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To Induce Or Not To Induce, That Is The Question

By Monica Bielanko |

Pitocin? For me?

My stupid cervix is still two percent dilated.  Pretty much the same scenario as last week.  I asked the doc if he has big fingers and I might really be at a four but he just laughed.

Dammit!  I was serious.

Because it’s been so busy at the hospital lately and because he wants to be around to, you know, deliver my kid, he suggested we schedule an induction just to have one on the books.  He said he’d schedule one for next week, on the 22nd or 23rd, right when I turn 40 weeks.  But I was still gunning for that dramatic birthing scenario and suggested we schedule it for AFTER 40 weeks to give this little fella more time to come out on his own.

What was I thinking?

That puts us into March.  MARCH!  March 1st, actually, which is weird because all this time I’ve been planning a February baby.  But, oh my God I am dying, and cannot even think about going a week past my due date.  Plus, dear God, how big will he be in March?  My poor, poor vagina!

I’m thinking of calling the doctor back this morning and asking if next week is still on the table.  But I so wanted this guy to come on his own.  And he still could!  I mean, I really feel like I could go at any time.  But I’ve always said that I’m just going to go with the flow here and if the flow includes Pitocin and an induced labor then fine.  Yet it doesn’t HAVE to.  I could still tough it out to the 41 week induction date even though the thought of going to 41 weeks strikes more panic in my bones than a delivery without an epidural.  Okay, that was a lie but I am trying to convey to you my horror of being pregnant for nearly two more weeks.

If I induce, though, am I big wussy?  My pioneering heritage suggests that yes, yes I am a big, giant wussy face.  Hell, my mom didn’t have me until she was something like 43 weeks.  According to her, anyway.  She could be exaggerating.  But she says I was three weeks late.

They say sex helps bring on labor so maybe I should just get it on already with Serge, big ass and all.  But I think my vagina has grown back together, it’s been so long.  Which is all the more reason to get it on, you know, to clear a path for KID B and whatnot.

To schedule an induction next week or keep the March 1st one on the books and hope he comes before that…  That is today’s dilemma.

What say you?

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About Monica Bielanko


Monica Bielanko

Monica Bielanko was raised on the wild frontier of late 1970's Utah. She is a recovering Mormon who married the guitar player of an unknown band. She's been married to her Babble Voices writing partner, Serge Bielanko, for the past nine years. Her personal blog, The Girl Who was in the top ten of last year's Top 50 list. Read bio and latest posts → Read Monica's latest posts →

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81 thoughts on “To Induce Or Not To Induce, That Is The Question

  1. Allie says:

    I think you mentioned in an earlier post something about receiving earrings… Well, would you like purple or blue earrings? February has a purple birthstone and March has blue!

    Dumb way to decide, I know, but it’s all I’ve got!

  2. Caitlin's Concepts says:

    As a mom to 4 (Yes, FOUR) inductions (only one a semi-induction as I was in pre-term labor and they needed to speed it up for baby’s safety), I say hold out. This could very well be my “lack of a uterus that has any clue what to do” feelings speaking, but I envy anyone who has the “luxury” of going into labor naturally.

    My first was 17 days late when they finally induced. Sad thing is, I was 1-2cm at my appointment that morning.. a few hours later, at the hospital, I was 3-4cm. I think I would definitely have gone on my own that night had I just toughed it out. He ended up being 8lbs6oz, so not too bad. ;)

    The second little guy was induced at 39 weeks because of excess amniotic fluid – they didn’t want me to get any bigger because they were afraid of me hemorrhaging at delivery if my (retarded) uterus couldn’t contract properly. He was 7lbs14oz.

    Third was induced a day after his due date because my doctor was going on vacation – I wish I’d waited, really, but it was AUGUST and I was HOT. LOL He ended up being 8lbs12oz.

    My 4th, well, you can read the blog on that at:

    He was 6lbs6oz.

    I almost want to have another just to – ONE TIME – go into labor naturally, ONCE was all I wanted! ;)

  3. Lauren says:

    Don’t do the induction! I should preface this by saying I’m only 21 weeks along with my first child (also a boy), so I really can’t imagine what I’ll feel like in another 20 weeks, but my instinct tells me JUST LET IT HAPPEN. My girlfriend just delivered her baby boy 2 weeks ago, and it was a messy, messy scenario. She, like you, was sooooo tired of being pregnant and feared the baby would be huge (after the doctor kept saying he was close to 9 lbs. at 27 weeks, he was born just over 7 lbs…), so she scheduled an induction at 39 weeks. After 27 hours of labor, she had to have C-section because ultimately, the baby wasn’t ready and just wouldn’t descend into the birth canal all the way. In hindsight, she wishes she would’ve toughed it out a little longer and let him come naturally. You can do this! You’re not a wussy ass-face. It will all be over soon…just let Kid B come on his own!

  4. pixiemama says:

    First things first, call the stylist and get your hair fixed.

    Then induce. The longer you wait, the more exhausted you’ll be when your little man makes his entrace. Anyone at or near the 40-week mark is not getting enough sleep.

    I mean, I totally get the vision, but sometimes they need the nudge.

  5. JaneH says:

    Avoid being induced if you can last out that long. More likely to need interventions, labour pain is said to be much more intense and you and the baby need to be more closely monitored which means you’re much more likely to end up flat on your back which is likely to mean a longer and more painful labour experience.

    I had to be induced because my waters broke and then nothing happened for 48 hours. I would not recommend it to anyone.

  6. Caitlin says:

    I’m sure you are already aware, but keep in mind that induced labors have a higher c-section rate. Personally, I would wait it out until a week or so past you due date and see if he comes on his own, since “due dates” are more like due months anyways. Most babies know when they are ready to be born… and doctors trying to say otherwise can result in complications during delivery and for the newborn. But, I also had my baby on my due date, so I never experienced being “overdue”…

  7. Ashley says:

    I say do not induce until absolutely necessary. That’s not what you want to hear, though, right? I’m sorry. I am. But in my experience Pitocin is ugly, nasty stuff. During my daughter’s birth, Pitocin grabbed hold of me and wrenched me into a pretzel of excruciating pain. There were no undulating waves of pain, each one more intense than the last. It was just one (very high) level of pain throughout. For 24 hours. Because I was so clenched with pain that I would not dilate. For 24 hours. And then I got an epidural and the wee one shot across the room within 30 minutes. But I don’t think they give epidurals very early in induced labor because it can slow things down (right?). Anyway. Pitocin is evil.

    Either way, good luck, and I look forward to hearing baby boy’s story.

  8. LizL says:

    I totally get it, and if I were in your position (hopefully I won’t we’ll see in April) I think I would go for it too. But, being in the cushy position of 10 weeks away, I would tell you to try and wait it out. I could be completely mis-informed, but I feel like the use of pitocin in my first delivery (2 weeks early, but went into active labor, then….stopped) slowed down my progress and indirectly resulted in a c-section. Like I said, I could be wrong, I just know…for myself, I am going to TRY to hold off from being induced.

  9. Ris says:

    I LOVED being induced! I was with Ava a week before she was due. Looking back I should have waited one more day so that her birthday was not on 4-20 but whatever! I was almost 3 weeks early with Meg and she was 7 pounds 15 oz! I could not go to my due date with Ava cause I was so spoiled not having to go through those last terrible weeks with Meg. I don’t care that I am a wussy. As long as your doctor says he is good to go why torture yourself one more day than you have to! Good luck!

  10. Danielle625 says:

    I had a horrible induction experience, which landed me with a c-section because the baby just wasn’t ready to come out… Before making any choices, I would see if there really is a “reason” to induce. With the statistics of risk (40% of inductions end in c-sections) you want to make sure the risk really has a benefit.

  11. Starsky says:

    DON’T DO IT! Unless the baby is in distress, let nature take its course. Pitocin should be outlawed!

  12. Lisa says:

    I would say that the decision to be induced should have less to do with you being a “big, giant wussy face” and more with how you feel about the type of birth you want. I know it sounds all hippy granola – but if you want to avoid interventions (vacuums, forceps, scissors coming at your lady parts, a c-section) then I would avoid the induction at all costs. Inductions FAIL about 90% of the time. And by FAIL I mean your induced labour stalls and they wheel you in for a c-section. I know you’re miserable (hell, I’m miserable and I’m only at 32 weeks…) but let the little guy chill out in there for a wee bit longer. He will come when he is ready.

  13. Lydia says:

    I’m with Pixiemama–first things first, go get your hair fixed. Like you said, you’re not going to have a chance to do that for months–don’t spend KID B’s first few months looking like Vince Neil if you don’t have to.

    Secondly, I have a feeling if you scheduled the induction for next week but don’t go before then, you’ll feel like you’re rushing him once the induction arrives… you’ve talked a lot here about wanting him to come on his own, so I suspect that as much as you want him out of there, you’re probably good just leaving the 41-week induction as you scheduled it.

    Of course, if you read that and thought, “No way, I want him OUT!” then I suggest calling and scheduling an induction for next week. :)

  14. Heather says:

    Since you’re letting us share our opinions. I say hold out…there are so many reasons NOT to do an induction, but my impression is that it would also mean a lot to you to do it without…or at least take some more time to see. I totally understand the end of pregnancy all out misery fest…but once it’s over, it’s over, and while there is absolutely nothing wrong with getting induced when neccessary, there is when it might make you feel anything less than totally proud of what you accomplished..and I just get the impression that would happen, simply because it was important enough to ask the question, instead of being all “yes…do it right now”,make any sense? Not to get all birth empowerment on you, but feeling proud of yourself about your birth is important in my mind…it prepares you to be able to handle all of the “I feel like a crappy mom” moments that happen once baby is out and wishes !

  15. Candice S says:

    I begged my doctor and I had inductions with both of my pregnancies. I totally understand the urge to NOT be prego anymore. There are no medals in how you give birth. You don’t get an award for being all natural or c-section or whatever. The only important part is the end result of a healthy baby.

    My Pitocin expericience…With the first one, I went into labor the night before my induction and was not having strong contractions when I reported for my induction. I was a couple of centimeters. They gave me pitocin to move things along and an epidural. Pitocin to birth was about 8 hours with 1.5 hours of pushing. Labor #2, no labor AT ALL previous to pitocon. Was about 2.5 cm. Got epidural, then pitocin. Pitocin to birth time with #2 was about 6.5 hours with only 10 min of pushing. All this to say, a lot of people complain about pitocin and hard labors. I didn’t experience that at all. Being already in labor when I got the pitocin or not contracting at all when I got it didn’t really make a difference in time or pain. End result with both was a sweet baby.

  16. Pinkie Bling says:

    “Grown back together” OMG I am dying of laughter over here. I have no opinion to offer, other than that you are funny and pretty and I’m sure your hair looks great, and I hope Kid B makes a speedy appearance.

  17. Krystan says:

    I say hold out. My pregnancy was filled with dire warnings of a giant baby that wouldn’t fit through my vagina due to gestational diabetes, and my doctors tried to pressure me into scheduling a c-section, but I said no. Keep in mind, this was september, when it was 90+ degrees and humid here and I was so swollen my feet could not bend to the proper 90 degree angle necessary for walking. There is a reason Kid B is still where he is and not in your arms. He will know when he is done baking. And inductions suck so much. I ended up getting some help with all those fancy drugs because although I was starting to contract regularly and was in the beginning of labor, my BP spiked ridiculously high and had high levels of protein in my urine. An artificial labor is harder on you and the baby. It will suck, but try to hold out! You are strong and your body and baby will know when it is right for it to happen!

  18. Maiken says:

    I think you already know the answer that’s right for you and the baby. I understand wanting to get feedback when you’ve worn ruts in your mind with worry. You’re strong, Monica. Trust in you, and take time for naps! :)

  19. christine says:

    Go with your gut…whatever part of it the baby isn’t hogging. Not much help, but dig deep and whatever you decide, I’m sure your fam will support.

  20. Jessica says:

    I decided to induce and it was ridiculously stressful. (Not the induction, the decision.) I understand why people say hold out, but it only made me feel incredibly guilty for choosing to do it. I sobbed in my midwife’s office.

    In the end, it was FINE. Easy. We were at 40 weeks. I had everything going in favor of labor except my stupid cervix.

    Just wanted to say that you can’t predict your labor. People complain about inductions, but c-sections are also common with late babies. (Giant heads, y’all!) There’s no way of knowing what will happen if you make each choice. You could decide to induce and it could be terrible. You could decide not to induce and it could be terrible. Or either one could end wonderfully. Go with what you feel and don’t succumb to pressure.

  21. Adrienne says:

    I would avoid inductions, not fun for you or baby. Go on long walks up big hills, have sex, east spicy food, bounce on a birthing ball. Ask the doc to do a semi stripping of the membranes-basically swirl things around.

  22. gina says:

    oh gosh…2 santa-meters, that’s IT? Okay just calm down. i just asked my friend who went to 40 weeks and she said ” WHY the hell would you tell her to take an enema, G? Just tell her to take a warm bath, a glass of wine and a little hoochikootchi. Every day for a week.”

    …and since my va-jayjay ain’t seen the light-a-day for nearly a decade I will add “twice a day even”. BTW. I was informed in nursing school that enemas have been helpful in hastening the process but I remember one of your readers suggested the ‘magic bullet’ which is a Ducolax suppository. I’d ask my doctor first.

    As for the hair, you should go back and get it fixed. Get rid of the Motleys.Life’s hard enough without feeling like an old man.

  23. Charlie says:

    Hey Monica, I have just recently found your blog….love it :) As for induction. is there a medical reason that you need to be induced? Like you or your baby are in imminent danger without it? If no then you really need to think hard about whether you are willling to take the risks involved of being induced just for the sake of convenience, for you and your baby. Higher risk of c-section, fetal distress and more pain in labour, a very medicalised birth, continuous monitoring – being but a few. For your 2nd baby to be 2cm is great already :) I was 1cm at the start of labour with no 2, cervix very thick, but he still came an hour later! Give your body a chance and when your baby is ready he will come! Whatever you decide to do, lots of luck and easy labour vibes to you, looking forward to a BA xx

  24. Sophie says:

    Please remember that babies come when they are ready, not when you are ready – it is the biggest lesson in patience, which you need in abundance as a parent!

    Induction is only necessary in a medical emergency and is far more likely to lead to a labour with intervention. Leaving the waters in tact is far more comfortable for the baby, and less intense for you. Pitocin induction stops the body’s natural flow of oxytocin meaning that it generally takes longer for the body to recover from birth.

    Remember full term is a five + week window, not a single due date. Babies come at 40 weeks, 41 weeks, 42 weeks and beyond ….

    Your baby will be no bigger or harder to birth if he/she stays in for another week or two – someone once told me that an 8lb baby is generally easier to deliver than a 5lber.

    Do what is safe for you and your baby!!!

  25. Dayna says:

    Aw.. definitely go get your hair fixed!

    I’d go with whatever scenario you feel like you can deal with mentally. If you really can’t take another minute, don’t feel bad about scheduling an induction.

  26. (London) Amanda says:

    Just so as it’s ion the record, Paul told me last week that your baby is coming on 18th February – good grief, that’s tomorrow. So who knows, maybe all this is academic…. we’ll be watching this space…..
    From a mum’s point of view, you’ve done brilliantly and I don’t know how you’ve lasted so long (mine were born at 36 and 34 weeks respectively and i didn’t think I could last another day let alone a few more weeks). Whatever decision you make will be the right one for you and Baby B – there are no wrong answers here.

  27. PeekyToe says:

    I begged my doc to induce me at 38 weeks w/ twins. He did. I have felt guilty ever since. I should have let my sweet babies come when it was time, not induce because I was very uncomfortable, and if I’m honest with myself, because I wanted my parents to see the babies before they were leaving the country and wouldn’t get a chance to meet their grandbabies for months. I induced for completely selfish reasons and I’m so sorry that I did.

  28. Danielle says:

    I say schedule that shit at 40 weeks. You’ll probably go before then anyway, but if not it’ll be time. I induced with both my babies and things couldn’t have gone more smoothly. I did catch quite a bit of heat from the moms I know who are in the super natural camp. The one that gave me the most grief was planning a home birth and ended up being in labor for 2 days before she had to be rushed to the hospital for a C-section.

  29. TLR says:

    Depends on how big B is. I’ve delivered two nine pound babies, both with the help of Pitocin. The second was induced a week early because I told my doctor there was no way I was delivering a ten pound boy through my delicate girl parts. Do what you need to do for your own body and peace of mind. I say get it over with and at least be able to sleep when your boy sleeps. Good luck!

  30. amy says:

    I have heard that there is a higher percentage of women who needed c sections due to the stress that inducing labor caused. there are a few other commenters here who have seen it first hand. I’d say let nature take it’s course.

  31. ali says:

    keep the march induction date!! don’t make it earlier. if you really want him to come on his own, you will be really happy that you waited if he does indeed come on his own. i know it seems like forever now, but in the grand scheme of things, what is two weeks? in the mean time, you can try doing things yourself to “induce” labor. like you said, you can have sex, stimulate your nipples (i started using a breast pump at 41 weeks and was in labor the next day), etc. hang in there!!

  32. J says:

    Pitocin is awful. Try to self-induce (I already posted what worked for me – the castor oil/lemon juice/french onion soup method). Have sex, eat spicy foods – anything that will jump start that uterus and give it a kick in the, uh, uterus. But pitocin is awful – makes for really hard, ugly contractions right way.

  33. Nancy says:

    For what it’s worth, my daughter was in your situation a few weeks ago and she went to a pre-natal acupuncturist and had the baby the next day. Seven days before the due date. Don’t know about Utah, but in Los Angeles, acupuncturists are abundant.

  34. Elizabeth says:

    I would agree with everyone who said NOT to be induced. I got toxemia with my daughter (my first), and had to be induced two weeks early, but she was not ready to come out so it was a 30+ hour nightmare of pain and Demerol (which is nasty, horrible shit and should be outlawed; it pretty much erased my brain for about two weeks), ending with an emergency c-section. My daughter had some problems and stopped breathing once, so they life-flighted her to a bigger hospital with a neonatal icu, and I blame that on the early induction, the Demerol and whatever else they gave me. Fortunately after some treatments there she was ok and perfectly healthy after that, thank God. Of course I know not every induction goes like that but I would avoid it if at all possible. You’ve made it this far, you can make it another two weeks, and it may not be that long anyway; the baby could come any time. I hope it is soon and that everything goes very well!

  35. Amanda says:

    I only had one child. She was an IUGR baby – very small. Doctor monitored me through the last month and decided he wanted to induce at week 39 because she wasn’t gaining enough weight. Well, I started going into labor the night before the scheduled induction. The pitocin drip was started at 9; I had my daughter at 11:30am. Short labor, but extremely painful. No time for an epidural. I reckon she was on her way out anyway and this pitocin thing made it very raid and very painful. I remember wanting to rip the cords and monitors of off me and crouch with my back to the doctor…no go! I had a healthy, though skinny 4lb 6oz girl and have only wished that I hadn’t had the pitocin… a semi-natural childbirth?

    Oh – I had Chinese food the day before and got a mani-pedi.

    Good luck.

  36. Just Jill says:

    First – yes – get the hair fixed to your satisfaction. You deserve to feel beautiful.
    Two – go have the chicken-garlic pizza thing at Cafe Trio. It’s said to have magical labor inducing powers. I’ve heard all you have to do is ask for the pregnancy pizza. Baby should be born approximately 48 or so hours later. (Not sure of any scientific proof, but it’s a long lived rumor, and it’s pizza by god, labor or not, it’s PIZZA!)
    Three – Enjoy Violet one last time as an only child; even her perfect little world is about to be turned upside down.
    Finally, it’s your ultimate decision, but I think you should let the little dude make his appearance when he’s ready. With a little encouragement from the pizza, of course.
    Good luck, cannot wait to meet the little man. :)

  37. Ana says:

    Monica, I am only 15 weeks pregnant and so far 3 great things have happened during my pregnancy: the home test definitely had a cross (early Dec.), I heard my baby’s heartbeat and saw him/her playing bungee jumping with the umbilical cord (late Jan), and then last week I discovered your blog. I come from a long line of “pregnancy is THE BEST time of your life”, it makes you feel so alive and special and nothing, except motherhood beats pregnancy. Sure, you have the occasional morning sickness but that’s nothing that a cracker first thing in the morning won’t cure…. Well, I don’t think pregnancy is at all THE BEST, I think it sucks. It’s not “morning” sickness, it’s all day sickness, crackers just give extra consistency to all the puke coming out, you pee when the heaving gets bad, you don’t sleep because your peeing all the time. What is THE BEST about all that? So, to top it all off I was feeling so miserable because my baby doesn’t even have all his organs and I am already failing as a mother, I felt SO guilty for not loving my pregnancy. Sure, I was very excited and happy to be a mom, but I was (in my mothers words) “creating a toxic uterine environment”. She also let me know how ungrateful and horrible I was for complaining about my pregnancy when so many women are willing to do anything to be in my shoes. As if I didn’t know that! I am 35, my husband 39, everyone told us how difficult it would be, and during all the time it took to run tests and make sure that I was healthy enough to conceive (I have a hereditary cholesterol problem and the Dr. wanted to be sure my arteries and heart had no signs of disease) all I kept repeating to myself was that I should not worry if it took some time, it would happen, and given the fact that I now live in France, IVF is a much more available option. Well, NOBODY felt luckier than me when, not 5 days after the “go-ahead” form my doctors I got pregnant! Who else gets pregnant after 1 single try?!?! So, I was also feeling guilty for wanting it so badly, and then feeling so physically sick about it, no need for my mother and my sister to remind me… But it was very hard to loose 10 pounds in 2 months (I am down to 110, because of my cholesterol problem I am very careful of my weight), feel nauseated with the smell of my husband, of the streets, of the neighbors’ cooking, not seeing the sun for 15 days at a time, feeling cold, except for when I am taking a shower. So, just when I felt I really made a huge mistake thinking I could be a mother, I found your blog, and it has made a HUGE difference. Thanks to you I don’t feel I will be a terrible mother; I think being a good mother and not loving the 9 months it takes for the bun to be ready are compatible. Before this blog I thought all women loved being pregnant, I just never seemed to question that. I left my country (Colombia) to get my post graduate degree, met another Colombian, got married, moved to France and while I feel that it has made me a better person to be able to live and interact with people from other cultures and other life experiences I guess a little of that Catholic society upbringing (though I have never been religious, and my family does not go near a church even if they are paid to do it) has stuck with me. For some reason my Colombian family and friends never mention the “icky” side of pregnancy and they frown upon other people doing it. And worst of all they saddle people into feeling guilty about everything they do or say, when those feelings are actually natural!
    So, anyway, all this introductory paragraph, just to say: if you want to get induced next week but feel guilty about wanting it, well screw the guilt! If you really do want to go with the flow and its just the sleepless nights talking, then wait 1 more week. You have the luxury of being able to make a decision, in France all pregnancies are calculated to last 41 weeks (of course! they HAVE to be different from the rest of the world!), and NO doctor (at least the 3 ones I have spoken to) will induce before unless absolutely medically necessary…. I think you will make the right decision, from everything I’ve read you make your decisions weighing whats best for the baby, and what you know you can push yourself through. Whatever you choose, you and KidB will be fine!

    Good luck, and THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

  38. Stephanie says:

    Hold out….My first was an induction at 42 weeks (!) and it was horrible (the contractions, the lack of progress, the eventual forceps)…My second was natural at 40 weeks 5 days and was wonderful…I re-live the memories of that birth fondly, whereas the first gave me PTSD!

  39. CS says:

    I was induced at 41 weeks. I had the option to wait until 42 but I was sooooooo miserable- not as miserable as you, Monica,, but very, very miserable, sick and uncomfortable. At the time I was agonizing over the decision, but once I made it, everyone- my doula and at the doctor’s office congratulated me! No will push you one way or the other because of medical liability, but seriously- waiting longer can create its own kind of physical stress.
    You will be attached to monitors, iv’s etc. You can’t move around as freely as you could without…but I was not moving “freely” by 41 weeks! I could barely waddle to the bathroom!! My labor took a really long time because they started me off with a milder induction drug which was some kind of vaginal suppository. And yes, pitocin is powerful- but if you are planning to get an epidural, then it’s manageable.
    Being that I had a terrible pregnancy, wanted to get the birth over with and was going to get the epidural- I would induce again, no question.

  40. Hillary says:

    Hey Monica,

    I really have enjoyed your honesty in reading your blog and your posts on babble. I never usually follow babble posts by other bloggers but I always read yours.

    I really hope you don’t get an induction. And not even set a date for one. I agree 100% with what the other commenters have said. Wait it out, the little guy will come when he is ready, and that is how it should be. Remember that due dates are generally just a “guess” and can be wrong, sometimes meaning that if a woman is induced too early the baby could actually be preterm. I hope he comes quickly, but on his own watch.

    Thanks for sharing your life. I always enjoy reading.
    Good Luck!!!!

  41. Lee says:

    Don’t knock the 40wk pregnant sex. With my second I was postdates and my husbands prostaglandins were recommended by my midwife as the best natural method to get labor going. It was hilarious and surprisingly fun and relaxing – and baby came without Pitocin. I am convinced semen works!

  42. Steph says:

    You’re not over your due date yet and the baby has plenty of time to arrive on his own. I wasn’t showing any signs of movement 3 days before I went into labour. Obviously everyone has their own priorities but for me I wouldn’t consider induction until I was past the due date. That’s just me. Good luck and I hope it’s a quick one, either way!

  43. Perhaps says:

    Go the sperm route. It totally brings on labor. And since you have not had it in a long while, Serge can give you a double dose of the helpful stuff.

    Inductions suck and they totally make for a very hard and hurtful labor.

  44. Lee says:

    I failed to mention my midwife’s classic advice re: husbands semen – “It gets the baby in, and it will get the baby out.”

  45. Jenny says:

    Babies are unpredictable (you may have picked up on this already). If I was making the decision, I would not do the induction. Unless there is a medical necessity and either you or the baby is in distress, I feel like induction puts too much stress on you and the baby. Having both induced and not induced deliveries, I can say I much preferred the non-induced delivery. I felt it went so much more smoothly, my body was ready, my baby girl was ready, and I didn’t feel as drained afterwards. Since I am not making the decision, you have to decide how comfortable (or not) you are, and what you want to do. Who knows, he may come tomorrow and surprise you.

  46. Kristina says:

    I would try all the natural methods to induce. Maybe some Raspberry Tea? Sex is definitely a good one. Even really good foreplay can get things moving along. Sorry if that is TMI for you but I went through the same thing with my son and so I totally understand what your feeling.
    Schedule a day where you plan on resting up before the baby comes. That is what I did and my water broke that morning. LOL

  47. Steph says:

    P.S. Go back and demand to get your hair fixed! Or go somewhere else and get it looking fabulous! For sure.

  48. Kate says:

    I would go back and get your hair the way you want it and then get bizzy with Serge. All of my friends who’ve gotten induced ended up with C-Sections, and the recovery is long and very painful.

  49. Opus says:

    A friend recently had #3. Her first two pregnancies went longer than 40 weeks and the second was an emergency c-section. She fully expected to be overdue. At 38 weeks she went to the doctor and there was no sign of delivery any time soon. Three days later, baby showed up. By far the easiest delivery she’d ever had. Just because the doctor doesn’t think you’ll deliver anytime soon, doesn’t mean that you won’t. And I vote for not inducing, unless there is a medical issue. Your baby will arrive when he’s supposed to.

  50. Amy B. says:

    I agree with everyone who said your first order of business is to get your hair fixed. At no charge.

    As for the induction… It’s a tough call. I was induced with my daughter at 41 weeks 3 days, after I had told the doctor I did not want to be induced because of the risk of C-section, but he said I had to at 10 days past my due date. They started the induction on Monday evening, and my daughter was born early Thursday morning. They couldn’t get me to dilate enough to even start Pitocin until late Wednesday morning, and I got the epidural Wednesday afternoon after they had to break my water and the baby’s heart rate dropped and I had a panic attack. Then I finally started dilating because I was relaxed enough to do so. So I was strapped to a bed and fetal monitors from Monday night through sometime late Thursday morning. My husband (a physician) and I had to talk the doctor out of a C-section on Wednesday afternoon. My daughter was 8 lbs 11 oz, and I pushed for 40 minutes. And tore mightily.

    I will not be induced again if there is no medical reason to induce. I will tell any doctor/midwife I deal with for any potential future pregnancies the same. I will do the stress tests and amniotic fluid checks as many times as they want after I pass my due date, but I will not be induced again. I am not afraid of birthing a large baby. Next time I will know better.

    Then again, my girlfriend has been induced for all three of her babies and they all went swimmingly, so who’s to say?

  51. Megg says:

    I was induced and I had both an easier delivery than most as well as NO C-Section.

    Here is the answer: Everyone either has or hasn’t been induced and everyone either has or hasn’t had a c-section. Everyone had a pleasant, crappy or neutral experience. Toss in all the ways to mix and match those options and you get no definitive answer.

    Go with your gut and do what you feel is right. Don’t pay any attention to the mommyknowitalls who want to tell you that whatever way you decide is not the perfect way or best way (because its not the way they chose, or wish they could have). Do what you want to and what your doc recommends. I’m sure you’ve chosen a doctor you trust, as many of us do.

    Good luck and congrats!

  52. WildernessBarbie says:

    Patience, Grasshopper! If you’ve been a big proponent of a natural vaginal birth, you’ll likely not regret waiting in the long run, but might really regret rushing things along, especially if it results in a painful, traumatic birth with or without a C-section.
    Something to consider… given the much higher rate of C-section with an induction, what’s worse… dealing with the relative knowns of your uncomfortableness right now for an extra week or two, or dealing with the extended recovery time of a week or two with two children and possible complications of a c-section. Will you have the extra help you might require for that extended period of time available to you? Best of luck to both of you, what ever route you go!

  53. Sandy says:

    Pitocin is evil. It brings contractions on steriods. Induce only if you or baby are in distress.

  54. liss says:

    if you want a c-section go for the induction ..
    chances are better if u can wait till march but im betting this baby will be a 43 weeker like his mama and we all know u wont wait until then ..
    u have this child for the rest of your life .. whats the rush?
    be grateful youre not in 30c with 90% humidity
    make sure your babies back is on the left hand side of your tummy
    and just harden up :D

  55. Deirdre says:

    What about the acupuncture idea or homeopathic remedies? Induction is rough on the mother and the baby and should not be used unless mother and/or baby are in medical distress. Good luck :)

  56. Hanni says:

    I think…wait until you really can’t stand it any longer, then induce. Then you know you waited as long as you could and you won’t have any guilty feelings about it. And, maybe he’ll just come out on his own before then!

    But whatever you decide to do, PLEASE let us all know when you guys head in! We’re all so excited for you!

  57. ChrissyD says:

    I have to say I was laughing hard at the thought of your tiger-rocker hair. Sorry.

    I thought getting induced sucked big time. Big time. And because the labor is being augmented the contraction pain was much worse. It comes on quick & fierce. If there’s not a clear reason for being induced, I’d say hold off.

    Oh and playing with your nipples can help bring on labor. Really.

  58. Melissa says:

    I avoided an induction with our fourth and final baby – born in June. I was pretty adamant about NOT which is kinda rare these days. I made it to 8 days after his due date when my water broke – barely. (I mean, teeny, tiny, trickle). Once I got to the hospital to confirm – they started the pitocen. SO, having being ‘against’ an induction and going 8 days later only to receive one was pointless. The 8 days past the due date were the longest of my life – I’m not kidding. I was miserable with each passing day – physically it was so uncomfortable, but mentally it was brutal. In hindsight- I probably would’ve gone the induction at 40 week route…. Now, had the baby came naturally a day or two late, my input may vary! I could not imagine going an extra 6 days to make it a full 2 weeks late. Seriously. It was not worth it! Good luck though!! As it has been said – we all cannot wait!! : )

  59. Nik says:

    You’ve held out this long, you can wait it out an extra week or two. And maybe reframe it in your head as your last precious days/ weeks being a mom of one, the last few days/ weeks of being a family of three. Once Kid B comes, your family dynamic will forever change. That’s what made the final days of my second pregnancy bearable (I had both my babies 5 days past my due date). That, and the thought, “every day is a day closer”.

  60. Phil says:


    I’m just the stupid father, but ‘ve seen both with my wife…it’s no different. Induce and have your Feb. baby with your doctor…you don’t want some stranger taking care of business. Labor is labor…there’s always drama. The water breaks in the car or in the hospital…who cares….no need to hold out if your doc says the boy’s ready to come out.

    Also…sex help a lot if you won’t induce…(according to our MALE obgyn.

  61. Naomi says:

    Definitely get your hair fixed. But don’t get an induction. Inductions suck. Srsly.

  62. Shannon B. says:

    Go get the hair did fixed! You will feel soo much better. If you want an induction, go get one. I was induced with both kids. With BOTH of them it didn’t work the first time we tried it. Seriously, didn’t work. I came back a week later and it was almost textbook. Even though it didn’t work on the scheduled day, there was relief in that I tried. So, you can always jump ship. Always.

    if you are ready to try some of the old wives tale remedies. “The Pizza” that you have most likely heard of is out here in California. The name is Skipolinis, Antioch, Ca. Look them up. They ship it overnight. I’m just sayin…

    Let me know if you need more details.

    Good luck with all of this. I’m thinking of you and sending you water breaking thoughts!

  63. Alexandra says:

    I have been reading your blog and here throughout your pregnancy, and at this point I am wondering: you want another baby, but hate being pregnant/giving birth/breastfeeding (adding up to: all of it, except the sex) SO MUCH and are not determined to go with it naturally – why on earth not just adopt??

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you for a quick and natural delivery and I hope you’re holding your little boy in your arms soon!

  64. GD aka PookMa says:

    I couldn’t make an induction appointment until 1 week past the due date. I ended up being 9 days late and it was awful.
    Whatever decision you make will be the right one. However, I’d say “go for it.” Hopefully, you’ll go as soon as they break the water. Sometimes, going the pitocin route can be pretty intense.
    My best to you and your beautiful family.

  65. ceridwen says:

    OK Monica, I have to chime in. I think SO MANY women can relate to this and it’s such a good question. Do what you think is best but here are a couple of things to think about in addition to the thoughts posted in the 63 comments above (!): Your vagina may actually be better off if you wait. Sorry to get right to the vagina, but.. who knows, labor can go any number of ways but the weight or head size of a baby is not going to matter with a 7 day difference… and also, starting labor when your body is not totally ready can make it a tougher labor. Labor is not easy. But labor with induction– though convenient, and God knows you want to be DONE– can be rough on the body. Artificial oxytocin– pitocin– doesn’t have the soft side that your natural oxytocin has. Anyway, that’s just what I wanted to say b/c I really do feel for you and I really do want the best for your body (vagina!) coz that’s what I wanted. Maybe go with your instincts and try to push that induction date back… you never know! You still might go into labor all on your own. So have sex– preferably the kind you both like (his semen can trigger labor hormones, and so can your orgasm). Get a massage. Spend more time alone if you can. Get your hair done… And see what happens. Ok. I’m done. Good luck!!!!!!

  66. Ellen says:

    I haven’t read all the comments, but go watch “The Business of Being Born”. If you have Netflix it is available through instant streaming. It will soooo pump you up for what you are about to do. And I think it will help you make an informed decision. Just an idea! Best of luck to you!

  67. Emily says:

    I was induced a week early due to various complications and had a lovely birth with no interventions or meds aside from the Pitocin. And my baby boy was 9 lbs, 2 oz! I know it doesn’t go that well for everyone, but inducing is not always the harbinger of doom people say it is. That said, I would stick with your gut instict. You wanted to give that baby some extra time, and I think your instinct was probably a good one. Trust yourself!

  68. ldancer says:

    If you can, if it’s safe, I’d say, wait. Let the baby come naturally. As the senior midwife in the birthing center I worked with said to me when I was hitting the 40 week mark, “No method of induction, natural or chemical, will make labor start if the cervix isn’t ready”. Hang in there. It’s frustrating, and uncomfortable, but the baby will come when the baby is ready!

    I went to nearly 42 weeks and then, out of sheer desperation, went to the local acupuncturist and begged her for a treatment to get the baby out. My daughter arrived two days later, 9.5 pounds and perfectly, fabulously healthy. 40 weeks is just an estimate. Some babies want a little more time in there. It’s OK. It’s better for both of you. Why would you want that experience if you don’t have to have it? That’s my take, anyway; I don’t wish to sound judgmental. It is your choice.

    Good luck whatever you decide. Safe labor!

  69. leyla momeny says:

    my baby was ten days late. i was induced. ended in c-section and i am still miserable and upset about it, although i tend to not think about it, until i read something like this and it brings back all the feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelings, nothing more than feeeeeeeeeelings.

    ok. seriously – it was the biggest mistake ever! i’m still mad at the world!!
    the doctors and midwives acted like i was putting the babes to risk by waiting any longer (and this was a hippie hospital in SF!).

  70. leyla momeny says:

    btw, i tried acupuncture, spicy food, running up and down stairs, and EVERYTHING else.

    anyway – why on earth would you induce if you are not significantly past the due date? when i say “you” i don’t mean you, personally. it just doesn’t make sense.

    recovering from a c-section is not fun. the women who give birth vaginally after pitocin/induction are FREAKING AMAZING!!

  71. Tricia L says:

    I’m a nurse so I’ll give you my medical opinion….Pitocin sucks…try to avoid it if you can. Listen, even with Vince Neil hair you are one hot momma. But if it is making you sad demand they fix it. Much love.

  72. L says:

    Well, Alexandra, I have no special link to Monica’s brain, but I imagine it’s because a) adopting is extremely hard to actually do in practice and b) they want another biological child. People do, you know – that’s why we all exist. They also, no doubt, have a plan for their lives, which is having a child about now, not whenever it is possible for an adoption to go through, which could be years from now.

    As for ‘hating’ it – well, here, she has a job, which is telling people what pregnancy is really like, in an open and humorous way. There is not a huge amount of information about that around. On her personal blog, she can write whatever the hell she wants. It’s also just possible that at this stage, she might frequently not write unless she has something very specific on her mind, which, during pregnancy, is likely to be “I am having an unpleasant symptom related to pregnancy”. Because she’s having A DIFFICULT PREGNANCY.

    I really don’t get the impression she hates the whole thing, which includes a large part you left out – PARENTING. Have you read her posts about that? I don’t think she hates that little component, do you?

    People telling others they shouldn’t complain about pregnancy really piss me off, if you couldn’t tell.

  73. L says:

    Also, Monica, I want to give both you and Ana a telepathic hug. I guess my opinion is that if you can possibly manage it, I hope you will not need an induction, mostly because I hate to hear of anyone having a harder labour than perhaps they might otherwise have done (although obviously there’s no way of knowing).

  74. AManda says:

    EVeryone is gonna tell you horror stories and there are those who had good experiences with induction thatll tell you to go for it, then there are the dr/midwife wannabes who will tell you its the most horrendous decision you could ever make. Im here to say my choice to be induced was the BEST decision I ever made & if I had it to do all over again id do it the same way. Only YOU know whats best for you and your baby. Dont let others’ opinions make up your mind! Good luck! And p.s. – the pitocin drip was not as horrible as everyone says. Im so sick of hearing that bs.

  75. AManda says:

    OH and another p.s. Lol…i was induced and had my daughter with no pain meds no epodural no nothing and I lived so it is totally doable!

  76. Kiki says:

    Look how far you’ve come. What’s a rotten two more weeks?? That’s the easy part! Your son will initiate labor when he is ready to BREATHE…a hormone will emit from his lungs  (when they are mature and capable of maintaining life on the outside) and interact with your body and then labor will begin. I mean, when you look at it that way(it’s about my child not me), the choice is easy, IMHO. Do you really think your child gives a hoot about its birth stone, birth month, or cutesy birth date? It just wants to be able to breathe  Do not induce.  This coming from a mama who went to 42 weeks twice and lived to tell about it.  You can do it!!!!!

  77. Amanda says:

    Go watch “The Business of Being Born”- it’s instant on Netflix.

  78. Sarah Myers says:

    I was induced at 42 weeks. Was dilated 2-3cm for weeks, braxton hicks contractions but nothing painful. I waited a while for my body to do it’s thing, but it needed a nudge. I had a wonderful birth of a nearly 9lb, 21in baby. I would induce again if I was in the same situation.

  79. Scarlett says:

    It’s interesting; a postpartum doula friend of mine just posted about a client who was having a hard time recovering from a cesarean after an induction. She said no one ever told this client that induction would dramatically increase her chances for having a cesarean. Has anyone ever mentioned this to you? Incidentally, I was at a bridal shower today where there was an adorable little 10 month old girl. The subject of my birth doula work came up and I was told the story of this girl’s birth and how it ended in cesarean. For a few hours everything seemed fine, until they discovered that mom was bleeding internally. She needed 7 units of blood in order to make it through. Rare, but definitely not unheard of. Cesareans can be life-saving procedures, but they also carry a significant amount of risk. If you are healthy and your baby is healthy, I would say that the risks of induction far outweigh the benefits. My first baby came on her own at 41 weeks and was a perfect 8 lbs 2 oz. She came out just when she was ready. You’re not overdue if your pregnancy continues to 41 weeks any more than you are premature if you go into labor at 39 weeks, you know?

  80. Megan says:

    I was induced at 39 weeks because I was huge, the baby was huge (for my 5ft 3in frame), and I was having trouble breathing because of it. He also was very comfy and hadn’t dropped. My cervix wasn’t dialated AT ALL. They put me on Pitocin early in the morning and I will say it did cause a lot of pain during each contraction. I’m eternally grateful for my OB who told me to get the epidural when I needed it. I was 2 cm when I got it. I don’t think it slowed anything down too much. In fact, I think it relaxed me because I went from 4cm to 9cm in just a couple of hours. My “little” boy (8lb, 15oz) was born around 9PM that night. It was definitely the right choice for my situation!

  81. Melissa B. says:

    I was induced with both my 2nd and 3rd daughters following a rather easy all-natural birth of my first child. I did the whole pitocin thing and epidural with my second child. And, according to advice that I should get up and walk a.s.a.p. following the birth, I took a leisurely stroll around the maternity ward. I chose to view all the other new babies with mine looking the cutest, of course. But with my third one, I had waited too long to receive the epidural. By the time I was desperate enough to ask for it, she was already crowning. Fortunately, the delivery nurse massaged my perinium area prior to birth so I did not have to receive an episiotomy. That was such a pleasant addition to the birth. Now, with my fourth and last child’s birth quickly approaching any day, I am willing to go all natural for as long as possible. I hope that again the delivery nurse is a good perinium masseuse. And not going to feel the least bit guilty for asking for drugs whenever I feel they are necessary. I just hope that I again do not wait too long!

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