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Is home birth for you?

by Jennifer Muirhead (follow)
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Parenting (216)      Birth (19)      Home Birth (2)     

birth pool, home birth, birth, water birth, birth at home
An inflatable birth pool set up for a home water birth.

When you're having a baby people will often ask you which hospital you're planning to give birth at, and whether you are going public or private. There is another option you may not have considered, which is home birth with an independent midwife.

Despite what some people erroneously believe, home birth is legal in Australia. Some independent midwives are even medicare eligible. They are highly qualified, experienced professionals who work hard to give mothers and babies the care they deserve.

Women choose home birth for many reasons. You might have had a traumatic previous hospital birth experience. You might want to have your older children present at the birth, which may be easier to arrange at home. Perhaps you don't like the idea of having a vulnerable newborn in a building full of sick people. Or you may just want to have the same midwife throughout your prenatal care, the birth and postnatal care instead of a stranger you meet on the day.

Of course home birth is not for everybody. Some women are considered high risk due to pre-existing medical conditions, complications during pregnancy or the position of the baby. Some women simply find the idea of birth at home scary.

What do you think? Is home birth for you? If so, why? If not, why not?

#Home Birth
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Top Answers
Great question. If you want to give birth in the comfort and privacy of your own domain, then that's fine. Some people don't like the white, clinical hospital feel.
Personally, I would feel uncomfortable having a home birth. There are many things that could go wrong and if it does, chances are you'll end up at the hospital anyway.
After 2 horrible hospital hospital births one resulting in me almost loosing my baby and one leaving me with permenant back problems I chose to have a baby with number 3 and 4 and it was the best decision I ever made.
I was respected and well educated and informed the whole way and was booked into a hospital in case of transfer.
With a pregnancy that is free of complications and the mother is receiving care from someone she trusts and there is a plan b then yes home birth is a great choice and one I would do again and again if I was to have more children.
I did have a home birth with my second baby and if I had another baby I'd do the same thing again. It was a wonderful, peaceful experience, and I got to have some privacy and time alone with my baby straight away. My daughter was able to be there to see her brother born. I think it helped her bond with him right away rather than be jealous of him. I loved the in-home care I got with my midwife, who was fantastic. It was great having the support of someone I actually got to know and trust who knew what she was doing. It was also a lot easier than dragging a pre-schooler along to a hospital for pre-natal appointments.

We were prepared to transfer to hospital if it became necessary. It's a good idea for any pregnant woman to be prepared to give birth at home just in case it happens that way by accident. It's not like in the movies, but it can happen fast, especially if it's not your first baby. My son was in such a hurry to be born I think if we'd been planning on going to hospital he'd have arrived in the car. I caught him myself and it would have been scary if I hadn't considered that option beforehand and been mentally prepared for it and had some idea what to do (or more importantly what not to do, like don't pull on anything!)
No. I wouldn't want there to be no medical assistance on hand (ie equipment) should a life threatening situation occur. I would rather have a bad experience myself, than risk losing the baby. Ultimately, the birth experience is a fraction of your lifetime, just a blink of the eye - the child, is hopefully a longtime companion
I would love to have a home birth but am afraid that if something went wrong, Baby and I wouldn't be able to receive the appropriate care. I've seen many videos in which women birth at home and things have gone smoothly. Surrounded by family and friends, these women are comfortable and able to share the miracle of birth with those closest to them in familiar surrounds. If someone could guarantee our wellbeing, I would do it in a heartbeat.
by Vee
My first two I felt I wanted to be in the hospital (it was a low risk, low intervention, midwife-led model). It was all very ho hum and ordinary, that for number three the hospital was only a back up plan.

I also had the addition caveat that my tendency was fast birth and with number 3 we had moved and were over an hour from the hospital. I did not wish to risk a dramatic roadside birth, it would have been folly not to prepare for a fast birth. In preparing for a fast birth, I became very comfortable with staying home even if it was not so fast. But if at any point I was not comfortable, I had an excellent care provider at the hospital. I covered my bases.

Home birth is a valid and important option, that should be protected. Even if only a small percentage of women choose it.
Whatever's best for baby, firstly, then mother.

I wouldn't consider 'home birth' whatsoever! Way TOO much can go wrong!

At least a Hospital has ICU, & neo-natal wards. Midwives at home DON'T!
With any birth things can go radically wrong and very quickly. So no, I wouldn't have a home birth and risk the life of my baby. I have had five children and know that within moments, a seemingly normal birth can become dire.

Don't know. My mother had 5 home births, starting in 1935 and ending in 1947. She had only home births because she didn't trust hospitals and the staff in hospitals. She thought both the nursing staff and the medical staff were very unhygienic. Three of her births were instrument births. I only had 1 child, born in a hospital and I can't wrap anyone for great service in that instance.
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