Molly Murray - Birth, Life, and Business Doula
Preparing For A VBAC in Cincinnati
So, you've recently found out you are expecting and you've had a previous cesarean??
You've come to the right place!
If you've chosen to prepare for a vaginal birth after a cesarean, here you will find 5 tips and resources on increasing your chances of a successful VBAC in Cincinnati, remembering that whatever birth YOU choose will be the right one for you and your family.
1. Choose a Supportive Care Provider
A supportive care provider is the most important step in attaining a successful VBAC. You want to find someone who understands that a vaginal birth is best for you and baby and one that not only supports you, but believes in you.
Find out what their cesarean rate is and what their rate of successful VBACs is. Listen to their tone. Do they sound like they truly believe in you? Are they willing to answer all of your questions? Listen to your gut and don't be afraid to switch care providers until you find the right one for you.
Here you will find my list of Naturally Supportive Care Providers in Cincinnati as well as Questions to Ask Your Care Provider. This will be a great starting point!
2. Seek Out Local Support Groups
We are so fortunate here in Cincinnati to have a monthly meeting of women and families who are passionate about supporting other families through avoiding medically unnecessary cesareans, healing from cesareans, or even preparing for cesareans.
Find more information, please visit:
International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN) - Cincinnati Branch
ICAN of Greater Cincinnati Facebook Page
Looking for more personal support? I have several past clients who would LOVE to talk with you and share their experience
3. Read, Research, and Empower Yourself
I've found that being up to snuff on current research and recommendations will help you to confidently move forward in your decision and hopefully dispel any negativity you might encounter from friends and family.
Information Packed Websites:
Science and Sensibility
15 Inspiring VBAC Stories
Birth Without Fear
VBAC Specific Books:
Birthing Normally After a Cesarean or Two
Silent Knife: Cesarean Prevention and Vaginal Birth After Cesarean
Cut, Stapled, Mended
Facebook Support Group:
VBAC Support Group- Vaginal Birth After C-Section
The Truth about Cesareans
More Business of Being Born
4. Hire a Doula
You knew it was coming, right? As a doula, of course I'm going to say that, but really the evidence is Here, There and ooh, look... Even More Here.
Numerous studies have found that women who are continuously supported in labor have shorter labors, fewer complications , and fewer cesareans.
Women are less likely to need pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), drugs for pain relief including an epidural, and forceps or vacuum extraction. They are also more likely to be satisfied with their birth experience.
As a doula, I have worked with many women desiring a VBAC, most of which have had successful VBACs and all of which have felt informed and supported throughout their pregnancy and birth.
I must say, there is nothing more amazing than witnessing the look on a woman (and her partner's) face when she is holding her fresh newborn baby... that she pushed out of her vagina! .... Wahoo!!
5. Be Gentle with Yourself
You are pregnant...and you're a mother. You have a lot going on..
Preparing for childbirth is always an intense experience, but especially so when faced with such big decisions.
You can do it! You are strong. You are smart.
No matter the decisions you make along the way, they are going to be the right decisions for you.
Bonus Tips for Preparing Your Mind and Body for a VBAC:
A few things that many women have found to help their comfort, state of mind and strength for pregnancy and labor include:
Visiting the Physical Therapist
Drinking Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
Have tips to add or share? I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to comment below!
20 Questions to Ask Yourself When Writing Your Birth Story:
1. Where were you at and what were you doing when you first thought labor may be starting?
2. What was the first sign that labor might be or was imminent?
3. Who did you tell first? How did they react?
4. How and when did you know for sure that it was labor?
5. Did you have time to rest? What are some of the activities/positions you tried for comfort?
6. When did you call your doula, childcare for older siblings, someone to care for the dog, etc.?
7. How long did you labor at home?
8. How did you know it was time to go to the hospital or call the midwife, if having a homebirth?
9. What was the ride to the hospital like?
10. What are some physical sensations you especially remember..smells, touch, noises?
11. How would you describe your contractions or surges in the various stages in labor?
12. What were your moods like at various times in labor?
For fun, how would those around you in labor answer this?
13. What was it like to settle into your birth place?
14. What surprised you about your labor?
15. What would you describe as the high and low points of your labor?
16. How did your labor and birth compare to what you thought it might be like?
17. How long did you push? Were there complications with your delivery? If so, what were your feelings and reactions to the intensity?
18. How did your baby first look to you? What were the feelings when you first met your baby?
Think about the smells, sounds, sensations...
19. What are some other things that are memorable to you or that you now laugh or cry about?
20. Did you surprise yourself in any way as you dealt with the circumstances of your birth experience?
Have more ideas or want to share a link to your birth story? Feel free to do so in the comments!
Cincinnati Mother, Birth and Postpartum Doula, Childbirth Educator and Founder of the Cincinnati Birth and Parenting Network.