Tuesday, November 30, 2010

a thought on nurses

I recently attended a birth in the exact same hospital that I delivered my son at.  My experience was far from "natural", and I was extremely frustrated with the nurses.

But when I went back as a doula, I was amazed at the difference.  The nurses were attentive, aware, and always asking my client's opinion.  One of the nurses was in school to be a midwife, and knew about different birthing positions, pushing techniques, and so on.  My client was able to have her baby placed directly on her stomach, and left there for a solid hour before they took her to the nursery.  She was permitted to labor on the toilet, push as she felt appropriate, did not receive an episiotomy, and delayed cord clamping.  All of these were things I had hoped for but did not experience.

What was the difference?

I think it was her doctor.

Nurses do not know you personally; they do not understand your experiences, your preferences, your strengths or your weaknesses ... but you can bet they know your doctor's.  They understand how your doctor works, and they will treat you accordingly.  My client had a midwife who was well respected in this hospital, and I had the king of c-sections (who is actually in jail now ... oops).  It only makes sense that they will tailor their treatment to the doctor's style more than your own.

So, yet another reason to be sure you find a doctor that you absolutely agree with.  You cannot take someone who is good at doing one thing, and ask them to do another.  It will be frustrating for everyone involved.

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