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Argument with husband wanting to be sole birth support


62 replies to this topic

#1 Neats09

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:33 PM

I’m not sure what I’m after here. Other stories? Support? Reassurance maybe?

My husband (DH) and I (currently 28w with No2) were watching ‘one born every min’ and he turned to me and said ‘I wouldn’t stand for your mother to be the room. I should be the sole support’.

He has said this before, and was my sole support for DD1, however his tone and directness shocked me. Shouldn’t he ask what I need/want?

At about the same time that I started going into a very long labour for DD1, DH become ill with a stomach bug and was unwell throughout birth. I mean he said he was unwell, I didn’t see him go to the toilet too much more than usual. And this has distressed me ever since because I felt I couldn’t ‘call’ on him fully because I was also worrying about him the whole time.
He believes he tried his best. And I argued that it doesn’t matter, I need a backup, or need to also have my sister in the room. My sister is also a midwife and his fear is that he will be pushed to the corner of the room and told to butt out.

This argument is doing my head in. I’m exhausted enough without having to try to make him understand this isn’t about him at all. That maybe, I’d like a female in the room, one that understands uteruses.

I tried last pregnancy, but he won’t read anything in preparation. He came to antenatal classes but won’t engage in actually learning about how to be a support person. And I don’t feel he knows enough about birth and risks vs too much intervention to advocate for my preferences. I feel he would follow the medical team blindly.

On top of it all, I have to start admitting I have a type of Medical Phobia. And after a stalling labour, so induction after waters broke, then epidural, then forceps and episiotomy, I’m more scared than last time.

Any insights? Am I being irrational about his attitude??

#2 Ellie bean

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:35 PM

I’d be telling him “when you give birth YOU can pick the support, my body my choice.” He’s being a total idiot.
efs

Edited by Ellie bean, 05 May 2019 - 09:35 PM.


#3 Lou-bags

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:45 PM

He was with you as your sole support during labour and the birth of a vulnerable newborn baby with GASTRO? Wtf was he thinking?

I think you know you’re not being unreasonable. Unless your mum and sister are completely insensitive and pushy, and your DH is unable to be assertive with them, he had no reason whatsoever to have anything to say about who you’d like to support you. And even then... it’s YOUR body, your birth.

He sounds incredibly selfish and I have no idea how you can get it through to him.

#4 cvbn

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:49 PM

I had only my DH, except for number 4, when I wasn't overly fond of my OBGYN so I asked my best friend to come in too.

I didn't even ask DH, my body.

It meant they could both have a kip, I labour long, usually 24 hours +.

He is being a twonk.

#5 Etta

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:51 PM

My sister was at my DS's birth as well as DP. I wanted her there anyway, but an additional reason was that if the baby and I were separated I would want DP to stay with the baby and not worry about me. My sister would stay with me. That was in my birth plan and it was very important to me. I was probably hormonal and not wanting there to be any chance of my baby being swapped with someone else's, but it is still a strong case that you could make.

#6 Paddlepop

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:53 PM

No, you're not being irrational. He's being a selfish d*ck.

It's your body and you're the one giving birth. You get to have your choice of support people with you. If you want your sister with you then ask her to be with you. If he wants to have a sulk then he can leave the room and come back when he realises that giving birth is not about him. You need someone who will advocate for you if needed, and according to what you would want. If you can be confident that you have an advocate you can trust then it might help to ease some of your fears about giving birth.

Please talk to your medical team about your fears about giving birth again. They should be able to arrange for you to speak to someone who can help you to deal with your fears and reassure you.

#7 cabbage88

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:57 PM

We did calm birth course recently together and I feel like the only person I need is him, especially after doing that together.  Maybe doing something like this together would help- especially if you have fears about intervention, because they address all of that instead of pretending it doesn't happen and prepare you for coping with needing intervention.
I've mentioned having my mum there, but not as support just because it's a special moment. But she seriously stresses out my hubby (and me at times) and he was really against it. But my sister will be there, but she's so calm and quiet and she's not really there for me but for her to see her niece come in to the world. Hubby isn't at all bothered with that because he knows his role and knows he will be great at it, as do I.
I wonder if maybe your hubby felt more prepared to support you he wouldn't feel so threatened. But it's not his call to make- that space is yours not his. If he's not going to address things to be a better support tough luck to him.

#8 Neats09

Posted 05 May 2019 - 09:57 PM

Thank you all. I thought he was being a bit of a t*at.
But yeh, have no idea how to help him see my point of view as the one giving birth. I think I might have to try a psychologist I know of to help us talk it through.

#9 Noodlez

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:19 PM

My DH wasn’t there for either of my two. I had my mum and Aunty there for both, they understood what I was going through DH would have been no help.

#10 Prancer is coming

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:19 PM

I don’t think he is necessarily being a t*at.  He wants to be totally involved in the birth of his child and not share the moment with anyone outside immediate family.  He may have strong emotions when the baby is being born or certain things we wants to do as your support person and may not feel fully able to be himself with your family there.

However, your need to be supported totally trumps this and you should be able to have who you want at the birth.  My DH was a bit crappy as a support person (yrs, I know he was probably tired in the middle of the night after a big week at work, but suck it up and be alert rather than having a nap) and would not have stood up to my medical team at all, but I don’t think he necessarily knew he was crappy, if that makes sense.  Maybe focus on the negative aspects of your last birth meaning you would like someone with a medical background with you.  And outline what you want him to do and her role so he knows/feels he has the most important job.

#11 amaza

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:24 PM

Your body, your birth, your choice.

However, I would try to understand and discuss his fears around being pushed away at a time that is also very special to him. Are they pushy? Would they shut him out? Why does he think that?

Could you maybe talk to him about having them in there but then asking your sister/mother to step back once baby is born so you two can have those first moments together (half hour or so) before mum/sister can step back in to then meet baby?

Ultimately it is your choice and he isn't actually a requirement for the birth but maybe a compromise would keep you both satisfied that you are both going to get a good experience.

#12 bakesgirls

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:37 PM

I believe it's your body and your choice and you get ultimate and final say.

In saying that though, and I understand my opinion may not be popular, -it's also his experience too. It's also the birth of his child, and cannot be repeated if he's left out, or feels like he can't show emotion or whatever his reasoning is. I can understand him not wanting to share the moment with anyone else but you, because it is a special moment and time.

I'm probably a bit bias though. I only had my exH and DF in the room for the birth of my children. I really felt for my DF when he told me that his ex wife had others in the room and he was last to hold both of his kids with her and was generally made to feel useless and unwanted by her mother and sister who were there.

Can you tell him that unless he takes an interest in learning how to be the support person you need, then you will have whoever you deem necessary? If he refuses then have who you want and bugger him. But if he agrees and actually educates himself, then isn't he meeting your needs and being what you need him to be at that time?

#13 seayork2002

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:40 PM

I had my mum and my husband it was my husband's baby not my mum's so if he had an issue she would not have been there.

#14 ipsee

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:48 PM

You could say that you want to prepare your sister to come along in case he is unwell/unavailable, and soften him up to her being there.

A calmbirth course for the two of you is a very good idea.

#15 DebbieDoesSanta

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:49 PM

View Postseayork2002, on 05 May 2019 - 10:40 PM, said:

I had my mum and my husband it was my husband's baby not my mum's so if he had an issue she would not have been there.

Just curious, though, what if you had issues about your mum not being there?

#16 seayork2002

Posted 05 May 2019 - 10:52 PM

View PostDebbieDoesSanta, on 05 May 2019 - 10:49 PM, said:



Just curious, though, what if you had issues about your mum not being there?

I have no idea, my son is half my husband's sure it was great my mum was there but if it wasn't for my husband I would have not been in the situation in the first place. As long as the midwife was there that is all I had strong feelings about

#17 Ozquoll

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:07 PM

I never understand what all the fuss is about “being there for the birth” - I would have quite liked NOT to be there for the birth myself. I didn’t have anyone (except the midwives) in the room with me, by choice.

#18 seayork2002

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:09 PM

View PostOzquoll, on 05 May 2019 - 11:07 PM, said:

I never understand what all the fuss is about “being there for the birth” - I would have quite liked NOT to be there for the birth myself. I didn’t have anyone (except the midwives) in the room with me, by choice.

DH asked me if he wanted to see what he was helping with at my bottom end   I may have swore for the first time in saying no.

I had an epidural so was fine being there but did not want to see it!

#19 Oriental lily

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:16 PM

My side of the family are panic merchants . Anxiety is our middle name , if I had insisted my mum or my three sisters had attended any of my births I know DH would have hated it . So it was something that was never going to happen .

Let’s be realistic, in-laws are often not easy .

Birth is a time of very heightened emotion .

For you op this might mean the loving support of your mum and sister .

For your DH it’s an extremely emotional day having to deal also with the ‘inlaws’ who he probably needs to grit his teeth at even the best of times .

Threads on EB at Christmas makes is crystal clear that blending of family’s is no smooth ride .

It’s hard though because your needs are deffinetly a bigger priority so I do think he should suck it up but maybe you could negotiate it a bit .  Maybe they could support in shifts with you and your DH being on your own when baby comes .

#20 aace

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:20 PM

He is being completely unreasonable. I am so sick of women having to placate men's feelings about what are essentially women's issues. Why is it your role to talk him through why you would like your sister there and that he is so shut down to communication about the topic that you need to get a psychologist in to try and get him to see your point of view? Can you imagine if he was trying as hard to understand you? You wouldn't have to make this post. You would be able to solve this amongst yourself. If he is worried about your sister taking over then he should use his words to express his worry and then you can use your words to reassure him that your sister will step back once the baby is born so you can have some couple time or whatever.

#21 DebbieDoesSanta

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:23 PM

View Postseayork2002, on 05 May 2019 - 10:52 PM, said:

I have no idea, my son is half my husband's sure it was great my mum was there but if it wasn't for my husband I would have not been in the situation in the first place. As long as the midwife was there that is all I had strong feelings about

I understand that, but when it comes to medical autonomy, her midwife would also have stronger feelings about advocating for the OP's needs. Her level of control is negotiated with her and her care team, not her, her husband and her care team.

Going by that notion, if a woman is in labour and is no longer in a relationship with her baby's father, should she just suck it up and invite him in because "half of the baby" is his?

Alarming. :no2:

Edited by DebbieDoesSanta, 05 May 2019 - 11:26 PM.


#22 Oriental lily

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:25 PM

Op have you asked if he really wants to be there ?

#23 bakesgirls

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:32 PM

View PostDebbieDoesSanta, on 05 May 2019 - 11:23 PM, said:


Going by that notion, if a woman is in labour and is no longer in a relationship with her baby's father, should she just suck it up and invite him in because "half of the baby" is his?

Alarming. :no2:

In this situation, I would say no. The father would only be welcome in if the mother wants him there. They are not in a relationship and the woman does not owe the father a prime view of the birth, just notification of the child's birth.

In this situation the OP is talking about, they are together, he is involved and it's clearly affecting their relationship right now because they both have different views on it. I would say they both need to work out what they want to do as a team.

#24 DebbieDoesSanta

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:46 PM

View Postbakesgirls, on 05 May 2019 - 11:32 PM, said:

In this situation, I would say no. The father would only be welcome in if the mother wants him there. They are not in a relationship and the woman does not owe the father a prime view of the birth, just notification of the child's birth.

In this situation the OP is talking about, they are together, he is involved and it's clearly affecting their relationship right now because they both have different views on it. I would say they both need to work out what they want to do as a team.

He's not playing as a team. A team works together for the best outcome. The best outcome at birth is a woman who feels confident, empowered and has as much control and autonomy as possible.

#25 Ellie bean

Posted 05 May 2019 - 11:47 PM

View PostDebbieDoesSanta, on 05 May 2019 - 11:23 PM, said:



I understand that, but when it comes to medical autonomy, her midwife would also have stronger feelings about advocating for the OP's needs. Her level of control is negotiated with her and her care team, not her, her husband and her care team.

Going by that notion, if a woman is in labour and is no longer in a relationship with her baby's father, should she just suck it up and invite him in because "half of the baby" is his?

Alarming. :no2:
Im pretty sure I actually remember seayork saying yes, the father should be there, in a thread with exactly that scenario



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