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Thinking of home birth

(12 Posts)
massagegirl Sat 12-Jan-13 07:57:32

I'm 20 weeks today. Was originally set on hospital birth(midwife led unit) but have started thinking about home birth, which has surprised me.
I like the idea of being in our own home and can see lots of positives. My worry is as its my first I have no idea what to expect, what if I can't handle the pain or something goes wrong?
I'm just interested to hear other plans/ experienced really. Thank you!

TheBoyandTheButton Sat 12-Jan-13 08:03:49

Everyone I know that wanted a home birth for their first (but for whatever reason ended up in hospital) was afterwards relieved they didn't have it at home. But for a second child they would consider a home birth as they know what's happening with their bodies and how they personally will cope. I gave birth to both mine in midwife units and found that is what works best for me!

Grumpla Sat 12-Jan-13 08:15:07

I had both mine at home. It worked out really well for me (although I did have a few hmm faces from some family members the first time round!)

I don't like hospitals and my first pregnancy was a dream. My second pregnancy was much trickier as I developed SPD and I was worried about my hip / back seizing up. Both times I had a hospital bag packed just in case. I decided I would see how it went & go in to hospital if I had any problems. In the event all went well and I stayed at home.

Being at home was great - I had two midwives focused on me throughout labour, but they were very good at remaining in the background and letting me and DH get on with it. It was blissful being able to have a bath, make drinks, move around etc when I wanted. And it was sooo lovely being able to snuggle up in my own bed afterwards!

However I do know plenty of people who have had good labours in hospital too! Ultimately, make a plan but be flexible.

massagegirl Sat 12-Jan-13 09:06:56

Thank you both. I like the idea of seeing how it goes at home with bag packed just incase we needed to make a quick exit!

comeonbishbosh Sat 12-Jan-13 09:11:38

I had a home birth with DC1 and am now awaiting DC2. All went well for us and it was a v positive experience. So I would be encouraging on that score but ultimately whether it is right for you depends on the progress of your pregnancy and your own personality.

Things that I consider important:
Your partner is up for it (we had a useful book called something like home birth for dads. The way they are involved is a big plus point)
Supportive local policies and keen midwives.
Being an adaptable sort who can manage with making decisions on the go, and be open minded about possible need to transfer to hospital.
How close the hospital is.

Good luck! I had a number of friends who had had home births and it was great to chat through the practicalities with them.

CityDweller Sat 12-Jan-13 09:39:32

I'm planning to have my first at home - it feels like right decision for us (even though we live in a small flat). But I'm absolutely open to switching to hospital birth / transferring during labour if that's best for baby and me and we're close to hospital. My mw team don't book it in until 34 weeks, after the 28-wk bloods and 32-wk scan results. But you can change your mind from hm to hospital at any time (but not the other way around)...

There's a great homebirth website that you can find via a google search - tons of info and lots of positive birth stories.

massagegirl Sat 12-Jan-13 10:01:39

Thank you all this is really helpful.
Supportive partner. Hospital 4 miles away. Mw team who like home births!

ImKateandsoismywife Sat 12-Jan-13 10:03:19

I had a lovely homebirth with dc2 and really wish I had booked a homebirth for dc1. Speak to your mw about it, you can book a homebirth and change your mind when the time comes but you can't book a hospital birth and then decide to stay at home when you go into labour. I know lots of women who had homebirths and none of them regret their decision, even the ones who ended up transferring into hospital.

nannyl Sat 12-Jan-13 10:23:49

i had a homebirth with number 1 and will be with number 2...

there is a great FB site homebirthers and hopefuls.

You may find it quicker to transfer to labour unit from home than from hospital.

Everything you can do / have in a midwife unit you can do / have at home... except the midwife is with you ALL the time, doesnt have other stuff to do, and then at the end you have 2 midwives focussing soley on you.

at home you are more likely to be transfered because things arnt happening / progressing than because theres a problem. (midwives will suggest a transfer at first hint of any problem, so its unusual to go in a true emergancy)

Even IF there was an emergancy all the prep would be done in the ambulence, you would be taken straight in.....

CityDweller Sat 12-Jan-13 10:54:56

Just to add, I asked one of my community mw about her experience of people being transferred to hospital from home during labour and she said that in all the homebirths she'd attended the ones that transferred did so because labour 'wasn't progressing' and the mother wanted an epidural so she could get some rest - she'd never seen a 'blue light' transfer.

I do recommend talking it through with your mw. I tend to ask just a question or two about hb each mw visit, as they come to me. E.g. this last visit I asked how many mw were in my community team that might possibly attend my hb (20, apparently!).

And here's the really helpful website:

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 12-Jan-13 10:58:50

Start at home. Get mw support there. Travel to hospital as and when you feel you want to, or not.

Obviously you'll have to plan 'as if' you are going to give birth at home, but it really doesn't need to be such a concrete plan.

massagegirl Sat 12-Jan-13 11:33:48

Thank you everyone this is so helpful and has made my mind clearer once I chat to mw. Will check out that website and Fb page. Really great to hear some positive experiences!

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