Women who are expecting should take the time to put together realistic birth plans. Some of the women on this list made some... interesting... choices when it came to their own birth plans. Their wishes were sometimes a bit wacky, and this includes a few celebs!
A birth plan is a method of communicating a pregnant woman's wishes to medical personnel, such as doctors, nurses, and midwives. It lets a medical team know what form of labor and birth a woman wants to have. It's also designed to let medical personnel know what an expectant mom doesn't want. This type of plan is a personal one. It should always be a reflection of personal preferences and wishes.
Women who need help getting started with their birth plans should know that there are templates out there which make it easy to get the ball rolling. Pregnant women who read this list will get a sense of what other women are asking for, but they may not want to follow suit. Some of these requests are definitely way out of left field.
Yes, it's smart to ask for what you want, but bear in mind that medical teams have a lot of rules that they need to follow. That's why they can't always honor the most outrageous birth plan wishes.
If you want to use an African birthing swing at the hospital, while you're in labor, you may want to revise your birth plan.
One mom asked her birth team for this and was denied, simply because the hospital didn't have anything to hang the birthing swing off of. These swings are usually hung from trees.
According to Parenting.com, nurses sometimes get a bit weary of these types of unorthodox birth plans. Nurses have seen it all and believe that women who have extensive birth plans are more likely to get C-sections in the end. There is some scientific evidence that this is actually true.
Would it matter to you how contractions were referred to during your labor and delivery? It mattered to one woman, according to Sheknows.com. She wanted contractions to be called pressure waves and added this stipulation to her birth plan. Perhaps she found the term, "pressure waves" less threatening and more comforting. For whatever reason, she didn't want the word, "contractions" used while she was going through labor and delivering her baby.
The problem with this birth plan demand is that medical teams are hard-wired to refer to contractions as contractions. Even if they try to remember to say pressure waves, they may slip up sometimes.
As if labor weren't already uncomfortable enough, this mother wanted cold water poured on her during labor. She asked to be doused in cold water when she got stressed out. Labor is frequently stressful, so that's a lot of cold water!
If I had followed this rule during labor, it would have been like an Ice Bucket Challenge that lasted eighteen full hours.
Maybe this woman hardly ever gets stressed, so it would be more like an occasional cool shower. According to Thebirthhour.com, eating ice chips is common during labor. Having cold water poured on you during contractions is far less common.
One mom didn't want an IV during labor, according to Parenting.com. While the wishes of an expectant mother should be respected, this kind of demand puts medical teams between a rock and hard place. An IV may be necessary to protect a woman's health during labor and delivery.
If you're considering the same request on your birth plan, you may want to do some research. There are often very good reasons to have IVs running during childbirth. Your health is all-important and may impact the health of your unborn baby. IVs deliver medication and fluids. They serve a vital purpose.
It's standard for medical teams to do fetal monitoring during hospital deliveries. Fetal monitoring is a way for doctors, nurses, and midwives to keep tabs on how an unborn baby is doing. If a fetus goes into distress, a medical team will need to come up with a plan of action in seconds.
If the medical team can't monitor the fetus, it'll be harder for the team to make smart decisions.
According to Parenting.com, one mom didn't want fetal monitoring. She requested zero monitoring in her birth plan. Do you think that this was a wise decision? It seems rather risky.
This is a strange one. Labor is an intense process and all of the action happens downstairs, the main connection to the birth canal. Doctors and other medical personnel do need to check out a lady's private parts occasionally during labor to see how much dilation is happening and so on. When they aren't allowed to inspect a woman's intimate areas, it makes their jobs a lot harder.
One woman didn't want any examination of her private parts, according to Parenting.com. This presented challenges for her birth team. Try to be realistic when making a birth plan. Don't ask for stuff that puts extra pressure on medical personnel... or yourself!
Usually, one of the most thrilling parts of childbirth is the gender announcement that comes when the baby is finally out of the birth canal. Most moms-to-be want to know if it's a girl or a boy right away.
One mother-to-be preferred not to hear this announcement. She requested no gender announcement in her birth plan, according to Sheknows.com.
This is the type of request that should be pretty easy for a medical team to honor, so it's ok to ask for it if you want to keep things gender-neutral. However, the medical team will need to record the baby's gender on charts and things like that.
There are lots of different reasons why a woman might decide that she doesn't want her mother in the delivery room. It's not always a diss on the grandma-to-be. One woman who requested that her mother not be allowed in the delivery room had her wish granted, as per her birth plan, according to Globalnews.ca.
A woman who's in labor should be able to decide which family members are there with her.
A mom-to-be might not want her mother there because she doesn't want her sensitive mother to see her in so much pain, or something like that. While it sounds bad, there may be compassionate and sensible reasons for making that type of decision. It's still a bit out of the norm, though.
One woman channeled Cookie Monster while writing up her birth plan. She demanded cookies as soon as her baby was born, according to Sheknows.com. She had good reason for wanting the sweet treats. She'd been dealing with gestational diabetes throughout her pregnancy, which meant that sugar was not permitted. She actually packed her own cookies (Milanos) in her "go bag" before heading for the hospital.
This is a fairly easy wish for medical personnel to grant, unless there are complications during labor which necessitate surgery. It's still kind of a frivolous request, though, and you don't want your birth plan to be full of too many frivolous details. That could have easily been a request for hubby to fulfill...
One woman wanted her baby-daddy in the room during labor... but totally unclothed!
With a home birth, this might be feasible, but it's not really realistic for a hospital birth. It's actually against the law to be unclothed in public and a hospital is a public place. Plus, the lack of clothes might make a woman's medical team feel very uncomfortable.
According to Kangaroomothercare.com, skin-to-skin contact between a dad and newborn is beneficial. This may be why this particular mom-to-be wanted the father of her baby to be undressed during labor. It might be better to get a dad to take his shirt off and then cuddle the baby. He doesn't need to take off everything.
During labor, people are going to get in your personal space, unless you're having your baby alone in an empty mansion, like a certain character in The Handmaid's Tale. When you're in labor, you're probably going to be very glad that people are around you, helping you to get through it.
For example, your partner might rub your lower back when it aches, or walk the hospital halls with you. A doctor might get close to check your vitals or assess your level of dilation. A nurse might give you ice chips or sips of water. According to Sheknows.com, one mom did not want anyone in her "bubble" of personal space. To each their own...
This request may seem fairly tame, but the mom-to-be in question wanted rainbow images everywhere in the delivery room. It's not like she wanted just one rainbow poster or something like that. After reading about this mom's wishes, I became curious about the symbolism of rainbows. They are obviously cheery, but what do they really mean?
According to Whats-your-sign.com, they are symbols of "new life". That's fitting, isn't it?
After discovering the symbolism of rainbows, this expectant mom's request makes more sense, but decorating a delivery room to this extent might not be practical in some cases. Hospitals are different than private homes...
If you're considering this type of birth plan request, do a lot of research before you add it to your birth plan.
Babies get vitamin K shots after they're delivered because they have trouble clotting blood. The injection of vitamin K helps them to clot blood. It's given to protect them from health problems.
According to Besteverbaby.com, this type of shot has been given to newborn babies since 1961. Yes, some moms are opting out on behalf of their babies, in part because the injections contain aluminum, but there are many reasons to believe in vitamin K shots for newborns.
One woman had her typical birth plan and another separate birth plan for her placenta.
According to Euphoricherbals.com, birth plans for placentas aren't really that uncommon. It's kind of a crunchy thing. Some women want to turn the placentas into capsules and then eat them. There are doctors who aren't too wild about this trendy practice, so it's really smart to talk to your OBGYN about the placenta (and whether or not you should consume it) long before you put together a birth plan. Women make birth plans for their placentas to ensure that they are stored correctly after they come out of the birth canal.
In hospital lore, if a woman writes up a birth plan requesting no C-section, she's greatly increasing her odds of having a C-section. Many women do put this request in their birth plans, but stuff happens during labor, and lots of women end up being wheeled into the OR for C-sections anyway. It's about the baby's health.
If a C-section is needed to deliver a healthy baby, then what can you do? It's obviously the right thing to do, for the sake of the baby. According to Cdc.gov, there were 1,258,581 C-sections performed in the USA in 2017. They are fairly common occurrences, birth plan or not.
This woman was joking. There are some hilarious parody birth plans out there, some of which women have actually been given to hospital personnel, just for a laugh. Pellegrino water is sparkling and delicious, but this mom surely had her tongue firmly in her cheek when she requested a fancy Pellegrino bath for her newborn, according to Mcsweeneys.net.
If you want to entertain yourself and others, why not write up a parody birth plan of your own?
Then, write up a real one that doesn't include a lot of unrealistic elements. Realistic birth plans are really important. Women with extensive and unrealistic birth plans sometimes get labelled as "birthzillas" (in the vein of their finicky sister, the "bridezilla").
The hilarious parody birth plan posted at Mcsweeneys.net also requests that medical personnel ask themselves, "What would Gwyneth Paltrow do?" when faced with tough questions during labor and delivery.
Gwyneth is the type of woman who seems more likely to have an extensive birth plan. However, Gwyneth actually feels that moms who stress too much about having ideal pregnancies or births end up having more difficult deliveries. It's like they are carrying too much anxiety, as well as unrealistic expectations.
A birth plan should include the basics. Anything that you feel strongly about should be in there. It doesn't have to be a personal manifesto.
Mariah is a diva and we love that. She's all sparkly and talented.
During labor, she wanted to listen to her own music. That is so diva. Her Mariah Carey track of choice was "Fantasy", according to Nme.com. She went for the live version.
I expect nothing less from Mariah. She was giving birth to twins, so who would deny her the opportunity to listen to her own four-octave voice between contractions? Mariah's twins are named Monroe and Morrocan. She had a boy and a girl, and the father of her twins is Nick Cannon. She and Nick are no longer together.
Kelly wanted a silent labor and delivery. Imagine this for a moment.
If you've actually given birth, you may take a moment to contemplate just how difficult it would be to get through an entire labor and delivery without making a single sound.
That's crazy pressure on a woman, but Kelly went for it, for religious reasons, according to Eonline.com.
Kelly says you can moan and stuff while you're doing the silent birth. You just can't use words. This type of labor is about bringing newborns into the gentlest possible environment. Kelly is involved in the same religion as her hubby, John Travolta.
This request from former VS angel, Miranda Kerr, wasn't too crazy, but it meant that Orlando Bloom had to spend plenty of time in the labor room. Women do need moral support when they are giving birth. I'm sure Orlando didn't mind complying with the wishes of his beautiful then-wife. They have a son named Flynn.
These days, Miranda is married to the Snapchat guy. Orlando is getting very close to Katy Perry, with whom he's had an on-off relationship, according to Refinery29.com. Miranda had a baby with her new husband and seems very happy. Orlando hasn't remarried...yet, but you never know what will happen in the future.
Sources: Parenting.com, Globalnews.ca, Sheknows.com, Thebirthhour.com, Euphoricherbals.com, Kangaroomothercare.com, Mcsweeneys.net, Nme.com, Eonline.com,Refinery29.com