How do I cope with the anxiety and the pain?

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    Maria Gammon

    I just don’t know I can do this! I know that the baby is coming, one way or another, but I’m not sure how I can cope with the pain! I was very committed to a natural birth and not using any pain medications at all, but I’ve heard so many horror stories from friends and family that now I don’t know what to do. I’d just chicken out and get the epidural, but honestly, I’ve heard stories of that going badly too! Please offer me advice and tell me I’m going to survive! How do I cope with the anxiety and the pain?

    Debra Stapleton

    Remind yourself that your body is made for this, and that your baby will waiting for you after all the fear and pain. Have you talked to your doctor about your concerns? It’s OK to try laboring naturally for a while and then go for the epidural. That doesn’t mean you’ve failed. You don’t want to wait too long, however, because at a certain point the epidural can’t be administered.

    Megan Carbone

    Does your hospital offer any labor and delivery classes? I went to the one our hospital offered and they had some excellent tips. Also, bring your birthing partner into the process with you so that they can support you. Let them know about your fears and concerns, so that they can be better prepared to help you during labor.

    Jeannie Farrelly

    I ended up having a pretty scary birth that ended with an emergency c-section, and needed a lot of pain medication to recover. In the end, I still had a wonderful baby boy to take home and love. It is totally normal to be scared, mama, but you can do this! Writing up a birthing plan can be a great way to manage anxiety, but be prepared for the unexpected. You might also look into getting a doula for extra birth support.

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