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STAGES OF LABOUR - MN NEEDS YOUR EXPERIENCES

(40 Posts)
AbbyMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 16-Sep-08 11:30:39

Am doing some stuff for the site and need some of your wisdom re the different stages of labour:

First stage:
Early phase - that point when you wander around wondering if you're in labour and thinking "this ain't too bad".

Active phase - 3cm to transition - that point when you revise your previous opinion...

Transition - that point when you go from 8 to 10cm and want to go home

Second stage - 10cm - that point where you decide to kill your partner if he tries to rub your back again

Third stage - placenta time

So how was it for you? Don't need loads of information, just your usual short, succinct and pithy remarks.

Cheers all.

MinkyBorage Tue 16-Sep-08 11:45:31

First time round, tens machine for pain relief, not even gas and air:
early phase: Hmmm, think might be in labour, might have a bath, check pubes, ooh, quite painful actually, managable though ............
Transition: oh fuck oh fuck OH FUCK *OH FUCK* I want a water birth, please fill up the bath thingie.OH FUCK......I NEED A CAESARIAN, GET ME AN EPIDURAL, OH FUCK (Thankfully only four hours, no time to fill bath)
Second stage: one push: Oh fuck oh FUCK, there's a baby sticking out of me, either get it out of PUSH IT BACK IN!! Oh FUCK how am I going to get this babay out!!! Second push: Baby out: WOW!! WOW!!!! WOWWWWWWW!!!!!! OhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodoh mygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmy godohmygod
Third stage: placenta delivered naturally, bit weird, but something very gratifying about it slipping out!

Second time: tens plus gas and air
First stage: Start stop labour, very tedious, lasted about 14 hours, had two sweeps, hideous.
TRANSITION: OH FUCK OH FUCK FUCK OFF DON'T TALK TO ME DO SOMETHING USEFUL FUCK OFF OH FUCK
SECOND STAGE: (GAS AND AIR) OH FUCK OH FUCK FUCK OFF FUCK OFF OH FUCK I DON'T GIVE A FUCK, I AM A GODDESS NOW FUCK OFF, JUST FUCK OFF, FUCK FUCK FUCK OFF oNE PUSH: baby out WOW!! WOW!!!! WOWWWWWWW!!!!!! OhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodoh mygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodohmygodOhmygodohmygodohmygodohmy godohmygod
Third stage: no idea, was bombed on gas and air, can't remember.

AbbyMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 16-Sep-08 12:30:31

bump for lunchtime crowd

MamaG Tue 16-Sep-08 12:33:22

First stage:
Early phase - boring, went on for hours and hours, wished I was at home (induced)

Active phase - bloody painful and start to think "I can't do this"

Transition - went a bit bonkers with DS, DH thought i'd fainted, I was shaking and clammy and staring into space. Horrid actually.

Second stage - 10cm - urgent need to get baby out NOW - couldn't tell you where DH had his hands (or even if he was in the room! grin)

Third stage - after pushing DS out - no bother, didn't bother me at all.

nickytwotimes Tue 16-Sep-08 12:37:24

Early stage spent lying on the sofa watching 'Barbarians' with Terry Wotssisface from Monty Python as it was the middle of the night. Fiddling with TENS machine, then throwing it away in disgust. Ate piles of breakfast cereal as I was terrified of being in labour fo rhours, not allowed to eat.
Active stage spent sitting in the loo and feelingn sick. Travelled to hospital, wincing everytime dh went over 30 mph. Demended drugs on arrival. Sucked the hell at Gas and air. Demanded morphine. Had a bad trip.
Transition: bad trip as above.
2nd stage. totally knackerd. COuldn't be botherd pushing but was persuaded to by midwife who threatened intervention. Ds emerged rapidly and I went 'ooooo!' in shock/surprise.
Placenta: didn't want to come out. Mw got colleague who was good with reticent palcentas. Placenta persuaded out.

The mw I had was fantastic. Made the whole experience bearable.

EffiePerine Tue 16-Sep-08 12:38:21

1st stage: fine, went on for about a day after show, not sure if I was in labour or not

active phase: not sure it was a separate stage tbh, got to hosp 5 cm dilated, fine (though with cx getting faster) until needed to push

transition: not sure when this happened either

second stage: not too long (less than an hour) and too panicky to think bad things about my partner!

3rd stage: v quick after baby hoiked out, recovered sufficiently to demand local anaesthetic for stitches (no pain relief other than TENS before then)

Habbibu Tue 16-Sep-08 12:39:26

Um - early phase - got to 3 min between contractions pretty quickly, so not as leisurely and boring as I'd hoped

Active - painful, but used G&A, so was pleasantly drunk for most of it

Transition - stuck at 9cm. Cons said we could wait half an hour "or we could stretch you". We went for the stretch option. Which oddly enough I don't remember at all. Suspect I was G&A'd to the gills.

Active - cons took G&A away and I shouted at him - 2 hours, very painful, but because of this avoided forceps, ventouse, epidural, etc, which was good for me, so in hindsight great - at the time "YOU ARE A MEAN MAN"

Third - no problem - barely remember it. Think it was trick for MW, as cord snapped when dd came out! Was prob on G&A again...

MissusH Tue 16-Sep-08 12:46:25

First stage - wasn't really aware of one (could have been that niggly backache throughout the day?)

Active phase - bloody hell what was that??? I think I've been run over my a truck!! Got the runs (nice) then agonising cramps in my back. Arrived at hospital at 8cm to be congratulated on lasting so long, when in fact had only been having "proper" contractions for 2hrs....
Found out baby was back to back (hence back cramps!!) Pain relief ahoy!!

Transition - uncontrollable shaking, bit of a space cadet, poor DH a bit of a spare part...

Second stage - epidural meant being told when to push, which was weird. Half an hour later DD born. She had "shoulders like a prop forward" (mw's words, not mine) which meant a 2nd degree tear...

Third stage - had the jab, out the placenta came.. Worst bit was numb feet from being in the stirrups too long while tiny Dr put me back together again!!

maxmissie Tue 16-Sep-08 12:47:58

First stage:
Early phase - was during the night so slept at home through the first five hours, then pretty painful very quickly, TENS machine distracted me but didn't dull the pain

Active phase - very painful but went from 4cm to fully dilated in half an hour so very quick, threw up and couldn't give a urine sample! Had G&A which was great!

Transition - see above

Second stage - the worst bit by far, went on for an hour by which time was knackered, rubbish at pushing and very painful and uncomfortable as couldn't have G&A anymore, scary as DD stuck and ended up with legs akimbo and ventouse

Third stage - the easiest bit as it just slipped out without me really noticing

bythepowerofgreyskull Tue 16-Sep-08 20:15:46

first stage

early phase - am I faking it? are these contractions? are we going to have a baby today? lots of Music and DVD's

active phase - Ouch Hmm not ouch, Ouch, Hmm Not ouch more music, dancing and singing to help move baby down and running the water for the pool

Transition - OOOOOOOhhhhhh I am going to do a poo,.... I'm sorry I am going to poo

Second stage - Oooh I can feel a head, It is a head, OOUUCHHHHH

Third stage - a belated contraction then feeling of gloopy mass

Think that about covers it.. had gas and air for the stitches for me they should be mentioned.. I wasn't told how much it would hurt to have a local anaesthetic injection in my nether regions after giving birth shock

phdlife Tue 16-Sep-08 20:25:16

First stage: dh says, "have you noticed your contractions are every 5 minutes?" Me: "No, really?"

Active phase: arrive at hospital an hour later 4cms gone. Try birth pool, hate it. Am persuaded to try gas and air, hate that too. Remember this as being very hard, but not actually painful (dh disagrees).

Second stage: uhnnnnn, uhnnnnn, am I doing this right? uhnnnnn, uhnnnnn, is anything happening yet? I thought it would hurt more. fuck I'm tired...

After two hours the Dr with Giant Concrete hands rummaged around up to the elbow looking for ds - now that feckin hurt!

Third stage: who knows, they give you a hell of a lot of good drugs with an emergency section...

norksinmywaistband Tue 16-Sep-08 20:31:37

First time
1st stage -ok went round to friends for a meal
2nd stage -awful pain manageable but vomited with every contraction for 5 hours, couldn't manage gas and air due to sickness and therefore had epidural at 6 cm
Due to epidural no knowledge of transition
delivery hell as madly asked for epidural to be turned down
forceps delivery damage to baby and massive haemorrage
3rd stage - MR due to retained placenta and bleeding- not at all plesant when awake

second time

1st stage no problems
The elective c-section due to all probs first time
Still haemorraged though

naturalblonde Tue 16-Sep-08 20:31:51

Early phase - wters breaking. and breaking. and breaking. and DH, you HAVE to let me in the car, i know I'm leaking every where, I'll sit on a bin bag.

Active phase - FUCK this hurts. Paracetamol? Yeah that'll sort out my FUCKING HEADACHE. Now what are you gonna give me for the pain that's ripping me apart?

Epidural? Yeah that's gooooooood!!

Transition - Didn't feel it, I love epidurals!!

Second stage - Epi wore off. FUCKFUCKFUCKFUCKFUCKFUCK That hurts.

Third stage - ooh feels funny, yet kinda ok compared to the rest of it.

thisisyesterday Tue 16-Sep-08 20:35:12

First stage:
hmm, is this BH? no, def contractions. or maybe just BH,. oooh no, maybe not. for about 3 hours.

Active phase - ahhhh yes, this is def it. keep walking walking walking and breeeeeeeeeeeeathing.

Transition - I WANT AN EPIDURAL! (pointed out to me that I can't have one as I'm at home)

Second stage - I'm stopping now. it hurts too much, I don't want a baby after all.

Third stage - what placenta?

GeorgeAndTimmy Tue 16-Sep-08 20:50:17

First stage - oh, is this it? Yep, probably. Come on! Painful, but ok.
Active stage - pain increased in intensity - like bad period pains, last few made me need to breathe out throught them - like blowing out a candle.
Never had transition. Did wish the midwife would arrive as a puff of gas and air wouldn't go amiss as the contractions change to being pushing ones.
Second stage - my bum is going to explode! My body is pushing itself inside out. I remember saying 'can I just say - f*ck this hurts' to the midwife who was in the hall after just arriving and then 'can you come in now, the head's crowning'
Third stage - as placenta slipped out - oh, that feels wierd and slippery!

Nice lol!

cmotdibbler Tue 16-Sep-08 20:59:40

First stage - oh good. Maybe they won't have to induce me after all. Will my waters ever stop dribbling down my leg ?

Active - maybe I ought to find a midwife now. Maybe I should call DH now. Oh look its 3 hours since I thought about that... Bugger my back hurts

Don't remember transition

Second stage - mooooooo

Third stage - will anyone ever come back and tell me if my baby is OK. This is worse than pushing the baby out. Bloody hell, how much blood is there ?

BecauseImWorthIt Tue 16-Sep-08 22:08:28

I have no recollection of going through stages with either of my births.

First time, waters broke at 36 1/2 weeks, went into hospital and was kept there, under observation, to let things take their own course or to be induced at 38 weeks, whichever came first.

DS1 decided he was coming at 37 1/2 weeks. Started with period pains at 10.30pm, MW examined me about half an hour later, and then all hell broke loose as I was already 9.5 cm dilated. Pains hadn't really been more than vague period pains/back ache.

Straight up to labour ward. Contractions escalated, controlled (mostly) with gas and air, then told I could push and DS1 born very quickly. Start to finish 3 3/4 hours.

Have no recollection at all of transition.

DS2 was very similar - waters broke at 36 weeks, but went straight into labour. I remember early stage because I was thinking "don't think I can be bothered to do this again" - contractions again controlled with gas and air, and after only a couple of pushes he was born 3 hours after waters broke.

Again, no recollection of transition.

With both, interestingly, have no recollection of placenta being delivered.

Stitches after DS1 but nothing after DS2.

I honestly couldn't say that my labours progressed through stages - they just started and then I had a baby!

evangelina Tue 16-Sep-08 22:15:02

Early phase- not too sure if this is it- send DH off to work at 8.30, phone him at 9 to say definitely is, DH returns home.

Active phase- grit teeth, endure as much as possible, wheelchair at hospital foyer into labour ward, very proud that 8cm dilated without drugs, put in order for epidural.

Transition phase- epidural, machines, pushing, forceps/ventouse/panic followed by lovely baby, what placenta?, people down below doing stitches, breastfeeding and post natal ward.

merryberry Fri 19-Sep-08 21:30:22

ds2:

Early phase - why is this lasting for 19 days?
First phase - from bed to water pool in one seamless move, assume the position, do not deviate from it for 4 hours
Transition - I have cramp in my thigh! Panic! I have cramp!
Second phase - Piles! Just flowered! In sequence! Around my arse!
Third phase - syntometrine, blue light for babe's mild shoulder dystocia, into hospital, long way round. Are we there yet? Very calm and happy mum.

whomovedmychocolate Fri 19-Sep-08 21:33:33

Early phase - ah this is just like period pains, I can do this.

Have never got further than that thanks to my uterus shutting down entirely when within ten feet of a hospital. Hence my babies all come out the catflap (caesarians).

I do the fourth phase: rage at what might have been and hobbling up and down the corridor with blood running down my leg remarkably well though hmm

sweetkitty Fri 19-Sep-08 21:37:23

Will only do it for the last one 9 weeks ago

First stage:
Early phase - DP my waters have just broke 2.50am

Active phase - 10 mins later DP phone MW now, holy shit forgotten how much this fucking hurts, get me gas and air NOW!

Transition - moment of clarity took G&A out mouth opened eyes thought I can feel a baby coming out

Second stage - I NEED to push, MWs go ahead, oh shit first push, head out, second push body follows.

Third stage - physiological third stage so wanted loads of skin on skin time, first feed, cord not to be cut until it had stopped pulsating, no rush for placenta delivery until the afterpains kicked it and holy shit thought I was having another baby. Placenta plops out.

Even first time which was only 4h20m waters to baby I have no defined stages, contractions came thick and fast and bloody painful from the off. Would describe it as being there but my body doing what it needs to regardless of what I am doing (which was screaming)

ChacunaSonGout Fri 19-Sep-08 21:39:15

early phase - virtually non existant for me - once it starts it starts

active phase - sheer hell ( swear and moo)

transition- beg for death( appalling language and moo)

second stage - scream 'get this thing out' whilst still begging for death ( SCREAM and swear apologising occasionally for language)

3rd stage - grab gas and air out of m/w hands and swear a tinsy bit

done it 6 times though!

Ohforfoxsake Fri 19-Sep-08 21:45:51

First stage:
Early phase - for about two weeks prior, every night thinking "this is it" but waking up the next day still PG sad

Active phase - had 5th sweep before going to kids sports day - told I was 6 cms, spent next two hours running between DS1 and DS2s races praying.

Transition - Telling DS1 to get out of the bath "Mummy needs it" on phone to MW saying "I need you NOOOOW"

Second stage - MW out of room chatting to DP, comes back to catch DD complete in her bag smile

Third stage - I don't know, not paying attention.

This was for the birth of my fourth I hasten to add.

MoChan Fri 19-Sep-08 21:47:30

First stage: Pretended not to have had contractions until about three hours after they'd begun. Possibly I was in denial, or it might have been that I wanted DP to take me out for that promised curry (I ate mouthfuls between contractions but then we gave up and went home).

Active phase: Still felt very relaxed and able to handle it, tbh. Combination I think of being in my own home, having mum, dad and DP around me, and fab midwife. Horribly painful, but I felt in control.

Transition: Roll on G&A... mad with pain. Insane.

Second stage: To DP, who threatened to leave the room for five minutes: "You are such an asshole". Not sure why I used the word 'asshole', I'm not American.

Third stage: Awful, felt cold, in shock, placenta took its time coming. Much better once it was out and I got to sit in an armchair with my new baby girl.

TotalChaos Fri 19-Sep-08 21:50:06

Early phase - very brief contractions, 4 minutes apart for 16 hours (involving get sent back home from labour ward as only 2cm)

Active phase - breath taking contractions. ouch.

Transition - please can I have an epi or a section PLEEEEEEEEASE

Second stage - oh god think I'm going to do myself some damage, do I realllly have o push

Third stage - oh that was nice and quick

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