"Childbirth trauma"

About: Wansbeck Hospital / Maternity care

(as the patient),

In 2002 I gave birth to my son in Stockport. I will give a short version of the events mainly because I am still unable to go in to detail with the emotional side to it. I started to contract at midnight on the Tues and stayed at home with my tens as long as I felt I could. By 5pm Wed I had been having contractions every 3 mins lasting 60secs so went in. Unfortunately for me building work was taking place and a shift change was under way. My midwife came in and was rude, unfriendly and unwelcoming. They were run off their feet and short of staff. I was 3cm dilated only.

They told me to go in the bath and put me in a room on another ward (not delivery) because they was so full someone would be back to assess me in 2 hours time. She also told me I HAD to have pethidine and we disagreed I didn't want it and refused. She left abruptly.

At 7am the NEXT morning (Thursday) I still hadn't been checked on. My husband and I were frantic and a cleaner came in to empty the bin and found us. She alerted a bank nurse who kindly put me on a monitor to show my baby was in severe stress and having heart difficulties. I was taken to theatre for an emergency section and spent the next 3 years battling with post traumatic stress disorder and PND.

After having my baby I had a catheter that flooded all over the floor because no-one ever changed it. A HCA who came in at 7am to draw the curtains telling us we needed to get up because we were "wasting the day lying around" most of hadn't had a wink of sleep and some had arrived during the night. Another HCA SHOUTED that I had not filled in my menu form and she had a lot of people to get round and another drew back my curtains whilst I had both breasts out trying to establish breastfeeding. Completely degrading and humiliating unfortunately for me the lady opposite had 12 yes 12 visitors around her bed at the time!

I was asked to leave after 3 days due to a bed shortage despite having a section and not established feeding. On my discharge a midwife told me "You'll probably never be able to give birth naturally"

After 5 years I summoned up the courage to have another, tried again and ended up with a section. It was a better experience at Wansbeck hospital my midwife was lovely. However the same old battles of visiting times etc were there. No light bulbs worked in the toilets etc and midwives struggled.

It is funny that they are so keen to stick to there visiting rules that even when you have had a spinal anaesthetic, can't walk or lift your baby they would still rather ask the partner to leave giving them MORE work. Totally bizarre. The lady opposite me this time had twins and the midwife was horrible to her and her husband about him being there between 12 and 3pm. She was vomiting into a tub, both babies were crying they were rushed off their feet she hadn't showered yet and they weren't prepared to let him stay to help her yet couldn't help her either. Bizarre! Not a great start to newborn twins.

Some midwives are wonderful yet they are so clearly overstretched and stressed that some are plain horrible. There is no other way to put it really.

These people make or break your relationship with your child, your marriage everything. It is in there hands to make you or destroy you. Childbirth is not just a physical act, it is very much an emotional one too.

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