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Moms who have used a midwife or a birthing center - I have a lot of questions

Posted by on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:16 PM
  • 16 Replies

I'm due 7/7/13. My first daughter was born 7/27/08, and after having her I learned exactly what I DIDN'T want to happen again. So now I'm looking into alternative options, but I really don't know much of anything about them. My questions are in bold if you care to skip to them.


I don't believe in unnecessary invasive procedure, which includes testing for the sake of testing. My OBGYN tried to force me into genetic testing and the multiple marker screen, even though my SO and I are at no ethnic or genetic risk and have no recessive defects in our families (and don't believe in abortion anyways). I've taken medical classes (I'm an x-ray tech) and know all the markers for diabetes, too (which only effects 4-8% of pregnant women, being more common in obese women, Native Americans, Latin Americans, and African Americans - none of which I am), so I feel this testing is also a way to sucker money from my insurance. And, while sugar in the urine isn't terribly uncommon for pregnant women, the doctor refused to even check my urine before demanding a blood sample (sugar will appear in your urine if you have uncontrolled diabetes). All in all, the OBGYN was demanding "at least 5 vials of blood." Not happening. We decided it would be best to part ways. Even if I didn't feel strongly about this, I have an intensive fear of things deliberately puncturing my skin and just the mention of of a needle approaching my body is enough to make my normally-low blood pressure take a dramatic spike. I also hyperventilate very badly - sometimes for up to 15min - and I can become hysterical. I feel like that trauma would be worse to the baby than some theoretical "routine testing". So question number one about midwives - would they work with me on this or would they also try to demand several vials of blood?


I've always wanted a water birth - I did with my daughter, too, but the hospital refused it, and her being my first, I listened to them. I know that this an amenity typically only offered by birthing centers, and I found out about a very nice birthing center that even offers jacuzzi tubs - but it's at least 40min away. This worries me a little bit, but I know that when I gave birth to my daughter the hospital made me wait out in the waiting room, in labor, for at least that long "because they didn't have any rooms". I had a very long labor with my daughter - all night - but I don't know if that will happen again. My water was broken the next morning and I was induced with Pitocin. I never, ever want that to happen again. I feel like they were just trying to get me out of the delivery room, and the contractions with the Pitocin were so painful that, even though I hadn't had any pain medication and was fine before that, I was screaming for the anesthesiologist because I would have rathered died than feel that pain. But this brings up my concern that if something DOES go wrong, or I just can't do it naturally - do birthing centers keep an anesthesiologist and a doctor on staff or is it just midwives? I also had an episiotomy. I don't know how I feel about that. To this day there's so much controversy over whether tears or episiotomys are better, but the result was that I had to have 8 stitches. Can someone at a birthing center sew me up, if needed?


After my daughter was born, the hospital took her for two full hours before I saw her. There was nothing wrong with her and there was no reason for them to keep her so long, and when I would ask for her the staff was rude to me ("You'll be spending the next 18 years with her, there's no reason to rush it"). So at a birthing center what happens with your baby after it's born? Do they bring it somewhere or do testing, or does it stay with its mother? I also stayed at the hospital for 4 days with my daughter (because the dr forgot to check me out). How long does a mother/ baby typically stay at a birthing center? Is there a place for Dad to sleep? And I have to admit, as much as I hated about the hospital, I did LOVE those "freebies" (hey, bill my insurance for that stuff any day) - the two weeks worth of diapers, wipes, and formula (I wasn't able to nurse DD, and this is a concern for this child, too), along with the nasal aspirator, thermometer, and blanket. Plus that squirt bottle and super pads for me. Do birthing centers give a home care package to their patients? And speaking of things insurance cover - Do birthing centers take insurance? What about midwives - can they take it?


Back to the midwives, I have another concern. I went into pre-term labor with DD on 6/21/08. She was due 8/8/08. Three days of pure hell. The hospital gave me magnesium, which I had a strong reaction to. I threw up every single hour, plus I threw up anything - solid or liquid - that hit my stomach. And, in case you didn't know already, your blood has to be tested every couple of hours when you're on a magnesium drip because it's toxic (Remember my great fear? Thank God that magnesium had me so deathly sick and hardly able to move, or they never would have succeeded at taking my blood). When my vision became blurry and my head hurt too much to sit up I demanded to be taken off of it. I had 2 or 3 nurses argue with me, and they sent in a doctor to argue with me, but I told them "This isn't good for me, and I can't imagine that it's good for my baby." So they put me on a pill (I can't remember which) to stop my contractions, and the baby stayed in without any problems until I ran out of pills. But because I went into pre-term labor once, I know I'm at risk for it again - so what does a midwife do if you go into pre-term labor? Does she send you somewhere else? And does your midwife go to your birthing center, or do birthing centers have designated midwives?


I think that's all the questions I can think of at the moment, but if any of you ladies have any additional information about birthing centers, water births, or midwives I would love to hear it! I know that every midwife/ birthing center is probably different, but I at least want to get a general idea before I call up a midwife and bombard her. Thank you ladies so much!

Lilypie Fifth Birthday tickers

by on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:16 PM
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Replies (1-10):
snowpeasmom
by Gold Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:26 PM
I had a home birth with midwife. My.mom had a birth center.

Hb- my midwife said as long as my pee, bp and our heart rates were good, I didn't need anything else though she had to offer.if I went into early labor or needed to go to the hospital, she would become my doula. (Didn't happen)

At my house she brought ivs and everything I needed to prepare me in case of hospital transfer,(though again didn't need it, oh and the hospital is 4 blocks from my house)

I did need stitches, and she gave me a local and stitched me up right there.

Brb to answer more
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davnrori
by Platinum Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:27 PM

 I had midwives for 2 of my 3 births. Generally birthing centers will follow a less invasive path than hospitals because they believe that the body will naturally know what to do at the time of birth. However, they will still need a blood sample to rule out the need for antibiotics during birth. They can't just take your word that you are not sick or do not have a virus that can be passed to your baby.

You will have to give a detailed medical history of your previous pregnancy and birth. Many birthing centers will not agree to take women who have a history of needing medcal intervention, such as preterm labor, because they do not have a NICU on the premises and if a baby or mother goes into distress or needs a c-section they have to be rushed to the nearest ER.

There will be an anesthesiologist there but they will probably not have a doctor on staff. If you want a doctor you need to go to the hospital and this is the reason you have to have had a normal uncomplicated previous pregnancy or have no medical problems At All if this is your first birth.

Birthing centers do give you a home care package, they allow all procedures concerning the baby to take place in the birthing room or allow a parent to be present at all times, and some accept insurance and some don't.

Anonymous
by Anonymous on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:28 PM

I'm sorry--I cannot answer your questions regarding a midwife, as I've never used one. I had my last 2 babies at a birthing center. Both births were AWESOME!!! The birthing center I was at has anesthesiologists on hand 24/7. There are always Drs. in the center 24/7 as well. Yes--you can get sewn up at a birthing center. The baby stays in the room with the mom as long as there is no emergency with the baby. They weigh the baby in your room, clean the baby up, etc., etc. Then you get to hold your baby within 10-15 minutes of birth. A lot of moms who have an uncomplicated birth are allowed to go home after 24 hours. Some Drs. will let you go home in 12 hours. At the center we used, yes they have a pull-out sofa for dad. I got a full package of baby diapers, the nose aspirator, thermometer and a hand-made baby hat!! I just told the nurse I only had 2 diapers left, and she ran and brought me a FULL package! They just charge your insurance for it anyways. Yes-the birthing center should take your insurance and do all of the billing for you. Midwives--I have no clue--I've only heard that some insurance companies do NOT cover for a Midwife. I hope this helps!! I'm sure someone else can answer all of your Midwife questions. Best wishes to you!! Oh!! Also, A LOT of birthing centers have AMAZING jetted bathtubs!! They allow you to sit in the tub while you are in labor. Some birthing centers allow you to deliver in the tub and some do not. GOOD LUCK!!  :)

PS--a PP said that they don't have emergency services--that is not true of "ALL" birthing centers. The birthing center we used, has 5 surgical suites right across the hall from the birthing rooms. They are there in case there is need for an emergency c-section or other medical complication that requires immediate surgery. I would NEVER EVER use a birthing center that did not have surgical suites at the center EVER!! My friend was actually saved at this birthing center when she started bleeding really bad, and her baby needed to be delivered by c-section! The Drs. told her had it not been for the surgical suite being right there, she and her baby both would have DIED!!!!!

Raeann11
by Ruby Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:31 PM


Quoting Night_Roane:


I'm due 7/7/13. My first daughter was born 7/27/08, and after having her I learned exactly what I DIDN'T want to happen again. So now I'm looking into alternative options, but I really don't know much of anything about them. My questions are in bold if you care to skip to them.


I don't believe in unnecessary invasive procedure, which includes testing for the sake of testing. My OBGYN tried to force me into genetic testing and the multiple marker screen, even though my SO and I are at no ethnic or genetic risk and have no recessive defects in our families (and don't believe in abortion anyways). I've taken medical classes (I'm an x-ray tech) and know all the markers for diabetes, too (which only effects 4-8% of pregnant women, being more common in obese women, Native Americans, Latin Americans, and African Americans - none of which I am), so I feel this testing is also a way to sucker money from my insurance. And, while sugar in the urine isn't terribly uncommon for pregnant women, the doctor refused to even check my urine before demanding a blood sample (sugar will appear in your urine if you have uncontrolled diabetes). All in all, the OBGYN was demanding "at least 5 vials of blood." Not happening. We decided it would be best to part ways. Even if I didn't feel strongly about this, I have an intensive fear of things deliberately puncturing my skin and just the mention of of a needle approaching my body is enough to make my normally-low blood pressure take a dramatic spike. I also hyperventilate very badly - sometimes for up to 15min - and I can become hysterical. I feel like that trauma would be worse to the baby than some theoretical "routine testing". So question number one about midwives - would they work with me on this or would they also try to demand several vials of blood? I had a home birthing midwife with my first and third. They never forsed anything on me. If they felt it was needed we would do it.


I've always wanted a water birth - I did with my daughter, too, but the hospital refused it, and her being my first, I listened to them. I know that this an amenity typically only offered by birthing centers, and I found out about a very nice birthing center that even offers jacuzzi tubs - but it's at least 40min away. This worries me a little bit, but I know that when I gave birth to my daughter the hospital made me wait out in the waiting room, in labor, for at least that long "because they didn't have any rooms". I had a very long labor with my daughter - all night - but I don't know if that will happen again. My water was broken the next morning and I was induced with Pitocin. I never, ever want that to happen again. I feel like they were just trying to get me out of the delivery room, and the contractions with the Pitocin were so painful that, even though I hadn't had any pain medication and was fine before that, I was screaming for the anesthesiologist because I would have rathered died than feel that pain. But this brings up my concern that if something DOES go wrong, or I just can't do it naturally - do birthing centers keep an anesthesiologist and a doctor on staff or is it just midwives? My first was at a Free Standing birth center. If for some reason something went wrong and the midwife could not take care of it. We would transfer. She only had transferred a couple of times and only because of state laws on when you water broke. But all birthings centers are different. So this is something you will have to ask them personally.    I also had an episiotomy. I don't know how I feel about that. To this day there's so much controversy over whether tears or episiotomys are better, but the result was that I had to have 8 stitches. Can someone at a birthing center sew me up, if needed? Midwifes are trained to do stitches.


After my daughter was born, the hospital took her for two full hours before I saw her. There was nothing wrong with her and there was no reason for them to keep her so long, and when I would ask for her the staff was rude to me ("You'll be spending the next 18 years with her, there's no reason to rush it"). So at a birthing center what happens with your baby after it's born? Do they bring it somewhere or do testing, or does it stay with its mother? With my first baby stayed with you. She put her right onto my belly and stayed there till I was ready for her to do the weighing. But all places are different. So these are things you will have to ask where you are going.     I also stayed at the hospital for 4 days with my daughter (because the dr forgot to check me out). How long does a mother/ baby typically stay at a birthing center? Is there a place for Dad to sleep? Again this is different for all birthing centers and you need to ask them. For my first we were there for 5 hours and then went home.  And I have to admit, as much as I hated about the hospital, I did LOVE those "freebies" (hey, bill my insurance for that stuff any day) - the two weeks worth of diapers, wipes, and formula (I wasn't able to nurse DD, and this is a concern for this child, too), along with the nasal aspirator, thermometer, and blanket. Plus that squirt bottle and super pads for me. Do birthing centers give a home care package to their patients? Again all places are different. With my first she gave us a blanket, package of diapers and wipes, squirt bottle for my bottom, herbal bath stuff for two weeks worth, some pads with the herbal stuff in it and to freeze.   And speaking of things insurance cover - Do birthing centers take insurance? What about midwives - can they take it? Again this is something you would have to ask them. For where I am the free standing birth center no. They will not cover home birthing midwives here. My first she did a payment plan with you and worked with you on what you could afford. With my third that was born at home. My midwife said pray to God and tell me what you feel you could afford. We paid her the ffollowing tax time after baby was 4 months old and I also made her some crocheted hats, purse notebooks and stamped cards.


Back to the midwives, I have another concern. I went into pre-term labor with DD on 6/21/08. She was due 8/8/08. Three days of pure hell. The hospital gave me magnesium, which I had a strong reaction to. I threw up every single hour, plus I threw up anything - solid or liquid - that hit my stomach. And, in case you didn't know already, your blood has to be tested every couple of hours when you're on a magnesium drip because it's toxic (Remember my great fear? Thank God that magnesium had me so deathly sick and hardly able to move, or they never would have succeeded at taking my blood). When my vision became blurry and my head hurt too much to sit up I demanded to be taken off of it. I had 2 or 3 nurses argue with me, and they sent in a doctor to argue with me, but I told them "This isn't good for me, and I can't imagine that it's good for my baby." So they put me on a pill (I can't remember which) to stop my contractions, and the baby stayed in without any problems until I ran out of pills. But because I went into pre-term labor once, I know I'm at risk for it again - so what does a midwife do if you go into pre-term labor? Does she send you somewhere else? And does your midwife go to your birthing center, or do birthing centers have designated midwives? Again this is something you will have to take to they about. For my home birthing midwives. If I went into labor before 37 weeks. I had to go to the hospital.


I think that's all the questions I can think of at the moment, but if any of you ladies have any additional information about birthing centers, water births, or midwives I would love to hear it! I know that every midwife/ birthing center is probably different, but I at least want to get a general idea before I call up a midwife and bombard her. Thank you ladies so much!


Night_Roane
by Gold Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:32 PM

Thank you women so much for your answers so far! I really wish I had more people I could talk to about this!

Lilypie Fifth Birthday tickers

Anonymous
by Anonymous on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:37 PM
I had my kids at a birth center so I can answer based on my experience

As far as blood

Yes I had to do several things. It was required. an HIV TEST and drug test. This was not an option

Freestanding birth centers do not have any Anesthesiologist or doctors on staff. However they do work with a hospital usually if it anytime I decided I could not do it naturally I could have requested transferred to a hospital. Midwives are trained in many emergency situations truthfully I would feel more comfortable with a midwife dealing with a emergency than a doctor obviously not an emergency that required a C-section but typical things that come up in labor and delivery

Yes a midwife can sew you up

At my birth center beyond taking babies temp and vitals that was it. Baby was handed to me

I left 4 hours after baby was born. No need for a sleeping place

My birth center took insurance. That will simply depend if they hold insurance contracts or not

I'm not sure what you mean by do they send home care packages

If you go into preterm labor you would need to go to a hospital at my birth center they will not deliver anyone prior to 37 weeks even a day prior to 37 weeks and you must deliver at the hospital the birth center its self will have midwifes a midwife won't specifically go there for you they have midwifes on staff. My birth centers have a physician that they work with and they will have you see this physician one time as a consultation to establish care should you need transfer to a hospital
Allie_kat1
by Gold Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:39 PM
I had a homebirth with midwife. She offered all the standard testing, but left it up to us to consent or decline.

My midwife does have a backup ob, but to use anything they offered, you had to transfer to the hospital. I never even saw the backup ob.

My midwife did have the local anesthetic and suturing supplies to stitch up at my home, but i didn't tear, so i didn't need it.

My baby was handed up to me and on my chest immediatly. All his newborn screenings and such were done on my chest, where he stayed and nursed for about the first hour. Then she weighed/measured/ did a more thorough checkup right there on the bed.

I was already home, but i know the birth center my midwife rubs, you only stay 6-8 hrs usually.

Home care package, and whether insurance will cover it is entirely based on the midwife and/or your insurance.

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Allie_kat1
by Gold Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:42 PM
Oh and preterm labor would have required a hospital. I went into labor at 36.6, and especially since there had been discrepancy over my actual dd, my midwife was comfortable attending my birth at home.
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liveforever
by Silver Member on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:43 PM
I had a midwife but a hospital birth. The only blood I had drawn was my 1st appt and that was an HIV test. I had a very easy pregnancy and like you no history or risk of genetic problems so those tests were never done. The midwife is able to stitch you if you tear. I tore a little and only had a couple stitches. My birth at the hospital was great.I had everything there if an emergency arose, but everyone listened to me and what I wanted.

Good luck to you!
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PolkaDots3220
by on Feb. 27, 2013 at 12:44 PM
I have lupus so I had o birth at the birthing center in the hospital for dd, just incase of complications. Everything was still natural and just as I had wanted it to be.
With ds I was allowed to do a home birth because my midwife felt it was okay. Everything still went great!
I don't really know much about how they work in all situations. I think they try their best to work with your wishes.
Best of luck momma! Hope you find what you are looking for!
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