Childbirth Methods: Home Birthing Isn't So Scary
Throughout the ages, childbirth methods have changed. Plenty of people have come into this world without the benefit of a hospital— and I'm not talking about the Dark Ages, either.
Today many hospitals have their own birth horror stories: women being handed the wrong baby, misplacing babies, babies being given incorrect doses of medicine, women not being able to bond with their babies because they were whisked away to incubators, etc. Obviously, a home birth carries its own risks, but unless the pregnancy is high-risk, I don't think there is any reason not to do a home birth if that's what the mama wants. Obviously, childbirth methods all have pros and cons. But people don't usually see the pros of home birth.
Concerns expressed by my friends were often frankly put:
- "I saw a home water birth on A Baby Story and she looked fat." (If you give birth in a hospital, suddenly you look like Elle McPherson?)
- "What happens if there are complications?" (An ambulance, naturally.)
- "Will they sew you up after the episiotomy?" (In truth, I was asked if I'd be left "flapping in the breeze.")
- "What happens if you die?" (Consult your local cleric. People don't ever die in hospitals, right?)
- Won't it be messy?" (???)
- "What if it hurts?" (Doesn't it always? I hear about pain-free births, but I hear about unicorns, too.)
But the great things about home birth are:
- You know it's your baby.
- Barring complications, you get to be with your baby the whole time.
- Your support crowd is there with you at all times and generally not distracted.
- You can have as many or as few people there as you want.
- You can ask for drugs and they will take you to a hospital.
- You get to be home.
My biggest supporter? My friend who was born in her mom's car in the parking lot of a hospital. She was number three, and her mom was a nurse and should have known better. She felt her mom would have been better off staying home.