In a time where intervention rates are ridiculously high (63% at NHS Lothian – details from an FOI request – what percentage of births are induced/augemented/forceps/ventous/c-section – a rise in 12% in the last 5 years…. )
In a time where adverse events in maternity care are very high
In a time where women are made to feel stupid for making their choices
In a time where more women are having c-sections
In a time where women are scared and frightened to birth because of all the stories they’ve heard
In a time where more women are told their babies are too big for their pelvis
And breastfeeding rates are still ridiculously low.
It’s not good enough.
There is something going seriously wrong somewhere.
I believe medicalisation of birth, staff cutbacks and fear of litigation are meaning that less and less women are satisfied with their birth experiences. We are blessed with brilliant NHS midwives and obstetricians who do really care – this isn’t about the individual care that many women receive. Nor is it ignoring the fact that interventions do save lives. Somehow though, the system has got out of sync and no one is really overseeing a positive change to really look at birth outcomes in terms of birth satisfaction.
Birth isn’t just one day of our lives – it’s something that lives on within us and is the cornerstone of our experience as mums. Where women come from a place of strength, not recovery, they can parent with love and joy. Everything is easier.
There is a loss somewhere – it’s not that women are losing the ability to birth, to carry babies, to birth babies that fit through their pelvises, where they stand to birth rather than lie on their back, where they can birth more than one baby at home, where they are respected with their right to say no for an induction.
There’s a loss in empowering of women to make their choices, rather than for them to decline care, they should be asked for permission before an intervention.
There’s a loss in antenatal care which includes getting women to get up, move around, get fit physically for their birth.
Something is missing somewhere.
I find it incredible to believe that only 37% of women can birth on their own without any intervention whatsoever… is no one thinking for a moment that there’s something wrong? This is a normal bodily function.
This article in the Lancet really resonates with me
Health-care providers and health systems need to ensure that all women receive high-quality, evidence-based, equitable and respectful care. The right amount of care needs to be offered at the right time, and delivered in a manner that respects, protects, and promotes human rights.
My belief is that women can start to make the change – to own their births and experiences – make the right choices for them. If you’d like a better birth experience, you can work with me here, here or here. And if you’ve had a traumatic birth experience look here and here.
Much love, Tricia xxx