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Don't know whether to ask for an elective c/s or not. (Long)

(6 Posts)

I'm really scared about having my next baby. It's ages off yet but I'm trying to get my head around what to do so that I don't dread it for the rest of the pregnancy. If you get de ja vu it's because I've written about it once or twice before.

Last time I was considered high risk because I was/am very overweight. Throughout the pregancy I was treated like a liability. They kept on doing tests and running growth scans, and even though ALL the results came back normal for everything, they would still schedule more scans, more tests, as if they'd come back with bad results. I was told I'd probably need a section even though there was no apparent reason for it apart from my bmi, and in the end my body did the job perfectly well.

I went into labour at 40+5, coped well until I got into hospital at 4cm, and they made me lie on my back, then the pain got instantly worse. They insisted on fitting an internal monitor and an IV. It progressed normally and I had him about 4-5 hours after going in, short pushing stage and 2nd degree tear because the midwives panicked me saying I had to get him out right now (but he had apgar scores of 9?)

Anyway it all sounds normal and great on paper but I found it really traumatic and I was so frightened and disoriented with the massively intense pain I couldn't ask for pain relief (forgot there was pain relief, or anything other than lying on that bed sucking on the G&A for dear life - I forgot why I was there, or that it would ever end)

Afterwards I didn't want to look at my baby for 5 or 10 minutes because I was so in shock, and I was shaking for ages. I kept having flashbacks and nightmares for a while, and I said I'd never do it again. And now I'm doing it again. hmm

This time, I just don't know what to do. I'm so scared of experiencing that pain and loss of control again I feel like requesting an elective c/s just to have some measure of control. Plus I'll almost definitely tear again (always had a weak perineum) and my bladder hasn't been great since the last birth so that might be aggravted by a normal birth too. WWYD? Would it be simpler all round to get an elective?

I hate the thought of surgery, and I know I'd run a higher risk of infections etc. But it just feels like I won't have the birth choices my peers do, whatever happens I'm going to be in a brightly lit room with loads of people, me flat on my back being treated like a labouring hippo and people speaking about me not TO me. The difference is whether I'm in pain or not.

ChocOrange05 Wed 23-Sep-09 13:52:26

James it sounds like you didn't have a very good experience of the birth which is really sad as although it is rather painful (for rather read bloody!) I didn't come away with a scared feeling of doing it again.

Did you make a birth plan last time, I know I felt completely out of control when in labour as it was very painful but my husband and my midwife knew my birth plan and I was confident and comfortable that they were trying to go by that - even reminding me that I wanted to be walking about rather than lying down (when I was lying down) only to be faced with not a very nice F*&^ off!! grin

Have you thought about hiring an independent midwife - I don't know how much they cost, almost to have someone who knows exactly what you want and can be supportive to voice your wants when you are in labour? Could your husband/partner do this? Alternatively a homebirth might make you feel more in control being in your own environment? I know you said about the weight issue but if you have had one relatively simple birth there might be an argument for a HB?

I have never had a c-section so I can't advise about that (although I distinctly remember for screaming for one at somepoint during my labour!) but I'm not sure how much more control you would have and feel by having a caesarean.


countrybump Wed 23-Sep-09 13:55:10

To be honest I have no idea what your options will be, but I think it would be good for you to have a discussion with your midwife as soon as possible, and tell her exactly how you feel. Hopefully she will be sympathetic and you can work through your options and help you to feel more in control this time round.

Hope it goes well for you.

olphi Wed 23-Sep-09 14:24:48


So sorry to hear about your experience. I had a section because my ds was distressed - tbh, I would much rather go through 4 hours of pain and even humiliation. Sections don't give you much control either, if anything from someone creating a new life you are downgraded to a slab of meat, really. And it's not exactly painless either - it's true that on the day you don't feel a thing, but afterwards it takes about 6 weeks to recover, and most women have some discomfort for about 6 months. According to some research, about 10% end up with chronic pains due to adheasions.

May be the solution is to find a good midwife/doula? Or just explain to your parner that you will need more encouragement and support? I really hope it goes much better for you this time round.

TruthSweet Wed 23-Sep-09 14:44:28

You don't say what your BMI is/was but mine is 34 (booking in BMI) am same weight now at 37 weeks as pre-pg.

I have had 1 hideous 4 day induction (for epilepsy hmm) and 1 homebirth and am planning a homebirth if I go to 38 weeks or over.

You don't have to have any intervention you don't want. I learnt the hard way that Drs sometimes don't always do things for the patient's benefit but rather to make their own life easier (read: Cover your arse). It sounds like as soon as you booked in the Drs/MWs swung into action believing you were an obstetric disaster waiting to happen based purely on your BMI.

Is there another hospital that you can recieve care from? Or decline the extra tests/scans if the first ones come back normal? They can make appts for you but you don't have to show up (obviously cancel before - don't want to waste NHS money grin)

I can speak from experience of my drug free (apart from 3 mins of g&a) homebirth that the only contraction that was painful was the one I had on my back whilst telling the MW not to do a VE as I was contracting shock so how you managed all that time flat on your back with just g&a well my hat's off to you. No way would I have managed it.

The rest of my labour wasn't even as painful as some of my bad periods (which admittedly were really bad). DD2 was born in 4 mins after a really easy 25 hour labour (eat, slept, watch TV, bounced on birth ball, etc). I am really hoping for a similar experience this time grin.

Doin't be put off from labouring by the paranoia of the Drs. Try this site for information on plus size pregnancies. It's American but obviously American physiology isn't any different from British physiology.

Rubyshoos Wed 23-Sep-09 15:36:31

Poor you James.

I had a c-section with my nearly 2 year old DS and I'm pregnant again and considering my options. My son was breech hence I had no choice for the c-section but this time round I am really going to try hard to have a normal birth as whilst a c-section is not painful during the actual process, it's the days/weeks after that are hard. I just about managed to look after a newborn and look after myself post c-section but am worrying already how I'm going to look after a very engergetic two year old, a newborn and everything else in my busy life whilst nursing a c-section scar. For that reason alone, I'm going to pray that I have a normal birth and seeing as you also have a little person in your life who will need running around after - think really hard before you decide on the c-section. Just plan your delivery as much as you can and make sure that epidural is on offer! Good Luck!

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