Choosing a midwife can be one of the biggest decisions of your pregnancy. Your choosing the person who will not only be caring for your baby but also you and your baby daddy on the big day. An experience that will change your life forever no matter whether it’s your first or fifth, the people in our lives are what make us.
What bought about me writing about this is that I remember when I had my daughter another friend of mine was due with her daughter not long after me and like my pregnancy she was overdue. I shared the experience I had with my amazing midwife who a day before my scheduled induction suggested I take a prescribed natural remedy from the herbal dispensary to bring on labour. With less than a hiccup my baby was evicted straight into my awaiting arms.
While my friend wasn’t really into natural medicine it certainly sounded better than an induction for her at the time. My friend spoke about it with her midwife and without discussion her midwife declined to entertain the idea as it wasn’t her philosophy and didn’t believe in it. Now I’m no tree hugging, nature loving hippy or anything but I do like natural medicine where it can be appropriately used. While my opinion on the midwives response is neutral you could debate it from so many different angles and I believe her midwife just wanted to right by my friend in delivering a service she felt was of high quality. This did however highlight the importance of knowing your options and asking the right questions on selecting your midwife because ultimately they will be making the decisions possibly when you can’t.
Here are 5 questions I recommend you ask a midwife before committing to the relationship.
- Ask her if you can ask her a couple of questions?Most medical professionals will allow some conversation time to go through any worries you may have. While keeping in mind you need to be respectful and genuine in your questions because at the end of the day our health professionals are amazing but not magic. If the midwife seems reluctant to take some time to answer your concerns that would be a red flag for me.
- How do you settle a crying baby?While there is no right answer to this one and its also quite separate to the main job of a midwife. In my opinion the way someone handles children tells a lot about how someone is and their approach to someone who is vulnerable. You will know if her answer is right for you because each answer will suit different people.
- How do you manage distressed mums due to give birth?A top comment topic I hear about is how midwifes respond to women while they are in labour, which maybe even be during the night. While you can’t expect a midwife to be at your beck and call I think its important to understand her boundaries from the start and whether they work for you.
- How will you manage my husband/partner/support person in labour?I’ll always remember in my birth plan my midwife always included my husband to have an option whether to catch our baby or cut the cord but also left the option to opt out without pressure.
- What are your thoughts on natural medicine and remedies?While I’m not advocating natural medicine by any means, however I think it’s important to know what options you have and that may be things like massage, acupuncture, chiropractor and lots of other natural resources you could access in the time of need.
I can’t tell you who makes the perfect midwife as we are all so different and one way of working will suit everyone. What I do know is that people are important, they are with us when we make our forever memories so unless you want a good workplace story then i’d suggest having the right people around us when we need them is important #midwivesaremiraclemessengers