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how do c-sections fit into a natural birth framework? - Page 3

post #41 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaylaBeanie View Post
Absolutely. The whole point of natural family living is to do what comes instinctively. If a woman has been in labor for many, many hours and instinctively feels she needs an epidural to rest, that needs to be respected If a woman has suffered abuse or another experience that has led to an intense fear of vaginal birth, she should be offered therapy, but should she decide that a c-section is least traumatic and will allow her to better bond/breastfeed/parent, that needs to be respected. If a woman is bullied or feared into a c-section/induction by a doctor who had claimed to be a natural birth advocate, she needs to be included and her birth respected. Last of all, sometimes c-sections are necessary. A natural birth is no good if it kills or damages mom/baby. There needs to be understanding and encouragement.

So well said.




Quote:
Originally Posted by GuildJenn View Post
I think people forget that death is natural too.

Mother nature does not care about you or your child. Yes, in the natural world in order for an entire species to survive, many members of that species need to survive (although obviously for some species, very few do to adulthood).

But mother nature does not care if ONE baby or ONE mother survives. Or if there is damage.

My baby died because we were not able to have a c-section in time for various complicated reasons. There is no question that had we had a section at the critical point, she would have been fine. Instead I watched the very natural process of her oxygen-starved 4 days of life culminating in death.

It was biology at its most dictatorial, really. Natural does not necessarily mean safe or risk-free. People who think that are enjoying a luxury in their experience.

So - basically I think that unless people are ready to return to losing babies at delivery at the same rates that they would die naturally, yes, absolutely there is room for intervention including c-sections.
I'm so sorry for your loss.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PlayaMama View Post
there is also an idea that women should "trust their bodies" and that their birth will go as nature intended. the consequences of this can be that when birth does not go well, these women's bodies are failures. i have seen it expressed on here several times that this can cause great amounts of anguish and guilt.
I have also seen this a lot here, and it makes me kind of sad and angry.


I've always seen it as, it is natural for bith to go right, and also natural for birth to go wrong. I had a relatively easy birth, no epidural. It's not because I am better or stronger than anyone-- it's because I had a fairly fast and straight-forward labor, a supportive team, an understanding OB, and a good amount of luck. Luck is the part of birth that always seems to be overlooked-- if you need reminding, look at someone who has done everything "right" and ends up with a homebirth transfer c-section, and then someone who has had an induced labor with epidural while the cervix is high and tight, stays in bed the whole time, and has an easy vaginal delivery with no tears. All of our bodies are built differently and respond differently to childbirth. In the time before c-sections and other things were available, a LARGE number of women and children died in childbirth. There is definitely sometimes a need for "intervention."

For me the idea behind NCB, and behind MDC, is not that you have to birth in this way or that way, but the idea of supporting mothers and encouraging them to inform themselves and take charge of their bodies and their births. Whatever their choices may end up being. The idea is not to subscribe to one method as "best," but to prevent them from being LIED to. And I'll say something else-- OBs can lie to women, Midwives can lie to women, AND natural child birth proponents can lie to women. To me an OB lying to a woman about an intervention that she "needs" but is actually not neccessary, is no worse than a NCB proponent telling a woman "If you do this, this, and this, your body will automatically work and you will have a fantastic birth." That's a lie because NO ONE is GUARANTEED a "perfect birth." No matter how low-risk you are, no matter how much you read, study, and practice, no matter how you plan to birth.

For me it's the same with breastfeeding-- if you can breastfeed, fantastic, your effort and luck paid off. And I think women should be given all the information and support we can give them to help them breastfeed. But if a woman can't breastfeed, for whatever reason, she also needs to be supported, not vilified. Same with c-sections and epidurals.
post #42 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuildJenn View Post
I think people forget that death is natural too.

Mother nature does not care about you or your child. Yes, in the natural world in order for an entire species to survive, many members of that species need to survive (although obviously for some species, very few do to adulthood).

But mother nature does not care if ONE baby or ONE mother survives. Or if there is damage.
This is so true, so often ignored. There seems to be a really pervasive myth in the NCB community that before OBs came along, birth was wonderful and perfect and empowering and blah blah blah. Well, it wasn't. Childbirth was the number one killer of women of childbearing age. And in many developing countries, it still is. Clean water and nutritious food help to an extent, but to try and pin it all on dirty water and crappy food is ridiculous.

Quote:
For me the idea behind NCB, and behind MDC, is not that you have to birth in this way or that way, but the idea of supporting mothers and encouraging them to inform themselves and take charge of their bodies and their births. Whatever their choices may end up being. The idea is not to subscribe to one method as "best," but to prevent them from being LIED to. And I'll say something else-- OBs can lie to women, Midwives can lie to women, AND natural child birth proponents can lie to women. To me an OB lying to a woman about an intervention that she "needs" but is actually not neccessary, is no worse than a NCB proponent telling a woman "If you do this, this, and this, your body will automatically work and you will have a fantastic birth." That's a lie because NO ONE is GUARANTEED a "perfect birth." No matter how low-risk you are, no matter how much you read, study, and practice, no matter how you plan to birth.
Yes, this.

Quote:
There are so many statements that aren't remotely evidence based, and which basically come down to "birth: YOU DID IT WRONG." Intuition isn't scientific. Trusting birth doesn't keep your placenta from abrupting, and not trusting birth won't somehow cause you to encounter a rare and true complication.
Yes. Thank God I gave up on "trusting birth" with my second baby, or she would absolutely be dead. As it was, she's permanently disabled. And while I don't think having a c/s earlier would have completely prevented her brain injury (it likely happened up to a month prior to labor starting), the stress of a 72 hours labor certainly did nothing to help, and likely made it worse. And in theory people say "well of course if there are signs something is wrong, do something, etc" yet the reality that I see is too often, women with serious signs that something is wrong ignore it and "trust birth" and their babies pay the price (and sometimes, the woman herself dies).

Yeah, ideally it should be about education and supporting women to make their own decisions, but I don't think it usually plays out that way. And furthermore, who gets to do the educating? OBs downplay the risks of intervention, while NCB advocates completely overblow them. Just look at some of the recent threads here; if a woman chooses induction, or intervention, or c/s, it's automatically assumed that she was ignorant and uneducated.

I guess I just see a huge disconnect between the philosophy of natural birth and the reality.

Quote:
"But in that choice I had to give up my coveted place in the natural birth community." The bolded is exactly how I've felt, but unable to put so poignantly. Ugh. I am a LLL Leader, and everytime birth comes up, I feel sort of sick.
Yes. When I was planning my HBAC the support was overwhelming. When I wound up with a CBAC, a lot of it went away. I suppose though that I got a "pass" to an extent because my daughter was severely brain damaged and obviously needed a c/s, but I still had to deal with stupid shit about how I must have "manifested" her stroke with negative thoughts, or, my favorite, she "wanted" to be born severely brain damaged and nearly blind.

Then when I was planning a vba2c, again, support was great. Until "they" would discover I was planning it at a hospital, with an OB. Then it was a lot of snarky "well good luck, but you're never going get an vba2c like that."

And I'm not in anyway saying that "the other side" doesn't do or say similar things. But the NCB community is the one that purports to have the monopoly on trusting and empowering and supporting women. And that might be true in theory, but in practice, it's bullshit.
post #43 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaylaBeanie View Post

In fact, reading many of the stories here of women who suffer negative feelings following c-sections, there is usually some variation of the woman saying "I never thought I'd have a c-section, I did everything right to avoid it, but still ended up with one." With home birth and women who plan (actually plan, not just hope for) natural births, few seem to realize that a c-section might be the outcome, even if they do everything perfectly. The shock of the unexpected probably has a lot to do with the trouble coping.
.

Yes, but you can know this, and talk the talk, without really *knowing* it. I was the first person to jump up and say that my HB was safe BECAUSE I had a strong back-up plan and that my midwife's transfer rate of 5% meant that I could very well need to be transferred, but that at that point I would know that I had done everything possible to birth my baby at home. I knew all of these things. As a doula I counseled women in this idea also.

But oh wow, is it ever different to live it. So very deeply humbling. So sad and so uprooting of your entire view of early mothering. The most humbling aspect of becoming a mother is how many things you do *not* have control over. Surrender to motherhood in whatever form it takes is a hard lesson to learn on the very same day you are welcoming your most precious beautiful child into your life. The duality of grieving your birth ideal gone wrong and celebrating your child is a lot to bear, all while recovering from surgery and being up all hours breastfeeding. Now add to that being judged by the same women who were so friendly and encouraging of you days before.

The NBC, IMO, does NOTHING to help this process, as a whole. I have found women who do understand but they are few and far between. Thank god my midwife is an angel who helped me talk it out and spent hours sharing her perspective of events. She is was instrumental in re-framing my thought process.

It's been wonderful to read this thread. Thank you OP for starting it. Very healing to hear everyone else's experiences.
post #44 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by CherryBomb View Post
Yes. When I was planning my HBAC the support was overwhelming. When I wound up with a CBAC, a lot of it went away. I suppose though that I got a "pass" to an extent because my daughter was severely brain damaged and obviously needed a c/s, but I still had to deal with stupid shit about how I must have "manifested" her stroke with negative thoughts, or, my favorite, she "wanted" to be born severely brain damaged and nearly blind.
That's outrageous. I can't believe anyone would even think that, much less say it to you. I'm sorry you had to deal with that.
post #45 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by CherryBomb View Post
Yeah, ideally it should be about education and supporting women to make their own decisions, but I don't think it usually plays out that way. And furthermore, who gets to do the educating? OBs downplay the risks of intervention, while NCB advocates completely overblow them.
I agree with this and think it can be a problem, but I don't know any solution. I get really tired a lot because it's like everything you read seems to have a "my way is best" agenda, which is automatically going to cause distrust in the information presented. Again, it is on both sides, but in this I get most disappointed in OBs and the medical community because realistically, the BIG majority of women birth with an OB. And it really upsets me when they are being flat-out lied to or manipulated, and it's not really their fault because they have no reason to not trust a doctor.

I don't know, it's a tough situation, I think that birth in this country is in need of reform. And by "reform" I don't mean "no one should get epidurals," I mean we should have ACTUAL informed consent and more support of mothers. And the situation with VBACs is ridiculous. You shouldn't have to have to choose between trying a VBAC at home, or have an automatic repeat c-section, but it often seems like those are the only two options women have.
post #46 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Altair View Post
Having been a HB doula for 10 years prior to getting pregnant, I had *no* doubt I'd have a blissed out waterbirth in my living room. We even filmed our trial runs and made a blog/documentary about how excited and unafraid we were of our birth.

And then it started... and it was all the huge amounts of pain I knew it would be, but I was so grateful to be doing it. One of the most poignant, and heartbreaking moments of my life came over 60 hours later, after 15 hours of pushing a big headed stuck baby, when I just stood up naked in the tub and grabbed on to my partner's neck and sobbed sobbed sobbed. He knew at that moment what I meant by those cries. My dream of a homebirth was dying. Baby was healthy, I was healthy, but he just simply wasn't being born. Slipping in and out of life and death I felt in the last of those hours of pushing... and I just stood up and made the decision to live. But at that same moment I was giving up the moment I had been dreaming and dreaming about, feeling my boy push out and slide up my body to my breasts. I ached for that sensation my entire pregnancy.

I chose to get a c-section at that moment because I believed 100% his chances and my chances of health and life were stronger with that choice. But in that choice I had to give up my coveted place in the natural birth community. I was so *bitter* about all my friend's homebirths happening in the same few weeks. I was so sensitive to ANY questioning of mothers who had never had c-sections going on and on about how horrible they are.

A year later my scar is so dark and prominent and much higher than any other I've seen. Every day when I look at it I feel slightly less bitter, but it's a long, hard process. My son is worth any ideal being broken, he's worth any pain on my part. If it takes ripping my body to shreds to get this big and beautiful guy out of me, sign me up.

But you're exactly right, OP, it's so hard to see where you fit in the NB community anymore.
Awww, I am so sorry that happened to you ! . You express it very beautifully. This thread is so healing because I feel so much the same as you described and it is so nice to process these feelings with others! It is nice to know that there are many women who ARE natural homebirth natural parenting women- who have birthed their babies from c section.

And I also feel at times jealous of the blissful births around me. But the more I hear others' stories that are similar to mine, the more at peace I feel. I even wondered why there isn't a c section area on MDC- strange, y'know?

there is this thing of c sections and natural parenting being polar opposites but I think that is closing. Yes, that is because the medical system does c sections at the drop of a pin these days. But none the less there are many of us who have them who still have those core non intervention self empowered beliefs. And I think it is good to connect about that.
post #47 of 260
I live in a pretty crunchy area, and I have to say that for me the biggest part was(and still is) how no one "gets" how insulting it is to insinuate that something is "wrong" with you. It's true I am now way more fragile, my T is an obvious reminder of that, I cannot see it, in fact my scar is barely visible and the T is on the inside. I've had one person who actually understood that, my SIL due to the fact she had a c/s and had to fight for her subsequent 4 VBACs. She knew exactly what I was talking about because she'd been questioned about that exact incision, the chance of rupture from that type of incision is markedly higher than that of a normal bikini incision, it's just too large of a cut. My Dr flat out told me that while most women are candidates for VBAC I was not, due the the severity of the cut. Maybe if I hadn't pushed so much, maybe DD wouldn't have been so far down and wedged. I mean I felt bruising on the left side of my pelvis for a YEAR! That's how stuck she was, ugh.

I have always been fine with my c/s, I never felt like it was the terrible thing that many women feel like it is, maybe that is because I did labor, labor for me sucked. Like I said before I was PUKING my guts out with every contraction(which is like being torn in two), I felt terrible, it was at times excruciating. My intuition did tell me that things were going wrong, I mean I felt my uterus go soft, it was a very weird surreal experience. My stomach just went soft, it was very pretty scary-that moment I just knew that it was time, thankfully I was where I was and DD was out in a half an hour.


Honestly I never felt anything badly about it until that comment by the local midwife and here on MDC.
post #48 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by LemonPie View Post
I have mainstream friends who have had c-sections and rave about how wonderful they were and insist that if I ever have another one that a scheduled section doesn't hurt as much as an emergency section.
Okay. This is slightly OT, but I'm sick to death of this one. In general, I believe that scheduled sections are easier on the mom than emergency/emergent sections are. In my case, my initial recoveries with all three scheduled sections were easier than my initial recoveries with either emergency section. (I'll mention, though, taht with my first, they kept me doped up - first morphine, then sleeping pills - for over 12 hours post-op, then kept me on a fluids only diet for 3.5 days, so I was utterly exhausted. With my other one, I'd had almost two weeks of pretty intense prodromal labour, followed by about two days of hard labour, plus some kind of infection, plus my son had died - so, yeah - it was hell - not sure how much of that was actually the surgery, yk?)

However, my long-term recoveries have been the worst with my three scheduled ones. With dd1, I ended up with incision pain that lasted for 7-8 months. With ds2, my incision became infected (skin layer only, thankfully) and didn't close for almost two months. I experienced numbness throughout my pelvis and abdomen that never did completely go away (ds2 is almost five). I still can't feel my bladder properly, and for about 8 months, I couldn't feel my clitoris.

With dd2 - my last, and by far the "easiest" of my sections - the numbness has increased again. It's not as bad as it was immediately after I had ds2, but it's worse than it was before my last surgery. She's only 10 months, so I'm semi-hopeful that this won't be permanent. But, it sucks.

Scheduled c-sections are still major surgery, and just because you (using the general "you", not referring to anyone in particular here) had a better, or even good, experience with one (or more) doesn't mean that's always going to be the case.

Okay- off my soapbox to read the rest of the thread.
post #49 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by CherryBomb View Post
And I'm not in anyway saying that "the other side" doesn't do or say similar things. But the NCB community is the one that purports to have the monopoly on trusting and empowering and supporting women.
So does the OB community. They claim to be all about "healthy moms and healthy babies" and it's a crock.

Bottom line is, if you're pregnant, and things don't go well, you have a pretty good chance of ending up in the hands of someone who does not care about you or your baby. That's the truth. We can pretty it up all we want - and I understand why we do - but the chances are pretty good that's what's going to happen.
post #50 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post

Bottom line is, if you're pregnant, and things don't go well, you have a pretty good chance of ending up in the hands of someone who does not care about you or your baby. That's the truth. We can pretty it up all we want - and I understand why we do - but the chances are pretty good that's what's going to happen.
I disagree with this completely, at least IME. In my hospital I never felt like they didn't care, even when I was faced with not having my Dr who was there for my entire prenatals there. I knew that it was a possibility she wouldn't be there, she had a family emergency come up right before my due date. In all honestly the attending Dr was more caring and wonderful, she is also a pediatrician, so maybe that is why. Her colleague was an amazing soft spoken Dr, he plainly asked how long I'd pushed and felt how high DD was and said we need to get her out now. They never seemed callous or uncaring, maybe that is the fact with many places, but I NEVER felt like that.

I felt so good with them that I chose to have the same team help bring my son into this world, I would do it again if I were to have more children, but I'm not. I just don't feel like everyone in the medical field is a bunch of uncaring a**holes, sure they are out there, but you can say that about anything.

Stormbride-I'm sorry that you feel so angry, I just don't believe that it is all bad, I fully believe you have had bad experiences and for that I am sorry.

I'm not trying to pretty things up, in all honesty my experiences with both my c/s's were good, it was the comments made to me after the fact that pissed me off.
post #51 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
I disagree with this completely, at least IME. In my hospital I never felt like they didn't care, even when I was faced with not having my Dr who was there for my entire prenatals there. I knew that it was a possibility she wouldn't be there, she had a family emergency come up right before my due date. In all honestly the attending Dr was more caring and wonderful, she is also a pediatrician, so maybe that is why. Her colleague was an amazing soft spoken Dr, he plainly asked how long I'd pushed and felt how high DD was and said we need to get her out now. They never seemed callous or uncaring, maybe that is the fact with many places, but I NEVER felt like that.

I felt so good with them that I chose to have the same team help bring my son into this world, I would do it again if I were to have more children, but I'm not. I just don't feel like everyone in the medical field is a bunch of uncaring a**holes, sure they are out there, but you can say that about anything.

Stormbride-I'm sorry that you feel so angry, I just don't believe that it is all bad, I fully believe you have had bad experiences and for that I am sorry.

I'm not trying to pretty things up, in all honesty my experiences with both my c/s's were good, it was the comments made to me after the fact that pissed me off.

Thank you for this. I want nothing more in life than to be a midwife. I have visions of myself 15 years down the road, catching babies in tubs at 3 am, sitting on the bed next to a client while I measure her belly. Helping her latch right after the baby is born. You know what though? I'm not going to be a midwife. I'm working my butt off in school, and I start studying for the MCAT this winter. If there is any possible way I am smart enough, I will become an Ob/Gyn. I'm becoming a doctor because I want to be a midwife, so that I can be *that* amazing doctor who we hear about, like the doctors you had.
post #52 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
I disagree with this completely, at least IME. In my hospital I never felt like they didn't care, even when I was faced with not having my Dr who was there for my entire prenatals there. I knew that it was a possibility she wouldn't be there, she had a family emergency come up right before my due date. In all honestly the attending Dr was more caring and wonderful, she is also a pediatrician, so maybe that is why. Her colleague was an amazing soft spoken Dr, he plainly asked how long I'd pushed and felt how high DD was and said we need to get her out now. They never seemed callous or uncaring, maybe that is the fact with many places, but I NEVER felt like that.

I felt so good with them that I chose to have the same team help bring my son into this world, I would do it again if I were to have more children, but I'm not. I just don't feel like everyone in the medical field is a bunch of uncaring a**holes, sure they are out there, but you can say that about anything.

Stormbride-I'm sorry that you feel so angry, I just don't believe that it is all bad, I fully believe you have had bad experiences and for that I am sorry.

I'm not trying to pretty things up, in all honesty my experiences with both my c/s's were good, it was the comments made to me after the fact that pissed me off.
I agree with you, too. I am so sad for women who don't feel this way, though, it's heartbreaking to feel like your care providers don't actually care.

One of the aspects that helped me tremendously to cope was the feeling that the whole team, from the OB to the nurse's assistant, cared about me and my baby and our safety and well-being. They truly wanted what was best for us.

Good, caring OBs do exist. Painting them all with the same brush (as evil, lying, disinterested, money-hungry, what have you) is totally unfair.
post #53 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
So does the OB community. They claim to be all about "healthy moms and healthy babies" and it's a crock.

Bottom line is, if you're pregnant, and things don't go well, you have a pretty good chance of ending up in the hands of someone who does not care about you or your baby. That's the truth. We can pretty it up all we want - and I understand why we do - but the chances are pretty good that's what's going to happen.
I have to say I've experienced it both ways. My first delivery with my daughter was truly insanely bad - I would say not caring is pretty accurate - and the way I was treated afterwards was terrible. I would honestly rather give birth in the middle of a road at rush hour than go back to that hospital and team.

My second was the absolute opposite. I had amazing prenatal care and support. My OB - a crusty white old guy btw - really worked with me and my feelings to arrive to a place where I could attempt a vaginal delivery ("If we can avoid major abdominal surgery, we should. I really want you to tell me what you would need to attempt a vaginal delivery. But it will be an option for you all along.")

He was not there for delivery but had left extremely clear instructions. The nurses, both pre-natal and L&D, were caring and kind and professional and gave me as much choice and room as possible. The delivering OB didn't quite get why I was so freaked out (mostly because no one who hadn't read the first delivery chart ever believed me on the first pass of my story) but she stuck with me and got me through what ended up being a very quick delivery.

So there really are good teams out there and I am so sorry you didn't have one.
post #54 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
I disagree with this completely, at least IME. In my hospital I never felt like they didn't care, even when I was faced with not having my Dr who was there for my entire prenatals there. I knew that it was a possibility she wouldn't be there, she had a family emergency come up right before my due date. In all honestly the attending Dr was more caring and wonderful, she is also a pediatrician, so maybe that is why. Her colleague was an amazing soft spoken Dr, he plainly asked how long I'd pushed and felt how high DD was and said we need to get her out now. They never seemed callous or uncaring, maybe that is the fact with many places, but I NEVER felt like that.

I felt so good with them that I chose to have the same team help bring my son into this world, I would do it again if I were to have more children, but I'm not. I just don't feel like everyone in the medical field is a bunch of uncaring a**holes, sure they are out there, but you can say that about anything.

Stormbride-I'm sorry that you feel so angry, I just don't believe that it is all bad, I fully believe you have had bad experiences and for that I am sorry.

I'm not trying to pretty things up, in all honesty my experiences with both my c/s's were good, it was the comments made to me after the fact that pissed me off.
I never said it was all bad, or anything about everybody in the medical field. I said you have pretty good chance of it. You do.

I've had one good nurse every time. And, everybody treated me quite decently after Aaron (in most ways - there are a few exceptions, probably because I was an evil HBAmC'er). The staff were mostly really good after dd2, as well. It would be nice if all expectant mothers got the treatment that mothers get after a loss, honestly.

There are good people in the trenches. The system, imo, doesn't care. And, a lot of people who aren't bad people also have priorities that have little or nothing to do with the health of the mother or baby...especially the mother. That's not "all" of them...but that doens't mean it's not a lot of them.
post #55 of 260
Okay - I just read the rest of the comments.

Where did I say that good care providers don't exist? Where did I say that all medical professionals are disinterested in the mother and baby?

You're all replying to comments I did not make. If you don't believe there's a good chance of getting a professional who doesn't care about you, that's fine. But, there is. If there weren't a good chance of it, you wouldn't hear so many stories of abusive and negligent "care" providers. "A pretty good chance you'll get" is not the same as "you're guaranteed to get".

I will say that I've either been insanely unfortunate, or have different standards for my "birth" team than many. People can have good intentions and still not actually give a crap about you. My GP didn't...and she's the one who was suffering insomnia, because she was so worried about me. She cared about the one risk factor that concerned her...and not at all about the things that concerned me.


Marylizah: "They truly wanted what was best for us." In some ways, those ones are the worst, because ime, they also tend to be the ones who feel that their definition of "best for us" is the only one that matters.

FWIW, I've had four different OBs do my surgeries. There's only one of them that I wouldn't go out of my way to avoid if I saw her in public. And, I have some suspicion that if I'd been seeing her for a VBAmC, instead of signing up for another cut, I wouldn't have liked her half as well as I did (although still considerably better than any of the others).
post #56 of 260
I am weeping with joy that this thread has been posted and am so grateful for the truthful & respectful conversation that's happening here. And I can relate to so much of what's been said.

Here's another thing I've been thinking about: how grief can affect our experiences giving birth. In my case, I was given up for adoption immediately following my own birth, placed in the care of nuns for 3 weeks before being adopted. 28 years later, the mother who raised me and to whom I had a very close & loving relationship died of ovarian cancer.

Both of these experiences are sources of very deep grief for me, that I carry in my body. It is not the kind of grief that one "gets over" or that therapy, spiritual support, or "positive" life experiences can completely do away with. This grief is part of who I am, and I have an evolving relationship with it, which I've explored intimately through many years of therapy, art making, etc. It hasn't stopped me from being a productive citizen or forming close relationships or wanting to be a mother myself, but it has made some things more intense & harder than they might otherwise have been, including the decision to become a mother myself.

I believe that deep-seated grief--not just the feelings, but the actual changes it has caused in my body--was one of many factors that contributed to my c-section, but more pointedly, has influenced my journey of healing from my own experience giving birth. I was a complete mess for for basically a year after my daughter was born. The trauma of delivery, followed by months of sleep deprivation & a 12-week breast infection, was enough to bring all my old grief to the surface as if I had never "worked through" it before. I didn't realize how successfully I had coped with my grief and loss until all my coping mechanisms were stripped away and I was a raw as, well, the day I was born. Things are much better now; the fact that I can post something on this forum actually feels like a huge step forward.

In my recovery from c-section and my journey becoming a mother, I've needed as much help fitting this new experience into my life story as I've needed help with the physical & emotional recovery. I know that I'm resilient (as are all human beings!) and that I can find a way to integrate this difficult & transformative experience into who I am. And the medical world isn't going to help me with that part of things...and I'm not sure if NBC is equipped for it either. Still searching...
post #57 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
So does the OB community. They claim to be all about "healthy moms and healthy babies" and it's a crock.

Bottom line is, if you're pregnant, and things don't go well, you have a pretty good chance of ending up in the hands of someone who does not care about you or your baby. That's the truth. We can pretty it up all we want - and I understand why we do - but the chances are pretty good that's what's going to happen.
I'm sorry, but I don't agree. At all. I'm genuinely sorry that that's been your experience, but it hasn't been mine, and it hasn't been the experience of most of the people I know. Out of 3 hospital births, including a HB transfer with a severely injured baby and a 2 week NICU stay, I had a grand total of one shitty nurse and one rude OB. Everyone else was fantastic. It's not THE truth, it's YOUR truth based on YOUR experience.
post #58 of 260
I guess I just disagree with the statement, sure you didn't say everybody, but the tone of the statement is the odds are you'll get someone who doesn't care. I just don't believe that most providers are uncaring, many yes, most no. IME, the providers I know are kind and do care, maybe that's due to where I live. My provider for DS who was the attending Dr for my DD's birth-did/does care. She teared up when the corner of my placenta lifted causing bleeding when I was 16 weeks along. She was in fact scared for me and my baby, and no one can tell me differently-I'm the one who saw her face.

I mean for me the most callous statement came from someone who is supposed to be soooooo supportive of mothers, but in reality she hurt me more than the the c/s actually did.

For me I guess I just don't harbor a bunch of negative feelings about this, I know for myself that the birth of my children was a small portion of the life I lead with them. I just can't dwell on the ways things could, should, would have been-this is how they are and I am at peace with it.
post #59 of 260
a bit on intuition as i see it...

often, people think that intuition is detailed. i do not think that this is usually the case. sometimes, intuition is crystal clear-- "your placenta is abrupting, go to the hospital." but most of the time, it's something like "something feels off" and then a symptom shows up (crazy bleeding for example), adn then we go "ok! time to get help!"

i find that most *people* have at least this experience of intuition--the "something doesn't feel right" part or the "this feels right" part. it may not have any details at all.

the use of intuition is also a relevant topic, i think.

for me, it's not just about intuition alone, but at the end of the day, it is a part of the decision making process. that is, it's about trusting yourself to make the right decision for yourself, rather than relying on someone else to make that decision for you. Some people will do whatever their chosen authority says--doctor says X, so i do X. pastor says X, so i do X.

but, most people will trust themselves over anyone else. trusting themselves is a good thing. it is something that i value highly. and certainly, i trust myself over any other outside authority, because only I can know the full context of my experience. it is, in a sense, making yourself your own authority.

so, the individual is taking in a *lot* of information. analytical information such as studies, information from texts, experts in various fields, and so on. that person is also taking in the opinions and ideas of others. and, the person has his or her own personal experience. and, this person is integrating information in his/her own way. and then ultimately, making choices based on all of that information.

i believe that only the individual can know what is right and best for him or her, and i believe that ultimately, if a person trusts themselves, then they are utilizing intuition at some level. so for me, the term is used quite broadly.

------

i also think it is important to speak about the "moral question." and the "trusting birth/bodies" situation.

others have mentioned that it is not a moral issue to have complications. i absolutely agree.

the landscape of birth is vast--from pleasurable, uncomplicated births to extremely complicated births that end in injury or death. that is a massive diversity.

no one birth is "right" and another "wrong." it is simply what birth is. birth is *all* of these things. and, no one knows who will be on one end of the spectrum or who will be on the other. this is part of the "risk" of birth.

i believe that we understand that, by becoming pregnant, we are accepting this risk. we are accepting that our births can be complicated, could require extreme interventions, and even with all of that (or without it), could end in our deaths or the deaths of our children. but we are willing to take that risk because of the possibility of the reward--a healthy child and mother.

the reality is that birth is unpredictable. we cannot know what is the best course of action for this or that mother prior to her pregnancy. all we can do is support her in her process of seeking information and choosing what is right and best for her out of all of the options available.

and if it does go to a natural, albeit a-worst-fear extreme, for a woman, then we can also be hear to hold her in our hearts and offer--as best we can--the support she needs to heal from the experience.

but the body isn't broken or nor did the mother fail. it was simply that birth is unpredictable, and that she required help.

and there's nothing at all wrong in asking for and receiving help.
post #60 of 260
I'm terrified of a c-section. I'm terrified of any surgery, but if I needed one for my baby or me, I'd have one and I wouldn't look back. I'm pregnant with my third and knowing patterns of babies generally being bigger than the last and how freaking huge I am already, I have to say, I'm pretty scared about my body and my endurance.

I've played animal midwife a million times and that's about as natural as it gets (well, without the humans, but no medicine, no epidurals, no monitors etc.). A lot of the times, you end up with a dead baby (and sometimes a dead mother), unless you can get a vet there asap. It's not the same as women of course, but it taught me that delivery sometimes does need some serious assistance.

One of my dearest friends who is about as conventional and mainstream as they come when it comes to medicine had a necessary c-section. Anyone examining her other views, would probably determine that it was less than necessary, but without giving her whole birth story away, it was indeed very necessary and so I am very careful not to judge moms and avoid people who would. It's not an example I want to set for my kids anyhow.

I really feel bad for moms who have had c-sections and somehow feel like failures. I have my own failure feelings over my hormones and breastfeeding and I know how awful they are. I wouldn't wish it on anyone and truly hope folks can work past those feelings as hard as that is to do. I think it's part of my job to support other mothers. I don't know why, maybe because I'm a social worker. It just takes way too much energy to be negative about people's choices or situations that I have no control over, as opposed to helping, supporting or just befriending them.
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