I was thinking about this last night and the thing that really stood out to me was the unnecessary fear that must have been felt by both mom and dad... can you imagine how frightening that must have been? And without much need. I mean yes, an unplanned homebirth would probably be stressful, but if you've been educated about normal birth, perhaps been at a normal birth, have family/friends who have had normal births... well, the stress is there, but probably not the same sense of near terror.
But today families are divorced from normal birth... it's something that happens to them, in a ritualized setting with ritualized procedures and ritual experts (sorry, my anthro is talking!). Birth isn't something you can do on your own. So when "birth happens" just think of the shock, fear, and stress.
I'm guessing that any future births in this family would be induced to avoid this same "tragedy"... but if they'd known that normal birth is, well, normal then maybe they would have felt less negative emotion at the time and might consider planned homebirths in the future since they would be confident that birth does, indeed, happen.
It just breaks my heart that birth has been stolen away from our culture to the extent that it can cause fear, panic, stress, and terror. I'm actually proud of this couple for "getting through it".... I
may feel like a homebirth is normal, but like an agoraphobe walking to the mailbox to get the mail for the first time ever... for them
it's a big deal. I just wish it wasn't.
(I have a mild phobia of driving... getting into a car causes a panic attack, but we live rurally and I have to drive almost every day. So I have a certain sympathy for people who find something "normal" to be "scary", and a kinship to their possibly "silly" pride in having done that "normal' act.)