A couple of days ago I had my hair done. This is the week of me running around doing all my maintenance appointments before bub comes.
As I sat in the salon I heard a woman talking to my friend/hairdresser about birth, probably spurred on by seeing me waddling around so heavily pregnant.
As a part of their conversation I heard the woman say “well at least you didn’t have a cesarean”…. She probably meant nothing by it. It is probably ingrained in her to look at that as the ultimate ‘bad’ birth.
Why? Why are we still here ladies? Why do we unconsciously put down births that aren’t ‘natural’ (meaning vaginal and drug free). It makes me so mad I could scream.
Every talk about birth is the same. We are asked if we had the baby ‘naturally’ as opposed to just saying ‘vaginally’, immediately this terminology reeks of failure because anything else is unnatural. You are then asked if you had pain relief. If you did then a couple of woman points are taken off of you.
As for a cesarean… well you may as hand in your woman card all together. Because you are instantly looked at with pity, disgust and judgement. But why?
Cesarean’s are rarely done or chosen by the women on a whim. Most likely it wasn’t their first choice either and they have had to mentally process that the birth they are told is ideal won’t be available to them. There is usually a medical reason as to why (either physical or mental) and even if there isn’t why judge? Why pile on?
Why does someone else’s birth upset some women? Does it affect you? Is it important for some people to compare others births to their own. Are we ranking each other?
Can I please remind everyone that birth can be dangerous? So particularly if there is a medical reason why do people still pressure a couple into having a vaginal birth. Is a child’s or mother’s life worth risking to gain approval? And yes I speak from experience, I get messages telling me to do a VBAC despite my medical risks.
Please can we stop looking at cesarean’s as though they are the worst birth. I know of some vaginal births that are awful and traumatic; and I know if some beautiful cesarean’s. So it’s not about the experience. It must be something else. So what? All I can think of is some biazare pride.
Can we stop competing in some crazy (at times dangerous) race against each other?
So… if you overtly or subconsciously judge people please take a moment to ask yourself why. Why do you feel that way? Is making your opinion known worth hurting another woman (who is likely already in a fragile space)?
Let’s stop contributing to this damaging and toxic problem by questioning. Let’s questions these views and change our language.