16 Things Not to Say to a Mom Planning a Home Birth

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home birthA few months back, the American Academy of Pediatrics released home birth recommendations. To sum them up for you, the AAP advocates hospital births, yet some studies show that home births are just as safe -- if not safer. In fact, home births are becoming more and more popular every year. Between 2004 and 2009, the number of home births in the U.S. increased by nearly 30 percent. Interestingly, home births are more common among white women aged 35 and over, and among women who have had other children. The exact reason for the rise is not clear, but experts say it may have to do with women wanting less medical intervention during their birth experience.

But no matter the reasons, it's important to recognize that we all make different choices when it comes to labor and delivery (and well on into the child-rearing years). Some of us will choose hospital births and some will choose home births and why we do is nobody's business but our own. Let's respect and honor each other's choices. To that end, here are a few things you should never say to a mom who has chosen a home birth:

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  1. I would never do that -- it's too unsafe.
  2. Are you going to eat the placenta?
  3. If I'd have had a home birth my baby would have died because I had to have an emergency C-section.
  4. Aren't you scared?
  5. Ewww. I wouldn't want to clean up that mess.
  6. Does your midwife carry malpractice insurance?
  7. What are you trying to prove?
  8. There was absolutely no warning that there was anything wrong with my son until after he was born.
  9. Are you going to home-school too?
  10. What do you have against hospitals?
  11. Does your [mom/husband/sister] know about this?
  12. What if you need drugs?!
  13. I know a friend of a friend of a friend who had a home birth and her baby died.
  14. I wouldn't risk my baby's life by having a home birth.
  15. I'm willing to pay for a hospital birth -- I don't care how much it costs.
  16. How could you live with yourself if your baby died?

Are you considering home birth? What's the rudest thing someone has said to you?

 

Image via Jason Lander/Flickr

delivery, homebirth, labor & delivery

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truth... truthrowan

Had a wonderful home birth in December with my youngest. Most people were pretty nice, but one girl I worked with at the time called me a selfish b**ch and asked what flowers to send to mine and my child's funeral. Was glad when she got fired.

jrmo4 jrmo4

My drunken mother in law equated me to an animal and told me not to come around near my due date because then I would want to give birth at her house....I was flabbergasted. That isnt what home birth is about at all!

jrmo4 jrmo4

My drunken mother in law equated me to an animal and told me not to come around near my due date because then I would want to give birth at her house....I was flabbergasted. That isnt what home birth is about at all!

katyq katyq

I have been contemplating homebirth for my next child. I had a wonderful experience with my first in the hospital but giving birth just feels so natural to me and i just feel like a hospital s not the place for me to do it in the future.

nonmember avatar Carlie

I was a nanny for a midwife, and noticed quite a lot of people who have babies at home also choose to homeschool..just what I noticed.

Caera Caera

These are all valid questions/statements. Especially 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, 14, and 16. Why not bring them up? If a woman can't handle them, or can't answer them, she probably shoudln't be having a home birth.

wamom223 wamom223

My cousin had a home birth and was shocked I didn't have anything shitty to say about it.  For me I had a hard pregnancy spent mostly on bed rest and then delivered early so I didn't get to make many choices.  My labor and delivery plan was to have a healthy baby no matter what I had to do.  I walked away from the experience a little sad that I didn't really get a say in anything but happy I had a healthy baby.  I think if you've had a healthy pregnancy you should decide whatever you want.  Because of my last pregnancy a home birth would not be an option for me, it would turn my man into a basket case and defeat the purpose of a home birth.  I know some woman have a bad experience and think your a bad mom if you risk a home birth but there are risks every where.  Babies die in home births and sometimes they die during hospital births.  In the end all you can do is follow your heart.

ThisW... ThisWomanRocks

What is wrong with #4 and #8? People ask women that are going to give birth in hospitals if they are scared too....and number 8 is just something honest. Some babies live and some babies die. ( 1 in 4) and it doesn't matter if it is home birth or hospital....and some babies *don't* have anything wrong until after they are born. If a home-birth Mom doesn't want a discussion, then they shouldn't be welcoming those comments or questions by stating they are having a home birth. 

Melinda Mercier

I think you need to do a heck of a lot more research on home births if you honestly thing any of these questions have validity and somehow not with hospital births.

Sarah Stewart Holland

I've had two wonderful home births. I got a lot more rude comments the first time. Funny how people are a lot less skeptical after you give birth to the first nine pounder at home! ;)

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