Still angry 6 months later

I was bent on natural labor and i was so close. and it was so much easier than i thought then suddenly, I got this godawful csection, totally out of left field. after an easy 4 hours of dilating to 10, i was told 15 min or so into pushing that "We have to do a csection" (found out after the fact baby wasn't even in distress, just a mild dip in heartrate-so on top of it all it was unneccesary). I am still so angry and bitter. my doctor had time to cath me, she had to try 3 times as his head was already pretty low. no time to let me push but 3 times to rape my urethra with that stupid catheter which hurt worse than the goddamn labor. having no epidural, i was totally knocked out for his birth. my husband wasn't allowed in the ER since "there was just no time" which i feel is a cop-out. csections are always fast. no time to let my husband in??? I just want someone to talk to who's maybe had a similar experience I'm so tired of feeling alone. i have a sister in law who says "oh i understand but you'll get over it" she doesnt even come close to understanding-she had an epidural, got to hold her baby after he was born. Not being awake...not getting to see him born or hear his first cry and not even my husband can tell me secondhand because he wasn't allowed in. i was so drugged i dont even remember seeing him the first time. and my recovery was a massacre, involving CT scans and blood transfusions. i just feel like it was all ripped away from me without any good reason and im tired of having flashbacks and panic attacks. please someone anyone who's attempted natural birth and got all the way up to pushing then got knocked out please talk to me i really need a friend right now.

Re: Still angry 6 months later

  • I'm sorry, that sounds like a horrible experience!  I do think when you have a bad experience, you need time to grieve it.  Have you tried talking to anyone?
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  • i have 4 sisters who think im overreacting, a neighbor who thinks im 'missing the point' (that a have a healthy baby boy, who would have been healthy without me being butchered) and a friend who thinks i'll get over it eventually but thats the best advice she has for me. i've stopped talking to my friends and family about it because the only response i ever get is that im just supposed to be happy to have a beautiful boy. and i AM happy to have him. im just enraged at how i was treated and what i missed. with my insurance, there's a 3 month waiting list for therapists. so at this point im just looking for kindred spirits, to see how they cope, i guess, cuz i dont know what else to do
  • I feel you. It's only been a week and a half for me, but I'm having a hard time thinking about. I also planned on a natural birth, but after an hour of pushing the dr decided my baby wasn't descending so I needed a c section. I asked if there was anything else I could do, she said no, I had to trust her knowledge. Half way through the c section the epidural wore off, so I ended up feeling most of it without anesthesia. The last thing I remember is screaming that I could feel everything. People say it gets better with time and I hope that's true. I just keep telling myself that I put myself at that hospital because I wanted professional medical personnel there in case something didn't go according to plan. It didn't go according to plan and I have to trust that I made the right choice for my baby when I agreed to the c section. They gave us a blanket and a coupon to the cafeteria as a "We're sorry we cut you open and you could feel everything" token. That was pretty insulting. I was still in recovery and had just seen my daughter and they handed me that. Like I cared at that point, I was still so drugged up. I'm trying to focus on the first moments I had with her that I remember instead of the c section. That's what I want to remember, so that's (hopefully) what I will remember. I hope we both find peace with it.     
  • After being in labor (induction for pre-e) for 48 hours, unable to get out of bed for 4 days prior and 2 days after...

    My daughter is 18 months old and I am still not over what happened. I still feel like she was taken from me, she was early....

    My husband does not "get it"...

  • I am sorry you had such a bad experience. It is so difficult when no one will let you vent or grieve.  You can always vent here. You may also find some good listeners at an ICAN meeting.  Many women there have had similar experiences to yours. {hugs}
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  • It has been just over 6 months for me and I am still very upset, but I do have to say that talking about it here has really helped me begin to move forward. No one close to be has gone through a c-section much less one they felt was uneeeded and can in no way relate or give me any advice. I have also heard that I should just be happy for my healthy baby and all that crap. It really does help to have someone who can empathize.

    I am so sorry you had a such a horrible experience. I also have no memories of my first moments with my son and that is what upsets me the most.

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  • I am so sorry you had such a bad experience.  I agree w/ othe posters...you do need time to grieve.  My experience wasn't like yours, but I still hate the fact that I had to have a c-section as well.  HATED IT!  My son was breech, so I didn't have a choice in the matter.
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  • Oh wow, that sounds horrible. I'd be angry, too! I had a straightforward unplanned c-section, but it was still hard to deal with afterwards.

    This site might be worth checking out, it's a message board for women who've experienced traumatic births. And I second looking up your local ICAN chapter and seeing if they have meetings. 



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  • I also had an unnecessary C-sec, they thought my LO was 9.5 lbs, but came out 7.  Your experience sounds horrible.  I am a psychologist, and I definitely recommend you trying to see someone to talk about the loss.  Many therapists offer sliding scales, meaning you could pay a small fee instead of going through insurance.  Or if you work, you could see if your company has an EAP, employee assistance program, which is phone counseling.  
  • It is possible to be both thankful for a healthy baby and angry at the way he/she came into the world. Don't let anyone tell you any differently or make you feel guilty for feeling how you do.

    Your experience sounds dreadful, and I'm so sorry you and your family had to go through that. I had an unplanned c-section with DS (after hoping for a natural birth) that left me angry for a very, very long time. As I'm in the end stages of pregnancy #2, and planning for a VBAC, I've come to realize that I was less upset about actually having a c-section than I was about how I was treated during my labor and subsequent surgery. It was a dehumanizing experience, and it shouldn't be surprising that it left some emotional scars.

    ICAN is definitely a good place to find other women who know how you feel. I've also found that talking to my doula that I've hired for this pregnancy has helped. And if you're so upset that it's interfering with your life, definitely look into getting a therapist, as pp suggested. 

    I hope you begin to heal soon. 

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  • I am so so sorry you had such a horrible experience.  Your story is exactly why I hated the thought of c/s when I was pregnant.  I don't understand why people act as if it's not a big deal.  It's a very very big deal and much different from a vaginal birth.  Drs often jump to a c/s because it's easier/faster for them.  I'm sorry you were duped into getting one but I know how it can be lying in a bed scared for your baby's safety.  I am fortunate that my dr delivered my baby and I had no choice but a c/s, which was the only situation in which I'd have one.  My water broke when the kid was early and a footling breech so she couldn't come vaginally.  Doing the c/s was an automatic decision for me when we learned all that but I understand how nervous you must have been already in labor trying to make all those decisions. 

    I dreamed for years of a natural birth, even a homebirth.  I planned all pregnancy for it, read the books, talked non-stop about it.  Then I had pregnancy complications and needed a dr.  THEN when my water broke early it was blatantly obvious it wasn't safe for LO to be born naturally or vaginally.  I didn't get get to see one bit of her "birth" with the curtain up or hold her because she was taken to the NICU.  The meds they were pumping in me made me feel like I was going to pass out so even the memory is fuzzy.  I was shaking so badly I could hardly speak and my spinal didn't work well enough.  I'm not angry about her birth.  I'm disappointed, guilty, sad, alot of other emotions but at least I wasn't subject to an unnecessary c/s.  I can't even imagine how you must feel right now.  I would just feel it.  That's what I'm having to do.  Sometimes I can't help but to cry so I just cry.  If you are having a really hard time maybe you could speak to someone professionally.  And there's always us to talk to!

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  • @ anna, its interesting you should post back about your anasthesia not working, i had a nuse tell me i should "feel lucky they got me under in time-some women's anesthesia doesnt work in time and they feel it" as if we should be grateful when people do their jobs semi-correctly! i feel like the pain of my experience pales in comparison to what you've been through though. 6 months after the fact, you might still be angry like me but after i wrote this post i sat down and wrote a letter to my doctor and said everything i felt like i was too drugged or depressed or polite to say at the time, and it really helped to drain some of my anger at what i feel was a really shitty medical decision on her part. maybe try that and include what a ridiculously shallow gesture their little coupon/blanket bullsnot was. cuz i dont know about you but what i really want at the end of the day is a frikkin apology and for a doctor to own up to the fact that they made the wrong call! big big big hugs and thank you for sharing with me and maybe we can help eachother figure out the emotional blowback of this mess. i think the hardest thing i have trouble coming to grips with (and here i tear up again lol god what a mess i am) is that no one who really loved him was there when he was born, dad was made to wait in the waiting room, i was knocked out cold...the only welcome he got was some jackass dr with no respect for the sanctity of the process. i'd have given anything just to hear him cry the first time, see him the moment he came into the world. hell i'd settle for remembering the first time i held him! to all my sisters here who grieve for the sacred, precious moment taken away from them, thank you so much for commenting-all i really wanted was just to know im not alone, and even tho i knew i wasn't, hearing from you guys just makes me kind of take a breath of relief

  • my first wasn't this bad, but it was an emergency c-section ...you could see how bad his heart rate dropped after every contraction.  I don't remember seeing him, hearing him, nothing.  I remember talking to my mom for a few minutes while in the OR but that was it.  ...and I'm still not over it, DS#1 will be 7 in like 4 weeks.

    my 2nd one was planned and was MUCH better.  because it was planned we were able to discuss my fears with all the doctors and nurses involved.  they were very attentive to make sure i couldn't feel anything, but was still alert.  they talked to me until my H got into the OR and then once he left with LO they had a few nurses talking to me.

    If you can go the planned c-section route next time, it is much better. 

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  • I am so sorry that happened to you. I was also put to sleep for my CS with my son and DH was not allowed in the room during the surgery either.I labored for almost 24 hours, pushed for about 1 hr, and I never completely dilated. DS was also a very big baby (10lbs 9oz) and I knew going in that there was a chance for a CS. However, he is 2 1/2 years old now, and I still feel incredibly sad that I didn't have the experience of seeing him right after he came out. When I held him for the first time, I was so drugged up that I hardly remember it. There were also 10 or so family members who had already held him and loved on him before I ever met him.

    I'm due with LO #2 in about 12 weeks, and I am so nervous about a repeat CS. I just want to be awake for it this time, but I'm also nervous of what it will be like while awake.


    It may take some time to get over some of the things that were out of your control. Just know that you are not alone, and keep talking about it. Otherwise, if you keep your frustrations inside, it may get worse. 




  • I am so sorry for how you are feeling and things didn't work out like you had hoped. I too labored for over 12 hours before my doctor said the baby just wasn't able to make it through (over 8lb baby and I am a very tiny woman 5ft and only 105lbs before pregnant).  I did have my husband and mother in law in the surgery room with me but they did knock me out too.  Something wasn't going as planned and the doc was having a hard time so I was told she gave them the signal to knock me out.  

    I remember laying in the recovery room trying so hard to open my eyes and see my little girl but I just couldn't do it.  I am still sad too everyone else got to see and hold her before me.  It wasn't what I thought it would be at all but that's life. Its never 100% planned and all that matters is a healthy baby made its arrival.  

    Good luck in your coping, you are not alone.  I too agree a therapist might be the best to help your healing process. 

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  • call me stubborn but i would never ever PLAN a csection, just like i'd much rather endure the pain of labor-although to be fair, in my case i had an easy 4 hour labor and frankly, i've had periods that were more painful than dialating to 10 cm-i found the experience of labor beautiful and spiritual and i'd do it again a hundred times over if the end hadnt been so horrific. and i dont remember ANY pain while pushing. I probably would have been one of those freak-of-nature painless birthers had the doc not taken the choice away from me. I had a horrible section and an even more horrible recovery and if i was told i could only have another baby if i schedule a csection, i will never have another-luckily i'm a perfect candidate for vbac. I am happy to have a healthy baby, but i am hardly convinced that he wouldn't have been healthy without the trauma i went through, which is why i hate when people tell me to appreciate i have a healthy baby. his APGAR was 9 and tho i'm not a doctor, i imagine if there was a problem it would have been lower. another thing i can't understand is how i know so many women who had their baby's heartrate dip multiple times during labor and still delivered vaginally, where my little guy had a mild dip, one time, after a perfectly awesome labor, and suddenly panic overtook the room-there was no explanation, no choice, nothing but a doctor freaking out. i could FEEL the panic exuding from her and she wouldn't answer me whenever i tried to talk or ask her, she just kept saying "we have to open you up NOW" which is a sickening thing to hear. I still feel like the doc totally jumped the gun and i became a statistic-one of those sections that didn't need to happen but the doc wasn't willing to be patient, not to mention she totally abandoned her bedside manner and the comfort of her patient. if i was a doc havin to do what she did, i'd sooner let my patient pee on the table than ram a catheter in with no benefit of anasthesia. obviously the baby is important but i didnt cease to be a patient with feelings and vulnerability-i dont think being cathed like that was imperative to the health and well being of my baby and it sure did a number on my mental health.
  • I'm sorry to hear about your experience as well. I am also still upset about my c/s 6 months ago, although it was nowhere near as dramatic as yours. Mine was done for a valid reason (late decels), but after Hypnobirth classes, months of practice for a natural birth and the hiring of a (very expensive) doula, I was heartbroken when I learned I needed a c/s. Even without the type of traumatic experience you had, having a c/s when you didn't expect or plan for one is difficult! Don't let anyone tell you not to grieve...it is natural to feel this way. And of course you are happy your child is safe and healthy, we all are after a successful c/s and birth...it doesn't mean we have to like the method that brought them to us. Good luck!
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  • I am so sorry that you didn't get to experience your child's birth. That is traumatic. I will tell you that after my 2nd child was born (VBAC) I felt a lot of healing and closure for my 1st son's birth. I hope you can experience that if you decide to have another child and go that route. (((hugs)))
  • I'm so sorry! Missing those first moments is something that you have every right to grieve, it is a loss. But sh*t happens, and the past is the past, as much as that sucks. I am not saying "get over it" because I don't think that is what you should aim to do- I don't know if anyone would ever really get over something traumatic as that; But I AM saying that you're going to get nowhere in dwelling on the past. It will probably take some time. But try to find inspirations about enjoying the present, and loving what you DO have; glass half full, so to speak. Maybe print out some pictures that will help remind you to live in the moments you're given, not the ones you'll never get back. Maybe set a goal for finding a VBAC doctor. I hope you find closure someday, but in the meantime there are so many women who have gone the unplanned, unwanted Csection route that you are by no means alone in the way you are feeling.
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  • I had a horrible c/s for #5, and it took me almost 2 years to feel better about it. If I am brutally honest, I wasn't "healed" until I had a wonderful birth with DD4 (also a section, but so different for so many reasons). 

     I am sorry you are hurting, and I hope you find some healing soon.  


  • here's another bit of fallout im having a rough time dealing with. i've always wanted 2 children, no more no less-but heres the conundrum.
    my natural med free labor, up until the general anasthesia csection, (and im gonna warn you that im about to sound crazy but i dont care cuz its how it is) it was the most beautiful, profound thing i ever experienced. it felt sacred. it felt right. on some levels it even felt good! yeah im weird i guess...maybe i'd have had one of those orgasmic births lolz. but anyway, i've always had a good tolerance for pain and i dont remember the pain being unbearable until doc started stuffing a cath into me and finally got it right on the third try. cuz apparently they really, REALLY dont want women peeing on them to the point they'd rather put one in an immense amount of pain rather than just send someone to mop up...but i digress.
    labor for me was amazing and id do it again in a heartbeat, sans the section. but with the next baby-do i attempt natural vbac, which is what i want, but risk missing that crucial moment again if i end up with yet another general anasthesia csection? i just want to hear that first cry. i want to see and hold my baby before he/she is whisked off and scrubbed and swaddled by people who dont know or care about that baby the way mommy and daddy do. it would be immensely satisfying and healing to be the first person to hold my next child, not the last.
    so i could pre-emptively get the epidural. but i can't stand the idea, all the complications that can come with it and the possibility of slowed labor or bad reaction or the stupid thing not even working to begin with...i dont think the stress and worry of anticipating an epidural when i did so well without one would be good for my blood pressure...
    i've had people tell me "just schedule the next section it'll be easier and then you can see the baby born for sure" but my recovery from this section was horrendous. i'd rather not ever have another baby than sign up for another round, but that breaks my heart. i really do want another baby in a few years. but i feel like i have no good options anymore.
    so i feel like im pretty much backed into a corner where i will never be able to have another baby because i'll end up with another csection which might wreck me emotionally to a point i can't recover cuz lord knows im having a hell of a time recovering from this one and the idea of it happening again is just terrifying. or even if i dont i'll get stuck getting the epidural just to be safe in the knowledge of being awake to see baby and that isn't really a favorable option either. what am i more scared of...a questionably effective needle in my spine? or sleeping through another birth? im pretty frikkin scared of both.

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