Pain management. What do you prefer? And why?

I'm trying to gain perspective on the modern birthing process. I'm old enough to have a mother who didn't have the option for epidurals or nitrous, and have a sister who had an epidural once and a natural birth once. Both side with epidurals, but I'm personally afraid of them and against them. I would like to know what options you guys have thought of and how things worked out for you. 

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