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Older Children in the Delivery Room?
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Older Children in the Delivery Room?

I am just curious how many of you ladies are having/had your older children in the delivery room while you gave birth. My son is only 3 1/2 and will not be there for the actual delivery, but will be for the early part of labor. He cannot stand to see me in pain so I won't be putting him through that. I know it depends on the age and the child itself, if they could handle it, but I am just wondering what other people have/had done or if you are considering it or not.
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Avatar_f_tn
I would never have my child in the delivery room, while i was in labor. I would leave him/her with the grand parents.... Even when they are older i think it is a trammatizing experiance on any child younger then 16....... I dont think its "normal" to have your child watch you push something out..... I think thats kind of gross. In my point of view, when they are old enough to understnd the stages/process of labor, and only if they "ok" it, and WANT to watch you be in labor.push should they be allowed. I really wouldnt want my child telling other ppl how mommy was pushing his sister out of her B*tt............ i do not see anything ok with this. Altho, i would love to have my child  come stay with me after giving birth, for bonding as a family and such. :)
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Avatar_f_tn
During early labor, i would have to be at home, so anyways my child would see me in pain. Our hospitals here will send you home if its early labor........... just thought id point that out. ..... but the painful part/panting..... no i wouldnt ever want my child to think that mommy is in pain.
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1102149_tn?1259696562
This a tough one because it all depends on how your children are raised and how much info you provide.  I have a daughter whom is 6 and although I am not pregnant, if I were I would have her in the room with me and my husband (depends on when it is all happening). Although my daughter does not know the details about conception, she does know and understand how babies are brought into the world.  It all depends on how you view the whole process. I don't view delevery as gross and I think it is a shame that so many people protect their children from such natural processes.

This is a difficult question because everyone feels differently about thier own body, how much thier children should know and just has different views all together in how thier kids are raised.  At the end it is what you are comfortable with and what your child knows and understands at this point, 3 1/2 may be a bit young.

Good luck with your decision.
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1039620_tn?1272597604
I agree that early labor will be done at home, (I was already 5 cm dilated with my son when I finally went into the hospital)  though my mom will be coming over to keep him occupied and to watch him when I do go to the hospital and she will bring him when it is all over with (if it's not in the middle of the night).

The reason I posted this was because I've been seeing and reading how this is becoming the 'norm' and I also feel it might be a little traumatizing for the child to see the actual birth (depending on family and age, of course).

My OB actually had brought up who would be in the room and that's what got me thinking about it. I never would have thought anyone would considering it, especially at my son's age, but she said that a lot of people do, which is surprising to me.
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Avatar_f_tn
Yeah, i know, some people bring the whole crew..... i mean parents/cousins. u name it. I think its a intimate time for the dad and mom, not the family.............. and no its not shameful to protect your child from this dramatic event........ then we all wonder why our kids get pregn. at 15...... um u guessed it, they know waaay too much for there little minds to handle.
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Avatar_f_tn
No i did not say i view it as gross. I said for the child its a little much. I view it as bringing life into the world. I believe its the most wonderful thing to happen to a couple. Its not "shameful" to protect my child from this event. When my child will be older and WANTS to know where babies come from i will gladly tell her. There is a time and a place for everything. I do not want to cram my childs head with things she can learn when she questions it. She wants to know something ill let her know. I think there is an appropriate age for everything. Just like with anything else in this world...... or in the US anyway.
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1194973_tn?1385507504
It might actually be better for the family to teach the child about it. They learn it in school's anyways. And at early ages. Children also do not get pregnant just because they learn about it. They might be doing it because of lack of knowledge. In the end it is up to how comfortable the family is and what their views are. (Sorry for going off topic.)
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719902_tn?1334168783
I read a great book, Baby Catcher about a midwife and many of her deliveries were home deliveries with children present.  Sounds very nice.  Personally I wouldn't.  My 15 y/o sis was there when i had my 1st tho, and i think it was very good for her! LoL
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906115_tn?1344204109
With all my last three births well except for the c-section the kids were there and they were very little! My oldest was 3 and the two went down from there. They saw their abby sister being born and after that my son said he wanted to be an OB! How cute:) Now my children are 12,11, and 10 and they will be with their dad for the summer, I am not srue how ot wrkk them being able to see the baby when it is born. But I would like them there! My girls the two youngest have watched movies in school already about child birth and I was soooo disapointed in the school system for what they showed them! It was a animated woman and showed bad positions. I plan on showing them vidoes off you tube of natural birth. I have already talked to them about it, all three of them. I do not want them to ahve the wordly medical ideas that birth is painful and full of interventions with woman screaming and yelling at their husbands like in the movies! I do not want them hearing horror stories. BIrth is a natural thing and if my girls aer ever to know and son for that matter that it is beautiful and natural they will not know unless I tell them and show them myself. If they can not be there I will be vidoe taping the whole thing for them to watch. I am sure my son will not want to see mom's privates but he has seen me nurse in the past. This world has already given them more imput then me so afr and that is not how it should be. They know that waves are painful but it is the body working to bring the baby down and they all know how very special thier births were to me and I loved it every monute of it good and bad!

I think it is OK if the parents both are willing to be open to the children about birth and how natural and beautiful it is. Of course it is not for everyone but if mine can come they will and it will be a memory they will never forget at their ages getting to see thier baby brother take his first breath. The older two temember when their last sister was born and getting to hold her and they say how they are glad. She died shortly after birth and if they were not in there they would of never gotten to see her alive. Now if something goes wrong with the birth like bleeding or something I  do not feel that children should be in there at all as that wouuld be scary and hard to process in their imature minds but children can handle more then we give them credit for I think.
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972246_tn?1311092135
Okay, I am going to respond to this with an open mind. And respect everyones thoughts and opinions.

I have a 9 year old daughter. 2 years ago when I found out I was having a child, knowing it would be such a shock for her to have to share me with another child. I made sure she was involved. She went to most of my appointments with me. And she really injoyed being their. My child is old enough to understand what is going on. And I would say she is very mature for her age.

Also she was in the room when I delivered. She was NOT stairing at my privet area. But she was off to the side with a video camera. Maybe I am a crazy parent. But she never one time said it was sick or gross. She thought it was really cool, and was so proud that I let her in the room.

Now if my daughter was only 3 or 4 then I would say no way. But I guess it has to be your judgement.

A comment was made about it trammatizing experiance .. Well it was not at all for my daughter. And even after I gave birth, I took a moment with just her, and I asked her if seeing that, would that change her mind about ever having children of her own when she is older. And she said no way... She thought it was a really cool thing,.

Now my daughter is so close with my baby. Its kind of weird. And in a way, I think it was a bonding experance for her.

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Avatar_f_tn
Everyone has very different views and thoughts on this. Depending on how mature/advanced your child is, will give you a clue whether or not to have kids in the delivery room with you.  
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202436_tn?1326477933
A lot of people don't believe in this but I have always had my older kids in the room.  With the exception of my 2nd child.  My oldest was spending a couple weeks with grama and it turned out to be a blessing becuaes our son was stillborn.  BUT, with all of my subsequent births I have had my older ones there.  My oldest was 7 when her sister was born, she was there up to the point of me pushing the baby out.  I had no drugs on that one and she actually heard me yelling from the waiting room but I had prepared her for all of that so it didn't bother her, she sat out there and drew pictures for her new sister.  With my next child I had my then 8 yo and my 14 mos old.  With my last one I had my 12 yo, 5 yo and 4 yo there. I prepared them by having them watch the l & d shows on TLC and discovery health and explained the process to them.  They thought it was absolutely awesome to see their brother born and to be able to hold him right away.  They were in the room for the actually birth but were positioned in such a way that they didn't actually SEE him coming out.  I'm of two minds about doing it this time only becuase there will be 4  of them and the rooms aren't but so big.  My oldes, who will be 14 when this one is born, is really wanting to see this one born as well.  We have some beautiful pictures/memories of them.
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1039620_tn?1272597604
I think the biggest thing is the child/children themselves. My son HATES to see me in any kind of pain whatsoever. Right after I found out I was pregnant I fell in our backyard and broke my ankle. It was only him and I at home at the time. I had to crawl to the house on my hands and knees to get to the phone. He rode in the ambulance with me and had to stay there until my DH could get there from work. Ever since then, he cries every time I have tried to take him to an ultrasound at the hospital.

The only reason I mentioned traumatizing is because of how HE feels about my pain, not other people's children.

I had a feeling this would bring strong opinions and I think that's wonderful. I like hearing how other people do things and how they feel. It's what makes this a great community.
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906115_tn?1344204109
Poor little guy to have seen you get hurt and go in the ambulance and all! See each child has there own experiences that mold them and emotional bounderies! Each family has to make their own decision on this! What worked for me and my driving force was based on my own experiences and my childrens emotional bounderies.


it is true that all the decisions are wonderful on this as each parent decides what is best for their family and handles it in their own way. THese desisions are what mold and shape our family's!

I would say that your little guy would not be able to handle a birth but will love seeing the new baby afterwards and that mommy is OK:)
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1199169_tn?1268270734
I have a 9 1/2 year old and a 1 1/2 year old, I have given my 9 year old the option of being in the delivery room.  I plan on her being completely informed prior to the birth, by videos, books, tv shows..etc...although at 9 she is pretty knowledgeable about the "birds and the bees"  In my personal opinion, giving birth is a natural part of life and my hopes are that this is going to be a positive experience for her.  My (at that time closer to 2 yr old) will not be there, she'll be with grandparents....that would be total chaos....I can see her now taking the Dr's forceps and beelining it for the nearest exit...NO WAY! lol
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470885_tn?1326332637
N-O.  Actually, the hospital where I had both my sons doesn't allow children in the birthing room - they must remain the waiting room and be supervised at all times.  Children under 13 are not even permitted to vist the childbirth ward of the hospital - unless they are siblings of the newborn.

DS no. 1 stayed with my in-laws while I was giving birth in January.  We ended up having DS no. 2 at nearly midnight, so they brought our oldest to the hospital to meet his brother the next day.  

Even if the hospital had permitted children in the room during labour and delivery, I wouldn't have had DS there - he would have been upset and I needed to be able to focus on the task at hand...and have DH there completely for me, not distracted by trying to watch DS!!
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376739_tn?1317669990
I think I have the unpopular opinion here. It actually is not very traumatizing at all. Birth is a natural process and many women have their 3-year-olds + at their deliveries. These children are not horrified or traumatized. For the most part they have been involved with the pregnancy and may know more about the process than kids who are kept in the dark about it. It is one thing to not talk about it with your child and go into labor and delivery with them as a witness and quite another to educate them on what is going to happen and what to expect.

My daughters watched birth videos and they were fascinated, not grossed out or horrified. Why must we put labor and delivery in the closet as some taboo, nasty thing? It's a natural function of the human body that is both amazing and beautiful. They would get to see their baby sister/brother come into the world. It actually helps to create a deep bonding experience between the siblings.

That being said my husband wouldn't agree to let our oldest be present and I think it was against hospital policy. But had we agreed on it she would've been there. She even asked to be there but I told her the hospital just wanted Daddy there. If she had been there she also would've been by my head; no full frontal view.

I'm sorry but I just don't agree that it is traumatizing unless your child is ill prepared and has no idea what is going on.
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376739_tn?1317669990
Victoria- if your son gets scared by seeing you in pain then it might be very scary for him. You could always try to show him videos or talk about the process in an easy-to-understand manner and kind of feel for his reaction. If he seems scared of what you're telling him then it probably isn't a good idea to have him at the delivery. Some things that he might understand- "When the baby comes out of Mommy's tummy it is going to hurt for a little bit. But then the baby will be out and Mommy will be all better!"

People who have their children there for L&D usually have someone designated as the babysitter and they have toys, snacks, drinks, movies, etc. And the babysitter can always take them out if they get overtired, upset, etc.
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202436_tn?1326477933
I agree with Joy 100% that it is NOT a traumatizing experience if you prepare your children ahead of time.  I talked with my kids, had them watch the birthing shows, I explained to them what happeneds.  I even prepared them for the chance that something may go wrong and I would have to be swept away for a c-section.  Being as I had one before I was able to show them the scar and explain it to them.  I bought them each little backpacks and we packed their gameboys, games, extra batteries, small toys, coloring stuff, books, snacks and drinks. When the time came, I grabbed my bags and they grabbed theres.  They were SO excited.  They kept asking, when is he gonna come out?  After he was born we ALL got a huge laugh becuase my then 5 yo daughter says "He's got a BIG penis".  We got it on video, it was just classic!!!   My husband was the designated "babysitter"  but then again I've been in labor enough times that I don't really need him to be right there.  Frankly, most of the time I'd rather just be left alone.  It was a very pleasant experience and I have a wonderful picture of me sitting on the bed holding my youngest son with my other 3 gathered around.

It isn't for everyone, but I, like Joy, do not feel it is something that shoudl be made taboo.
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Avatar_f_tn
I think it is ok! I was in the delivery room with my mum an now I am studying to be a midwife I think it is a beautiful experience! And the kids need to learn about it sooner or later. I think as long as the kid is not freaking out then it is fine:-)
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756023_tn?1338524035
The maternity ward here does not allow children (not sure the age) in the delivery room.  They are to remain in the waiting room supervised at all times.  Anika was 2.5 years when iliana was born. She stayed with my in-laws and they brought her in to see iliana and I in the morning (gave birth at 5am).  I, myself, would have had her in the room with us supervised by my MIL.  My hubby on the other hand, was not comfortable with it (even if she was allowed in).  I think it's how you and your partner feel about it.    

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1146463_tn?1319112478
When I had my second baby, my oldest was only 20 months and had NEVER been away from me. So she was there for the whole thing...of course I go fast and all natural without screaming so I think that made it easier. I think if I would have screamed I think it would have def. freaked her out!!! Just wanted to share that good luck with everything!!
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