STMs- what didn't they tell you before/during/after birth? — The Bump
July 2014 Moms

STMs- what didn't they tell you before/during/after birth?

I'm reading a gem on June 2014 and I am terrified at the things the STMS are saying no one told them about what happens after delivery. What advice do you have for FTMs on what to expect after our LOs arrive?
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Re: STMs- what didn't they tell you before/during/after birth?

  • I had an emergency c-section, and was not aware that I should have tried to stand up within 24 hours. Also I did not know to tell the nurses that I planned to breastfeed . my DS went straight to the NICU , so I missed pumping for the first 24 hours after delivery .

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  • Horrible hemroids. The clots like bpaws said. I had an episiotomy... Ouch. Thank god for sitz bath for all that. And I only breast fed for a week and had to let them dry up. My boobs would get so hard I didn't want to move. So much that people don't tell you. I told my cousin everything so she knows what could happen when she delivers in feb.
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  • Since my water broke, I really wasn't allowed to get out of bed for anything, not even to use the restroom. So I had a catheter and went into a bag.  Since I had an epidural, I didn't even feel it or realize that was happening. That was very unexpected.
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  • Yeah how much blood comes out after like @BPaws said! And how no matter how prepared you may be, birth is completely unpredictable. I had to stand during almost all of my labour b/c the contractions hurt so bad and lasted so long I couldn't get comfortable. I was also naked the whole freaking time and that was not planned for! Just go in being as educated as you can be, but don't think everything will go exactly as you planned for in your head. (DD was a face presentation with the cord around her neck 5 times, so I needed an episiotomy I hadn't really wanted, but you do what needs to be done.)
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  • edited December 2013
    I just finished reading that thread. It seriously gave me anxiety! I wasn't prepared for the pain after delivery. I don't know if it's because I had a 2nd degree tear, or if it happens to everyone but I literally felt like my crotch was on fire. FIRE! I went med-free, and the pain afterwards was almost worse than the labor and delivery.

    Edit: Laughing at my choice of word "crotch."
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  • That you walk in 9 months pregnant and get wheeled out a fatty mc fatty...you will still look pregnant!!!
    acciovino
  • The swelling afterwards can be crazy. Your ankles will be huge and awkward and your hands maybe too.
    Nursing hurts and can take a few weeks to really work. If you want to do it I suggest planning to be in pain and keep trying for about 4 weeks and to ask for help.

    With your second baby, contractions after baby is born are way worse and I've heard get worse with subsequent deliveries. I was not prepared for that as I hardly remember postpartum contractions with DD.
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  • Spray your vag with dermoplast spray, then lay tucks pads onto your pad- it's stops the throbbing.

    Also, the clots you pass are the size of oranges.

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  • Oh the hormone crash! How did I forget that? It was awful- I hardly remember the first week or two because of the crash. It was like I was in a fog.

    The temperature changes suck. One minute I'm drenched in sweat, then next freezing my ass off. In late November I remember turning the air on and keeping the house at 59* then turning the heat up to 75*.
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  • Yes. The sweat. So much of it. Other than that, it honestly wasn't too bad. Even the tearing and healing. The contractions were back to back, which I wasn't prepared for but the epi solved that. Oh, and even if your kid is a nursing genius, your nips will still hurt. For weeks.

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  • I bled a TON after my csection. Some docs will clean you out, mine didn't. Also, if you have a csection, get up an moving ASAP. Not like, 10 minutes or anything. But I was up and moving within 8 hours. Makes a huge difference in recovery.
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  • As far as labor and delivery, I actually felt really prepared (as much as you can be) because my childbirth classes were excellent.  One thing I sort of forgot about was that if you get an epi you are tethered to the bed b/c of the catheter, IV, and constant blood pressure monitoring.  That part was honestly what drove me the craziest, that stupid cuff tightening on my arm every several minutes.  I will do everything in my power to go drug-free this time mainly because of that!
    Thankfully I just had a tiny tear (my doc used oil to help stretch my perineum; I highly recommend asking if your doc does that) so the healing wasn't too bad but it was itchy.  I didn't clot too badly, but some people do (i.e., PP with clots the size of oranges?!?! Yikes!).  I definitely second the advice to use the tucks (and the cream they give you) in your pads, along with ice packs.
    The one thing I think no one really prepares you for is how hard breastfeeding is, but I don't know if anyone can.  Just know that it will hurt, probably a LOT, probably for weeks.  But it gets easier each week and it is so worth it and AMAZING in the end.  I nursed DS for just over 3 yrs and am so happy I did.  So if you want to do it, you really need great support from your SO, LCs, and your workplace if you pump (which I did, of course).
    I also agree with other PP: you can't really plan for how labor/delivery will go.  Things come up. If certain things are really important to you, communicate those things with the nurses, but also be flexible.  Oh, also, the nurses will be FAR more important to how your labor goes than your doctor.  You won't see much of your doctor until you're pushing.
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  • No one told me about the pain! I tore with my first, BAD, I could barley walk. No one told me about feeding my son, I was trying to breastfeed then I went to formula, turns out I wasn't feeding him enough, and that was rough, I got next to no sleep. 

    I think its silly to make birth plan at a hospital, yeah its a great "idea" and you might have things you'd prefer to take place, but 9 times out 10, it doesn't go as planned, I thought Id be good since I went into labor at home, and then was in active labor by the time I was at the hospital, but I ended up getting an epi that was too much and I couldn't feel ANYTHING, and ended up having a vacuum birth, and the cord was wrapped around his neck. I just feel like moms shouldn't plan so much and just let things go, so when the time comes and you might need a c-section, you won't have the dreaded mommy guilt. I struggled with that FOR SO LONG, bc I couldn't breast feed, and he wasn't eating enough, it was terrible. 

    cakebatter27shanaynerz[Deleted User]
  • I was shocked by the emotional rollercoaster post birth.  Part of it was failure as I saw it then at the birth I wanted.  I pushed for 4 hours, could see our daughter's head, but she was stuck real good in the sunny side up position.  I was exhausted and they got me in for a c section within 15 minutes when I finally relented.  I was upset over that for months.  I would cry over other stuff for no reason whatsoever.  Not looking forward to this.

    The pain was both ways for me: from the c-section and from pushing so long.  The healing process was really long and painful.  I felt the healing was more painful than the labor itself and I went med free until they gave me the spinal for the c-section.

    I had horrible night sweats.  Like drenching the bed because of the hormonal change.

    Breastfeeding is painful!  Those babies can chomp with no teeth.  My nipples bled.  I stuck with it.  I would just grimace while she fed for the first month-6 weeks.  At some point it stopped hurting.  I breastfed her until she was almost 2 with a full mouth of teeth.  Everyone told me I'd stop when she broke her first tooth, but the beginning was so painful that I stopped for nothing.  Teeth were nothing when they came.  I stopped when I got my BFP because she is eating full meals and can sometimes out eat me=)

    The feeling of isolation was awful too in the beginning.  The C-section really prevented me from getting around.  I just felt so lonely with no family around.



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  • Oh, one other thing.  I vomited in labor because the 1st stage went so fast.  I could keep nothing down.



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  • The two things I was amazed with my first pregnancy is the first bowel movement after delivery! OMG!! Horrible. I tore also so that made it worse. If I could have used that squirt bottle 24/7 - even in public I would have. That thing is your best friend!! Also, breast feeding looked so easy! Not for me. My boys didn't latch on very well and my first was tongue tied - so it was really hard. I gave up after 3 weeks.
    With my second, I was amazed how quickly my labor and delivery went compared to my second. And then the contractions DAYS after you delivery. Those were intense!
    But in reality .. I know it's only a couple days out of your whole life and because of the pain and suffering you go thru you have this amazing new life in front of you. All worth it!!
  • No one warned me how sore you can be after birth from the pushing. I pushed for 1.5 hours and was so sore for the next few days I could barely move. Every muscle in my body hurt. It was worse then my recovery after I ran a marathon. 

    I also wish someone had told me to pump more. I breastfed and had a lot of trouble getting my milk to come in. Now I know for next time - pump, pump, pump. At least 15 minutes after every feeding, to stimulate the breast and help the milk come in, for the first few weeks. May not be true for everyone but it would have helped me. 

    The epidural gave me a drugged feeling after awhile, which I wasn't expecting. I remember feeling very surreal and detached while I was pushing. 

    I was very scared about recovering from tearing and my first BM - really nervous - but I personally had no problem with either. I healed well and the first BM was not as big a deal as I feared. The peri bottle is great but I used the NeilMed nasal bottle and preferred it - it squirts water straight up when you squeeze it, which was helpful. 

    If you want to nurse, take full advantage of any breastfeeding support groups, lactation consultants, etc that the hospital offers. Look into if insurance will pay for a home visit from a lactation consultant. 
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  • Well I didn't have the bad experience a lot of these folks did. I wasn't in any pain afterwards, I had little bleeding, no clots, and no tears. I had no problems or pain associated with breast feeding.
    I wasn't prepared for:
    I had high blood pressure which caused them to blow two veins putting an iv in and then they put it in on the other arm then they put the blood pressure cuff on the arm with the blown veins. It was seriously more painful than any contraction I had when thatblood pressure cuff squeezed.
    Every time you move the stupid monitors move from where they are supposed to be and then the nurses have to readjust you.
    After I caved and got the epi, my blood pressure dropped rapidly and I had to throw up in a bed pan over my shoulder.
    I had to wear an oxygen mask because the baby was sleepy.
    They really want you to be able to feel the need to push so they turned down my epi and made me wait about an hour and a half after I was ready to push before letting my push.
    After delivery if your placenta does not cone out automatically the Dr will shove their hand up there and pull it out. It's disgusting and really uncomfortable.
    After delivery I didn't cry or feel any emotion other than Wtf just happened and holy shit there is a baby on my chest. It was very surreal.
    Also my mom, granny, and aunt waited at the hospital all night long (i was admitted at 11 pm and she was born at 9:57)
    No matter how you feel they won't let you go pee by yourself for a little while.
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  •  I had to be induced and though I was told I'd have to be hooked up to a monitor the whole time no one told me how much it'd suck. Just when I'd turn and find a comfy way to lay the nurse would come in and say they lost the baby on the monitor I need to roll the other way. Uggg.

    Overall though the 6wks til sex was a joke. How about 8 wks till it was even possible without tears and even then it sucked. Seriously it didn't feel totally normal til 7 months!!!! I did have an episiotomy though...
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  • I thought that after a c-section they just suctioned all the gunk out of you and you were smooth sailing with minimal bleeding post surgery. 
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  • The night sweats, and the random nighttime shakes/shivers
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  • So, I never had actual contractions (I don't tell a lot of people that) but my water did break and it seems obvious now but it NEVER stopped leaking/gushing until DS came. I had no idea that it just kept coming and coming. I was told that it usually stops with contractions.

    I had a csection and my doctor "cleared me out" as she called it so I had very minimal bleeding and no clots. Also, have someone else in the room if you can besides your husband if things dont go accordingly- which they won't because they never do- it was really nice to talk things through after the doctor left. And lastly, I cried all the time after DS was born- I was genuinely happy and relaxed just couldn't stop crying.
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  • I had a planned c-section so I didn't experience labor. I got a massive spinal headache during the c-section but luckily the anesthesiologist was amazing and gave me drugs quickly that took the headache away immediately. I don't remember too much, thankfully, as I felt like I was in a fog for months. I honestly didn't feel normal until my DD was almost 1. No lie. 
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  • JMCB09JMCB09
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    edited December 2013
    I PROMISE you block it all out. I actually had to sit and thing before typing.

    Edit: spelungz hard
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    cakebatter27Gr8ful_m0m[Deleted User]
  • I thought pregnancy was scary. That first BM scares the shit out of me. Hopefully literally.
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  • The pads with ice stuff in it are amazing, ask them for extras that you can take home with you, and don't be afraid to ask for more of the pads they have there. They are huge and feel a bit like diapers but you need them. And sitz baths, OMGosh so amazing, I did them all the time. As far as the baby nobody told me that there can be a little bit of blood in their diaper the first day or two, when I saw it, I freaked and called the nurse. Totally normal.

    I honestly don't remember how painful it was, labor amnesia is amazing!
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  • Oh yeah, blood in the diaper if you have a girl. And both boys and girls have swollen genitals. The other thing that freaked me out with my newborns is that they can't always coordinate their eyes at first. So they may have one eye open and not the other, or you see their eyes roll around in their head. Freaky but normal.
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  • I had PPD.  Bad.  Thankfully it only lasted a month before I was prescribed Wellbutrin.  I didn't feel like I loved her.  I didn't know what was wrong with me.  No one around me understood and just kept telling me 'you're doing fine!'.  Yes I know I can mechanically do everything, change diapers, feed her, but in my heart I didn't feel anything.  I know it was hormones but even now sometimes I have mommy guilt over not being as affectionate as I could have been during that first month.  I fell in love with her after that but to all the FTMs just know it isn't necessarily automatic the second they lay the baby on your chest.  And that's ok.
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  • Seriously did I go through labor at all? I'm reading and I'm like nope, I didn't have that problem... Or that one or that one or that one...
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  • @neighner20 that was like my daughter's whole first year for me. Thankfully things were much better with my second. But I can definitely relate to the regret. Hopefully it will be smooth sailing for us both this time.
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  • My legs were so weak after pushing for 3 hours - DD was wedged against my hip. Standing was work for a day or so afterwards, but I managed.

    My first poop after the delivery (maybe 3 hours afterwards) was pretty stressful.

    I ended up tearing a bit (DD came out with her cord around her neck and her arm up and keeping it from completely wrapping around her neck) Getting the stitches was so painful even with the local anianesthetic.

    My OB was worried that I was bleeding internally so she kept reaching up insidr after the baby was out. I just wanted the vag left alone so that was painful too.
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  • 1. Nobody really talks about how hard PUSHING a baby out is. You just think 1,2,3 pushes and you'll have your baby.By the time it was time to push , it was late and I was tired. I pushed for 2 hours! It takes everything you've got to get that baby out. Work on you kegels ladies.
    (I can only speak from my experience. There are people who do get to meet there babies only after a few pushes)

    2. Breast feeding ,as mentioned by others, is painful. You and baby will learn together. You may get cracked, bleeding nipples as a result. Don't let that stop you. It gets easier. And the bond and nourishment only you can give your babe makes it all worth it.

    3. Have a pump ready to use when your milk comes in. This will happen 2-3 days after you give birth. Your boobs will be huge and hard like rocks. They will hurt. Being so engorged made it hard for my son latch. I wished I had a pump so that I could release the pressure. I will have one ready this time around.
  • How much I would love colace after. I felt like I had to hold everything in while I was pooping.
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  • They say a lot of people poop when they push. It wasn't true for me though because I had stomach pains while in labor and that helped empty me out before the final scene. But apparently doctors and nurses are used to it, so poop away.

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  • I shook uncontrollably like a heroine addict in withdrawals. Even when I was without meds for the first 30 hours I shook. Then with meds I couldn't keep my arms still. Also, your bed will look like a flipping scene from CSI. I bled so much it was insane. Those nurses are amazing considering what they have to see. Joke with them- it will make things better. If you end up with a c-section, take the smoothest roads possible back home as every speed bump will be amplified. I also didn't know I wouldn't be able to wear pajama pants since my legs were that swollen. Bringing a nightgown this time around.
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