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Thread: Mom/baby separation after csection

  1. #1

    Default Mom/baby separation after csection

    Hello Ladies!

    I need a few tips in dealing with a post-ceserian hospital policy. The hospital I will be delivering at has a MANDATORY 4 HOUR mommy/baby seperation after cesarian. While I completely disagree with the policy and think its completely unfounded if mom & baby are healthy and recovered well, I understand that I wont be able to change the policy. With my last daughter (whom I also delivered via cesarian at the same hospital) they gave her a bottle during those 4 hrs in the nursery, EVEN AFTER I made it clear I was planning on BF. After endless attempts getting her to latch and a few months of pumping, I resorted to formula feeding her. Needless to say, I am hesitant this will repeat itself. Any pointers or tips on what I can do to make this time a success? Has anyone else had to deal with a mandatory separation after cesarian? thanks for all your help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    obviously not a baby friendly hospital you need to let others know this, and that you do NOT like their policies. Do you HAVE to go to this hospital? Is this the same hospital that is mandatory csections? I would be scared to go to it as it seems so far behind the times in medical knowledge.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Northern Cal.

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    What an awful policy!!

    If you have no choice, I would send your partner, DH, or a good friend to spend those four hours WITH baby, and be there to PREVENT any bottles being given to the baby.

    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    In Peace

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    First, and it's fine if you are not comfortable disclosing your medical history, is a second cesarean necessary. Second, who will be in the birth room with you? Can you send your partner with baby to control what happens to baby and provide the loving arms of a parent while your mom or best friend stay with you? Talk to your other half ahead of time to discuss what's ok and what isn't. Stress to that person that they need to be assertive with yours and your baby's best interests in mind at all times. Hospital policy isn't set in stone he can refuse anything he wants.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    Wow, that's awful!

    Sometimes mandatory policies are a little less mandatory than you're led to believe. The nurses at the hospital where my first daughter was born said that babies had to go into the baby warmer in the birth room and then again in the nursery, and that no family members would be allowed to accompany the baby to the nursery. I freaked out and asked my midwife about it, and she said that the babies she delivered didn't go through that rigamarole, and that she would make sure hospital policy flexed to accommodate us. Which is a long way of saying "talk to your obstetrician, maybe the mandatory policy can be waived if the 'right' person asks".

    Another way out might be to have a VBAC... Is that an option for you?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    That was also the policy where my son was born, and his father went with him.

    ETA: I was able to "nurse" as they were sewing me up, which was also a deviation from policy, but that was cleared through my OB. Anything after that that was related to the baby went through the pediatrician/nursery and related to me went through the OB. Maybe try talking to your pediatrician?
    Last edited by @llli*mumtothomas; February 5th, 2012 at 05:12 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Northern CA

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    That sounds like a terrible policy, but if you must deliver there then I would look into options of having another family member stay with your baby. Preferably someone who is strong willed and who will have your BF'ing interests in mind. My DS was born via emergency c-section. We were separated briefly after birth. My DH stayed with me during that time and my mom went with DS to the nursery. She was allowed to give him his first bath and hold him until I was ready for him. I am very close to my mom, and she loved being able to help with DS during his first few moments.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    Ugh, this is an issue that is close to my heart. Following my first baby's birth via unplanned c-section I found out our hospital had such a policy. It was HORRIBLE being separated from my baby that long, for me a nightmarish experience. And yes it did negatively affect breastfeeding at first (along with the surgery and my own ignorance in general) but with some great help we did make it work after a couple of bad weeks. My baby was NOT given formula because my husband was with him the whole time and would not let them give him formula. When I had baby number two & knew I would possibly have another c-section I switched hospitals to one where they did not have this policy. I did have a scheduled c-section with number two. There was still a separation of about an hour, according to my husband, but I recall having my baby almost right away, certainly it was a very different experience and breastfeeding was fine from the start.

    Who told you this policy is mandatory? I agree you may want to pursue this through a few different channels. You are the consumer, the customer, of this hospital, kwim? Unnecesary separation of mother and newborn is against recommendations by the AAP and WHO and even non-certified baby friendly hospitals are relaxing these policies and have been for years. Why can't you change the policy, or at least make them change it for you? Even if you cannot go to a different hospital, it may help to know what policies the other hospitals around have. It is a poor policy with very bad health risks.

    OK, the other option-as pp's said, have you considered a VBAC? I was encouraged to do a VBAC by my Ob with my second, but due to reasons I won't get into here I chose not to. I now regret that decision as having a VBAC now after 2 c-sections if I have another child is unlikely for me, for various reasons. But VBACS after one c-section are common.

    So let's talk about if all else fails, you have a c-section and the 4 hour separation. Yes, this is not a great experience. But does it have to mean you will not breastfeed? Not at all.

    1) If you don't want your baby given formula, make that the order-no formula. This may be a good idea because not only may it cause breastfeeding issues but because it causes medical issues, especially in newborns, and is probably unnecessary. Formula is a medical intervention and should be treated as such. You are the parent and this is your choice. Babies are not born hungry. There is usually no reason for a full or near term healthy baby to eat anything in the first 4 hours after birth.

    As an extra measure, what if you provided your own colostrum (which you MAY be able to express before birth, or even in the recovery room? You can try to hand express or pump. Yes I know you will be lying down. Get a nurse to help you?) But as I said, this is just to keep them from giving your baby formula, I don't think baby will actually need anything. And yes, you will probably have to make this a firm order and have someone with baby making sure no one gives the baby anything unless medically necessary and you say it’s OK.

    2) Line up support now for in the hospital and after. Call your local LLL and go to a meeting or at least chat to a Leader or two. Ask them if you can call them from the hospital if you have concerns. I have occasionally visited moms in the hospital. Have an IBCLC that you have met and feel comfortable with lined up for professional help should that be necessary. Get the book The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (8th edition, 2010) and read up on breastfeeding after c-sections, latching and attaching, and normal breastfeeding baby behavior in the early weeks.

    3) Your confidence in being able to nurse has likely been undermined by your previous experience. Well, the confidence gap is a huge part of what moms end up breastfeeding and what moms do not. So do your research and know you & your baby can do this! Don't assume this time will be ANYTHING like your last time. Every baby is different, every breastfeeding experience is different, even if the births are both c-sections. If you are able to call a Leader or go to a LLL meeting, talk out your previous experience. If you want, try to figure out how things went off the rails last time and what you could do try this time should similar issues arise.

    4) Remember that c-sections and separations after birth may cause issues but that these are overcome all the time and the moms and babies go on to breastfeed just fine. Babies who go off to the NICU for days, even weeks, are able to breastfeed, babies given bottles for weeks, even months, may end up breastfeeding just fine. It is harder, no doubt, but by no means impossible to nurse under even very extreme circumstances. The big mistake many moms make is that they blame the issues on themselves, rather than on the circumstances. Knowing where the issues (should you have any) are coming from and what you could do about them often goes a long way to building your confidence in your body and your baby.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    My hospital had the same policy...they did not fed her while she was gone. Family would check on her time to time and I fed her immediately and she roomed in. all was fine..we did not have any latch issues. All the best...
    born 8lbs 12oz 21 inches
    Left hospital after c/s 8lbs 6 oz
    1 week old- 8lbs 6 oz
    2 weeks old- 8lbs 11 oz
    1 month- 9lbs 11 oz
    2 months 8/2/11- 12lbs 5 oz
    3 months- 14lbs even
    4 months-16lbs even
    6 months- 18lbs 6oz
    8 months-21lbs on home scale
    9 months-22lbs and 13 ouz
    11 months- ?
    12th months June 2
    Can't believe I have made it 11 1/2 months of nursing!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Mom/baby separation after csection

    Ugh. Do you have to go to this hospital? Do you have to have a section?if the answer is yes, I would just have someone go with the baby who doesn't allow them do do anything to the baby. Period. Ugh. I feel so bad for you

    However, as PP pointed out, it will still be possible to BF successfully. And FWIW, I had emergency surgery after my first was born. He was there with me the whole time, but he had to have a bottle as he developed signs of low blood glucose while I was not available. The midwife gave him a bottle. Yes, it caused trouble, but I did eventually go on to nurse that child for 20+months.
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

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