baby

This new mum's maternity ward request is dividing parents.

A new mum has posted to mumsnet seeking advice about whether it’s normal to have your partner stay overnight on the maternity ward after you’ve had a baby.

“Booked in for ELCS for breech baby,” she began.

“Just going through this week’s post and find a letter from the hospital about what to do/not do prior to the op, what time to arrive etc. At the back is a letter for my “support person”, with a list of do’s and don’ts for their stay on the ward with me after my section.”

It was at this point that the mum, who went under the username Whatthefreakinwhatnow for the purposes of her online inquiry, started to feel uncomfortable.

“Sorry, WTF?!” she wrote.

“I love [my partner] dearly but not a chance do I want him or more importantly a load of other blokes on the ward.”

One woman thinks it's "unreasonable" for partners to stay overnight on the maternity ward. Image via iStock.

"I was already going to discharge myself the following morning but was realistic about staying a bit longer if needed - bollocks to that, I am definitely leaving as soon as my catheter is out and I can walk again!"

The woman was clearly distressed by the idea of having men on the maternity ward just days after she's given birth, and asked the online forum, "am I the only person who thinks this is really bloody unreasonable?!"

In the comments, she clarified that the letter was about overnight stays, from 10pm til 8am.

Unsurprisingly, responses to the new mum's query were mixed.

Some users thought the woman was "lucky" her partner would be allowed to stay. One mum in particular said when she gave birth, her partner had "no time to even bond with baby before [he was] chucked out."

"If you need privacy just draw the curtain round," she suggested. "Just appreciate the fact that you will actually have time straight after the birth to bond which so many couples don't get."

Another woman asked who the mum thought was "going to pass baby to you and back, help you get comfy, pass you a glass of water/nappies/nipple cream every two mins?"

Is childbirth terrifying? Mia, Monique and Jessie discuss on Mamamia Out Loud.

"Cos it sure as hell won’t be midwives. They’re busy," she argued.

ADVERTISEMENT

"I really hope everything goes like a dream for you because otherwise you are in for one hell of a shock.”

But other comments reinforced concerns about having men on the ward.

"I'd consider changing hospitals. Yes, I really would," wrote one mumsnet user. Another agreed that having male strangers in the ward might be off-putting.

"I think it is horrible that ladies who have given birth are expected to be OK with other peoples partners being on the ward 24 hrs per day," she wrote.

One person reasoned that "because they are not patients, they shouldn't be allowed on 24/7."

"Women who've just given birth deserve privacy and dignity, childbirth however you do it is hard enough (especially afterwards) and women should have the right not to have strange men in their personal space."

"I'd consider changing hospitals," suggested one woman. Image via iStock.

She also explained that while her partner "is a very nice man and respects women and wouldn't hurt a fly... how would the woman in the next bed know that, and why should we expect her to just trust that is true?"

Others shared personal horror stories of their own maternity ward experiences.
"The husband of the woman in the bed next to me last time I had a section was a loud, stinky obnoxious git, who bullied his wife and expected her to manage the toddler he brought in as well as the newborn," wrote one woman.
"Thank god he went home at the end of visiting hours and I didn't have to put up with him feet away from me all night."
How do you feel about men staying overnight on the maternity ward?
READ MORE: 

The award-winning podcast Mamamia Out Loud is doing their first live show. There will be laughs, disagreements and you can meet the hosts afterwards! We’re also donating $5 of every ticket price to Share The Dignity so grab your friends and come along to share the love and laughs, get your tickets here.

00:00 / ???