"Lemon Clot Essay" aka guests after delivery? Long — The Bump
December 2014 Moms

"Lemon Clot Essay" aka guests after delivery? Long

I know a lot of us are making plans regarding guests and family members coming to visit around our due dates and after baby is born. I was lucky enough to have been linked to this post during my first pregnancy and wanted to share it. While a bit graphic, it does bring up some good points to consider.

Note: This was written as a response to a forum post regarding a DH insisting that his parents be allowed to come stay with the expecting couple for an extended period of time starting on the due date. Obviously, this "essay" was based on one woman's post partum experiences.


The Lemon Clot Essay (by Sharon1964)

You will be leaking out of places you don't want to leak out of. Do you really want to stand up from the couch and have your father's parents see that not only have you bled through your pad, but the blood is now running down your leg. Do you really want to say, "honey, can you come with me to the bathroom, I am bleeding all over and I feel a huge bloodclot coming out"... in front of them? Contrast that to "mom, I need your help please, now, I'm bleeding all over!" Does your husband really understand the volume of stuff that will be coming out of you, the possibility of lemon-sized clots of blood? Not 2-dimensional lemon-sized, but huge, round, 3-dimensional lemon-sized?

How many bathrooms do you have? If only one, do you REALLY want to have to make it "guest-level clean" every time you leave it? Do you really want this gang of people ogling your diaper-sized pads, peribottle, tucks pads, and all the other supplies that will be in the bathroom? Even if you have two bathrooms, that means you can't use the main bathroom, because you still have to leave it "guest-level clean" every time you use it.

Do they really plan to do something other than hold the baby, pass the baby around, and sit around expecting you guys to wait on them? Are they going to sit and stare at you? Thirty minutes after they arrive, and baby wants to breastfeed, are they going to quickly and willingly LEAVE your home so that you can breastfeed in the privacy and comfort of your space? Or are they going to hang around outside, waiting for you to be done, and knocking every so often wanting to know if they can come back in? Yeah, that's great for breastfeeding.

Or better yet, are they going to blow you off, saying "it's no big deal", and expect you to breastfeed in front of them? Even experienced moms need several weeks of practice to get good at it, so to speak, so that they can breastfeed wherever they want. Learning to breastfeed is not a time for people to ogle and stare at you.

When your breasts are engorged and painful and you want NOTHING to touch them, what then? Does your dh think it will be okay for his dad to stare at your huge naked breasts as you walk around topless?

What if your birth is smack in the middle of their trip? So what are they going to do the first few days, before baby? Are they going to sit and stare at you, waiting for the big moment? Then what? Are they going to camp out in your hospital room every day, all day? Yeah, that's great for resting. What happens when you leave the hospital and they beat you to your own home, and all you want to do is lay down in your own bed? Are they going to leave graciously, or are they going to sit in your living room, eating your food, messing up your house, and making noise, so you can't nap?

Does your DH understand ANY of these things?? Does he not understand that it is NOT about entertaining guests, but about recovery from a major medical procedure (either vaginal or c-section)? Does he not understand that you just grew another human being in your body, and will have just gone through the process of getting it out?? This is going to be an exhausting, messy, wildly hormonal time. Does he not get that??


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Re: "Lemon Clot Essay" aka guests after delivery? Long

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  • RayRay007RayRay007 member
    edited September 2014
    At least my DH mostly gets it so that he can deal with his parents that don't. He knows I don't want his mom to "help" when these babies are born and that I'll want my own mom. My ILs act like guests and don't know how to keep visits short.
    Eta: not that I wouldn't like MILs help, but that she's not helpful at all

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  • MIL & FIL met us on the way home from the hospital. They were wonderful, we talked about my hemmeriods and MIL reminded me that I will have HUGE clots falling out of me. I love my IL's.

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    kapio2012[Deleted User]
  • Oh this sounds AWFUL! Maybe this will help with your decision about how long your mom stays @BrainCellSup‌.
    BrainCellSup[Deleted User]
  • It definitely helps! There is so much I'm in for that I don't even know enough to expect.
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  • Ok so now I am scared out of my mind! So now I have questions maybe dumb ones! Do u start bleeding before your water breaks? And after the baby is born and the placenta is out how many days do you bleed? I thought if u breastfeed then u don't bleed or bleed as long? And they are huge clots?? Yikes! Sorry I know nothing. I was never told anything either had to figure everything out on my own this far.
  • emmyjoy11 said:

    Ok so now I am scared out of my mind! So now I have questions maybe dumb ones! Do u start bleeding before your water breaks? You can have bloody show, you won't bleed like you will afterwards though once you water breaks.

    And after the baby is born and the placenta is out how many days do you bleed? It differs with each woman. Some bleed for a a couple weeks others up to 8-10 weeks

    I thought if u breastfeed then u don't bleed or bleed as long? And they are huge clots?? Yes you will pass some big clots.

    Yikes! Sorry I know nothing. I was never told anything either had to figure everything out on my own this far.


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  • emmyjoy11 said:

    Ok so now I am scared out of my mind! So now I have questions maybe dumb ones! Do u start bleeding before your water breaks? And after the baby is born and the placenta is out how many days do you bleed? I thought if u breastfeed then u don't bleed or bleed as long? And they are huge clots?? Yikes! Sorry I know nothing. I was never told anything either had to figure everything out on my own this far.

    It's not really scary, just more gross. Recovery is different for everyone.

    As far as what to expect, ask your OB to go over the basics with you at your next appointment.

    You might have some "bloody show" when/if you lose your mucous plug before you go into labor. But you probably won't have actual bleeding before your water breaks. FYI your water may not break at the beginning of labor (it is actually really rare). Ask your OB what labor signs to be looking out for.

    Bleeding post partum: it is different for everyone but it is not unusual to bleed for several weeks after giving birth. Your body has to clear out all the extra stuff left over. It is different from a normal period. Clots are normal (I never had any lemon sized but I definitely had some big ones). Breastfeeding will often delay your first true period but your body will still clear out after birth. Breastfeeding will also cause your uterus to contract (uncomfortable but good for recovery).

    It is pretty gross. Stock up on extra "overnight" pads, some women prefer to go right for the Depends in order to avoid risking leaks.
    amedberyhaleyusf
  • ColeyCannoliColeyCannoli member
    edited September 2014
    emmyjoy11 said:
    Ok so now I am scared out of my mind! So now I have questions maybe dumb ones! Do u start bleeding before your water breaks? And after the baby is born and the placenta is out how many days do you bleed? I thought if u breastfeed then u don't bleed or bleed as long? And they are huge clots?? Yikes! Sorry I know nothing. I was never told anything either had to figure everything out on my own this far.
    Hope this helps: Babycenter - lochia
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  • Thank you lady's for telling me what to expect :)
  • This time around I have said no guests for 2 weeks.
  • So true. So very very true.
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  • Currently residing with my parents, which I dont think will be horrible, they should be good for leaving us in our little "suite" we have. However I just had lunch with MIL, who I really do love, where she mentioned saving her paid holidays for when the baby comes. I just kindly stated she might want to save them for the holidays that were also coming up because I was just not dealing with saying "No ones coming near me until I feel up to it." I think I'm too nice sometimes, and I seriously think DH is in for a rude awakening after birth lol he's had it easy with me so far.
  • With our first, I was insistent with DH that neither sets of our parents would be staying with us when baby came but that if I felt I needed the help, my parents would be staying and his would not. He did not like that I laid down the law like that, but as it turns out, I was much more comfortable with it being just DH and I and no one stayed with us so that came across as "fair" to him. We haven't had the conversation this time yet, but I'm sure DH and both sets of parents expect the same rules (and they took it surprisingly well the first time so it shouldn't be an issue this time).

    I hope everyone does what's right for them and doesn't let anyone make them feel bad for doing it. Birthing a baby is a hard job and you need to feel comfortable in your own house when you come home.
  • lol.  Thankfully both sets of grandparents live nearby so they visit and leave.  I still remember with ds#1 I was horrible constipated.  It took 8 days to finally poop.  My mom come over every day while DH was at work and would hold ds while I "tried" to poop...and I'm talkin' 2-3 hours of trying.  Thank God it was her and NOT my in-laws!

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  • I love this.  My parents are pretty cool, especially my dad and he kind of makes himself scarce when things get all Natural Geographic. My ILs on the other hand...OMG.  They don't take hints and will just sit there and stare.  They just don't have social skills, so you have to pretty much have to say, "OK, it's time for you to go.  Here's your coat, see you later."  Thankfully DH knows how they are and can deal with them.  I also have no shame about excusing myself to the bedroom if I need privacy.
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  • Aww man- I really think I blocked out how disgusting recovery was. I'll never forget my discharge nurse telling me to come back if I passed anything bigger than my fist- so so gross.
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    mlee116feeshah
  • Lol, I always get irrationally pissed at my postpartum bleeding. I have effing Csections, that sucker is cleaned manually, shouldn't they have taken care of all of that crap!? If my OB was my housekeeper he would be fired ;)

    I have special "yucky" towels for sitting on/sleeping on after

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  • Ohhh, so true, all of this. Unfortunately, my parents are like this, and my ILs would probably be cooler about making themselves scarce. My parents will be staying with us (to watch my DD), and they like to camp out in my living room, watching Fox News at top volume. I will DEFINITELY be hiding in my bedroom with the baby.
    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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  • Stories like this sometimes make me sad that I will have two boys. While I get the in-law issues(mine is a raging B!!) I wouldn't not allow her to hold/meet her grandchild for an extended period if time, regardless of how I felt about her.

    I just hope that the dynamics of my future daughter in laws allow for me to be involved. No, I don't expect to watch them give birth but I sure hope we have a nice relationship where they WANT me to be around. At least I'm learning how not to be from my lovely(not) MIL!!
    [Deleted User]devinefisch
  • I think I will print this out for my mom. She wants me to have christmas at my house this year so everyone can meet the baby. No thank you. 

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    [Deleted User]RaeChayamedbery
  • Speaking of pads, etc. I haven't gone so far as Depends, but I do buy the Poise ultimate absorbency overnight pads. They work soooooo much better than period pads. The amount of "stuff" coming out of you (pee, blood, clots, etc.) is far more than most period pads can handle, even the overnight ones. The ones for urinary incontinence are way better!
    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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  • katehgee said:

    So I am shopping for a new living room couch, and am seriously considering lining it with wee wee pads and wearing depends so I don't ruin it with my post-labor glory. I don't mind dog and baby messes, but blood doesn't come out. Irrational FTM fears for the win.

    Pre-labor too! My water broke on our brand new couch.

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  • This is all good to read, but I firmly believe that it takes a village - and if your village is strong and supportive, bring it on.  My family was there for most everything and was a huge help.  We set the expectation that I would nurse in front of everyone - letting them know ahead of time that that's what I was going to do.   We let people hold Grace from day one and we didn't keep her from anyone.  I'm thankful for a family full of people who WANT to be there and want to celebrate this new life we have brought into the world.   And I am thankful that I have a strong enough voice to say "I need some space, can you come back in an hour?"
    Micropreemie, IUGR mom to Noah, born 10 weeks early at 1lb, 10oz.  Grace born 02/2012
    weezy29feeshah
  • I just can't imagine withholding my child from her family out of spite or anger. Or control.   That really gets under my skin. 

    Speak up Mommas - tell someone to leave - you are in charge - if you need space, say so.  If you don't want someone staying at your home, say so.  But respect that people are excited and don't know your needs/wants until you voice them.  :) 
    Micropreemie, IUGR mom to Noah, born 10 weeks early at 1lb, 10oz.  Grace born 02/2012
  • OMG the thought of my MIL being around when I go into labor is just awful.  That is the last thing I need when I'm dealing with painful contractions.  My MIL did come down the day I was induced and visited the hospital after I gave birth.  She left the day we came home from the hospital - I really didn't want her (or anyone) there on our first night home with DD.

    I didn't mind my own friends coming to visit me. They were great for breaking up the day and giving me something to look forward to. But I remember H's friends stopped by (they had been watching our dog for us) and my milk had just come in and I kept leaking through shirts! 
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  • I think this is one of the times that's it's better for the parents and IL's to live very close by. Both are within 10 minutes. Means everybody will get to see the baby at the hospital and nobody will be staying at my house! Now hopefully all of his family will respect our private time...
    Couple summers ago on July 3rd DF busted his head on a rock while swimming. Had to get 15 staples and cousins were still texting about coming to bbq the next day. Um, no, want to have throbbing brains in peace...
  • I've been thinking about this, too, because DH is pretty close to his parents, mostly his mom. She's big on being part of big events, and I know she'll be bothered by our not visiting for Thanksgiving or X-Mas. So I have a feeling this, one other thing that won't go her way, will make me out to be the bad guy.

    My parents were present for the birth of my first, but not my second or third, and my mom was supposed to be present for the birth of my fourth, but she arrived just after he was born. The rest of my family lived on the opposite side of the country at the time. I also lived in the same apt. community as my mom, and she was a huge help during the early weeks and months when my ex-husband was deployed.

    I never had to deal with my ex's in-laws visiting because they live in VA, and we lived in CA, NC and GA when I had my other kids. However, this time, my in-laws live about 45-50 minutes away, and I'm sure they'll want to visit. This is MIL's first grandchild, and she's very excited. I don't know her that well, and am not comfortable with them visiting right after. Maybe a few days to a week? After we've gotten a chance to be with her. 

    We're also planning another homebirth, which I don't think MIL is aware of, and I don't want anyone not necessary present. My mom may be in town, and I'm completely comfortable with her around, but that's it as far as family goes.
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  • That essay seems a bit dramatic or maybe I had a really easy recovery. The nurses in the hospital and OB at discharge told me to let them know if I had clots bigger than golf ball size. Can't imagine lemon size- that's almost the size of my fist! I did have stitches in 2 places and was sore but only bled for about 2 weeks and never leaked thru pads. All visits were short, nothing more than 1hr but all family is local.
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  • Maybe it's because I had a c section but I never experienced the large blood clots or much bleeding at all but I was told to call for anything larger than lemon sized.

    As for the smell, there is something "off" about it the first week or so but if you bathe regularly and change your pad I think you'll be okay.
  • katehgee said:
    So I am shopping for a new living room couch, and am seriously considering lining it with wee wee pads and wearing depends so I don't ruin it with my post-labor glory. I don't mind dog and baby messes, but blood doesn't come out. Irrational FTM fears for the win.
    Pre-labor too! My water broke on our brand new couch.
    Oh god! Ok, all the wee wee pads are coming out as soon as the couch arrives. We put blankets on the cushions anyway, cause my dogs are dirty beasts. No one will be any the wiser.
    This is one of the things I'm fretting the most over.  Which I realize is completely silly in the grand scheme of things, but this is the first brand new grown up couch we've had, and I would be so sad to stain it. I suppose I'll just go ahead and throw down the extra blankets and towels around Thanksgiving just in case!
  • I had also had a c-sec and wondered why the hell I was still bleeding so much. I really thought since they scraped everything out it would be light. Wrong.

    I have no problems giving DH the get rim of your mom look or giving her the go away look. I really wish no one would come to the hospital because it makes trying to BF awkward. But i cant shun anyone because it means a lot to MH to show his baby off. He's very much a people person and I am not. But he does at least compromise and gently escort people out if I need him to.
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  • I feel like this is a bit dramatic.
    After I had my daughter I had a few family members stay with us, including my mom of course, and no one made me feel uncomfortable. No one expected to be entertained. They were there to help us out. I was able to talk feely about my aches, pains, leaks, stitches, and all that with them. When it was time to BF, was comfortable
    telling them I needed to BF and going into my room. No one cared about the ginormous pads, peri bottles and minor mess in the bath room.
    Maybe I was lucky?

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  • Let me start by just saying I definately agree that MILs can be extremely obnoxious and overbearing. With my ex MIL she didnt miss a thing. She came back to visit me while I was in active labor, which at the time I just wanted to be left alone until the baby was here and the pain was gone, she "patted" my head and talked about wanting to take the pain from me. All good intentions I know but VERY annoying at the time. However, I just dealt with it and like the contractions it passed.

     Fast forward to my fiancee's mother. She did not even make an attempt to come to the hospital to see our DS. (she has also never been to our house or our DS first birthday) Which for me I was ok with because she is very self centered and I just didnt want to deal with it, BUT seeing the heartbreak on my fiancee's face because his mother is selfish and wouldnt come let him show off his son was aweful.

    I guess what I am saying is yes your are going through a lot, yes your are going to bleed, leak, sweat, hurt, and be a little miserable for a little bit. However, this is a very exciting time and whether it is your first baby or your tenth baby everyone wants to be involved. Plus this is a big day for your husband, SO, boyfriend, fiancee also. Trust me seeing him excited is much better than hurt during this time.

    Oh and as far as the bleeding and all that this is my 4th baby and I have NEVER passed a lemon sized clot holy hell I would freak out if I did. LOL You FTMs will be so excited to have baby here all this stuff will seem like nothing. Sorry this was so long :)

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    weezy29[Deleted User]
  • Hey, I don't doubt some of you had an excellent postpartum experience and didn't go through all that was described here...but I sure did! I leaked like crazy, no matter what kind of underwear/pad I wore, and had giant clots. I am seriously considering buying puppy pads for everywhere I sit this go around.
    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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