The trouble with technologically dependent society…


I was having a conversation with a friend the other day and she said something that’s been on my mind ever since. We were talking about babies and how the birthing process has changed over the years. She used to work in a hospital in Holland and was telling me how they never used pain medication, it wasn’t even offered to patients when she worked there and they only did surgery when it was a life/death situation.

I was recently upset to learn that my new doctor, who I started going to specifically BECAUSE of her delivery method, is no longer going to be delivering babies. She was the last one in our area that believed in Natural Child Birth. Something that is important to me. I was informed by her office that, if I wanted to stay local, my only option now would be to have a midwife deliver at home. While I’m not totally opposed to that, since we live 10 minutes from the closest hospital, I was (am) still upset that she won’t be doing the delivery.

As I thought about this, I pulled more piece together. Four people I know were all pregnant and due relatively close to each other. The first, was going to have a natural childbirth, but I later found out ended up having a c-section due to complications. The next, ended up having a c-section. Then 2 more, within days of each other, 20 hours into labor, ended up having c-sections. Does anyone manage a natural labor anymore? Or do you get to a certain point in the delivery process and the doctors just make the call for you?

Being so pro-natural birth, I’m really bothered and actually worried about having a child. Since I will be new to this, when we eventually get pregnant, I’m nervous that I won’t have a choice about the birthing experience. I don’t want an epidural, I don’t want to be in labor and have someone tell me my time’s up (unless there’s a problem that requires medical intervention), I want to make the choices that feel right for me, my baby and my body. Do we rely too much on technology? Have we reached a point where we can’t even birth our own children anymore?

3 comments to “The trouble with technologically dependent society…”

  1. 1

    On October 27th, 2009 at 11:27 am, Gus said...

    I know how you feel. We went through the same thing. We found a doctor who was willing to let us do what we wanted. Dr. Baumgart I believe is how it is spelled. He is out of Kishwaukee. Not sure who your insurance plan has though.

    We had a natural birth at the hospital. One trick to that was in knowing what the birthing process was really like. There’s little need to rush to the hospital as soon one starts feeling contractions. We waited until they were pretty close together before going. Because we knew the hospital would be interested in getting us “processed”.

    Actually it was a good experience. Not once did someone offer or recommend pitosin (spelling?) or pain medications to us. I believe this is because we had indicated so much before that we didn’t want to do that. And pitosin is the main problem. I’ll leave you to research that on your own or you can email me about it if you want more info.

    Anyway. 99.9% of the time, everything works the way it’s meant to if you don’t intervene. Your body was built for it.

  2. 2

    On November 2nd, 2009 at 11:29 am, Practical Mommy said...

    You are absolutely right to be concerned. I was lucky and had 2 unmedicated births. But this summer, My Mommy Manual sponsored the play, BIRTH by Karen Brody and I was so upset by what I learned from that experience. After the play, there was a panel discussion including a family practitioner, a labor and delivery nurse and a doula. They were explaining that the largest training hospitals had a very low rate of unmedicated births… so OB’s in training very rarely even experience/train for it. That’s why the c-section rate is so high… because doctors are more comfortable with that delivery method than any other.

    I’m afraid for my daughter, that she will not have the birth experience she wants if/when she chooses to have babies.

  3. 3

    On December 5th, 2009 at 8:49 am, Nicole said...

    I was very insistent that I wanted a natural birth and you would not believe how many times I had to defend my decision, leading up to and inside of the hospital.
    I got lucky with my doctor because he had a midwife practice running out of his office and could respect alternative choices (although I’m still not sure why a natural method is considered alternative, but that’s a whole other issue) but other than inducing me,when I was two weeks overdue, my doctor wasn’t in the room or even on my floor while I was in labour.
    On top of being in labour I constantly had to argue with the nurses who tried to intimidate me into using pain medication.
    Things like “you’re going to be sorry” and laughing and telling me that I’m going to be in HARD labour for two days, when in reality I was only in labour for just under three hours — total.
    I gave in eventually, and got a shot of morphine.
    Not even kidding, my son was born before it could even kick in.
    They didn’t check to see how far along I was before telling me I needed something or giving it to me.
    If I had just waited THREE more minutes. *sigh*
    Next time I’m just going to believe in my body because I know that it’s more than capable of doing what it’s supposed to during labour.
    And I’ll have my SO advocate for me in the delivery room. I was lucky to have my mom there with me the first time and she could respect my decision even though it was hard for her to see HER baby in so much pain.

    I should mention that I’m lucky that I’ve moved where I have — there is a huge natural birthing community here and I can’t wait to get to use it!