Threads

See more results

Topics

Usernames

Mumsnet Logo
Please
or
to access all these features

Get updates on how your baby develops, your body changes, and what you can expect during each week of your pregnancy by signing up to the Mumsnet Pregnancy Newsletters.

Anxious/scared about first birth experience
20

SunflowerLady9 · 12/05/2022 14:52

After our first round of IVF we were lucky enough to fall pregnant, I'm 14 weeks and my pregnancy is consultant led due to it being IVF and my high BMI (over 40). I have my first appointment with the consultant in a couple of weeks and I'm terrified. I'm so worried they will tell me my only option for giving birth is to be in the hospital lying on my back in a bed hooked up to every kind of machine/monitoring device etc possible. This gives me extreme anxiety and I dread the idea of the birth itself. I've always wanted a water birth but know it's highly likely I will be told no.

For anyone with a high BMI, what have your experiences been like? I don't know what to expect. I may be worried for nothing but fear I'm not. We had to go abroad for IVF as couldn't get any treatment with the NHS. I want to be evaluated on an individual, specific to me basis rather than a blanket "oh you have a high BMI, this is the kind of birth experience you get" approach. I have no physical health issues but do have anxiety and struggle with mental health. Edinburgh Royal Infirmary will likely be where I will give birth unless I choose to have a home birth, not completely sure yet. Thank you for any advice or shared experiences! I never thought I would be as scared about birth as I am.

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

Firecat84 · 13/05/2022 10:44

Neverreturntoathread · 12/05/2022 18:49

Ok so I didn’t have high BMI when I gave birth (I do now 😬) and I opted for the whole home birth with water tank thing, but I wanted to pop in and say

  • my labour didn’t progress well in the water tank, it was too darn relaxing for the baby who wouldn’t budge.
  • I had been brainwashed a bit about ‘active birth’ and did lots of moving around and squats etc and after a while of that I was so exhausted that contractions stopped and things got rather dangerous.
  • I would have been so so grateful if anyone had offered me a bed to labour in!! As we were at home and expecting water birth I had no way to waterproof mine 🙈
  • Labour didn’t get moving until I was lying flat on my back which felt wonderful tbh
  • picked up an infection during birth and I blame the flippin water tank.

Not recommending anything in particular but if you do find yourself being advised to lie down in a hospital bed honestly go with it, there’s a lot to be said for it!

Exactly this. Honestly, you don't have much control over how your body deals with labour and we get sold a lot of nonsense about how it will be fine and painless if we make the 'right choices'. I tried all the water birth at home with fairy lights etc but it was awful and I was utterly relieved to get to hospital and have an epidural.

Please
or
to access all these features

Dyra · 13/05/2022 08:52

I've had two inductions. Fortunately for me, I've never wanted a water birth as both the induction and my BMI would have precluded me from having one.

As with other PP you may find you want to be on a bed anyway. I found that with my first. I tried moving around (wireless CTG, so only had the drip to contend with) and different positions, but the best place for me was lying on my right hand side with my gas+air. Lovely vaginal birth. Second time around I was much happier moving around (wireless CTG again) and spent more time out of bed than in it. Culminated in a C-section, but that was down to baby being in an impossible position to birth vaginally, and nothing to do with the induction. Equally lovely birth.

Recovery hasn't been too bad. I was mobile within hours, and only needed painkillers for a couple of days. But my wound.... I'm 9 weeks and 3 courses of antibiotics post partum, and it still hasn't healed. Probably need a 4th course. I put it down to that I already had an overhang/pannus prior to the C-section, which has made it much harder to keep the wound clean and dry.

Please
or
to access all these features

SunflowerLady9 · 12/05/2022 22:40

@Attwoodsladyfriend Thank you! It's really nice to hear positive section experiences 😊

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

RandomName130 · 12/05/2022 22:05

@SunflowerLady9 please try not to stress over it! I was consultant led due to a high BMI, ended up with an induction & gave birth lying flat on my back, hooked up to lots of machines - all things that I’d been terrified of because of the horror stories I’d read 😬 and honestly, I’d do it all again in a heartbeat. I had a really positive experience 😊 so please don’t think that all these things are always negative 😊
Im also in Scotland 😊 happy for you to DM me if you want to hear more about my experience 😊

Please
or
to access all these features

User3568975431146 · 12/05/2022 21:56

Trust your consultant it's what's best for your baby that's the most important thing.

Ps I think giving birth lying on your back, went out with the ark!!!

Please
or
to access all these features

unknownscot · 12/05/2022 21:55

Birth plans should really be renamed to birth preferences!

Please
or
to access all these features

Attwoodsladyfriend · 12/05/2022 21:54

SunflowerLady9 · 12/05/2022 21:41

@Attwoodsladyfriend With your section, how long after did you get to hold baby? Most I've seen on the midwife shows on Youtube (been watching several lately) it seems like mum is the last one to hold baby. It sounds daft but I really want to have the chance to right after they're born. But I have no idea how sections work and whether or not they go through that with you beforehand.

They wrap them up first because the theatre is kept deliberately cold. But probably only about 30 seconds. I held him first, they put him on my chest, as they stitched me up. Then I breast fed him straight away in recovery.

Please
or
to access all these features

waterlego · 12/05/2022 21:48

Can your partner or a friend come to the appointment with you to support you and advocate for you? Just because your anxiety might make you less able to be assertive about your hopes for the birth. (I suffer a fair bit with anxiety and can be really bad at advocating for myself when I’m feeling anxious). At least if you have talked it all through with your partner beforehand then there are two of you to tell the consultant what you would like to happen.

Of course, as you say, there are no guarantees of anything as birth can be an unpredictable business, but there is nothing wrong at all in having a plan and some expectations about how you’d ideally like things to go.

Please
or
to access all these features

SunflowerLady9 · 12/05/2022 21:41

@Attwoodsladyfriend With your section, how long after did you get to hold baby? Most I've seen on the midwife shows on Youtube (been watching several lately) it seems like mum is the last one to hold baby. It sounds daft but I really want to have the chance to right after they're born. But I have no idea how sections work and whether or not they go through that with you beforehand.

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

SunflowerLady9 · 12/05/2022 21:17

Thank you all so much for your replies! To answer one question my ideal birth would be at hospital with the ability to use a birthing pool if I want to, but if anything should happen other options are there as well. I know that birth "plans" can change at the last minute which I'm OK with but do hope I'm given the opportunity to have a say in what happens. I've read about risks involved with induction which scare me, and heard horror stories about c sections and the thought of having one is kind of terrifying. Will need to discuss them more in detail with the consultant I suppose. Part of my anxiety worries they will just tell me things to try and get me to go with what they want but hopefully not. I always worry too I will make the wrong decision about everything and this is kind of a biggie!

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

JemimaTiggywinkle · 12/05/2022 19:31

It’s worth checking, but a lot of labour wards do have birthing pools.

I spent a lot of my labour in the pool in the midwife-led unit at the hospital, which was lovely. But when my waters broke there was merconium (can indicate the baby is under stress) so I had to be transferred to labour ward.

I would personally not have a home birth. When I had to go to labour ward it was just being wheeled down the corridor and into the lift… I wouldn’t want to have to leave my home and go to hospital at that point in labour, it would be very stressful.

So I actually delivered in labour ward. To be honest I was so focused on my own little world that it didn’t matter at all where I was.

Please
or
to access all these features

theotherfossilsister · 12/05/2022 19:25

Hey, we had IVF and are in Edinburgh also. Just gone twenty five weeks and high risk for lots of reasons (lupus, low papp-a.) We're having regular scans and telephone calls with consultant and it's such an anxious time.

I don't think they'll make you do anything you don't feel is ok for you however. How would you choose to give birth ideally all being well?

Please
or
to access all these features

Ringo11 · 12/05/2022 19:17

Being really anxious is tough and being really anxious when you're pregnant can be even tougher. I've been there so I get where you're coming from. I've got severe anxiety, to the point where I was under perinatal support through both my pregnancies. Could you access perinatal support perhaps?

They put a care plan together for me that I took to every appointment so whoever I was seeing, knew my background. That really helped. For instance, my anxiety is driven by health anxiety, so for me, going into hospital to give birth was terrifying. I requested things like, turning the sound off mine/babies heart monitor, as the first time I had it, it made my anxiety/heart rate worse as I was constantly wondering if something was wrong.

My first birth was extremely long and traumatic. I won't go into detail about what happened because I don't think you'll want to read it with anxiety. I wouldn't have wanted to either beforehand!
However, second time around last year was very different. I was consultant led and high risk but I was still able to say what I wanted and didn't want. I actually preferred having midwives there the whole time on high risk. Made me feel more secure with what was happening. Turned out that I was able to give birth to my 9lb dd without any pain relief. Couldn't have been more different to when I had my ds.

So I guess what I'm saying is, try to go with the flow as much as you can. Knowledge is power so be informed. And maybe get any help you can for your anxiety. It can really help.

Please
or
to access all these features

pitterypattery00 · 12/05/2022 18:58

Would totally recommend the book 'practical ways to make your birth better'. It made me feel much more confident and in control. Although it's focused on vaginal delivery/low intervention, it also covers C sections and everything in between.

Please
or
to access all these features

alexdgr8 · 12/05/2022 18:54

if i were you i would just accept the easiest and safest option.
good luck.

Please
or
to access all these features

Neverreturntoathread · 12/05/2022 18:49

Ok so I didn’t have high BMI when I gave birth (I do now 😬) and I opted for the whole home birth with water tank thing, but I wanted to pop in and say

  • my labour didn’t progress well in the water tank, it was too darn relaxing for the baby who wouldn’t budge.
  • I had been brainwashed a bit about ‘active birth’ and did lots of moving around and squats etc and after a while of that I was so exhausted that contractions stopped and things got rather dangerous.
  • I would have been so so grateful if anyone had offered me a bed to labour in!! As we were at home and expecting water birth I had no way to waterproof mine 🙈
  • Labour didn’t get moving until I was lying flat on my back which felt wonderful tbh
  • picked up an infection during birth and I blame the flippin water tank.

Not recommending anything in particular but if you do find yourself being advised to lie down in a hospital bed honestly go with it, there’s a lot to be said for it!

Please
or
to access all these features

WhatNoRaisins · 12/05/2022 18:45

I was consultant led for different reasons and I was always assured that even though I needed to be in hospital it didn't mean I couldn't try for a natural birth in whatever position. There are some monitoring options that still allow for a lot of movement. Its something worth discussing at your appointments later.

Please
or
to access all these features

unknownscot · 12/05/2022 18:42

I'm consultant led due to IVF and another health issue.

My consultant was very open about why they want to induce or section at 38/39 weeks and together we discussed what I would like.

We came up with a plan and honestly the care has been great.

Don't worry, it's your body and they can guide you with informed choice always at the forefront.

X

Please
or
to access all these features

catsnore · 12/05/2022 15:18

I'm 42 and recently gave birth to second baby. I had several risk factors including BMI and was consultant led due to family history of heart defects. I had a lot more scans than in my first pregnancy (at 33) and always seemed to be going to the hospital! I was quite anxious to start with, especially as I had a bleed in early pregnancy. However, the scans and tests all went fine. They wanted to induce me at 39 weeks based on statistical risk. I resisted this as I wanted to go into labour naturally. However, when I went for a check up the day after due date I had developed pre-eclampsia and so accepted being induced. I had planned to have a water birth but actually there wasn't really time in the end, things happened so quickly!

It really is your choice and your body, no-one can make you do it one way or another. The consultants can be a bit bossy and it was extremely busy in my nhs trust so you felt a bit like you were on a conveyor belt! But the midwives are brilliant and will help you with every decision and stage. I know it's hard with anxiety but try to relax and just take it a bit at a time.

Please
or
to access all these features

Attwoodsladyfriend · 12/05/2022 15:13

i have only ever had planned c section and they are where I go to when I need a happy place. Calm, pain free, and so lovely. I was absolutely shitting bricks at the thought of child birth but it can be wonderful. With drugs. Drugs are your friend.

Please
or
to access all these features
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.