It is unacceptable to belittle a woman's feelings about her birth if it didn't go as planned. Far too often woman hear "well you and the baby are alive and healthy" and are made to feel guilty about wanting more out of the birth experience.
Birth is not just about birthing babies, it's about birthing mothers. The confidence and joy a woman feels by being encouraged and empowered in her birth decisions will stay with her the rest of her life. Similarly, the hurt and trauma she feels by being disrespected and violated will also stay with her.
Let us all work to change the culture, it is more than okay for a woman to want the birth she wants, and to expect that even if plans change, she will be respected and supported by her birth team. It's time to speak up about the wrongdoings of some obstetric practices and care providers. It is your body, your baby, your birth, and needs to ultimately be your choice.
This is one of the reasons why I am a doula, and why I believe every woman should have a doula To know that no matter what, a doula is on your side. To help women find and keep their voice, to help them understand potential interventions and their possible alternatives, but also help accept and feel heard if an intervention is needed. The most important of all is for women to feel supported in their decisions that will allow them to have the their most enjoyable birth.
Exposing The Silence is a project run by Lindsay Askins and Cristen Pasucci. Their goal is to aid the conversation about obstetrical mistreatment and violence towards women and their families during the time surrounding birth.
Take a moment to read their stories and support the cause, help end obstetric violence!