L&D nurses? Are you all for natural births?

  1. Ok after delivering 2 in a hospital and having an aweful experience with the L&D nurses my first... and a much better with my 2nd (LOL one nurse was a little resistant but did good )

    Anyways how open are you to 100% natural births?

    I mean my DS was a natural birth but met with a lot of resistance from my L&D nurse. With my first my nurse was down right mean about me wanting a natural birth.

    With my son my nurse was the "natural birth specialist" but yet she wasn't. Every fwe min was trying to do EFM with every contraction, told me no about everything I requested. (I wanted to push squatting on floor, she said no, lol i ignored her and just did it) She wanted me in bed.. lol OB didn't care he said hang upside down if I wanted.. it was only the nurse.

    She and my midwife who was with me as a doula really butted heads. Told me no wash cloth on perineum while pushing (LOL i thought that felt great! no need for that thing washcloth on the forehead!). Kept wanting me to put on gown vs letting me run butt naked or wear my own clothes (skirt and bra).

    With my first the nurse was down right aweful. Told me to "get a grip" working thru a very fast labor/transition (3hours) as a first time mom. Came in every 5-10 min asking me if I was ready for epidural yet...refused to give me IV meds when requested or zofran (lots of puking)

    Is this the norm? How do all of you feel you fit in with natural births or do you not like them? Love them? Think they are more or less work? What are your thoughts on mothers with birthplans for natural births or wanting one? Anyone here never even seen a natural or drug/intervention free birth?

    both times my postpartum nurses both times were fabulous.
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  2. 46 Comments

  3. by   sbenning5
    I'm not an L&D nurse yet but I just had to reply.

    Your first nurse sounds terrible! Holy Cow - I'm sorry you had to deal with that.

    When I become an L&D nurse I hope that I can let the laboring mother have whatever kind of birth she wants. As long as both mother and baby are safe & healthy. All your requests were completely reasonable and should have been honored.

    JMHO
  4. by   almostfearless
    Agreed- ALSO not a nurse yet-- I am also not a mom yet. I've been terrified for years of giving birth, but I watched this documentary "The Business of Being Born", and it calmed a LOT of my fears, and now I've gone from scared spitless, to wanting a natural birth myself.
  5. by   almostfearless
    P.S., Netflix is awesome =) I never would have rented that if it weren't for unlimited movies per month. =)
  6. by   hoppermom3
    I have been an L&D nurse for a little over 2 years, and I LOVE being in on natural births. It is so rewarding as a nurse to be able to provide the support mom needs to accomplish her goals.
    Natural childbirth does tend to take more of my time, but that is why I am here. I would much rather be at bedside providing massage, breathing assistance, positioning suggestions, etc... than to be sitting there dutifully recording q15 min vitals while mom sleeps through labor.
    Also, the babies tend to transition quicker and breastfeed much better after a natural childbirth.
    That said, while I LOVE natural childbirth, it is mom's choice and if the epidural is what she wants, I wil support her in that.
  7. by   MIcrunchyRN
    Quote from TemperTantrum
    Agreed- ALSO not a nurse yet-- I am also not a mom yet. I've been terrified for years of giving birth, but I watched this documentary "The Business of Being Born", and it calmed a LOT of my fears, and now I've gone from scared spitless, to wanting a natural birth myself.
    LOVED that documentary. Would have had homebirth, but other politics got in the way. Either way we had a wonderful experience the 2nd time around.

    I really want to be an L&D nurse yet I'm afraid my views would get in the way. There is so much intervention that goes on that isn't necessary.. yet so much is truely needed. I wouldn't want to hate my job because of my views nor would I want to end up "one of those nurses" who I hated because of my views.

    LOL granted with my 2nd the nurse I had wasn't that bad. She learned really quickly :chuckle when she was doing something that was bothering me. (granted at that point in labor no nurse would have been my friend...)
    She got swatted at a few times but learned quickly to prepare me before coming at me with the fetal heart rate monitor. Something about transition trying my hardest not to push wasn't the exact moment to interrupt me to listen to baby... especially when I was telling her to just give me a minute.

    Altho big from L&D nurses I bet you guys catch a lot of flack from patients, families lol not to mention us oddballs wanting natural births who swat at you for getting to close.. and your just doing your job. You also must be very fast dodging feet while checking someone at a 10 wanting to push and a contraction starts.. lol ...
  8. by   UNC_nurseL&D
    I have one year experience in L&D. I am a huge fan of natural births, especially when the mama is prepared for it. A lot of Latina moms are especially fabulous at natural births. I will say though, I have seen mama's come in who really want that natural birth, but are just so TIGHT, with nerves and fear and tension. I had a mom like this and nothing I (a DONA trained doula as well as RN) or her doula could do to make her relax. And her cervix just wasn't changing. She finally asked for an epidural. She relaxed with the epidural and the baby was out in 3 hrs (after 10 of natural labor). I am by no means an advocate of the epidural, I see a lot more of babies getting put into OP or transverse positions and not being able to get out of them because of the lack of mobility of the mom, but they can be a useful tool when used properly.
    Oh, and nurses that ask their patients if they want an epidural every 5 min are a huge pet peave of mine. My style is, find out if the mom is going to want pain meds, if so I talk to them about their options before they are in labor (if possible) and I don't bring it up again until they do.
    Lazy nurses are the ones who don't like natural labor because it requires so much support. but guess what...you are a LABOR nurse, not a sit-at-the-desk-and-gossip/chart nurse.
  9. by   christine_chapel
    I am totally all for natural births!

    Having said that, an unprepared mother trying to do a natural birth, sobbing as though her heart would break during each contraction, fighting them ("No, no, no, I can't do another one!") and unable to work with her support people to find a way to relax and focus and make things work - she's not going to have much success. (She was a first time mom who so wanted a natural birth, but was not well prepared. Despite my best efforts, tub, walking, leaning, resting on her side, she labored more than 12 hours stuck at 3-4 cm, before finally agreeing to an epidural - and baby was out less than 3 hours later.)

    When you prepare for natural birth in a natural way, by believing that birth is normal and not fraught with danger, then you will do wonderfully. When you are prepared by our reality-show society, where the scary and rare stuff is the stuff that gets broadcasted into everyone's homes, you are going to have to do some work to overcome it.

    Stepping off soap box now... and maybe on to another one...

    I hate having to interrupt a naturally laboring mom as often as I do to obtain fetal heart tones, but in a way my hands are tied due to policy. We simply have to check on baby every so often, and believe it or not time really has passed even though a mom is in transition/laborland. These "interruptions" can be done gently and gradually, though, no need to be abrupt and disturb the mom significantly.

    You will have some nurses, though, who think that a quieter laboring mom is a happier laboring mom, and will encourage drugs for that reason. You will have others who feel pressured by the docs, and encourage drugs and pushing only in semi-sitting for that reason.
  10. by   touchhealth
    My mother had all three of us at home. For my littlest brother (who was born when I was 21 after mom remarried) she asked me to be her labor coach and it was an underwater birth which was AMAZING. I was in awe watching my mom go through this process with so much strength and presence. She danced through contractions, laughed and cried, and it was just spectacular and inspiring. It helped me feel a lot less afraid about birth.

    A year later, another friend of mine asked if I would be her labor coach since the father had run out on her. She was interested in going the natural route philosophically, but didn't really prepare herself for it and ended up running to the hospital for pain meds pretty immediately. Though I supported her choices, I found this it to be one of the most horrifying experiences: I literally watched them pry her open when the babies head was barely crowning, and then rip that baby out before his shoulders turned...Even with the epidural she was screaming so loud, and bleeding so much from the 4th degree tear that they rushed some more and immediately pulled the placenta out by the umbilical cord! (think: rapid hand-over-hand motion). More massive bleeding...so they wheeled her away and she endured 4+ hours of surgery! Very traumatic. I think they were in a rush to get the baby out 'cause she was right near the 24hr mark...but it was AWEFUL. I know that everyone did what they could with the tools and training they had, but what they did to her didn't seem right. :angryfire

    Natural vs. Medical births really do come down to how much control you want over your body and the process. I personally want as much control over my body as possible. I'm not going to be unreasonable about it, but if I can take it I'm going natural for sure!
  11. by   landonsles
    Quote from MIcrunchyRN
    She got swatted at a few times...You also must be very fast dodging feet while checking someone at a 10 wanting to push and a contraction starts.. lol ...
    I don't care if a woman is in the throes of labor...no nurse deserves to be "swatted at" or kicked for doing his/her job. That being said, I do prepare my pts for whatever task I am about to do and will (usually--unless baby is in trouble) wait for a contraction to be over or for them to be ready before I do anything.

    I am continually amazed at the strength and control that a lot of women having a natural birth exhibit!
  12. by   ElvishDNP
    All for natural birth here and wish more people here would subscribe to the pregnancy/birth-as-normal idea.
  13. by   Pinkster
    Quote from UNC_nurseL&D
    Oh, and nurses that ask their patients if they want an epidural every 5 min are a huge pet peave of mine. My style is, find out if the mom is going to want pain meds, if so I talk to them about their options before they are in labor (if possible) and I don't bring it up again until they do.
    Lazy nurses are the ones who don't like natural labor because it requires so much support. but guess what...you are a LABOR nurse, not a sit-at-the-desk-and-gossip/chart nurse.
    At the hospital I gave birth at, you HAD to have a consultation with the anastesilogist if you WANTED to have an epidural both had to sign a document stating the patient understood the risks, and side effects and such. I thought that was important and more places should do this.

    The more educated the mother is about what is/could be happening to her the better, so she can have the birth that is right for her and her baby.

    But that being said I'm all for as natural as possible Births. I'm not a nurse yet but as long as it is safe for the mother and baby, the mother should have what ever kind of birth she wishes.

    Birth is a Natural thing, and it is that way it is for a reason.

    I'm sorry you had such a hard time delivering your babies, OUTSIDE of the Normal pain and discomfort.
  14. by   jhhrn68
    I would be all in favor of a natural birth. I had a home birth with my second child and it was fantastic. However, where I practice, the pts. are not well-informed and not prepared. None of the OB's would be supportive of a natural birth -too afraid of lawsuits or something. So I assume that the women who are educated and prepared and want a natural birth travel elsewhere for delivery. You can't even take LaMaze classes in this county. I would love to see a midwife around here. But you have to be really prepared in order to have a natural birth and you have to have a good coach.

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