Birth Plan: Did/do you have one?

For expecting mothers, who is planning on taking a birth plan to the hospital? For mothers who've already given birth, did you have a birth plan? Did you stick to it, or was some improvising necessary? What is/was in your birth plan?

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30  Answers

382 10

Yes, I had a birth plan. I discussed it with my doctor at my first prenatal appointment. I wanted an intervention-free birth; no electronic monitor, no IV, no routine episiotomy, no epidural, and I wanted to be allowed to eat during labor. I had to hunt to find a doctor who was in favor of my birth plan. With my first one, I did get an episiotomy because of fetal distress, but I never had it with the other three births. I was able to get all the other aspects of my birth plan. I also did not want the eye drops for the baby or the vitamin K shot; I was able to sign a waiver and avoid those things.

2
22 21

I knew what I wanted but I didn't focus on that, I wanted a waterbirth at the maternity ward no drugs. When I went in the first time my blood pressure was up, I knew I wouldn't get a waterbirth from then on. I ended up in hospital too, but no drugs.
I think birth plans are good AS LONG AS you don't obsess over it and not want to budge if something different needs to happen. Its good for the midwife/OBGN to know what you would like but as long as you know that it doesn't always go to plan!

2
0 0

Yes I had a birth plan.... my Dr really wanted me to have one, he wanted a copy like a month before I had my daughter so that he could go over it and see that everything could be done.... The only thing he did not agree with in my plan was the fact that I did not want any meds... he was so sure that because I am younger and little I would change my mind... but I just stayed home till my water broke so I was at the hospital less then 2 hours before I delivered with no meds of any kind

1
0 12

Absolutely!!! My birth plan was carefully thought out and followed with both deliveries. As a matter of fact, the nurse in charge of the Lamaze class we attended with our first child asked permission to utilize it in her classes. Imagine my surprise when a few years later I returned for a refresher class and recognized it in the packet of information. Not all births are "according to plan." There needs to be room to be flexible and realize the goal is a successful delivery with both mother and child healthy and safe. Yet, knowledge is power and knowing what to expect is important. Discussing options is key. But do not feel inadequate if things are not according to plan. Remember the goal is to give birth!

1
6 7

I had a birth plan for my first daughter. She was born in a hospital and the birth plan was completely ignored. But, I had my second daughter at a birthing center. The midwife and doula we had helped with the plan and it was followed exactly, all the way down to the music that was played. I felt more comfortable with my plan being followed because I knew what was planned, rather than dealing with the unexpected as well as giving birth.

1
62 0

haha nothing ever goes to plan if you make one -

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2 0

I had one since I wanted a birth with no medical intervention, not even an IV. I was stuck with a hospital because there were no birth centers around where I lived. I'm glad I drew it up because I realized that some things were going to be a struggle. I had to negotiate with my OB who insisted on the IV (so I agreed to have the needle inserted in my hand in case of emergency, but without the IV actually attached). Once my OB had agreed to everything else, I then had the hospital to contend with.

In the end, I'm glad I had one because I knew what to expect and things went well. And yes, while things don't always go your way, it is best to be prepared to the best of your ability, and being prepared also means knowing what to expect in labor and delivery (take classes, read, etc.) so you know what is normal. Too many doctors play on your ignorance to suggest interventions and even a C-section when you may not really need them.

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16 23

No
I spoke to my wonderful OB/gyn about it and he said that nature often throws us cruve balls and he recommended we tell him if we had specific likes or dislikes but to not write up a birth plan. He said it is an emotional time and often they are thrown out of the window at the last minute and this could cause dissapointment and possibly bring on depression with some people when things were not as they wanted it - your plan should be to go home with a health baby.
I had a c-sec, I wanted one, but my doc also told me not to make a definite choice on that either. Sometimes people plan for a c-sec and baby comes earlier than expected... Or they wanted natural and c-sec is necessary.

0
231 0

I was positive i wanted some sort of pain management drugs. I didn't know I was capable of going to 5 or 6 cm without them. When I got to 5 or 6 cm I got the epidural. When it was time to deliver I had made it CLEAR to my doctor not to assist my delivery unless it was necessary and not to give me an episiotomy.. He did EXACLY as I asked. My FIRST child(girl) was pushed out in 25 minutes!! The nurse gave me a perineal massage the whole time, but I still got a 2nd degree laceration. I'm still happy with my choices.

0
14 0

i gave birth 2011 and i dont have birthplan. im pregnant now and still dont need it. since everything is not according to your plan. it would be a big dissappointment if ever your birth plan did not happen.

0
108 76

Yes, I had a birth plan, a pretty specific one. But because I went into labor when my regular OB/GYN wasn't on that day, I had someone else during delivery who was not familiar with my birth plan. So, I had to be flexible on some things. THe most important things I spoke up about, like the epidural, who was to be in the delivery room and where baby was to be after delivery. If you know that you will be delivered by your regular doctor, at your 34 week check up, take your plan in and discuss your wishes with your doctor. Also have a copy of your plan added to your chart. Be prepared to hear that there are a few things on your plan that they can't accommodate. I wanted to labor in my own clothes, but it was hospital policy that all patience be in hospital issue gowns. Your doctor will be able to sift through those kinds of things early, and then you can adjust your plan accordingly. Remember, the hospital wants you to be comfortable, and have the things that will keep you as comfortable as possible. But they also won't want anything in the way that will prevent them from helping you and your baby during labor. Keep that in mind while formulating your plan.

0
6 0

Yes, I did have a birth plan. It was altered a lot, my thought is have a birth plan but beprepared to go with the flow if need be.

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12 0

my birth plan was to have a c-section and be medicated! i wanted my baby's birth to be a pain free and joyful occasion. i was worried about him being full term because my OB scheduled his birth for 39 weeks on May 5th, but he came the night before all on his own, i always new my due date was off, but here was my proof- my water broke the night before i was scheduled to go in for my c-section--so we went ahead and did the c-section on May 4th. Other than the date being one day off, my birth went exactly as planned. so happy!!

0
0 17

I had a birth plan and a doula. The hospital, nurses, and my doctor were very supportive and followed my plan to the T. Of course, my plan wasn't crazy over the top with demands that weren't realistic. Also being a nurse I know that even the best laid plans don't always work like you would like them to. So, my birth plan was pretty simple and straight forward.

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36 13

Didn't have one (except in my mind) I really thought the nurses would respect my wishes, that since my doctor didn't have any objection to my stated intentions that I would get what I wanted. Got to the hospital and was bullied (IMO) until I got to the maternity ward. L&D was horrendous, and I have no nice memories of that time. My daughter's birth was anticlimactic, and really, a let down. She is fantastic, everything was "fine", but it was nothing like I hoped, and there was no medical reason for it to go any way other than what I had planned.

If you have a dream on how things will go, put it in writing. You can always change your mind, but if what you want is even slightly outside of the hospital "policy", if you don't have it in writing, you risk them ignoring you completely and pushing you into interventions you don't want, and don't need.

I hope most people have a better experience, and avoid my Nurse Ratchett, but why not have your intentions in writing?

0
15 1

lol whats a birth plan? isnt that one of those things first time mothers have to make themselves feel like they are in control of the birth?? hahahahhahahahhahahahhahahhahahhahahahhahahahahahhahaahhahah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
yes i had one with my first but it was useless, utterly useless, so i did not bother with my second at all. lol you have no control over how it pans out really so there is no point planning anything at all. all you can do is tell everyone involved how you would like it to go, but in the end all you can do is go with the flow.
for instance, my birthplan included - labouring in the bath - i frigin hated it - had to get out!
using gas and air - hated it!
no epidural - caved, had one, loved it!
didnt even entertain the thought of a c sec for failure to progress - which is exactly what happened!
wanted music playing - did not even hear anything else but my own screaming
wanted to move around and labour on the birthing ball - was most comfortable on the bed
there is just NO WAY to know whats gonna happen and how you are gonna cope with it, every birth is totally different and you just have to take it as it comes :)

0
58 6

No I read multiple books on birthing took a class and breastfeeding class I knew I wanted too I went into my pregnancy expecting the best and the worst my first ended up being csection hi heart rate dropped and after 3 months of breastfeeding I couldnt do it anymore my second was planned csection and he was a natural at breastfeeding I'd of liked to of had a water birth but it is what it is

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38 0

Even though I have had all four of my kids at home, I found that creating a birth plan helped facilitate communication between me and my midwives. At a hospital, though, there are health care "professionals" that go out of their way to make things difficult for mothers who have birth plans. It's important that you and your health care team are communicating well so you can determine in advance whether they really do have your best interests in mind.

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12 18

Did I have a birth plan? Umm.. kinda I guess, but I didn't think of it as that... My plan was simple.. First of all... I wanted the epidural... I knew that WAY before I even went into labor and my husband and doctor knew that well before as well... When it came time to pushing I didn't want anybody in the room except my husband, the doctor, and the nurse... something that was also well known to my doctor and husband... Unfortunately though, that part didn't go accordingly to plan... See, my sister came to visit me when I was in labor (had the epidural at that point) and she knew what room I was in (which was funny, because just 4 weeks before that she was in the EXACT SAME room giving birth to her daughter).. So my mom, who lived out of town, and was also in that room 4 weeks before knew exactly where she was going.. she came in the room 10 minutes after my daughter was born (when they had her under the light and were doing whatever to her over there) and I was just about to get stitched up and deliver the placenta... so... fortunately she was too distracted with my daughter to look at what was going on with me, and I was soo out of it I didn't even care.. but still..

My next baby I am going to have a birth plan. It's going to be very similar to the one I had before, but a little more specific... Those two features will be included, although I dont care if my mom is in the room, but it will also include that my baby is not to leave either mine or my husbands side (which she never left his side)... and to have the nurses LEAVE ME ALONE! After giving birth, I just want to relax and TRY to sleep in that crappy uncomfortable bed than be woken up and bothered about trivial crap.

0
14 32

I had a birth plan with my daughter which was shared with our midwife and all the birthing center staff when i went into labor with her. I think we must have brought about 10 copies to the birthing center so everyone knew my wishes. I wanted an all natural drug free birth with no interventions unless medically needed which i did end up needing an iv and also had to get meds to slow my contractions down. My husband and midwife told me after i had our daughter that a nurse actually got fired because in my birth plan i stated that i did not want anyone to offer me pain meds and i guess a nurse was telling me that i needed an epidural which i was able to manage with out one. Everything went according to my birth plan and after 27 long hours of labor my beautiful amazing daughter was born very alert and healthy, My husband and I are expecting our second child in April and I am using the same birth plan as I did with our daughter and I am lucky enough to have the same midwife and using the same birthing center :) I know how i want things to go but also know that things dont always go that way and sometimes we as parents have to set aside how we want things and make sure our child's well being is top priority i have spoke with several women who no matter what would not allow medical intervention and sadly sometimes the end result is not a good one. to me a birth plan is a great thing to have set up but you must also have some room for changes :)

0
71 10

Yes. very thourough. And it did help me a lot. I had my son with midwives. So I had a back up hospital picked out just in case. People absolutely NOT allowed in the room for any reason. I did stick to it to. I put a lot of effort, creativity, and thought into my birth plan such as my son would exclusively breastfeed, he was no to leave me for any reason. I labored in the water. Its just better to have one. Once your in the stages of giving birth you cannot think reasonably.

0
291 0

I have a birth plan and a doula for my upcoming daughter's birth, but as I told her - you have to take things as they come because you never know what is going to happen. I can control certain things concerning the baby but when it comes to the actual labor itself, anything can happen to change the plan.

Main focus is to keep you and your baby stress free and have a good healthy birth.

0
0 7

"Big wheels keep on turning...love keep on burning." Just because others don't know all the details of your plan could make them think they have to know the rest. Everything can't be predicted or shouldn't be no matter how much we try to set in stone on our calanders. God sometimes blesses us when we least expect it and we have to be willing to embrace what he has given us.

0
0 36

My first child I had a plan, but was not asked about it. Just did as I was told to do.
This round I would like to have a say.
So I have made an appointment with a Doula to be present with me.
I am hard of hearing, stubburn about drugs, and not assertive.
My son and I were kept in the hospital for 16 days trying to get him to breastfeed.
I do not want to be in there for the same length of time. My husband lost out on a lot of first experiences with our son. And I believe that the depression got the best of me for feeling locked up in a hospital. My son lost weight from not breastfeeding. A tube was inserted into his nostril, and I had to feed him through the tube with my breast milk. He had no problem sucking, just staying awake and latching was his problem. We did the shock treatment of cold cloths and after all the stress, and long days, we finally went home. I had him on formula shortly after!!
So If anyone has any questions or suggestions on what I should be asking for please help.

0
236 33

My birth plan was simple, just go with the flow. I wanted to go as long as I could with out drugs, and as long as everything was okay with my son and I, I wanted to labor as long as I needed to without a c-section. Real simple to stick to. I didn't worry about music or lighting, or any of the small trivial things. I went into labor at 5am, feeling a little "off" was all I experienced. I took a shower, washed my hair and by 615am my contractions were 2 mins apart and Very intense. By the time we got to the hospital and in a room I was at 5cm. I got the IV and monitor on. 15 minutes later when I was begging for drugs, I was at 9cm and it was too late. When I started to push, the nurse put a squatting bar at the end of the bed and tied a sheet to the middle. I had a foot on each bar and pulled on the sheet in the middle to focus and delivered my son without drugs in 11minutes of pushing. He was born at 854am. I was in labor for only 4 hours start to finish. Having such a simple birth plan made it easy to stick to. You can't really deviate from your plan when your plan is to just go with the flow.

0
99 3

I had a birth plan for my two pregnancies and also one for this up coming birth in 4.5 weeks. The first plan was very hard to keep and I was strong armed by the nurse and Dr. Militarians with fear based techniques to do it their way. So disappointing because in the end all would have been fine with NO intervention. I was having a twin delivery. I was have no complications and they insisted on 2 interventions that I didn't want "just in case" Anyways,... at least I can say my babies are well and safe and not babies anymore as they are now 4 yrs old.

My next birth plan was followed to a tee with my midwife and it was spectacular. In hospital - no doctors/nurses & No interventions and a quick labour and delivery of 40 minutes long. Couldn't be better

This next birth plan is a home birth and I just can't wait. Same midwife and in the comfort of my own home so I guess it can get better!! :)

0
4 25

at the small rural hospital that I delivered my DS at did not look at the pile of paperwork I filled out FOR them much less a birthing plan... they did have a clue I was a first timer...they assume way too much. will be at anther small rural hospital this time around b/c of move so am hoping for a much better experience. So be aware of this.

0
14 20

I had a birth plan for all three of mine. At the hospital I delivered at there is a lady you can meet with ahead of time to set up a birth plan and they have it on record when you arrive in for delivery. She also gives a tour of the labor delivery and mother/baby unit if the mother wishes. In my birth plan I listed who would be there for delivery, and who would deliver, what meds I wanted when/if I wanted them. No C-section unless absolutely medically necessary. What birthing method I wanted and any options for easing labor pains that they provide- birth ball (big exercise ball, to sit and roll on), warm bath, walking around, for example. What I wanted during labor, like a mirror to see the baby coming (I did this with my first and loved seeing her little head wiggle with her trying to come out faster, motivation for pushing, but forgot to put it in the plan for the 2nd, didn't have time with the third), if you want music playing, of course who cuts the cord, and the placenta option, who comes in to greet the new baby and when. If you want to breast feed right away. Having them also put baby's footprints in the baby book if you have one, and I always asked for an extra set of ink pads so tha I could put the hand prints in later when baby was old enough to keep hands open a bit. (Note: if you do your baby's hand prints, do it while baby is sleeping, so much easier). I stuck to my birth plan, but with the third one, he came so fast we didn't have time for anything, not even the epidural I wanted as late as possible. They even skipped triage.

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17 0

I had one for both of my births. I spent hours going through all the options, which really helped me understand what I would be going through, and I discussed what options I'd prefer with my husband. I handed it over to my doctor for my 1st, and he carefully went through it and agreed. For my 2nd birth, everything happened too quick, and even though I had a birth plan, I forgot to pull it out. She was born quick, and most of the options described on the birth plan weren't necessary to discuss. I do recommend that every woman has some type of a birth plan when heading to the hospital. There's no reason to not know what's going on and to not know what your options and choices are - things happen so quickly (and painfully) that you may say yes to things you'll later regret you did.

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7 6

I think a birth plan is a good idea for your first baby, as it can help you feel more prepared for an event that you can't really prepare for, I had all sorts of ideas for my first birth, but it all went out the window as it was more overwhelming than I had anticipated, luckily my midwife was great and my birth was relatively quick, but not as fast as my second where I was only at the hospital for about 10 mins before she was born. Any plans I could have for my third would have been useless, as I still had the same midwife I didn't feel I needed to discuss them with her as we had such a rapport by that stage, unfortunately, she wasn't able to be at my sons birth and I had her backup who I didn't know, and some things didn't go they way I would have liked, and I was too tired to assert myself but he arrived safe and healthy which is the main thing!
Now being pregnant with my 4th child and having a new midwife I am going to make sure I have a talk with her about how I would like things to go which for me is pretty simple and goes something like this;
I would like to labour at home and if I decide to go to the maternity unit (instead of having at home) to do that as late as possible
I don't want any drugs or an epidural or a caesarean unless absolutely necessary (not having needed them for my last 3 ) nor do I want "help" dilating. I would like to be upright while birthing.
I would like it to just be myself, my husband and my midwife present.
hubby can cut the cord if he wishes and I don't want to keep the placenta.
now if only the actual event could be so easy as writing it down...... but as hard as it is it is only for one day and the result is worth it :D

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