Mom-to-Be Doesn't Want Husband at Birth

Say What!? 72

delivery roomThere are people I definitely didn't want in the delivery room with me when I was having my babies. My dad. My mother-in-law. Friends. Exes. You get the idea. In fact, the only person I wanted there was my husband. I needed him for support. I wanted him to be the first to see our babies. I needed him to make sure I stayed focused. I wanted him to experience the birth as much as he could. But some women don't want their husband there at all.

An anonymous mom doesn't want her husband at the birth of their second child because she said the first time he was "useless." Now you know why she wants to remain anonymous.

This mama, however, also said that he "didn't do anything I had asked him to do prior to labor, sat in a chair, and basically gawked awkwardly at the painful experience." She shared that it made her more nervous and upset to have him there. She would rather have a doula there for support and have hubby see baby once born. Kind of like what they did in the olden days.

The advice columnist Carolyn Hax told this one to hire the doula regardless. I couldn't agree more. A doula is there to empower and help dad, too, so maybe this time he will take it all more seriously and be able to be there as his wife needs him. Hax also suggested they should talk it out ... gently. No need to have the dad's feelings hurt. Maybe he genuinely didn't know he was being "useless." The biggest thing I'm worried about is if telling the dad that she doesn't want him there makes him really upset. Could cause some strife in the house -- definitely not something a mom-to-be needs or even the dad for that matter during what should be a happy time in their lives.

My advice? Hire the doula and talk to her about how she wants her husband to be a better birth partner. Get him the book The Birth Parnter by Penny Simkin. Going into it with an open heart and mind, and put the past in the past. I'm sure a lot has changed in him since the first baby. And maybe he will surprise you. Good luck -- no matter how it turns out.

What advice would you give this mom-to-be about her "useless" husband in the delivery room? Who do you want in the delivery room with you?

Image via koadmunkee/Flickr

delivery, labor & delivery, fathers


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RanaA... RanaAurora

She needs to hire a doula who can teach him how to be helpful. It's his baby too, and he deserves to be there for their entrance to the world.

Miche... Michelephant

The dad might have just been really freaked out the first time.  How many women go into the delivery room and then things start happening so fast (especially for the first baby) and the birth plan just flies out the window.  I agree that a doula could help the husband focus more on the task at hand and keep him from getting nervous.

Heath... HeatherMazzone

How do we know he wants help being helpful though? Maybe he sat there I'm a chair being ”useless” bc he's a shitty husband. I understand that its his child too but at the end of the day the mom is the one going through everything and its important for her to feel as comfortable as possible and not feel gawked at by the one person who should be supporting her the most. And as the father and husband, he shouldn't need help figuring out how to be supportive and not sit on his ass and stare.

Heather Tidwell Wells

Even if he is "lazy" this time around.. she will have the doula to help. So its a win win.. dad gets to be there and be lazy.. and mom gets the help she NEEDS and wants.. with out feeling like dad is a bum. :) 

tabbi... tabbie-kat

I agree the dad may have been a lil freaked out himself. My husband didnt know what all to do with our first birth, he was anxious and stuff and hadnt read up as much as i had. but he was by my side the whole time during pushing. with our second child, i told my husband the entire pregnancy that this baby was either coming early or really fast. well sure enough she pushed straight out. i labored for almost 12 hours, had light epi and was breathing through contractions myself. hubby watched tv and played on the camera for a bit not even knowing i was contracting. then i held out pushing until the doc could get set up, then bam 2 pushes and baby was out, he barely made it over to get it on camera lol. some people just dont know how to be supportive or know what to do. but you should at least give them a chance, and voice your opinions to them, they are not mind readers and men need to be lead a lil more lol.

nonmember avatar Michelle

I almost feel a bit sad for this really have to teach someone something like this? My husband had never been through a birth either and he was AMAZING...there is no other person I would have wanted to go through that experience with than him (and he WAS the only other person mother-in-law, no friends, no co-workers!). Maybe I am just blessed with an awesome partner in life but the fact that she couldn't even talk to her husband about this is what makes me sad about it. And then then went on to have another child with him! Hmmmm...

bills... billsfan1104

I agree with most of the commentors.  He could of been freaked out the first time around.  Theey should hire a doula or the pregnant in heels chick, and talk it out, before the birth.  Because if I was him, I would be pissed, if my wife kicked me out, and I didnt have the chance to correct y actions.

Todd Vrancic

As a guy who didn't see any of his kids born, I think this woman is within her rights.  With our first, before I married my wife, she wanted her mother there.  With our second, there were issues, but she was able to have both her mother and my mother there.  I came in after our second was born and thought I was being so cool and collected and did not understand why my mother and mother-in-law were laughing at me.  With our third, my wife needed a C-section like she had with our first and the only one allowed in the OR was my mother-in-law.  I was with my wife in the recovery room.  All three of our kids bonded with me just fine.  So I think whatever makes the mom-to-be comfortable is good.

jessi... jessicasmom1

um I think every man who is becoming a father needs to see his kids born, but still have her doula to help with birthing experience since he will not be  available to help her.

Allison Ross

I think having the doula there and letting the dad be there is probably best. My fiance was in total panic mode when our daughter was born. I probably *could* have called him useless, but I KNOW he didn't mean to be, he was just scared.

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