Hospital/Home/Birth center...?

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IzzysMama's picture
Joined: 10/08/07
Posts: 119
Hospital/Home/Birth center...?

I am curious what everyone's birth plans (or past experiences) are. My DD was born at a hospital but with a midwife attending. It was a great experience, but I'm kind of tempted to pursue the home birth option this time. I and my older sister were both born at home, and a good friend of mine has had two home births. I just hired a doula (YAY) and she also had had home births. There is a hospital only 10 minutes away in case anything were to go wrong. The worst part of my labor & delivery last time was the 30-minute drive to the hospital! Everything else went very well.

I guess what is holding me back is the logistics. My midwife from last time does not do home births anymore, so I would have to change midwives, and I don't know whether my insurance would cover any of it.

Just throwing this out there for general discussion! What are your plans and thoughts?

Joined: 06/26/11
Posts: 331

I'll be doing another hospital birth. I've had to be induced with both of my kids, so I'm assuming this one will probably be the same. My body just doesn't go into labor on its own. I was 9 days overdue with my son and a week overdue with my daughter. I was 3-4 cm dilated for about 2 weeks before she was born and I still had to be induced! With my history of large babies, im pretty sure my doctor isn't going to let me go too long past my due date.

MrsSchepp's picture
Joined: 12/30/06
Posts: 496

Hospital for sure for me. All my kids have been born there. I love my doc and I love the L&D department at my hospital. They are as hands on or hands off as you want them to be. If you want all the bells and whistles (monitoring, drugs, etc) you can do that but if you want to just kind of do things on your own they are fine with that, too. I just cannot say enough good things about my experiences there! Looking forward to doing it again Smile

amyrenee's picture
Joined: 07/11/11
Posts: 168

Right now I'm trying to decide between hospital or birth center. The hospital owns the birth center and they are 50 yards apart. The birth center is for low risk, non-medicated births only and being a first timer and not knowing what to expect, I'm not really sure what my threshold for pain will be. The birth center seems so homey though! Will need to decide in the next few months.

lmh101979's picture
Joined: 07/05/09
Posts: 966

Unless they come up with an at home c-section option, I'm hospital bound. Smile I seriously loved both of my previous births and am even hoping to get the same nurse for the 3ed time. I felt so good after my second birth I couldn't believe it. I don't know if it was the new spinal block they used, but after the IV came out 24 hours later I only used Ibuprofen for the pain.
Amy, I think if you want to do the birth center that sounds so awesome to me. I really wanted to go for a natural birth the first time and didn't do it. I ended up happy, but always wonder what if? It's not like you can't transfer if needed so I say go for it! Especially if you like the center and DH supports it.

Side note: The nurse I liked so much works out at my same gym, would it be weird stalkerish for me to approach her and ask her to work that day?

waitingimpatiently614's picture
Joined: 02/17/09
Posts: 386

i'll be at the hospital, although the idea of a home birth is really appealing to me! i had a hospital birth with OB the first time, and without going into a big long story, it basically didn't go the way i'd hoped. i was pressured into getting an epidural pretty early on when the contractions weren't even painful. i had wanted to try to go unmedicated, but wasn't convinced enough of my decision to stand up for myself. well, everything went downhill from there...stalled labor, baby in distress, threatened c-section, eventual vaginal delivery w/episiotomy and vaccuum. i'm totally supportive of other people getting an epidural or any other interventions they want or need! but this time, i am using a midwife, and doing a hypnobabies home course to prepare for an unmedicated birth. my plan is to stay home as long as possible, and hopefully not go to the hospital until i am in transition (but not wait so long that the baby is crowning as we're driving to the hospital either! lol). being at the hospital with all the monitors, IVs, med students, residents, nursing students, etc. was overwhelming and anxiety-producing for me last time. i am delivering at a different hospital this time, and i am told by my midwife that they are more used to mommas who want a natural birth, so they won't make me get an IV or have continuous monitoring if i say in my birth plan that i don't want those things.

as for home birth, DH would never agree to that because he's such a "worse case scenario" type person, and he's a physician, so he's very medically-minded. unmedicated birth in a hospital with a midwife is the compromise we came to. there's only one birth center in town, and it's not covered by our insurance.

Jessie, i would say to look around for a midwife that does home births, check with your insurance, etc. and try to pursue it! it could be a really cool experience. i have a friend here who recently had a home birth, and her insurance wouldn't reimburse any of it, so she just had to make a cash arrangement with the midwife in advance...i think it was about $2000. but i'll end up paying at least that much in co-insurance for my hospital birth, so it's not a bad deal.

And Amy, i agree that the birth center right next to the hospital sounds like the best of both worlds! i wish i had that option here. if you decide you might want to pursue an unmedicated birth, that would be perfect.

socalmama's picture
Joined: 07/28/11
Posts: 334

I will be at the hospital. I have no plans of doing this un-medicated. I only lasted 3 hours with Kayla (once I was at the hospital) and then had to ask for an epidural. With Eric, I got it right when I got to the hospital. My contractions don't give me a break. I think it may have something to do with all the scar tissue I have from my Endo but it feels like they never stop. So, that being said ... hospital all the way. Smile

Jbaum2's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 257

This is our first, so we are going to the hospital, as a precautionary measure. It puts hubby at ease as well since neither of really know what to expect. We are doing the home hypnobabies course as well, and I am having a non-medicated birth.

Sassy112704's picture
Joined: 04/12/05
Posts: 414

Most definitely hospital and epidural. I have been induced with my other two and will more than likely with this one too. I LOVE my OB - she is the BEST!!! I have had complications with pre-eclamsia (in pregnancy with DD#1 and post-partum BOTH times) so the hospital is my friend during and after baby delivery. Smile

Ktotherystal's picture
Joined: 01/21/08
Posts: 108

Looks like I am the minority here. We are planning a home-birth for baby #3. DD was a HBAC (Home Birth After Cesarean) born into the water, and it was one of the best experiences of my life. Even with a long labor, I felt relaxed and in control of everything that was happening to my baby and body- something I didn't feel at the hospital with DS. We even "transfered" with DD because of my long labor, and the hospital sent me home, which was a pure blessing- they never should have at the point of labor I was in. I continued to have a healthy beautiful birth at home with her.

I highly recommend looking into home-birth if you are interested in a peaceful and beautifully calm birth for your baby. I was amazed at the difference hospital births are for the baby...not just mom. Home-birth is just as safe if not safer for a healthy low-risk mom. It sounds like you already have a great outlook on birth and the natural process versus emergency medical experience most look at it like. That being said, birth is such a personal experience for everyone and you have to do what is comfortable and best for you, your baby and family. I would look more into it if you are interested and continue to see how you feel about it. I am SO excited to have another home-birth and wish every mom could experience it, but I realize it's not for everyone.

Feel free ti ask away if you have any questions for me... I LOVE talking about home-birth!

abbyblack's picture
Joined: 06/18/09
Posts: 146

For me, I'm going to do a hospital birth because my sister-in-law is Chief Medical Officer at the hospital I am going to.

LaurenTA's picture
Joined: 04/12/07
Posts: 20


Hospital birth for me. My first two were induced and I wouldn't be surprised if this one will have to be as well.

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

Mine will be hospital birth too. I absolutely LOVE my OB and will be attempting a VBAC unmedicated. My OB refuses to induce with a VBAC, so I have to go into labor on my own or have a c/s. I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that it'll happen the way I want this time.

However, I would LOVE to do a birth center or home birth. Maybe I'll have a successful VBAC and get to do a Birth Center or home birth with #3.

IzzysMama's picture
Joined: 10/08/07
Posts: 119

The more I think about it, the more I feel like I would love to have a home birth. As I said, my first birth was totally without incident, and was unmedicated. Also, it was very fast. I was only in hard labor for...maybe three hours. I checked in at the hospital at 8:48 a.m. and DD was born at 9:14 a.m.! That's one of the reasons I want to try a home birth--the hospital is about 45 minutes away. YUCKY, not to mention SCARY, to drive that far while in labor.

As an aside, Amanda, unless your drive is VERY short, I do not recommend waiting until transition to drive to the hospital! I did that with DD by accident (didn't realize how fast things were progressing) and that was the most harrowing drive of my life. I was checked by my m/w at her office (5 min from my house) and was 8 cm. She said we needed to leave for the hospital immediately (a 30-minute drive at the time). DH asked if we were going to make it there in time, and midwife answered. "Maybe." !!!

The problem is, my insurance will pay 100 percent of everything if I'm at the hospital with a CNM. No deductible. If I go through the home birth midwife, who is not a CNM, and give birth at home, those costs will not be covered. It will be about $2,000. Sad I need to schedule an appointment to meet her and discuss options, I think.

waitingimpatiently614's picture
Joined: 02/17/09
Posts: 386

"IzzysMama" wrote:

As an aside, Amanda, unless your drive is VERY short, I do not recommend waiting until transition to drive to the hospital! I did that with DD by accident (didn't realize how fast things were progressing) and that was the most harrowing drive of my life.

oh man. thanks for the warning! yeah, i can see how that would have been really scary and also just super uncomfortable to try to deal with the most intense part of labor while in a moving vehicle. but honestly, as scary as i'm sure it was, i'm totally jealous that you only had to be at the hospital 30min. before your daughter was born. i guess i just hate the hospital. it'll be tricky to time it right, and i'm sure we will err on the side of getting to the hospital too soon because DH will be eager to get there once labor starts. our drive to the hospital is only 8-10 minutes. i'd love to get there about an hour before baby is born, but of course there's no way to know that. my first labor was long (24 hours from the time active labor started until DS arrived) but who knows what will happen this time. i doubt it'll be crazy fast (like 3 hours) but it could easily be much faster than my first. i guess if we get there and i'm not as far along as i thought, we can just decline checking in and go back home for a while 'cause it's really not far.

that's a bummer about the cost difference between hospital and home birth for you! i hope you find a solution you can feel good about.

Joined: 05/31/08
Posts: 1131

I say if it's $2,000, that's not enough to not do it if you can work out a payment plan with the mw, which I'm sure you can. Assuming you find a homebirth mw that you feel comfortable with.
I am Jessie's sister and had almost the exact same birth experience with my DS as she did with her DD, right down transitioning on the drive, although I only had a 10 minute drive so it wasn't quite as harrowing, but it was not fun. I was 10 cm on arrival. Whew! Even if I had wanted pain meds, it was far too late by the time I even walked through the hospital door. So for the same reasons, I am considering a homebirth this time. We now have a 30 min drive to the hospital because we moved, and I would prefer a homebirth over a carbirth, if you know what I mean Wink Just the knowledge that I won't have to get into a car and go somewhere while in labor, I'll be able to stay at home and be comfortable and calm and have the people delivering my baby come to ME instead of going to them is enough for me! Although, I still have some hesitations and worry about the "what ifs." So I'm still deciding about this. There's a small hospital with a midwife team nearby, so that is my Plan B (or A, depending on what I decide).
For those of you unsure about whether or not to go unmedicated, or whether to use a mw or an ob, etc, the Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth is a helpful book.

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