Tuesday, July 5, 2011

What does Choice mean to you? An open thread.

I am truly curious about women who advocate for choices but have no problem removing the ones from women that they don't agree with. This post comes about after many conversations I've had and read regarding an article that reported one hospital banning elective cesarean sections and inductions.

Now to be fair, there is part of me that wants to give in and celebrate this a victory for natural birth advocates, for women, for babies, but then there is another part that first and foremost terrified of the word ban and choice being in the same sentence when it comes to how women birth their babies. So before I get up on my high horse and tell you all why, I want to hear from you. I am hoping to learn something and have meaningful dialogue, not discredit anyone's point of view or argue. So let's try not do that in the comments, passionate as you all may be! Let's open it up to all choices in childbirth, not just this one. Do you feel there are other things that should be banned? If so, why, and again, why do you think it's not a dangerous thing to do, banning any choice in childbirth. So it's open to you ladies (and gentlemen if you are out there).


  1. While I would never want a c-section (an elective one that is, I'd go for it if my baby's life were TRULY in jeopardy), I'm more of a let the baby come when the baby is ready type of person...
    I don't like seeing a ban on anything in regard to choice in child birth. I don't like to see a ban on anything in regard to a choice a woman has when it comes to her own body period. I am fearful if more hospitals follow suit...and "bans" such as the one in that article become more common, it's just going to be a slippery slope.
    I tend to think as soon as you start taking away choices, you're marching head on into taking away all choices...
    Maybe that's a bit "alarmist" of me. But it's a true fear of mine when I see headlines like that.

  2. The last paragraph states that they will still do scheduled c-sections and inductions if there is a health risk. I do not agree with "elective" of either of those options even though I chose to be induced with my first child (at 40w4d). You live you learn. If a mother would elect either, they should be directed to another facility. I do agree with one article commenter who was infuriated that the article claimed mothers elect either. It most likely is Dr. persuasion that they choose that. All that being said, BAN is a very strong word, off-putting and somewhat misleading. If I were PR for that hospital, I would not be happy with the way the article was worded. They kind of missed the goal, which I think is safety and education. On the flip side of what Amy H is stating, which I absolutely understand her POV, I already feel like some of my choices are taken away when I'm not given options but expected to just follow protocol. There is fear and ignorance in childbirth and unless you're the type of person that educates yourself and don't just rely on professional opinion, the staff isn't typically going to give you options for things such as IV or not, fetal monitor or not, eat or not, etc. At least in my experience. Conclusion, we should get to choose. And any halfway intelligent mother wouldn't elect to have a baby too soon. Maybe it happens but I can't even begin to grasp that thought process.

  3. I accidentally stumbled into the world of NCB, MW, VBAC & HB. I had been seeing a MW at local OB ofc for routine womanly care. Found myself PG. She said she could care for me & deliver my baby or transfer me to the OB. I had never heard of a MW delivering babies (sad I know) but I already had a relationship w/her & so I stuck w/her. At that very first "yes, you are PG" appt she talked to me about VBAC. Told me to do some research. Told me to read Ina May's "Guide to Childbirth." Told me that the less interventions we did the more likely I was to get my VBAC. At 37 weeks I had an US for suspected IUGR. Baby was fine but his head was HUGE. The perinatologist told her that there was NO way someone my size (5'7" & 100 lbs not PG, I made it to a whopping 123 lbs PG)could deliver a baby w/such a big head & he guaranteed 100% I would need a c/sec. She ignored him. At 39 wks 4 days I vaginally delivered, intervention & medication free, a baby boy w/a 14 1/2" head. Had she listened to him I would've had a c/sec. She trusted my body. I trusted her. 4 years later I delivered another baby boy, at my home, HBAC. If "powers that be" had their way I may not have gotten my VBAC. And I certainly wouldn't have gotten my HBAC. I never forget how lucky I was/am to live in TX, where MW are mostly supported & HB, even HBAC is a legal option. I am keenly aware that if I lived in another state, or hadn't accidentally found a VBAC supportive MW, my births would've been dramatically different. I am against ECS. Period. BUT I am FOR Informed Consent & Choices in Childbirth. When the 2 clash, I always stand behind informed consent & choices. After all, I KNOW how I would've felt if I had been forced to base my decisions in my childbirth on what some group of ppl decide is "in my best interest." Limiting choices is a slippery slope, if they can dictate HER available choices then they can dictate MINE. I am NOT OK w/that. A better solution to this problem? The medical community needs to stop "glossing" over the risks involved in c/sec. Stop treating it like it's a routine surgery. Start treating it like the major surgery, w/risks to both mother & baby, that it is. I believe that if they do this women will stop feeling like a C/sec for convenience or scheduling is an acceptable risk...

  4. I'm kinda torn on this issue. I believe if a mom wants a c/s or induction and is fully informed of the risks she should be allowed to make that choice.

    In the other hand though, doctors are sworn to do no harm, so they shouldn't really be doing c/s or inductions in cases where the risks outweigh the benefits. I mean what if a mom wanted the baby out at 35 weeks? There has to be a line somewhere.

    I really don't see this as being a big deal though, because we all know women aren't exactly beating down doors, begging for elective c-sections as this article would have us believe.