From talking to women who've had both, I have learned that the pain of a kidney stone passing is far worse than labor pains. I think I'll pass on both, thanks. Unfortunately, my husband is not immune. We decided long ago not to have children, but I guess he just had to understand...
Yesterday, after watching him suffer through the night with agonizing abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, I took him to the emergency room just after dawn. We spent the next 8 hours at the hospital and the urologist's office during which time we got three different analyses on how big the stone was (answer: about the size of a hedgehog, and roughly the shape of one, too). In a little over an hour I'm taking him back for a procedure called a lithotripsy during which sound waves will be passed through his abdomen to turn the planet-sized obstruction into a series of asteroid-sized pieces that should pass more easily. I'm speaking approximately on these sizes, of course; the stone is the size of Jupiter, not the-I-used-to-be-a-planet Pluto.
I'm being facetious because this is the second time we've gone through this so I'm not freaking out as badly as I did six years ago, and because the procedure will be more comfortable and safer than last time. On that occasion we went to the hospital at 11PM via ambulance and I learned exactly how uncomfortable it can be to sleep in a hospital chair overnight while waiting to learn why my husband cannot move without agony. That time he had invasive surgery to remove the stone and he had a stent installed for two weeks to help him pass any other stone fragments which naturally led to a really nasty urinary tract infection.
I also want a word with his kidneys about their timing. The last emergency occurred a few days before my birthday, so my wish that year was to have my husband home and healthy. I got part of it (thanks to the nasty UTI, he wasn't yet healthy). This time, his kidneys decided to let loose just 5 days shy of our anniversary. I don't particularly like him to suffer at all, but why do they let go of their obstructions just in time for major holidays????
I hafta comment- I have delivered baby without meds AND have passed a couple kidney stones and while kidney stones DO hurt a lot...comparing that to having a baby is SO not true. Labor pain is much worse.
Labor pains can be alleviated if you use proper breathing techniques. Kidney stones, on the other hand, cause severe abdominal pain that comes in spasms. Abdominal pain associated with kidney stones is FAR MORE PAINFUL THAN LABOR PAIN.