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My study buddy Fermi.

My study buddy Fermi.

I broke up with a lot of guys between the college and marriage. Each new suitor would follow the same pattern:

  • We’d meet and instantly fall head over heels. He is the one! 
  • The following weeks would be glorious and I’d bask in the glow of what could only be true love. This was the guy I was meant to be with forever!
  • Then things would start to change and I’d begin seeing snippets of this guys’ character that made me squirm. Did he really just say that about someone of a different race? Did he really just drink that much beer and barf all over the stoop? Did he really just order me to get him a cup of coffee? Did he really just get senselessly angry over a football game?
  • Once I started noticing these things the relationship would quickly go south. He is SOOOO not the one.
  • Eventually I’d end up meeting him for coffee or swinging by his apartment one afternoon. We’d chat for a few minutes and then I’d start my well rehearsed monologue. This is not working.
  • I’d leave my now ex-boyfriend’s apartment and begin the long walk home feeling simultaneous relief and sadness. I was single once more. I’d misjudged someone again.

Marriage brought a welcome end to this cycle of love, regret and loneliness. Never again would I be put in a situation where I had originally felt so sure of a person, just to have my hopes dashed as their true colors started to surface.

Or so I thought. The past few  years have seen a return of this cycle in an area of my life I would have never expected: medical practitioners. Our relationships always start out so glowy and I am certain this is the provider for me. The first appointment is the best: my questions are answered, my concerns addressed and validated, and I leave feeling secure and cared for. The second appointment is not as caring as the first, but I assume all is still well. By the third or fourth appointment, though, I’m rushed in and out and my concerns are brushed aside. I leave feeling alone and uncared for. Much like those final dates with Mr. Perfect.

Today I had my third appointment with the midwife and it left me feeling far from cared for.

I realize not all “normal” OB appointments are going to be really in depth. I realize that it is a GOOD thing not to have them scratch their head send you off for tests and ultrasounds. I am extremely thankful for my uncomplicated and boring pregnancy! I also realize that you should never leave a provider feeling like you are just a number; and that is exactly what I felt like today.

It started when I walked into the clinic. I was the first appointment of the morning and saw the midwife also walking in so I held the door and said a cheerful hello. She looked at me like I was a complete stranger and brushed by.

My appointment was the regular brief 20 week checkup. I peed in a cup, she poked around my uterus and then listened to the Chicken. I mentioned that I have been getting these weird hot flashes and flushing after I eat lately. It’s only after I eat and it is taking all the joy out of a good meal. I asked her about it and she looked at me like I’m insane and said she has no idea what to make of it and not to worry. Really? I feel like I’m on fire after I eat and I should not worry? I also wanted to talk about all these damn red spider veins that are showing up on my chest and arms but she had already left before I had an opportunity.

What she did do is belittle me about my weight gain, which she described as “excessive.” I explained that my mother and her side of the family all suffer from obesity and that I’m quite concerned about gaining too much in pregnancy. Her response: eat smaller meals and have frequent snacks.

I know this. I’m not an idiot. Any woman who is concerned about weight gain and does not live under a rock knows you should eat frequent small meals to stay full during the day. I’ve been doing this but have still packed on 15 pounds in 19 weeks. Obviously I need some guidance.

I try to eat a balanced diet. I do not regularly cave to my cravings (if I did I’d be eating a vegan date bar every night and having a decaf soy latte every afternoon!). I can’t remember the last time I had a soda; I strength train regularly and do cardio when the weather permits (which admittedly has not been often due to some craptacular weather); I eat a variety of fruits and veggies; I only eat whole grains; I don’t eat dairy. What else can I freaking do?

I expected my medical provider to ask about my diet and provide some solid options. Instead she told me to eat smaller meals and to have healthy snacks. Thanks a lot.

The real kicker, though, is when we were leaving the exam room she saw a book in my purse and asked what it was. I told her I was studying up by reading The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Better Birth and she said, “Huh, never heard of that.” What? I thought every midwife/natural birth enthusiast would have heard of this book? I at least thought all OBs would have been warned about it creating unruly patients. You mean to tell me a midwife who fist pumped my desire for natural childbirth is not well versed on the literature available?

I left this appointment feeling alone and uncared for. I left feeling very frustrated with my body and weight gain and uncertain how to curtail it. I left feeling dread over my delivery and not joy. As much as I hate to add yet another breakup to my repertoire , I think it is inevitable – my confidence has been broken. On Thursday I’m consulting with a doctor my doula recommended. She is a resident with the Family Medicine department at the hospital with the lowest c-section rate. She comes highly recommended as being competent, compassionate and very pro-natural birth.

How many of you changed providers during pregnancy? Do you think I’m being too judgmental towards the midwife? Am I out of line to expect some more concrete guidance on how to curtail weight gain?



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  1. February 5, 2013

    Yeah, I would have run screaming too. So sorry that you have to switch care-providers, but it sounds like it will only benefit you and Chicken. Wishing you luck as you begin the search.

  2. tchrgrl05 #
    February 5, 2013

    I would totally consider switching. That is NOT how things should go. AND for someone to describe 15 pounds at 19 weeks as excessive is also ridiculous. She would think I’m a freakin cow. If you think about it, if you gain a pound a week from 20 weeks on, you’d only be at 35 pounds which is within the completely acceptable and normal weight gain range. To me, you seem completely normal and average!!!! I wish I had only gained 15 pounds by 19 weeks…but honestly it’s slowed so keep that in mind too. I’m at my recommended 35 pounds and should deliver soon, so really, don’t put too much pressure on yourself about your weight. Keep doing what you’re doing–that’s the advice my OB gave me when I questioned my weight gain and told her I was working out 5 days a week. Here’s the other thing my OB said: as long as you don’t test positive for gestational diabetes, keep doing what you’re doing. Don’t drink sugary drinks (which you’re not) and limit your sweets (which you are). Your body will do what it needs to feed Chicken after that.

    But seriously, I hope you find someone better and more sensitive to your needs and wants. It’s YOUR body–be as judgmental about her as you want

  3. litzy #
    February 5, 2013


    I actually just posted last night about our switch to a new OB at about 20 weeks. Our first practitioner was assigned to us due to my usual OB’s own pregnancy leave of absence. The “replacement OB” was not great. From our first appointment she acted as if I/we knew nothing about pregnancy/my body. For example, I had stopped taking the pill free my last menstual period in late august. On October 1 I had a positive pregnancy test without ever getting another period in between. However, I knew when I ovulated, knew when we had sex, and therefore knew our conception date. But the OB insisted on calculating gestational age by my last menstrual period, which I knew was wrong and put me 2 weeks further along than I was. She did an ultrasound at our first appointment, saw nothing but a black dot that according to her could be “the gestational sac or a you’re having a miscarriage.” She sent me for HCG blood testing and had me come back in two weeks for another ultrasound. Even though I knew we were just early, because I KNOW my body, I spent two weeks thinking I might be in the midst of a miscarriage. When we had the follow up ultrasound, she asked, “ok, so how far along do you think you are?” and I told her 7 weeks, 1 day” to which she replied, “huh, you’re measuring exactly 7 weeks, 1 day!” Imagine that! Anyway, that was a long way of saying, I think it’s totally normal and sometimes necessary to change practitioners if you’re uncomfortable or feel like your concerns aren’t taken seriously. A first pregnancy is full to the brim of unknowns and it’s crazy to think patients wouldn’t have a lot of questions and concerns that need validation or empathy. We waited a couple months to switch only because our insurance was changing in January so it made sense to change both at the same time, and my pregnancy was going smoothly. But I say, if you feel this way, you need to address it or change it. Good luck!!

  4. February 5, 2013

    At the risk of sounding non-sympathethetic, please consider yourself lucky in that you have options at all when it comes to care providers. Our insurance limits our choices drastically- unless I want to drive hours to each appt, I have to choose from one of 3 OBs and 1 midwife, with the knowledge that chances are I will never have laid eyes on the person that actually delivers my baby. It sucks bad.
    That being said, since you DO have options, you should be picky! While feeling rushed out and unheard/unsupported seems par for the course (in my experience), it shouldn’t be! So I say keep looking and insisting upon proper, thorough OB care!
    15 pounds is fine. Your diet/exercise program are to be commended! I am seriously impressed and s littke baffled about how you do it! 🙂 Ignore that midwife and keep it up. Your weight gain will level off in the third trimester. Mine has anyway and I’m at 23 pounds at 37 weeks.
    I’m sorry you are facing another potential breakup. But, just like with our life partners, we sometimes have to go through a string of losers before we pick the winner… And it’s usually worth the wait and even some of the headache. I hope you find the right man or woman for the job soon.

  5. faith #
    February 5, 2013

    I like Kate’s remark about going through a few losers before you pick a winner. This may be God’s way of guiding you to the right hospital and services. Go with the flow and see where it takes you..this woman may get dumped or you may decide to stick with her. Everyone has “off” days..but her public manner wasn’t a good sign let alone how she acted behind closed doors. Keep in mind that a lot of professionals don’t have time to keep up with all the “new, current, fad” type books out there on birth, pregnancy, etc. There are you probably have is a business. It’s kind of like the advice post..there are just about as many books out there telling people how it should be done as people offering advice at every check out counter. Just wait til you have a baby..then the advice really starts pouring in. Pregnancy and birth prepares you for it..cause there is nothing worse than someone telling you how to raise your kid. UGH!
    From a professional standpoint..your weight gain is fine. You are building muscle with strength training which weighs more than fat. Right now you are also growing a baby and gaining a lot of water weight. As long as you are getting enough protein and greens, not too much sugar (from sweets or fruits) and drinking at least 2 1/2 quarts of water a day and your vitals are are PERFECTLY healthy. Sounds to me you are doing it just right. Now go treat yourself to some belly rubbing or something…love yourself and enjoy this time.

  6. February 5, 2013

    Yikes, just reading this left a bad taste in my mouth over this midwife. I have the book you are talking about, it was one of the first books I needed to read just to begin my doula training classes with DONA. She had to at least heard about The thinking Woman’s Guide if she is a freaking midwife! And as long as you are healthy and eating right i wouldn’t be giving you a hard time about your weight, every woman is very different in pregnancy. I mean I am no doctor, but I have actually read that more doctors go by that policy now than back in the day when they would flip out over every ounce gained.

    Unfortunately I have just had the same experience with my general practitioner. I told her I was trying to switch hospitals because of my concern over what an OB had told me and how she made me cry in the bathroom afterward. My doctor shrugged it off completely and told me I was probably just being sensitive or emotional. I was like, I may be sensitive but I am not a freaking idiot, I know how I was being treated! Next we were talking about my postpartum depression flaring up again in this pregnancy and I told her how I wanted to avoid medication because I got through it without meds last time and that I didn’t think this time would be as bad for various reasons (I didn’t even get to mention that I plan on encapsulating my placenta). She replied laughingly that I didn’t have to be a martyr. A martyr? I’m pretty sure she said this not only because I want a drug free fourth trimester, but also an unmedicated birth. What the hell? I call her a drug pusher now. I am not trying to be a damn martyr!

    Do you think I am being too judgmental of these doctors? Because I feel like it is they who are judging me! I definitely don’t feel like you are judging your midwife too harshly! Even my general practitioner gave me lots of time and let me talk a lot, unlike your midwife, and she asked about my husband who she knows is quitting smoking. Your midwife sounded, from what you wrote, preoccupied, unconcerned with details that are important about you, and sort of dumb!

    I get to met yet another OB, a man this time that the ladies say is a dreamboat, so at least that may be a plus! I still have no clue who will end up delivering our baby. I pray that it won’t be the OB who made me cry, all the OBs I have met have been nice except her, but obviously I will have had no relationship whatsoever with whichever doctor will be doing rounds during my labor. But, today I am meeting the woman who I hope will be our future doula, so hopefully she can make up for some of this mess! Good luck with your next appointment, I am feeling for you!

  7. jak #
    February 5, 2013

    i recognized that page as soon as i saw it;) your midwife though, may be old school and trained before TTWGTABB was published. BUT! just because she’s a midwife DOES NOT mean her values are necessarily aligned with yours. if she is associated with a hospital, she may be required to function under their guidance and expectations. she may not be as crunchy as you’d like. there are questions you can ask to figure this out. there may be a list in TTWGTABB, ina may’s natural childbirth book, and susan mccutcheon’s bradley book. you can maybe use those questions as a test. take notes and keep an open mind during questions, then think about it all later when you’re home and relaxed. if it’s not a fit, find something else.

    i’m no expert, and obviously never given birth before, but from reading birth stories, talking to moms, reading now 3+ natural childbirth books and taking a bradley class, i think that simply staying away from a hospital is the biggest step you can take towards achieving your goal of natural birth and avoiding a frankenbelly and frankenute. if there is any way you can safely and comfortably find a birth center other than at a hospital, you can know that the professionals associated with the center share your goals and advocate for natural birth.

    15 lbs is fine. i was worried about 10lbs in the first trimester and the attending midwife said, “you are starting from a position of health. your blood pressure is great. if you gained 40 lbs during this pregnancy things would still be ok. just keep eating well and everything will turn out”. its kind of shitty that they didtn go over diet with you. i had to keep a food log, answer written questions about what i do and dont eat and how frequently, and today at my appt the midwife went over it with my dh and i. she says i need more protein and i shouldnt drink skim milk. if i hate the taste of full fat milk, then i should try 2%, but no more fat free. then she recommended (and wrote down on a post it for my dh without us asking) a nutrition book that we should consult.

    if you have options, consider them. you’ll find your soul mate, just gonna take some time!

  8. cindy #
    February 5, 2013

    I have consistently been let down by my providers, but I live abroad where we have universal healthcare and don’t pay a cent for anything, including IVF…so, I try not to complain my way through the sometimes kafka-like twists and turns of the system and overbooked doctors. As far as the excessive weight gain, that sounds absurd- you are doing fine and I cant understand why your midwife would say that. In terms of the birth, having a good experience is clearly important to you and since you are going natural, you need someone you can take that journey with comfortably. So, since you have the option, look around. I do, however, think her response to your hot flashes was more or less normal (though maybe not looking at you like you were crazy). Weird stuff happens during pregnancy and the truth is, the medical world don’t understand the half of it. FYI- I had hot flashes that accompanied braxton hicks, often closely following a feeling that I was being choked when i was pg with my twins. My doctor also had no response to it and told me not to worry. The hot flashes sucked and the braxton hicks made me completely paranoid about early labor for months while the choking feeling had me terrified I actually WOULD choke….it all turned out fine and, thankgod, I havent had a hot flash since my c section.

  9. February 5, 2013

    Yikes! So weird that she’s taken a sudden turn for the uncaring… and uninformed, too. Firstly, while I have zero experience in these matters, I’ve seen your bump pics and you don’t look even CLOSE to being overweight for where you’re at in this pregnancy. Plus, women gain weight differently and there are phases where you pack on the pounds rapidly and then it kind of peters out, so I really wouldn’t stress about that yet. You’re eating healthy, you’re not eating massive platters of McDonald’s every day — you’ll be OK.

    Whether or not to switch midwives — that’s up to you. It’s worth looking around, and being proactive, but yeah… I wouldn’t stick with this woman just because of a fist-pump. 🙂

  10. February 5, 2013

    Um. Wow. 15 pounds excessive? First off, you were tiny to begin with – NOT overweight. You are halfway there. Weight gain declines in the 3rd trimester… so chances are you won’t gain more than 10 more pounds, especially with all you’re doing. And even if you gained 15-20 more, so what? Sounds to me like you’re body knows more than your midwife. You are not eating excessively AND still exercising. Your body is doing its thing to nourish Chicken. If you look for a different care provider do it sooner rather than later! Good luck!

  11. Arbrefleur #
    February 5, 2013

    I hope there are other fish in the midwife sea for you! 1) My midwife also is very interested in my diet (as she should be I think) and has me keep a food log, just so I can see for myself what I’m trending towards and she’ll help tweak if I want. And 2) I hate to say bad things before an ex is officially an ex (we all know how that can turn out 😉 but wtf is she talking about with your weight?? It is straight up insane and professionally negligent to say that 15 lbs at 19+ weeks with exercise is too much. In. Sane. Even if you don’t break up with her, listen to all the experienced ladies here who say that that is fine. More than fine. It’s great and you look fantastic!

  12. Amy #
    February 5, 2013

    Well shit. I had really thought she was “the one” for you too! But I think you should trust your gut, and hopefully your consult with the other provider will work out well. I definitely do not think that your weight gain is at all out of the safety range. I gained 35ish pounds total (easily 15 or more by the halfway mark, and probably sooner), and I am short (like 5’2″, being generous); it seems like a taller woman would need to gain more than average? And I guess I don’t really know how tall you are, but from your photos you SEEM pretty tall. Anyway, you are eating VERY healthily, so I think that is all that really matters, not the numbers on the scale. Even if the midwife didn’t know how to answer your diet questions or have time to go over your diet in detail, the very least she could have done would be to refer you to a dietitian/nutritionist who regularly works with pregnant women. I hope your consult gives you the opportunity to ask about the hot flashes after eating and the spider veins – even if there aren’t answers to be given, the questions should definitely be given proper consideration! You are doing great, Belle – any care provider should be happy to have a patient so dedicated to keeping a pregnancy and herself so healthy. If she is too busy to realize that, yes, you need to move on. You know what’s best for you and Chicken!

  13. karaleen #
    February 5, 2013

    Oh my goodness. I never doubted my OB. He was my gyn for several years before and just the sweetest man ever. He was totally old school and loved to partner with his patients. But from what I read about your visits….I would change too. Once you feel uncomfortable like that…it is really hard to get it back. I think we automatically assume midwives will be more caring and personal than OBs because traditionally they usually value the relationship as much as the care….but….like every profession…there will be bad eggs. I say go try out the OB with the great reputation. Word of mouth is usually the most accurate and only really happens when the Dr. is worthy of it.
    And…OMG on the weight gain!! Are you kidding me? 15lbs in 20 weeks? you are right on track for the average 35lb weight gain. I got really pissed off when I read that. So…I’m all for you breaking up with her and trying someone new. tee hee

  14. February 5, 2013

    Change providers!!! When you’re giving birth you want someone there you TRUST wholeheartedly. You’ve got 20 weeks, find someone else!

  15. heatherwallen #
    February 5, 2013

    Hi there, I think it all depends on your context and your alternatives. I have given a lot of thought about switching my OB this pregnancy because a) he saw me through my Trisomy 18 pregnancy and wasn’t the greatest communicator – I have since learned that he is uncomfortable (understandable to a point) in those situations and, by his own admission to me, he was seeing three women who were all infertiles and all had chromosomally abnormal pregnancies around the same stage and b) this time around he has proved that he isn’t an expert in some areas like nutrition/weight gain with a twin pregnancy to the point that I feel very alone in managing my own case and progress. To give an example, the leading book on multiple pregnancies “When you are expecting twins, triplets …” by Dr. Barbara Luke recommends gaining 25 lbs by 20 weeks pregnant and has differentiated weight gain goals based on your pre-pregnancy BMI. Makes sense, right? (the recommendation with a twin pregnancy is to gain more EARLY b/c you aren’t going to gain as much as a singleton pregnancy at the end). But I have heard my OB say to me “Well, I’m going to ignore the 20 lb. weight gain” (when he saw me at 17 weeks) as if it were a problem not something to appreciate. From what I remember you writing, you were far from overweight prior to this pregnancy and that makes a big difference in one’s pregnancy weight gain. Also if you were not barfing during your first trimester, it may seem like you’ve gained a lot at this midpoint, but really you’ve been gaining slowly but surely, which is the best way to gain. Dr. Luke’s book says that weight gained EARLIER in the pregnancy has proven to be correlated with losing it faster after birth, since the body has more time to use it efficiently to you and baby’s use. In sum – I’ve found that my OB (and your midwife from the sound of it) are just not into the nitty gritty of individual patients’ weight gain trajectories. Maybe consider seeing a nutritionist if you are concerned but do not want to change your midwife? In my case, I am happy with my OB practice overall, I can have TWO of the OBs in the room when I have a c-section with my twins, and my practice is extremely available whenever I’ve needed an emergency appointment/scan, so I stick with them … but all that said, the weight gain comments and lack of support for weight gain goals has really struck a chord with me and been a recurrent rumination in my head. Just makes it hard to feel proud of the 25 lbs. I’ve put on at 19w3d … but I’m still sticking to my guns and my eating plan 🙂 Hang in there, you are far from overweight!

  16. February 5, 2013

    A quick (?) story. I had an OB/GYN (Dr. M) who I loved for years before I got pregnant. She and I got along great. She took great care of me. When we decided to try to have a baby, I told her that I just “knew” that we would have trouble and I told her why. She told me that she was certain I’d be pregnant soon, but that she would fast-track testing because of my concern. She offered up testing at 6 months post-trying versus the obligatory 12. I just LOVED her. She apologized to me for being so optimisitic when we ended up needing an RE. Her care was amazing, and I couldn’t wait to return to her when I was finally pregnant.

    I got pregnant a couple years later and called her clinic to get an appointment setup. She was booked – so they gave me Dr. H because, “oh, you’re a fertility patient and you’re used to loving care – then you need Dr. H.” OK! So I went to see Dr. H and we both immediately loved him. When we left that initial exam, I setup all the appointments I could in advance and said to get them with Dr. H or Dr. M. I couldn’t see Dr. M until my 20-week exam. We saw Dr. H a couple more times and liked him more and more. When we saw Dr. M, she was rude, brief, acted like I was a NEW patient (I’d been her patient for 7 years), and then gave me a TERRIBLE time about weight gain, offering no advice other than to “not drink juice.” (I wasn’t drinking juice, so then she told me to stop eating so much fruit.)

    I never went back to her. I immediately cancelled all subsequent appointments with her and booked them with Dr. H. I’ve never looked back. Dr. H and his nurse are so kind to me (and I ask about weight gain all the time because I have gained more this time – I’m at 17-18 pounds and I’m in shock) and they never rush me. They hug us when we come in. They make small talk. With Matthew, I had a weird skin pain that I asked Dr. M about and she dismissed me like I was crazy, but Dr. H said, “I have seen this in about 5-10% of my patients and during my residency, and it will go away after birth, but it’s going to continue the entire time and I know it’s awful, but since it’s topical, we can’t do anything about it.”

    Dr. M is so fired by us – I mean, if Dr. H wouldn’t be able to see me for an appointment for this pregnancy, I would make sure that they don’t stick me with her. We saw her on the maternity floor when we delivered Matthew and she looked at me like there was some spark of recognition, but I just shot her the stink eye and looked away.

    Fire your midwife and find someone you love. You’re not crazy to change providers. You need to LOVE who you’re seeing! You need to be comfortable. You need to feel cared for!

  17. February 5, 2013

    I had the opposite weight gain experience where I was gaining 10lbs/month and my doctor was like, it’s fine! Don’t stress. I ended up gaining 55lbs, which I attributed to being on Zoloft. The good news was that I lost it all quickly breastfeeding. But I don’t know what to tell you. My doctor wouldn’t even acknowledge my fears even though I was gaining excessive weight. I saw a nutritionist and she said the same thing your midwife says. I guess there is no better advice to give? Sorry. 😦

  18. February 5, 2013

    She sounds like a person I’d skip the “things aren’t working” conversation with. I don’t have strong feelings about midwifery or doulas vs. OB/GYNs but I wonder if she’s relying on the “I’m the best alternative” you can find to stay as your provider. If so, I don’t know that she’s that much of a better option.

    15 pounds in 19 weeks sounds about right to me… and from your pictures, it’s not like you’ve gotten big or anything. You were just teeny to start with.

  19. MaLa #
    February 5, 2013

    My first thought when reading this was that maybe she meant you were worrying excessively about your weight? It seems impossible to believe she would describe your weight gain as excessive. Although many doctors just blurt things out — so “on paper” maybe it’s a lot, but I bet you are still at the low end for not-pregnant women at your height. Either way, if you’re not comfortable w/ her, definitely it’s time for a break up.

  20. February 5, 2013

    Ugh belle, that sucks! I know how excited you were about her. I changed providers at 12 weeks. Never looked back. Also, I was always 5 lbs less than the number of weeks pregnant – so 20 weeks = 15 lbs up. Right up until 34 weeks. Then nothing. Stayed at 29 lbs up until the end. I too was terrified, but it all worked out :).

  21. February 5, 2013

    I changed at 8 months pregnant. My regular OB left on maternity leave and I was handed off to another Dr. I would go to each appt. excited to hear my progress and leave in tears. I blogged about itin August. So I finally switched. It was the best decision I made. My 3rd OB of the pregnancy was a winner. She delivered my baby, never pushed unnecessary meds and was the perfect cheerleader for my pregnancy and birth. I delivered without pain meds and was in and out of the hospital in 24 hours. Healed well and felt great. If it doesn’t feel right then find a new practitioner.

  22. February 5, 2013

    I don’t know how easy or difficult it is to switch practitioner’s where you are (where I am, it’s almost impossible due to waiting lists), but if you’re feeling really uncomfortable and unhappy with your midwife, ditch her. Pregnancy is stressful enough as it is. You don’t need an insensitive and harsh practitioner adding to that.

    And her comment on your weight gain baffles me. You’ve gained at about the same rate as me and my OB has said absolutely nothing about my weight gain. And she’s as blunt as they come, so I think if it was a problem she would have told me. Please, please, please don’t let her comment make you worry about that. You’re doing better than most women at exercising and eating well. And you look wonderful!

  23. February 5, 2013

    I had to switch providers after my first trimester, not by choice but out of necessity because we moved to another state. It wasn’t easy but it’s not impossible either. My only advice is to stay on top of stuff and make sure no one drops the ball. If you’re due for any labwork or anything at the time you switch, it’s possible it could get forgotten about in the shuffle.

    And as for the weight gain, I don’t think it’s expecting too much at all to want your midwife to give you some helpful advice when it comes to eating. For the record, I gained 15 pounds in the first twelve weeks, but my OB was not concerned. She said she would let me know when she was worried and didn’t want me to stress over it because everyone gains weight at a different rate. Give two women the exact same thing to eat and one may gain nothing over the course of a week or two but the other may gain five pounds. She did give me a guideline for calorie intakes in pregnancy so that I could keep track and try to stay within “normal” limits if it made me feel better, but she stressed not to obsess over it. My feelings are that if you are eating the best you can, with only a few indulgences here and there, and staying as active as possible given your condition, you really have no need to worry.

  24. February 5, 2013

    Longtime lurker, here to chime in that I gained 39 pounds with my first and made a HUGE effort with my second, when I gained… 36 pounds. Yeah. There is almost NOTHING you can do other than obsessively count calories and as long as there’s nothing else wrong (GD, etc.) … honestly, who cares? Also I have never felt so out of control with my body as when I was pregnant. It was like, eat a salad… gain a pound. (I lost the weight from #1 in 6 months and #2, more like… 13 months… but it’s a little harder exercising with two kids.)

    I had midwives both times and none of them SUCKED as much as the lady you just saw. There’s no helping some people, that’s what.

  25. Kenya's mom #
    February 5, 2013

    I ‘switched’ three times. I would do each MD interview at another appointment. I think you know that story. A friend of mine, who you know, switched to our (now shared) natural birth enthusiast md with only one week to go. Another friend was informed that she could fire her MD while in labor and take another one on call when he was trying to give her an episiotomy against her wishes. There are no limitations for when to switch. As for weight gain, it is completely normal for women of a smaller stature to gain 30 pounds. At half way, you have gained half of that so I’m not sure why she is being so hard on you. It sounds like you choosing to stay with her might require a discussion about not discussing weight and the gift of a book she should have read. I look forward to hearing about your next prospective provider after you go.

  26. February 5, 2013

    I didn’t switch, but there was an appointment at around that time (maybe 22 weeks ish?) where my OB was pretty distracted and I thought maybe I’d made the wrong decision to stay with her instead of switching to someone in my new neighborhood. In the end, it was clear she was having a bad day, and her previous awesomeness came back at other, later appointments. I don’t have any advice for you, except to follow your gut – you need to be comfortable with this person.

    As for the diet thing, I had that same experience with my first RE. He said “lose weight.” WTF. I said, “how.” He said, “watch what you eat and exercise.” I said, “what kind of diet do you recommend” and he finally FINALLY said South Beach diet or something like it. WTF WTF. What kind of advice is this. Luckily SB did work for me at the time but I felt totally brushed off and uncared for. 😦

  27. February 5, 2013

    Good gracious. Boot her and watch the door hit her on the butt on the way out.

  28. February 6, 2013

    Nothing worse that feeling not looked after or listened to in a midwife appointment, definitely been there! I’m super sympathetic and have also recently changed midwives after the first woman literally did not know how to spell IUI (what???). I’ve also been told to watch what I’m eating by the first midwife, and two doctors, but never once has someone actually asked me what I normally eat or how I take care of myself (pretty darn well thank you! I’ve gained about 20 lbs at 22 weeks with twins and no one has really commented on that at all). The new midwife was much better, way less hysterical about the diet stuff and I felt like she really listened to me more.

    That said, I think we’re far from ‘soul mates’ as someone above said, and there’s a part of me that thinks that might be a bit too much to hope for in this situation? You want to feel safe and looked after but – and sorry to be cynical – I don’t know that there’s going to be some perfect fit that makes this all super easy and straightforward! Still, there’s some bare minimums that should be met…

  29. Ginny #
    February 6, 2013

    Wow……..lots of great advice here in the comments, and I really can’t add much here. BUT! I HAVE to say this or I will pop: Belle, you are NOT by any stretch of anyone’s imagination overweight, or gaining too much weight AT. ALL. I believe your starting weight may have been a bit low, possibly that is why you’ve gained 15 lbs. which is not excessive. You are also maintaining muscle mass which weighs more than other tissue (fat) by working out/exercising regularly. Try to not freak out because this person makes a (wrong I think) comment about 15 lbs. Good luck with your search for the right ONE. It will happen. That is all………

  30. theyellowblanket #
    February 9, 2013

    As a doula, I say switch! She sounds like she doesn’t know her stuff, and disregards your concerns. NOT a good sign as to how your birth could go!

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