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Screaming Birth

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"Okay, maybe we can take it down just a little. I think you're gonna scare the other pregnant women."

New Age Midwife: Oh, I want Daphne to be awake and connected to the moment. A natural childbirth needn't be painful.
Roz: It needn't be, but it be.

When a character is pregnant in a series, especially a sitcom, there will be the inevitable Screaming Birth.

Commonly, TV birth happens mere minutes after the water breaks, precipitating a mad rush (in a taxi) to the hospital, frantic calls to the doctor, and apoplexy (or better yet, a nice dramatic swoon) by the father-to-be. And for some reason, nobody ever decides to take an epidural. As seen in the above quote, the modern workaround for this is having the woman opt for a "natural," drug-free birth, often under the belief that giving birth is a natural part of being a woman she wants to fully experience. This line of logic usually only lasts until the first contraction hits.

The rest of the episode is spent with the pregnant character lying flat on her back (the hardest conventional position in which to give birth, but the easiest for doctors and cameras), in pain, sweating, crying, cursing out her husband/boyfriend/babydaddy ("You did this to me! You're never touching me again, you bastard!"), or screaming his name if he's not there, and in many cases, often suddenly developing near superhuman grip strength, being able to suddenly shatter every bone in the hand of any poor sap who to tells her to squeeze their hand to help with the pain. Often she will have the lower part of her body inside some sort of tent, with the attending medics having to duck inside. Eventually, she's able to push a kid out of her birth canal with all attendant drama — don't be surprised, though, if the writers throw in one last twist, such as Surprise Twins! This ends with a damp but otherwise perfectly clean (three-month old) baby being held by an exhausted but beatifically smiling mother and an ecstatic father or father figure. Just don't expect to see the delivery of the afterbirth, or the stitching-up of any perineal tears, either of which would no doubt spoil the mood. You will occasionally see the cutting of the umbilical cord by the nervous father, always obscured from direct sight and often Played for Laughs. Expect the next shot of the mother to have her fully clothed beneath the waist. She must have given birth right through her pants.

The chances are good that the mother will be unable to make it to the hospital and will deliver anywhere she might find herself (note: Never take the elevator if you will be riding with a pregnant woman or are near-term yourself). Can be combined with Locked in a Freezer, where the pregnant woman is the "danger" and the other characters have to help her give birth.

Since the 1970s, this is usually preceded by a Lamaze Class earlier in the season.

In Real Life, Screaming Births can be Truth in Television, especially when there are complications, but it's often a self-fulfilling prophecy if a woman tenses up in anticipation. In any event, it generally isn't the birth, which is almost always the shortest part of the process, that is painful, and is done without medication at any rate. The painful part is the labor that precedes it, which can last anywhere from two hours to three days.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Played for drama in Berserk when Casca goes into labor in front of Guts and undergoes a miscarriage. Though the baby is underdeveloped and mutated, thus it SURVIVES, she's still going through all the bouts of labor pain and "silently" screams when the fetus comes out. All other examples within Berserk are horrifically justified, as many pregnant women are impregnated with demon spawn and aren't as lucky as Casca to have a somewhat safe vaginal birth...
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, when Ed and Al have to witness a woman giving birth, they do what most teenage boys would do in that situation: panic. Except for Winry, who, despite being a mechanical genius, knows what to do from her parents' books and coaches everyone into doing what needs to be done. And it gets done to the degree that the doctor who comes in later compliments her on a job well done. Mostly averted though, since the birth takes quite a long time and involves a great deal of blood. FMA's mangaka grew up on a farm and birthed many a livestock in her time, so she knows from experience.
  • A very justified example in Gosick, where the mother, Cordelia Gallo, was chained to a freezing-cold altar, flat on her back, with no visible assistance whilst a bunch of amateur mystics (including the rapist who'd given her the child in the first place) were performing a sinister ceremony on and around her. Frankly, it's a miracle that she and the child, Victorique, survived, and it's one of the most disturbing scenes in the show. Not to mention that the mother who gave birth has a quite petite body, so, yeah, it's quite an obstetrician's nightmare.
  • In the Distant Finale for HuGtto! Pretty Cure, Hana giving birth to Hugtan (aka Hagumi) is depicted as this, with Hana screaming almost all the way through.
  • In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind, Doppio's/Diavolo's mother is seen and heard screaming inside her prison cell as she's about to give birth. The wardens are baffled when they realize she's pregnant since they're in a women's-only prison and she's been imprisoned for two years already.
  • Naruto: Naruto's birth, when a flashback is shown of his mother, Kushina Uzumaki, having him. Her exact words are "OH GOD, IT HUUUURRRRRTS!" Justified in that said baby had a gestation period of 10 months instead of the usual 9, plus there was the whole Kyuubi thing (Kushina was its Host at that moment) which would offer complications.
  • Tony's birth in Toward the Terra. With the added bonus of telepathy meaning that it was not only the mother who was in screaming pain but everyone else in the area as well.
  • Vandread The Second Stage uses this, coupled with a trapped in an elevator moment, right when the enemy attacks Nirvana and the systems are crippled with a virus. Hibiki must assist Ezra in delivering, the girls must manage without any VanDread backup, and Ezra could only get (remote) assistance from Duelo who's a doctor, but inexperienced with female physiology, and Magno's experience.
    • In the long run, both Hibiki and Duelo lose it during the birth, but Dita and Magno manage to keep it together and deliver the baby.

    Comic Books 
  • The second Atari Force series has the backwater planet creature scream as it gives birth to the Dark Destroyer's humanoid form.
  • The author of the series ElfQuest, Wendy Pini, made a very deliberate aversion to the screaming birth scenario at the end of the first major arc. True, it happens during a moment of great significance, but the mother is sitting up halfway, supported by her husband, and their two little children (roughly 3 and 5) stand by watching. It's a joyous event, and there is sweat and strain but no screaming or negative emotions. The midwife takes the little baby, cord still attached, and lays him on the mother's stomach, and the whole family cuddles up together.
    • Not quite as joyous, but much later when Kahvi gives birth, she's squatting over an animal skin, holding onto bars, sweating and straining, while a tribesmate plays a flute. Again, no screaming or negative emotions. This is the general case with every shown birth to date. Also quite a breath of fresh air, to treat it as a joyous and natural occasion with the mother-to-be as agent instead of patient.
    • Anyway, the fact that elves have a two-year gestation period means they have plenty of time to prepare...
    • One of the later storylines showed Skywise's mother resisting the process of labor, as she's been captured by humans and fears they'd kill or abandon her baby if she gives birth. Suppressing her contractions is apparently far more painful than yielding to them in the end.
  • Fully justified times six in Fables when Snow White is in labor with her and Bigby's kids.
    Snow White: Oh God! Oh God! Oh God! Put a gun to my head and shoot me now! I'll die this time, I promise....Please, please, please just make them stop coming out of me! I'll do anything! I'll give you the key to any one of Bluebeard's treasure rooms! Your choice!
  • Partially subverted in the comic Gold Digger where weres like the main character Brittany Diggers suffer no labor pains whatsoever due to the lycanthropic enchantment. Then played straight when it turned out Brittany's enchantments weren't entirely intact, causing her labor to be much much worse than a normal human's... until the werewolf midwife Jetta came up with the impromptu solution of biting the expectant mother, sharing Jetta's own enchantments and causing things to go back to the wereperson norm of no pains whatsoever.
  • Fully invoked in The Pulse. Jessica Jones screams so loud that the reporters gathered outside Dr. Strange's house can hear her.
  • Inverted with the opening scene of Saga, in which Alana is giving birth to her daughter Hazel; she's collected enough that she's able to crack wise and seems to be more distressed by the idea that she might be shitting in front of her husband than she is at any pain. When she does cry out, Marco asks her if she wants any pain relief; she says that she's not in pain and that it actually feels good to her, wondering whether it's "sick for it to feel this good."
  • Les Tuniques Bleues: A Union detachment runs into refugees, one of which goes into labor. The Confederates hear the screams and assume the Northerners are torturing women. They charge but are quickly hushed by the rest of the soldiers (Chesterfield being the unfortunate man roped into helping), and they all agree to a ceasefire so they can get into position to kill each other. Once that happens, they sheepishly agree that they all just want to leave, and do so.
  • In Zero Hour: Crisis in Time!, Power Girl screams as she is giving birth to her child, which Wonder Woman acts as the midwife of.

    Comic Strips 
  • Zig-zagged in Baby Blues: when giving birth to Hammie, Wanda did a lot of screaming and hitting Darryl (to the point where he had to wear a catcher's mask) while in labor, but ultimately didn't scream during the delivery. She did scream while giving birth to their third child, Wren...which morphed into a triumphant "I KNEW IT!" when the doctor announced that it was a girl.

    Fan Works 
  • Played for Drama in the first version of Acts of Treason. The aged-up Myrcella has a difficult first birth after marrying Robb Stark—she's in labor for a long time since the baby was either breech or got stuck, and she ends up with some form of PTSD due to having nightmares about dying in childbirth.
  • Sandstorm yowls while kitting in Bitter Repercussions.
  • Zelda undergoes one in chapter 40 of Blood and Spirit. She even reflects in the narration that getting mortally slashed across the chest by a Majora-possessed Link was nothing compared to the pain of childbirth.
  • The Frozen one-shot Call the Midwife revolves around Anna having this sort of birth while her husband Kristoff is stuck in the middle of a blizzard.
  • Child of the Storm mentions that Lily Potter had one of these, with the full battery of screaming and violent threats to her husband of the exact details of what would happen if he ever touched her again. Pepper, by contrast, has a much easier birth.
  • Justified in Coby's Choice, as Nami gives birth to her and Luffy's son, Ace, far away from any form of proper medical facilities and with only a single nurse to act as a midwife.
  • Frollo has one in Delivered From Frollo. It's so bad, he's almost breaking the chains holding him in place.
  • In the Discworld of A.A. Pessimal, Fiery Redhead Johanna Smith-Rhodes spends most of the delivery of her firstborn screaming dire threats at her husband, who is of course in the traditional waiting room being buoyed up by sympathetic fellow fathers. All is forgiven, if not forgotten, once the child is born...
  • The Mistress actually goes through this in Chapter 13 of the Superjail! fanfic Extended Stay while delivering mixed-gender twins.
  • Happens a lot in Fire Emblem: Awakening's Chrom/Female!Avatar fanworks dealing with the birth of Lucina, usually with Chrom banned from the birthing room and left to pace and fret while the female Avatar screams and suffers until the happy parents are cradling their new baby in their arms.
  • The Golds: Isabelle's birth is not portrayed as a "quiet affair".
  • In the Soul Eater / Naruto crossover He'll Never Be My Son, it's implied that Medusa had one of these with Crona. The actual birth isn't shown (it skips from her telling Orochimaru, the father, that she's pregnant to twenty minutes after the birth), but it's mentioned that she smacked Kabuto in the face with a heavy book and gripped Orochimaru's hands so hard it left large bruises.
  • Played straight with Hero's two wives, Wonder and Smurfette, in the births of his two daughters in Hero: The Guardian Smurf. In fact, Hero's first wife grabs him by the neck and nearly strangles him as she yells at him during the delivery.
  • JLA Watchtower/DC Nation universe: Ralph Dibny is busy battling Sonar, leaving Flash and Hal Jordan to take Sue (who is in labor) up to the Watchtower. Mid-Nite is in surgery, and can't be paged, leaving the Dibnys' kid to be delivered by Flash, Hal, Martian Manhunter, and ''Eel O'Brien!''. For extra fun, get a Yiddish dictionary, since Nationverse-Sue is very fluent in Yiddish swearing.
    Sue: Can you schmendricks get me to a god DAMNED doctor?!
    Plastic Man:Whoaaa, Sue Dibs, baby, this is NOT how I ever wanted to peek up your skirt!
    Martian Manhunter: Hal. Your ring. It can give you medical information and instructions, correct?
    Plastic Man: Sorry, but your ass is in the general vicinity of some major ju-ju that I REALLY don't want to get close to right now! Ask me again later!
    Hal Yes, but I...Damn. Damn. Just... damn. Ring, please bring up information on human reproduction... err... the delivery of human children. And begin providing pain-relief to Sue immediately.
    Flash Should I be boiling water? You're supposed to boil water - or is that for the flu? Uh... do we have paper towels?
  • In Joys of the Parenthood - The Țepeș Edition, Lisa spends the majority of her labor screaming Freudian Threats at her husband.
  • Somewhat subverted and portrayed more seriously than most examples in Chapter 20 of Lucky Star: After Story. Despite being in labor, Konata manages to stay calm throughout most of the ordeal, even if she did end up crying at one point. Also, she did occasionally scream from the pain.
  • The Mountain and the Wolf: Two screams for the price of one: When Cersei is giving birth, the Wolf makes Jaime stand next to her and tells her to grab his arm. When she starts screaming, so does he.
  • Jenna has one of these combined with Instant Birth: Just Add Labor! in My Inner Life, panting and screaming the second her water breaks, squeezing Link's hand, and shouting "You did this to me! Damn you, Link!" Of course she instantly calms down midway through the birth (during some faux-drama) and after the baby comes out.
  • Pops up as a quick gag during Families from the The Nuptialverse. According to Pinkie, Mrs. Cake was like this when birthing the twins. Aside from screaming "these funny words to Mr. Cake that [Pinkie's] not allowed to repeat", she also apparently grabbed a scalpel and used it on Mr. Cake and Nurse Redheart.
  • In the Pony POV Series, Discord's mother Entropy does not have a pleasant time birthing her children (due to being the opposite of life and thus the act of creating is even more painful for her), to the point the universe quakes from it. Afterwards, she erases her mate Havoc from existence (he wills himself back into it seconds later) for saying they might have to try again.
  • Played for Drama in Safe Anchorage where Jeyne screams hard enough to injure her throat when giving birth since the pain makes her flashback to her rape.
  • In Time Fixers: Nicktoons of the Future, Cindy's screams echo through the woods as she gives birth to Max at the campsite while Jimmy and the Nicktoons are trying to rescue Junior from the SpongeCog robots.
  • Us and Them: When Aeris was born, Ifalna was screaming. And swearing. And Gast taped the whole thing.
  • Played for Laughs in Welcoming Chiho; the initial labour is portrayed exclusively through Rosemary and Hitomu's panicked screams to each other, neither one having any idea what the hell they're supposed to do. Luckily, once the doctor arrives, their daughter Chiho is born without complication, but according to the nurse, she had never seen quite a theatrical delivery before.
  • The My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fanfic Windfall revolves around the Elements of Harmony reuniting for the birth of Fluttershy and Big Macintosh's first foal. After several hours in labor, the normally quiet and demure Fluttershy is heard screaming her head off at Big Macintosh and trying to strangle him. Granny Smith nods sagely and remarks that Macintosh is getting off easy compared to her husband at the birth of her first child.

    Films — Animation 
  • In The Rugrats Movie, Didi screams just before giving birth to Dil, and for some reason, the camera goes into her mouth, shows a strange montage of the history of the universe, and comes out of her alongside Dil opening his eyes for the first time.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • There's a very intense birth-giving scene at the end of Altman's 3 Women. It turns out to be a stillbirth.
  • Aniara: Isagel is shown loudly screaming when she delivers her son.
  • In Away We Go, a friend of Burt and Veronica's mentions that when she gave birth to one of her kids, there was screaming. Because she "...had the biggest orgasm in my life".
  • In the opening of Batman Returns, The Penguin is born from one of these. And when his parents finally see him for the first time, even the father screams.
  • In Blankman, Blankman and Kevin find a woman in labor while trapped in a broken elevator. Kevin tells her to hold his hand, and she blindly grabs his crotch. As the Delivery Guy, Blankman is quite nervous. All three end up screaming at once, two from pain and one from panic.
  • In Children of Men, Kee gives us lots of painful screams well before and during the delivery. Given that no one on Earth has had a child in years, presumably she's more tense than a woman in her position would normally be.
  • Parodied in The Movie of Coneheads, where the alien Connie's birth is accompanied by oceans of fluid, truly epic mugging from her mother Prymaat, glass-shattering howls, and literally crushing her husband's hand as she shouts "I hate you, Beldar! I hate yoooou!" And then Beldar, when asked by the obstetrician if he would like to cut the umbilical cord (and being offered a pair of scissors to do so), leans in and bites clean through it. Cue the obstetrician's humourous fainting.
  • Played for Horror in the opening scene of Dead Night. Quite justified, considering the supernatural nature of the fetus.
  • In the film of Vilhelm Moberg's The Emigrants tetralogy, Kristina's sixth childbirth is shown on-screen, and it's a screaming one.
  • The Lifetime Movie of the Week Fifteen & Pregnant employs this, sans the girl screaming at the baby's father (her own father chases the guy and his new girlfriend away).
  • In Five, Roseanne goes into labor after being knocked to the floor in the fight between Eric and Charles. She gives birth to a boy—delivered by Michael—accompanied by loud screams.
  • In The Fly (1986), Veronica has a gruesome nightmare where she starts screaming not because she's in pain, but because she can see what she has just given birth to - a three-foot-long, blood-coated and still writhing maggot.
  • In his concert film, Himself, Bill Cosby described the birth of his first child:
    "At the next contraction, my wife told everyone in the delivery room that my parents were never married!"
  • Holocaust 2000: Sara gives birth to her and Robert's child while screaming, an event for which Robert himself is absent because he's convinced that his newborn is The Antichrist and tried to have it aborted against Sara's will before.
  • Hostile: In a Flashback to her pre-apocalypse life, Juliette is seen letting out a scream as she gives birth to her and Jack's kid.
  • Sandy giving birth to alien twins in Inseminoid. As the pregnancy has brainwashed her into a violent and feral state, her screams are animalistic and bone-chilling to the point one was used for the jumpscare sound effect in the first Five Nights At Freddys game.
  • In Jersey Girl, Jennifer Lopez's character screams her head off during labor, and then immediately passes out and dies from some sort of brain trauma.
  • The comedy movie Knocked Up uses this trope after the woman has been given medicine to speed labor — probably Pitocin, which makes the whole process more painful. She was opposed to being given this medicine and it was implied the labor may be in trouble, so she has reason to scream.
  • Kommissar is about a commissar during the Russian Civil War who is forced to leave her Red Army unit and board with a peasant family when she becomes pregnant. Beyond all the screaming, and calls to the midwife to stop torturing her, Klavdia passes out and has a Dream Sequence about the fellow cavalryman who knocked her up.
  • Left for Dead: Michelle undergoes a screaming birth while trapped in the Ghost Town of Amnesty. Blake attempts to leave Clem to deal with the delivery, claiming that women are more used to this sort of thing. Clem forces him to deliver the baby because a) he's the father, and b) Michelle's screams are likely to attract the Big Bad and he is in no condition to defend them but she is.
  • Man of Steel opens with Kal-El's birth, with his mother Lara in clear teeth-grinding agony. Justified in this case, as up until this point, all Kryptonians were Designer Babies artificially conceived and gestated in Uterine Replicators, making Kal the first Kryptonian to be conceived and birthed naturally in several centuries, so they probably lost all knowledge on things like epidurals and Lamaze classes.
  • Played straight to horrible squick-inducing levels in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Victor's mother dies after a horribly bloody birth and Victor collects amniotic fluid from a woman who, despite the fact that her water is just breaking, screams like the baby is coming out sideways.
  • In Men in Black, an alien woman gives birth in the back of a taxi, and Will Smith's character is instructed to "Just catch." As the infant is born, huge tentacles emerge from the window of the vehicle and hoist him into the air.
  • In On the Buses, Olive hollers in pain as she is lifted into St. Luke's Maternity Hospital while in labour.
  • In the movie, Precious, the title character uses this when she goes into labor at school. The scene cuts to her being on a stretcher and she is screaming in pain. Lenny Kravitz, who is a nurse, comes to Precious' stretcher and tells her to stop screaming. She does for two seconds and then goes right back to screaming.
  • Prince Caspian starts with a dramatic camera close-up on Lord Miraz's wife Prunaprisma, performing this trope with a disturbingly accurate cry as she gives birth to a son.
  • Played for more drama than usual in A Quiet Place when Evelyn has to avoid making any sound while in labor because one of the alien monsters is prowling about the house. When her son sets off a firework rocket to draw the monster away, she takes the opportunity to scream her head off. That's only the start of the problem of course, because they then have to worry about the crying baby drawing the monster back there.
  • Happens at the end of the obscure 1988 Irish film Reefer and the Model. What happens afterwards is up to the viewer to decide.
  • Relative Fear: Adam's mother spends almost the entire opening scene screaming nonstop, in contrast to Linda's more peaceful birth. Most of this is rage at the fact that her baby is going to be taken away, but at least some of it seems to be actual pain.
  • The mother in The Road is screaming her lungs out.
  • Justified in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Fanny, Little John's wife, is having birthing complications delivering her eighth child. Complications, according to Azeem, that could potentially kill her and the baby both if not addressed.
  • In A Royal Affair, Caroline has one when she gives birth to her first child. When the physician tells her that a "true queen gives birth in dignified silence", it just prompts her to scream louder.
  • She Hate Me: All of the women Jack impregnated shown giving birth scream while doing so.
  • Shoot 'Em Up. Justified when you've got a shootout taking place all around you, including hot cartridge cases dropping onto your belly. It doesn't help when the man helping with the delivery elects to cut the umbilical cord with a point-blank gunshot.
  • Used at the start of Star Trek (2009). Granted, the woman is allowed to sit up somewhat while she gives birth, and as the birth is taking place in the middle of an attack and evacuation (with her husband still on-board the ship), she has several perfectly good reasons to scream. The novelization also establishes that Kirk was not born that way in the original timeline, that the altered timeline with the stress brought on by Nero's attack and George Kirk's Heroic Sacrifice forced Winona into premature labor.
  • Strange Nature: Jodie lets out quite a few screams while giving birth to Danielle.
  • The beginning of Taxi 2 has Daniel drive a pregnant woman and her husband to a hospital. He doesn't arrive in time, so the birth has to take place in his taxi — just when his girlfriend Lilly calls him on the cellphone. Lilly mistakes the moaning and screaming woman in Daniel's presence for an entirely different situation, what the woman says does anything but convince her otherwise, and even the husband's words when Daniel hands him the phone suggest that Daniel is having a ménage à trois.
  • Vampire Diary: Vicki undergoes a screaming birth accompanied by quite a lot of blood. Of course, the birth might not be entirely natural. Neither Holly nor Adam are exactly equipped to help someone giving birth either.
  • In Warcraft (2016), Draka screams in pain as she gives birth. She's gone into labor while crossing the Portal, which causes complications.
  • The 1970 version of Wuthering Heights portrays Cathy's delivery of her baby this way. Probably justified, as she was already sick and emotionally overwrought, and she doesn't survive the birth.

  • Angela and Diabola opens with the birth of the titular twins, who are respectively pure good and pure evil. Angela's birth is easy, painless, and blissful for their mother, bur Diabola's birth causes screams of pain.
  • Apparently these were common in novels from the twenties, soon after it became possible to talk about childbirth at all; Flora in Cold Comfort Farm is surprised when someone gives birth easily and reflects that it is not at all like the books she has read. (Inexact quote: "These days, she skimmed through new novels, and if her eye lighted on words like "screaming" or "sweat-dewed brow" or "clutching the bedpost", she put the book firmly back on the shelf".)
    • Somewhat lampshaded with Meriam in the same work. Flora hears the girl screaming and comes to help, only to find that Meriam actually gave birth with little trouble the day before; she just felt that no one had paid her enough attention the first time.
  • In Homeland from The Dark Elf Trilogy, the first of the books in The Legend of Drizzt series, Drizzt Do'Urden is born during the middle of House Do'Urden's attack on House DeVir. Not only is Matron Malice Do'Urden in pain, but she and the house wizards manage to channel her intense pain into a spell that kills the Matron Mother and clerics of the house they're attacking.
  • In Clan Of The Cave Bear from the Earth's Children series, Ayla's long, screaming, bloody delivery of Durc frightened the rest of the Clan, and left her weak and near death for days afterward. More justified than many examples in that she's eleven years old and a Cro-Magnon giving birth to a Neanderthal father's child, a situation which usually results in Death by Childbirth for the mother, and no other character in the series has this.
  • The Empirium Trilogy: Furyborn opens with Queen Rielle screaming while giving birth to Eliana.
  • A particularly ludicrous example comes from Stephen Baxter's Evolution, where a woman goes through a Screaming Birth... and then is able to calmly discuss what her newborn's actions mean in terms of evolutionary heritage a moment later. Then again, the book was written by a man.
  • 15 year old Diana Ladris has one in Fear from the Gone series. In a pitch-black, scorching hot mine with two psychopaths who torture her relentlessly, no less. Played for drama.
  • Melanie Wilkes in Gone with the Wind gives birth like this, but it's because her body shape is unfit for it. Scarlett gives birth easily, with almost no pain, at least with her first child.
    • As stated by Ellen, Scarlett's own mother, a proper lady was expected to keep as silent as possible during childbirth - so as to not disturb the men. Probably not Truth in Television for the time period since the men would have been nowhere nearby in real life, but still utterly ludicrous. Melanie breaking this social rule shows just how difficult her labor is. Scarlett encouraging her to scream and yell as much and as loudly as she wants to is a sign that she cares more for Melly than she's willing to admit to herself.
  • In The Kingdom of Little Wounds, Isabel screams to pretend she is in labor after she has already given birth. Further played with in that she didn't scream when she was in labor.
  • In the Left Behind book Apollyon, Hattie Durham has a screaming birth as she delivers a stillborn child that requires a doctor and nurse to deliver due to complications.
  • In Lindsey Davis' Time to Depart from the Marcus Didius Falco novels, Helena Justina screams, cries, insults her husband, threatens divorce, and then breaks his hand. To be fair, this was in the Roman empire, with the lack of sophisticated midwifery that implies, and he was dousing her with olive oil at the time. (And most of the dramatic details are drawn from Falco's subsequent snarky letter to his best friend, so he may have exaggerated.)
  • In the prologue of Mermaid Moon, Lisabet rushes to the seashore to give birth to Half-Human Hybrid Sanna. She tries hard not to make a sound so the townspeople won't find out she's having a merman's child, but when labor begins in earnest, she can't hold back her screams anymore.
  • In the historical novel Red Plenty by Francis Spufford, a pregnant woman in the Soviet Union circa 1960 is shocked to hear the sound of screaming from another ward and is relieved to find she isn't taken there... at first. She even reprimands another woman for using foul language during her contractions—and ends up swearing like a sailor herself. Hospitals use psychoprophylaxis (a Soviet-invented predecessor of Lamaze) but the inept Soviet bureaucracy ensures that women and nurses are not properly instructed in the method; the woman ends up threatening the nurse with her influential husband to get hold of drugs to kill the pain (which is regarded as a capitalist delusion).
  • The Red Tent:
    • This happens to Rachel as she gives birth to Joseph. Her screams actually scare away Jacob, who was pacing around outside the birthing tent. Justified Trope, as it was a difficult birth that almost killed her.
    • It also happens to a few other characters, including The Protagonist. Some survive... and some do not.
  • The Silerian Trilogy: Elelar has one. Justified since it was a supernatural event that involved lava flowing out of her womb. Ouch.
  • Sisterland: The epidural the twins' mother receives only numbs half her body, causing her to be partially paralyzed and in excruciating pain during the birth and leaving her traumatized.
  • Survivor Dogs: Sweet made a lot of noise while giving birth to her puppies.
  • A Swiftly Tilting Planet: Subverted. A Magical Native American is depicted as giving birth in complete silence, but the white townspeople expect women to scream during labor. Said townspeople happen to be Puritans at the height of the American witchcraft scare, so it's treated by the townspeople as a sign of devilry.
  • The Twilight Saga takes this one further as Bella's delivery of Renesmee is not just a screaming birth, but a spine-snapping, blood-vomiting nearly lethal birth. Granted Nessie WAS half-vampire and Bella was not...
  • In Warrior Cats, while there isn't actually any screaming involved, the she-cats will be given a stick to bite down on when the pain comes. Said stick usually snaps at the end.
  • Inverted in Wicked. While in labor with Elphaba, Melena is given leaves to make her pass out. She mentally curses her husband for being the reason she's in so much pain before promptly fainting. Melena doesn't wake up until after her daughter is born.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Parodied in an episode of the UK sitcom Absolutely Fabulous, where there are separate "flashbacks" depicting the births of the two protagonists. Edwina's mother gives birth in a relentlessly "1950s" hospital setting, perfectly made-up and almost completely engulfed in white bedding; the only noise she makes is an almost subliminal "ooh!". Patsy's mother has her on a couch in a silk-strewn artist's garret, running through a loud and pretentious self-narration the entire time. How much of all this "actually happened" is open to debate.
  • On All in the Family, Gloria begins labor, and steps into a phone booth to let her parents know, then gets stuck. Funny, because of Sally Struthers' deft handling of the physical comedy. She makes it out of the booth in plenty of time, incidentally, as this birth is preceded by a realistically long labor. It was also the first birth scene on American television, and quite realistic— lots of panting, grunting, and sweating, but no screaming, and a very, very boring wait in the white-walled labor room which had a bed, a chair, and one table. Hospitals didn't put TVs in them, and TVs only got a few channels anyway and went off the air at midnight. Gloria's husband Michael was in the room with her as well, making it the first time a TV father (in the US) was in the delivery room, reflecting the fact that American hospitals were just beginning to allow this.
    • This is one of the earlier uses of "will they get there in time," and employs something mundane, a phone booth, as opposed to an elevator or a cab heading into traffic, which you know will be a problem as soon as the actress steps into it. Stepping into a phone booth seems totally innocuous. Struther makes the call to her parents, turns around, and discovers that door is stuck. ( It's important to note that nothing over the top silly, like Struthers being stuck because the booth is too small for a woman who is nine months pregnant; she fits fine. She is stuck in the booth because the door won't open.)
    • If a show tried to use this schtick today, it might not play as well, because the "will they get to the hospital?" is pretty old; it wasn't so cliche back then. And Struthers handles it beautifully. She isn't generally thought of as a physical comic, but she was up for anything the writers of All in the Family threw at her, including this.
  • Angel: Wesley tries to show pregnant vampire Darla the Lamaze method of breathing, only for Darla to shriek, "I...DON'T...BREATHE!" and knock the entire Fang Gang flying.
    Cordy: Well you know what they say — birth, painful.
    Wes: Yes, but generally for the mother, not the bystanders.
  • Bones: All three women who give birth-Brennan, Daisy, and Angela. Daisy is possibly the best one. She plans on a new age-style birth with no drugs, but abruptly changes her mind:
    Daisy: I don't want darkness! I don’t want candles! I want shiny machines that go "beep!" I WANT AN EPIDURAL!
  • The Buccaneers (2023): Conchita wails throughout her lonely birthing scene. Her stuck-up British mother-in-law disdainfully comments that English women would never make such a fuss.
  • Happens all the time in Call the Midwife, of course. We are dealing with the era before painkillers and anaesthetics became common in obstetric practice; the first arrival of nitrous oxide as a pain reliever comes in Series 2 (1958) and is heralded as a great advance, and there isn't enough of the stuff to go 'round. Thus the rare occasion when it is averted (without the nitrous) all the more profound.
    • One particularly disturbing, unusually high-pitched scream comes right after the doctor has to widen the birth canal with scissors and no anesthetic. There's a Reaction Shot of the husband in another room, horrified.
  • Charité at War: Anni screams at the top of her lungs when she gives birth to her daughter — justified since she has a partial placenta praevia that hinders the baby from going into the birth canal smoothly, and the responsible doctor exerts massive pressure on her womb to help it out.
  • Coupling devotes an entire episode to Steve's horror at Susan planning to give birth without an epidural. Being practical, she's already realised that she's probably going to change her mind when it actually happens, and says it's Steve's job to decide if she really wants the drugs or not. In the event, he decides she does.
    (after Susan has told Steve to ask her three times if she wants an epidural)
    (cut to: Steve flying out the maternity ward doors backwards and ramming into the corridor wall)
    Midwife: She said, "You can't."
    Steve: Yeah, trust me, the word wasn't "can't."
  • Discussed in Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, when Daryl wonders why Heather isn't screaming in pain before she gives birth like women on television. Heather mentions that she had the sense to ask for all the drugs.
  • The Diagnosis: Murder episodes "Naked Babes" and "35 Millimeter Murder" both feature this, with the former being Amanda's friend Angela Pearson and the latter being Amanda herself. These are justified as in both instances, the women are not giving birth in a hospital (Angela in Amanda's house, Amanda in Jesse's car) and don't have access to the proper painkilling drugs. To be fair, Amanda more groans through gritted teeth than screams in her scene, and Angela is giving birth to quadruplets, alongside stressing out about the staff of the maternity home she was staying in trying to sell her babies off for cash.
  • The Dick Van Dyke Show: Laura goes into labor with Richie in an elevator stuck between floors. Naturally, Rob panics. Laura, for once, does not.
  • Doogie Howser, M.D. (Vinnie, not the titular Doctor, trapped in an elevator with a teacher. Fortunately, he and Doogie had spoken often on the subject of childbirth, this being a natural side-effect of their frequent discussions of sex.)
  • Several times on Emergency!. Justified in that as paramedics they don't get called in unless there are already situational factors to make the birth problematic— the standout example being in first-season episode "Brushfire", where there's a wildfire approaching the house and the baby is so close to being born that they can't get the mother out.
  • Giving birth turned up every so often in ER, but one notable example had the panting mother wheeling through the building with her husband and Doctor Kovacs.
    Kovacs: Do you want an epidural?
    Husband: No, we want a natural birth, don't we, honey?
    Wife: [bats husband aside, grabs Kovacs' shirt] Give me drugs!
  • Family Ties - Elyse goes into labor right when she is singing a song on TV and the sudden pain makes her hit the high note with an unexpected level of volume and pitch.
    • Subverted in that after the sudden shock of it she assures everyone it doesn't hurt too much, just a twinge every now and then. Probably because she already had three other kids prior she's used to it.
  • Aeryn's labor in the Farscape mini-series. Which she has whilst under siege. Half-standing up. Having fought up to the moment she decided she wanted the baby out of her.
    Aeryn: Shooting makes me feel better!
  • Firefly has an example in "Heart of Gold" when a pregnant prostitute gives birth. There is much screaming, due to a) giving birth, b) the child's father turning up to kidnap him, and c) the ongoing gunfight between the father's posse and the whorehouse's residents backed up by Serenity's crew.
  • Frasier. Roz's delivery of her daughter in season 5 is one of these, although we ultimately only see a few moments of it. Later, during the final season, Daphne considers having a natural, painkiller-free birth but Roz uses her own experience to talk her out of it. The final straw is when Daphne sees the birthing video of the couple who originally suggested the natural birth. The mother is loudly screaming and threatening everyone in the room. The doula who attended claims the woman laughed about the whole thing afterwards but Daphne isn't convinced.
  • In The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Aunt Viv screams when in labor with Nicky. Complete with serial hand crushing and ripping part of the banister off the stairs. There's a "stuck in an elevator" scene, but it's Will and Uncle Phil that are stuck, trying to get to the hospital.
  • Friends:
    • Phoebe's triplets, which is parodied in the same episode, where Joey goes through a similar experience by passing a kidney stone.
    • Rachel and Ross when they had Emma since Rachel spent over 40 hours waiting for the baby after her water broke. During delivery she screams so hard she accidentally headbutts Ross. Then again, according to dates given in the series, she was pregnant for about thirteen months. Averted by one woman who shares her room who reacts to her contractions by humming gently even as she nears delivery.
    • To help Rachel prepare for Emma's birth Phoebe lends her a friend's birthing video, which is apparently nothing but the mother screaming at the top of her lungs.
      Rachel: Why is that baby torturing that woman?!
    • Chandler and Monica subvert this with the baby they've arranged to adopt. The birth mother doesn't even realize she's in labor for a while, thinking she's just having stomach cramps. And, after everyone realizes the baby's coming, it's Monica who starts panicking and the birth mother who, in mid-contraction, has to calm her down.
  • Fringe does this in Season one. Justified in that she wasn't even pregnant half an hour before giving birth and it actually ended up snapping her spine.
  • McClennan goes through one in the final episode of series 2 of Get Krack!n, which the producer attempts to broadcast live on air.
  • Happens in the season 1 finale of Glee when Quinn gives birth, while their rivals, Vocal Adrenaline, perform "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen. It's a very intense scene, though it does make you wonder about the timeframe since she goes from her water breaking to giving birth within the span of five minutes. Seven if we count the commercial break.
  • In The Golden Girls, Blanche's daughter Rebecca has a natural childbirth, which makes it understandably more painful (Blanche comments, "Honey, I know I told you where babies come from, did I ever mention where they come out?"). However, then they go and visit a birthing center as a possibility, one happens offscreen.
  • Good Luck Charlie: In the second part "Special Delivery", Amy Duncan screams once while in labor with Toby, who was born in an ice cream truck. Her daughter Teddy took the role of a midwife.
  • House of the Dragon: As Queen Aemma says to her daughter Rhaenyra: "We have royal wombs, you and I. The childbed is our battlefield." And indeed, the first season features several painful birthing scenes (and most don't end well).
    • When Viserys comes to see Aemma after being told her labor isn't going well, she's howling in agony on the birthing bed. It's justified, as her unborn baby is in breech and all efforts to turn him - which is painful in and of itself - have been unsuccessful. Viserys asks if there's nothing the maester can do for the pain, though he states they can only give her so much milk of the poppy as they risk harming the baby. She stops screaming after a while because she's drugged and too exhausted. Then she starts screaming again both when she realizes they're going to cut the baby out of her and throughout the procedure, which is done without anesthesia and bleeds her to death.
    • Years later, Laena ends up in the same situation while delivering her third child with Daemon. Once she realizes that she isn't going to survive the birth and her child likely won't either, she cuts the screaming short, drags herself to Vhagar, and tearfully orders the dragon to end her suffering.
    • After giving birth to her third child (Joffrey), Rhaenyra has this exchange with her father Viserys:
      Viserys: Well done, my girl. I do hope the labor was easy.
      Rhaenyra: I think I called the midwife a cunt.
    • By the time of her sixth pregnancy, Rhaenyra is sent into premature labor by the heavy stress from the news of both her father's death and The Coup of the Hightowers to usurp the throne. She pulls the baby out all by herself while in pain, and her dragon Syrax feels it and thrashes about. The baby turns out to have died in her womb already.
    • By contrast, Alicent notes that the three times she gave birth were relatively easy. Of course, it doesn't hurt that she's not related to her husband.
  • The birth of Marshall and Lily's baby on How I Met Your Mother had one of these, probably partly due to the fact that Eriksen babies are notoriously huge, while Lily is...well, played by Alyson Hannigan. Comes complete with Lily's eccentric foreign doctor screaming abuse at her to make her keep pushing and a sweat-drenched Lily roaring "WHERE THE HELL IS MARSHALL??!!"
  • The Steven Spielberg mini-series Into the West has Jacob Wheeler's Sioux wife giving birth to their youngest child while they're briefly living with his parents; one of Jacob's cousins is surprised by her stoicism, saying that "She didn't cry out. Not once!", which leads to a rather racist comment by another cousin who believes that the Indians "don't feel pain. At least not like we do." Ironically, this cousin is later kidnapped by and married off to an Indian; when she eventually goes native and willingly becomes his wife, the birth of their child is shown immediately after it happened, with the implication that she didn't scream either.
  • JAG:
    • Harmon Rabb delivers a baby in "Code Blue" in a DC hospital taken over by Hamas terrorists. During the woman's labor, he is instructed over a cell phone to check her dilation but is reluctant to look under her dress, having never met her before. Panting, she tells him she doesn't have anything he hasn't seen before, so he bends down to look—then informs her with wide eyes that, in fact, he has never seen that before.
    • AJ Chegwidden delivers two babies in his office: Bud and Harriet's son in "Yeah, Baby", and another baby in "All ye Faithful".
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit takes a more realistic approach with Cathy Stabler. She moans while contracting and strains to push the baby out but never screams.
  • In The Librarians (2007), Christine goes to absurd lengths to avoid this, but the Rule of Funny intervenes.
  • Lost has shown many births on screen, often ending badly for the mother. The births in question are Aaron (on the island), Ben (whose mother subsequently dies), Ji Yeon (born in the future after Sun leaves the island), Locke (who is born premature and whose mother gives him up for adoption), Ethan (who is delivered by a time-traveling Juliet), and Jacob and the Man in Black (whose mother is subsequently murdered by the mysterious woman who delivered them).
    • Don't forget Desmond and Penelope's son, Charlie, born on a boat in the Philippines.
  • Mad About You (where Jamie's mother, played by Carol Burnett, reacts to Jamie's decision to have a "natural" childbirth, with no epidural, with a hilarious "Are you out of your mind?!?" A great commentary on changing ideas on "modern" childbirth.)
    • This was most likely a Shout-Out to one of Burnett's famous quotes, where she attempted to describe the pain of childbirth to men: "Take your bottom lip and pull it over your head."
  • In Magnificent Century, Hurrem is already a screamer in general, so all of her six births are very loud.
  • Hilarity Ensues on Mama's Family when Naomi has one of these. It results in a Panicky Expectant Father.
  • This happens in the Christmas Episode of Misfits, where Marnie's waters break, and she is forced to give birth in the community centre - with much screaming and swearing - as the paramedics don't arrive on time (although it is mentioned that they've called the ambulance numerous times, so exactly how long they'd been waiting there is unclear). Afterwards, calm resumes, and the gang even sing a Christmas carol to the suspiciously large newborn baby. The pleasant mood is then completely shattered by the emergence of the afterbirth, which Nathan mistakes for an evil alien baby that needs to die. He starts screaming (even more than Marnie did while she was giving birth) and frantically stamping on it, splattering the horrified gathered company in copious amounts of blood.
  • Murphy Brown Alongside Murphy's birth of Avery, one of her may secretaries also recalled her birth while Murphy was still pregnant.
    Jane: I was in labor for thirty-seven hours. Over a day and a half of the most horrible, unbelievable pain I've ever felt in my life. And I was pinned under a bus once, so I know pain. They had to tie me down to the table after I kicked my obstetrician in the windpipe. My husband took a video, it's just hour after hour of me begging to be killed.
  • Played to comedic effect in the episode of My Family where Janey has a baby. As Susan and Ben drive to the hospital, there are flashbacks to the birth of their first child, with much drama and over-the-top screaming. When they arrive, the baby has been born with no trouble at all, and Janey is sitting up painting her nails.
  • Happens when Janet gives birth to Ollie in My Hero (2000):
    Janet: AAAAHHH! What have you done to me, you stupid git?!
    George: Janet, we're in a church!
    Janet: I don't care if we're in the sodding Sistine Chapel! AAAAHHH!!
  • While it isn't shown on screen, in the episode of NCIS where Palmer's daughter is born, his wife Breena turned out to be resistant to the epidural medicine, and so had to deal with the birthing pains by squeezing her husband's hand. When the team shows up in the maternity ward to visit after solving the week's case, Palmer has two broken fingers. This trope did not come into play when McGee's kids are born, as the only real complication with his wife's delivery was the fact that a wounded terrorist had taken a different wing of the hospital hostage.
  • Newhart parodied this as Yuppie Stephanie managed to give birth with only a few yips, more concerned about the camera crew her TV Producer husband brought in to film the birth than about any pain she experienced.
  • Night Court: About a dozen pregnant women trapped in the courthouse due to a blizzard. Years later, this occasioned a Continuity Nod when the only doctor available for another delivery was not an obstetrician: he sarcastically asked how many people who were not obstetricians had delivered babies, and everyone raised their hands.
    Doctor: What are you people? Some sort of cult?
  • Psych averts this rather well in "Shawn vs. the Red Phantom," when Chief Vick goes into labor. It takes the entire episode (at least a day) for Vick to have the baby, and while she sweats and groans a lot, there's no screaming and she does so while on a tilted table. Lassiter comically DOES faint, although he claims he was just resting his eyes and fell over slightly.
    • Played straight when Marlowe Lassiter goes into labor "Shawn and Gus Truck Things Up" in Season 8. They drive her to the hospital in a food truck.
  • Reba has two of them, both of which happen in the first season.
    • Barbra Jean, whom Brock divorced Reba for after his extramarital affair with her ended up getting her pregnant.
      Barbra Jean: I... need... DRUGS!!
    • Cheyenne, who got pregnant after Van had sex with her, goes through this at the end of the first season.
      Cheyenne: I want my mommy!
  • In the Saturday Night Live sketch "The Day You Were Born", a little boy's parents tell him a sanitized story about how he was born, intercut with scenes of the Screaming Birth it actually was.
  • On Schitt's Creek Jocelyn goes into screaming labor, but Moira manages to still make it all about herself to the point where Jocelyn drives them to the hospital.
  • Scrubs played with this trope, during one of JD's dream sequences, when he ponders that most women assume childbirth will be this wonderful, magical thing. It then switches to a black-and-white fifties-era instructional video, where JD spells it out:
    JD: (to the viewer) You'll fart, pee, puke, and poo in front of ten strangers who will be staring intently at your vagina—which, by the way, has an 80% chance of tearing! (Gives thumbs up)
    Woman: (turns to her husband) You do it!
    • Justified when Kim was giving birth to JD's son. At the moment she was under some emotional turmoil and stress like the fact JD doesn't trust her ( she lied about having a miscarriage), he's only with her for the child, all of JD's friends treat her badly and she's worried about raising the child alone. The straw that breaks the camel's back is while she's (painfully) pushing the baby out, she asks if JD will ever forgive her. He says "No." and... well you can guess what happens next.
  • Sex/Life:
    • Billie is shown giving birth to one of her children while loudly screaming during a flashback.
    • Gigi in Season 2 also does this while having her son.
  • Happened in Smallville. The Baby wasn't so much "born" as it was "completely evaporated the mother and the car she was in".
  • Played for Laughs in Stargate Universe where when we learn what happened to the Destiny crew sent back in time we get a montage of screaming births.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
    • Deanna Troi (subversion; she's breathing a little heavy, but when asked if she wants something for the pain, she says "I have felt no pain.")
    • The birth of Miles and Keiko O'Brien's first child (from the appropriately-titled episode "Disaster") is combined with Locked in a Freezer, and has Lieutenant Worf as the Delivery Guy.
      Worf: Congratulations, you are fully dilated to 10 centimeters. You may now give birth.
      • This receives a hilarious Call-Back in the Deep Space Nine episode "Accession" when Keiko announces her second pregnancy. Chief O'Brien uses the exact words, "having a baby", prompting a visibly alarmed Worf to exclaim "Now?!" Upon finding out that the baby is due in seven months and Bashir jokingly suggesting Worf could assist with the delivery, Worf comes out with this choice line:
        Worf: Unfortunately, I will be away from the station at that time. Far away. Visiting my parents. On Earth. Excuse me.
  • Star Trek: Voyager: Justified in "Deadlock" when Ensign Wildman is giving birth to a Half-Human Hybrid with forehead spikes; the Doctor has to resort to teleporting the baby out of the womb when it gets stuck.
  • The Steve Harvey Show employs this trope when Regina's sorority sister Tiffany gives birth during a visit to Chicago. A huge snowstorm hits the city trapping Tiffany, her husband, Regina, and Cedric (posing as Steve who was posing as Regina's husband AND posing as an OB-GYN)in Regina's apartment. Hilarity Ensues.
  • In one episode of That '70s Show, Eric accompanies his mother Kitty, a nurse at the local hospital, while she's working. One patient she helps is a pregnant woman in labor, who grabs Eric's hand. When Eric yells "You're hurting me!", the woman says "You don't know what pain is!", and when she gives birth, Eric faints from the sight of it.
  • Subverted at the end of Threads, with Jane giving birth (with the expected screaming), but then no crying from the baby, for it seems to be stillborn (we never really see). Jane's reaction of screaming when she sees the baby suggests that it has some deformity, no doubt caused by all the radiation going around as a result of World War III.
  • In the UK comedy series Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, Janet goes into labour in her own house. While her husband Jonny proves utterly useless in getting her to the hospital (she eventually gets there by the end of the episode), she spends much time screaming and wailing, describing the sensation as "like someone's opening an umbrella in (her) ass" and screaming "the baby's trying to kill me!".
  • In Up All Night, Reagen is adamant about following a birth plan, and after trying to push unsuccessfully for a while, she tries to intimidate the doctor after he wants to do a C-section.
  • Happened with Scully on The X-Files, though she's less screaming from pain and more screaming at the uninvited Super Soldiers not to take her baby.

    Mythology & Religion 
  • The Bible:
    • Right in Genesis chapter 3, after Adam and Eve have committed the first sin together, God cursed the woman (and by extension, all women after her) with bearing children in pain, implying that this was going to happen. This is why some older media (like Blanche in The Golden Girls) refer to labor pains as "women's curse" and why epidurals were controversial when they were first developed; they were seen as subverting God's will.
    • In Revelation chapter 12, according to the NET Bible translation, John saw the woman clothed with the sun, that "she was pregnant and was screaming in labor pains, struggling to give birth." (from Revelation 12:2)
  • In Celtic Mythology, Cu Chulainn is forced to single-handedly defend Ulster from Queen Maeve's army after a curse from the goddess Macha is triggered, causing the men of Ulster to feel the pain of childbirth in their time of need; since Cu Chulainn is only seventeen and therefore technically not a man, he's not affected.

  • One of Kristina's many births happens on-stage in Kristina from Duvemåla, and while the scene mostly focuses on conversations between her husband and her best friend, who acts as midwife, the actress playing Kristina gets to do a fair share of screaming.
  • Owners: Averted. When Lisa goes into labour, the script specifically says she breathes heavily and is visibly in pain, but she does not scream.
  • In Street Scene, Mrs. Buchanan is never seen, but her blood-curdling screams can be heard as she gives birth at home.

    Video Games 
  • In the F.3.A.R trailer, we get to see Alma Wade giving birth. This goes as you expect: she's screaming in agony, medics around her freaked out, objects trembling thanks to her power, complete with her flinging the doctors around and the baby CLAWING ITS WAY THROUGH HER STOMACH!
  • The Guardian enemy in Dead Space. It constantly lets out an agonized wail and spawns little turret necromorphs through a hole in its stomach. Its screaming goes up an octave when a pod is spawned.
  • The Shadowbringers expansion of Final Fantasy XIV has a chain of side quests where you have to assist in the preparation of the Ondo's (fish people) Clutchmother's birthing process. When the time comes for her to deliver, she lets out a huge scream mixed in with swearing.
  • Tales of Graces: The birth of Carl and Fermat's baby. Like the Fullmetal Alchemist example above the people in the room are fairly young (18 for Asbel and Cheria, 22 for Pascal and possibly Fermat and Carl), don't understand the gravity of what's happening (Sophie), are panicking and since it's Fermat's first child, it's the perfect recipe for this trope.

  • Neatly subverted with Harley's sister in Boy Meets Boy. The screams are actually from the nurse who is holding her hand as she's giving birth.
  • Drowtales:
    • The sidestory "Spiderborn" features Mel'arnach going into labor and giving at least one very loud scream that can be heard outside the room (likely at the crowning stage), but the rest of the delivery apparently went over smoothly, though she was severely weakened afterward. Justified in that she was scared out of her wits, had never given birth before, and knew the child was likely to either not be normal or be taken away from her soon after, and in the case of the first situation both of them would probably be killed. Drow in general have an easy time giving birth, and as a result often have dozens of children.
    • In the main story Shinae is first reintroduced after the timeskip undergoing one of these, which turns out to be entirely justified since the baby was somehow corrupted by her taint in the womb and born horribly mutated, including being covered in spikes. Ow.
  • Sarine's Catapult Nightmare in Errant Story is both one non-stop birth scream, and a flashback to something that actually happened to her 2000 years earlier.
  • Kevin & Kell:
    • Played with in Kell's case: while she wasn't visibly seen screaming during the birth of Coney, apparently she logged into the 'middle-of-labor' forum and did her screaming there.
      Rudy: Isn't 'AARRRGGHH!!' spelled with four G's?
      Lindesfarne: They're notoriously bad on spelling here.
    • A weird case in Catherine Aura's case: she mostly gasped a lot. Which is strange, because she's a buzzard, and her egg was already laid, just hatching, so logically, she shouldn't be feeling labor pains at all.
    • In Kevin's telling of the Nativity, Mary (played by Kell), let out one big 'arrgh' and mostly panted through the rest of labor.
    • Tree apparently equates the shedding of pine cones as the equivalent of giving birth. And is quite vocal about it. Fenton, Tree's owner, doesn't even bat an eye.
    • Danielle clearly cries out at the very end of Francis's birth, and is implied to be crying out throughout, but her labor is juxtaposed with the election count between Kevin and Fran Caudal (who, ironically enough, becomes her opponent's sister's midwife).
    • Justified in Lindesfarne's case: she went into labor two weeks early because she was the target of a terrorist attack and ends up having to give birth at the side of a lake with a Delivery Guy whose experience comes down to 'mom is a midwife'. Apparently she was so loud Coney could text everyone a string of emojis pretty accurately describing how she sounded.
    • Averted entirely with Leona: because her half-rhino daughter was so big, natural childbirth was deemed too dangerous for her to try, so she had a c-section.
  • The Boss's delivery of her baby in The Last Days of FOXHOUND was difficult, yet she not only managed to keep fairly quiet and calm but... well, go read it yourself. Of course, The Boss was exceptionally badass even by the standards of the comic.
  • The Law of Purple: Gypsy gives birth off-screen, so it's unknown whether she has a genuine Screaming Birth, but when her contractions start she immediately announces this fact to her husband (and the three other men in the room with him) by bursting in and screaming "I'M GOING INTO LABOR!!".
  • Sabrina Online: In late 1999, Sabrina's friend Amy went through one of these, bringing a new character to the strip:
    • Sabrina herself goes through this, or at least the "inflict bodily harm on the father" part in part 2 of the "Baby Steps" arc.
  • Shortpacked!: Robin nearly didn't have time to scream, because her Super-Speed made her contractions come so swiftly, she only managed to get out one scream when she, quote, 'pooped [the triplets] out right into my leggings in the middle of the store'.

    Web Original 
  • In the Sam & Mickey episode "Delivery", Yasmin (of course) has a screaming labor and delivery, not in any way helped by her lack of pain medicine or by the family, especially Barbie and even the nurse caring for her, started singing a "push playlist" to encourage/annoy her, including "Push it", "Born This Way" and "Baby".
  • There is no GATE; we did not fight there: The interlude *Protector's Pride* focuses on the birth of Kyte's younger twin siblings, Adrastus and Aella. In the many hours it takes, Adrianna is noted to only stop screaming and cursing at the very end of her labor.
    Kytheus: What's going on?! Why is mom screaming? Is she hurt?
    Kell: It hurts, when a woman gives birth. Rennea and the midwives are taking care of her. The only thing we can do is wai—
    Kell: All we can do is wait. *nods at his own words*
  • The Weather: One skit features a pregnant woman (played by Alan) in the midst of giving birth, and shrieking all the way. The doctor and baby are also screaming.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Adventure Time episode "Web Weirdos", Finn and Jake encounter a married couple of giant spiders named Ed and Barb. By the end of the episode, the latter experiences one of these, giving birth to millions of babies.
  • In the All Grown Up! episode "What's Love Got To Do With It?", Angelica's teacher, Mrs. Smith, goes into labor and was screaming in pain, so much that she caved in to Angelica's request to raise her grade from a "D" to a "B" so Angelica would leave her alone.
  • Jay Sherman's adoptive mother, Eleanor Sherman, from The Critic, was in labor with her daughter, Margo, and she was yelling and screaming at her drunken husband, Franklin, threatening to get back at him for getting her pregnant in the episode "Every Doris Has Her Day".
  • Dexter's Laboratory has 2 examples, in "911", a pregnant woman in the back of a taxi was screaming while she was in labor as Dexter arrives to help deliver the baby. In "Lab-retto", Dexter's Mom was in labor with Dexter and was screaming during the beginning of this opera-based episode.
  • Lois's sister Carol on Family Guy, minus the "YOU DID THIS TO ME!" and with a series of guttural moans rather than screams. Ironically, the doctor passes out during the delivery, but only because he stuck his hand repeatedly into a bin of used needles while looking for gloves.
  • In The Flintstones special Hollyrock-a-Bye Baby (set in the future with Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm as a married couple expecting their first child) this happens to Pebbles as she's giving birth to her twins (at least the first one; the second is born in about five seconds without any screaming heard while Fred gloats over the first baby being a boy. This was the first animated work (at least in the U.S.) to show a birth on-screen.
  • In the Hey Arnold! episode "The Journal", Arnold's mother Stella is forced to have her son in an abandoned San Lorenzo temple while lava from a nearby erupting volcano flows past. Taking all this into account - not to mention the pain she must be enduring having natural childbirth to someone with Arnold's unusually shaped head - she has no problem showing her displeasure at her situation when her husband Miles tries to help her with her Lamaze breathing.
    Miles: Remember, breathe, breathe - just like in class - whoo, whoo-
    Stella: (lunging at Miles) Shut up! Shut Up! SHUT UP!!!
    • Which is followed by a pretty intense scene with Stella screaming off-screen while their friend Eduardo witnesses the destruction caused by the volcano eruption, which actually seems to be triggered by the screaming. Everything calms down once Arnold is born.
  • In Home Movies, Brendan's stepmother is giving birth and screaming and insulting everyone in vicinity, including him. The hilarious part is that he takes the screaming at face value and yells and insults back at her.
  • In the episode of Justice League Unlimited, "The Greatest Story Never Told", Booster Gold, a hero from the distant future looking for fame for his heroism, comes across a pregnant woman in labor, who was alone in an ambulance because of the paramedics being sucked into a black hole. The pregnant woman screamed real loud when Booster was trying to help her.
  • King of the Hill:
    • Luann screams all the way to the hospital before her husband's sister insisted that she give birth in a medical center with everyone watching, the Hills had to sneak her out.
    • Happened to Didi just before giving birth to Good Hank combined with Hank and Peggy's skydiving moment.
  • In Pepper Ann, Pepper Ann's mother, Lydia, screamed when she was in labor with her youngest daughter, Margaret Rose "Moose" Pearson, in the episode "The Way They Were".
  • The High Priestess of Aku undergoes one in Samurai Jack when delivering the septuplets who will become the Daughters of Aku. Not only does she survive, she walks it off and has enough energy left over to deliver a sermon in praise to Aku.
  • Hilariously/nightmarishly implied on The Simpsons in an episode that reenacts various Tall Tales (American folklore). In the vignette with Homer as Paul Bunyan, Abe (normal-sized) goes back in the cabin after the birth of his son, who takes up the entire living room. He runs into the bedroom and asks his (also normal-sized) wife how the birth went. She's in shock and weakly mutters "Whiskey... please..."
  • In the episode of We Bare Bears, "Yard Sale", Annie screamed twice when she went into labor.
  • Karen Beecher, A.K.A. Bumblebee, was screaming when giving birth to her daughter, Rhea, in the Young Justice episode "Unknown Factors". Her husband, Malcolm, was saying if she hurried, Rhea will be born on Martin Luther King Day, which caused Karen to yell at him for telling her to hurry.



Stay strong, Hana!

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Main / ScreamingBirth

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