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Anyone had a home birth?

(38 Posts)
GillyMac93 Thu 27-Mar-14 06:28:34

I'm thinking about a home water birth , but iv yet to come across anyone I know in rl who has had a home birth .if anyone could share their experience of home birth ,I'd really appreciate it .

jennifersofia Tue 08-Apr-14 14:11:50

Had my 3 at home, all very positive. I was lucky though, and had very textbook pregnancies. I think the best thing is to give birth in the place where you feel you can relax the most. For some that is in hospital for me it was at home. I had supportive care, with 2-3 midwives attending each birth. If you are interested, and all is well health wise, go for it!

IdaClair Tue 08-Apr-14 14:19:59

I had a home birth for my first baby.

Then I did it again for my second baby.

I had a lot of 'just you wait' but tbh I think people just say that anyway. People like to bring you down and there's always someone with an opinion about pregnancy, birth and babycare.

I cannot imagine going to hospital for birth, it seems to me a very odd thing to do, so much of others' tales of birth and brand new baby hood just don't feature in my experiences at all. My 'birth stories' consist of going into labour, calling a MW, MW arrives, baby is born, MW goes home. I have occasionally felt left out in conversations about packing hospital bag, hospital tours, experiences on wards, tales of examinations and procedures and inductions and surgeries, being 'let out', coming home outfits, etc, and the baby books with their bits for first nighttime at home, first visitors at home, hospital bracelet, all that stuff, look a bit bare - but on the whole I'm glad to have nothing to share!

mandbaby Tue 08-Apr-14 14:29:40

I would quite like a homebirth for DC3 but there are a couple of things that worry me.

DS2 arrived very quickly - in just over an hour, and I'm worried DC3 will arrive even quicker (which is one of the reasons why I DO want a homebirth - I'd rather give birth at home than in the back of a car!) But my hubby is seriously squeamish. If baby makes a sudden appearance (i.e the midwife/ambulance doesn't arrive in time) there is no way my hubby will do anything - and I know that for a fact. He can't even be in the same room as me if I'm having blood taken. During the births of DS1 and DS2 he stayed by my head looking away from the action. I don't think it will make for a pleasant, calm labour if I'm having to cut cords, etc, myself.

Having said all that though, it wouldn't be any different if I'm in my own bedroom/bathroom or in the back of a cab. Either way, if a midwife isn't there, I'm doing it alone. I'm probably more worried about this labour than I was about my first two - just because I'm expecting it to happen so quickly.

mandbaby Tue 08-Apr-14 14:32:26

Can I ask a question - something that I've always wondered, but never remembered to ask.

If you call the MW when you go into labour, I'm assuming that there is a MW on duty just for homebirths. Well what if someone else is in labour and she's busy?! Then what? How many "on call" midwives are there?! What if they're ALL busy?

Am I being stupid?

JennerOSity Tue 08-Apr-14 14:40:46

I believe that legally they cannot refuse to attend a labouring woman so would have to find someone from somewhere. So if you call and they say no-one is free you will have to come in, you could just tell them no and they can't argue though they may try to pressure you perhaps. Might not make you popular with the manager but the midwife sent is not likely to mind as it is a comparatively lighter workload. smile

JennerOSity Tue 08-Apr-14 14:43:36

In my area I was only the second homebirth they had done in 6 months!!! So the midwife resource wasn't scattered around dozens of homes, but in fact were all at the hopsital anyway, so sending one over was not a major issue, the Hb was planned so they were expecting the call, I asked this question and was advised it was exceedingly unlikely there wouldn't be someone available because of these things.

mandbaby Tue 08-Apr-14 14:47:12

I'm at least a 20 minute drive from the hospital - that's in zero traffic by someone who knows exactly where they're going.

If I called the hospital and they sent someone, I bet it would take them at least 40 minutes to arrive and I'm terrified I will have delivered by then!

Ditto if it happens during a week day. Hubby's work is about 35-40 minutes away from home - in good traffic. I'm terrified I'm gonna be all alone with my terrifed children watching and listening to me scream! They'll be scarred for life!

LizzieMint Tue 08-Apr-14 14:50:59

I planned home waterbirths for all of mine but only actually got one for the second two - first time was a quick induction because baby was in distress.
But the home water births were amazing, you can't appreciate just how helpful the water is with labouring until you are there, I know a lot of people say it's like a plaster on a broken leg but honestly it helps soooo much. Even if you end up going to hospital, I'd highly recommend water births.
Logistically, we hired a pool first time (which was never used) and bought a 'birth pool in a box' for the second and used it again for the third. It's well insulated because it's full of air, if you need to warm the water up you just top up with hot water. Both times I was in the water for a very short time (about 45 mins and 10 mins) so didn't need that. H emptied it all out (with a pump) and it has a disposable liner you just throw away. I loved them and would highly recommend it. grin I'd choose to give birth again any day over being pregnant.

JennerOSity Tue 08-Apr-14 14:51:11

Actually ambulances are usually strategically positioned around an area, not 'back at base' waiting for a call. For example the main road junction near me usually has an ambulance parked in the lay-by waiting for a call. So they don't set out to you to do a complete return journey, like taxi companies they will send the nearest one. They will put the blues on and skip all red lights if they have to. So it would have to be a seriously urgent problem for it to be a risk, if something that serious is developing the attending mw's would send you in before it came to that.

LizzieMint Tue 08-Apr-14 14:54:00

Mandbaby, in our area they have two sets of midwives (you're usually attended by 2). In my case as I have very quick labours I guess they'd send an ambulance and paramedics. Otherwise they would pressure you to go in, which you can refuse to do of course. However, given that only 4%(?) of births in this country are home births, you'd have to be seriously unlucky to come across this I would think.

IdaClair Tue 08-Apr-14 14:58:20


I have had precipitous birth. I was all prepared for a very fast birth, and no way was I leaving the house. I gave everyone the heads up - mws, marked it on notes all over, said I need someone ASAP when I call, wrote out numbers for mws and stuck them by each phone so anyone could ring, kept my mobile in my pocket all the time, prepared a grab bag of birth essentials which I kept next to me all the time in case I suddenly nape ban to give birth without notice.

Most importantly I got DP to exorcise his demons and was frank about the possibility of my giving birth either on my own (I read emergency childbirth, you can get it on amazon) with just him there, with the kids there.

I prepared my older child, who knew exactly what would happen at a baby's birth - being born by Sheila kit zinger, hello baby, good books, but also watched real births online, answered every question in advance. Also knew how to ring MW, how to explain what was happening, how to open door for emergency services, what might happen if the baby comes suddenly.

In the end it was not as fast, so I had notice, and the labour was a leisurely 1 hour 40 minutes. My dc chose to stay and be involved, having learned so much, and was not in the least terrified.

If a baby is coming fast it is usually a good thing, and all you need to do is go with it (and don't worry about cords, we did nothing with our for over a hour after birth, plenty of time for that later)

IdaClair Tue 08-Apr-14 14:59:46

As for who attends, depends on the area. They have a home birth team here based on labour ward. They do try and tell people they are busy and cannot come but that is tough. I gave them 9 months notice and they will attend me.

nogeybose Mon 28-Apr-14 23:04:08

Great thread thank you.

Sarah SPT, I gather you can hire birth pools for a few weeks just so it's around when you need it. You might be able to do this through NHS where you live, or use a private company. And I think the water temperature depends how much you want to spend - deluxe ones will maintain the temperature, whereas cheaper ones seem to be more like glorified paddling pools.

I've seen unused pools on eBay for less than the hire price though, so it might be worth considering buying one.

Which home birth pool does everybody recommend please? So far I've looked at Birth Pool In A Box and La Bassine.

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