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NHS Midwives for homebirths?

Hi ladies!

I'm not actually pregnant yet, but my DD was a year old on the 6th of Jan, and we are thinking about TTC our second. My first labour only last 4.5 hours, I was induced due to my waters breaking, though nothing happened for 15hrs after the sweep! She was only wee, 5lb 13oz and only 10days early, and to be honest, labour wasn't actually too bad! I managed on gas and air and the midwife actually commented on how quick and easy it was and said 'homebirth next time then, eh?!'. So, the whole point of this post is to ask if anyone has had an experience of a homebirth with an NHS midwife. We aren't going to be able to afford an independent midwife. I really would love to give birth at home, I can't fault the amazing hospital care I had, but being able to be in my own surroundings would be far better!!

Lianne xx


  • Hi Lianne,

    I had a planned home birth for my first in early December with NHS midwives and I can't recommend it enough. My experience was similar to yours - similar length of labour, baby 5lb 14 1/2 and two weeks early - and I was told that it is likely to be even shorter if there is a second time.

    I decided to look into home births quite late in the pregnancy as it was something I had discounted for a first pregnancy. My midwife was very supportive and encouraged me to go ahead with it; I think this is key if you do want a home birth as some midwives / doctors aren't keen and if you are bombarded with the negatives then you won't be in the right frame of mind for one.

    We couldn't have afforded a private midwife, but to be honest we didn't even think about that. There have to be two midwives present for a home birth and as you're the only woman in labour they focus completely on you, which you just don't get in a hospital. My two midwives were lovely (unfortunately my usual midwife was not working on the evening I gave birth, so it was different midwives) and they were there but not really intrusive if that makes sense. I think actually that the second midwife to arrive wasn't in the room all of the time because she came with the gas and air (which I didn't actually use - very relaxing being at home!) and had to set that up at some point.

    I had my daughter in the bedroom at the foot of the bed and once she had arrived I had skin to skin for about an hour or so before third stage and then I moved to my bed to deliver the placenta. The midwives helped me with the maternity pads and stuff, cleared up, filled in the paperwork and left me in bed with baby and DH.

    It was a wonderful experience and I am really grateful that we went ahead with it. The midwives were fantastic and being NHS didn't, I think, make any negative difference at all. The only thing to be aware of is that if you give birth on a night when there aren't two midwives around to attend, you will have to go into hospital. I guess with a private midwife that won't happen.

    Why don't you bring it up with your midwife / ask at your hospital or birth centre (when you are pregnant obviously!) and see what they say. You have a long time to look into it, as I said before we didn't even consider a home birth until I was about 30 weeks and they don't confirm it with you until 36 weeks as you need to be 37+ weeks to deliver at home.

    Hope that helps, if you have more questions I'm happy to answer them if I can.

    mrs_ed and tess (6 wks)

  • I had two nhs midwives at both of my home births and am also having another with no'4 in a matter of weeks...eeek!

    I have moved areas and so have a different team of midwives which I am really gutted about. Dont get me wrong these ladies are nice but they are not the team that has known me for 8 years, delivering all three of my other children.

    I think if I could afford it this time round i would have got an independant midwife purley cos I havent seen the same midwife this whole pregnancy and I am 37+3 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Talk to your midwife/HV once you get your BFP and they should be able to help with all the details.

    Goodluck ttc hunnie xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • I have had 2 homebirths with NHS midwives and they were both lovely!
    so when the time comes i would say go for it as long as you don't have to be induced again as obviously you would need to go into hospital for that but hopefully that wouldn't happen again!
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