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Talk to Christian Aid about your birth experiences NOW CLOSED

(43 Posts)
AngelieMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 02-Dec-14 11:28:57

For its Christmas appeal this year, Christian Aid is focusing on maternal healthcare projects that provide delivery kits, training and transport, all to help save the lives of mums and babies in Kenya. So, Christian Aid has asked us to find out about Mumsnetters' birth experiences in the UK, and to celebrate the people who helped you through it .

Christian Aid have said "Each year in Kenya 40,000 babies don't survive their first month of life and 14,700 women die from complications during childbirth and pregnancy. In rural areas, losing babies is so common that it’s simply considered a part of life."

So, who were the heroes who supported you when you gave birth? Was there a midwife who went above and beyond to make things smoother for you? A birth partner who really made a difference? What did they do that you particularly appreciated?

Christian Aid would love to hear your experiences and thoughts, so please do share them here.

Thanks,
MNHQ

PS - With Giving Tuesday taking place today, take a look at Christian Aid's video to find out more about their Christmas appeal:

Micah Tue 02-Dec-14 13:18:52

The mw and 2 junior doctors who noticed there was a problem. The team that swung into action- anaesthetists, paediatricians, theatre technicians, resus team, obs/gynae team. The hospital who made all this possible. The NHS who make it free at the point of care.

Without them my DD would definitely not be here, and it's doubtful whether I would be too.

PuzzleRocks Tue 02-Dec-14 13:34:40

Midwives were pretty much absent with both my labours until right at the end. Having my mother there was invaluable and also my sister second time around. It was reassuring to have women present who had been through it themselves and with whom I had a strong bond. They kept me laughing too.

ReallyTired Tue 02-Dec-14 13:35:36

I think Christian Aid is a brilliant charity and I am pleased that they are trying to make sure that women get access to good maternity care.

I had two positive birth experiences. My first child was born in a hospital and the second child was born at home. I had excellent support from community midwives in both pregnancies. Good antenatal care helps to prevent problems happening in the first place. Like Micah I am glad tha the NHS is free at point of care.

Fadingmemory Tue 02-Dec-14 14:12:59

The ambulance man who, seeing me on all fours with a pair of feet emerging (undiagnosed breech), spoke to me with such calm and reassurance. He delivered DD seconds before the flying squad arrived.

MumsyFoxy Tue 02-Dec-14 15:17:12

Are Christian Aid doing more to help women use contraception or are they endorsing and promoting sexual abstinence or no birth control? Are they ostracising women who want to terminate a pregnancy or making them feel like murderers? Are they taking responsibility for the spread of HIV due to the anti-condom stance?

ReallyTired Tue 02-Dec-14 16:12:56

Christian Aid aren't anti family planning.

www.christianaid.org.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/july-2012/christian-aid-welcomes-holistic-family-planning-initiative-1107.aspx

I have no idea of what their stance is on abortion. They got some frequently asked questions here.

learn.christianaid.org.uk/Other/help_4.aspx

MumsyFoxy Shows that many people have no understanding of what Christian Aid is and how they differ form other charities. Christian Aids to eradicate poverty. I don't think that the UK based charity does any mission work. Maybe they should consider a name change because lots of non christians would be sympathetic to their aims.

BlessThisMess Tue 02-Dec-14 16:53:39

Thank you for highlighting this campaign. I've had a mailing from Christian Aid and related to it very much with its stories of women who felt unsure whether their baby would live. In my case it was because my first baby was diagnosed with a major heart defect antenatally and I spent the rest of that pregnancy not knowing if I would bring my baby home from the hospital or not. The amazing care of the specialist doctors and the midwives at the birth meant that I did get to hold him and cuddle him, and then incredibly intricate heart surgery meant he did come home with us, albeit only for too short a time as he died a few weeks later.

After that, you never take pregnancy and birth for granted again and each subsequent pregnancy was full of anxiety and worries about whether there would be a live baby at the end of it. I now have two healthy daughters but even years later I still feel pangs of fear when someone announces a pregnancy, and can only hope and pray that their excitement and innocence are not ripped away like mine was.

Thank you, Christian Aid, for campaigning to make a difference, and you can count on my contribution to your fund-raising this Christmas.

Stillstarving Tue 02-Dec-14 22:46:08

4 c-sections here and no certainty that I or my children would still be here otherwise - particularly the last one! We were so close to disaster. I'm so grateful for the NHS, my 3 older children would be motherless without it. I get a bit cross about militant birth is not a medical procedure types. It's easy to say that when you've got a safety net. Anyway I thought my gratitude should be practical and for each new birth in my circle I think it's good to donate to those having children in countries where there is no safety net. I keep a bit quiet about it, don't tell the new parents! I think it seems a bit worthy but it's my way of trying to balance the world a bit so yes work away Christian Aid you have my support

unclerory Tue 02-Dec-14 22:58:09

DS was born 4 weeks early after my waters broke. He had a dramatic birth, I was induced and then 2 hours later his heartbeat started to drop so I was whisked through to theatre for an EMCS. The MW (as I was being pushed through) started putting into place plans for me to BF him asap which I thought was amazing. By the time I got to theatre the consultant realised that I was pushing (I'd been 5cm when she examined me 5 minutes earlier in the delivery room) and so she changed plans from an EMCS to a forceps delivery. Fortunately he was born too quick for that to happen and was the first normal delivery one of the theatre staff had ever seen! After he was born and I was back in the delivery suite the MW was fantastic with her BFing support, the member of staff who had never seen a normal birth came to chat and say how amazing I was, and then the consultant came to tell me how amazing I was as well. They all had been fantastic and really looked after me and cared about my experience and made me feel so special after what could have been quite a scary birth.

We were in hospital for a couple of weeks after DS was born and the MWs I spoke to then were so lovely and made sure I was feeling OK because (quite rightly) the paediatricians were very concentrated on how DS was doing.

We are so lucky to have the NHS in this country.

Nunyabiz Wed 03-Dec-14 08:05:33

Sadly I can't remember the name of my midwife with DD1. It was April 21st 2011 at St Mary's Paddington birthing unit. She is a Kiwi lady who delivered my daughter. She might remember us. 10lb 4oz attempted water birth into McRoberts. PPH, retained placenta etc. if you are reading this, you were so kind and so comforting in a time of uncertainty. It has taken me a long time to understand that birth. I now have DD2 who was born very quickly without complications. I feel so blessed to have 2 beautiful healthy little girls. I am always in awe of those who go down the path of midwifery. It's an incredible thing you are giving in what is, i believe the most important time of a woman's life. You are literally what stands between life and death sometimes and you do an amazing job. Thank you x

SomethingFunny Wed 03-Dec-14 13:00:45

My thanks go to my husband, who (despite normally fainting at the near mention of blood) stood at the business end cheering me on like he was watching a horse race. His encouragement was brilliant and helped me keep going, despite my back to back baby and an epidural.

Christian Aid are a brilliant charity - I am a regular supporter. I hope your Christmas Appeal goes really well, it is a truly worthwhile cause.

JazzAnnNonMouse Wed 03-Dec-14 19:40:30

Midwives were kind and gave me drugs!! I also had lots of encouragement and care from my dh.

I would like to know about the 'Christian' part of Christian aid - how does that impact the work you do?

Efferlunt Wed 03-Dec-14 21:46:44

I had a massive unexpected post partum haemorrhage with #2. I would be dead without the two amazing midwifes and entire crash team that appeared seconds later I can't imagine how risky it must be to give birth without proper support and help.

BlueEyeshadow Wed 03-Dec-14 23:04:55

DS1 was a footling breech, and then tiny, wouldn't feed, loads of other stuff. I don't know if either of us would have made it without the wonderful CS team and then the midwives, paeds etc. And also our lovely HV who went above and beyond to keep us sane in the mad weeks afterwards.

DS2 was much more straightforward, but still can't thank the wonderful midwife and NHS enough.

ViperActive Thu 04-Dec-14 08:11:43

I had a positive experience. I was grateful for the midwife who was with me for her whole shift (9-5 or thereabouts) and was never out of the room for more than 10 mins so she didn't have any long breaks or lunch. My DP who is usually an anxiety sufferer, morphed into the biggest support and my rock.
Modern day advances played a big part too so I am thankful for the NHS

icklekid Fri 05-Dec-14 04:11:27

jazz maybe read this www.christianaid.org.uk/aboutus/who/aims/our_aims.aspx Christian aid values and aims- they are a charity run by Christians but as is mentioned above in the thread certainly do not promote anti abortion or birth control views if those are your concerns. They are passionate about fighting injustice and poverty run by Christians- similar to many food banks. .

LordJabuJabu Fri 05-Dec-14 09:08:48

Every single midwife or doctor I've had to see during delivery.

It's a shame that it's counted as a privilege & not just a given but I felt respected, cared for & valued during each of my 3 NHS labours (the last was 3 days ago)!

My husband was wonderful during them, happy to take all the abuse, scratches & bites.

Tired10years Fri 05-Dec-14 10:19:51

Two great home births. Two great midwives (4 in total). My second was 8 days late. MW totally understood I didn't want to be induced and poked dd in the head a couple of times until she came out. MW's were totally supportive of first time births at home and one came out on her day off to deliver dd. Couldn't have asked for more. Thank you Bucks community midwives. thanks

Daariina Sat 06-Dec-14 16:41:20

It was my sister who supported me through my first few pregnancies. At that time I was living in my home country and things were pretty tough, so the first 2 pregnancies were home deliveries. My mum never cared much for me so wasn't there at all, however my sister (even though younger) helped with everything.

BeyondTheTreelights Tue 09-Dec-14 17:39:40

I was best on my own. I reckon i'd be one of those women who could give birth in a field with no medical assistance, which is very contradictory to my disability and general health!! I realise that probably sounds stupid blush

The problems in my first labour were caused by the stupid midwife. Dh and my mum were there but didnt really add anything exactly.

In my second, dh was there and a midwife was watching, but mentally i did it by myself, they were just on hand.

kamikami Wed 10-Dec-14 12:31:39

My midwives Pamela and Elaine was amazing! I had planned to have a home birth but didn't go into labour until 40+13. My midwives knew how important it was for me to stay at home so supported my choice when most midwives would have tried to induce me.

Unfortunately I had to deliver at hospital (meconium when my waters broke at home) but Elaine stayed with me throughout the delivery, visited me the following day despite only having a couple of hours sleep, and then came to my house after work a few days later to teach me how to breastfeed as I was really struggling. She really gave so much to me and all my friends under her care.

Unfortunately the home birth team no longer exists in Newham but I would definitely consider a home birth again if there was consistent care.

BadlyWrittenPoem Wed 10-Dec-14 12:50:53

My doula was a brilliant support for me when the midwoves were unhelpful. I am so thankful she was there!

StarsInTheNightSky Wed 10-Dec-14 14:38:22

Our consultant was absolutely amazing throughout my whole pregnancy and c-section. I had a very high risk pregnancy, most of which was spent in hospital and the consultant was an absolute pillar of support to my husband and I, we were both terrified as sadly it wasn't our first pregnancy but has gone on to be our only living child.
Also the anaesthetist for my c-section, I had an emergency c-section as our son decided to try and arrive five weeks early and there was a lot of uncertainty over whether he'd survive birth due to other complications. When the anesthetist saw me mouthing the words to the Lord's prayer as they were quickly prepping me for theatre, he offered to pray for our son too (he was a Muslim). I gratefully accepted and hearing his low chanting really helped to keep me calm. Ten minutes later our son was born perfectly fine with no problems at all, which the consultant said was a miracle.
The anaesthetist kept coming to check on my son, my husband and I on his breaks whilst we were in hospital ands used to sit and talk to us and make us laugh with stories of his childhood in India, he truly was the most dedicated caring man you could meet.

Keepcalmanddrinkmulledwine Wed 10-Dec-14 21:54:53

We are so lucky to have good, freely available maternity care in this country. Both of my births were pretty much complication free really, but in a different situation, the eldest needing to be helped along with a ventouse delivery and me needing several stitches afterwards may not have been as routine as it was. The aftercare was excellent too.

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