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MIL unsupportive of birth plan - HELP. Lock Rss

Hey all.

So my MIL and I generally get along well, but she refuses to support my birthing plans. I am currently 17 weeks pregnant and I'm really interested in a natural home water birth. It is my first baby and she thinks I am too naiive to make this decision.

I have spent a lot of time researching, and asked my midwife lots of questions who is more than happy to assist me. My husband doesn't know his feelings yet, and won't choose a side when myself and my MIL talk about it. Although I say talk, it is more that she lectures me.

She continues to tell me horrific birth stories about all the babies that die, or that would have died had they not been born in hospital. In our first conversation she called me selfish and said if I cared about my child at all I would go to hospital. Just this evening she brought it up again and told me that my baby will die and that when it does she will know at least she told me not to do it.

I don't want to keep arguing with her, but I am afraid I won't have any support for my birth and will eventually have to do as she wants which is so against how i feel. Her main concern is that I live 40 mins away from a hospital, however my midwife has assisted numerous successful home births out of the city, and at this stage doesn't believe I am a risk. She did say that should things change or look suspicious she will send me to hospital sooner than she would someone close to town, and I trust her.

I know this is my first baby and I understand that she is worried that I am ignorant on the pain/process of birth. But it will be painful regardless of where I am so why am I not allowed to be comfortable in my own home when going through such a natural thing. I feel like I cannot approach her with anything and my parents live in Nelson (me in chch) so they aren't around enough for me to approach if I had problems. As I said my husband cannot make a decision and so other than my midwife I have nobody on my side. I have contacted Home Birth Aotearoa but have had no response, does anybody know of support groups I can go to? Or have some suggestions on how to deal with this situation? I know this stress isn't good for me or baby, and I need to be comfortable with my birth plan in order to have the birth I want.

Some people have suggested telling my MIL I have changed my mind and will have it in hospital, but have a homebirth anyway, but I don't want to have to lie, I just want to be able to have an open and honest conversation without being told I am selfish or harming my baby.

Any suggestions or help would be really appreciated.

worried FTM

Sounds like a tough position. She's probably right that you don't know what it'll be like... But every pregnancy and birth is different and no one knows what will happen until it does regardless of if its your first bub or not. I think if you've got a midwife who will attend the birth and you are happy with the risks and benefits of a home birth then it sounds like a good option if that's what you are most comfortable with.

Out of curiosity have you looked into a birth centre? I wanted a home birth experience but there are no midwives who will do them where I live and it was the good compromise of a no intervention birth while still having a hospital next door. The birth centre I went to had a lovely big bath and a double bed my husband could stay in with me after the birth. They could dim the lights and do music etc. The midwives could do massage. It was exactly what I wanted at home but without the actually being at home part (and on the plus side no mess to clean up!).

When my son was born I did end up having complications. My son was completely fine but I was quite unwell and with hindsight I'm glad I wasn't at home with my husband calling for an ambulance. Given my past experience I personally would never have a home birth in the future but I know others on here have had them and are very happy with them.

Anyway whatever you do you need to be happy with it. Hope that helps. Good luck.
Maybe talk to you husband about him having a quiet word with you mil and asking her to back off for a while. He doesn't have to have made a decision about what he thinks is the better option for your family to do that, it's just simply a case of saying something along the lines of 'you've made it plain what your views on a home birth are. please stop with the horror stories to my wife/partner, we've listened, we respect that you have a different viewpoint on this to what G_T has but continuing to pressure her about it is only causing stress and worry and not helping your stance in this."

Other than that, all I can really suggest is having your points like the fact that your midwife will be sending you earlier than she would normally if she has concerns because of the distance etc and putting them to her one more time and then asking her to respect the fact that, since she can't be respectful about your decision, you no longer want to discuss this with her.

All the best and I hope that your mil realises that she's pushing you away and pulls her head in a bit with the pressure about this and lets things rest for a while.

Hi there. I've had three awesome amazing births at home including my first child and am due to have my fourth in 8 weeks! It sounds like you know what you want and I always say the safest and best place for you to have baby is where you feel most comfortable, in your case it definitely sounds at home! I love home births and encourage anyone to do it. Trust your body and your midwife. I have had an awesome midwife for my first two, and a different but equally awesome midwife for the third and current pregnancy. I have always said if the midwife says there is a need to go to hospital I would otherwise I don't see giving birth as a reason to go to hospital. Hospital is for the sick, giving birth is no such thing smile

Best of wishes
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