19 responses to “Secrets Of A Homebirth Dad”

  1. Baby Keeper

    Thanks for sharing this. It is so well done. I was particularly touched about the loss from having to leave.

    I sent this to my son. He and his wife are expecting baby in late summer. They’ll be in the hospital but the info in the post is so relevant to every father. Fathers can learn from the men who experience homebirths and this can help them to demand what they and the families need, even more so, in the hospital.

    I am also working on a film for fathers and talking about the losses, violation, and powerlessness of men during hospital birth. The film looks at and compares the experience of baby (and father) born at home to baby born in hospital.

    I look forward to reading more of your blog. It looks so informative.


    Baby Keeper

  2. Cryptic Automaton

    That was a great post. You probably already need to be a dad to really appreciate it.

    I am sure of one thing – If us men were the ones that got pregnant we would nearly all choose to birth at home. Men hate medics probing with their vitals! Heck, most blokes could have a cancerous growth the size of a tennis ball on their testicles and they still won’t go and see a doctor.

    For some reason men are convinced that their wives are going to die giving birth (let’s blame TV). That will leave them a single dad bringing up a new born baby alone. That’s 2 nightmares in 1.

    Another thing is men erroneously believe birth is always really quick (let’s blame TV). So if you have a homebirth it will all happen before the midwife arrives, which means clueless dad will have to do her job. More terror!!! However, as the article says, births can be extremely long.

    I was at a hospital for our first and for a lot of the time I was bored, tired and very, very hungry. It was night and I only had women’s magazines and a vending machine for company. The wife was no help and I didn’t even have any money ’cause we left in the mandatory fluster.

    When women go to hospital they have a little kit of essentials, well prepared weeks in advance. Men, foolishly, don’t! They need a thermos, plenty of snacks, money, reading stuff, psp/ds etc.

    Alternatively, don’t buy the hype (let’s blame TV) and stay at home (er, with your wife).

  3. Sarah Stewart

    Really good post – I enjoyed it from a midwife’s point of view. Will pass it onto my student midwives. cheers Sarah

  4. Susana

    Awesome post! I am definately linking to it! Great blog you have here. Thanks for all you have done with it. As a side note, I am wondering how you are able to get links and stuff on both sides of your page???? I want to do this with my blog. It utilizes all that space!


  5. Lisa Barrett

    Hi, glad you are enjoying the blog. My husband is a computer boffin and somehow recoded the html to make three columns. He is a genius, I have no idea how you do it. Must admit it took him ages. The best free service I’ve ever had.

  6. Lynn Griesemer

    Excellent! Dads should be invited to the birth, not neglected or forgotten. We are planning the “Third National Husband / Wife Homebirth Conference” to take place on July 4 weekend, 2009 in Liberty, Missouri. Visit my website for more details in the coming months. -Lynn M. Griesemer, author of UNASSISTED HOMEBIRTH: AN ACT OF LOVE and YOUR BODY, YOUR BIRTH: SECRETS FOR A SATISFYING AND SUCCESSFUL BIRTH. http://www.unassistedhomebirth.com

  7. John

    I’m glad to see/hear about more and more people choosing a non-hospital environment for their Births. My wife and I did a Birthing Center for our Daughter, which is like a home birth except not at home. And now we are going to do a Home Birth. I am really excited and confident in our decision.

    I particularly like item #6, this is the truest for me, I would have a hard time standing up to doctors and nurses when it comes to our Birth plan. and having it at home would mean no pressure for a epidural, C-section, and all those other non-natural procedures deamed a medical necessity.


  8. Coran

    Excellent Post. #7 is so true – it’s hard to describe what it’s like the first time you see and hold your child. Then you have to leave … you’re right, it feels like you’ve had your heart ripped out.

    Also, I can’t overstate how natural it felt after a homebirth to go to sleep with my wife and new baby in my own bed, after a hard day’s work looking after them.

  9. rudiemods

    Good site! I’ll stay reading! Keep improving!.
    It is Very informative blog.
    I like your blog

  10. Lisa Barrett

    Do not click on the above post link it’s an advert I published by mistake and can’t seem to delete.

  11. breeanseppiyo

    Wicked,to see other brave homebirthing dad's-growing in the experience,of looking after their woman while she delivers their child!
    Said by a father of 2 homeborn healthy girls,and a boy due in late august.
    I believe,the internet as a tool for networking/communication,is enabling the individual with a clear perspective-of the difference in hospital-guided birthing,opposed to homebirthing.

  12. Michelle

    Well written and nicely expressed Ven. Thank you for posting it Lisa.

    Two of our (my husband and mine ;-) ) children were born in a hospital. And our third at home with midwives. While they all were good births, our homebirth was that much more special. I am attached to all of my children and love the same; but i had this feeling after she was born that she really was mine. The midwives never took her away from us, like was done in the hospital. I was told each time my baby had to spend a certain amount of time in the nursery.

    Michelle in DE, USA

  13. Ben

    Great post, very true to the experience and a really good laugh… right up to number 7, which was a really good cry. When I got home, exhausted after about 30 hours of agressively caring and advocating for my wife, who gave birth by caeser after a failed induction (15 days post term), I had to call my new dad friend in Canberra and talk it through. How, after 9 months of talking to my wife’s belly, could I have laid eyes on my newly named son for the first time, only to leave him and my wounded wife and go home? I couldn’t get his face out of my head, it was a sad, lonely feeling. I always knew that it hurt, but I think reading the article made me realise how much… 2 years after the fact, I cried. Thanks for writing it. It’s home birth for us this time.

  14. Leah

    Thanks so much fo sharing that. I can’t wait to have my babies at home- luckily my partner doesn’t seem to care where they’re born (most of his aunts and uncles were no doubt born at home in Lebanon) but I think for men who are concerned this would make a big difference.

  15. Racheal

    It was the ‘I’ll have my own bed & my tv & video games’ that made my husband all for a homebirth this time. But now, the more he thinks about it the more he realizes how much better this will be for me too. I had an unnessacery c-section with child #1 & have already made it clear that this time, if they have time to do the epi & keep me awake then the surgery isn’t needed. I was cut for ‘failure to progress’ in pushing… I wish they would have told me the only failure was in not pushing long enough… I just learned last week that 2.5 hours & I was at a +3 – +4 station… you know, if they would have told me (or told my husband for that matter) I could reach down & touch my child’s head… I wouldn’t have let them cut me… Even with all they had put me through I would have found it in me to push that baby the last little bit he had to go. I know that even if things don’t go as planned this time will still be so much better for me & my husband.

  16. leonie valeska lange

    Dear Lisa, thanks for sharing this father report with us.
    Specally the part, where father HAS TO go home is very intense.
    Here, the fathers always are at the birthes at home or in my place. (exept one, who just falled on the floor few minutes before his son arrived)
    The farmer families give birth together with a lot of familymembers arround, the women from the cities I did observe that they just want the partner and oldest kids and may’ the mother too, and in the few cases where we ended up in a c-section at hospitals/clinics I could see how very deep desconected the fathers suddenly are. It takes them much longer to re-conect with the mother and child later one. In one clinic I finally found a staff of doctors who garantees that “my women” are not going to be seperated from partners at c-section, and the babies are staying with them and have breastfeeding the very first minutes in life. It took me years to find people-doctors like them.

  17. Joy

    Wonderful! Sharing with my husband. We’re in the USA so home birth is much more difficult to obtain in some places, unfortunately.

  18. Maira Libertad

    Lisa, I have been reading your blog since a couple of years ago but I have never written anything before. I’m a Brazilian midwife and I am one of the coordinators of a volunteer group for pregnant women in Rio de Janeiro (we aim to share information and support informed decision-making). I’d like to ask your permission to translate this post to use in one of our groups which will take place tomorrow (sorry about the rush ;) ). Is it possible? Thanks in advance and best wishes!