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Feel bad for my friend....

(12 Posts)
SavannahRose Mon 03-Oct-11 17:37:32


I am 14 weeks pregnant my friend is 21 weeks pregnant. She is a larger lady but is being really victimised by her midwife. She has completely stopped smoking when she was about 10 weeks, eats healthy etc. But her midwife is being a cow, want to say something else really. She's sending her to healthy eating classes, she knows what to eat, has put her on all different kinds of tablets when her bloods showed normal, and now she has refused her a water birth by saying she is in her own words 'too fat'
I have told her to change midwives as she is so depressed with this one it is getting her down. Every time she asks her midwife a question the response she gets is I don't know. I feel so sorry for her. She also longed for a baby girl and just found out she's having a boy, but she's ok about it now.
Can anyone help with the water birth part? I understand the risk of her collapsing and them not being able to get her up but she's not that big and she could collapse anywhere, surely?
A worried friend smile

Imnotaslimjim Mon 03-Oct-11 17:41:13

When you say "larger lady" how much larger? I'm a size 20, and didn't have any trouble while pg. I had one comment that I hadn't been for GTT, but when I questioned why I would need it if the only factor was my weight, then dropped it.

For a water birth, there is certain criteria that has to be met. I wanted a waterbirth but couldn't because I had SPD and they wouldn't have been able to get me out had anything happened

Only thing I can suggest is she asks for a 2nd opinion, and find out what the guidelines are

SavannahRose Mon 03-Oct-11 17:49:10

I've read up about if anything happened and they can't get her out but that's just the same as if she collapsed on the floor and getting her up from there.she's about 14-16 stone? She has no problems, her blood pressure is fine, iron everything! I keep telling her she's not that big but she's been made to feel MASSIVE which is really unfair sad

sevensevenseven Mon 03-Oct-11 17:57:12

If she calls the hospital's ante-natal unit she should be able to get the number of her MW's supervisor to make a complaint and possibly see another MW instead. If all else fails could she afford to see a private MW? With the healthy eating classes her MW can advise her to go but cannot force her to go, ultimately it's up to your friend really.

WRT the water birth, it's not just down to the risk of collapsing. If her BMI is above 30 she won't be able to have one because of the risk of complications arising from having a high BMI (no judgement, my BMI is also above 30). The only way she may be able to get around it is to consider paying a private mw and having a home birth, although only your friend will know if that's something she'd consider.

sleepevader Mon 03-Oct-11 18:30:57

Bollocks about bmi. Mine is way higher than 30 and midwife happy to do water birth until I had other complications which means hospital only now (no pool there)

I think she needs to speak to director of midwife and remember she has the right to make her own choices after being told all the risks/benefits.

SavannahRose Mon 03-Oct-11 18:32:58

Thanks sleepevader cheered me up smile

The bollocks made me giggle!

sevensevenseven Mon 03-Oct-11 20:31:29

No offence meant sleepevader. In my area you're not allowed either a home birth or a water birth with a BMI above 30. I assumed it was the same right across the NHS.

In that case she needs to find out if her MW is following hospital policy, albeit not very tactfully or just being a bitch.

TimeWasting Mon 03-Oct-11 20:38:58

They can't refuse you a home birth, or a water birth at home. They can refuse to let you use their pool though.

She can refuse to go to healthy eating class. I was simply 'unable' to attend the appointment they made.

Women with a higher BMI are now prescribed extra folic acid, so if that's one of the medications she's been prescribed it's not victimisation, just the latest guidelines.

It does sound like the midwife isn't very sympathetic at all though, and she should def ask to see someone else instead.

LizzyMathsWhizzy Mon 03-Oct-11 20:47:22

Another mumsnetter once told me to always ask your midwife "is this a universal policy, or specific advise for me" If it is universal, then you have a right to refuse, unless they can give you medical evidence. Your friend could also consider a home birth and hire her own pool if she was dead set on a water birth. If she tells the midwife she is considering this, the midwife may realise she is serious, and might be willing to compromise on the water birth part with certain conditions in place. Tell your friend to write notes before and during her meetings with the midwife, so she doesn't over emotionalise things (easily done when pregnant, no offense meant). That way she won't leave thinking, damn I forgot to say...

sleepevader Mon 03-Oct-11 21:05:02

sevensevenseven - the bollocks was for the midwife not you!

BMI can raise risks but again its about informed choices.

I could opt to home birth my baby to get the water birth I wanted once the MLU made it clear they wouldnt be happy to have me due to potential blood sugar level with my baby. I weighed it all up and decided to go to the main hospital.

Your friend has similar choices she needs to make. Sadly with such an unsupportive midwife she may find the information she needs to make this choices hard to get.

Nearlycooked Mon 03-Oct-11 22:24:22

I got this response initially form a very emotionally retarded consultant - EVERY other health professional I have had contact with since were appalled by her refusal to allow a water birth (health and safety - wouldn't be able to get me out of the pool if needed - bloody rubbish!! No MEDICAL reason) they all saw no reason for me to have one and I have a BMI of 35. I then informed my mid wife and NEW consultant that if I was being refused a water birth at hospital for such a ridiculous reason I would be having one at home - amazing how quickly the decision was reversed and now I have full backing to have hospital water birth. I am also 39.

notlettingthefearshow Tue 04-Oct-11 00:14:01

She sounds about the same size as me and I've not been treated like that. Perhaps it depends if she has related problems like high blood pressure? They may have different rules depending on where you live. If she is considered a high risk consultant case, then no she probably would not be allowed a hospital pool birth. To be honest I would accept that - but then I am one of those people who does whatever the doctors tell me is best for m!

My BMI is just over 30 so they did tell me not to put on too much weight - which I haven't, but as it turns out they haven't monitored my weight at all.

I had to have the GTT for gestational diabetes, which I was my main concern, but luckily I was fine. She should definitely do that and accept any additional tests they suggest - it is important to identify potential problems as early as possible.

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