[QUOTE=Lkg4dmcrc]This is a very helpful thread. I have been reading and writing tons and it surprises me how much I haven't thought about yet and still need to work on. These are especially helpful and I wonder how you do take insensitive comments and not internalize them? Or "question the "dramatized" birth experience that we are steeped in from little on...whether it is the screaming woman or the woman bathed in golden light with her baby sliding out into the waiting arms of her partner
I can try and expand on what I mean, and maybe it will help. I should say that I dont' think c-sections have to be inherently traumatic. Sometimes they are necessary and are done sensitively. This just wasn't the case with me.....
Insensitive comments: Overtime, I just came to realize that the comments people make are about their agendas, not your experience. And that oftentimes, when something happens that is so upsetting to someone else, people just don't want to deal with it/hear about it. They feel the need to say something, but very seldom think about the underlying assumptions.
I remember an old friend saying upon hearing about my birth experience, "Well, maybe you were paying off some kharmic debt." What he meant by this was that I had done something awful in a prior life and therefore deserved to have to pay for it in this one with a horrible experience. Hmmmmm, um, no. At the time he said it, I was so steeped in thinking I somehow deserved what happened to me, that I was just a sucker for this kind of crap. I think this stemmed from really trying to have more control over what happened to me than I really did or could have, which translates into taking responsibility for things that were just not within my ability to impact, e.g., the midwife from hell was on and was pissed, I was delivering on a holiday, etc.
Or there was the woman I met while breastfeeding at a restaurant with my brand new baby. Agenda, she felt really isolated in the conservative community we were both living in at the time, and wanted desperately to bond with soemone she perceived to be "like her." She excitedly came up to me and said something along the lines of, "It is so great to see someone else breastfeeding in public. Don't you think natural babies do so much better. People who have drugs or c-sections, I just don't get it." Well actually strange woman I did have a c-section and am really struggling with it. She gave me her number, and I never called her.
Then there is the infamous, "Well you have a healthyl baby, that is all that matters." Because so many c-sections aren't really about the baby's health, this comment is just so infuriating. It is like having your foot cut off for a bunion, and someone saying, "Well at least you have the other foot." Well actually, I would have preferred both feet thanks. Well actually, I would have preferred a healthy baby and a healthy mind and body, thanks. Agenda, I guess I just think that people don't know how to handle the trauma of the topic and so say stupid things. If you stop expecting the average person to understand, you are less likely to take their stupid comments to heart.
As far as the romanticized birth thing.......I think an ecstatic birth is possible, but I question the wisdom of assuming that this is the only worthy outcome or way of getting to a "good" birth. For example, some people talk about how great/inspirational their partner was, this was not my experience. I think we both did the best we could, under very trying circumstances. If I hold him up to a romantic ideal, he falls short. If I see him as a poor guy that watched someone he loved be tortured and felt helpless, well, I think I can be a little more understanding. Or there is a good friend of mine who raved about her birth center experience, and I was soooo envious. Over time, it comes out that she had a lot of ups and downs in her birthing road as well, but didn't feel comfortable talking about it initially. This only came out later.
At the end of the day, you have to get from point A to point B, some people take the scenic road, some people take the highway. I think I've come to realize, I am just happy not to crash on this one. I know this may sound horrible to some people, but I just want my VBAC to be about feeling respected as a human being. This might seem like a low goal for people, but for me it is about setting a goal I think is possible, and feeling a sense of accomplishment based on that. Only you really ultimately know the best way to get there for you, the Birth Channel doesn't have a clue!!!
Don't know if any of this makes sense, but there ya' go.