thread: Who did you have present at the birth?

  1. #1
    Registered User

    Oct 2004

    Who did you have present at the birth?

    Hi everyone, I really need a bit of advice here please. Originally I was only going to have DH present at the birth (it's our first baby btw) but have recently been inundated with requests from family friends, sisters in law and my own mother who would like to witness the whole show.
    A couple of years ago I would not have hesitated to have my mother attend but unfortunately our relationship is not what it used to be and I must say I was rather surprised when she told me she expected to be involved.
    I guess my question is, should I consider having some/all of these people in the room or is it best to just be on our own? And if you have told someone they can't attend, did they take it well or did they sulk?!
    All opinions welcome, thanks.

  2. #2
    Registered User

    Nov 2004
    Western Australia

    Hiya..I must admit Im the same so only DH has been with me. I couldnt stand the thought of anyone else being in there. For us it was such an intimate thing and I know theres doctors and midwives as well but we like the idea of the two of us presenting our lil bundle to the family ya know. Having said that, I have friends and family who have had mothers, mil, sisters and friends be in there as support people and its worked for them. I think you really have to think about what you would like...it is your big day.


  3. #3

    I only had my husband and my mother with me. My step dad was in there when I was going thru the heavy contractions but he couldn't stand to see me in pain (not that he was staying there for the whole birth anyway but he was going to hang around for a while). He lasted 30mins then went home


  4. #4
    BellyBelly Life Member

    Nov 2003

    Both my mum & MIL wanted to be here for the birth but there is no way I was going to let that happen (I'm not all that close with my mum and I would just feel too awkward with her there... having MIL there would be 10 times worse LOL). Luckily they live interstate so it's been easy enough to convince them to wait until after bubs is born (can't tell the exact day he's going to arrive so they might be too early or late etc). I feel that it's going to be a really special time for DH & I and we want it to be just us for a while as it's the start of our family.

    In the end it's your decision and if you're not comfortable having all those people there then it'd best if you just tell them. You're going to have enough to deal with during labour & birth without worrying about half a dozen other people in the room. IMO I think that you need to be comfortable with the people you have there and they need to be able to support you and not just be a spectator and getting in the way IYKWIM?

    Good luck with it!

  5. #5
    Custardtart Guest

    So much of it depends on your relationship with the people involved. The main thing to keep in mind, as the other women have said, that you should choose to do what YOU are comfortable with, not what other people want. This isn't a public show we are talking about, it is the birth of your first child. Nobody has a 'right' to be there unless you want them there.
    If you think it will be supportive to have your family there, go for it. Personally I couldn't imagine anything worse, with my other labours I ended up screaming in pain for part of it, and I really didn't want anyone else around for that part. My SIL was there for the second child, and I have always regretted it - I think it put her off having children!


  6. #6
    Registered User

    Aug 2004

    I had shane there for the whole thing, and Mum there for most of it. She averted her eyes when they were doing internals, but quite honestly I was in that much pain, and there were that many people around, I didn't give a rats bum.

    She left in the end because the dr was trying to turn Jenna with her hands (posterior baby) and it was getting really icky, and also they were prepping me for theatre.

    Didn't regret having Mum there for a second - it turned out to be a special experience, and she was a great support person. But I will admit, it was unexpected, and had it been a normal birth I'm not sure I would have had her there for so much of it. But its all still pretty hazy for me!


  7. #7
    Registered User

    Apr 2004
    Outer East, Melbourne

    Apart from the 57 nurses and doctors and other hospital personel, I just had my partner. Mum and my sister were waiting upstairs and Nick took Caitlin up while I was in recovery.

    No one said anything about wanting to be in there if I had a normal delivery and I would not have liked it anyway. I was happy it was the three of us right from the start and it will be that way the second time round this year.


  8. #8
    Registered User

    May 2004

    I only had Rob, the midwife and later on my OB in the room. I didn't feel comfortable having anyone else in there. One of my friends wanted to come in but I just told her no.

    It is personal choice and it's totally up to you and no one else. If you don't want them in there, just tell them I am sure they will understand.

    Good luck.

  9. #9
    Registered User

    Feb 2004

    I had Aaron & my mum for the whole time & dad for some of the early part - not hat I wanted him there, but that's a different story!

    I didn't notice Aaron leave the 2 times that he did (I was out of it on pethadine at the time), but he said that if mum wasn't there he wouldn't have left me on my own.

  10. #10
    Registered User

    Oct 2004

    Thankyou all for your stories and opinions. I feel a lot better about saying no to several people now! I asked DH what he thought and he was completely lovely about it and said that it was entirely up to me, but he did say that someone else there would take some of the pressure off him. Would it be worth having someone else there for his sake?

  11. #11
    ~Shimona~ Guest

    I'm so glad to read that people have straight out said no to people who wanted to be present but were unwanted. I'm starting to stress a bit because my partners mum is very, well, not intrusive, but, well, I think you know what I mean, and from the start I've said that I didn't want her there and it seemed she understood but I'm afraid that when it comes to the time suddenly that understanding is going to go out the window and she'll be there. 8-[

    My partner and my Mum are coming, provided they don't both pass out since partner has only seen one pregnancy video and I am an only child born by ceasar. I'm happy with those two and hopefully I wont have to get mean with partner's mum.

  12. #12
    Melody Guest

    DH & I talked about this quite early on.... this is my first but my mum has been dropping hints about a 'dream come true, being present at her grandchildren's birth' for about 5 years now

    My sister had her present for both her births & said she was amazing, but then, my sister doesn't have a supportive partner & I do.

    In the end I politely & respectfully said that it was something I just wanted to share with DH..... my MIL has taken it a step further & informed us that she will sit in her car in the parking lot, if need be, but will ABSOLUTELY BE THERE! (Insert theatrics here) She is quite overbearing & craves attention in every situation so it has forced DH & I to agree that we aren't even phoning anyone until after the birth.

    I dont feel selfish admitting that I want him to be 100% with me & that wont be possible if he has to spend most of the time placating his mother in the waiting room. It is a shame that people have to put thier 'stuff' on you but, at the end of the day, you aren't responsible for anyone else in this situation but you, DH & your beautiful baby.

  13. #13
    Registered User

    Feb 2004

    At DS's birth, it was just me and DH and a thearte full of people! lol! But during labour, it was just DH and I and my 2 lovely midwives. My MIL had 'popped' in eariler without warning but I got DH to get rid of her as she was no help.

    There is a great article on the main BellyBelly site which might help you - HERE about the doula revolution. Basically she is a birth attendent that can help with the extra support you feel that you and DH might need.

    At my anti natal class, the midwife said that they recommend having at least 2 support people there so they can support you but also each other. We can't forget that it is quite hard and emotional for most DH's. (or other support partners)

  14. #14
    Registered User

    Feb 2005
    Christchurch NZ

    I was menat to be attending my sister for both of her births - the first was elctive c/s due to breh then the second emergency c/s - co never got to be there - i kinda wanted to but not... And now she is a childbirth educator - teaches ante natal classes and has pretty much assumed she will be there - but i am not sure that i want her to be there - i may chnage my mind if and when i am actually pg - but yeah...Its bad enough that mil and mother and step mum and granny all wanted to come to scans- i couldn't believe they would come out and ask like that - its sucha personal thing if i wanted them there i would ask... anyway is a moot point here for a while...Hope that things go well for you...

  15. #15
    Fire Fly Guest

    I was adamant that it was only going to be DH. I made that quiet clear to both familys that that was MY choice.
    We also decided not to let anyone know that i was going into labour. Have to say it was the best decision ive made. There was no one waiting for hours in the waiting room so all we had to concerntrate on was each other.

    I plan on doing the same with this one. If im in my home town to give birth then ill have my sister on stand by to look after DD in case its a late one but know when will know when its happening.

    We cant stand any of DH family so it makes it very easy not to tell them. We havent even told them im preg again. Lol

    Do what YOU want to do. Its an emotional time once the baby is born and you have to think who you want to share those precious first hours with. During labour you wont care whos in the room, let me tell you, but think of once the baby is born. There all going to wont a hold.

  16. #16
    Registered User

    Oct 2004

    Fire Fly I will definately not be telling anyone that we are heading into the hospital (which has been the next most requested thing lately!) as you are soooo right- who wants them all there immediately afterward? I've decided that it will just be hubby and myself and we'll start letting everyone know once we've had some alone time with bubs.
    Thanks everyone for your replies, you've helped me to realise that this part is all about us and not the rest of the family- they can get involved later. I'll be able to relax a lot more now

  17. #17
    Registered User

    Mar 2005


    Sweetie, I think considering it's your first, then maybe you and DH should share the most important moment and it's the first of all this an emotional experience.

    Maybe the easiest way to avoid all this hassle for you is to not tell anyone when you go into labor-hopefully you won't have to lie it may be really quick and you'll have no choice, but don't tell them and say it was really quick and you had no choice(does that make sense or have I been repetative)

    Good Luck

  18. #18
    Registered User

    Mar 2005


    BTW for our first it was just me and DH.

    2nd it was DH and my beautiful SIL(my brother's wife)-she was a rock she'd worked all day -she's a DR then stayed with me all night till he was born at 4.46am, then finally I let her go at 6am- I LOVE HER, she's a rock