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  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    342
    I have not had an unassisted childbirth and I hope not to! Both of my kids were born at freestanding birth centers attended by midwives. We have since moved to another state and there are no birth centers nearby, so I have chosen to have a homebirth this last time around, and am hoping that my midwife will arrive in time. I certainly can't plan on making it to the hospital with how fast my last birth went, so I figured it is better to plan for home birth. My second child was born in only a little over an hour from start to finish. (I had 15 minutes of discomfort, 30 minutes of hard labor, my water broke and my body immediately started pushing (while I was walking out to the car) and then I had a 20 minute drive to the birth center in which I tried not to push, and DS was born 8 minutes after walking in. It would have been even shorter if I didn't have that 20 minute drive.) Thankfully DH was already home when labor started (it was evening). And FTR, that birth hurt like hell. My first labor was so pleasant and manageable in comparison, at 7.5 hours total. The second was like a freight train and it was miserable. Understandably, because that was a lot of dilation in very little time.

    I am actually afraid that I will end up birthing alone this time. I've talked about this with my midwife and she said that most of the time, if labor happens that fast, it's because everything is going the way it should be regarding positioning and cords and such, and so it shouldn't be something I should worry about much if it goes fast again. (Not that I can slow it down!)

    I actually agree with the vast majority of what Blade posted. I think the question of risks is important. For me, the risks of UC do not outweigh the risks of birthing in a hospital. But the risks of having a qualified midwife and a home birth or birth center birth do outweigh the risks of birthing in a hospital for me and my specific situation. Blade stated that the baby cannot consent to the risks that a UC (or HB) present. The only small quibble I have is that the baby cannot consent to the risks that a hospital birth presents either. There are risks on both sides - risks of increased interventions (which result in way more common but perhaps not as serious problems) vs. risks of not enough interventions (which result in much less common but perhaps more serious problems).

    I am all for home birth, but I don't see how choosing unattended childbirth can possibly win in the assessment of risks.

    As I think about UC more, I have a few more thoughts. Even if everything with birth goes perfectly (which it basically has for me), I am so physically exhausted, in a different state mentally because of dealing with the pain, etc., that I can't imagine having to actually take care of myself and the baby alone in a UC. Even just the clean up afterward, or making sure I don't faint the first time I stand up, or any of the extremely simple things would not be in my capacity to accomplish immediately after birth. And if there was any little complication at all - no way. Both times in order to get the placenta out, I've had to stand up and let gravity help. I couldn't even do that by myself without the midwives to help me. I've read that women who UC claim they have some sort of extra energy, extra awareness, extra whatever, precisely because they are not attended during birth. But why would you want to rely on that? Again, I really, really hope my midwife and my husband make it on time!!
    Last edited by aguafresca; December 2nd, 2012 at 11:53 PM.
    Lucía, Sebastián, & Inés
    Next: Eloísa Pilar or Félix Ignacio

  2. #13
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    342
    Quote Originally Posted by sawdust_and_diamonds View Post
    @blade

    I'm trying to decide if I would be willing to attend one or not. I already know tht I am not willing to attend a birth if the mother has received no formal prenatal care seeing as that is completely irresponsible and quite frankly, insane IMO. I have a question, have you ever heard an incidence of a woman having a UC within the walls of a hospital or birth center? By that I mean 0 interventions and self delivery with a nurse in attendance in case things head south and interventions are absolutely necessary. This would be a good option for me to offer clients who are interested in UC.
    I'm not blade, but I'm having a hard time imagining how that scenario would actually work out - UC in a birthing facility? So contradictory! Wouldn't a hospital or birth center have too much liability in this situation if something went wrong, even if they agreed to not intervene and let the woman deliver herself? I mean, how would they come to a mutual agreement that something was wrong and intervention was needed? Only if the woman asked? And why would a woman who wants to UC seek out a situation like that (or your services?) unless she changed her mind at the very end of her pregnancy and then no longer actually wanted to UC. Maybe I'm being naive, but could you explain a bit more about when this kind of thing might happen?
    Lucía, Sebastián, & Inés
    Next: Eloísa Pilar or Félix Ignacio

  3. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by aguafresca View Post
    I'm not blade, but I'm having a hard time imagining how that scenario would actually work out - UC in a birthing facility? So contradictory! Wouldn't a hospital or birth center have too much liability in this situation if something went wrong, even if they agreed to not intervene and let the woman deliver herself? I mean, how would they come to a mutual agreement that something was wrong and intervention was needed? Only if the woman asked? And why would a woman who wants to UC seek out a situation like that (or your services?) unless she changed her mind at the very end of her pregnancy and then no longer actually wanted to UC. Maybe I'm being naive, but could you explain a bit more about when this kind of thing might happen?
    What I'm thinking is more of a modified UC than a traditional one. Also it is not uncommon for women to seek out a doula to attend their UC since a doula is non-medical by definition. I think a woman who wants a UC would be more open to the idea of delivering in a birth center or hospital knowing that she would still be able to catch the baby herself. Certainly this would not be a good alternative for everyone. It would depen on their motives for wanting a UC. I am not a lawyer or a doctor so I don't know the legalities of it or if it would ever be possible which is why I asked someone who might. I couldn't find anything about it in a google search. I just think of it is at all possible that it would make a much safer alternative for me to offer these women than a traditional UC at home. It's always good to have a safety net IMO, but I am all for women wanting to deliver their babies the way nature intended. Within reason of course.

  4. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    4,518
    I didn't mean to be condescending, quite the opposite. I was hoping to have a fruitful discussion and that is exactly what occurred.

    In answer to your question-- absolutely not. No patient can be admitted to a hospital without being under the official, formal care of a licensed and credentialed practitioner (physicians, nurse-practitioners including CNMs, and in some states, PAs). That practitioner must provide care or will be held liable. Even if there are no adverse outcomes, they could be disciplined and lose their license for patient abandonment.

    Birth centers are not considered health facilities in the eyes of the law; instead they are private businesses and are not regulated or licensed any more than a Hallmark franchise (there are no inspections, licenses or permits required to open one), so they can set their own policies. Perhaps a birth center and a non-credentialed midwife who does not have prescribing powers, does not operate under the license of a physician, and is not formally trained (i.e. a "Certified Professional Midwife," or a "Licensed Midwife," or neither) would be willing to provide a 'UC room,' but honestly it goes completely counter to the entire philosophy of UC. I would imagine an ardent UC'er would argue that the presence of help in a nearby room would undercut her sense of autonomy and confidence and would produce worse outcomes, or some such thing.

    In my non-objective, non-official and quite personal opinion, I think Unassisted Childbrith is nothing more than Russian roulette with only bragging rights as a prize. That's why women who have UC'd wear those births on their sleeves like merit badges and talk about them in the same way other people describe drinking 20 tequila shots, tandem skydiving, or climbing Everest, like you're supposed to be really impressed that they're such a badass. While I disagree with homebirth too as a philosophy, at least when I hear women justifying their choice to HB I feel they're being logical and genuine. When I hear women attempt to justify UC, I just hear narcissism.

    Edit: since you asked about nurses attending births-- an RN with no further education and training (not a CNM) cannot attend patients. It is completely outside the scope of training and licensure. Not that a good nurse isn't very savvy and worth their weight in gold (L&D nurses in particular are the primary labor support person for most and have seen everything), but they'd lose their license immediately.
    Last edited by blade; December 3rd, 2012 at 12:42 AM.
    Blade, MD

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  5. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by blade View Post
    I didn't mean to be condescending, quite the opposite. I was hoping to have a fruitful discussion and that is exactly what occurred.

    In answer to your question-- absolutely not. No patient can be admitted to a hospital without being under the official, formal care of a licensed and credentialed practitioner (physicians, nurse-practitioners including CNMs, and in some states, PAs). That practitioner must provide care or will be held liable. Even if there are no adverse outcomes, they could be disciplined and lose their license for patient abandonment.

    Birth centers are not considered health facilities in the eyes of the law; instead they are private businesses and are not regulated or licensed any more than a Hallmark franchise (there are no inspections, licenses or permits required to open one), so they can set their own policies. Perhaps a birth center and a non-credentialed midwife who does not have prescribing powers, does not operate under the license of a physician, and is not formally trained (i.e. a "Certified Professional Midwife," or a "Licensed Midwife," or neither) would be willing to provide a 'UC room,' but honestly it goes completely counter to the entire philosophy of UC. I would imagine an ardent UC'er would argue that the presence of help in a nearby room would undercut her sense of autonomy and confidence and would produce worse outcomes, or some such thing.

    In my non-objective, non-official and quite personal opinion, I think Unassisted Childbrith is nothing more than Russian roulette with only bragging rights as a prize. That's why women who have UC'd wear those births on their sleeves like merit badges and talk about them in the same way other people describe drinking 20 tequila shots, tandem skydiving, or climbing Everest, like you're supposed to be really impressed that they're such a badass. While I disagree with homebirth too as a philosophy, at least when I hear women justifying their choice to HB I feel they're being logical and genuine. When I hear women attempt to justify UC, I just hear narcissism.
    I definitely know why you mean about the bragging rights and merrit badges. In all honesty, I find it increadibly obnoxious. But that is why I don't think I would be willing to attend a birth if I thought the choices the mother was making were for the wrong reasons. I do think that catching your own baby and forgoing interventions is a natural and beautiful thing that any women should be entitled to if she wants it. Again, that goes within reason.

    For me personally, I don't believe that having help nearby in case I needed it would undercut my sense of autonomy or produce worse results. On the contrary, I believe it would reduce stress and my feelings of "what if". I just don't see how a reasonable person could fear having help nearby could produce a worse outcome. But then ardent UC'ers are not known for being the most reasonable people.

    Quick question: do hospitals ever allow the mother to catch her own baby? I have heard of this happening with the father, but never the mother.
    Last edited by sawdust_and_diamonds; December 3rd, 2012 at 12:52 AM.

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