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Pro-homebirth risk ethics - Page 3

post #41 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheacoby
My issue is that very few women are actually making informed choices. Do all the many many women who choose not to breastfeed really know what they are choosing? The same question can be asked about hospital births. Why do a lot of women feel safer in the hospital, why do many believe the hospital is safer? Why do so many women let doctors choose for them?
If we didn't have readily available formula would it still be ethical for women to decide not to breastfeed eventhough it would be very detrimental/deadly to their babies, would it still be a matter of choice? Is it ethical to have massed produced artificial baby food?
I think that this is more for the breastfeeding forum, but I'll bite.

I agree that information should be available so everyone can make an informed choice. Is it ethical to mass produce formula? I don't know, is it ethical to mass produce junk food?

In terms of the US, I don't think it's generally so detrimental or deadly to FF. I agree that there are risks, and even if ABM wasn't mass produced and ti were more difficult for women to choose not to breastfeed it is still their body and their choice. Ideally women would want to breastfeed, there wouldn't be social stigma, past abuse, going back to work 1 week postpartum, but this is not the way the world is. Poverty prevents women from even establishing a breastfeeding relationship.

Honestly, the real ethics issue lies how we treat women in society, not what women choose to do with their bodies or how they choose to raise their children.
post #42 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by WC_hapamama
I agree with AllyRae.

I'm not against homebirth, but for myself I have chosen hospital births. I know the benefits and risks of all of the procedures that my OB/GYN might want to do on me or my child. It's called informed consent people.

I think that people who don't look at the benefits vs risks of any issue involving their health is ignorant, a fool perhaps, but immoral? That's taking it a bit too far.

Now breastfeeding... when does breastfeeding become too much to ask? Two of my three current children have food allergies, and when I breastfed my youngest, I had to cut several foods out of my diet for 18 months. I've talked to other women in similar situations who are on diets of 5 foods, for example rice, sweet potatoes, chicken, pears and apples. Can you imagine being on a diet like that for 2 years? Can such a limited diet be healthy for a breastfeeding mother for such an extended period of time? Often in situations like this, many vitamins are also off limits as they can be made from allergenic items.

Is it immoral to formula feed, using an elemental formula that the baby can tolerate, in the interest of Mom's health? I don't think so.
Breastfeeding becomes too much to ask when the mother does not want to do it. Period. You don't need a reason everyone here will understand or support.

I think that even beginning to discuss formula feeding as immoral, aside from Nestle's tactics, the corporate issues etc., is pretty scary to me.

Soon we will be discussing how immoral it is for me to let my dd go to a restaurant and order french fries or to let her eat a big spoonful of ice cream before breakfast. I'm not equating letting my child have junk food with formula feeding, I just think calling FF immoral is dangerous territory.

If we all work out the ethics here, will we be moving on to Activism to enforce these ethics on women's bodies? Or will we just judge them silently (or here on the boards) for their horrendous morals?
post #43 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamma Mia
Honestly, the real ethics issue lies how we treat women in society
This is true. Our birth culture is a true reflection of this.
post #44 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamma Mia
If we all work out the ethics here, will we be moving on to Activism to enforce these ethics on women's bodies? Or will we just judge them silently (or here on the boards) for their horrendous morals?
Once more- I am not at all saying that my ethics or anyone elses' should be enforced on anyone.

I think that I am sensing that many here are uncomfortable with the fact that like it or not, things can be ethical or unethical. Sometimes I choose to do things that might be unethical (like buying things from China when Chinese policy goes against my ethics)

I judge people. Sometimes silently, sometimes not. I don't have a problem with that.

-Angela
post #45 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamma Mia
If we all work out the ethics here, will we be moving on to Activism to enforce these ethics on women's bodies? Or will we just judge them silently (or here on the boards) for their horrendous morals?
I really don't think anyone here is saying we should legislate anything. The thought is actually horrid. Informing women though is an excellent idea, then women will actually have a choice of informed consent. Working to change the unethical aspects of managed pregnancy/labor/birth is a good idea and worthy of discussion (especially at a place like MDC).
post #46 of 181
Having a baby at home and having a baby in the hospital represents two polarities of mindsets in our culture.

Having a baby at home (USUALLY) represents a mindset that childbirth is not an illness, but a culmination of a process that has evolved over time to continue to bring life into the world. It is a peak experience in a woman's reproductive life. People who genuinely prefer homebirth should already make peace with the fact that there are no guarantees in life. Usually a mother who chooses homebirth is educated and takes responsibility for the outcome and for the choices she has made.

The mother who chooses to give birth in a hospital (USUALLY) wants the best that modern medicine can give her in the form of pain relief, technology, and trained personnel. Many women feel safe in this environment with all of the attention given to them with the machines, tubes, staff, drugs, internal examinations, paper signing and note taking. Many doctors and nurses will push procedures on mothers in labor saying, "It is the best thing for your baby!", -OR- "Don't you care about your baby?", -OR- doctors love to play the hero by saying, "If you let me - [fill in with your favorite intervention/procedure], - I can guarantee you a perfect baby!"

DO NOT DENY IT! I have heard this veiled threat many times from a doctor while a mother is having a difficult labor.

Years ago, I remember my mother's contemporaries staying in the hospital for a week, so it was almost like a vacation to lay in bed for a week and be waited on. Now, there is a shorter stay in the hospital, and many women go home to be alone without a spouse to help or even their own mother or MIL to help since everyone needs to work.

So women have been trained to look to the best in technology and science to have their babies, and since many things in our everyday lives are influenced by techonology and science, we tend to think it has our best interests at heart.

According to author Robin Davis-Floyd, women who have self-actualized themselves on the career track, tend not to need to self-actualize through the birth process and the mommy track.

Therefore these women instinctively trust people who work in those fields, and the vestments they wear and the things they do to them with their tools and drugs.

I think a woman should birth where she feels safest, as any mammal does.
post #47 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wugmama
BTW, hospital birth with midwives the first time, plannng a January homebirth the second time -so I've been on both sides of the fence.
~Tracy
Not till after January!

Good luck with that choice.
post #48 of 181
slightly OT:
Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice
Not till after January!

Good luck with that choice.
I thought I was "pro homebirth" when I chose to pursue a homebirth!! with my second.

After my ds's birth........I felt like I had trancended to a space unknown...........something akin to the gulf between womanhood---and motherhood. I wasn't "pro homebirth"...I just could not really imagine pursuing any birth that was not a natural, spontanious event.

Wugmama, I too wish you good luck...I think you'll have an amazing experience!

alegna, I really appriciate this thread.....I have been pondering it all day, and I've tried to write a few posts to this thread, but I just don't know what to say or where to begin or end!

Is it ethical to get doped up at the germy hospital because we're scared of having babies?
Short answer: no.

Is it ethical to live in a place with dirty air? Is it ethical to eat mercury-laden tuna?
Short answer: no.

.......but do I have another choice? Sometimes...and only if I know there's a problem with my air or tuna. AND I NEVER MADE THE AIR OR FISH DIRTY IN THE FIRST PLACE, yet I have the ethical responsibilty.

I should just hook up the popcorn-munching icon, because I am just merping around, not adding anything useful or insightful to this unusual thread...

:
post #49 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyshoes
After my ds's birth........I felt like I had trancended to a space unknown...........something akin to the gulf between womanhood---and motherhood. I wasn't "pro homebirth"...I just could not really imagine pursuing any birth that was not a natural, spontanious event.

Wugmama, I too wish you good luck...I think you'll have an amazing experience!

alegna, I really appriciate this thread.....I have been pondering it all day, and I've tried to write a few posts to this thread, but I just don't know what to say or where to begin or end!

Is it ethical to get doped up at the germy hospital because we're scared of having babies?
Short answer: no.

Is it ethical to live in a place with dirty air? Is it ethical to eat mercury-laden tuna?
Short answer: no.

.......but do I have another choice? Sometimes...and only if I know there's a problem with my air or tuna. AND I NEVER MADE THE AIR OR FISH DIRTY IN THE FIRST PLACE, yet I have the ethical responsibilty.

I should just hook up the popcorn-munching icon, because I am just merping around, not adding anything useful or insightful to this unusual thread...

:


You get it! There's not an easy answer (there rarely is with ethical questions) Ethics is like a huge jigsaw puzzle and you don't have the picture on the box. BUT just because you don't have the picture, doesn't mean that there isn't a right way to put the puzzle together.

I think the more we discuss this the more clear it becomes that this issue has several facets:

1. Yes, there can be an ethical or unethical decision (sorry if you don't like to hear that- I'll be happy to visit another thread and explain why there is such a creature)

2. You must know that there IS another choice in order to be able to weigh the ethical questions.

3. You must have a great deal of information on the choices in order to decide what the ethical decision is.

4. Yes, there are many many variables, and altering a seemingly minor variable can change a decision from the ethical choice to an unethical choice.

Continue discussion.

(So as not to bog us down, I would like to ask that discussion of whether or not something can be unethical be left alone on this thread for now, for the sake of argument we're assuming that one can decide the ethics of a situation)

DISCLAIMER- anyone who still doesn't get it- no one here is suggesting making laws or rules limiting anyone's choices. Got it? No one is telling you what you HAVE to do. We are simply discussing what seems to be an ethical choice. You are free to disagree on what is ethical for your situation and you are free to choose an unethical choice.

-Angela
post #50 of 181
"Let's factor in a woman's intuition, Mamas, when discussing this, and have respect for that. " Beansavi
--Such a good point!

I`m trying to stay out of this, b/c I can truly see both sides of it and have nothing much to add. I used to be totally unable to comprehend why every woman wouldn`t want a homebirth. Then after some life and death experience & 3 kids, I realized that I never cared that much about me and my "perfect" birth experience, I just wanted the most gentle beginning for my child. This thread seems to be about selfish and/or ignorant mamas who want the easy way for themselves in a hospital, even if their baby is hurt. Lets be realistic, iatrogenic injuries to babies do happen in hospitals probably more than at home, but the vast majority of babies born every day in hospitals do fine and go home with their parents. Some mamas choose the hospital for their babies to be as safe as possible, having a NICU right there matters to them. Even people who are different from us think they are doing the best for their kids, most of the time.
post #51 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by liseux
Some mamas choose the hospital for their babies to be as safe as possible, having a NICU right there matters to them. Even people who are different from us think they are doing the best for their kids, most of the time.
True, this is WHY they choose hospitals, however this is usually done with faulty logic as they don't have all the information (or choose to disregard the information)

-Angela
post #52 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice
Many doctors and nurses will push procedures on mothers in labor saying, "It is the best thing for your baby!", -OR- "Don't you care about your baby?", -OR- doctors love to play the hero by saying, "If you let me - [fill in with your favorite intervention/procedure], - I can guarantee you a perfect baby!"

DO NOT DENY IT! I have heard this veiled threat many times from a doctor while a mother is having a difficult labor.
This is not true.

I've had 3 hospital births (4th coming up in December). I've dealt with a total of 3 different OBs and more L&D nurses than I can remember. None of them ever told me such a thing.
post #53 of 181

Ethics v. morality

I think we'll have a more constructive conversation if we all have a clear understanding about the differences between ethics and morality.

Ethics are something every medical or midwifery organization (that I know of) have and discusses. Ethics are guidelines to action. A good ethic it's probably safe to assume most health care workers subscribe to is "First, do no harm." Whether their actions are in line with that ethic is what decides whether their actions are ethical.

An example. A person who says they have a good work ethic, or a good work ethic as a goal, would probably try to put lots of energy into work, to show up on time and well dressed etc. Consistently showing up late, being distracted at work, or having a slovenly appearance would be unethical given their stated ethical code. Is showing up late immoral? That's a whole 'nother issue.

Morality has to do with ultimate and intrinsic good or evil. It has to do with religion, with God(s), and with holy wars. Morality is up to each person to decide (or to take from their God[s]), and I believe has no place in this discussion. Ethics is a matter of consistency between stated goals and actions. Ethics can be discussed constructively and objectively. Morality, since it generally comes from or pertains to one's religious views, is not something I would consider useful or constructive to discuss.

So I hope we can continue to discuss whether the medically unnecessary risks associated with hospital birth or elective cesarean are ethical, given the inferred context of the ethic of "first, do no harm" (or whatever other ethical stance someone wishes to propose or discuss - I think it would be an interesting question to ponder "under what ethical guidelines are elective cesareans ethical?"). Ethics are, as has been previously stated, complicated and highly nuanced, and a ripe topic for discussion. Medical organizations usually have an entire comittee or board just devoted to medical ethics. But never, in my experience, to morality. I hope we can learn from them.

I also hope we can also all remember that in this discussion on ethics, we are not discussing limiting choices. Just the ethical ramifications of certain choices.
post #54 of 181
I agree with the definition of ethics and I`m glad it was added. I think many unethical things happen in hospitals, but the act of going to a hospital in itself is not unethical. Circumcision is a perfect example of something unethical happening in a hospital, so is giving a new mom formula samples. These are choices that should go away because they are unethical. In birth its more tricky, doing a c/s or a huge episiotomy without a good reason is not ethical, but its complicated by fear of lawsuits and doctors feeling they should err on the side of action, rather than inaction.
post #55 of 181

Regarding the Breastfeeding "Ethics" Spoken of Before

Hey, I just wanted to throw out there that, although we have only had formula for about 6o+ years, women have had wetnurses OR breastfed each others babies since the dawn of man.

Two of my closest friends are from a family that originates from the Middle East and our kids were born within months of each other. One of my friends had low milk supply, so when we hung out I would nurse her kid after she ran out and "top her off".

The other friend also had very large nipples and a tiny baby who could not open her mouth very wide. When she was first born, we were trying to figure out if the nipple size was the issue. So, I nursed her baby on my breast and she was still fussy-so we figured it out that it wasn't the size of the nip, just the baby.

In Middle Easern culture, our children cannot marry when they grow up because they are now considered "Milk Siblings".

Isn't that beautiful?!!! Nobody was "unethical" for introducing another milk source, etc. and experimenting outside of Mama...
post #56 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna
This is an interesting bit as I have wondered if perhaps in the future insurance companies will jump on the homebirth wagon as it is so much cheaper for them.

Personally I think homebirth should be the standard of care and you should need special approval from your insurance co. to have a HOSPITAL birth if anything.

-Angela
I've had all 3 of my babies at home and I definitely don't agree with that. The bottom line is that women need to birth where they are most comfortable. If women KNEW more about the risks of hospital birth and more about what interventions do and more about how some in-hospital care providers harm their body for convenience sake, they may not feel as comfortable at the hospital. But feeling uncomfortable or scared in your birthing environment certainly would inhibit the birthing process.
post #57 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamma Mia

Honestly, the real ethics issue lies how we treat women in society, not what women choose to do with their bodies or how they choose to raise their children.
post #58 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna
Once more- I am not at all saying that my ethics or anyone elses' should be enforced on anyone.

I think that I am sensing that many here are uncomfortable with the fact that like it or not, things can be ethical or unethical. Sometimes I choose to do things that might be unethical (like buying things from China when Chinese policy goes against my ethics)

I judge people. Sometimes silently, sometimes not. I don't have a problem with that.

-Angela
But not everyone has the same moral code or considers the same things ethical or unethical.
post #59 of 181
...and that is the big "dilemma" the world has dealt with since the dawn of man. What problems arise when we impose our ethics on someone else? How does that compare to giving them ethical freedom and some do wrong?
post #60 of 181
I think to focus needs to be shifted. The ethical blunder lies within the hands of the medical profession who LIE to women.
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