"Labour Issues And Options"

Natasha - posted on 02/28/2011 ( 18 moms have responded )





Ok, so I get these updates every week for my pregnancy, and usually I am pretty happy with them. Today however, I am kinda pissy with the "opinions" of the authour of this piece...

I am going to copy and paste a couple excerpts that got my blood boiling...

1) About getting an epidural: "A massive needle will be poked/jabbed into your spinal column as you're curled up in a fetal position to expose your spine - hoping they don't accidentally destroy some of your spinal nerves, which is a very real risk experienced by 20% of women." While this might be fact, the tone used to convey this information seems to be really pushy and judgemental.

2) About getting a C-section: "No matter how much you hate being pregnant and fear labor, you don't want a c-section. No matter how big your baby supposedly is or how tiny your pelvic cavity seems, you don't want (or need) a c-section." Although it's not my choice, I believe that every woman knows what she is capable of handling, and if she wants a c-section that is really her choice. This entire section pissed me off.

3) On EFM: "Exhaustive reviews of EFM have shown NO improved outcome for the baby (in terms of preventing death) while increasing psychological stress for the laboring mother and risk of an "emergency c-section" and episiotomy" I actually was relieved when I had my first son to have the EFM on, and it didn't cause me "psychological stress".

4) Use of Episiotomy, Forcepts and Vaccumn: "For some reason male doctors conceived of these completely medieval medical horrors for the same reason as the episiotomy (get baby out NOW)." I had an episiotomy with my son and although the dr (a female) didn't let the freezing sit long enough to take, I would prefer a clean snip then to have torn.

Please read this section of the post, and let me know what you think. I am planning on a natural, drug free birth (which is what I had with my son) for this baby, but am open to the possibilty of needing some medical assistance. I will try my hardest to avoid a c-section, but if it happens that I need one, then I will deal with it at the time.


Mary - posted on 03/01/2011




I think you just have to take stuff like this for what it is....biased crap. It's clearly not just a presentation of facts, but rather the author's very slanted view of medical interventions. From the simple use of words like "poked/jabbed" instead of the more neutral term inserted, it's clear that the whole point of this piece is to convey disdain and contempt with certain procedures, as well as to terrorize women into refusing them.

It's a shameful tactic often employed by hardcore advocates of unmedicated births. I personally have nothing against the concept of birth without intervention, but I believe the best way to go about promoting those beliefs is to highlight the positives of this kind of birth, rather than just a blanket attack on all things medical. Sadly, most proponents of natural childbirth seem hellbent on focusing on a campaign of fear and negativity, without realizing that they are coming off as both paranoid and judgmental.

Sarah - posted on 03/01/2011




People that write this kind of thing, in this tone of voice, quite frankly piss me off.

I've had ALL of the above done (except the vaccumn) and I'm happy to say that every single thing I had done has left me in no worse state than I was before it!

I LOVED my epidural with my eldest, I LOVED my C-section with my youngest.

These kind of medical interventions have come about for a reason and have saved SO many lives! That's why I can't understand why people are so fucking nasty about them. I totally understand that some women don't want to have them, and that's fine, but surely to goodness they should appreciate the fact that they ARE a life saving tool?!?!

I get really sick of some natural birth advocates who feel the need to berate and belittle those who need OR choose to go a different route from them. To me, it does nothing to help their cause, in fact, it makes me almost glad that I didn't have a natural birth......because I'd hate to have turned out so bloody sanctimonious and narrow minded!!!!

(sorry rant over! lol)

Natasha - posted on 03/01/2011




I have been getting the updates from this website since about 20ish weeks pregnant. I am usually pretty ok and in line with the advice that is being given. That being said, the TONE of this particular article kills me. There have been many other posts where they have conveyed thier opinions of medical procedures and practices in a far less condescending tone. Like I said, I am going to try and have a natural and drug free birth, but I know that if I need the medical intervention that I will take it.

My biggest issue is the way that the authour "explained" the procedures. This week's post annoys me, because I feel like the judgement is unwarranted and I know lots of first time moms that read these posts and are totally freaked out because of this information.

And Tara, I do get updates as well from babycenter.com. I enjoy getting a lot of information so that I can make the most informed, and personal decision that I can. I am a "pro-choice" labour girl. I don't think that anyone has the right to tell someone how they should or shouldn't have thier baby. Providing information is one thing, making people feel like crap because thier views/choices are different from your own is

Tara - posted on 03/01/2011




Okay having read the entire article now and some more from the site in question, this is a site that is biased to a "natural intervention free birth" everything this author tells you is based on her and the websites philosophy of natural (preferably home birthed) pregnancies. The whole article is full of "crunchyisms" the language used and the descriptive wording is all meant to sway readers to a natural birth if that wasn't their plan already.
If you don't like the slant of the advice from this site, try a more mainstream site for your updates, like babycenter.com or something like that.

Minnie - posted on 02/28/2011




Everyone has a different perception of common interventions. There are risks to interventions. Not all are necessary all of the time. The author is basing her opinions on her interpretation of the necessity of interventions and that she feels the risk is too great with the interventions.

I personally have no issue with the statements made here. For me these statements hold true.

I've said it before- what happened in my hospital birth drives me up the wall. But I'm sure that other women wouldn't blink twice about the interventions I had.


View replies by

Katherine - posted on 03/01/2011




I don't like the tone either. If you're having your first child this is NOT the way you want to hear these things!!!

It's way to abrasive for my taste. Even if it is true.

Natasha - posted on 03/01/2011




not ok with me.

(sorry, it posted all on it's own, and I wasn't quite finished my sentence.)

Tracey - posted on 03/01/2011




1. I had 2 epidurals, they didn't hurt going in. The only side effect was when I needed the toilet several hours later and thought it had worn off, got out of bed and collapsed on the floor cos my legs didn't work and had to crawl to the edge of my cubicle to get midwife's attention.
2. Never had a c-section, wouldn't have one by choice but if the baby needs it then go for it.
3. Had EFM, didn't cause me any stress and showed when my baby was in distress.
4. Had all three. If I hadn't my baby would have died. Her legs were caught under my ribs and she wasn't coming out without help. Didn't hurt as already had epidural.

Everyone wants a nice easy natural birth, be open to advice from the midwife and if you need help or pain relief take it. It is more important that you have a healthy child than to refuse medical assistance.

Jenn - posted on 02/28/2011




1) Sounds pretty accurate. I personally have back pain in the area of my epi on a daily basis - and my second one was over 2 years ago. And you do have to be in a "fetal position" or as much as your big ole pregnant belly will allow - the skin needs to be as taught as possible.

2) I agree - it shouldn't be a "choice" - but on an as needed basis.

3) I know Brian would watch the monitor like a hawk and freak out. I didn't pay attention to it much, but I could see how it could cause more stress for some people - like Brian LOL!

4) I would prefer to tear than be cut - and I've had it both ways. A natural tear generally is easier to stitch up and heals better with less scar tissue.

Maybe your pregnancy hormones are making you feel defensive and this rubbed you the wrong way. I know when I was pregnant I could find wrong in anything and everything LOL!!! I was once referred to as "The Canadian Complainer". :P

Nikki - posted on 02/28/2011




It depends on the context of the website. Are her articles usually based on her subjective opinion or is the website aimed at providing objective information to assist expecting mothers? If it is the latter then she has done a very bad job.

Stifler's - posted on 02/28/2011




I think it makes all medical interventions seem evil. They obviously invented the c-section for a reason, forceps, episiotomy etc. for a reason. I had none of those things (I had gas, gas and more gas) but I don't doubt that there are cases which the mother NEEDS them to assist with the delivery. None of the interventions sound pleasant to me no matter how anyone dressed them up but this definitely makes them sound scary!

Sharon - posted on 02/28/2011




Well, its the authors opinion.

But if it was her job to present the different scenarios in giving birth - she does a pretty shitty ass job.

Lady Heather - posted on 02/28/2011




If that's copied and pasted she's a pretty shit "author". Forcepts and Vaccumn. Those are kind of like words I guess. I hope this was a voluntary job.

Tara - posted on 02/28/2011




I tend to hold most of the same opinions as the author. I had no medication with any of my kids, and I also would prefer a small tear which is usually superficial than a cut that might end up tearing from one hole to the other. Think of a piece of fabric, if you try to tear it by hand it's hard to do, but if you put a small little snip in the side and then pull you can rip it straight down without much effort. Same as your muscle tissue.
I agree with the risk of having nerve damage not being worth it, for me.
I agree that barring a medical emergency a c-section is a risky unnecessary procedure, for me.
I prefer a home birth, with minimal interference from my midwives, I prefer to labour with just my SO. I hate EFM. They had me hooked up for my first birth, at a hospital, they had me hooked up at my third following an induction (cervical gel, not a drip) again at a hospital. Having it strapped to me drove me nutty, having the machine beeping away and someone coming in every 20 minutes to check "my" progress, whilst simply looking at a printout.
I had no need to see it, and no it does not improve outcome any better than regular checks for heart rate with a doppler or stethoscope.
So yea, I agree with the author, and being a freelance author she has a right to frame her opinions as she sees them. If it were supposed to be some kind of unbiased "medical" site, that's different, but this is an opinion, like mine and Lisa's, you can take it or leave it. Or in this case, read it or don't.

Lady Heather - posted on 02/28/2011




I had an episiotomy because my female MIDWIFE thought it was necessary and called a female doctor to do it. Didn't have any of the other stuff, but I can tell you that I'd much rather have a vacuum than a) a c-section or b) a dead baby. Those were the alternatives. I think if my natural birth loving midwife saw cause for it, there must be situations that warrant vacuums and other measures.

Laura - posted on 02/28/2011




1. I was not in the fetal position, I was sitting on the edge of the bed for all three of mine. And jabbing a massive needle into my spinal column didn't hurt at all actually because I was in the middle of a massive contraction (or two) and didn't feel the needle at all. (I love my epidural)

2. I wouldn't choose a C-section but if you need/want one then so be it.

3. I agree with you I liked the EFM and it actually made me feel better. But if you don't want one then ask the nurse not to have it.

4. I didn't have one but I did tear and only needed a few stitches. My cousin avoided a C-section because of use of forcepts and vacuum (that child did not want out)

Good luck to you, I'm glad you were able to have a drug free birth but I LOVED my epidurals (except when my hubby passed out on the second one) Good luck to you and I hope everything goes well with your pregnancy and birth.

[deleted account]

I've had an epidural (maybe 2? not sure what it was the second time, but it was a needle in the back) and 2 c-sections. Did I WANT them? Not particularly, but getting my babies out safe and sound was more important that what I 'wanted'. My first epi was ok, but when they stuck me w/ my son.... they 'missed' or something w/ the first poke, so had to do it again. I had massive back pain for WEEKS. I took my pain pills for that more than for anything else.

I agree w/ your assessment of these 'opinions' though. Some women NEED those things and some women just want them, but either way.... it's posted as if it will make women feel bad if they choose or need any of those things and I think that is wrong.

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