Caribbean Babies

Talk to me about hospital visitors.

edited February 2014 in Caribbean Babies
(This might be lengthy.)

In my husband's family, any time a baby has been born, his entire family has waited at the hospital. Both of his older sisters had planned c-sections so all of the parents, siblings (there's A LOT of them), siblings' spouses and nieces/nephews all gathered for HOURS waiting on the baby to arrive. I think everyone took the day off of work/school to be there.

When my SIL had her baby last spring (the first "baby" in our family), I showed up the day she was induced and spent the night. We had family members there 24/7 rotating in and out of the waiting room, her room, etc.

When we found out we were pregnant, my husband and I talked a lot about how we wanted this to go. Because I think what my family did to my SIL kind of sucks, and I think having my husband's entire family waiting in the wings sucks. When the baby is born, I don't want to worry about anyone rushing in to see her, hold her, take pictures of her, etc. I want my husband and I to spend that first hour or so alone with her before we even CALL anyone to come and meet her.

I have a lot more less important reasons for this idea, too. One being that my family will not be able to take off of work for a day (or two if labor takes that long) to sit at the hospital all day. They just don't have that flexibility in their jobs. DH's family does. And it pisses me off that his entire family would be out there all day waiting on our baby while my family is nowhere to be found. And, of course, they'll expect to barge right in and hold our baby even if my parents haven't seen her yet.

Two, I'm not very close with any of DH's family and neither is he. We see one of his sisters only on holidays and they never speak the rest of the time. It irritates me that she thinks she should be right there by the delivery room door when she barely knows either of us. His other siblings are kind of assholes and his communication with them is sporadic, but damn it, if a baby's coming, they think they're first ones in the door.

(If I'm being crazy, blame it on the hormones.)

I also know how MY family can be, especially my parents. They'll make guilt-inducing, passive-aggressive comments if I want to hold my baby for an extra ten minutes instead of letting them. I just know I'll hear "You're going to get her all day when you get home!" because that's the kind of thing they mumbled to me when my SIL just wanted to hold her baby. I also know that my dad will throw a fit about not being able to update Facebook or send pictures to other family members (DH and I want to be the ones to announce her arrival).

Ugh. Sorry, this turned into more of a vent...

So DH told his mom that we weren't calling anyone until Alice was here. She burst into tears. And then told me on a later day that she just wanted to be there somehow, even if it meant sitting in the car. "I won't come in until y'all say it's okay, I just want to be there. You don't have to tell me what's going on, I just want to be in the waiting room or something."

...how is that ANY different than being at home and waiting for the call?

My siblings are fine with it. My brother was overjoyed because he said it means that when he's on his way to visit, he won't have to start thinking of ways to call into work if she's not there by the time he has to leave.

My mom was fine... I think. And I haven't told my dad yet because I'm scared.

So, hey. What are you doing when D-Day happens? Are you telling everyone you're in labor and having them meet you there? Are you waiting until you leave the hospital? Are your family members going to be as butt-hurt as most of ours will be?


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“When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

- J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

 Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.

Re: Talk to me about hospital visitors.


  • So DH told his mom that we weren't calling anyone until Alice was here. She burst into tears. And then told me on a later day that she just wanted to be there somehow, even if it meant sitting in the car. "I won't come in until y'all say it's okay, I just want to be there. You don't have to tell me what's going on, I just want to be in the waiting room or something."

    Oh good Lord, that's the most passive aggressive thing I've ever heard. I can totally see my Mom saying that to make me feel awful. My eyes won't roll enough for that statement.

    I don't think I would have problems with S/O's side, they are really nice and probably wouldn't come up until we said so. My family should be the same, but I know my Mom will be a sad panda when I tell her I don't want her there when I'm in labor. She gives me too much anxiety, but I'm just private about labor/delivery. It's not a fucking show.

    There is just NO reason for people to come to a hospital and wait in a boring waiting room. I have never gotten that 'tradition'.

    When DD was born, I had family coming in and out mere hours after she was born, just hanging out in the room while I shivered from meds and was all looped up, covered in blood. My alcoholic grandpa showed up randomly! I even had a no visitors sign ignored.

    My DD's dad's mom apparently LISTENED OUTSIDE MY DOOR WHILE I WAS IN LABOR WTF. DD wasn't in the room much, she was preemie and needed oxygen for awhile in the nursery.

    So because of all of that, I have major anxiety about it all. I'm leaning on not wanting to tell people when I'm in labor - I want S/O helping me, not texting 45 people what I'm dilated. There is no extra time to keep everyone informed, I need his full attention on ME.

    I will probably just start now verbalizing that there will be no need to show up at the hospital until we call and say you can come up - and that will only be parents and siblings. Everyone else can wait a few days to a week before coming over to our house.

    "Your truth is different from my truth, and we're both right."

    TTC since March 2013. BFP 4/13/13, blighted ovum discovered 6/6/13, m/c 6/8/13.

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    likeanoldtimemovie
  • You could always tell people you went into labor so fast you had no time to call anyone.

    "Your truth is different from my truth, and we're both right."

    TTC since March 2013. BFP 4/13/13, blighted ovum discovered 6/6/13, m/c 6/8/13.

    BFP 11/10/13, EDD 7/25/13 - stick little owlet!

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    likeanoldtimemovie[Deleted User]
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  • With DD, my sisters and grandparents were in the waiting room, and my mom, DH, and step-dad were in the delivery room. My dad and DH's family came in after she was born. This time around, we don't want people waiting around. DH wants his family to be there, but honestly? I'm not sure I feel the same way. For the most part, though, everyone will get a head's up when I go into labor, but a majority will be told not to come in until after LO is here.


    Do what you want, everyone's feelings be damned. It's your body, and she's your baby. There's a hospital here that doesn't let any visitors for the first hour post-baby so that mom and dad have time to do their own bonding with baby. I really wanted to deliver there, but since I work for the competitor hospital in the area, insurance won't pay for it.
    My midwife is DH's great-aunt and has delivered him, all of his siblings, cousins and all of their children. She is AMAZING and I know if I asked her to tell everyone we needed an hour post-baby, she would totally do it.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    “When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

    - J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

    married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

     Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


    I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.
    [Deleted User]
  • @sweettea42

    I feel so sad for you! My SIL had a c-section, but they refused to let anyone touch the baby until she was out of recovery and had him in her arms. They could only see him through the window. It would kill me if everyone got to pass my baby around while I was passed out. Ugh.

    I hope this birth is everything you want it to be!
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    “When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

    - J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

    married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

     Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


    I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.
  • tealowl said:
    You could always tell people you went into labor so fast you had no time to call anyone.
    This has also been in my mind. I have to remind myself that the last three births either side of the family witnessed were scheduled c-sections and inductions. I'm hoping to just go into labor without intervention and have the baby. The previous births, it was easy for everyone to hang out in the labor room while the moms were waiting for a certain time or had an epidural and were sleeping, but I'm hoping to be in active labor, without an epidural, the whole time. The thought of people trying to visit and be involved while I'm so focused is enough of a reason to keep them all out.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    “When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

    - J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

    married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

     Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


    I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.
  • tealowl said:

    So DH told his mom that we weren't calling anyone until Alice was here. She burst into tears. And then told me on a later day that she just wanted to be there somehow, even if it meant sitting in the car. "I won't come in until y'all say it's okay, I just want to be there. You don't have to tell me what's going on, I just want to be in the waiting room or something."

    When DD was born, I had family coming in and out mere hours after she was born, just hanging out in the room while I shivered from meds and was all looped up, covered in blood. My alcoholic grandpa showed up randomly! I even had a no visitors sign ignored.

    I will probably just start now verbalizing that there will be no need to show up at the hospital until we call and say you can come up - and that will only be parents and siblings. Everyone else can wait a few days to a week before coming over to our house.

    All of this, too. My dad has friends that I can't stand, people that he tries to bring into our family and have them involved in everything. One friend of his, a lady in her 60s that I do NOT trust, cried and begged to come to my wedding. I said no, but he let her come anyway and she's in a lot of my pictures and it makes me so sad. I can totally see him bringing her to the hospital when I have Alice and DH having to throw her out.

    And other people like my younger SIL's flavor-of-the-week boyfriend or my BIL and his skank girlfriend? No thank you. They are not welcome and will NOT hold my baby.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    “When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

    - J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

    married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

     Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


    I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.
  • With my first we called my parents to let them know I was going to the hospital (tried to call IL's, they didn't answer the phone).  Called them again when baby was here and they rushed up to the hospital.  For us, it was too soon.

    For baby #2 we waited until we were all settled to call anyone to come visit.  My parents knew though, since they took care of DS for us.

    This time, same thing.  My parents will have the boys, but no one is coming to visit until we're all ready and settled.

    All I remember from that first time is too many visitors way too soon when we were still getting to know our son, and trying to breastfeed, and I was tired.  No way.  No more 3 ring circuses after the baby arrives.

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    son#1 born 6/2010

    son#2 born 4/2012

    son#3 born 7/2014

    likeanoldtimemovie
  • I am telling everyone to stay away (even my mom and MIL) until baby is 2 weeks old. I strongly value the days after birth for just me, DH, DS and baby to bond as a family, for breastfeeding to be established, etc.

    And even then, if someone visits, it had better be to help with something and not to hold baby while I go do work. :P

    You can do a few things to help take the blame off you:

    1. Ask the L&D waiting room to tell anyone who comes to visit you and baby that you are not receiving visitors in the hospital. Done done and done.

    2. If you decide to take visitors, you can set specific hours yourself, and ask the nurses to limit each visit to 15 mins. They'll come in and say they need you alone for a test, checkup, nursing, or whatnot, and shoo everyone. Done done and done.

    :)
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    tealowllikeanoldtimemovie[Deleted User]bumpuser1282882
  • Has anyone actually followed through with a strict no visitors rule or 'not telling family till the baby is born' rule? How did your family react and take it? Were they upset? Did they eventually get over it?

    Half of me doesn't care what people think and the other half of me doesn't want to come across as rude.

    "Your truth is different from my truth, and we're both right."

    TTC since March 2013. BFP 4/13/13, blighted ovum discovered 6/6/13, m/c 6/8/13.

    BFP 11/10/13, EDD 7/25/13 - stick little owlet!

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  • tealowl said:

    Has anyone actually followed through with a strict no visitors rule or 'not telling family till the baby is born' rule? How did your family react and take it? Were they upset? Did they eventually get over it?

    Half of me doesn't care what people think and the other half of me doesn't want to come across as rude.

    I wasn't able to follow through with not telling anyone when I had DS because DH and I were living with my mom at the time (le sigh) and I had to be induced 3 weeks early.

    I DID follow through with no visitors on the first day, though. We had a 20min rule, established with the nurse, on day 2, and took visitors in the afternoon for a couple hours. We also specified grandparents only in the hospital. So no friends, cousins, aunts/uncles, etc., were permitted.

    This time, my rule is 2 weeks (see above). ;)
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  • tealowl said:

    Has anyone actually followed through with a strict no visitors rule or 'not telling family till the baby is born' rule? How did your family react and take it? Were they upset? Did they eventually get over it?

    Half of me doesn't care what people think and the other half of me doesn't want to come across as rude.

    That's my worry too. It sounds well and good, but both sets of family are 6-7 hours away and I know that they'll want to come stay with us immediately. My mom already asked if she could be in the delivery room (uh, no, mom. Jesus.) and I gently suggested that it might be better if try give us a week at home for me to recover etc. before we're hosting people at our house, but they tend to suck at taking subtle clues. The idea of having people rush into the room immediately afterwards and want to hold the baby gives me anxiety just thinking about it.

    n Chart</a>"http://www.fertilityfriend.com" style="font-size:smaller;" >Ovulation Charww.fertilityfriend.com" style="font-size:smaller;" >Ovulation Chart</a>

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  • Everyone thinks that new parents need help most right away, but in the early days/weeks, you're running on adrenaline and the newness of things, and you really don't need help yet.

    Seems like most new parents might need the most help a week or 2 in, when things calm down and it gets hard, you've run out of clean underwear and frozen dinners, and you've been sleepless for days. ;)
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  • My situations kind of unique since any visitors have to plan months in advance for a trip here (unless they want to pay out the ass for a plane ticket at the last minute).  

    My best friend is coming a week or two ahead of my due date and staying until she has to leave for school and her job.  I think my mom is coming the same time, so they will most likely be coming to the hospital with me and DH.  

    I'm not allowing any visitors from my workplace to come up to the hospital.  I'll send an announcement to someone in my flight/squadron after we are home.    
    Me: 31 DH: 31
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  • That whole situation sounds very unpleasant.  I can't imagine that many people waiting around, and I also can't imagine sitting in a waiting room for hours and hours waiting for a baby to arrive.  It's your baby and you call the shots!  Be firm with them and don't feed into their manipulations.

    My parents didn't let anyone see me or my brother for a month after we were born, so I think they'll respect our wishes, whatever they are.  My ILs live 3 hours away, so I assume they'll come up the weekend after baby is born.  I have already told DH that his parents are staying with his sister and not at our house.  I want to be able to kick people out and have time to build our little family of three.  
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  • I just tried talking to S/O about this last night and he cut me off and pretty much told me his Mom WILL be there - IDK if he meant in the waiting room or after the baby is born, not sure...I didn't continue the conversation because I could tell he wasn't going to listen to my concerns. So I'm not too pleased right now...

    "Your truth is different from my truth, and we're both right."

    TTC since March 2013. BFP 4/13/13, blighted ovum discovered 6/6/13, m/c 6/8/13.

    BFP 11/10/13, EDD 7/25/13 - stick little owlet!

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  • I have several friends that work in labor and delivery and they have told me they don't mind being the bad guy. They will gladly not allow family into the delivery room for as long the parents want. One girl told me that she personally thinks that the first two hours are important for bonding and no one should be holding the baby but mom, dad, or if needed, medical personnel. Maybe you could check with your hospital and see if they're willing to do that for you.

    If I had my way, we wouldn't tell anyone I was in labor til after she was here but DH isn't ok with that so we compromised. I told both families the only one I want in the delivery room is DH. If they want to wait, that's fine but they're not expected to and we'll let them know when baby girl gets here. Everyone is ok with that except my sister (for some reason she had delusions of being in the delivery room...HELL NO) but she'll get over it. Do I really think they'll stay home and wait for a call? No. But as long as they understand they're in for a very long wait, I don't really care.
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  • So glad to know I'm not the only one wanting some privacy! I'm definitely going to let my midwife and nurses know that I don't want any visitors for the first two hours. After that, the first people I want to meet Alice are our big kids. No questions.

    @tealowl Ugh, I'm sorry. That sucks that he wasn't really listening. Maybe give him some time?
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    “When the first baby laughed for the first time, its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.”

    - J.M. Barrie Peter Pan

    married on the sweetest day 10.20.12

     Chicken - 07.08.06 | Bubsy - 02.24.09 | Sunshine - 07.16.14


    I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years. I'll love you a thousand more.
  • Elbug said:
    tealowl said:
    I just tried talking to S/O about this last night and he cut me off and pretty much told me his Mom WILL be there - IDK if he meant in the waiting room or after the baby is born, not sure...I didn't continue the conversation because I could tell he wasn't going to listen to my concerns. So I'm not too pleased right now...
    I'm sorry that conversation didn't go over well.  I agree, give him some time and clarify later whether he intends for her to be in the room or in the waiting room.  These talks with family are tough when they want to be right up in your business for the delivery and all you want is to focus on you and baby only.  
    And @likeanoldtimemovie - I'm going to bring the subject up again at a different time. He doesn't fully know/understand the severe anxiety I have about it. I'm totally okay with parents coming there after the birth and we have had our own time. Maybe a few hours before we d/c from the hospital. Because if he wants his Mom there, that means ALL the parents would need to be there, to be fair. Then the siblings would come, and then the moms will want to call their sisters, etc...and then it turns into a effin' show. UGH NO.

    "Your truth is different from my truth, and we're both right."

    TTC since March 2013. BFP 4/13/13, blighted ovum discovered 6/6/13, m/c 6/8/13.

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  • Kirby513 said:

    As someone who has been pregnant for 5 minutes and hasn't thought about all this that much, I just want to say that this thread gave me equal parts reassurance and panic.  I have no idea what I want or what's going to happen, but you ladies made me think and start a convo with H last night.  Oooff, I can tell this will be a touchy subject.

    After this thread I brought up to DH my plan of not having his mother (or mine!!!) visit for about the first 2 weeks so that we have time to bond as a family. They're states away anyway, and would have to get time off from work and buy plane tickets, so I thought he'd be fine with it. But he seemed to really be hurt that I don't want his mom there...we have a long road ahead.

    I'm thinking now (due mid-October) that maybe the best plan is to see if we can put off visitors until Thanksgiving week. I don't know if he'll go for that, but it's worth a try!
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    kirby023
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