Could you have a VBAC—and would you WANT one?

Emily Zanotti already conquered one motherhood challenge (having twins) and she just crossed another rubicon: She had a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). So… what happened? What does she want women to know? Kelly Maher asks her for all the details…

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There are 18 comments.

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  1. Full Size Tabby Member

    Old guy here, but both my wife and my daughter have had what you call “VBAC,” so your warnings did not scare me off!

    In daughter’s case, the first (the C-section) was after 28 hours labor because child #1 (our grandson) had (and still has) an enormous head that got stuck in the birth canal. Daughter wanted to not do a C-section for child #2, but the local hospital at which child #1 was born had a “no VBAC” policy, so she chose a different hospital 30 minutes away. But, child #2 was much smaller than child #1, and came down the birth canal so fast that daughter didn’t have time to get to the new hospital. So child #2 (our granddaughter) ended up being born vaginally at the local hospital with the “no VBAC” policy. Granddaughter’s head was already crowning when daughter arrived at the hospital, so there was no choice. Daughter and son-in-law did not have time to get child #1 to the people who planned to care for him, so the hospital staff took care of him (fortunately they weren’t busy). 90 minutes of labor. They were at the hospital only 25 minutes before delivery. Daughter found that much preferable to 28 hours of labor followed by C-section. 

    • #1
    • November 12, 2020, at 1:35 PM PST
    • 1 like
  2. Full Size Tabby Member

    Yes, a father reacts differently to a newborn daughter than to a newborn son. Something that defies physics or other logical explanation causes baby girls to come our of the uterus with Daddy wrapped around her little fingers. Encourage that. Daddy is the first man your daughter will love, and will set the pattern for the men she chooses to love later in life. Being Daddy to a girl is an awesome responsibility.

    Oh, and a younger sister will get used to the physicality of having older brothers. Complete with getting bonked on the head with plastic toys. Even in utero, she was no doubt experiencing an active physical experience as your sons were climbing on your belly and making noise.

    • #2
    • November 12, 2020, at 1:47 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  3. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    My wife’s OB absolutely refused to do that. My father, who delivered over 5000 babies was not a fan either. 

     

    • #3
    • November 12, 2020, at 1:58 PM PST
    • Like
  4. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Every other child was a VBAC for us, primarily because boys 1 & 3 refused to cooperate and placed the delivery on their schedule, not the doctors’.

    • #4
    • November 12, 2020, at 2:01 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  5. Skyler Coolidge

    Good lord, no. I would never want one of those. I can’t even imagine it. The things women do boggle my mind.

    • #5
    • November 12, 2020, at 2:18 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  6. I Shot The Serif Member

    I would want a VBAC for sure. Today we know that they’re usually a viable option (doctors being unfamiliar or uncomfortable with something is often the barrier, rather than the thing not being possible or safe in the right hands) and I always avoid major abdominal surgery when I can.

    • #6
    • November 12, 2020, at 5:03 PM PST
    • 2 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  7. sawatdeeka Member
    sawatdeeka Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I had one for my second daughter nineteen years ago. It was being promoted at Kaiser because they were concerned that something like a quarter of births in their system were C-sections. I’m glad I went with a VBAC. It went well. 

    • #7
    • November 12, 2020, at 8:48 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  8. Patrick McClure Coolidge

    Gotta brag here. My wife had 2 C sections. Second one was because the doctor lied. She found a new obgyn and had 2 VBACs for our last two. Of course her first vaginal birth, our second son, had a huge head like me. Biggest of the four. OK, now I’ll listen.

    • #8
    • November 13, 2020, at 5:39 AM PST
    • 1 like
  9. Patrick McClure Coolidge

    Ladies, I watched 2 C sections and 2 VBAC’s. Nothing you say will bother me. Anyone squeamish is just a pansy.

    EDIT Watched the C sections in the big mirror from initial cut to baby removal.

    • #9
    • November 13, 2020, at 6:03 AM PST
    • 3 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  10. GrannyDude Member

    First baby was a caesarean. Subsequent three were not. Similar stories to the others posted, so I’ll spare you the deets! 

    My basic rule of thumb about birthin’ babies was to provide what the organism (that is, the baby) expects. A human infant “expects” (has evolved/been created) in the expectation that he or she will travel through the vaginal canal. His/her little tummy expects breast milk. His/her intellect expects to be exposed to human language. His/her little spirit expects the presence of a mother and a father. And so on. It’s not that the lack of any one of these leads to instant death—obviously, a child can and will survive caesarean birth and formula feeding from a single mother who’s not one for a lot of chit-chat…but mere survival is not the bar to clear. At least, it wasn’t for me.

    Having said that, I was so persuaded (thanks to assiduous study of that transphobic bible, Our Bodies, Ourselves) that male doctors were part of the patriarchal conspiracy to control my body, that having an emergency caesarean after my first long labor seemed to me a terrible tragedy. It’s embarrassing to remember just how melodramatic I was about it, for months and even years afterward.

    The paradox is that yes, a vaginal birth ( even what we would call a home birth) is the route taken by the majority of this planet’s 7 billion inhabitants. The system works. Except when it doesn’t—a planned cesarean would’ve saved my first grandson’s life.

     

     

    • #10
    • November 13, 2020, at 6:35 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  11. Patrick McClure Coolidge

    I thought baby showers were planned by others, not the mother.

    • #11
    • November 13, 2020, at 7:04 AM PST
    • Like
  12. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    My wife’s second C Section was not bad at all. Neither one was. 

    But, apparently, based on comments, we were part of a patriarchal evil system, which included my father and our female OB. 

    We also bottle fed our kids.

    So, we are just horrible, awful, no good people. 

     

    • #12
    • November 13, 2020, at 7:26 AM PST
    • Like
  13. I Shot The Serif Member

    Patrick McClure (View Comment):

    I thought baby showers were planned by others, not the mother.

    That’s the conventional way. It is also conventional to have only women present. But it’s becoming normal to flout such conventions. Rules of etiquette change.

    • #13
    • November 13, 2020, at 7:47 AM PST
    • 1 like
    • This comment has been edited.
  14. colleenb Member
    colleenb Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    My wife’s second C Section was not bad at all. Neither one was.

    But, apparently, based on comments, we were part of a patriarchal evil system, which included my father and our female OB.

    We also bottle fed our kids.

    So, we are just horrible, awful, no good people.

     

    I think the main thing for a baby is the mommy and daddy married to each other. After that, everything else is a choice which I, for one, will not judge you for. 

    • #14
    • November 13, 2020, at 8:56 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  15. Patrick McClure Coolidge

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    My wife’s second C Section was not bad at all. Neither one was.

    But, apparently, based on comments, we were part of a patriarchal evil system, which included my father and our female OB.

    We also bottle fed our kids.

    So, we are just horrible, awful, no good people.

     

    No judgment Bryan. 

    • #15
    • November 13, 2020, at 4:37 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  16. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Patrick McClure (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    My wife’s second C Section was not bad at all. Neither one was.

    But, apparently, based on comments, we were part of a patriarchal evil system, which included my father and our female OB.

    We also bottle fed our kids.

    So, we are just horrible, awful, no good people.

     

    No judgment Bryan.

    I am being silly. Lots of people get weird on this stuff. 26 years married. 

    • #16
    • November 13, 2020, at 4:56 PM PST
    • Like
  17. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    • #17
    • November 13, 2020, at 4:56 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  18. HankRhody Freelance Philosopher Contributor

    I don’t believe I could have a VBAC. I feel unequipped to determine whether or not I’d want one.

    • #18
    • November 16, 2020, at 9:29 AM PST
    • Like