Reader Question | How I Handled Labor Pain

This is a common question among women considering natural childbirth.

Carla posted a comment on the natural childbirth videoHer actual question was “Can you tell me how you psyched yourself through the pain?”

my labor This is a hard question because everyone has a different definition of pain, and a different tolerance for pain. I’ll speak from my own experience and hope to hear comments from you on how you psyched yourself through the pain.

I must say that as prepared as I thought I was for my natural childbirth, I have learned so much more since writing for this site. I’ve loved diving into all things childbirth.


One of the best things I ever did was read all I could about labor and what to expect. My husband and I took an abbreviated Bradley Childbirth Class and I highlighted and dog-eared the Dr. Sears Birth Book.


Your mind is the best tool to get you through the pains of childbirth :-)  ‘

  • be prepared
  • know all of your options
  • try to labor at home as long as you can
  • know the stages of labor
  • watch videos of labor
  • know that there will be an end to the contractions and think about what’s on the other end!

My labor came on slowly, actually a few days before my regular contractions I was having episodes of labor. That was a great start for me to get an idea of what was about to come. When they finally did start regularly, they started pretty hard and it only got more intense as it went on. I laughed because between contractions I was totally fine. I remember hubby watching football, (which I hate)and after I was breathing and going through a really tough contraction, I sat up and said “hand me the remote”. They came and went with a vengeance.

When they first started, I didn’t know how to handle it, I tried remembering to not fight it, to try to relax, to let my body do what it knows to do.

I could feel each one coming on with a bit of a tightening around the lower part of my belly, then moving to encompass the whole belly, it feel like a really strong tightening from my belly button to my back. Almost like a really bad gas pain, really crampy gas pain.

When they first started, I didn’t know how to handle it, I tried remembering to not fight it, to try and relax, to let my body do what it knows to do. To breathe through it. And actually when I was really focused, and really set my mind to it, those contractions weren’t as bad as the ones I was fighting. I was almost testing my contractions. Did it hurt more when I relaxed and breathed? Did it hurt more when I moaned? Did it hurt more when I was on all fours? Did it hurt more when I was on my side? Did it hurt more when I was standing? I tried all positions and all breathing.

What worked best for me was getting into the shower, the water hitting my tummy and back relaxed me the most, it was like a distraction I think.

Also, walking helped the pain also, while walking I would stop and hang my arms around my husband and rocking back and forth would help.


If you have a normal labor, you’ll be sure to get lots of testing like I did, of what works best for you. Have a great support system in place, your partner, a doula, or both!

I have learned so many things since my birth, here is a video of one amazing technique!


These posts will help you also:
Labor Pain
And this site too

Online Childbirth Classes


  1. I just experienced natural childbirth this past August and completely agree with your list! One thing I wish I would’ve know was that most women experience a really big contraction when they switch positions. I labored at home for hours without calling my doula (because I was three weeks early and thought it was false labor and didn’t want to “bother” my doula). Every time I went to lie down I’d get a HUGE contraction and pop back up. I would’ve saved myself hours of pacing around the dining room table if I just wouldn’t known that once thing. Oh and if I would’ve been SMART and called my doula sooner :) Great list and I’m excited to follow your blog now that I’ve found you!

    • Sorry for the typos – guess I was a little too excited to post a comment after reading such great tips :)


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