While some women give birth more than once, it still doesn’t happen very often in a woman’s lifetime. Even if you end up having 12 children, childbirth is still an unusual, special event. And I would venture to suggest that you’ll remember every birth. Maybe you won’t remember all of the details of 12 different births, but you’ll remember the way you felt about each of them. This is certainly true when you give birth less than a handful of times.
The Event Stays with You Forever
It’s really important to make your childbirth experiences count, because they tend to stay with you forever. Women who have horrible childbirth experiences might need years to come to peace with them. And in the meantime, they end up sharing their story with a lot of other women. While it’s natural to want to tell your story, it’s not always helpful for the expecting mother to listen to negative or scary childbirth stories. It’s actually rather the opposite of helpful.
While you can change your parenting style along the way, you really can’t undo your childbirth experiences. Many mothers end up choosing a different type of birth with their second or subsequent child, because their hospital birth was not what they really wanted. Having a peaceful birth can go a long way to healing you from previous experiences.
There Are Consequences for Your Decisions
Whether you end up choosing a midwife, a doctor, or your husband to be your birth attendant, your choices will affect the outcome. Similarly, if you opt for a repeat cesarean or an epidural, these decisions come with consequences. The biggest decision that you have to make is to one about your caregiver. If you end up going with a doctor or a midwife, then there will probably be a point where they’re in control of the process.
Choosing a care provider who is on board with what you want is going to increase the chances of getting your perfect birth experience. This means you should sound out your doctor or midwife about induction, episiotomy, pain relief, forceps, vacuum, C-section, delayed clamping, and other topics that are dear to you. If your provider doesn’t feel like answering your questions, then he is obviously not a good choice. If your provider is evasive and not a proponent of natural childbirth, then you might also want to keep looking.
A good childbirth attendant will have faith in your body and in the process. If interventions become necessary, he will use them sparingly and only when they’re truly needed. On the whole, his job is to help you give birth. That’s it.
You Won’t Have to Live with Regrets
If you can find the provider you want (or none at all), then you don’t have to live with regrets later. Wanting to give birth naturally is a great goal, but it’s really hard to achieve this goal without being proactive about it. Therefore, you need to educate yourself about childbirth and what happens when. If your provider wants to intervene, you still have the right to say no. It’s your body and your baby. And in most cases, interventions are not performed because they are really needed. Instead, there are too many of them.
Is Unassisted Childbirth the Right Choice for You?
Every woman should be allowed to choose how she wants to give birth. The good news is that you have lots of options available to you. The bad news is that not every option will be the right choice for every woman. You can give birth at the hospital, at a birth center, at home, or in a cornfield. But in addition to the place of birth, you will also need to choose your birth attendants. Do you want to give birth with a doctor, midwife, doula, or your spouse present? Of course, you can choose more than one attendant or none at all.
Are Women Birthing Alone?
Giving birth unassisted means giving birth without a medically trained professional nearby. It’s still considered an unassisted childbirth if your husband and your kids are present. That means you really don’t have to give birth alone at all. However, in the medical sense, you’ll be doing this on your own.
Unassisted childbirth is not the right choice for everyone. In fact, it’s probably only the right choice for a small percentage of women. Humans are very social beings. It’s natural to crave company and reassurance during an emotional event like childbirth. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.
Who Chooses Unassisted Childbirth?
Most women who choose to give birth unassisted have been disappointed by the medical establishment. This means they probably had a first birth that was not as satisfying as they had hoped it would be. Whether they were given an epidural or whether they just disliked the lack of privacy in the hospital, these women usually have several reasons to give birth on their own.
Women may also choose unassisted childbirth when there is no other natural alternative. For example, some doctors will refuse to allow woman to have a natural birth after they have had a C-section. Some midwives aren’t able to keep certain clients if they are high-risk for one reason or another. In some states, midwives aren’t allowed to attend homebirths. This leaves many women with only two options: giving birth at the hospital in a highly regulated setting or doing it on their own.
How to Make the Decision
Choosing how to give birth is something you shouldn’t take lightly. After all, you will always remember that event. In order to make the decision, you need to educate yourself. First, you should learn about natural childbirth in general. If you’ve given birth before, then you may have a better idea of what to expect. But next, you will need to learn things that other women never even think about. For example, how and when do you cut the cord?
Learning as much as you can about the process will help you no matter which type of birth you end up having. But it’s very important to be prepared if you do decide to have an unassisted birth. Once you make the decision, you may not want to tell anyone but your closest friends and family members. You should also know that you can change your mind at any point in time. And if complications arise that you can’t deal with on your own, you may definitely want to seek out medical help.