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Thread: People present at the birth and afterawrds

  1. #1

    Default People present at the birth and afterawrds

    I'm not very much pregnant yet but I have been thinking about how I might want to deal with people when it comes to the birth and afterwards.

    I am having feelings about not having anyone there at all except my husband for the first 24 hours.

    There are some people in my family who are likely to feel extremely put out by this request - but I feel that it is important for me to regain myself after the experience of birthing the baby and to have that forst 24 hours of quiet time without being visited by 100 people on the first day.

    Do you think that if I asked my family not to come for 24 hours it would be too much?

    i think that I just want to set the ground rules now so that there isn't anyone thinking they will get to be there for the birth when they wont be.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Country Victoria


    hun... its YOUR baby and YOUR decision. im only having DP with me right through labour and birth as i think its something we should experience together not my whole family. My mum and DP's parents will be called when i go into labour and we have told them they are more than welcome to wait in the waiting room until bub is here. That is after i have a shower..have my first breastfeed etc. If they dont want to stay thats not my problem. Stick by what u want and dont worry about what other people say.


  3. #3


    i think that what ever you want is a totally reasonable request !! tell them its your child your birth and you have it planned that you only want your DH there ...

    my dad said to me when i was about to have ds was to call him when i went into labour and he will wait at the hosp till he was born ..... ah... no thanks .... all these people wanted to be there , i just said no please give me some time ....

    as for visiting hours ppl will come regarudless of what you want , so i think you have to be very firm about what you want , the only ppl who visted me were immedeate (sp) family for the first 2 days ...

    make sure dh is on the same page as you so your wires dont getr crossed and he can put across your wishes ...

    i am very funny when it comes to my personal space .... i am getting nervous about dds birth , i dont even want a midwife or doctor there breathing down my neck ... but thats another storty

  4. #4


    It is your choice!
    And a very good i think !

    We lived away from family and i set a 6 week rule. No visitors for 6 weeks (as our house would be the hotel and i needed time to get into routine).

    I didnt mind the odd friend visiting as i was extremely bored in hospital!

    And we didnt tell anyone i was in labour - only once bub was born to stop people from just showing up!

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Sunshine Coast


    Definitely set the ground rules now before people start getting ideas about waiting outside the delivery room etc. If necessary you can soften the blow by saying that if you feel fantastic and can't wait to show the baby off you'll revise your stance (but of course that's just your Get Out of Jail Free card).

    You can also ask the midwives to act as bouncers if necessary.

    You may also want to consider not telling anyone you are in labour if you think there is a risk people will show up anyway. And you may also want to consider whether or not you want anyone around when you first get home (ie do you just want it to be you and your DH and the baby for the first day as a brand new family - that's what DH and I wanted) - in case everyone descends on you as soon as you get home.

    Just make sure you and your DH show a united front on this one so nobody can "get around you" IYKWIM.

    Waiting 24 hours is a great idea. So many first time mums I know have complained that they were so inundated with visitors they felt that they got hardly any time alone with their newborn, felt under pressure to finish breastfeeding before visiting hours started. Those first few hours are so precious and you will never get them back. It's not going to kill anyone to wait a few hours before they get to cuddle the baby.

    Sorry - I've worded this a bit strongly I think...please understand I am coming from a "once bitten, twice shy" perspective LOL.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Springvale South, Melbourne


    i totally agree, its YOUR choice. You have to do what sits right with you.

    My mother wanted to be in the birth with way, my MIL wanted to wait in the waiting room, no way. I was very clear from the start that it was a journey that DH and I were to go through without any pressure or expectations from anyone else. We called immeadiate family after the birth and said that they could come visit and am glad that thats what we decided on, because it would have been too much with more people. Its funny because one thing I do remember was my mum said to me first off....why didnt you call me??? i wanted to come whatch! I said no that it was a private thing and that was the last of it. Shes asked me again with this pregnancy and I have said no, but luckily I have dd for her to look after Good luck, make it loud and clear what you want, people will get over it.

  7. #7
    SugarDust Guest


    for my past to births i have had my mum and DP there and i will be doing the same again!

    It is your choice!

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jul 2007


    Hiya there Andjxx.

    Like you, I had a lot of apprehension about others being present at my DS' birth - and soon afterwards - this article Saying 'No' to Unwanted Birth Support People is a great resource - so take a read!

    Personally, I didn't want any visitors in hospital whatsoever - in the end I was glad that I had them.
    I admit, I wish I'd had the first 24 hours alone - as it is quite exhilarating and something to get used to, but once I got home I wanted people out of my face.

    Remember that it is your birth, your baby, & your parenting style - people are not going to stop commenting and telling you what to do any time soon so your birth and post birth visitors preferences is a good start to standing up to them.

    Also a good idea is to make it clear with the midwives and staff at the hospital. They are there to look after you - and they should assist in meeting your needs and wishes not to have visitors.

    All the best.


  9. #9


    Set the rules now. Everyone will assume it doesn't mean them. Tell them you won't tell them when you're in labour then. Expect tears and tantrums. Write it in your birth plan and tell the ward midwives to send people away. Expect some family member to just appear by your bedside whatever you do.

    Basically, don't even mention you're pregnant, and if you do give an EDD of a month after your real EDD. Then you get the first week alone because no-one knows! Only thing that works, in my opinion.

    Then again, I didn't want midwives or DH with me, let alone extended family. Even after the birth I only wanted DH, no visitors, and tbh I think I would have wanted that for at least a week, not that anyone listened to mean, selfish me who doesn't want to share her baby.

  10. #10


    It's funny isn't is Rosehip - you get pregnant and suddenly everyone in the family thinks they have the right to every little piece of you.

    Personally I can't imagine a more private and intimate experience to be shared by only me a DH.

    That and I seriously don't want people coming in and telling me that I should be doing this or that - that is going to happen enough and I know myslef well enough that I will bite someones head off pretty fast if they are getting to me. I have done it before - and I don't like coming across like I am mean.

  11. #11


    I had my mother tell me I wasn't feeling kicks when DH and I had seen them! So yup, you are now public property and ALWAYS wrong. Good for you for sticking up for yourself, I hope people get the idea soon.

  12. #12

    Join Date
    Oct 2006


    I think you have every right to ask people not to visit until you are ready. We did. I was initially booked for a c/s (placenta praevia) and our plan was to not even tell anyone when it was booked for and announce the birth after it happened. As it turned out, I went into labour naturally, had emergency c/s, bubs born 4:42 in the morning, we rang our immediate family 4 hours later and told them they can come visit after 3pm. Everyone else we told that night or the next day. As far as I know, no one was offended or upset.

  13. #13

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    the mulberry bush


    i wouldn't worry about it, and i wouldn't say anything to them beforehand, because it might end up worrying you even more depending on how they react... people can be so insensitive sometimes... they might even joke about coming in etc... it could freak you out... my MIL kept saying she would be in the waiting room but she wouldn't come in... the very idea of her being just outside the door freaked the hell out of me....!!! i thought she'd be looking at her watch and busting in to see what was taking so long.

    if it were me and i could have my time over, i wouldn't tell anyone i was in labour except my partner (obviously) and my parents, as i can trust them to respect my wishes... the rest you get your partner to call once the baby arrives or whenever you are comfortable with dealing with people... and you can also stipulate 'mum and baby doing well but no visitors yet'... and that you will let them know when its appropriate to visit.

    unless otherwise wanted/needed by the mother, i think the only people that should be present at the birth are the people that were present during conception.

  14. #14


    Its def your choice and i would say what you want now and emind them again at the time. we told both sets of parents that we didn't want them coming to the hospital until we rang to say they could. we rang and told them when we were in labour and fil asked if we wanted them to come to the hosp, but we said no and we'll let them know. we also stayed at home for half the labour anyway so there was no point. in the end, it was almost 3 hours after Alyssa was born that hubby rang our parents because of a few minor complications. we texted friends and said that we will let them know when we were ready fir visitors (one ir two we still haven't said we're ready!). it was only a couple of rewally close friends rhat we said to come to the hosp the day after she was born, the rest were a week later at home if they wanted. we also said no siblings the first day, mainly due to it being a fyll room if dh family turned up with his hyperactive 13 year old sis and his bro and his useless gf. as it turned out, mil tured up the first night without fil bu twith bil and the gf. bit annoyed as my family respected our request. remember - its your birth, be strong, be clear and give them a reminder!

    Emma - my mil joked about being in the room aswell - i mentioned that there was a sofa in the birthing room and she said "so we can sit and watch" i know she was joking but it still made me anxious that i would have a room full of people waiting outside to bust in the moment they heard a cry.

  15. #15

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Recently treechanged to Woodend, VIC


    I was pretty ruthless the first time around and I'll be even more ruthless the next. First night my best mate came. That was fine - I wanted her to. Second day BIL and SIL came which was also arranged so that was fine. My family is in the UK so it was DP's family who were going to turn up in droves - I told him to say no. He felt funny about that so I said, well you either tell them no over the phone or I'm putting the Do Not Disturb - No Visitors sign on so if they turn up it will be a wasted journey. Unbeknownst to me, they did turn up, saw the sign and thought they'd better go. Night Four, I had my three girlfriends there.

    Honestly, in the mornings even without visitors I had about six people popping in and out - the paed, the ob, the midwives, the guy taking my lunch order and the newspaper trolley woman. It felt like Piccadilly Circus.

  16. #16

    Join Date
    May 2005
    in the national capital


    I think a Do Not Disturb sign is a great idea.

    Just close the door and put it up so that anyone who does come will get the message.

  17. #17

    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise


    i was in the waiting room when SIL had her first bubba - at my brother's request! i got to play birth bouncer - his best friend and our mum were there, and he needed someone with a level head to stop them killing each other!

    we've already said that no one will know when we have our kidlet til after it happens. i'm not even pg yet, but my mum made the mistake of DEMANDING to be told i was in labour, and that we couldn't say we didn't have time seeing we have a 30k trip to the hospital - straight past her house. hmmmmm. not a smart thing for her to say to me - or DH! we're both stubborn red heads, so she's gotten us both offside. we don't have a great relationship anyway, so don't know what she thought she was gonna achieve!

    my SIL may get a phone call - will very much depend on how DH and I feel about photo's and stuff. she's awesome with a camera, so we might call her to take piccies during and soon after the birth. we've already said we're going to have a Doula, so we may leave it up to her... who knows

    whatever decision you make, make it VERY clear to not only the "visitors" you might have, but to DH as well - no point you saying "ok, we need this time" and him not going along with it!

    start screening calls early, and deliberately "miss" calls from family that you think would "assume" you're in labour if you don't answer a call. we do this already as our home phone is a fax as well, so answering machine and screening are our friend!

    if all else fails, just don't tell anyone you've given birth til you're home and ready for visitors!!

    good luck


  18. #18

    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    On the edge of Crazytown


    unplug the phone in your room too if you have too! I left mine on but told the switch board NO INCOMING CALLS please. But someone didnt pay any attention to that and put through the two callers I was most trying to avoid.... BIL and SIL... My BIL rang up to tell my dh ( his bro) off cos dh's mobile was off and he needed to talk about work stuff. but dh wasnt there so i got told off in his place. NOT nice, so I snapped back and hung up on him.

    And get the nurses and midwives in on the act. They should be extremely helpful in screening your visitors.

    That first 24 hours is SO precious. once its gone you never get it back. Treasure it and stick to your guns! others will get over it. If they are upset then they are obviously thinking about themselves and not you and your new baby.

    Ok sounds pretty harsh I know, but i have many regrets. I was inundated with DD1 so much that i never got the breast feeding sorted properly before i went home. I had so many visitors in hospital and at home and i was not comfortable feeding in front of anyone. She went on to bottlefeeding at 10 days old and i will regret that probably for the rest of my life. She is 10 now and it still upsets me...

    please. decide what you want and be strong. your the sake of your new baby and yourself.

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