Supporting Women in All Birthing Choices…Is It Possible?
Written by January Harshe.
It has taken me about a year and a half of blogging to get to a place that I feel I am really doing this and that others see it too. I’ve always had this vision…to passionately share my views about childbirth and inform woman they have choices in how they birth, but not alienate anyone.
This is not done anywhere. You have a few natural birthing communities that freak out at women who have interventions or cesarean sections. They exclaim the mother was not patient enough, strong enough or educated. When a mother shares a loss, they are shunned. Not always because other women want to hurt a loss mom, but because their own fears of loss in childbirth cause them to do so. Then you have ‘mainstream’ communities (for lack of a better term) that say VBACing is dangerous! That if a mother cared for her child she would never birth at home and that home birth is for hippies.
There is a lack of knowledge, understanding and support on both sides. It has taken time, and a lot of criticism on all sides, but I think I am here. I think we are here. I think there is finally a true Birth Without Fear COMMUNITY coming together. A place where we all want to inform women that yes, they have choices in their births! A place that women can get support in the informed choices they do make, even if different from what we would do. A place ALL women can share their stories.
That is not becoming mainstream. That is not people pleasing. That is amazing! On our private support group, a woman announced tonight that she decided to have a repeat cesarean section and was on the way to the hospital to do so. Instead of other women asking her why or criticizing, she has received nothing but an out pour of love, understanding and support. Women share they are educated and informed and having a home birth and even if other women wouldn’t do that, they get support and understanding.
That is amazing.
I’ve had this vision since I started BWF. I have evolved. I have let my guard down. I have been open and communicated more. I have worked on finding a way to not lose my passion or my opinions, but also have more balance. To also support all women. Not every post I do will be for everyone. Not everyone will agree with every post I write or birth story I share. However, there is something for everyone.
I can and will still share different births from breech, to home twin births, to unassisted birth, to midwife assisted home or birth center birth, to hospital birth with midwives or doctors, to cesarean birth. No matter what I feel is best for me (or even you), I still think all birth should be celebrated. I believe all women should be supported.
We can share information, we can educate, we can inform women that they actually have choices. Then we support. When a woman is in labor and gives birth, why criticize? Why say, ‘How dare you share this?!’. It’s done. Having a child is a blessing. A pure and incredible blessing and no kind of birth takes that away.
A woman is beginning her motherhood and it should begin with love all around her. If a woman has a birth she sees as traumatic, no matter what kind of birth it is, give her support. If a woman chooses a different path that you would, remember it is HER journey. When you want to put a woman down, remember that if you want her to come to you with questions, be the person she wants to receive answers from.