My Cloud 9 Horror Story

Posted by Elizabeth Alex on

Cloud 9 is a chain of maternity hospitals in india, and this review story took place at the Kalyaninagar branch in Pune City, June 1st 2020. Tips and observations are from my experience. User discretion advised. No really, discussing negative reviews is very unusual for me but you know what? No woman should experience this.

I hope my little story among others will help pave the way for respectful birthing experience for all mothers in the future, worldwide. Everyone deserves kindness. Please share this story with your loved ones if you find it useful.

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It was only 10days ago⁣ A fighter came into our lives⁣ She fought her way through surgery⁣ We thought that she might die⁣ She fought so hard⁣ Not a whimper not a tear⁣ Tiny lungs filled with water⁣ She fought with tubes running in and out of her⁣ Would she make it or not⁣ We prayed without a clue⁣ Every minute felt like hours ⁣ My hungry princess was without food.⁣ But finally after what seemed like an eternity⁣ My fighter girl made it⁣ God is with me, watching us eternally⁣ ⁣ ⁣ This birthing experience was such a reality check for me! So grateful to God, and to you all who prayed for our safety.⁣ ⁣ 𝐐𝐔𝐄𝐒𝐓𝐈𝐎𝐍:⁣ Did a life event change your perspective on life too? What was it?⁣ ⁣ ⁣ ⁣ PS: This is my original poem as edited by the brilliant artist @nanthagabriel

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My water broke at home, midnight.

Checked at the emergency first. After a flash internal exam the stand-in trainee on duty declared I was lying. She couldn’t “see” anything *rolls eyes* But while she was on the phone with the doctor my water broke again, profusely this time ...all over the floor. “Must be your bladder” she patronises me, again. And thus the nightmare begins.  My gynaecologist suggests I stay under observation and was given an injection and wheeled into the labor room. But not told what these injections were. I figured it must be an antibiotic they usually give after water breaks.

My observation & tip: I wish doctors and nurses in India explain what procedures are been done - if not, please ask, always ask to stay woke! 

In the Labor Room
My husband had to rush home to check on our children. Without him there, I was all alone in a cold dark room. Anxiety set in and my temperature and blood pressure dropped. I couldn’t breathe. I tried telling the nurses but words failed me. I tried again with actions... but nobody helped me. The same trainee came in asking again in the most condescending voice “TELL ME WHAT IS WRONG! HOW can I help you if you can’t tell me” Oh I wanted to say so many things. Praise God who took my voice away.

A nurse figured I couldn’t breathe and got me an oxygen mask. I relaxed, finally and asked this doctor about the injections they gave me in the emergency room. She explained they were to stop/delay labor since I was only 36 weeks and my doctor arrives in the morning. So I asked if these were side effects of those injections, considering I’ve never had any of this before. She didn’t have an answer.

The Surgery
This was my third c-section and it was fantastic! I already knew what to expect. Also very thankful for everyone who prayed for my “speedy delivery” but I did not meet my baby until a day after. My baby was diagnosed with Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS).

All those endless hours being without my baby was excruciating. Like it was missing a part of me, so lost and incomplete...My thoughts wallowed around how I worked 24/7, missing story time, missing painting time, just staying busy and neglectful so maybe God decided to take this baby away. I had been an awful mother and this was my punishment .. on and on it went in my head while I waited in the observation room again. Note, it was over 24hrs since I had a drink of water or any food to eat. The night doctor appears again to check on me; I was so tired, I didn’t respond to her.

Wheeled into my room
The only way to meet my baby was to go to the NICU. So I focused on some leg exercises while in bed and got moving after surgery within 24hrs. I washed my face, refreshed my hair - I was so excited to meet my baby! Besides, with the catheter removed, and a tight tummy Tucker belt I felt like the UnderTaker. With God’s Grace I walked to the other floor determined to see my baby and feed her.. she had been starving too or was she? (Nestle did an unethical study on premature infants and hospitals like mothercare and cloud 9 were part of this study..) 


My Ordeal in the NICU
I took my breast pump with me and insisted on breast feeding my newborn, no formula! So they sent me to a corner with curtains drawn like I was a leper.

“Can I sit here close to my baby and pump?” No.

“Can you bring her to me so I can look at her and pump?” No.

“Can I hold her for skin to skin so it stimulates my breast milk” No.

I was denied simple human rights.

Pumping colostrum was not easy so I started hand-expressing. It was coming out slow and taking longer than expected, naturally. But suddenly I found myself cornered by 4 nurses. All speaking in very loud voices,

“how much tome will it take to pump”

“baby needs feeding NOW”

“why are you doing this, give her formula”

“we need to feed her NOW”

Note we were still in the NICU room, with all the sweet little babies sleeping outside and this yelling was just so appalling! I kept my calm because I knew God was with me. I said in the most stern yet polite way possible - “You are stressing me out and I cannot pump or get any breastmilk under this pressure so leave. All of you leave, now.

Meanwhile I also overheard a nurse yell at the crying baby "WHY ARE YOU CRYING, WHAT DO YOU WANT NOW" and other babies in the NICU were also there. My heart went out to these babies so much.. 

My Observation & Tip: Firstly, I should’ve started pumping on day 1 Breastfeeding within the golden hour. Truly, when you are in despair you can’t focus on solutions. I wish I had and avoided this scene with nightmare nurses! Secondly, looking back while I understand these nurses are under pressure to stay on schedule also, these nurses in particular hired/trained in this hospital have zero empathy. I hope the hospital takes extra measures for Training and developing their teams for a more respectful birthing experience for all. 

I realised haggling with these nurses is not going to cut it so we complained to the doctors. All the doctors about this appalling treatment. My baby was checked again and discharged from NICU the same day. Only then was I finally able to breastfeed her, in peace. Praise God! 

The Suite

Rooms in cloud 9 hospital are designed to look like homes. It’s not a typical hospital aesthetic so I appreciated that. But our homes in India are cleaned daily. There was no toilet paper, no tissue paper, no starter kit for the new mom or baby of sorts, nothing. Granted with my other two deliveries at the Columbia Asia Hospital they gave me a welcome kit. It had supplies and even a hardy baby-blanket. I felt pampered those times. Having just given birth again, I felt a little entitled but can you blame me? I stayed in that room for 3 days and only on the last day, my discharge day, the cleaning lady was sent to clean and mop the room. This, after several requests to clean the floors so this kind of service was disappointing.

Overall? I love the doctors here but not the staff. I did not feel empowered, I did not feel informed. Wish the hospital has strict processes so they don't miss anything. May be pay the staff better so they are Not frustrated to do their jobs as it seems. But more importantly, empathy for new mothers - can you teach anyone that? I would not recommend you or your loved ones go here until they do. 

PS: do not let these people bathe your newborn baby - it's another nightmare, and you just will have to take my word for it.

Thank you for watching & reading!

Need Help? Ask Liz here!


  • I was fortunate to have an amazing midwife for my first and second pregnancies. They were unreal. But I was disappointed after my second with my care at a hospital in the US. They do the heel prick on the baby for screening which they told me no less than five times “it has to be after 24 hours. You must wait 24 hours”. I’m a nurse practitioner but for adults so… you know I’m a good patient and I listen! So the nurse rolls in at 23.5 hours. I called her on it and she’s like no it’s fine. I express hésitation again and she dismisses me. She was there training someone on it. I stopped again “I’m sorry, it’s just that they really stressed to me that it had to be 24 hours. You mean to tell me that 15 minutes isn’t going to make or break”. She looks me in the eye, “it’s fine”.

    Ok. I will back off. They must know. I must be incorrect in what I was told.

    Nope. A week later I get a call from the hospital. Hey we have to re do the test because it was done early. With calm in my voice (but after hitting my hand to the table) I said “I told her it was too soon. I told her in front of my mom and my husband three times that it was too soon and she dismissed me”.

    The hospital administrator was empathetic and livid with the situation. I was so many things. Angry. Ashamed for not fighting back harder. More angry. I ended up putting it all in writing. I’m medical. How could I let it happen?

    And I thought about it. If I am medical and this happened to me, what chance do any of us stand? That doesn’t mean I should get treated differently. No. But if someone like me with some medical knowledge could believe that her ears deceived her, when really she just was being ignored… then what chance does any other woman have?

    Oh and they pricked him twice and were quite barbaric about it. I’m a tough mama. I know my babies need shots and I am there to comfort and remind them how important it is. But this was unnecessary. Terrible. He tested again quickly and thank goodness the results were normal. There was more too, like a blown vein in my hand (when I specifically requested no hand IV), and so on. You are strong for speaking up!!!!

    Mona on

  • This is a nightmare!! I’m so sorry you had such a horrible experience. I am in awe of the internal power you managed to uphold under such circumstances. Wow. Your baby is lucky to have you! I left the labor and delivery unit I worked on as a nurse because the nurses just wanted all the women to lie down and get an epidural so the nurse’s job would be easy. Healthcare systems here have a long way to go too. 😔

    Cory on

  • Liz, thank you for sharing your experience. This is so sad, what a nightmare you went through. My eyes teared up reading your story. I too had similar experience with the staff at a different hospital in Pune. But I’m glad your baby and you are doing good now by God’s grace. Praying for your family 🙏

    Sharon on

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