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DH at the Birth?

(42 Posts)
Holly29 Fri 23-Feb-07 17:43:10

OK, so I had quite a difficult conversation with DH last night about birth partners. I had somehow assumed he would be the birth partner, but he said to me that he didn't think he could bear (a) watching me be in the most pain he's ever seen me, without being able to do anything about it and (b) seeing that much blood/stitching etc. It is true that he faints at the sight of blood sometimes and he can't watch Casualty or any other medical programme with screaming like a big girl's blouse.

I had kind of expected him to get over this -especially as I have to get over my fear of hospitals and blood also! - but I don't think he will. I didn't give him a hard time, I just listened, but I need to know what to say to him about it really.

I'm just a bit scared about having no one there I know at the birth. Does anyone have any experience of their DH/DP saying this? Should I ask my sister? Am a bit thrown by it all.

lulumama Fri 23-Feb-07 17:45:37

ask your sister! have a doula!

do not force the issue with him..maybe he can come to the hospital, and wait outside the room and if he feels able, can come in with you, and certainly come in once baby is delivered?

he can be at the non action end, holding your hand....

maybe say you understand his feelings and his fears, and reach a compromise of sorts. but if he is adamant he won;t want to be in the room, you cna;t force him! and you don;t want to be in labour worrying about him or seeing him hit the deck!

doormat Fri 23-Feb-07 17:45:46

dont let him off so easy

he played his part in the making
he can be there for the birth

my dh faints at the sight of blood but he didnt at any of the births

taylormama Fri 23-Feb-07 17:47:54

yes - my DH said this - also can't stomach Casualty etc etc - i said if he could be there then great and if not, fine. My mum was my other birth partner. As it happened DH stayed with me for the whole birth - watched DS being born and cut the cord <<proud emoticon>> - surprised himself and me.

taylormama Fri 23-Feb-07 17:48:29

yoo hoo lulu the super doula!

Saturn74 Fri 23-Feb-07 17:50:45

He may find that once your labour starts he gets involved with the whole process, and he's absolutely fine. Midwives are very good at occupying partners if necessary - my DH was given the very important job of monitoring the machine that went 'bing', in case the red light came on. Only afterwards did we realise that it didn't have a red light.
I think you should have a back-up plan in case he really does bottle out though - is there someone else who you could ask?
I also think that your welfare and your need for him to be there to support you should come before his squeamishness, and I wouldn't have let DH get away with it!

lulumama Fri 23-Feb-07 17:50:47

hiya tm !! <<waves >>

Incodnito Fri 23-Feb-07 17:52:11

My partner used to have to leave the room when casualty was on, couldnt watch any medical programmes.
But do you know what, there wasnt anywhere else he would rather have been when i was in labour.

Your husband needs to get a grip, it is the one time when you really will need his support. Its not like he has to do anything or look at anyhing he doesnt want to, he doesnt have to be near the business end.

My partner loved the whole experience, watched baby's head crowning, held my leg, cut the cord etc.

He didnt feel queasy at all.
He now has a stomach of steel and can watch anything on tv now.


FluffyMummy123 Fri 23-Feb-07 17:53:38

Message withdrawn

Miaou Fri 23-Feb-07 17:55:26

Agree with lulu - tbh I think the less pressure you put on him, the more likely he is to feel that he can be there at the time. Ask someone else to be your birth partner - mum, sister, friend, whoever! - or hire a doula - and tell your dh that you would love for him to be there but if not then you can both relax knowing that you are getting the support you need.

My dh has been with me at all three births and will be there for no.4, but if he didn't want to be/couldn't be I wouldn't mind - by that point in labour I honestly don't know/care who is there anyway! I really don't think people should be forced to be in the labour room if they don't want to be.

lulumama Fri 23-Feb-07 17:56:10

see , sometimes i think i am too reasonable!

Califrau Fri 23-Feb-07 18:00:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Miaou Fri 23-Feb-07 18:02:53

I would insist that he was at the hospital and just outside the delivery room though, if he was adamant he wasn't coming in. That way you can both share in the first few minutes together

I watched one of those birth progs on telly today (I'm ill, that's my excuse ) and there was a partner on there who was a total tool - he sat at the far side of the room with his arms folded for most of the time, then when his partner asked him to hold her hand, he kept whipping it away cos she squeezed too hard , then at one point looked down at the business end and yelled "oh my god, what the hell is that????" sending her into a panic . Total waste of space and worse than useless!!

PurpleLostPrincess Sat 24-Feb-07 13:19:08

Strangely, dh and I had a very similar conversation last night!

He has always been really squeamish and like others mentioned, he will not allow any medical programs on the TV. The thing is, he suffers from mild agoraphobia and really struggles in any situation where there are people he doesn't know. I don't want to force him into anything or have to deal with him having a panic attack while I'm otherwise occupied - it's my moment, not his!!!

Saying that, I know that he cut the umbilical cord for his sister when his nephew was born many years ago, so part of me feels very strongly that he has done it before so he can do it again! I'm thinking I might arrange for my Mum to be there with me but have him wait outside but when it comes to it, I'm hoping he won't be able to tear himself away.

He was told he wouldn't be able to have children so it would be stupid of him to give up witnessing an amazing moment for him, let alone anybody else. I desperately want to share the moment with him and hope he will come around.

He's been really ill lately (depression, anxiety etc.) so I'm not going to push the issue for now.

Hope you manage to work it out - I think it's a work in progress thing!

trixymalixy Sat 24-Feb-07 14:16:20

I had exactly the same thing with my DH and asked pretty much the same thing on here.

my thread

For the record my DH was at the birth and was really glad he was. He said he would have really regretted missing it and would also have never forgiven himself if anything had happened to either of us and he hadn't been there.

He was too squeamish to cut the cord or anything, but coped fine with me being in pain and all the blood etc. I gave birth on mats on the floor and it wasn't until afterwards that he realised he had been kneeling in all the fluids!!

lazyemma Sat 24-Feb-07 14:19:37

Gosh. I know you don't want to push the issue with him, and I can understand why, but I think it's a bit rich, to be honest. It's not like the woman has the luxury of waiting outside whilst someone else gives birth for them. If you want him there, he should butch the fuck up a bit and be there for you. End of story.

lulumama Sat 24-Feb-07 14:28:20

Lazyemma.....i think you cannot force someone to be in the room ...and if you are aware of someone else , even if that someone else is the father, is feeling scared, negative, anxious and would rather be anywhere else but there, it is not going to help

i think a compromise of waiting outside would be a good one......

Saturn74 Sat 24-Feb-07 14:30:28

Handcuff him to the hospital bed!
If you're feeling charitable, choose the 'head end'!

IntergalacticWalrus Sat 24-Feb-07 14:33:42

But then do you want him there if he's just going to panic and get you het up?

There is an interesting article in The Times about this today.

I think the best way to go would be to have an alternative birth partner so you have some suport whaever happens. I think you'll probably find he'll be desperate to be involved when it all kicks off.

DP wasn't keen when I was pg with DS1, but as I had nobody elase to be there when it was all happening, he was with me all the time. I know he's glad he was.

I think part of the key is to get him involved in everything as much as poss, and get him to atten ante natal appointm,ents with you whnever he can. I know a lot of DPs problem was because he felt kind of removed from the whole thing.

Good luck whever you decide

NbgsYellowFeathers Sat 24-Feb-07 14:34:57

Holly, I think you should get a back up. Like lulu says, a doula or maybe a close friend or family member.
You need someone who you know you can rely on and who can make sure all your wishes for the birth are carried through.

My dh is wuss with gory stuff (he wont admit it but he is) and he was there for both of our childrens deliveries.

I think when it came to it, he'd want to be there. I think men come over all protective during labour so he'll want to be there to look after you.

I do agree with what has been said about pushing it though. I have a shocking fear of hospitals and all things health related atm and if someone forced me to go into a hospital it would tip me over the edge.

lazyemma Sat 24-Feb-07 14:40:22

no, I know, lulu, which is why I said I can understand why you wouldn't want to force the issue.

Jamantha Sat 24-Feb-07 14:42:31

My DH has said he'll be there, although he has some qualms about it. But he knows its important to me. I think it's helped that I've said I want him up at the head end. I think he'll be more use to me that way, and he's certainly happier from that viewpoint. I did tell him he can wait outside if he wanted, and that I could ask a friend to come in with me, as I did feel it wasn't fair to make him if he really didn't want to (and it'd be one more thing to worry about) but he's said it'll be OK. Hope you can come to some happy solution that works for you all.

Tortington Sat 24-Feb-07 14:51:08

i'd say "hard shit mate"

lulumama Sat 24-Feb-07 14:51:59

LE-- butch the fuck up made me PMSL though !!

specialmagiclady Sat 24-Feb-07 15:27:08

I have to say I do think that "birthin' is women's time" but that a supportive partner is a complete asset whoever it is.

I think you do need to take him to ante-natal classes as the more he knows about the processes you're going through the less scared he'll be.

But definitely don't force him to be there if he really doesn't want to!

I just asked my DH about whether he saw loads of fluids, blood, poo etc and he can't remember seeing any.

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