The 10 People You Meet While Having a Baby

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newborn-at-hospital

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.

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?

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

Comments

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  1. 3

    says

    I gained 100 lbs during my pregnancy! 100 POUNDS! I lost it in in a 1 1/2. The lady assisting stitching me up after my horrific c-section said, “ooooo you’re a big girl!” I said “I just had a baby”. she said, “girl you must of been big before the baby, I’m a big girl too I know one when I see one. I was a size 8/10 before the baby. NO I wasn’t it was rude as hell! I was so drugged up I forgot to report it. On another note I did have preeclampsia (sp?) and my legs were the size of two of my original legs. I was retaining tons of water.

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  2. 9

    says

    We had what my husband called the lactation nazi. She was very militant about it and made me feel horrible because I was having issues… Then wanted to talk to me about my tablet more than breastfeeding. Yea, hopefully no one else had someone like that.

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    • 10

      says

      I had them! Yes, them. And they really made me feel horrible because I had issues as well. One doctor even “tsk tsked” me saying it is impossible to not being able to breastfeed. PLUS! The hospital called us up at the house eery so often to check up on our breast feeding schedules and routines! Like, leave me alone to enjoy my baby please! Needless to say I had a rough first few months and spiralled to PPD, aided I’m sure by these peeps.

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    • 12

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      I too had the naïve med student. She was given the go ahead to put my epidural in. (First time pregnancy with unplanned twins) Well, she missed and I screamed some not too nice things. She told me it was my fault that she missed and she would have to do it again. I said a few more choice words and told her if she didn’t get it right this time, then she could just get the hell out! A more senior nurse did it the second time and it was done right. If I wasn’t having twins, I would have never wanted anymore children after that.

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    • 14

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      My foreign med student that spoke very broken English told me they were taking me back for an emergency C and got me all dressed and got herself dressed. My husband and family had JUST left for lunch and weren’t answering their phones. I went into a full blown panic attack and they had to put me on oxygen and give me meds to calm me down. My OB comes in and tells me the student jumped the gun. That my C wouldn’t be for HOURS. Could have murdered that kid.

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  3. 34

    says

    Thankfully-at least compared to this list- I’ve only had to deal with #10. This same nurse is the one who thought she knew better than I did with my babies and what they wanted. My first time around I wasn’t sure on some things but the second time around I KNEW what my little guy wanted and knew ahe was wrong. Ugh! Luckily I only had to deal with her once with each visit but that was more than enough!

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  4. 41

    says

    The nurse who inevitably thinks she knows your body better than you do (I.e., first time mom so of course you have no idea what’s happening to your body)! Ugh. I nearly birthed my oldest right onto the floor because she kept telling me “I just checked you 10 minutes ago and you were only at a 5.” Guess what lady? I said “check me again because I’m tellin ya, something extra special is goin on down there!” Lo and behold “oh my gosh! Somebody page the doctor stat, she’s crowning!!!!” Told ya so. :)

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    • 47

      says

      I’m a L&D nurse and learned 10 years ago when I started working to ALWAYS believe the patient when they say the baby is coming. Even if they are still 3cm, you NEVER EVER KNOW!!!! When our patients call out on the light and say they need to be checked, we come running!!!!!

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    • 49

      says

      I had a nurse tell me that I couldn’t have back labour and that ice and yoga wouldn’t help. I had a friend of mine buy me one of those big bags of ice from the grocery store and I laid on it until it melted everywhere! What a mess but it did help and then another nurse told it was ok that I could keep doing what helped me.

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    • 52

      says

      With my first kid, the nurse told me that most first time moms have about 2 hours of pushing ahead of them so the doctors like to have you already pushing when they get there. I pushed twice and was yelled at to stop because the doctor wasn’t there yet and my son was already crowning.

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    • 53

      says

      Fast delivery happened to me twice. At least the second time around they knew from experience (from the chart) that I wouldn’t take long to reach end stages of labor so they’d better be on the ball. I *still* wound up with a nurse delivering because the doctor couldn’t make it in time (but only after I threatened to get off the bed and give birth by myself if they didn’t stop holding that god awful towel on my baby’s head trying to keep him from coming out!). “Don’t push… Stop pushing.. ” “I’M NOT PUSHING.. it’s the contractions.. get that @%)&@$&!@)*% towel away from me!!!” Any idea how bad it hurts to have someone “holding in” the baby sans pain medications? I’m just a right little gem when I’m giving birth, yes ma’am. ;)

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    • 54

      says

      OMG I was in labor with my 6th. SIXTH… and this little teenybopper nurse kept telling me that I would push better lying flat on my back. Finally I said, “Just tell the truth… it’s easier for you guys, not for me….” and then I was like hell with it, this is #6, I could probably push him out standing on my head, just get it overwith… and I pushed as hard as I could. The teenybopper had to deal with a crowning baby and a frantic call to get the doctor in there.

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