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Midwifery. 2001 Dec;17(4):302-13.

Women's expectations and experiences of childbirth.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

to explore, describe and understand the expectations during pregnancy and subsequent experiences of childbirth in primiparae.

DESIGN:

a qualitative study using a phenomenological approach. Data were collected using unstructured, tape-recorded interviews in late pregnancy and at two weeks post birth.

SETTING:

the north of England.

PARTICIPANTS:

eight pregnant women, expecting their first baby.

FINDINGS:

the women all wanted to take an active part in their labour and the feeling of being 'in control' was the main finding and the 'essence' of this study. This was achieved through support from partners, the positive attitudes of the midwives caring for them during pregnancy and labour, information giving during pregnancy and labour and being able to make and be included in decision making during labour.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE:

if women are to be empowered by making choices for childbirth and feeling 'in control', then it is important for midwives to explore and discover the wishes and feelings of women in their care so that realistic expectations can be promoted and then hopefully fulfilled.

Copyright 2001 Harcourt Publishers Ltd.

PMID:
11749063
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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