Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Idiots Should Not Breed

(Please excuse the numerous posts for today, but there have been several things I have come across in the past week or so that I wanted to blog about and could not. Now is my chance!)

WARNING: This Video contains some female nudity! Don't report me!

Okay...I do not even know how to start this post. I am completely flabbergasted by this. John and I were watching television and we surf through the channels and find this documentary on "freebirthing". I am intrigued, as is John. We stop here and watch the piece.

Women, discouraged by either unsatisfactory prior birth experiences or by those of friends or family, are deciding to give birth at home. Completely unassisted by any medical personnel. Yes, women went through this daily in ages past. But do we really need to do this now?

So we watch, and I become more and more disgusted by the sheer negligence of it all. After all, as an expectant mother, one is expected to surrender their needs in the interest of the baby's well-being. I, myself, had to make such sacrifices, submitting myself to months and months of preterm labor/ contractions that were excrutiating. I wanted the pain to go away. I was exhausted. I could not afford the medical bills that were piling up before my eyes. But here is the thing: I didn't matter. Evan Robert did matter. I endured all of it for him. Up until the very end, I had the most invasive, intrusive, horrendous pregnancy experience one could have. Even his delivery was not something I would tell around a campfire while singing Kumbaya. I was strapped to an OR table with a suction catheter rammed down my throat to clear out the vomit I was at risk of aspirating. I heard him cry, and my tears started flowing because all I could think of was that they had told me his lungs would be in trouble because of his prematurity. He came out with a big lusty cry, which is very rare for c-section babies. I remember thinking "There is nothing wrong with his lungs. There is nothing wrong with his lungs." Over and over again. Then, before I even laid eyes on him, I heard a nurse tell John "Boy, you sure can't deny this one!" followed by John's laughter, so I knew he looked like his daddy before I even saw him. I remember shouting "Can I please see my baby???" And when I did see him, it was from a distance, a brief glimpse of this tiny little miracle swaddled in a receiving blanket. Not exactly a Mother Earth, One-With-Nature story. Was it what I would wish as my last childbirth experience? Probably not. Was it a smashing success? Absolutely! The evidence of its smashing success is asleep in the next room. He still looks just like his Daddy and still has the most robust set of pipes I have heard.

So these women are deciding they want the romantic version of giving birth naturally. That's great. It is true that medications given to Mommy during labor have an effect on Baby. Natural Childbirth is great if you can do it. Medicated Childbirth is great too. Pick what suits you for that stage of the game. But medical personnel are not just present at births for the Mommy. We are there for the baby just as much, if not more. And when you choose to do what these women are doing, you are making the choice to have no one present with the skills necessary to intervene on your baby's behalf if something were to go wrong. I am sorry to say this and burst any bubbles, but a bystander CPR course does not replace a team of medical professionals well-versed in neonatal resuscitation.

I am appalled by this. I am all for choices. For " birth plans" to give a woman and her family the experience they would like to have. But this should not be a choice. At least have a midwife present during your home birth.

So I start looking at some articles on this ghastly practice. I come across the website of the woman who has been so vocally advocating the practice, and I start reading some of the justifications for this "freebirthing". She actually stated that women have been doing this as long as mankind has existed. Yes, very true indeed. But that is because there used to be a day when we did not have such access to medical care. Cars didn't exist. Roadways were not present. Homes were far-flung. We also used to think that smoking was great for the body and bloodletting cured disease. So I keep reading, and see that she goes on to say, in so many words, that infant deaths have actually increased since hospital births have become the norm. I am not sure where she got her figures, but perhaps she is referring to the dark ages when medical personnel were not as skilled as they/ we are now. There was such a time. Furthermore, when Sally gave birth in her bedroom in a farmhouse way back when, and the baby did not survive, did we really have an acurate manner of keeping such records and statistics? Now, when a woman gives birth, there is this unbelievable string of documentation that must take place, These are just a few flaws in this woman's train of thought that I could pick out off the top of my head.

I think these women should be held accountable. If the child were to die, these women and any one participating in the act should be found guilty of manslaughter. I find this as neglectful as it would be for me to try to deprive my son of food or clothing or shelter. If these women do not want to be held responsible for these actions and accept these consequences, then they simply should not reproduce.

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