Tag Archives: home birth

The Case for Home Birth

24 Mar

A home birth is the best place for a calm birth. In one’s own home that sense of being in a foreign place is simply not a problem.  After all, this is “home”.  In a hospital there are different smells, different sounds, and a large number of strangers all intent on their own agenda, not putting the pregnant woman first.  There are noises and loudspeakers and pinging machines and germs in the air and on every single surface. Those in attendance tend to watch a monitor instead of the woman who is in labor. She may be hooked up to an IV and an internal fetal monitor. All of these restrict movement and make the woman uncomfortable.

In her own home a woman can be the true center of attention.  The only people around her are people she feels close to and comfortable with.  There are no strange noises, or germs that are unfamiliar to her body. The lighting is whatever she wishes.  The place where she labors is entirely her choice, she can move from rented birthing tub to shower to bed to floor or birthing stool. She can eat or drink whatever is at hand and have her needs met without complaint or “rule breaking”.

My daughter in law just gave birth in this beautiful, peaceful and safe way.  The baby was late, but less than two weeks.  No one suggested “bringing it” by artificial means. After many days of gentle contractions that never developed into real ones, she began to feel that they were changing during the night of March 23rd. But she was able to go back to sleep. She woke my son (and he called me) about 6 am. Her labor was actually not long  and the baby was born at 9:40 am.  The birth was uneventful, if you want to call a miracle uneventful. It was so beautiful to watch,mystical in a way as she reached a zone of maternal intensity necessary to give birth naturally.  My son, her husband played his role as supporter with such calm and loving availability.  He made me proud but he also really seemed to be “With her” in a way that only a truly trusting marriage can allow.

My handsome grandson is healthy, alert and surrounded by loving siblings parents and grandparents. How lucky he is to arrive into the world with so little trauma.  May he be lucky all his life.

A Passionate Response

17 Dec

I was told about an article on CNN

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/12/16/ep.vbac.birth.at.home/index.html

about a woman who refused to have a 4th C-section demanded by her doctor.  Instead she decided to have her baby at home.  She did so successfulyAnswer to a CNN column about a woman who had a VBA3C at home. Wonderful article. Here is my answer:

It surprises me how many comments there are criticizing this intelligent woman for making a choice for herself and her baby. Especially those who  belittle the idea of birth being a marvelous and exalting experience, and saying that a healthy baby is more important.  These people do not know much about birth, in my opinion.

A natural home birth is so much better for the mother and the baby that there is really no comparison. Birthing women need to feel safe and comfortable and surrounded by people they trust.  This is key to a good birth and a faster one as well.  We are “fight or flight” animals. Anyone who deals with animal births knows that intervening is dangerous and apt to cause a bad outcome.

Why don’t doctors realize this with all their education? I can only assume it is because almost NONE of them have ever been present at a home birth. They are taught only about problems that can arise, not about a peaceful birth. They are taught surgery. No one explains the power of a woman’s body to these OBs, today.  Some older doctors know about this, but they are very few.

Fear of lawsuits trumps a woman’s right to have the birth she wants. There was a post from an angryOB who sneared at the woman in the story for listening to Ricki Lake. Well that doctor is very, very wrong and honestly I could use all the exact derogatory words he used towards Aneka to describe what I think of HIS knowledge about birth. I have had 5 babies. I have caught in my hands the warm wet baby that my daughter decided to have at home. I have seen home birth. I have studied to be a doula. Perhaps not trained in medicine but so what? Birth is NOT a disease.

If you have a sniffle would you go to a surgeon who specializes in OPERATING ON NOSES? Of course you would not. Yet women go trustingly to their doctors and to the hospital thinking that THEIR wishes will be granted or even listened to. Fear has permeated the world of childbirth and that needs to be cleared up.  TV shows showing the MOST medical births possible frighten women and prepare them for interventions.

If you want a natural birth do NOT allow your baby to be induced. DO NOT allow any interventions at all. Some say that the first intervention is leaving your home in the first place. The safest, cleanest, quietest and most comfortable place to have a baby is in your own home. Doctors are shocked at this advice. Do your own research. It is ALL out there on the Internet. Birth is safe. Interventions are dangerous. TRUST BIRTH. Trust your body because it knows what to do.

Do you wonder whether home birth is safe or not?

24 Nov

The following commentary was written as an answer to an article about birthing at home versus hospital birth.  They characterized home birth as being less safe.  OBGmanagement.com had the article online. I decided to put my response on my blog because it may stir up some controversy and make people think.  That is what I want more than anything. If I can help encourage people to think for themselves that is the most I can ask. I don’t care so much what they believe as long as they have formed their opinions themselves after careful thought and thorough research. So here is my  response to OBG-managment:

Doctors seem to be so frightened of birth.  Is that because most of them have never seen a home birth?  Could it be because they are only taught about the dangers of birth? None of them have a chance to see the ease and pure joy of a woman who is giving birth on her own at home.

Clearly most doctors do not know why it is that women fight to have their own style of birth at home.

And I agree that for some women this is NOT the right choice.  A large part of the recipe for success of home birth is for the woman to have confidence in birth, to TRUST BIRTH, and of course she may wish to have trained support around her in the form of midwife and doula who also trust birth. And it helps a great deal if her partner and family also support her choice.

Most OBs do not trust birth.  Or they trust that it could turn dangerous at any moment, which almost ensures that it will.

The only fair thing seems to be to let the different groups do it their own way. Do not try to force an unwilling woman to have a home birth, nor conversely a woman who wishes to be able to birth at home should be encouraged to do so. Deciding to have a home birth is not a “crunchy granola” decision. It is a thoughtful and loving thing to do for one’s child and oneself.  Birth in a hospital can never approach the beauty of a home birth, and cannot help being at times unpleasant and institutional. Give women the choice and stop trying to scare them to death with dire predictions of disaster. Much of what goes wrong with birth in a hospital has to do with the many interventions that have become common place there. I support a woman’s right to choose home birth if she wishes it. Why don’t you?