Visitors at Hospital After Giving Birth

Updated on July 29, 2011
E.K. asks from Kalamazoo, MI
29 answers

I am preg now, due in Jan and have a 2 yr old dd. With my daughter I had avery long and hard labor- my water broke at 7 am and I didnt have her till around 3:30 am next morning. By the time we were cleaned up and transfered to the recovery room, it was around 5:30 and a few hours later all the doctors began coming in so I got no sleep. Then my parents showed up without calling or being invited or even knocking and walked in on me half naked. My mother somehow got the phone number to my hospital room ( which the hospital told me they dont give out) and blew up the phone while I was in labor. So then my inlaws showed up and way overstayed their welcome... So Im thinking to tell the hospital this time no visitors. If I end up being there for more than 2 or 3 days I dont mind visitors otherwise I want people to just wait and come to our house. Do I tell thembeforehand or just wait and say sorry Im too tired? Also does anyone know how the hospital handles visitors when the mom has said no?

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Thanks so much for all your support! Im glad to know many people feel the same about wanting privacy and time to recover after giving birth. I will take the advice and just not call my parents this time until Im ready for visitors. Since I think my SIL is babysitting we might not be able to keep the inlaws from finding out, but i guess they will just have to deal :)

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answers from Baton Rouge on

If mom says no visitors, the hospital is obligated to comply. I would warn family ahead of time so that they don't waste the trip and have time to pout and get over it, but not so far ahead of time that they badger you about it for months.

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answers from Norfolk on

We were in a part of the country where we had no family, so there were no visitors for us.
I didn't even call my Mom till after I had delivered - she had no idea I was in labor (plus she was 700 hundred miles away).
If you restrict who gets told when you are on your way to the hospital then no one will know anything is going on until you call them after the fact.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Tampa on

No I seriously did not want visitors and did not have them in the hospital either time. I feel that childbirth is a very private thing. We had warned everyone that we wanted some time to bond as a family prior to having visitors. Apparently my inlaws thought that this applied to everyone but them and were quite offended when we told them otherwise. I was told that I was being unreasonable. They ended relenting and didn't come down until about a week later. Of course they invited several other relatives who brought other relatives. So, 8 days after having my first baby, I have a crapload of people I don't particularly like crowding my house. I kept having to leave the room to breastfeed, I was bleeding like crazy, and I was expected to get drinks etc... for folks. I was super pissed!

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answers from Minneapolis on

I'm with you. My first was born out of state, and it was a hard labor, and I rejoiced that I had no visitors! Then with #2, ALL MY INLAWS came at once... grandpa, grandma, sil, her boyfriend (!?!), plus 3 of my friends and my husband, mom and 20 month old were all there together. It was horrible. I was so uncomfortable in my ugly hospital issue nursing gown, bleeding all over. Yuck.

That said - my husband took care of it for me with #3. He talked to his parents, they brought my boys to meet their sister, stayed 20 minutes and then went home. They also kept the boys until we'd been home one night so I could rest a little in my own bed before becoming a mom to 3. THey totally understood.

I'd make your husband handle his family... you talk to your Mom.

I'd say - one visitor at a time, 20 minutes tops. Make the doctor give you a note if you need to.

I had mine give me one to skip Thanksgiving 5 days after #3 was born... my MIL kind of expected me to go. Um - no thanks.



1 mom found this helpful


answers from Albuquerque on

Put it in your birthplan. The L&D nurses have no problem being the bad guy. I had a 37hour labor and people were making me nuts so I finally told the nurse about halfway in noone and I meant noone but my hubby was to come in until after the kids were born. The nurses made everyone leave and not one more person came in until I was in recovery, and before anyone was allowed in the nurse would check with me first.

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answers from Seattle on

In my experience, if you don't want visitors the nurses will keep them out. My nurses had no problems telling people they needed to leave. I had two "unwelcome" visitors. They weren't necessarily unwelcome, but one set of relatives stayed for THREE hours - I was nearly in tears over worrying about nursing. The nurse asked them to step out, she talked to me about how I felt and I was honest with her. She told me she'd be happy to get rid of them and would blame it all on the hospital and not to worry about a thing. The next day I was waiting on a relative and I was ready to go home!! She kept telling me to wait, wait, wait - she was coming. Ugh... The nurses were awesome about that too.

Anyway, my advice is to tell people in advance because that was SO stressful. The staff was completely awesome, but my goodness. I did not need to be dealing with that. Do yourself a favor - tell everyone in advance that you don't plan on having visitors unless you're staying several days. Have your husband do the work for his side of the family. He can relay to them how you BOTH feel about having visitors.

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answers from Honolulu on

For me:
I, DID NOT WANT, visitors at the hospital, after I had my kids... except for my Husband.
I plainly, told my family/relatives/friends this.
They know me.
I am that way.
I want PRIVACY afterwards.
They had no problems with that. All they said was "just call us when it is okay to come visit..." of course they want to see the baby. That's fine.
They respected my boundaries and preferences.
They do NOT barge in. Uninvited.

I ALSO, told my Doctor and my Nurses that... NO visitors and they put a SIGN on my door.

AND, once I came home with my baby, I left the phone machine on, and NO drop-in's or visitors, at home either. Because, I am too busy and on-demand nursing and do NOT want to, 'entertain.'
People, knew that.
They just left me messages.
I called them back, as I was ready to or had time.

This per me and my Husband. We want, our privacy and OUR time... to have with our baby. By ourselves, and/or with our Eldest child (when I had my 2nd baby).
NO one, had a problem with this.
They respected, my preferences.
AND... my need to rest and not have to entertain.
Visitors.... was all according to my... timing.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

When I was in the hospital having my daughter, my nurse (who was wonderful) told me that if I ever wanted to be alone I should call her in the room and ask for a green popsicle.That would be our safe word and no one else had to know what it meant. That way she was the bad guy and not me. Maybe you can work something like that out with yours.

Good Luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

If I were you, I'd tell them beforehand.
I'm reading some responses below and can't believe some people have "just showed up" while mom was in labor!!! That is so horribly rude!!! My baby is due in a few months. When my labor starts, I'm only telling my parents and my sister, but they would never show up while I was in labor. They might possibly ask to wait in the waiting room, but probably not. As for visitors after the baby is born, my parents, my sister and her family, and my father in law are the only ones I want visiting. They are all very good about staying for just a short time and not wearing out their welcome. I don't think I will call anyone else to even let them know the baby's been born until later.
During my last stay in the hospital when my son was born, I had a couple friends, I call it "power calling" me, on my cell phone and hospital room phone..meaning they just kept on calling over and over and over and over because I wasn't answering. Yes, very immature and yes, I did turn the phones off, and then they started calling the nurses station and bothering them, telling them that they couldn't get a hold of me. I just really did not want to talk. When we eventually talked, one friend even said, "Why didn't you call me when you were in labor?!? I wanted to be in the room when you had the baby." Ummmm, I didn't invite you to be there.
Sorry to go on about my experience...I've just been thinking about it a lot lately. I hope your experience goes well this time. :)

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answers from San Francisco on

We told the hospital NO visitors, no exceptions and that worked well for us. We needed that bonding time ALONE with our baby to make it work for us. I would highly recommend you telling the hospital when you get there, your doctor, have it in your birth plan and tell your family beforehand. Tell them they can visit after the baby is born and when you are settled and comfortable. NO unannounced visitors and your hubby should advocate for you. If anyone shows up, he and the nurses should be shooing people out and tell them they can't come in. GL. Do what is best for you and baby. Your experience before sounds like a nightmare---avoid it at all costs this time!


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answers from Benton Harbor on

If those are your feelings, you need to let your family and friends know ahead of time that they aren't welcome. Don't expect the hospital staff to keep them out.



answers from Detroit on

My thought is to tell whomever is watching your daughter and that's it until you are ready to receive visitors. As for your caregiver, tell them you'll call when it's okay for your daughter to come.



answers from Detroit on

At our hospital, our OB unit is locked, so anyone coming in to visit has to be buzzed in. If a patient requests no visitors, we don't let them in. I often tell patients that it's OK not to tell family that you're coming in to the hospital. Wait until you're ready for them to come see you. Since it's not your first, this time, it might be easier, they won't be quite as anxious as with your first. I would ask your sister-in-law to please not tell the rest of the family, that you were really overwhelmed the last time, and that you'd like some time to bond and rest before you have visitors. Hopefully, she'll honor your request :)

Are you having a c-section? (since you mentioned more than 2 or 3 day stay). You don't have to tell everyone what day you're scheduled.

If family calls the desk, we give out absolutely no information on anyone, including whether they are there or not. However, if they call the main hospital number, the operator usually will connect callers to the patient's room.
Good luck!



answers from Janesville-Beloit on

People get so persistent when babies come, don't they? We were clear with my parents and in-laws that we didn't want anyone to be there during or immediately after the birth (ended up being an emergency c-section anyway). It didn't go over well with my parents at the time, but I just really wanted a few hours at least with just my husband and baby. As it turns out, I wish I would have limited visitors even more for the rest of the hospital stay. People kept calling and wanting to visit, or just stopping by, and I was super hormonal and not wanting anyone to touch my baby (crazy, I know :)) and so all the visits were quite unpleasant for me. I say talk to them ahead of time and just make it about you and what you want, and like you say, they'll have to deal! Best wishes!


answers from Portland on

If it's a decent hospital with a decent staff they will keep visitors out by all means. Tell them beforehand just in case then if you are not in lala land or anything remind them no visitors, except for daughter and husband (if they won't already be there)

Is your family in your business? Like would they know the second you go to the hospital? If they are not down the street and you can go to the hospital without them knowing I would do that. If someone starts blowing up your room phone, tell them not to give it out, but if it happens take the chord out of the back of the phone lol.



answers from Cleveland on

Oh girl, I know EXACTLY how you feel! With our first son I was induced, and it progressed super fast but my nurse didnt seem to care. My contractions came one RIGHT after another for 10 hrs. She refused to check me, I was clutching my bedrail sobbing. And I really am not a whiner. Finally I demanded she check me and I was 7-8 nearly missing the window for pain relief. My son was born w/ the cord wrapped around his neck and not breathing. Thank god he was ok. Then I started vomitting due to the medication. I had asked that ONLY our parents come WHEN WE CALLED. Before I knew it I had both parents and his siblings there....grrrrr. THEN as I was being wheeled into recovery there were all of the young neices and nephews surrounding my wheelchair! REALLY???
With our last son, I made it CLEAR. I don't want to be entertaining the masses after just giving birth! While it's a wonderful and joyful event, most of us our exhausted, emotional, hormonal, AND want to bond with our new babies. NOT see them passed around the room. I told my doctor, and the hospital, and the nurses....NO ONE comes to my room unless it's cleared with me first! Neither of our parents got to see him until he was a few hours old. My hospital offered a new option where as soon as the baby is born and there's no complications he/she is immediately put on your chest skin to skin. No bath, no weighing etc. It was wonderful. It meant that we got no visitors for a few hours and that made it even better!!! Ask if your hospital is supporting that new practice. I forget what it's called exactly but it kept people at bay for a least a few hours. And if you want no visitors until the next day, or until you get home. That is 100% your choice and right!! It may be hard for everyone else who is excited and wants to see the new baby but this is about you and the new baby, no else! Yes tell them before hand so there is no surprises, and hopefully the will accept it!


answers from Orlando on

I had that same problem when I had my first daughter. My then husband and I had already had the conversation that I DID NOT want anyone in my room during labor & for 1 day after the baby was born. Well..when he showed up after work his construction buddies sauntered in with balloons, then he freaked out later & called my mom (who is not a great support system), & the fella she was dating (whom I did not like) all hanging out in my room. I was pretty upset. Not to mention the inlaws coming by & overstaying while Im trying to learn how to breasfeed in private lol. Im remarried & preggers now (due in March) & Ive already told my husband, NO VISITORS!! Do that to me & you die!!! lol I will tell people that when we are ready for visitors we will let them know but I dont really even plan on announcing the birth to anyone local until we are ready for the visitors. Do what you want-its your family. Let them think your selfish if they want to..



answers from Dallas on

With my first baby, I had no idea how exhausted I would be after having a baby. People came and went off and on for the entire time I was in the hospital. I hardly got any rest during the day. With my second baby, I told people that I would call them when I was ready for them to come up. Yes, I did call them and let them know when I was in labor and when the baby was born, but, also not to come up until a set time. I absolutely HAD to get somerest.

When I go visit a friend or family member in the hospital after having a baby, I make a point to stay for no longer than about 15 minutes. I go in to say hello to the mother, father, and of course the baby. I know that sleep with be a distant memory once they get home, and a new mother needs all the rest they can get.



answers from Philadelphia on

Ok we have 3 kids. I loathed the idea of anyone coming in the hospital room with the exception my husband or the medical staff. My bil didnt get married (much older than us until our oldest was 2 yrs) and he never had any kids. So he has no clue on certain things. He used the bathroom in my room. This was a bathroom I had to share with a roommate. He went in ( I was down the hall) I would of told him no use the the bathroom down the hall) the room mate left the trash can very bloody...and disgusting. I was embrassed and also mad at my bil but he really had no clue. My parents and his parents visited with the first two kids at the hospital. The third baby my in laws visited at our house. My mom was not able to visit right away with my third but my dad helped. I didnt want anyhow visiting me...other than my kids and my husband. I was sore and grumpy. With my second and third child I was lucky to have a private room.



answers from Detroit on

Yes, tell them no visitors for at least 48 hours. The hospital will be the guard dog for you! You are in control of this, and I'd tell them when you preregister so that you don't forget until the last minuet. And if you family asks if they can visit, tell them no, you're too exhausted and need some quiet rest time. Have your hubby take lots of pictures to text to them or put on facebook or email. That way they don't feel deprived, but its all on YOUR TIME.

Best wishes!



answers from Detroit on

You should let all your friends and family know you will not be accepting visitors while in the hospital BEFORE you go. Let the hospital know as well. They have to respect your ARE paying the are their customer! There is nothing wrong with wanting some peace and quiet and privacy after giving birth! All the best to you!


answers from Dover on

Well, I think it is perfectly reasonable to tell the hospital that you want your door shut and they should check with you before visitors are allowed in. Additionally, it is ok to say "I am going to try to get some rest now so I don't want any visitors".

It is unusual to expect your parents and your husband's parents not to visit until you come home. Perfectly reasonable to say "I am so glad you came but I need to get some rest"...they are there to visit you and baby but you are not there to entertain them.

I didn't call my parents or inlaws until I was in the hospital and after I was there a bit had my hubby go ahead an call. I had instructed my husband, family, and the staff that when the baby was born I wanted my son to come in and just my son for a little while. Then, they all took turns coming in. Then they went home for the night. Family and friends straggled in the next day and evening and I rested off and on (I am not a napper).


answers from Kansas City on

i would definitely tell them beforehand. if you had the first time maybe you could have avoided all the disruptions. and yes, you can probably tell the hospital no visitors. it's your party. congrats!



answers from Washington DC on

The hospital where I gave birth did maternity hours almost like the ICU. 12-1, 3-4 & 7-8. They did it for exactly this reason.



answers from Cleveland on

when i had my daughter i was induced and no one was there but my boyfriend for the whole thing for the most part (my parents stopped by for an hr or so each while i was having contractions but nothing too serious) and once the major contractions started and they broke my water and i got my epi they left for the night and didnt come by until the next day, and only stopped for a half hr max and my bfs parents stopped by for an hr or so right before vistors werent allowed to be there any more and then left and went home which i was perfectly fine with



answers from Charlotte on




answers from Detroit on

How about you tell YOUR family and hubby tells his? Let hubby know in advance. I agree with you that you should get some rest after a long labor. If it now is long. When my youngest was born, my family didn't visit. Neither did my inlaws, but they're from overseas anyway. When my oldest 2 were born it was vice versa.
I think family will understand.



answers from Grand Rapids on

To answer your question on how the hospital handles it - here in GR when I had my first who we were shocked to find out had special needs - after the first visitor came I just found it too hard to have people in the room. I was grieving. The nurses put a sign on my door for visitors to go to the nurses station and they dealt with them. My room number and phone were kept private. I had to ok anyone I wanted to be allowed in. They did a great job and I found out later they did turn people away for me and didn't even tell me because they didn't want me to be upset.


answers from Dallas on

I don't want my in-laws at the hospital at all. So, we don't tell them when I'm in labor. We call after the baby is born and my hubby will say something like "So, will we be able to see you in a week or so?" to let them know it's not going to be right now.

My family I'm fine seeing, so I let them come. Though, I don't prefer anyone there when I'm having a baby. I did with baby #1 and #2 and by baby #3, I really realized how much I like to be alone with just hubby. I loved it with that birth and the next!

I'm pretty sure the hospital will defend you and keep unwelcome visitors out. I had two of my babies at birth centers, and the midwives refuse to allow anyone to visit unless I say it's okay.

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