What helped you cope during natural childbirth?

I am delivering at a hospital with midwives and am planning on a natural childbirth. I plan to do most of my laboring at home, since that is what they recommend. What helped you during your natural childbirth? I have been reading a ton (Birthing from Within, Ina May's guide to Childbirth) but I won't be taking Bradley or Lamaze, as Bradley isn't offered in my area. Thanks.


Asked by Anonymous at 1:35 PM on Feb. 2, 2009 in Pregnancy

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Answers (16)
  • The only thing that helped me was that I just kept telling myself that it was going to get worse. That the current pain wasnt that bad and I needed to get through it and she would be here soon enough. I kinda convinced myself before hand that meds wasnt and option and so i had no choice but to just get through it and hang tough.

    Answer by asholan_07 at 1:39 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • I plan on doing the same thing. There aren't any classes offered in my area because NO ONE wants a natural birth. I have read so many books on the methods and have been practicing what I've read at home. My husband and mother are the only two who support me in doing it natural and they are the only ones going into the room with me. I know they will be great support and I think I am just stubborn enough to get through the pain. In all honesty, I will be very disappointed if I end up getting meds and I think that is enough to keep me going.

    Answer by bluelady27 at 1:40 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • My mom's advice was to hold out as long as possible b/c then it's too late and they won't give you anything, anyway. I've already told my DH to make sure nurses do not bother me or continually try to offer me medication. He will be the only one allowed in the room with me, def. not my MIL b/c she seems all set with trying to medicate me.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:42 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • I used Bradley with my first and ended up not liking it and having to learn breathing techniques for lamaze which DID help. Soothing music, a warm bath, and if things get really bad having a shot of a pain killer does help.

    Answer by gemgem at 1:43 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • I would recommend hypnobirthing. The classes really helped but you can also get the book. Just make sure it is by Dr. Mongon. I also liked Birthing from Within. I had to be started due to pre-ecclampsia but really wanted a natural childbirth. My midwife was very supportive (she was a hypnobirthing instructor) but told me I would most likely have an epidural to keep my blood pressure down. Luckily, we didn't have too. It was an intense labor due to the pitocin (yuck). But we made. I know I would not have been able to do it without the knowledge I gained from hypnobirthing. There is the education half which goes over our anatomy, chemistry, and biology which is AMAZING. And there is also the hypnosis part. It is not as wierd as it sounds. It just helps you stay really calm during labor. I was able to fall asleep during most of my contractions. Message me if you have any questions.

    Answer by jcsscfam5 at 1:44 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • Ummmmm....IV drugs and epidural!

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:47 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • i took long showers. i was surrounded by super annoying family members in my room. so i told everyone that they were not allowed to enter the bathroom while i was in it lol. i wouldnt even let my husband in. take some alone time to focus on YOU and what your body is doing.

    Answer by IGotLuckyInKy at 1:50 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • I think it all depends too on your dedication to actually sticking with natural birthing and not giving in when the pain gets to be too much. I have a high tolerance for pain and I knew beforehand with both my girls that I didn't want any meds. That's how my mom delivered, my sister, and my best friend and they all made it through with no problems. I just labored at home for as long as I could and by the time we got to the hosp. with my first I was already dilated to 8 cm and with my 2nd I was already dilated to 9. So I was pretty much ready to push when I got to the hosp. With my 1st it was definitely the hardest thing I've ever done but the 2nd time around I felt completely in control and concentrated on my breathing during contractions. I was totally satisfied w/ both my birthing experiences & wouldn't have changed either one. I wish you all the best and hope you get the natural birth you want!

    Answer by princesspalace at 1:56 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • The huge tub at the hospital was amazing.

    Answer by Rebecca7708 at 1:57 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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  • I think you are on the right track by reading up on a lot of different methods. Practice the techniques that seem to resonate for you. I found the Bradley method and hypnobirthing to be the methods I used the most of. I mostly meditated during my contractions and focused on consciously relaxing all my other muscles during contractions. I focused on one contraction at a time and gave myself a little pep talk through each one (just a little longer, you can do it!!) Dh was specifically instructed not to try to give me any direction but to limit his role to cheerleader for me and interfacing with hospital staff so I could focus on what I needed to do. Hot water was great, I liked the shower much better than the tub.


    Answer by riotgrrl at 1:59 PM on Feb. 2, 2009

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