“At which point during pregnancy is it advisable to make contact with a midwife?”
As soon as the pregnancy is confirmed it makes sense to contact a midwife – in order to talk about which path you want to take. The earlier, the better. There is, however, never a point at which it is “too late“.
“I have numerous guidebooks to pregnancy and giving birth at home. Should I read them all?”
Please don’t! Too much information is too much of a good thing. Instead take to heart my „What you can do for yourself“ list. In the antenatal classes, which you are recommended to attend between week 31 and week 34, you will find out everything you need to know about pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period.
“Despite the fact that I always wanted children, I was taken by surprise by the pregnancy and at the beginning I couldn’t really be happy about it. Will this have a negative impact on my child?”
You should first of all know that you are not alone with these feelings! Many pregnant women feel the same way. Fact is: Only some two out of ten children are planned. All the others “just happened“. It’s practical that a woman is pregnant for nine months, during this time she has time get used to the idea of having a child. This also means: It does not have a negative impact on the child if you need time to welcome the baby and become happy about the idea of having the baby.
“I have the feeling that my partner isn’t dealing very well with the changes in and on my body…”
Pregnancy naturally brings about major physical changes and has a major impact on the partnership. Here communication with each other is crucial. I, as a midwife, feel responsible to “translate“ the feelings of the woman and communicate these to her partner. Most partners only want one thing: That the woman and baby are doing okay. For this reason, it is especially important to me that the partners take part in the antenatal classes. Here they learn how and with what they can support their female partner – during and also after the birth.
“If I’m honest, I have to say: I am worried about the birth. Is a home birth an option for me at all?”
The fact that you are uncertain is completely normal! Where the birth should take place and what the best option for you is, you will find out over the course of the pregnancy and with the advice of your midwife. Actually: There isn’t just one right way. The right way is only the right way when you are happy with the decision.
“Will you understand if shortly before the birth I decide to go for another option – for example, decide to have the baby in hospital rather than at home?”
Don’t worry: You will always have all options open. Nothing is set in stone. A birth is a dynamic process. It might be the case that a woman that absolutely wanted to give birth in hospital then wants to have a home birth, or vice versa. It is important to think flexibly – and act flexibly.
“And what if it is necessary to get medical help?”
I work in an expansive network and work closely together with lots of different professionals – for example, gynaecologists, paediatricians, osteopaths or physiotherapists. If it is necessary to get their help during the pregnancy, birth or in the postnatal period, this network can be activated immediately.
“Is it possible to have a water birth or a birth on a birthing stool?”
Everything is possible. You should bear in mind, however, that you will only know during the birth what is good for you. It is possible that you are very interested in having a water birth, but during the birth you don’t feel comfortable in water. In any case, you have the possibility during labour to try out different forms of birthing aids.
“Do we need to renovate our apartment in order to have a home birth? Do we need extra equipment?”
Don’t worry: you only need a few square metres for the birth. The midwife has all the necessary medical utensils with her. Where you give birth in the end is decided during the birth. It is important to have a source of heat– both the woman and baby shouldn’t have to freeze during the birth. Everything else, like sheets or a bowl, you’ll have at home anyway. And: After having a home birth there is no need to renovate the house either – and your partner won’t even need to clean either. It is a lot less trouble than a future birthday party for your child!