Grand and Great Grand Multiparas



Or in other words, you have had lots of babies!

grand multipara is a woman who has already delivered five or more infants who have achieved a gestational age of 24 weeks or more.

great grand multipara has delivered seven or more infants beyond 24 weeks’ gestation.

So when you are having your sixth child (like me), does it get old? Lose its magic?  Become commonplace? My answer is no.  I’m so in love with my little baby and actually enjoying it even more than before.  Maybe that is because I know what to expect by now.  Or maybe it is because having a baby I didn’t think I would have feels like a tremendous blessing. Or maybe it is because I realize that my childbearing years are coming to a close and I ought to just savor what I have while I have it.  I’m not sure but I do know that I am finding so much more joy in this process than I expected.  I do know that I was quite blessed to have great support for the labor, birth and postpartum and that made a difference too.   I’m enjoying the little milestones and mourning their passing at the same time.  She will only be a baby once.

So are there any others out there who have had large families?  What has it been like for you?  Does the process have to lose its magic if you have already done it multiple times? And what is your advice to the first time mom?


5 thoughts on “Grand and Great Grand Multiparas”

  1. My mother had 11 children. With the first 6 births in the ’60 and ’70’s she went with the then-routine sedation or anesthesia. After baby #6 suffered an adverse reaction to the anesthetic, they decided to go natural for #7. My 40-something experienced parents took a Lamaze class together and things went beautifully for the birth. When people asked (as they had after each baby beyond 2), “So, are you done yet?” My mom cheerfully replied, “Why would we stop now? We just learned how to do it!”

    And I’m so glad they kept going–I’m #10!

    1. My husband was the last baby in his family that they were not supposed to have, at least the doctor told his mother not to have more babies. They had a family meeting about it and all of the children wanted another and committed to helping knowing she would be on full bed rest for almost the entire pregnancy. I’m blessed for it. He was #7 and oh so worth it!

  2. I’ve delivered 7 healthy babies and lost 3. Each pregnancy has filled me with such excitement, reverence, and anticipation. It never got “old” or “dull” or “mundane.” We hear all the usual jokes and get the usual stares, but each time we do a family Hokey Pokey or are all trying to squish on the couch to watch a movie, I think about how blessed I am and try to soak in the moment as much as I can.

  3. I’m a Great Grand Multipara. I’ve had 14 pregnancies with 11 live births. My husband delivered several of our babies at home and even got to deliver some in the hospital (we had a very cooperative OB/Gyn!). Each pregnancy was different. No, after this many babies, they don’t just “walk right out”! From my 6th pregnancy onward, I was in hard labor for 2-3 days. It just took longer for my body to get its act together. Thankfully, by that many babies, I had learned good coping skills. I remained on my feet and was very active throughout my labors. I used gravity to work with my body and the movements the baby must go through in order to enter the birth canal. I highly recommend the book ACTIVE BIRTH. It changed my perspective of labor and delivery. I have macrosomias and I have found that delivering on all fours gives about 30% more “exit room” and helps me control a difficult transition period. My uterus is usually very posterior and an all fours position helps with that, too. Also, with macrosomias, there is always an increased risk of shoulder dystocia, when in an all fours position, it is easier for your birth attendant to “corkscrew” the baby out if necessary. My advice to new mothers would be to view labor as an athletic event and prepare for it. Rest, take care of yourself, but try to stay active. Also, what put the baby in can help get the baby out. I have coached quite a few mothers on how to naturally induce labor when their doctors were threatening to use pitocin. It is much safer to the baby and mother! Another excellent resource is HEART AND HANDS. It is written for midwives, but is a great resource for any mother.

  4. I am a great grand multipara. I have had 13 pregnancies, 14 little lives, 8 live births, one stillbirth, and four miscarriages (one was a set of twins). My husband and I still love babies and would gladly take more. All of our children love babies and little children too. What would life be like without babies and little ones? They bring so much joy. More than worth all that we put in. There’s nothing better.

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