Contemplating An Epidural or Drug Free Delivery

Jun 9, 2017

This post was written before little Zain’s arrival and although my birth story will give you a glimpse into how I delivered, I thought this was an important discussion to have and would love to hear your thoughts! 



Dress details here


Early in my pregnancy, a patient’s mother of mine who is a Doula asked me what my birth plan was. Without hesitation, I happily exclaimed back “Drugs!” I’m fairly certain she thought I was joking, but I in no way was. My plan all along has been to get to the hospital in time for those delicious drugs. I was actually totally unaware of the existence of Birth Plan’s until I was pregnant enough for people to notice and ask me about mine. 

Before I ever experience a contraction, I was certain I needed the medication. I’ve heard stories upon stories about how painful and excruciating the pain was prior to the epidural from so many friends and thought, “Why would I want to feel that?”

I’m a science based gal and realize that no matter what ideas I have in my head about how I want Labor and Delivery to go, I truly have no control. I trust the medical professionals in the room to make the best decision for me and my child. So, whether I want an epidural or to attempt a drug free delivery I know it’s not entirely up to me. My doctor asked me recently that in the case that everything goes smoothly and I could deliver without medication, would I want to? 

Gosh, now I don’t know. The more I read about drug free deliveries and talk to friends that have done it, the less horrible it seems. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a glutton for pain and deep down I think these women may have just blocked out the horrific suffering because they love their children so much.

I am however, someone who worries about rare side effects. Crazy things have happened to me before and although I don’t want to make the decision based on fear I do worry I’ll never feel the same. I also struggle with if I would really be able to do it. I don’t have the highest pain tolerance and am honestly scared I would tire from labor and not be able to push without drugs.


With little time to go, I’m still a bit torn and would love to hear your experience either way! 





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  1. I still have 20+ weeks before I’ll be delivering (hopefully!) but I’ve already given this some thought. I’m sort of on the other end of the spectrum where I’d like to try without drugs unless I feel like I really want them. I’m aiming for a drug free pregnancy (so, no Tylenol for my headaches, etc.) and planning to educate myself about some non-medicine methods to manage pain during labor. BUT, I’m not unreasonable! My birth plan is to give it the old college try. 🙂 If I want an epidural or some medication for pain, I’m not going to deny myself. I know some women have a difficult time relaxing enough to dilate without a little help from medication, and sometimes a C-section is necessary. I don’t think there are any awards given out for a medicine-free natural delivery, and I’m totally open to alternatives. I also think that every woman is different, has a different pain tolerance, and every labor is wildly different than the next. If “healthy mom and baby” is the goal, it shouldn’t matter too much how you get there. I’m so excited that your baby boy is already hear, and I look forward to hearing about your experience!!

    • I’m impressed you’ve already thought about this! Someone asked me the other day and I was like, uhhh, just to have the baby come out healthy?! Hahaha! I should probably start thinking about it more, but at the end of the day, I just want everyone to be safe & healthy! Can’t wait to read Zain’s birth story Shaheen!!!

      • Haha! We still have so much time to think about it! I’ve had some OB friends and I’ve worked with nurses in the past, so I’ve heard some labor and delivery details over the years. I think the best plan is just for everyone to be healthy, because that’s what matters the most! I’ve also heard stories of women coming in with huge labor plans and being so against using interventions and they don’t want to stray from the plan. You just never know how it’s going to go, so I think flexibility and grace are key. 🙂 Looking forward to Shaheen’s birth story of little Zain too!

    • I’m so impressed too! I totally agree – at the end of the day happy and healthy is the most important and I am so excited for your journey! Thank you for all the sweet wishes!

  2. Rebecca says:

    I was going to see how it went, but ended up being induced when I was 5 days past my due date and my little guy was having some trouble during our third non-stress test. They broke my water about an hour after they started the pitocin and my doctor recommended getting the epidural before that as she said the contractions would get strong very quickly. I trusted her even though I was very scared about getting the epidural. It went great though. I had very little pain until the very, very end. I think it also helped me get a bit of rest since I ended up being induced at 6:30 at night and had the baby at 3 am. My little guy was totally alert and nursed right away. Honestly, it made my birth experience really positive so I don’t regret it at all. I’ll do it again if we have another!