Thursday, November 08, 2007

Birth Messages, Part II

Several of your comments on my last post raised a great point: there are GOOD birth stories out there. Thanks to those of you who shared yours.

Two of my own three birth stories are good ones.

Many of my clients have great birth stories.

I HATE it when people rush to tell pregnant women their birth horror-stories. So why so much negativity here?

One reason is the birth advocate in me can't let bad stories pass unnoticed. When women are being told their bodies can't labor, something is WRONG with our birth culture and with our attitude toward women generally.

Another reason is that I have self-imposed a ban on telling my client's birth stories here. The reason for that is long and painful. It is also one I have been wanting to tell when the time is right. I think it is right.

I will work on a post with that story. For now, know that I love happy birth stories. In fact, let me leave you with one:

A friend of my sister was expecting her first baby over the summer. At her baby shower she announced she was having a scheduled Cesarean section delivery. Then she pointed to my sister and said, "And don't you tell me what your sister would say. I don't care what's best for my baby or me. I am not going to feel that pain."

She didn't take childbirth classes. She planned her summer and her leave time around her surgery date.

Then her water broke 3 days before the surgery, she arrived at the hospital dilated to 5 centimeters, got an epidural, pushed out her 8 pound baby 3 hours later. The next morning she told my sister, "That wasn't bad at all. If I'd known that was all it would be, I wouldn't have been so scared and I'd never have scheduled surgery."

THAT is the message we need to share. This woman could be recovering from surgery now (or worse) just because she didn't know birth could be manageable!



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