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Kate

Good luck to you Kristen! I'm now done having my children, but I have a few pregnant friends that may be interested in your research - I'll pass it on. Of course my first son (who ended up being over 9 lbs) was a week late, so I had to be induced, and my twins were positioned so that a c-section was required - so maybe it's better that I never read up on the risk involved in hospital births... As with all subjects that women debate - emotions can run high and judgmental/defensive reactions usually throw related online discussion into virtual cat fighting. So it will be nice to get objective information about homebirth from someone that originally thought hospital deliver was the way to go. I look forward to hearing more!

Carrie Ann

I am in no way opposed to home births; I think for certain women under certain circumstances, a home birth is not only the way to go, but even the better choice. However, if a friend of mine wanted a home birth for their FIRST child, I would be very, very hesitant to encourage that. With my first son, I planned to have all natural childbirth in a birthing center attached to a hospital. Because of a pregnancy complication, I had to be induced but I still chose no epidural. Then my son got terribly stuck in the birth canal because of my small pelvis (who could have known?) and I had to have an emergency c-section. Had I been at home, being rushed to the hospital in an ambulance would have only made a scary situation even more frightening. Anything can happen in a birth, but your FIRST birth will certainly give indications to what your next births will be like. My personal opinion is that hospitals are the safest bet for the safest birth until you are more aware of how you will respond to labor and delivery. Those who are pro-home births rarely discuss possible complications and what happens if something goes wrong. I hope your research includes that.

Kate

There was a recent exchange in my mothers of multiples group regarding home birth (can you believe it - at the time I thought that this was the height of irresponsibility for the sake of personal preference). Apparently two mothers in the group (for Fairfax, VA) have had successful twin home births. I hate to judge anyone (even based on my own experience) since contrary to my own belief, I am in fact not always the authority on what I'm discussing...So I really do try to keep an open mind and stick to the practical issues. My question to the mother thinking of having her twins at home was whether she lived in close proximity to a good hospital. Her answer was yes and that this played a major role in her considering a home birth. SO in light of Carrie Ann's comments - Kristen, do you live near a hospital where you could get immediate help if necessary? If not, maybe you should talk to the closest hospital and get information on ambulance arrival time, see if they have any history on deliveries with complications that started out at home due to labor progressing too quickly (I seriously doubt hospitals will waste time talking to you about home birth since they have a strong bias). OR maybe you will cover all of this in your future posts - and in that case this comment is totally irrelevant!

Kirsten

Birth is a very touchy issue and I hope to be presenting a positive view of an alternative and encouraging women to research whatever type of birth they want, rather than being judgmental. Anyone who has been pregnant has probably dealt with birth fears and has heard of (or had their own!) bad experience. Safety is a huge concern! There is a post coming about that, but I don't know if it gets into all the specifics of the comments so I thought I'd chime in. Carrie Ann, that's a great point about the first births. Many doctors include first-time mothers in a higher-risk category because they have an "untried pelvis." I spoke with my midwife about this when I was thinking about home birth, and while she does take that into consideration, it's not something that would rule a woman out. We do live less than five minutes from a hospital, where my midwife has a doctor she works with if need be. I definitely have thought through and discussed and prayed about possible complications. Home birth is my ideal plan, and I do feel very safe and secure in that decision, but birth is a wild ride that you can plan your best for, and then go where it takes you! A backup plan is must when planning a home birth, as is thinking through the best- and worst-case scenarios. I'll have to check back in AFTER birth and share the story of whatever happens! :)

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