What options do I have for providers?

You have several options when it comes to your provider during pregnancy, but what are they?

Did you know that the perfect provider is out there for you? For me and this pregnancy, I am my perfect provider. I listen to myself, I do my own prenatal testing and I am happy with my care. Those are all the same things you should expect from your perfect provider.

Let’s break down each birth provider and see which one will be your perfect provider.

*** Disclosure ***

I am in no way against you getting care. There is a provider for everyone, yourself included. I don’t think that all providers are bad or don’t care about you and your baby. I do know that we have seen several examples of when people are ignored and their needs aren’t met. If you are a provider reading this I hope you understand it may not be you we are speaking about but if you feel that you can improve then I encourage you to do so. All we want is a provider to give evidence-based information and care, we want to be heard and understood, we want the care we deserve.

Find a provider or go unassisted but it is important to know you have options. Hire an OB/GYN, Midwife or go unassisted the choice is yours.

OBGYN

Obgyn stands for obstetrics and gynecology. Obstetrics is defined as the branch of medicine and surgery concerned with childbirth. Gynecology is the branch of medicine which deals with the functions and diseases specific to women and girls, especially those affecting the reproductive system. At the end of the day, they are trained SURGEONS!

Your birth plan should be discussed from the start. You will want to know where they stand and really listen to them speak. Watch for those signs that what you saying and how they are answering are not the same.

Midwife

A midwife is another option but you should know there are several types. including:

  • LM is a licensed midwife.
  • CPM is a certified professional midwife.
  • CNM is a certified nurse midwife.
  • CM is a certified midwife.
  • DEM is a direct-entry midwife.
  • Lay midwife is a “hobby” midwife, and this term is commonly offensive to many midwives, but some may address themselves as such.
  • Traditional Birth Attendants or TBAs are typically unlicensed, educated birth professionals that may address themselves as Birth Workers, Birth Keepers, Birth Witnesses, etc. They may prefer to be unlicensed because of the licensing restrictions many midwives face.

Midwives also have now gotten to the point of being so regulated that they have a hard time being the midwives our ancestors used. Now if you have any of the following “concerns” you are turned away and sent back to seek medical attention and dropped from care. Imagine that some of these can resolve on their own or be no cause for concern if monitored but because of such strict regulations they have no choice, at this point for many they become MEDwives.

Reasons to transfer before birth
  • Breech baby at term
  • Multiples
  • GD
  • Pre-E signs
  • Prolonged rupture of membranes
  • Maternal Fever 
  • Signs of fetal or maternal distress
  • Birthing before 37 weeks
  • Being “overdue” – 42 weeks gestation
  • Maternal exhaustion
  • Hypertension
  • Anemic at term
  • Elevated Blood pressure
  • Position of baby
  • Placenta previa
  • IUGR
  • Meconium stained waters when membranes release
  • Stage 2 (pushing) for over 2 hours
  • Epileptic episodes
  • Diabetes
  • VBAC births
  • Low platelets
  • Active genital herpes
  • Refusing vaginal checks
  • Stalled labor
  • Midwife personal family issues
  • Overbooked of the month
  • Personality/Relationship clash

Reasons for postpartum transfer
  • Low birth weight of the baby
  • Postpartum bleeding
  • Tears
  • Retained placenta

I get it I really do. I know birth can seem scary but when you are a trained medical professional in any capacity you should be able to handle most of these. Major surgery shouldn’t be the first option. A full discussion should take place, steps to try and resolve the issue at hand should be taken. I absolutely love midwives and great prenatal, postpartum and births with midwives. I even had a great experience with an ob-gyn, why? Well because I was vocal, I made it clear what I wanted and made sure to speak up when it wasn’t going that way.

Unassisted

It wouldn’t be fair if I didn’t bring up unassisted births in your birth options and finding the perfect provider. Having an unassisted birth isn’t something to go into blindly. It is something you want to research and become really educated on. You want to know signs to look for in pregnancy, birth and postpartum. You want to look into your fears and accept them but not let them take over your life. Those fears need to be addressed.

After my last birth, giving birth unassisted on my bathroom floor, it had me wanting to try the experience all over again. I wanted to be able to do my own prenatal care, give birth how I wanted and let my baby tell me when it is “go” time. Today I am 30ish weeks, with a baby who is sitting breech and no worries. I know the baby will come out whether it is feet first or head first when the time arrives. My iron is a little low and I am working on that. I have the herbs on hand in case I start to hemorrhage and I trust the knowledge both my husband and I have gathered has prepared us.

I need you to know I am not afraid to ask for help if I know I need it. I have done it before during this pregnancy. I do not consider myself a failure if I need to transfer care. I will not risk my life or the life of my unborn child just to prove I can have an unassisted birth. I have already done it, I know I can.

The perfect provider

The perfect provider for each and every one of us is out there. Some times it takes a little work to find the right one, sometimes you have the right one from the start.

I also want to add this special note. It is something I tell all of my birth clients because I feel that it is something they need to know and then remember. Just because you hire one provider it doesn’t mean that is the perfect provider for you. If it doesn’t work out then please do yourself the favor and fire them. Find someone else or go unassisted.

You can read more about going unassisted around my blog. You have plenty of information to help you get started on your research. We also welcome you to join our online community.

What do you look for when looking for the perfect provider?