I am super excited about a new TV show starting tonight about my favourite subject, BIRTH! Delivering Babies presented by Emma Willis
I am planning to #review the episodes and I’ll let you all know what I think! Having been involved in the groundbreaking BBC1 documentary ‘Childbirth All Or Nothing’ I know what a tremendous force for good the mainstream #media can be for birthing #women! People still to this day thank me for changing the way they thought about birth causing them to be far more confident in the choices they made and resulting in a more positive experience for them and their baby.
BUT and there’s a big BUT, all too often a very limited, narrow view of birth is shown on TV. A medicalised view. Birth in a hospital. With women who are scared. Who aren’t prepared mentally or physically.
Now, I’m not taking anything away from these women who agree to go on these shows. Really I’m not. But when I’m watching them, I can’t help myself from shouting at the TV ‘WOMEN DESERVE BETTER! WHAT DO YOU MEAN SHE’S NOT ‘ALLOWED’? WHERE’S HER INFORMED CHOICE? HOW IS IT SHE FEELS SO SCARED? AAAAARGHHH!
Consequently, I don’t watch too many of these programmes on TV.
I was absolutely delighted to read in The Birmingham Mail that Emma Willis acted as Trainee Midwife at a home birth. And apparently she was so touched by the experience, she was in floods of tears. I believe that if women truly understood what makes birth happen, many many more would opt for home births with a birth team they know and trust. It’s just not yet the done thing in our culture but more and more, women are waking up and demanding we be treated for optimal birth physiology.
Having seen many home births, as a doula, I appreciate the massive effect that a familiar place of birth. In my experience, most women do better at home. It’s no coincidence that midwives ‘want you to stay at home for as long as possible’ if you’re opting for a hospital birth. They know home is where most people feel most comfortable and your contractions (surges) are likely to crack on more when you’re feeling comfortable.
At a particularly traumatic birth, I’m not surprised to learn that Emma Willis #fainted. In most cases, in my opinion, it’s probably the fault of the system in the first place that create the environment for trauma to happen.
I heard an amazing quote recently that ‘the trauma of maternity services is masquerading as the trauma of childbirth.’
I’m a bit disappointed at the title of the show ‘Delivering Babies.’
Letters get delivered. Parcels get delivered. But women birth babies!
Consciously changing the way we use language around birth will enable women to be true creators of their own birth experience. If you have your baby delivered, it sounds like something is being done to you and yet, YOU are the one doing it!
Changing the language we use around birth is one of the ways women can take more control. For years we have accepted that birth is something we need a great amount of help with. But I don’t believe that to be the case. I believe in most cases, with true support and without interference, WE CAN DO IT!
In terms of the maternity system, we should be doing better. I know there are great people doing great things to make this change happen.
I will await the first episode tonight with eager anticipation!