Woman Passes Driving Test While in Labor, Then Drives to Hospital


pregnantEmma French has an amazing labor and delivery story for sure. The 20-year-old had failed her driving test a few months back and had been waiting for the day when she could finally take it again. When that day came, however, she was in labor. That didn't stop French.

According to a story in the Mirror, even though she was in full labor -- with contractions just 10 minutes apart -- she was bound and determined to take that driving test, and take it she did without giving any indication to the administrator of the test of her condition. She passed too, then drove herself right on to the hospital where she delivered her little girl, Eva MacFarlane, six hours later.

She told the paper:

Everyone was telling me to go to the hospital but I had waited so long for my driving test, I was determined to do it. I didn’t dare tell the examiner I was in labour in case he made me cancel the test.

Impressive, yes. I love the display of womanly strength and determination, and I'm confident she's a much tougher woman than I. But I would have rather seen her head to the hospital. Her water had broken more than four hours before the 8:40 a.m. test, and despite pleas from her family, she still went to take it. She ended up having plenty of time, but there's no way she could have known that. Sometimes things go wrong when you're in labor, and putting off medical care (or care of a midwife or whatever your birth plan involves) for something like a driving test seems a bit irresponsible both for her baby and for others on the road.

French, however, credits her labor with helping her pass. “And one good thing about being in labour that day -- it really killed my pre-test nerves,” she said.

Fortunately she had a happy ending and today she has a beautiful, healthy little girl. But while she may have a good story to tell now, it could have easily had a less-than-happy ending, and I don't think the risk of that was worth it.

Do you think it was irresponsible for this woman to take a driving test when she was in labor?

Image via koadmunkee/Flickr

complications, delivery, is it safe, labor, labor & delivery


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Kritika Kritika

That doesn't sound like a woman with strength and determination. It sounds like a stubborn, immature 20 year old getting her drivers license at any expense. Where are her priorities?

Doomy234 Doomy234

Im glad everything ended well. But I think it wasnt very smart. What if she had a particularly painful contraction while she had been driving and swerved off the road, or hit the accelerator and slammed into somebody?

There is no reason she couldnt have waited another week to get her license, just to ensure the safe arrival of her and her baby.

nonmember avatar Gertie

What is wrong with people?

Rachel Schiller

Clearly she wasn't in that much pain and clearly she knew how to drive. It really isn't that big of a deal.

miche... micheledo

Good grief.  Every woman is different and every labor is different.  I think it is ridiculous when women run to the hospital in pain from contractions that are still far apart - but then I don't really know what they are experiencing, do I??

Sounds like she dealt with the contractions just fine if the instructor didn't notice anything.  If she even winced he probably would have been asking her if she was ok (seeing as she was full term!).

With my last baby I wasn't even sure if I was really in labor.  They hurt, but weren't THAT bad.  I ended up being 9 1/2 cm. when I decided to at least get checked.  Baby was born 30-45 minutes later.

GirlN... GirlNamedBillie

A women tuned into her body knows when birth is close. Both times I knew exactly when I needed to go to the hospital, if she was composed enough to take a driving test, she was fine.

Courtney Paige Neale

I agree with the last 3 commentors. I think we need to give the young woman more credit for knowing her body and what she is capable of. Obviously, she was right.

comf comf

I think she is perfectly fine. Giving birth is not some terrible, dangerous thing we need drs to save us from. She seems a lot smarter than you...

momto... momtolittleg

When contractions are 10 minutes apart, most women have no idea that they are IN labor.  I could've passed a driving test when mine were 3 minutes apart- they weren't that painful.

nonmember avatar guessmyname

eh.. I was driving while "in labor" contractions were 5 minutes apart lasting 30-45 seconds.. they were not that bad and I knew I was NO WHERE near ready to the hospital. I had errands that had to be run, I had to take my husband in to work. .. people need to quit assuming that the women in these stories of "great strength" where the ladies dont go running to the hospital at the first sign of labor, had bad contractions, are bad moms, etc... not everyone is doubled over in pain while in labor.. *I will add, my DD wasnt born for another 20 something hours after I was driving for an hour or two off and on*

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