Monday, January 9, 2012

Mothers Know

Mothers Know exactly what they need to safely give birth to their children without anyone telling them what to do.  The first thing I ask each mother and her birth partner if s/he is there, is "What is your idea of your ideal birth?"  I've never known any mother to pause at this point.  Each mother has a crystal clear idea of what they want for the birth of their child and their care after the birth.  There is a wide range of possibilities to choose from and each one is right for the specific woman who chooses them.

A woman who has survived sexual abuse in childhood may not feel comfortable with having a natural birth.  When there has been trauma in life I, as a Doula, want to prevent that trauma from being triggered during birth.  A survivor may have been able to distance herself from past abuse and created a safe place in her life from which she is able to function.  If this same woman had a vaginal delivery, no matter how supported by Doulas she was, the vaginal birth could trigger earlier sexual trauma as if it were happening in current time.  At all times I want to avoid heightened anxiety, distancing, depression and other coping behaviors associated with trauma during the birth of a baby.

An infant needs a mother who can breastfeed skin to skin, gaze fondly in her baby's eyes, room in with her infant as she recovers and care for her newborn when she is home.  When a woman's ideal birth is an elective Cesarean Section with General Anesthesia it may be a wise decision to support her in her choice.  She  knows what she needs to birth safely.

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