Get This Baby Outta Me: 14 Weird Things Moms Have Done to Induce Labor

woman eating pepper

If you've ever been pregnant, you know tht those last few days before your due date can drag like molasses ... and moms will consider trying just about anything to get that baby OUT. It's probably no surprise, then, that advice abounds on how to induce labor. Only do any of these old wives tales really work? We asked moms to share the craziest things they did to induce labor.

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Some worked, and some, well, we'll let you read their stories. Remember to talk with your doctor or midwife before trying any of these:

  1. Leg Massage
    "I was told never to massage the legs, because that it would induce labor! So two weeks before I was due, I got a pedicure and asked for a 10-minute 'hard' leg massage. The next day, I went into labor."
  2. Touch This
    "Nipple stimulation about every 15 minutes until BAM, labor. Like a nice tweak or, er, rub. It took me like 12 hours. However, I told my overdue cousin, and it worked in two hours for her, and my other cousin about six hours. It's scary how well it works; it's like you're playing God. Hold the power close!"
  3. Szechuan and Sex
    "When I was overdue with my second, a friend recommended 'Szechuan and sex' to get things moving. So I went to my favorite Chinese restaurant, asked for and ate the hottest thing on their menu, and had sex with my husband when he got home. Labor started that night, and my daughter was born four hours later. Maybe coincidence, but I'd like to believe it helped!"
  4. Leap of Faith
    "I was pregnant with my daughter and running three days past due date. My mother told me to sit up on the kitchen counter, then jump off, then walk around the block. Did it after dinner and bingo, went into labor at 2 a.m. that evening!"
  5. Scrub the Floor
    "My mother told me to scrub the kitchen floor on my hands and knees. She swears by it. Each one of her six children was stubborn, but she said it always worked within 24 hours."
  6. Pump It Up
    "When I was a week late pregnant with my daughter, I decided to use my breast pump for the nipple stimulation. Lo and behold, I went into labor a couple hours later. I was so relieved I would not have to be induced!"
  7. I'll Have What She's Having
    "In Los Angeles when I was pregnant there was this one salad served at a restaurant on Laurel Canyon that was supposed to induce labor. It was sort of a local ritual for women past their due dates to order it, so my friend brought me one take-out and I went into labor that night. Not implying correlation/causation here, but it was a fun ritual!"
  8. Or Eat Here
    "I'm a mother of three children, and my last child was born 17 years ago after I ate an eggplant dish at McKinnon's Louisane Restaurant in Atlanta. When I was there, a pregnant writer for Atlanta Magazine approached me asking if I was there for the eggplant. She asked me to contact her if I went into labor within 48 hours after eating the eggplant dish. To my surprise, my contractions started within the next 24 hours and my daughter was born the next day! Apparently, many full-term pregnant women still go here attempting to induce labor by eating their famous labor-inducing eggplant. The lobby of the restaurant even has a wall filled with pictures of pregnant women who have delivered babies thanks to this dish."

    More from The Stir: Inducing Labor: 6 Questions to Ask Your OB/GYN

  9. Oral What?!
    "My husband's method was completely self-serving, and this might be TMI, but he had a theory that if I gave him a long enough blow job, it would create a vacuum and pop the baby out. His butt slept on the couch for the next three nights!"
  10. Watch This Movie
    When I was 38 weeks pregnant with my son, I was miserable and ready to get labor moving. My OB/GYN told me to go to the movies to see The Hangover because he already had three women go into labor from laughing so hard at the movie. I called my husband while still at my appointment and told him we were headed to the movies that night. Although we laughed a lot at that movie, my boy didn't make his arrival until the following week.
  11. Try Swinging
    "I went on the swings at the playground and scared all the kids away! Didn't go into labor but had a great time."
  12. Chow Down on Pineapple
    "I ate an entire fresh pineapple in one day. That just gave me a stomachache."
  13. That'll Spice Things Up!
    "After my water broke, my midwife became concerned that I had no contractions. So she sent my husband out for two very odd things: spicy enchiladas from a local Mexican canteen and clear, odorless castor oil. She told me to take two large spoonfuls of castor oil, followed by a few bites of very spicy enchiladas. I could barely hold the enchiladas down! But not even 30 minutes later, I was hit with powerful contractions. My daughter was born 4 hours later. Am I skeptical that the odd enchilada/castor oil concoction was responsible for my labor? Definitely! But, when in labor with my second daughter a few years later, I was begging for castor oil to move the contractions along and get her out! Once I had the castor oil -- no enchiladas this time -- it sparked intense, back-to-back contractions again. My second daughter was born two hours later."
  14. Take a Ride With a Hot Dog
    "My grandma shared this little ditty with me: She said a greasy hot dog and a ride in the back of a car down a bumpy road would do the trick."
  15. Moving Day
    "I tried by moving the furniture around my living room, but it didn't work."
  16. Vietnamese Food
    "Several friends told me to eat spicy Mexican food. Since I grew up on that, I thought it was funny. But with my second child, I ate spicy Vietnamese food. Five hours later, my water broke!"

What's the craziest thing you've been told would induce labor?

 

Image via Volt Collection/shutterstock

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