On Home Birth in a Small Apartment

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As I prepare for the birth of my second child and during this month of surveying small space living here at Apartment Therapy, I have been reflecting on where I would be giving birth if I still lived in NYC. Home births are on the rise in New York state, up 71% since 2004. With most of the state's population living in the city, I find myself imagining the logistics of home birth in my old apartment:

  • Would I feel inhibited laboring in close proximity to my neighbors?
  • Would I approach the coop board during the planning stages of a home birth? In the case of the coop where I lived, I can only imagine that the board would have made a home birth difficult if not impossible.
  • Would there have been room for a birthing tub and attendants in our little 400sf apartment?
  • If I needed to get some fresh air during labor, would I go for a walk in our busy neighborhood, pausing at contractions? Or would I have confined myself to the interior of our apartment?
  • Where would I have gone in the case of a hospital transfer? And how would we get there?

I can only imagine the logistics at this point as I moved from the city years ago, but I do find myself thinking of the years I lived in my much-loved little apartment and how it would translate if I were still there at this current stage of my life.

Do any readers have experience with a home birth in a small apartment? What can you share about the experience as it relates to small space living?

Here is an article from last year about the rise of home births in New York, which touches briefly on a few of the details of giving birth in a small apartment:

(Image credits: reader Emily)

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Main, Family, Baby, Parenting, Small Spaces

Regina is an architect who lives with her husband and children in Lawrence, KS. As a LEED Accredited Professional and longtime contributor to Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn, her focus is on healthy, sustainable living through design.

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