Having a home birth, shall i have my other child there?

(8 Posts)
florenceCamellia Mon 21-Mar-16 22:07:31

So I had my first baby at home, all went textbook, perfect, everything was amazing and i thoroughly enjoyed it! Now I'm pregnant again and planning another home birth but I'm wondering if i should have my first child there with me as she will only be 18 months by the due date....
Has anyone been through anything similar? Had experience with home birth and other kids?
TIA smile

TiredOfSleep Tue 22-Mar-16 19:13:29

You might get a better response in pregnancy, and I don't have personal experience myself, but I'd say plan to have someone you can call on to look after DD for the labour.

One of the advantages of a home birth is you're not having to get someone up in the middle of the night to look after your LO when you head to the hospital, but as you'll want your partner there to support you, you don't want to be worrying about DD too.

Ideally you'll labour for some of the time when DD is asleep, and have someone over to keep an eye for the end. I think it's lovely that they get to be part of the experience, and meeting LO soon after is likely to help bonding.

ReallyTired Thu 24-Mar-16 03:13:38

It's lovely having your first child there to meet the new baby. You will need an adult to look after the older child and it's probably a good idea to have them in a different part of the house for much of the labour. My son didn't witness the birth of his sister because I was worried he might be traumatised if there were any complications. It was lovely to have him come into the room as soon as she was born.

Sometimes child birth does not go to plan and you need to be prepared for that possibility.

Qwebec Thu 24-Mar-16 03:19:36

You need to have someone to take care of your other child. I know someone who was deeply traumatized even 50 years after witnessing the difficult birth of a sibling.

Binkybix Thu 24-Mar-16 18:25:35

We had mil with us and she took DS out for the day when I felt the day had come! Had a couple of hours after the birth to sort myself out then introduced them when he arrived home.

Personally I would not want to labour with a toddler in the house!

RancidOldHag Thu 24-Mar-16 18:34:27

You really do need someone else there to look after your older DC (and to stay with her in case you need a hospital transfer).

But if all is going well (and you aren't noisy in labour, so she doesn't end up worried about you) then no reason why she shouldn't be nearby and meet her new sibling ASAP.

lemonymelanie Thu 24-Mar-16 18:36:35

Yes, I did - dh popped in and out from being with me and the midwives to sorting out the older 2. It worked perfectly.

After the 3rd was born, my children told me later, they had been sitting at the top of the stairs, and heard crying - and the little one said to his brother - why is mummy crying? And the big one said, that's not mummy, that's our new baby!

And they saw their new baby almost immediately ( within minutes) and we were all together and it was fab. And dh made the midwives a cup of tea and it was so relaxed.

2nd homebirth would have been the same, except it was a school day and I took them to school/nursery with early labour pains, dh drove home ( it was about 200 miles) and I set up the sofa bed and sheets /shower curtains - and wee one was born 2 hours later with the spring sunshine flooding through the windows.

One of the reasons I chose homebirth was because I had no help and was at a loss as to what to do with the older children - it just seemed so much easier to have a homebirth and have them at home with me. ( I know it's not for everyone but it was easier for me)

CityDweller Thu 24-Mar-16 22:13:52

My 2yo was there when I had a home birth. It wasn't particularly planned that way - we had intended for someone to come and whisk her off when the time came. But, as it was, she slept through most of my labour and by the time she woke up it was too late in the game to organise someone coming to collect her, etc (and I actually think it would have been more stressful for her to be taken off by a friend or neighbour in the midst of labour). We lived in a minuscule flat and I screamed the neighbourhood down pushing the baby out. DD seemed unfazed by it all - she got to eat breakfast in her bedroom watching Peppa Pig on the iPad, a one-off treat, and stay in her pjs until lunchtime. She came downstairs and helped me count contractions for a bit, went upstairs with DH for a bit, came down and told me I was being noisy, took one of the midwives upstairs to show her her toys and then when she came down again the baby was there.

The only downside to the whole thing was that once the midwives had gone (about 3 hours after the baby was born) we were left at home with a new baby and a toddler and had to hit the ground running with no one else around to help. It was an exhausting first 48 hrs until DD was back at the childminders...

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