Kim - I am sorry you feel I "went off on you". As I said, the internet is hard to read, sometimes. I stand by what I said, although I certainly could have said it in a nicer way. I apologize for that. I'll try to explain myself a little better.
This is not directed at you specifically, Kim, but is meant to try to get some of my thoughts out of my head.
The fact is (at least in my case) there IS blame to be spread around. I take a huge helping on myself, but there is plenty left for my DH and the docs/nurses/medical system. It just takes time to sort out the appropriate distribution. At first, I tried to convince myself that the c/s was unavoidable, but as I gained distance from it, it became clear that it was not. There were definite choices *I* made that caused it. There were definite actions (or lack thereof) on my DH's part that contributed in a big way. There were definite instances where the docs/nurses' actions contributed to the c/s.
Had I been stronger, it wouldn't have mattered that my DH wasn't. Had I been stronger, it wouldn't have mattered how much the docs/nurses pushed. Had my DH been stronger, it wouldn't have mattered that I wasn't - he could have shored me up. Had he been stronger, it wouldn't have mattered how much the docs/nurses pushed - he could have shut them down. Had the docs/nurses not pushed or been willing to step away from the medical model, it wouldn't have mattered how strong or weak DH OR I was - there would have been no pushing to resist. Everyone has some responsibility here.
I think it would be MUCH easier if the c/s had been necessary - had DS' heart rate dropped, or I had had "complications", something, anything that would make a c/s CLEARLY the only option. As it stands, I am left knowing that it wasn't the only option, or even the only option LEFT (ie, different positions hadn't been tried, the epidural hadn't been turned off (I don't believe), even forceps *could* have been tried). There will ALWAYS be the question of whether it was necessary (well, not in my case - I know it was NOT - and that just makes it a harder pill to swallow).
I *think* my emotional recovery would be much easier (but I can't know for sure) if the c/s had been TRULY necessary. I wouldn't be going round in circles, wondering 'what if I'd done XYZ'. I wouldn't be feeling resentful of my DH for his lack of strength and feeling guilty for feeling that way. I wouldn't be so damn defensive about my c/s and apprehensive about the next birth (I know there would still be apprehension, but it wouldn't be about my support system and caregivers' trustworthiness).
It is hard for me to read about other mamas who have so easily (it seems to me, from the outside - obviously I don't *know* their struggles) come to acceptance w/their c/births. Like Amy said, "I'm also at the point where I wonder if I will ever feel normal about this. " Me, too. I know I need to, and I hope that someday I will, but right now it's too fresh and feels too WRONG. I am truly happy for all the mamas who are "okay" with their c/births, and part of me is jealous. Part of me sometimes thinks, "Well, heck, maybe I should just get over it and just plan a c/s for the next one and forget about it". But I can't do that. It wouldn't be true to myself, and I know that eventually I WOULD still have to deal w/my feelings about it.
Ugh. This post seems rambly (NAKing a fussy monkey tends to interrupt my creative flow - imagine that!), and I don't know if I'm even making any sense. I just wanted to get some of that OUT of my head.
Kim - I didn't mean to imply that you had some sort of a time frame for healing. I just wanted people to realize that it's an extremely personal process and we all take our own time. Now I'm going to speak to some of your points from your post BUT it's not personal, they are just specific things that spoke to me. I promise!
First, I do know that post partum is a rocky time, and people's perceptions change. However, the facts (at least in my case) will NOT change. And, looking at the FACTS, I still believe that my c/s was unnecessary. I honestly cannot imagine EVER feeling differently. Yes, I may feel differently about it and may eventually be able to accept it for what it was instead of feeling raw and violated, but the FACTS will still be that there was no reason for this c/s. I don't know about others' experiences, but whether or not emotions/viewpoints will change, they are still valid right now - it's what people are FEELING, and should be acknowledged.
Secondly, I agree that emotions are stronger and perhaps less rational during post partum state (rational emotions? Is that an oxymoron? I hope you can find my meaning anyway). That doesn't make them any less real. Like I said in my post, I DID confront my DH (yes, I did confront him - not very well done of me) shortly after Will was born. I could probably have done it a better way (NOW, but realistically NOT then), but didn't. I NEEDED him to know I was hurting, and that he had some responsiblity for that. I NEVER blamed the c/s on him, but I wanted him to know it hurt me that he didnt' seem to care 1) that I had an unwanted c/s 2) that the c/s was unnecessary 3) that he was NOT a support for me and 4) that he didn't seem to care that he had let me down (by not advocating for me, NOT by me having the c/s).
No, he didn't respond well, but I DID get all that OUT of my mind. I think that had I not gotten it out there, I would have had HUGE problems post partum - more PPD and earlier, and there still would have been that resentment towards DH - just unvoiced and more poisonous to my heart. I would probably do it again, in the same situation. Hopefully I could be less emotional about it, but I don't know - it's a very emotional situation, and it is still hard for me to try to talk to DH about it. He just doesn't "get" it, and he doesn't have to. He DOES need to be sympathetic to my feelings, and thus far he hasn't been.
You know, I just think it's a lot easier for people outside the situation (or with more time between them and the situation) to be calm and objective. It's easy for me to forget just how much things hurt while you are going through them. I think maybe it's like the pain of labor fading, the pain of emotional trauma probably fades too, once it's been resolved.
One last thing, Kim, that I've been really thinking on. You said I was :"thinking that I [you, Kim] was being insensitive when I [you, Kim] was really being more objective." That's true. However, the two are not mutually exclusive. Like, if you went shopping for pants w/a friend and she asked if the pants made her butt look big. Objectively, yes, maybe they do, but it might still be insensitive to say so. It all depends on the way the message is framed and on your friendship. My mom could say my butt looks big and I wouldn't be as hurt/offended as if a casual acquaintance said the same thing. KWIM?
Sometimes it's easy to forget that there are real people on the other end of these messages, and to leave out that extra bit of compassion/sympathy.
Or maybe your personality is just more blunt than *I* am accustomed to. In either case - you are NOT invited to go pants shopping with me
. I know my butt is big, and do NOT need reminded - by anyone. Friends?