The 10 People You Meet While Having a Baby


Having had one gallbladder and one baby extracted from my body, and two more pushed out the old-fashioned way (babies, not gallbladders), I’ve spent my fair share of time in hospitals. Though each stay was different (e.g. goodbye major organ and the ability to drink coffee without immediately pooping vs. hello adorable newborn!), I have encountered the same kinds of people each time I’ve donned the open-in-the-back gown and confused the TV remote for the nurse call button. Don’t get me wrong, there are phenomenal physicians and remarkable RN’s out there, it’s just that I rarely run into them…

1. The Complainer: Being in the hospital is no walk in the park, but The Complainer grumbles about everything, from the thread-count of the sheets to the harsh lighting of the fluorescent bulbs.The Complainer does not appreciate the rare commodities of room service, zero laundry, and minimal responsibility.

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2. Dr. Zero Bedside Manner: I have personally experienced this doctor when he announced, on the heels of a joke, that my baby had holes in her heart. Dr. Zero has terrible comedic timing, waning compassion, and from the frequent glances at his watch, no time for you and your “issues.”

3. Chatty Cathy: Where does this woman come from?! Is she on staff? A patient? No one knows, but, like an apparition, she materializes at your door and then never. stops. talking. She wants to compare insurance coverage, but you just want to nap. Good luck with that.

4. Nurse Doom & Gloom: Meet Negative Nancy’s cousin, Nurse Doom & Gloom. She will corner you, probably during your first postpartum poo, and rage on about her under-active thyroid or the depletion of natural resources. You will nod quietly as she works up a frenzied sweat, afraid to interrupt because of her easy access to needles.

5. Hospital Photographer: No means no, woman, now get the hell out.

6. Nazi Lactation Consultant: The Nazi LC’s strict, no-nonsense approach to her (or HIS, as was my experience) job comes standard in other Nazi hospital employees. The NLC makes you feel like a horrific mother if your baby doesn’t latch, or–godforbid!–you say eff it and opt for formula. Not all LC’s are like this; just the ones with Nazi prefacing their name. You will recognize the Nazi from the helpful LC’s by their thin mustaches and the way they smash your baby’s face into your sore nipples.

7. Nosy Janitor. Listen to me carefully: Make friends with this person. He’s going to ask where you’re from, what you do for a living, and he’ll probably inquire about your burgeoning hemorrhoids. Answer all of the questions with a smile because the Nosy Janitor is your connection to extra pillows, warmer blankets, and if you establish a good rapport right off the bat, he will look the other way when he dumps your garbage and those empty Blue Moon bottles come a’tumblin’ out. What? They were a gift.

8. Over Zealous Religious Leader: A quiet knock on your door and there he is in all his glory. No, not Jesus, but some guy who wants to pray, loudly, with you. I’m not anti-prayer, but I’m anti-stranger-in-my-room-while-my-tush-is-hanging-out-the-back-and-my-boob-is-hanging-out-the-front-of-my-hospital-gown. Amen.

9. The Disgruntled Employee: The Disgruntled Employee can make or break your hospital stay. He hates his job, and he wants you on his Misery Loves Company bandwagon. While changing your bedding, the DE starts ranting about the “middle man” that provides the hospital linens: “QUALITY IS DOWN AND PRICES ARE UP! SUPPLY AND DEMAND IS A BITCH!” Valid complaint, but I’m going to focus my anger on this Greek yogurt craze. WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO FRUIT-ON-THE-BOTTOM?

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10. The Storyteller: This variety of hospital employee has no boundaries, personal or spatial. Once, an off-duty nurse actually sat in my room, divulging all the sordid details of her crumbling marriage while I watched the required “shaken baby” video. Talk about a double shot to the ol’ hormones. The whole situation was the epitome of disconcerting, but since she seemed like she needed a shoulder to cry on, I offered The Storyteller mine. She gave me extra ice packets for my mesh undies, though, so I didn’t mind too much.

Related post: The Vacation of Giving Birth

About the writer

English teacher by trade, smack talker by nature, Stephanie Jankowski loves words, hates math, and has a knack for finding the funny in everyday life. She's probably ignoring laundry right now and slinging sarcasm over on her blog, When Crazy Meets ExhaustionFacebook, or Twitter.


Shelbie 10 months ago

#11 The Students
I gave birth at a teaching hospital. Right after I gave birth to both of my children, 12 young people (who were supposed to be medical students MADE me play almost 30 minutes of Q&A.

Kara Wells Elliott 1 year ago

Dr. Poop, aka the neonatologist who seemed obsessed with the fact that my son in NICU didn’t have a BM every hour and wanted to prescribe suppositories. Also, Sensible Nurse, who finally told him, “Do YOU pop every 12 hours?” And finally, bless his heart, the funny anesthesiologist who made it all better. :)

Bethany Serrianni 1 year ago

♥ BABY!! ♥

Mandy 1 year ago

The life saving nurse who kicks your mom out of the delivery room on day two of induction so you and your husband (who had to make a bed out of chairs, one of which she stole) can get some much needed sleep. All the other nurses knew my mom so they didn’t want to say anything. This nurse (I LOVED HER) saw me stressing asked what was wrong and kicked her out. :)

Michelle 1 year ago

The NLC who totally missed that’s son was tongue tied. It wasn’t caught until he was 2 weeks old and not fixed till he was a month old. By then my milk supply was down to zilch even with pumping and my son was used to formula. Not to knock the formula as my son is now 4 yo and healthy but I truly regret not being able to breast feed.

Becky Jo 1 year ago

I did not encounter any of these!! I had both of my kids at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, MI, and the staff there is amazing. Those nurses are simply amazing!!

Amy Shaffer Waldfogle 1 year ago

how about all of the people who forget that you haven’t been doing all of this every day for years they way they have?

Shannon Sheets 1 year ago

The grandfather of the baby two doors down who keeps mixing up your door and their door over and over while you’re trying to figure out breastfeeding.

Claudia Sciales 1 year ago

I love your posts, and realized I must be VERY lucky. I’ve had 2 c-sections and 4 other surgeries…I’ve ALWAYS had a great experience. No complaints here!

Michelle Baker 1 year ago

Sad to hear. We have all had bad experiences, my first c section went bad and had trouble too. However b I’m also a nurse. Not L&D, but a mixed floor. I’m always amazed by the complaints I hear about how bad care is, their are good nurses and bad, however we spend our lives dedicated to giving the best care, sometimes made difficult by the needs of many placed on one person. You want a happy nurse, but maybe I just held the hand of a dying patient and talked a family through the ends and outs of a terminal diagnosis. Most nurse are warm, caring people who really try hard to meet everyone’s need, but just like triage, your needs are meet based on the most need. Your complaint for water and blankets are addressed while we also address pain, nausea, and misery of the cancer patient dying next door. Labor nurses might gave also been dealing with a grieving mom, who unlike you, isn’t taking their baby home, their planning their funeral. Give your nurses and docs a break. You have no idea what has already happened and how hard its been, you also don’t know what the person next door is going through.

Hsiuwen Jao-Torres 1 year ago

Omg the photographer! She insisted on coming in here to take pic after it took us an hour to put baby back to sleep, then she woke him up crying because she was trying to pose him… I can take my own pic, thank you very much

Chris Carter 1 year ago

Having been in the hospital multiple times myself- I SO GET THIS!!! Hilarious!!!

Barb 1 year ago

What about the awesome nurse? I hope you had atleast one of those during any of your hospital stays. If not, I am really sorry!

Social Butterfly Mom 1 year ago

Hilarious, as always, Stephanie! I can’t decide which I like best, but sometimes I don’t understand the baby photos and photog. THEY ALL LOOK THE SAME! And by that, I mean every baby and every photo.

    Katie Basil 1 year ago

    Oh Social Butterfly Mom, I have to wholeheartedly disagree with this statement. Not all babies are created equal and all newborn photos most definitely do not all look the same…unless you have a crappy photographer with zero creativity? But that’s ok, all these mommy blogs are ALL THE SAME to me 😉

Kat 1 year ago

Mine were

The annoyingly peppy young student nurse who couldn’t fathom why I was in so much pain during labor, because it really can’t hurt that bad, you just need to breathe through it! I had a stubborn kid who decided he was going to flip around to try crawling out of my back instead so I wasn’t allowed pain medication for the first 10 hours of my labor… around hour ten I would have been plotting her demise if it weren’t for the searing pain clouding my ability to think.

The I’m just going to assume you don’t know anything about child birth nurse, who refused to listen to me and tell me to just keep pushing! When the doctor was no where to be seen

Which brings me to the Vanishing Obgyn who decided to take a break when pushy nurse told me to push too much and I was crowning being told to stop because the obgyn wasn’t there yet.

The over friendly nurse who proceeds to carry out a conversation with you while she’s checking out your nether regions and commenting on how surprisingly elastic certain parts of them are because I didn’t tear… I don’t know why, but me personally I don’t like the compliments my vagina gets while your up close and personal with it unless you’re there on good circumstances.

Violet Neitzke-Krebs 1 year ago

Hahaha, I thought I was the only one drinking beer in there!

Robyn Parker-Travis 1 year ago

I had 4 doctors when I had my c-section. One of which I could have killed!! I was not happy! They regret not putting me to sleep. They still talk about me. I had about 7 nurses looking after me after the c-section they were amazing and so was the public health nurse who taught me to breastfeed.

Tasha Gilchrist 1 year ago

The photographer from the company contracted with the hospital to take keepsake newborn photos for you that was also wearing a gallon of powdery perfume and noticed no social cues to get out of my room; the two I.V. nurses with the worst bedside manners in the world that made me wonder if it was a job requirement. Here, let me stab you with this needle-which is how I found out my first I.V. was bad and that I needed a new one.


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