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THE FIRST CALL FROM MY MIDWIFE.

July 24, 2018

Don’t get me wrong, generally speaking I LOVE midwives. I love their support, I love their passion and the fact that they are so undervalued really grinds on me.

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However, when I received a phone call from a local midwife to get a date in the diary for my booking in appointment, one of her first questions to me was “What hospital would you like to give birth in?”

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I’m sorry, what? What HOSPITAL would I like to give birth in? There it is. Boom! The seed has been planted from our very first conversation that I should be choosing a hospital setting to birth my baby in. Luckily, I already know there are other options but what about all the other mums that don’t know this and are automatically pointed in the direction of a medical environment from the get go?

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I respectfully corrected her and let her know that I will be planning a home birth for this baby, a decision both my husband and I feel very confident with, to which she replied “Oh…yes…that’s absolutely fine.”

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If it is absolutely fine, then surely that same question could’ve been rephrased as “Where would you like to give birth?”

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With my first pregnancy I wouldn’t have noticed this and wouldn’t have seen a problem with the question. However now I’m noticing that the language being used is almost making decisions for the mothers without them even noticing it.

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So, at my booking in appointment the same question was asked again “what hospital would you like to give birth in?” Again, I replied with the fact that we will be planning a home birth, and the midwives response was…

“A home birth. Well you are definitely in the right area for some great support regarding your home birth. We have a really fantastic team of community midwives who you will receive amazing care from.”

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Now that is music to my ears and so refreshing to hear. I now know that Sevenoaks promotes home births and has an awesome team of community midwives. Why can’t all expectant mums know this information from the first phone call? I truly believe that having this conversation half way through a pregnancy would not have the same results regarding a mums confidence in place of birth, as it would having the conversation at 6/8 weeks of pregnancy. The thought process is more likely to be ‘My midwife is now discussing place of birth with me halfway through my pregnancy, but I always thought it was best to give birth in hospital.’

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Choosing where to have your baby is a decision that you can change right up until you are in labour. If you plan a hospital birth but decide when you are in labour to stay at home that is fine. If you plan a home birth and decide you would rather go into hospital, that is fine too. However, knowing your options from the beginning and knowing medical intervention stats for birthing at home, birth centre, MLU and CLU will make your decision easier. I think it is of the upmost importance to be in the know. Only you know where you will feel most safe and most supported. The decision is totally yours.

 

 

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