Monday Musing ~ Hospital Birth… I am So OVER it!

Monday Musings… Back at the beginning of February I thought it sounded catchy and I decided to start this segment on my blog.  It was intended to be a place for me to rant about something that happened in my world, in my life during the previous week/weekend.  It sounded like a good idea initially.  However… as you can see… not just from a Monday Musing stand point, but from all points in general as it relates to this blog, I have been completely M. I. A.  I have just been buried beneath life. I am sure some of you can relate. I do remain committed to my blog, and to be quite honest, while sometimes it seems like WORK, I have come to enjoy it.  And when I am away from my blog for long periods of time, I miss it.  This has been one of those times and I decided to dive back in with a Monday Musing today!

While this “Monday Musing” is not a reflection of what transpired specifically over the past week/weekend, it is a little glimpse of what work has been like for me over the past couple of months and basically… the bottom line is….

I am soooo OVER IT!!!

I am over doctors believing that they always know what’s best without ever consulting the woman(en) they are taking “care” of AND… I am over the nurses who think this is okay and are far too lazy and/or complacent to educate their patients to make informed decisions.

I am over doctors who think it’s perfectly okay to perform episiotomies and operative deliveries with forceps and vacuums without asking or even mentioning it to the patient even when it’s NOT an emergency.

I am over doctors telling a woman “You might need a c/section” BEFORE she is even in labor and convinces her to get induced for her “big” baby that weighs SEVEN pounds.

I am over doctors saying “Well we should just go ahead and admit her since she is here and she is 39 weeks. Give her cytotec and start Pitocin in the morning” THIS… for a woman pregnant for the first time who came in to be evaluated with few mild contractions who was 1cm dilated, not effaced with a healthy baby.  AND may I add… a woman who wanted to go home and lives a few blocks from the hospital.

I am over doctors telling me “Well if she doesn’t want XYZ tell her she can’t have any pain medicine” WTF!!!!….  I did have a great come back once however when I was able to say “Actually doctor she is not feeling any pain” That made me smile cause he didn’t know what to say next!! LOL

I am over nurses who think just because a woman does not speak fluent English that she does not deserve adequate explanations… Get an interpreter for goodness sakes!!

I am over family members thinking that giving birth is a spectator sport. It’s NOT and if you are not helping and she does not want or need you GO HOME!! And be clear just because she does not tell you to go home it does not mean she wants you there. She told ME she wants you to leave but she doesn’t want you to be mad. Take a clue. She is either 1. In pain or 2. Trying to rest. GO HOME.  Come back tomorrow. Or better yet… visit her once she goes home with the new baby and bring along a cooked meal! 😀

I am over individuals who think “skin to skin” means swaddling the baby and putting the baby onto mom’s chest. Its SKIN to SKIN people…. NOT baby blanket to SKIN… geesh LMAO!

I am over people screaming and counting and telling my patient when and how to push when she doesn’t even have an epidural!!! Trust me… her body KNOWS when and how to push.  And even when there is a dense epidural in place there is still no need to scream and count. She can hear people!!! AND for the record… counting does NOT make the baby come faster.

And at the risk of stepping on a few toes… I am over women who ask me a MILLION questions once they are in the hospital and when I ask “What did your doctor tell you?” the response is “I never asked him… OR…   He doesn’t really give me a chance to ask questions… OR…  I don’t really like him…. Etc… ”  Now let me be clear here. I love to educate women. And I LOVE to help them make informed choices. And I LOVE working with women in labor.  However… if you make a decision to stay with a doctor for 8 months… a doctor that you don’t like… a doctor that does not talk to you or look you in the eye… a doctor that does not know your name… there is not much I can do, as your labor and delivery nurse, when you arrive to the hospital with admission and induction orders. Sure I have tried to say… “Your baby is fine, you are only 39 weeks. BEFORE I place this cytotec you can change your mind and go home” ( And trust me I have REALLY told women this. Even mid induction with Pitocin that is not working I have educated women on their right to leave the hospital and try again the next day or wait for spontaneous labor) The reality is… it never works because at this point you have already started rolling down the hill.

Sooooo I say this… and I beg of you…  Ladies, gentlemen, women, men, daughters, sisters, fathers, mothers, brothers… you have NINE months to do your homework. This is IMPORTANT!!  You HAVE to do YOUR part. Don’t be like a recent father I worked with who said to me in the labor room during my admission education… “WOW! I didn’t think there was so much that went into having a baby!” I smiled supportively and said “Yes… there is a lot, a whole lot” INSIDE… I was more like “WHAT!! What the hell did you think, we were simply baking a box cake. It’s a HUMAN life for Christ’s Sake! Geesh!!”

PLEASE….  read, and learn, and ask questions, and be informed. Don’t take the first answer, ask another question and if you feel uncomfortable find another provider. Waiting until your hospital admission is too LATE!!!

And so moving on… I must admit… I am SOOOO  OVER all of it right now…

I am OVER hospital birth.
I am OVER inductions.
I am OVER 5PM C/sections.
I am OVER continuous monitoring.
I am OVER lithotomy position.
I am OVER women being NPO (restricted from eating/drinking) in labor.
I am OVER women being stuck in bed.
I am OVER the lack of midwives in my community.
I am OVER the inability for families to have a mother/baby friendly experience.
I am OVER women feeling like they have been “saved” when the only danger in the first place is the “savior.”
I am OVER hospital birth.

Yes my friends… I am over it!! All of it!! Every piece of it!!!
And so with that I ask.… what are YOU over??

In Birth and Love
Nicole

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29 responses to “Monday Musing ~ Hospital Birth… I am So OVER it!

  1. Had to share with my fellow L&D nurses. I’m not the only one who is over it!

  2. I wholeheartedly agree….. I am so over the fact that I cant find an OB who will allow me VBA2c, since i’m having twins something so exciting has become something so detrimental to me. I am the end of the line. I starting to hate being in NY

  3. I Love this post. I agree with you 100 percent. I took a deep breathe after reading this, as I’ve wanted to express similiar points and you did it for me 🙂

  4. Awesome post!! I couldn’t agree with you more. We had our first two at home and the third in a hospital due to complications in the pregnancy and it was hard to stand up for what we knew was right in the face of everyone telling us otherwise. Thankfully we were educated and we ended up with a very nice hospital birth. My heart goes out to all those that don’t know any better–I can’t even imagine what the outcome of my first two labors would have been if I had been in a hospital and uneducated. Awesome post!

  5. AMEN!!!!! My first pregnancy/delivery/eventual c-section went pretty much like this. Now, almost 7 years later with my second, I am SOOOOOO much more educated. I’ve done tons of reading and research and my labor and delivery this time around will be different because I know way more about how the body works and how delivery *SHOULD* (and has for thousands of years) work.

    • THANKS so much for reading my blog and for your comment. So many comments including yours confirm what I was feeling and unfortunately feel often at work. Thankfully we are educating each other and moving forward to help women have more enjoyable experiences!

  6. Awesome!!!Awesome!!!Awesome!!! I love this post. I feel like this all of the time as a mom and a childbirth educator. Thank you for posting.

    • I am happy to read and enjoyed my post. Thanks for reading. The only sad part is that soooo many out there have been able to relate to the frustration I was feeling when I wrote this post. I pray one day we won’t have to feel this way because change is coming! 😀

  7. also, what is funny about our society, is that we are SO brainwashed that most people honestly don’t KNOW that they aren’t educated. they actually think that all they need to know is what the doctor tells them. it usually isn’t until someone has a terrible experience that they start to question things, but sometimes even then they don’t realize that there is actually any other choice, because again, the are relying on someone else for their information. on my part, having the 2 cs after my first c was total and complete ignorance, and I was so young and didn’t know anything about anything. now I know better. when you say, people need to be educating themselves I completely agree, but I would like to put out there that most of these people honestly don’t know that there IS an education to be had. completely oblivious because that is just what their moms did, and their moms and beyond, and it doesn’t cross their minds that they SHOULD do it another way. we have put our freedom into other people hands in the pursuit of happiness, and now we are paying the price for it with our health. I am SO over this blanket that the medical community had put over our eyes to make us believe that the only way is THEIR way. SO OVER it!

    • Thanks so much for reading and for your comments!!! Good luck with your upcoming birth. I think you are so right when you said:

      “most people honestly don’t KNOW that they aren’t educated. they actually think that all they need to know is what the doctor tells them. it usually isn’t until someone has a terrible experience that they start to question things, but sometimes even then they don’t realize that there is actually any other choice, because again, the are relying on someone else for their information”

      Yes… most in our society have come to believe the almighty person in the long white coat knows all and is here to save the day. When providers see women as partners in their care and women begin to realize that they do have choices this hierarchy shifts and we have better outcomes and happier moms. Unfortunately it seems like so many are blinded by the bright lights reflecting off the white coat!

      I will also add that I work with many women who, through book learning or not, intuitively know that there is another way, that their doctor may not be giving them all the details, or that something is “just not right” but we are so far from knowing how to tap into our intuition that we ignore those uneasy feelings. Then when things turn wrong we say “hindsight is 20/20” when all along we had “this feeling.” We also have to learn to get tapped into that space of our knowing.

  8. I am OVER letting someone else tell me what is SAFE because I wasn’t smart enough to listen to and TRUST my body…. 3 c sections later (the first one was actually an emergency and necessary since the placenta was partially off and I was bleeding when my water broke) I am going to have a VBA3C. some people have done it, but not many people share it, so I feel like a bit of a pioneer. No one can convince me that they know better about my body than me, and I know deep down in my heart that I am gonna ROCK this homebirth, and blow everyones minds. PERIOD. Hypnobabies, herbal care, and rock solid conviction, baby I am SO ready. 🙂 LETS DO THIS. I Gotta be strong, I have several friends and family who have been having c’s and don’t even question it. my step sister just had a c section for twins. ICK. that one bothers me the most, because there was nothing wrong with her. just scheduled. I gotta be an example, I gotta show people that doctors are the EXCEPTION not the RULE! I am SOO SOO SOOO over doctors. I got this. 🙂

  9. As a 7 month pregnant mother- THANKS! I got sucked into everything that comes with a hospital birth last time and I’m certainly not doing it again- I was educated last time, but wanted to “trust my provider” ha… Beautifully written…

    • THANKS Melissa… and there is nothing wrong with wanting to “trust the provider” Its just so unfortunate that they are not all trust worthy and don’t always act in the best interest of mother, baby, family. It would be nice if we could trust all of our people in “power positions” … Our police, our politicians, our teachers, our bankers, our loan agents… and yes our DOCTORS. But that my friend is a rant of another day…. 😀

  10. Great post! I can’t imagine having your job. Keep fighting the good fight and I hope your new job brings you some peace. Or you could head north…we have OBs here that are “allowing” VBA2C in the hosptial. I’ve had great experiences in the hospital births I’ve attended so far…*knock on wood*

    Head over to JazzFest soon and dance out some of that frustration 😉

    Brandi

    • Hey Brandi!! Hope you are well!! and YES … I will be taking out the stress Jazz Fest weekend 😀
      WOW… VBAC2C!! That’s awesome. I will keep that in mind for local folk. Sometimes the drive is worth it! Thanks for reading.

      • If it helps I had aVBA2C with my twins in a hospital. I am in Canada so different legal environment but if I hadn’t educated myself and asked tough questions it never would have happened. The nurse made all the difference and she helped me because I knew to ask. You need to educate yourself and take responsibility and not leave it with the doctors.

      • Hi Jennifer, Thanks for reading… Congrats on your VBA2C. The climate here is MUCH different. I personally am not faced with that dilemma but many woman in this country are. Yes education is key but unfortunately here in the US even WITH education a woman is forced to do repeat c/s. There are very few providers/hospitals NATIONWIDE that “allow” VBAC even after 1 c/section. There is only one hospital in my city that has providers that TRULY support VBAC beyond lip service. That’s one out of six hospitals. That’s one of the reasons we have the unassisted birth movement. Women are forced to take matters into their own hands… literally and well that’s just not OKAY. And so the fight continues….

  11. You write how I feel! Thank you for sharing this, and for helping me not feel crazy for avoiding hospital births.

    • It has been such an interesting thing to know so many people are feeling this post today. It means we are all caught in this web of man made maternity care and it kicks rocks. PLEASE I beg of you… as a doula PLEASE participate in hospital birth when you can. If a woman has done enough research and is empowered enough to want to hire a doula she needs you on her side. If I were working independently and NOT as an employee of the hospital while I would still be frustrated I would be much more motivated to move on and keep fighting. The thing is as a nurse in the facility I find myself fighting for women who don’t even know I am fighting for them and many could care less. Its a total uphill battle. As a doula I would be fighting for my client who really wants and needs me to fight for her. Don’t eliminate hospital birth altogether. All women can’t/won’t birth at home or in a birth center and they need doulas too! 😀

      • I hear you, and I agree…doulas are needed in hospitals to help moms fight the good fight. But, one thing that I’ve learned is that if I’m going to do this work I have to be at peace before I can serve a woman when she’s most vulnerable. :-/ my issues with hospitals (and even birth centers) go a little deeper than what you describe, although that’s a big part of it. However, there’s also the politics and prejudices that come into play being in the hospital. So, for my sanity, I prefer not to be there.

      • Ohhhh I DO understand… believe me I do… so okay…. maybe just one hospital birth each quarter… like 4 a year.. PLEASE!!!! with sugar on top LOLOL….

  12. LOVE IT.

    So, does that mean you’re looking for a new job? I was thinking of you a few days ago when I saw that Louisiana is tops in the nation for c-section rate. 😦

    OOH, hospitals NEED nurses like you. But OTOH, I can completely understand how it must feel like nonstop hitting your head against a totally immovable wall.

    • Thanks for reading Karen! WOW!! I thought we were second not FIRST! HA… as if that matters. My hospital has a 40% c/s rate 😦

      I am actually starting a new job next month. 🙂 While it will not completely take me away from my current job it will move me closer to getting back into midwifery and it will get me off these consistent night shifts!

  13. This is a great rant. I have only doula’d a few hospital births and yes, it is painful to watch at times. It is really important you don’t burn yourself out, and you find a way to recharge your soul. Those patients will never know how lucky they were to have you as their L&D nurse. Hugs and take good care!

  14. I am new to your blog… and I have to say it made me think. In response to your question I am over what you listed above but I am also “over” women not being honest with other women about pregnancy, childbirth, parenting and their experiences. It is hard, it is wonderful as a whole most of the time but sometimes it just sucks, sometimes it hurts. Why do we hide this from each other? Why do we create this unrealistic expectation and imagery? Why do we do that to each other? Why do we not support each other and be HONEST with each other so we can support each other. Yup, definitely over that.

    Also definitely over women convincing themselves they CAN’T do something. Why do we underestimate ourselves? WHY? Because someone in a white coat tells us we can’t. Last time I checked that person doesn’t know me and doesn’t know what I am capable of thank you very much. My body is pretty damn good and it may not fit your “perfect” little model but it fits mine.

    I am over women claiming victim of repeat c-sections but doing NOTHING to educate themselves. That is also linked to the first thing I am over. If we talked we would educate each other but it seems we (in general) are scared of hearing we were wrong and that there are options and using our voices

    I feel much better getting that out. Thank you.

    • OMG!! Thanks so much for your input and your comment!! I agree on all points!!!

      ABSOLUTELY we have to tell the truth….. I read a quote today (can’t remember from who) and it said… Giving birth is hard, its painful and you CAN do it! I think one myth is that women who have home or unmedicated births have this random high tolerance for pain. That’s not the case.

      Yes its hard, parenting is hard, breastfeeding can be difficult. SHIT… in the words of Langston Hughes… Life ain’t no crystal stair…. Women do need to know all these things AND THEN…. we need to be prepared to tell them why its worth it and be ready to help them through the hard part.

      Glad you are feeling better! A good rant every now and then helps doesn’t it! 😀

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