Natural Birth

Argh! When are people going to get that this is a PERSONAL choice??

I'm only 9 weeks pregnant, and I'm already running into major opposition from friends, family, and co-workers about my natural choices for this pregnancy.

I have CHOSEN not to drink caffeine (soda--I don't drink coffee or tea anyway), use artificial sweeteners,  plan on going all-natural for this birth, etc., etc., etc. It's a personal choice, and not based on any medical advice I've received.

I mentioned in passing at work yesterday that I was wondering if my extreme fatigue was because of no caffeine or just pregnancy in general, and one of my co-workers went off on me, telling me how it's "ok" to drink caffeine, and it's not a big deal, bla bla bla. I told them yes, I know, my doctor said it was fine...this is just something that I've chosen to do for my own health, as well. 

Sorry, just had to get that off my chest. It was just one of MANY instances like this in the last few weeks that have caused me to want to pull my hair out! I'm not judging YOU for choosing an epidural or elective induction or Starbucks every day while pregnant. I honestly don't care--so why are you harping down MY throat for making my own choices??

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has run into this...anyone else??

Jimmie, mama to Zoey (March 2011)
Losses 5/13, 8/13, and 3/14. 
Expecting another GIRL! Carter Grace due on 12/25.

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Re: Argh! When are people going to get that this is a PERSONAL choice??

  • Unfortunately I found these sorts of comments to increase as my pregnancy progressed.

    As for the caffeine, I had the opposite problem! I continued to drink coffee throughout my pregnancy and everyone (including the barista) would ask "are you sure it's ok for you to drink that?" Sometimes you just can't win! 

  • it really comes down to doing what you feel is right for yourself and your own pregnancy.  for the first 12 or so weeks, I was extremely careful and did cut out all caffiene, etc.  I had tried for a while to get pregnant and just didn't want to have the "what if I hadn't done this or that" if something would have happened to the pregnancy early on. 

    now that I'm in my third trimester, I'm looser about things (but still only in moderation).  and I agree with the PP--you get it from both sides!  I have an occasional glass of red wine (4 total this entire pregnancy), have eaten sushi, and enjoy very limited coffee and now everyone's all over me, "should you do this?  should you be doing that??" 

    it is all a personal choice and good luck to you!

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  • Being pregnant opens you up to all sorts of unsolicited advice.  And any little comments you make tend to get people going.  And, I bet this won't be the last time you hear someone say "a little caffiene is ok you know" 

    So long as you choose to do what is best for you, you'll just have to humor others and let them pretend they know better. 

    Smile, nod, walk away, repeat if necessary.

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  • Just wait, my dear, as you start showing more and more, more and more perfect strangers will feel the need to share their feelings and wisdom. I opted for "okay" and my answer to everything. People are rude and dumb- and unfortuneatly, they seem to think they are helpful and intelligent. When you do have your LO it will continue. People will challenge your decisions to not vaccinate or make your own baby food or not use formula or whatever nonconventional choices you make. Good luck and go you! I allowed myself up to ONE soda a  week- and no diet. That was hard enough. I think it's beautiful how pregnancy causes a woman to be so aware of her everyday choices!
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  • When will people get it??  The simple answer is never.  (Sad, but true)

    I find it's best to just keep my decisions to myself.  I do a lot of smiling and changing the subject these days... annoying, but better than getting into a big debate over it.  It's just not worth the stress.

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  • i've had people make comments about me drinking ODOULS!!!! the same person pointed out that it would take 10 odouls to equal 1 beer, but warned me to be careful with it. but when i mention that i want to have a water birth with no drugs everyone thinks i'm nuts. they all tell me that i'll need those drugs, i'll beg for an epidural, "just wait until you're really in labor". you know what, YOU do what YOU feel is right for YOU & YOUR baby. i feel a beer once in a while is ok, and i also feel that i don't need to have caffeine everyday. and if i feel that my baby shouldn't be exposed to drugs on it's way into the world, that's my choice too. next time someone tells you what you can and can't do, just say, "thanks, bless your heart" and smile & walk away. ;)
  • No matter what you do people will either think you're being over the top and too careful, or that you are being careless and negligent. 

    You won't win so don't even try. 

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  • It gets worse the farther along you are. I am so SICK of hearing "Why do you want to go through all that pain when you can feel nothing??" Okay that was YOUR choice NOT MINE!! I have perfect peace about having a natural birth and NO FEAR of the pain. I think it is a matter of mind over tensing up my body. The uterus is just another muscle like any other muscle in your body. So I just tune out the people talking b/c I don't care what they have to say, and I could get really rude and tell them to SHUT UP B*tch! But I don't. But I could it would make me feel better. Wink
  • Sadly, people never get it. Get used to it or buy some earplugs. ;)

     Kudos to you; knocking caffeine out was the hardest thing for me, and I cheated a couple times.  

  • I agree they won't get it either. I have just started talking to my husband about it and even he seems skeptical. I did decide that I'm not telling anyone else about my personal choices when it comes to food, exercise, medications, childbirth, breast feeding, cloth diapering, etc! I don't want to deal with the arguments and debates or even have to listen to unwanted advice from people I barely know or even those i know well!

    So yeah, long story short I'm keeping it to myself until after Baby gets here!


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  • It's just as bad once the baby is born too. People are so weird - they'll come right out with a somewhat controversial question like "Are you planning to stay at home?" or "Are you breastfeeding?" or "Do you let him cry it out to fall asleep?" And if your answer is different than what they chose or intend to do, they act like you're attacking them. I guess they're just looking for validation on something they feel insecure about, underneath all their unsolicited opinions.
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  • It does get worse the further along you get and even when you have the baby. I just reminding people that this is my pregnancy and I will do what feels comfortable for me and not youSmile
  • Firstly, I've been seeing a Naturopath throughout my pregnancy (I'm now 40 weeks and 3 days).  Not only did she recommend staying off caffeine (and that includes decaf coffee as it has more chemicals in it than regular coffee)...she was also my nutrionist - telling me what foods to avoid, eat more of etc.  She gave me more info than my doctor ever did, so I haven't gone back to my doctor since (I have a midwife for the birth).  I have had the most fantastic pregnancy - wasn't sick once, only gained 23 pounds, and have had tons of engergy and been sleeping great throughout. 

     At first, I would get those comments about being too "scared" of things and how I shouldn't be so paranoid.  But you know what, some of those people (who haven't had kids yet of course) are now coming up to me asking what my "secrets" have been to having such a great ride and looking so good.  It's easy to be skeptical until they see what results I have achieved.

     At the end of the day, it's your decision what you do or don't do.  I noticed that the moms who told me they drank coffee/caffeine throughout their pregnancy and everything was "fine"...also had a lot of trouble with their newborns sleeping right up until about a year old, compared to those who didn't and had much more positive stories. 

     You're doing the right thing by sticking to your guns - kudos to you! Good luck with everything:)

  • I hate to say it but "get used to it" and believe me it only gets worse once LO is born....during pregnancy you get all the pressures of what it is ok to eat and drink, the discouragement of choosing natural birth over medicated....the warnings that you might have to have a c-section, etc.

    After LO is born its all about how you choose to put him to bed (if you plan to bedshare or cosleep), whether or not you should jump to pick him up when he starts crying, let him self soothe (although studies show that babies dont really do that until they are 4-6 months old), your choices about breast feeding or not, to do it in public or not, formula is fine...etc..etc.... then god forbid you choose to cloth diaper.....oh how they will tell you how stupid that idea is....then as baby grows its about how ridiculous you are for not allowing things like high fructose corn syrup, nasty chicken nuggets and french fries instead of veggies and healthy foods ("dont you know, that isnt what kids like") and so on and so forth. 

    I say now is the perfect time to buy yourself a nice sturdy pair of big girl panties and put them on....get use to their fit. YOU WILL NEED THEM!

    GL!

  • image Kerianne1176:

    I hate to say it but "get used to it" and believe me it only gets worse once LO is born....during pregnancy you get all the pressures of what it is ok to eat and drink, the discouragement of choosing natural birth over medicated....the warnings that you might have to have a c-section, etc.

    After LO is born its all about how you choose to put him to bed (if you plan to bedshare or cosleep), whether or not you should jump to pick him up when he starts crying, let him self soothe (although studies show that babies dont really do that until they are 4-6 months old), your choices about breast feeding or not, to do it in public or not, formula is fine...etc..etc.... then god forbid you choose to cloth diaper.....oh how they will tell you how stupid that idea is....then as baby grows its about how ridiculous you are for not allowing things like high fructose corn syrup, nasty chicken nuggets and french fries instead of veggies and healthy foods ("dont you know, that isnt what kids like") and so on and so forth. 

    I say now is the perfect time to buy yourself a nice sturdy pair of big girl panties and put them on....get use to their fit. YOU WILL NEED THEM!

    GL!

     

    So true - my son isn't even born yet and I'm already getting questions about all these things!

     

    Love your last line:)

  • I haven't even mentioned our choice to people. It's our personal decision and while I could defend our reasoning, we don't feel like that's something we need to do. We have decided together that that's what we would like for me and our child. If someone asks then I'll tell them, but we know most won't understand so we don't feel the need to bring it up and make them worry. We've done our research. This is what we've chosen.

    That said, My SILs saw me reading "Your Best Birth" and they both said, "you're considering WHAT?" I told them that I was interested and was learning more. One said that she has no desire to be a hero. Umm... ok. I said nothing because I don't feel a desire to be a hero. I just want what's best for my child. The other said that being up and around during labor could be bad because her first daughter had a prolapsed cord. She said that the constant monitoring saved her daughter's life. It was kind of as if to say, "oh my gawd your baby could DIE!"

    I'm more than confident in my doc and between the two of us and my husband I"m confident we'll have a good experience no matter how it turns out. I think we'll do great with a natural birth and my super awesome doctor agrees. It's nobody else's business so I just don't bring it up. 

    If someone say anything about anything else I just say "ok" or "I've done my homework!" 

    Don't let them bother you. Seriously blow them off. 

     

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  • Yay for unsolicited advice! LOL

    I've had pretty good luck avoiding it by either avoiding the topics completely or saying things like, "I just don't feel like eating X" or "I've never really liked X." It's just easier in my opinion to not have to listen to someone tell me what they think/heard from their neighbor.

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  • I just avoid these kinds of topics with people unless I already know they feel the same way I do.  People will ALWAYS have unsolicited advice, and I figure there is no need to get all worked up by even starting the discussion!

     

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  • My standard answer to unsolicited remarks and questions is a big smile and, "Thank you." Other possible retorts would include "my body, my decision," "this is what I feel comfortable with," or similar. People do take incredible liberties with pregnant women (touching their bellies, telling labor horror stories, etc.). It's good to develop your own thick skin and remember that your own knowledge is power. 
  • I was blessed with a grouchy face.  No one approaches me to touch my stomach or apposes me.  And everybody that knows me knows not to do either unless asked to or allowed.  But I had decided before hand that if they did I would tell them about something they believed/did that I did not agree with and say but we all make our own choices in life.  Of course if some random stranger touches my stomach I will break their hand.

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