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The Skeptical OB - Page 2

post #21 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by lex99999 View Post

Wow, I'm really surprised and disappointed at the response that Kristine has gotten here. Some of these responses seem to have no other purpose but to shame her into not sharing her story with women considering homebirth. She should "take time to move past the pain" before sharing her story? She shouldn't give the other side of the story to women who have "done the research??" How good is this "research" that you've done if it can't withstand the truth?

 

Why is that? Why can't people who are set on homebirth accept that sometimes things go very wrong, and it is the fault of the midwife? No need to mention all the myriad things that can also go wrong in hospital- that's not the point here. The point is that Kristine's son would very likely have been born without brain damage in hospital, but due to the circumstances of his birth he was in fact born with brain damage. Women preparing for homebirth need to know that this is a real possibility. It is one of the things that strikes me most about MDC and associated sites like BWF- there is such an emphasis on "positive thinking" and not accepting any fears about childbirth, when there are plenty of reasons to be wary about birth, no matter where it takes place.


I could not agree more.  The condescension directed at women who dare disagree with the MDC status quo is horrifying.

 

 

 

 

 

post #22 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by joycnm View Post

I'm surprised that with all the information available about the poor maternity care in the US and the safety/dangerousness of homebirth that the one piece of information that would make up a woman's mind about one of the most important decisions she will probably make in her life is one other woman's story.  Would it change your mind about hospital birth if I told you some horrible story about what happens there?  I could, because I was a nurse on L&D for ten years.  I could tell you stories that would haunt you.  And if my terrible stories made someone choose not to birth in a hospital, I would really wonder why that person used one little story to decide the fate of her unborn child.  Doesn't seem to make sense.  There are horrible doctors, midwives out there.  Some work in hospitals, some in birth centers or homes.  The difference I've seen in my experience;  some of the bad outcomes that happen at home are from not doing something for the patient.  When I worked in the hospital, the bad outcomes happened from doing something terrible to that Mom &/or baby.  It disturbs me much more that people in healthcare actually harm patients with their actions rather than those that harm due to inaction. 

I said I was teetering on the edge which denotes I've done other research.  The information available about poor maternity care in hospitals in the US and it does not apply to me as I am an upper middle class white female. All the evidence of poor maternity care in the US proves a abhorrent racial and economic problem. White women from middle to upper income brackets have wonderful outcomes in the US maternity system. Her one story didn't change my mind it was just the straw that broke the camels back along with the attitude of all the people on this website that support home birth. Yes babies die in hospital too, but very rarely from preventable deaths like they do in all the home birth stories I've read. The current home birth system in the US seems fractured and unsafe. The training midwives receive seems so varied and unregulated and god forbid something does happen to my baby and they need life long care. Who's going to pay for it? Very few midwives carry malpractice insurance. It seems completely irresponsible to choose home birth to me now that I know so much! 
 

 

post #23 of 192

Up until yesterday I was still entertaining the idea of a home birth, but seriously how can I ignore the facts of the current system in the US and the vicious way in which you ladies respond to anyone who disagrees with you? You think because you pretend to say it in a nice way it's okay? I was considering home birth with a CNM, birth at Best Start Birth Center or birth at the USCD natural birth center. I figured I'd would be a safe option to hire a CNM knowing I'm 1.5 miles from the hospital if anything goes wrong, but in a true emergency that would seem very far and also I want my care provider to be held accountable if they do something horribly wrong! 

post #24 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by joycnm View Post

I'm surprised that with all the information available about the poor maternity care in the US and the safety/dangerousness of homebirth that the one piece of information that would make up a woman's mind about one of the most important decisions she will probably make in her life is one other woman's story.  Would it change your mind about hospital birth if I told you some horrible story about what happens there?  I could, because I was a nurse on L&D for ten years.  I could tell you stories that would haunt you.  And if my terrible stories made someone choose not to birth in a hospital, I would really wonder why that person used one little story to decide the fate of her unborn child.  Doesn't seem to make sense.  There are horrible doctors, midwives out there.  Some work in hospitals, some in birth centers or homes.  The difference I've seen in my experience;  some of the bad outcomes that happen at home are from not doing something for the patient.  When I worked in the hospital, the bad outcomes happened from doing something terrible to that Mom &/or baby.  It disturbs me much more that people in healthcare actually harm patients with their actions rather than those that harm due to inaction. 

 

 

This is all I was trying to say.

 

Everyone has a story to tell. Every story is important because it makes up the fabric of our collective story and I care about that. But no persons story can ever come close to serving as a definitive answer to any question about safety and birth..,

 

The safest mother, I think, that any of us could hope to be....is the one with as much information as possible, coupled with a desire and the will to advocate for herself or involve someone on her birth team who is also knowledgeable and is willing to advocate for her and her TRUE best interest. You can be in the hospital....and ill informed...and end up having a disastrous birth. You can be at home....and ill informed....and end up with the same thing. You can be WELL informed and have a bad outcome too....but if you are TRULY informed, you have the better shot of any of us no matter where you are.

 

Hysteria doesn't work. Only hearing horror stories and/or flopsy mopsy spirit-quest style birth stories about love and light and perfection in birthing.....is going to lead to emotional decision making. Fear based thinking, or thinking that is dangerously lacking in the kind of acknowledgement that allows a person to conceptualize how certain situations which arise should be handled.

 

There is a place in everyones research time for zoning out, all misty eyed, on beautiful stories and videos....but the information you seek out to actually decide where the best place is for you to birth, is based in real facts and solid info that helps you to better understand the actual process, what your body is doing, what can come up and how to handle it.

 

If you have a horror story about a breech birth turned nightmare.....don't come to the homebirth forum and say:

 

"I had a surprise breech baby and my baby was injured" 

 

If you want t obe an activist and your true aim is to educate so that what happened to you doesn't happen to another lady, come to the homebirth forum instead and say:

 

"My baby was surprise breech and I didn't realize that my midwife didn't know how to handle that. I've since discovered that breech is a variation of normal, which should be treated like this: xyz, do your homework on your MWs ladies, ask them how they handle certain situations, double check what they say against what common sense and solid facts say about the situation....don't just "connect with" a MW....dig into her and find out if she really knows her stuff"

 

THAT is activism, THAT is helpful.....THAT is turning your tragedy, into something which can serve as actual information that helps women digest tragedy in a helpful and constructive way and decide if she thinks she has what it takes to feel responsible for situations like that...instead of making them either a) fearful and dismissive of your story, or b) fearful and turning to the hospital out of fear, no more educated, no more prepared to properly advocate for themselves and ensure they are getting the best care possible.

 

There is a sea of negative outcome stories out there. If you want to join the chorus of voices, shouting in agony over what went wrong with your birth....you can do that and no one, NO ONE will blame you. If you want to shrink away from the internet and never speak of what happened to you...that's fine, too, it's not your responsibility to educate other women if you don't want to.

 

But if your desire is to reach out and warn other women...you have to do that responsibly and with REAL information that can help them. If you are a voice in the sea of voices, talking about the fact that your birth went wrong...many women will feel very sad from you..and then will wall your voice off from themselves, because they don't want to be filled with fear. If you want to reach out, do it with a voice and with information that makes a woman ask MORE questions "what would I have done...does my midwife know what to do if THAT happens??" - that is how you will educate. THAT is how you will change minds and save women, possibly, from suffering your same tragedy.


Edited by BroodyWoodsgal - 11/19/11 at 4:00pm
post #25 of 192

 . .


Edited by KmAndrews - 1/2/12 at 4:53pm
post #26 of 192

People are going to get defensive when someone comes into a home birth forum and every single post the person has is bashing out of hospital midwives and home birth.

post #27 of 192

 . . .


Edited by KmAndrews - 1/2/12 at 4:53pm
post #28 of 192

 . . .


Edited by KmAndrews - 1/2/12 at 4:54pm
post #29 of 192

 . . .


Edited by KmAndrews - 1/2/12 at 4:53pm
post #30 of 192

I continue to be amazed that women who have a difficult time with homebirth but who persevere are given a big round of "you go mama!" Women who are having doubts about whether or not to go through with homebirth are given the utmost encouragement to talk things over with their midwives and told lots of stories about how homebirths have gone better than hospital births for posters here.

 

But Kristine's very measured comments about being aware of the risks and the fact that an uninsured midwife can't be sued to help care for a disabled child are met with such mistrust and condescension! If Kristine is "bashing" midwives and homebirth, is every woman with a good story to tell now "worshipping" midwives and homebirth? After all, if you can't trust Kristine's motives, why should you trust everyone else's? If Kristine should go away until she has "processed" her hurt and grief, should every woman with a good story to tell go away until she has "processed" her birth high? 

 

This forum is about homebirth. I haven't been able to find it written anywhere that stories about homebirth gone wrong or the dangers of homebirth are forbidden. If only the positive stories are allowed to stand, and negative stories are met with a chorus of shaming responses telling the poster to go away, how is anyone supposed to get a sense of the possible drawbacks? Or is this forum meant to be more of a "positive thoughts only" place?

post #31 of 192

I haven't been a member as long as some, but, for the record, I haven't seen much (almost nothing, really) in the way of people refusing to admit anything can go wrong with a midwife.  The almost universal position on this site seems to be what AverysMomma has been saying right down the line--that abuse and tragedy occur wherever you go.  The statistics have been hashed out elsewhere.  I am one who wished for a birth center birth, was transferred to the hospital, and extensively mauled there--left with a terrible case of PTSD.  And, though I understand that it is true that genetic disabilities and injuries due to negligence are different, they are not SO different, at least in the general public's attitude to our children whom we love.  My sweet little boy has Down syndrome, and I found absolutely nothing offensive in anything AverysMomma said.

post #32 of 192

My research has uncovered a horrible disparity in the maternity care outcomes of poor, minority women versus the outcomes of white middle and upper class women. The outcomes of white women and their babies in this country is great! How come when poor maternity care is brought up no one here ever says black women's maternal mortality rate in the US is like 36/100,000 while white women's is like 9/100,000. If you're a white woman living above the poverty line you and your babies can get great care and are very safe in the hospital maternity system. All this time I fed into the idea the statistics applied to me and when I started researching it made me really upset I wasn't told the whole truth. How can we help all women have safe births if we don't admit this isn't a problem for all women across the board. I became a doula because I believed natural birth and home birth were actually safer. I was raised to believe this and thought all of my life I would have a home birth. Then I found the Skeptical OB who lead me to women's stories like KmAndrews and the truth about the current home birth midwifery system in the US. I was shocked to discover the statistics didn't apply to me and that there were midwives practicing who were not trained. I didn't know the difference between a lay midwife, a CPM and a CNM before. I have learned so much information which has not only helped me decide how I will birth my own children, but also lit a fire in me to help the women who really need help in this country! I'm thankful for websites that give people another view on home birth. I don't agree with the most extreme of the views on either side of the issue, but to make choices you have to have the whole picture! KmAndrewsand her son's experience was only the most recent of many that have raised big red flags to me. 

post #33 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by lex99999 View Post
.

 

But Kristine's very measured comments about being aware of the risks and the fact that an uninsured midwife can't be sued to help care for a disabled child are met with such mistrust and condescension! 



This is one of the biggest issues I have with home birth midwives in the US today. Who does take care of the children when your care provider doesn't carry malpractice insurance. Do parents think about this when they hire a home birth midwife? I never thought about it until I read stories like Kristine's! I would certainly never hire a midwife who doesn't carry insurance now and I think that means Kristine and women like her are making a difference! 

post #34 of 192

I gotta say, that some of the comments here are exactly why HB'ers are seen as dismissive and unwilling to see anyones humanity but their own. 

 

My grandmother delivered me in a hospital (RN and midwife)

My mother was delivered by my great-grandma at home (lay midwife at the time)

My grandma was born unassisted at home. 

 

I come from a line of women who did it old school. That said, not a one of them would EVER try to downplay the risks we all take when we go the completely natural route. And to try to dismiss someones tragedy and silence her because it besmirches NCB is disgusting. 

The fact that "babies die every day" has nothing to do with a messup that hurt this woman and her family. Why should homebirth or NCB be judge by its own merits when praising it but not when criticizing it? That is an untruthful and unjust way to attack a grieving parent and I gotta say a HUGE part of the problem in the ncb community. Natural Childbirth is Not more important than the people it serves. It isn't a diety and it isn't an end to all means. People matter More. 

post #35 of 192

However, all that the pp said that went wrong was that she used midwives.  Why is that, specifically?  There are many women that have used midwives for posterior babies, breech babies, vertex babies, and have not had the outcome that she did.  What specifically did her midwvies do wrong to cause her son to have CP?  Just saying they are midwives is not enough.

 

So, the point is, something like that could have happened to anyone, anywhere.  If he had been born at a hospital with a similar outcome, would she post around and warn women not to have a hospital birth?

post #36 of 192



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KmAndrews View Post

Posterior was NOT the cause . . . it was just information.  I am not sure why that is confusing people. I repeat Posterior was NOT the cause.  Never said it was. 



 

Then what specifically was the cause? You said midwives, but what about the midwives? Did they fail to monitor heart tones? Did they fail to have proper resuscitation equipment available? Did they fail to see a cord prolapse? What exactly did they do wrong? Just existing as a midwife was not the cause.

 

I am asking because I think this piece of information is what women need to know so they can have another piece of information to use to judge any health care provider offering birth cervices.

 

I am asking because I believe you that there are unqualified home birth midwives out there. I asked some pretty hard and detailed questions to all of the midwives I interviewed in my area and I was just shocked by some of the unsafe answers that they gave.

 

Um, you mean if I was bleeding from A PPH all you would do is call 911 and wait? Nope, not birthing with you!

 

Um, you don't carry basic resuscitation equipment or a doppler for monitoring heart tones because in your experience with super midwife skills you have never seen anyone have an issue that required their use? I'm running from you and telling everyone I know that you are not safe.

 

Um, your advise to an over weight pregnant woman is to go on weight watchers, which you just so happen to be able to sell me materials for, so that I don't gain any weight and you think to much protein is the cause of all bad birth outcomes? How are you even a licensed midwife in this state?

 

This is he kind of thing that I am interested in hearing form you about your experience, so I can take my own lesson from it. How did your midwives screw up? What did they fail to do? What did they fail to recognize?

post #37 of 192

I am not directing this at the OP, but at the general conversation around "true risks of home birth."

 

I think one thing that many moms seem to not want to recognize, that home birth advocates fail to vocalize, is that one of the main differences between choosing a hospital birth and a home birth is who carries the responsibility.

 

When you choose to birth in a hospital you are choosing to turn over responsibility for your birth outcome to your doctor or midwife. Their practice comes with the assumption of a certain level of training and experience, strict protocols, on site big time medical backup, and all kinds of liability insurance to cover everyone butt should things go badly. It comes with the illusion of safety, the illusion of no matter what goes wrong, it will all turn out OK. Nobody will ever question your decision to birth there. Do babies die in this environment? Yes. Are babies born with preventable birth injuries in this environment? Yes.

 

When you choose a home birth you are choosing to accept responsibility for your own birth outcome. You have to choose from a wide variety of types of midwives with a wide variety of knowledge and experience. You can not assume anything about the person you hire. A midwifes practice will come with a wide range of protocols, often loose, medical back up is off site and sometimes not easily accessed. I have never met a midwife with liability insurance, but I'm sure there are some out there. Home birth comes with the assumption of risk. If something goes badly, everyone will blame you for being reckless. Do babies die in this environment? Yes. Are babies born with preventable birth injuries in this environment? Yes.

 

I also think that we need to accept that all pregnancies are not going to result in healthy, live babies. It's just not the way it works. No midwife, no doctor can grantee that. Birth does not come with grantees. Everyone involved can do everything right, and still everything can go wrong.

 

 

 

post #38 of 192

For the life of me, I cannot imagine how it is that anyone coming to this thread talking about how we are downplaying risks and telling Kristine that her story "doesn't count for anything" is reading those messages in the posts that have been put up by myself and others thus far.

 

 

Nobody on this thread is "protecting a perfect image of danger-less ncb at any and all costs" - we are simply stating the truth....which is:

 

A sad story told by a mother who believes that something about her birth caused her child to suffer a permanent, serious injury....is really not helpful to anyone who is trying figure out if homebirth is for them, unless the story comes with information that can help us in screening our own midwives or helps us to decide that there are certain situations/positions/variations we are NOT comfortable dealing with at home.

 

But Kristine didn't do that. I'm really not trying to pick on her at all....I'm merely trying to point out that her first eight or ten posts after joining this forum recently, were almost ALL in the homebirth forum and ALL almost exactly the same. Interjecting in conversations that were not asking for sad stories at all (but were asking for information on certain things, one woman asking for help in calming her nerves).....and saying(paraphrasing):

 

"I wouldn't homebirth if I were you. My son is permanently disabled because I chose to homebirth him, biggest mistake I ever made"

 

Then, on the thread of a woman who had been trying desperately to figure out how she was going to make her HBAC happen after she realized the midwives she originally chose were crappy....she was trying to get this figured out, birth professionals were trying to give her options and piece the whole thing together...it's the kind of thread that makes me happy to be a part of MDC....where a woman can come and people will help her figure out safe ways to make the birth she chooses to have, possible.

 

One midwife offered to help her and said that if she would be willing to travel, they could put together a hotel birth....something a lot of women in different situations find themselves having to consider. But Kristine thinks that is gross. So she said(direct quote):

 

"That sounds INCREDIBLY unsanitary.  I really hope you are joking."

 

 

She is not here to support. She is not here to be helpful. She is not here for any other reason, than she is hurt and angry. She has been making the same post over and over again.....NO information, NO facts......just "My baby was posterior, I chose homebirth, he has CP, don't give birth at home". <-- not freaking helpful. Not okay, per the Homebirth TOU. Period.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KmAndrews View Post

Posterior was NOT the cause . . . it was just information.  I am not sure why that is confusing people. I repeat Posterior was NOT the cause.  Never said it was. 



Really? I'm confused:

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KmAndrews View Post

My son was posterior, the midwives brushed it off.  It was a very long traumatic birth. He was injured and asphyxiated and now has to spend his life crippled by Cerebral Palsy.  www.weareabel.org    I am obviously extremely concerned about the safety of midwifery and would give anything to go back and have a C section.  A little bit of discomfort is no comparison to the lifetime of struggle that faces my son.

 

-Kristine



Multiple times you have posted that piece of information......that piece of information ALONE.....as if it was somehow a cause of your sons injury.

 

 

Again, I'm not trying to pick on you and I AM completely sympathetic to your sitaution and heartbroken for you, as everyone else is, that things took this turn in your life. But do you understand how what you are doing, the way you are posting about this, is not helpful? You say you want to protect other women from your fate...well, you can't do that if you dont have information.

 

Knowledge is power. Fear is crippling. Filling people with knowledge, is filling people with the power to choose wisely. Filling people with fear and sadness does not empower them.

 

 

Anyway. I'm getting the feeling that poeple aren't even reading posts anymore. I honestly don't know how anyone could think that anyone here is trying to ignore the dangers that can visit you in birth or pretend that it's all roses. No one has done or said anything like that here.

 

 

As for those of you who have stated that you've "done your research" and "honestly are not coming into contact with stories like Kristines or any kind of cautionary stories at all" - I would humbly and gently suggest, that you need to revisit the definition of research. In the research I did and continue to do over the last five years of my pregnant/birthing/mothering life.....I have had to WADE THROUGH negative stories...at certain points ignoring whole websites, chapters of books and topics of conversation with people IRL, because I was too close to my birthing time to let things like that into my space. I have absolutely no idea how ANYONE who is doing actual, in depth research on the merits of home vs. hospital birth and birth safety in general, can possibly be ignorant to the vast ocean of birth horror stories and "things that can go wrong" on the web, in books and in anecdotal situations in real life. That is shocking to me and, honestly, makes me more concerned than anything else on this thread.

post #39 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbbieB View Post

I am not directing this at the OP, but at the general conversation around "true risks of home birth."

 

I think one thing that many moms seem to not want to recognize, that home birth advocates fail to vocalize, is that one of the main differences between choosing a hospital birth and a home birth is who carries the responsibility.

 

When you choose to birth in a hospital you are choosing to turn over responsibility for your birth outcome to your doctor or midwife. Their practice comes with the assumption of a certain level of training and experience, strict protocols, on site big time medical backup, and all kinds of liability insurance to cover everyone butt should things go badly. It comes with the illusion of safety, the illusion of no matter what goes wrong, it will all turn out OK. Nobody will ever question your decision to birth there. Do babies die in this environment? Yes. Are babies born with preventable birth injuries in this environment? Yes.

 

When you choose a home birth you are choosing to accept responsibility for your own birth outcome. You have to choose from a wide variety of types of midwives with a wide variety of knowledge and experience. You can not assume anything about the person you hire. A midwifes practice will come with a wide range of protocols, often loose, medical back up is off site and sometimes not easily accessed. I have never met a midwife with liability insurance, but I'm sure there are some out there. Home birth comes with the assumption of risk. If something goes badly, everyone will blame you for being reckless. Do babies die in this environment? Yes. Are babies born with preventable birth injuries in this environment? Yes.

 

I also think that we need to accept that all pregnancies are not going to result in healthy, live babies. It's just not the way it works. No midwife, no doctor can grantee that. Birth does not come with grantees. Everyone involved can do everything right, and still everything can go wrong.

 

 

 


clap.gif Now please, someone tell me that this is an example of "protecting the deity that is homebirth at any cost" - NO, this is the general view of the average homebirther on this site.

 

post #40 of 192

Averysmomma, I honestly think people come here believing that it's all one sided and people are being shut down when they voice the otherside.  And it's all just cause some sort of afternoon fun for them to argue.

 

From what I have gathered here on MDC

 

There are some people that advocate HB as though it's the end all be all.

Some that realize it's not.

Those that are truly aware of the risks on both sides and choose by what is best for them.

Others that feel the risk is too great not to have a team of OB's by their side.

 

I wanted a homebirth for my last one, however DH felt that he would not be comfortable with it because DD2 was high risk, and just like DD1 she had the cord wrapped around her neck.  Both girls heart rate fell dangerously throughout labor and they were tossing me around from sitting to kneeling to being on my side continuously to get the heart rate back up. From my experiences I will birth in a hospital setting.  I live in a decent sized city and the hospital is too far for me to feel comfortable. 

 

I would never tell someone not to do something because of my experiences.  If they asked my my opinion I would suggest they see both an OB and a Midwife and decide from there.  Find out if they are at high risk and what they can do themselves to promote a good outcome.  Unless there is honest diregard by your OB or Midwife anything that happens in life cannot be fully controlled.  I applaud all forms of birth, all mothers that carried their babies and made a decision on how they would come to this world that best suited the situation.  And I'm saddened by that terrible things that have happened due to negligence.  I also feel for those who put all their trust in someone other than themselves.  Why give up all control?  I see placing your trust in an OB no different than placing your trust in a Midwife and just expecting all will turn out great because of their credentials. 

 

The blame game needs to stop and the education of taking control of your own health needs to start. 

 

 

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