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To tell family you're in labour or not... what did you do?!
108

MotherofKitties · 10/07/2017 04:06

Hi all,

I'm 37 weeks and pondering on whether to tell parents if and when I'm in labour or just wait until the baby is born, and I'm keen to get others opinions/experiences on what you did/are planning to do!

One set of parents live abroad and the other two sets live a good 3+ hours away, so if we did tell them we would have at least 3 hours before they could get to us. All sets are very keen and have specifically requested that they be told when Ive gone into labour, but I'm not sure I'd be happy saying anything to anyone until I've given birth.

My overriding thought is not to tell them with my reasons being, 1. Labour can go on for days and I don't want my husband and I bombarded with messages/texts/calls when our focus should be on delivering our baby, 2. Unless we end up being in hospital for several days I won't want any visitors in hospital 3. When baby is born I want at least a few hours of just 'us' family time, especially with 4. An hour or two back at home just the three of us before we start having family arrive and visit to us a little bit of time to adjust.

These to me are all very good reasons why not to tell our parents until our baby is actually born, and whilst I am more than happy to tell any potential disgruntled grandparent "I didn't want anyone to know until she was born and that's why we didn't tell you I was in labour", my husband thinks we should tell family but just tell them to keep away until we say it's ok to visit.

What did you do/are planning to do? If you didn't tell family, was anyone really disgruntled or put out you didn't tell them you were in labour or was it not an issue? Did anyone tell their family pre-birth and did you have any issues with people constantly trying to contact you/visit before you were ready? Any thoughts would be appreciated!

Xx

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glitterglitters · 10/07/2017 05:00

Hi, we told nobody except FIL twice, first as he dog sat and second babysat. We pretended it happened too quickly and intensely for us to call prior and allowed a pressure free birth. No imminent arrivals or losing out on that early time between you three x

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PolkaDotFlamingo · 10/07/2017 05:21

I didn't tell anyone but then it took a very long time so they had worked it out anyway as we'd both stopped talking to anyone. My DH sent a few reassurance texts without me knowing as he was worried that my mum and sister would be worried. It was the right thing to do as they were. I didn't care, it didn't even cross my mind at the time and didn't see my phone for 3 days.

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UsedToBeAPaxmanFan · 10/07/2017 05:32

My ds was born 20 years ago so I didn't have a mobile, there was no expecration of texts or daily contact.

I knew 2 days before his birth that I was going to be induced. Dh and I didn't tell anyone. I rang my mum a few hours after he was born to tell her. My pants visited me in hospital the next day, that was fine.

With ds2 it was a planned c/s and I did tell my parents . But mum worked as a head teacher so couldn't get any time off, and lived too far away to visit in the evening.

You need to do whatever feels right for you.
Don't be pressurised into feeling you need to give information you don't want to give. .

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chelle85 · 10/07/2017 07:56

I don't intend to tell anyone until he has arrived. My SIL gave birth in Feb and the in laws were in the waiting room the entire time she was at the hospital and werre in to see the baby within 20 mins of him being born. I have no intention of having thay happen!

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Tobuyornot99 · 10/07/2017 08:03

My DP called his and my Mam when I was in labour, they BOTH ended up in the labour room for the last 90 minutes or so, and I had an audience as I delivered. It didn't really bother me, but most people I've told have been horrified at the thought. If you do tell them then be prepared for spectators!

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MyOtherProfile · 10/07/2017 08:05

Told nobody until near the end or my DM would have been banging on the door wanting to come in!

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Bunlicker · 10/07/2017 08:07

I can't think why you would tell them tbh.

It's not up to your dh at all. He gets no say on anything baby related until there is a baby.

He may not think it's fair but I'm sure he was happy with not giving up alcohol or cheese Wink

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Oysterbabe · 10/07/2017 08:07

We told them because we trusted them to stay away until we wanted visitors. If you can't trust them to do that then don't tell them.

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BendingSpoons · 10/07/2017 08:11

We weren't going to tel people but decided to tell parents when we went to the hospital, as we wanted them to know. Baby was born 2.5 hours later so worked fine for us. My parents then visited 8 hours later, PIL were abroad. We knew neither would just turn up. They had been stalking us on last viewed on What's App anyway.

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FrencheoGrammaireo · 10/07/2017 08:11

I didn't tell anybody. For DC1 the labour was long (which wasn't actually a problem for me). If I knew grandparents yo be or anybody else was or could be checking up on things with DH then it would have added a kind of subconscious pressure. That wouldn't have helped!

You're under no obligation to tell anybody you're in labour.

You're not even under any obligation to tell them the real due date (for next time!).

The only thing you should do is whatever you want and whatever makes you more comfortable and happy. This is your time, they've had theirs. You never get this time back so don't set yourself up with the possibility of having regrets.

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CatRash · 10/07/2017 08:11

I don't plan on telling anyone if I can help it! The only issue is the cat - unfortunately it's not like we can just fill his bowl up with dry food to see him through because he would eat it all immediately. Something I'll worry about when it happens!!

We live in the same village as my parents and also PILs so (unfortunately) they could get to the hospital as quickly as us. Also if they had any suspicions they could just drive past our house to see what cars are there.

My parents won't be any issue as they know me well enough to know where to draw the line and there's no way they'd turn up to the hospital or even the house uninvited.

I'm not sure PILs will be quite the same though. Time will tell.

I'm 37+4

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beekeeper17 · 10/07/2017 08:13

I didn't really decide what I'd do in advance but when it happened and I got to the hospital I was actually very far along so I decided I wanted to tell my mum as things were going to be happening soon! Then it just felt right that DH should let his mum know too. Both sets of parents were far enough away though that they wouldn't have been arriving at the hospital or anything, not that they would have done that until we had said it was ok.

I might not have told them so quickly if things were going slowly, to avoid feeling the need to keep them updated.

You can always do what I did, and just decide what to do when the time comes, I think I just felt so excited that things were happening that I wanted my parents to know so they could sort of be involved in some way too.

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Rufustherenegadereindeer1 · 10/07/2017 08:15

I had to tell my mum because otherwise i was being persuaded to go to the neighbors drinks party Shock

Unless its an outright emergency like the above i would go with leaving it until the baby arrives

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LotisBlue · 10/07/2017 08:21

No way, my parents (and pil) are lovely but I knew they would all worry, and bombard us with well meaning texts and calls. We told them after the baby was born!

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BrioLover · 10/07/2017 08:22

DH texted MIL and my dad when we got to the hospital and were settled in the labour ward. He wouldn't have let them know if I'd not had an epidural though as his focus would have been on me, not anyone else!

I was glad he did tell them when he did because my dad booked a couple of days off work so he could pop in and out and make tea/bring food, and MIL used her spare key to let herself into our flat and cleaned it top to bottom (then went home and waited till she was asked to visit!). They both came to the hospital the next day. Not to everyone's liking but I knew that they would be respectful visitors (I didn't lift a finger for the first month) and was very grateful.

If you think they won't be respectful of your wishes then it is probably best not to let them know until baby is born. If your DH is insistent you might want to ask him to push a melon out of his arse whilst people wait excitedly Grin

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happilyeverafta · 10/07/2017 08:22

We didn't want to tell anyone, I was booked in for an induction and wanted it to be a special time just us 3.

However my brother decided to pay us an unexpected visit on the morning we were due in, with my mom so had to usher them out and tell them. Both were very excited and kept it secret for us!

PIL - there was no way we were telling them because mil would of been at the hospital quicker than us begging in her winey voice to be let in...Hmm

When we had our DD we called them and told them all. Mil didn't congratulate us just said 'when can I see her?'

Do what's right for YOU!

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DuggeeHugs · 10/07/2017 08:23

We didn't want to tell anyone first time, but I ended up in for 8 days with a failed induction and EMCS. We did have one set of very excited relatives visit and, although it was manageable thanks to being the only person in the bay at the time, in reality I felt vulnerable still so will be asking visitors to hold off until we're home this time.

Parents and ILs all know the ELCS date now but DH has been great at fending off MIL who wants to express her 'concern'. I get on with MIL but this is one occasion where I'm not prepared to take on her issues - I need to focus on the new baby and making sure DS1 feels comfortable with this big change in his life.

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Okite · 10/07/2017 08:25

God no, not unless they are babysitting for another child! My DH mentioned to his mum I was feeling a bit funny late in one pregnancy and I was bombarded with texts for the next 24 hours asking how it was going! I wasn't even in labour! Fortunately all mine were overnight home births so we just told people in the morning afterwards, apart from the people on standby for babysitting in case we needed to go to hospital.

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rightwhine · 10/07/2017 08:29

I wanted mine to share in some of the excitement. It seems a bit cruel not to tell them. Depends on if you get on with them though.

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FluffyEwok · 10/07/2017 10:26

We've lied about due date and pushed it back 10 days ! The only issue is we have a big dog that needs to be looked after. However we live 5 mins from the hospital so hopefully dh can nip back is we get some down time. We also have a dog walker that will help us x

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snoopypoodle · 10/07/2017 10:53

Didn't really want to let anyone know and luckily didn't have to as labour started v early hours (4am) of the morning and DS was born at 8 so it was all very fast.

Will be tougher next time around as we need a babysitter for DS and DDog so need to figure something out ...

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Highmaintenancefemalestuff · 10/07/2017 11:00

The first time only dh and my mum knew as they would both be at the birth. I sat through a family meal then a Halloween party gritting my teeth in absolute agony.
The second time the ILS knew as they were going to be looking after ds.
I think it was a lovely surprise to everyone who woke up to the news and it also meant I could labour and give birth without people ringing and messaging.

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LemonBreeland · 10/07/2017 11:09

I wouldn't tell people as they then start looking for updates, as other porters have already said. They will then get worried if they don't receive the updates.

My Mum asked us to call her when I went into labour with my first. I nodded and smiled but never had any intention of calling her. As it was I had a very quick labour anyway, so didn't really have time. My IL's knew as I was at their house when I went into labour. Poor FIl was beside himself with worry, probably because my IL's sadly lost two babies at birth. It is easier to just tell people afterwards, particularly if you want some peace, as they will be too excited to listen to being told to stay away.

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TestTubeTeen · 10/07/2017 11:11

We didn't tell anyone. I had strong instincts for privacy during labour, and that extended to not wanting a 'virtual gallery' of people expecting updates and sending texts. It just felt intrusive.

Labour is not a spectator sport, even long-distance.

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pippanippa · 10/07/2017 12:10

Our parents were abroad, I went into labour in the middle of the night. We didn't want to wake them and keep them up all night worrying when things could take forever (we also didn't want to be bombarded with messages for updates), so my DH sent them a message first thing in the morning. By then we were happily set up in hospital and things were progressing well. We knew baby would definitely be born sometime that day. They were very good and didn't pester us once, and we let them know once baby had arrived so I think it worked well for everyone, they weren't upset at all that we waited a little while to tell them.

I also wanted to be left alone in hospital and the first week or so at home. As it happened my mum arranged to come over just for a few hours a couple of days after my DD was born as a surprise. My DD was in neonatal care and I have never been more happy to see anyone in my life, sometimes, there's nothing like your mums hug to make everything better. That's not to say you'll feel the same of course, but just to say try not to worry too much about it, things will work out either way.

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