The birth of a child is supposed to be one the happiest moments of a parent's life, but that is not always the case. Some serious drama can go down in the delivery room, as is quite evident in the following stories.
(Content has been edited for clarity.)
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"One of my friends, who is very white and a soldier in the Army, was sent back home from his deployment to be with his wife for the birth of their child.
His wife is also white. The baby was not white; the baby was black, very black.
Long story short the wife had fooled around with a guy right after my buddy went out for his deployment, and when she found out she was pregnant, she figured there was a 50/50 chance it was her husband's child and not from her other lover.
She said, 'I'm just going tell him it's his baby and hope it all works out.'
My buddy said his heart sank when he saw the doctor's eyes. The doctor saw the baby was black before he did, and the doctor knew it was about to get messier than it already was.
After the divorce, the baby's mother became a complete trainwreck, and the father was nowhere to be seen, so my buddy ended up adopting the baby that was not his."
"This was my husband's birth in 1944. His mom was in labor in a small town birthing home. It was at the local doctor's house. His mom was in a back room with the doctor and a nurse. My father-in-law was in the doctor's living room, which served as a waiting room. The doctor came out and told him there were complications and that he could save the mom or save the baby, but he had to choose.
My father-in-law got up, walked out, got a weapon out of his truck, and came back in. He pointed the barrel at the doctor and said both better live or the doctor wouldn't. He then sat down on the couch.
The doctor went back into the room with the laboring mother and ended up pulling the baby out with forceps. Mother and baby lived. So did the doctor."
"When I was in nursing school, we only had one clinical day dedicated to labor and delivery. Well, my day had gotten canceled and moved because of a blizzard, so my make up day was at an intercity hospital instead of the nice suburban hospital I had gotten for the rest of my rotation.
On the day of my clinical, I was paired with a young teenage couple. The girl was on her fourth pregnancy, though it was only the second full-term pregnancy as the others were aborted. The baby daddy was miserable the entire time, saying things like, 'Can I just leave and come back later?' He got into a screaming match with the girl's mom when she told him to stop complaining.
As soon as that baby popped out and the dad held it, he handed it back and said, 'This ain't mine,' and left the room. The poor girl was hysterically crying. He came back and started screaming at her for cheating because the baby was 'too light-skinned.' Everyone was saying babies all come out white but he started yelling at everyone who said that. He said he wouldn't see either of them until he had a paternity test in his hand and left.
He never came back."
"One of my coworkers is about to become a dad, and so his wife has been spending a lot of time at their local hospital. His wife has heard some pretty crazy stories from the nurses, including this one.
One day a guy came running down the ward hallway screaming for help that his wife was in labor and they needed the doctors to come quickly! The nurses looked around curiously and asked him, 'Ok, so where is she?'
The color drained from the husband's face as he thought it over.
He yelled, 'OH NO!' as he ran out of the hospital.
Forty minutes later, the husband returned with wife in tow. In his initial rush, he'd packed a change of clothes, the car seat, camera gear, and high tailed it to the hospital while leaving his wife at home!"
"Where to start...
1) Baby daddy and grandma are in the delivery room. We're setting up the table to deliver and cheerfully ask, 'Okay dad, want to cut the cord?' Baby daddy loses his cool. 'Not if this she-devil is in the room!' and points to the grandma. They get into a yelling match and meanwhile the patient and I make awkward eye contact while the nurse and the other resident try to calm them down. We deliver the baby and I cut the cord.
2) Couple with no prenatal care shows up in labor. End up needing a c-section. We get the baby out and I'm closing up when the baby daddy starts yelling at us and accusing us of not being real doctors. We keep on going and ignore him. He demands to talk to the CEO of the hospital and keeps on standing up and looking over the drape. At one point, he is behind me until the nurse gets him to sit down. Finally, we finish up as he's yelling at us. She never shows up for follow up appointments but later ends up with a surgical site infection. They try to sue us. I always wonder if there was some underlying abuse there.
3) Mom asks if the baby is mixed....in front of baby daddy who is the same race.
4) Baby daddy asking for paternity tests the minute baby is born. Chill.
5) Crunchy granola couple come in to see if mom is in labor. They pass out pamphlets for their birth plan. It's made to look like a playbill. Cute. Start to read it, nothing seems too off, they want to wash the baby, they don't know if it's a boy or girl and want dad to announce... Except I get to the end and they specifically request no verbal communication with mom. All communication must go through dad. No referring to the baby as 'baby,' refer to the baby as 'special soul.' Those requests were quickly ignored.
6) I'm doing an initial prenatal visit for a mom on suboxone. Good for her, trying to get over her addiction. She seems motivated, she's excited, baby daddy seems excited. Both seem like a cute couple. I'm doing a quick ultrasound in the room and he randomly asks 'so can you tell me who the dad is?'
'You need a DNA paternity test for that.'
Mom looks shocked.
'Well let's do it.'
'We don't do them until the baby is born. The method for doing it before delivery has risks associated with it so we don't do genetic testing unless we think there's a risk of a birth defect.'
'Then WHY am I here?'
Mom is bawling at this point. I ask him to leave.
7) This is sad. Mom comes in on coke with an abruption. Kid gets delivered by emergency section and goes to NICU. Brain dead. Basically only has some episodic spasms of movement. Cops tell mom she can't withdraw life support because then she's on the hook for manslaughter, so she doesn't. And the guy she put down as the dad on the birth certificate? Her husband whom she cheated on who doesn't give a crap about what's going on. The real baby daddy has no say in withdrawing life support. Made me cry.
8) The teens who get pregnant and their moms who somehow think withholding an epidural will make them think twice about premarital coitus. Okay, but let's do some birth control instead? So messed up.
9) Mom's cousin is with her as she rolls in at 9 cm with her 3rd kid. She's Snapchatting pictures of herself posing next to mom who looks very uncomfortable. We deliver baby whom she deems her 'hot lil nephew.' MA'AM HE IS FIVE MINUTES OLD.
10) Med student gets recognized by baby daddy as he helped deliver his other baby mama."
"When I was an intern, we had a woman who was eight-months pregnant get crushed in a head-on collision. The mom was pulseless on the scene, so EMS brought her in immediately. We had about a 60-second warning in the emergency room to get the OBGYN crash team and the NICU response team down.
It was clear the mom wasn't going to make it, but we had to try to keep her alive so we could do a perimortem C-section to get the kid out alive. I was on the trauma team, so while I was working on trying to keep the mom's circulation going to perfuse the uterus, the obstetrician started the delivery. We opened the woman's chest to start internal compressions and to see if there was an aortic injury we could temporize.
A C-section is usually fast; perimortem sections are faster. From skin cut to baby out and over to NICU team was about 45 seconds. They started CPR because the baby had a low heart rate and was essentially dead. That's when we found a second baby. It turns out the mom was having twins.
I joined the impromptu NICU team as we tried to save this second baby. But it became clear this was futile, and we abandoned efforts and turned all our resources to the first baby. We worked on that baby for over an hour, but we were never able to get it stabilized. We were able to get the baby to the NICU, but unfortunately, it arrested again and could not be resuscitated.
The husband and father, who was in the car as well, was physically fine besides some minor contusions. When we told him what happened, that he had just lost essentially his whole family, the poor man just collapsed. There was no crying or screaming; he just went down like a sack of potatoes. I will never forget the expression on his face; it was filled with immense pain, sorrow, and suffering."
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"A woman was giving birth to her child and didn't want her father, who likes to drink, to know. He showed up in the labor and delivery ward, absolutely smashed out of his mind demanding to meet his grandchild.
We tried to act like his daughter wasn't there. He started to yell, and the baby's father heard him and came out to ask him to leave. The wasted grandfather became very irate and started to smash the windows in the doors and the nursing station.
The father of the child tackled his father-in-law, grabbed him by his collar and dragged out of the unit, onto an elevator, and then dragged him outside.
It's sad how many wasted people show up demanding to see the new member of their family. It's a regular occurrence."
"I heard this from an elderly client who used to be an obstetrician. He was telling me stories about when he used to deliver babies at peoples' homes way back in the day.
He was telling me about his son, and I asked if he delivered his own son. He said yes and told me the most amazing, heartbreaking, and heartwarming story.
In the late '40s, the town ambulance/hearse/taxi pulled up at his little independent practice out in rural Illinois. A volunteer firefighter came in and said they had a lady in labor and they wouldn't make it to the hospital, which was over an hour away. He told them to bring her in. He delivered the baby and mom passed out. All seemed normal.
The mom later woke up, and the doctor came in to give her the baby. She started screaming, 'Get it away from me!'
The doctor was confused and couldn't figure out what was going on with the mother. She started flailing around and screaming that she didn't want to look at 'it.'
When the doctor later returned with the child, the mother still looked terrified, as if the newborn had nine heads. He finally asked, 'Well, what do you want me to do with your son?'
The mom remained silent for a long time, and as the doctor was getting up to leave, she quietly asked, 'Can you get rid of him?'
The doctor asked what she meant. She said, 'You know. Maybe just make him go to sleep so he won't wake up.'
He said it took everything in him to not beat this woman to death right then and there. He went off on a tangent about how much he loved his work working with all the new mothers in all these little towns full of 'salt of the earth' people with great family values. On and on about how happy it made him bringing life into the world and this woman wanted him to murder her baby.
When the doctor asked why she wanted to get rid of the baby, the mother said that her husband was in the military and the child was not his. She couldn't let him find out. He understood her rationale for not wanting her husband to know, but murder? He suggested family, an orphanage, and other options. She said no to all of them because she 'couldn't risk this coming back to haunt her.'
He told her he'd see what he could do and he let her rest. The next day, he tried to talk to her again, and she was more adamant about 'making it sleep.' She said she wanted to hold her baby. He refused since he thought she'd try to kill him herself. She went nuts.
In the end, he sent her home and told her that he'd given the baby to his brother who was a pastor and was unable to have children. He promised he'd never tell anyone who she was.
Then he said he 'taught her a lesson.' If she ever found herself pregnant again, she would come to him whether it was her husband's or not. If he ever found out she went elsewhere, he'd tell everyone the story. He said he did this because he was afraid she'd get knocked up and kill the next one. And he knew he'd find out if she went elsewhere because he was the only baby doctor for five towns and knew other docs at the hospitals.
She never had any other kids. Supposedly, she died from an overdose a few years later.
The doctor and his wife raised that baby as their own son. His wife wasn't able to have kids, and the pastor brother was a fib just to make her think he'd already given the baby away. He eventually told his son a watered down version of the story when the kid was older. The kid ended up becoming a plastic surgeon and had nine kids of his own. He's doing very well, he's very happy, and he probably never would have had a shot had that small town fireman tried to press on to the hospital and wound up delivering the kid in the middle of nowhere. He was convinced she would have delivered and then smothered the baby by the time they got to the hospital."
"We caught a man cracking open the anesthesia cart and stealing medication while his wife was in labor with his child.
When the police came to arrest the man, he was sobbing and kept saying over and over, 'Y'all aren't going to let me see my baby be born?' The arresting officers were both like, 'Um... Nope. You should have thought about that before.'"
"A doctor was delivering the baby via vacuum extraction, and the suction cap came off the baby's head. The baby's father thought the doctor had pulled the infant's head off, so he punched the doctor in the jaw. The doctor went straight down to the ground like a felled tree. Much yelling ensued, and people had to hold the father back before he finally realized that the baby was fine and that its head was still attached. The unconscious doctor was pulled into a chair, and another physician came in to finish the delivery.
We had to have a quick and frantic conversation at the nurses' station about whether to allow the father to remain in the room. We decided that from his vantage point, it may have appeared that the baby's head had been removed and that he had a momentary loss of reason. Once the father realized his mistake, he was horrified at what he'd done and was profoundly apologetic."
"I remember assisting with a delivery as a medical student working with a family resident physician. Usually, they let the student do a lot of it to get experience, but I remember the attending physician, referring to the resident, telling me, 'No, no, let her do it. She needs the practice. You just watch.'
When an attending says, 'No, no, She needs the practice,' it's not a good sign. Luckily the baby itself got delivered, and I thought all was good.
After a baby is born, you have to deliver the placenta by applying gentle traction on the cord to encourage progress. While the attending was distracted by the new baby, I watched in horror as the resident YANKED on the umbilical cord. Of course, it snapped. She had this look of dread on her face and with good reason.
Now we had to take drastic measures.
The attending physician was explaining to the husband what would happen next.
'We're going to take her back to the OR.'
'She's having surgery?'
'Hopefully not, sir. We're going to extract the placenta manually.'
'How are you getting in if there's no surgery?'
'Well, sir, we're able to enter through the birth canal.'
'You're gonna put some tool inside her?'
'No sir, we'll be doing a manual extraction.'
'With a hand. And arm.'
'You're going to stick your ARM up my wife?'
'That's about right, sir.'
'You mean to tell me you're going to fist my wife?'
The conversation sort of went on this way for a while. We got back to the OR, and I watched in horror as the attending put on a glove that pretty much went to her shoulder, and just dove right in. She was in past her elbow manually scraping the placenta out. The wife was loopy but not 'out' during the procedure and was providing colorful commentary.
When we finally finished and the woman was with her husband, she said, 'I swear to God, I could feel them pressing on my lungs.' The husband said, 'I thought they went in from below,' and in beautiful theatrics, she grabbed his shirt, pulled him towards her, and through clenched teeth said, 'They did.'
As for me, I decided to go into psychiatry."
"When I had my first child, I ended up having a c-section. When we made it to the post-op area, there were two other families - one on either side of us - but it seemed so quiet.
We were cuddling our new baby, and he was dozing when I realized one of the women next to me was sobbing quietly; her baby had not survived.
Then we realized the family on the other side of us had a baby with a previously undiagnosed congenital disability and the family was in shock. We were the only happy and healthy group in the unit. I asked my husband to quietly go to the nurse's station and respectfully request to be moved as soon as possible and not have our happiness add to the burdens of the families near us. I think of those moms every year on my kid's birthday."
"I was in medical school on my obstetrics rotation doing a late night shift because I want to see some births. A schizophrenic woman in her 20's came in, laboring with her sixth child.
Police had to break her door down because she went into labor and continuously screamed, 'I'm not giving birth to Satan's baby! This is Satan's baby!' The doctor on rotation looked unamused and said to the nurse, 'Sedate her a bit, we'll do a C-section if she refuses to push.'
After about 30 minutes, the doctor told me to go in and do a pelvic exam and to give him a report on her status. He went in with me, and then got called out as I was putting on gloves, saying he'd be back in a minute. I introduced myself to the patient, explained what I was doing and started the examination. I felt a contracting sensation, and the next thing I know, a baby's head pushed out into my hands. I was in shock staring at the baby when I started to scream, 'I, uh, need some help here!'
Both mother and child were healthy. After everything settled down, the mother approached me and said, 'What's your name? I'll name it after you.' It was a boy, and I am female, but she insisted I give her my name. I didn't want to mess up this kid's life, so I said, 'Henry.'"
"I was staying in the hospital with my sister while she was pregnant and have some interesting stories about the two elderly men awaiting the birth of their grandchild.
We got to know this family over the two days, and they seemed nice except for these two men. They were constantly shouting and swearing at each other the entire time. One time, the paternal father tried to ask a nurse for directions to the cafeteria, and the other dad called him a 'worthless piece of crap.' These two hated each other. It was mental.
They broke out into a full-on fist fight in the hallway and ended up knocking over some cleaning supplies. I had to help break up the fight. Let me remind you that these two were 67 and 75 years old. The hospital staff asked them to leave as they were stressing out the patients which is the last thing a woman in labor needs.
The hospital staff asked me to make sure the two men actually left the building, and when they got to the parking lot, they started going at it again. I had to break it up (again), and just before security arrived, one old guy got into a wheelchair and claimed that the other tried to flip him over. The other grandfather then walked up to the guy in the wheelchair and punched him in the face. Then the guy got up, and yep you guessed it, they started fighting again."