breastfeeding stops your periods either.

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 11:02:37

That's why I didn't put it in Childbirth. (pregnant women go to Childbirth, then after they come to Parenting - presumably everyone who comes here is already a parent!)

But then when it happens, you're left to figure it out for yourself and questioning how often it happens! If you get given the impression of "Don't worry, you'll be fine, the midwives will help and support you through it" you feel shit because that didn't happen! Then feel really alone because no one else has ever mentioned it! Some of these things can be avoided if you're informed.

I just thought I could trust the midwives to tell me the right thing, it's not my fault they didn't!

I didn't know about Birth Trauma either.

yeOldeTrout Tue 24-Nov-15 11:05:31

how far away baby girl wee can travel. It flies thru the air, honestly (I thought only baby boys could do that!)

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 11:07:22

*You had an unfortunate birth by the sounds of it.

But realistically, I don't think that women can be educated on every single thing that could go wrong during the birth. You can attend antenatal classes, you can read books, you can try and educate yourself with what might happen.

But if medical staff decide an intervention is needed, they don't always have the time to sit down and explain it in detail.*

I did. But it was because of the way it was handled.

And sometimes there is time to explain why, but if there isn't they should explain to you afterwards, which I have read should happen.

I mean basic things like why intervention is needed and what happens AFTER.

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 11:09:42

BTW not all of this happened to me... Some of it I've read on here - so if I were to have another baby, I now know all of this when I didn't before! Doesn't that put me in the same boat as a pregnant woman or women TTC?

Lozza1990 Tue 24-Nov-15 11:23:03

- Nobody told me you could be in labour for days (which I was)
- Nobody told me I could be sent home in the middle of the night while having contractions because 'I had time'
- Nobody told me that the peaceful water birth that the midwives had greatly encouraged me to have was out of my hands
- Nobody told me that the whole team of midwives would come running in as if something was seriously wrong 'as a precaution' (they did this to me twice)

And I didn't know you bled afterwards either! At least not for weeks and weeks..

Lozza1990 Tue 24-Nov-15 11:26:26

I hated the picture the midwives tried to paint to me that you can have a wonderful water birth if you want to and you WILL be able to breastfeed. I couldn't do either and ended up crying for days about it, whereas if someone had just told me birth is gonna suck whatever happens and formula is not rat poison I might have been ok

elelfrance Tue 24-Nov-15 11:26:51

OP what do you think should have been done differently? who should have taken the time to explain all those possible problems to you? i can't imagine MWs during labour having the time to do it

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 11:39:35

ele She had time to tell me 'you're getting tight' before cutting me, but she could have said 'you're baby needs to be born now'.
Then when I was told 'he's a bit shocked from the quick delivery', she should have said 'We're really sorry, we needed to get him out because his heart rate dropped, he's fine now'. Something like that would have put me at ease.

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 11:44:13

I felt like I got bombarded by the doctor after the midwife ran out. And made a split second decision to intervene and I didn't know why for 3 years therefore developed PTSD because I felt like she attacked me for her convenience. It could have been prevented.

Pebbles601 Tue 24-Nov-15 12:00:14

Pregnant with my first and so should not have read this post! shock

mmmuffins Tue 24-Nov-15 12:02:54

Jesus I wished I hadn't clicked on this. Your title insinuates a possibly light-hearted thread about becoming a parent, instead it's a list of horrible shit that can happen to you during childbirth.

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 12:22:23

Jeez if people are going to get offended by the truth, I'll get it bloody deleted then? hmm

just hope you don't end up with birth trauma at some point because no one told you about it, if you do no one will listen either

Eachpeachpearplum1985 Tue 24-Nov-15 12:23:12

That breast feeding would be painful from the off and my nipples would turn into black scabs by the end of day 1! I switched to formula because I couldn't put DS near me due to the pain. I wish I'd been prepared with nipple shields, breast pump etc and I wish I'd known that I could have tried to resume breast feeding once my nipples had healed a bit. I thought after a week of not using them it was game over but apparently not? I felt like such a failure for months afterwards.

Also didn't know that once my waters had broken (quite spectacularly!) That it would just keep on coming out throughout labour! Was very soggy!

Luckily my friend had pre-warned me about the doctor sticking a finger up your bum to check for tears else that would have been a bit of a shocker confused!

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 12:29:04

So... you can talk about this in Postnatal Health but not in Parenting when it's part of being a mum especially if you have to live with it?

Not my fault if someone clicks on it.

SallyStarbuck Tue 24-Nov-15 12:31:35

I think it's because the title says "before having a baby", not "things you didn't know about giving birth". So if people are sensitive and trying to avoid threads about birth, the title doesn't quite say they should avoid this.

Needaninsight Tue 24-Nov-15 12:33:27

It's reality! A lot of that happened to me - both birth times!

And I don't think it's that rare either. I only have one friend who had a totally drama free birth.

OhMakeMeOver Tue 24-Nov-15 12:35:47

But then if I put 'giving birth' I didn't want to offend some that had a c-section as they can be sensitive (some feel they didn't birth a baby)
There would obviously be someone to pipe in with 'what about us mums that had c-sections? Do we not count?'
People assume 'giving birth' just applies to vaginal deliveries.

I might delete it anyway as clearly no one wants to acknowledge it.

Bishboshbash Tue 24-Nov-15 12:36:08

That's a lovely attitude to have OP!

I'm sorry you had such a tough time but that doesn't mean that everyone will have the same experience. I think a lot of people would rather not know the worst case scenario and just deal with it as it happens. Have you had the chance to over what happened to you with a consultant?

SouthYarraYobbo Tue 24-Nov-15 12:40:26

Don't delete it OP. There are always posters who find something offensive. I'm sure an intelligent person can read a few lines of your OP and work out if they can handle reading the rest.

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