My Email to Southern Maine Healthcare About My Stay (A Birth Story)

To Whom It May Concern,
  I wanted to leave feedback on my recent birthing experience from June 7th-12th. I hope this finds the right department. The customer cards were too small.


  First of all, I got admitted to Biddeford Hospital for the birth of my daughter on June 7th (A whole month early). She finally made her arrival Wednesday evening. My family and I would like to thank Dr. Lisa Dries D.O. for her professionalism and quick thinking. My daughter's shoulders got stuck and her umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck but Dr. Dries took care of it quick enough that I didn't know about any of it until after it was done.



My husband stayed at the hospital with me until discharge on Sunday. The staff were really nice and willing to give advice and offer assistance with anything we needed. Something that upset us was that during our many visits to the OBGYN for checkups, it was mentioned that we weren't comfortable with taking the baby out of the room. (Seeing how we didn't think we could have children, we are very protective) Not once did an OB tell us that there would be many tests the baby would need to be taken out of the room for. (Car seat challenge, nightly weighs, ear tests, etc..) We felt a little blind sided, but it is what it is.

It was very hard to get any sleep while we were there. The baby had to eat every 2 hours so there wasn't a lot of sleep expected but it seemed like she would eat, and by the time we got everything settled down enough to get a little sleep, a handful of nurses would come in, turn the lights on, and either need to test myself or my daughter, disturbing the peace with their blood samples and blood pressures. Not only that, it seemed like there was some type of loading dock right below the nursery section of the building. Slamming and banging all night long. I blame the lack of sleep from this and the stress of everything on the fact that my milk supply went away while I was there. (It returned when we spent a night in our own home)



There was a couple times they came to prick my daughter's foot for a blood sample, but had to return minutes later to resample because the blood had started clotting. It was very frustrating to see my daughter stressed so often (every two hours they were testing her) and I don't understand why the hospital doesn't have a machine that keeps the blood moving so it doesn't clot.

The food was not very good. Right after I gave birth, they suggested I order something from the kitchen because they were about to close. I ordered a BLT even though I wasn't very hungry, because I hadn't eaten anything since the day before. The BLT that came up was disgusting looking. It did not look fresh, so I didn't eat it. I noticed with the stress of being in a hospital, my milk supply decreased, and lack of sleep made it very hard to have any sort of appetite. It was a struggle every time it came time to order from the menu. There were a few times we ordered off the menu, and the food quality was ok, but then a string of nurses came in, or the lactation consultant came in and because they were really busy, I sacrificed eating to start pumping so they could help me. By the time I was done, my food was cold and my oatmeal was hard.
When we ordered our candlelight couple's meal, my husband and I had ordered the same meal, but with different sides. My meal came up correct, but his sides were wrong. Our rolls were so hard they could have knocked someone out and there was a hair in his carrots. It was enough that we didn't eat that either. We ended up eating Wendy's almost the entire time there. (I know we should have said something while we were there, but because of how irritated we both were from lack of sleep, we thought it was best to just deal with it until we went home)



Housekeeping was very nice and in my room every day to collect the trash and maybe spot wash the floor a couple times but not once was the bathroom sanitized during our stay. Nothing was sanitized in our room either. Being someone who has a germ issue and who runs a cleaning business, with this observation, I couldn't bring myself to use the shower for fear it wasn't sanitized well.

With my milk supply gone, the lactation consultants were very helpful giving advice and information. Each day it was a new consultant, and the information given was also different but I just took from each what worked for me.

When my baby wasn't getting milk from me, and I was upset about nipple confusion, they provided a preemie formula bottle with a tube that connected to my husband's finger and she ate like that. That was Friday. On Sunday, we were discharged and told to come back the following morning to check her Bilirubin. When we arrived the next morning, we were so proud that we got her to eat the amount that she should be eating but when we told the lactation consultant, Janice I believe her name was, she acted like that amount wasn't enough and that we should have never went home with the tube, that should have been thrown away and we should have been given a preemie nipple. I think Janice has good intentions, but we felt like we were in kindergarten with the way she conducted herself. It seemed like she candy coated everything and was trying to be overly nice instead of just being real. As nice as she was, the way she spoke to us made us feel like little children and it frustrated my husband so much he had an anxiety attack on the way home. We are very glad to not have to bring her back there.



When I was pregnant, one of the doctors was really rough while checking to see if I was dilated. It made me scream out in pain and start shaking. As rough as my pregnancy and labor was, I felt like being checked to see if I was dilated was the worst part of everything and that I didn't feel I would want another child just so I didn't have to go through that again. I was terrified of my lady parts and I didn't even want to look there at all.
This made me terrified of my 6 week check up but Dr. Dries recognized my anxiety and quickly assured me that we wouldn't do anything I was uncomfortable with. She was very understanding and patient with me, and I was surprised that nothing hurt when she checked me. I had sworn I wasn't going to have another child but she gave me hope that having another child won't be so bad.

I wanted to share my experience so that I feel heard about all of this, but also because I wanted to recognize how much of an impact Dr. Dries had on me. I have bunches of pregnant friends that are attending different hospitals and I told myself that I would not be going back to Biddeford even though the staff was really nice and helpful, there was just too much that keep piling up, but knowing that Dr. Dries does most of the deliveries actually made me consider going back. I was that impressed by her.

I appreciate you taking the time to read this, I know it's lengthy, and I hope you forward this to the appropriate people as I feel it's important to share the positives and negatives of my experience while I was there.

If you have any questions or want me to follow up with anything, you can email me at Samantha@ShinebyDesignCleaning or call me at ***-****. Email is usually better, but either way.

I hope you have a great day,
Samantha Wilcox





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