Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Difference Between Right and Wrong

During the course of this blog, I've noticed a recurring issue that we haven't addressed directly yet-what's right and what's wrong in childbirth?...

We definitely have opinions about that here (if you haven't noticed :)) but we should make it VERY CLEAR that what we find WRONG with childbirth has nothing to do with the individual decisions a woman makes, and EVERYTHING to do with the imposing medical world that dominates childbirth in this country and the social and cultural environment we are born into that teaches us from a young age to trust it without question.

Please allow me to diverge a little and tell you about a billboard I just saw-which I will really try to get a picture of soon-on the side of the freeway in Emeryville, CA (just after Ikea if you're on I-80 eastbound). It features a picture of a happy, carefree woman, dressed in a flowing blouse, half-reclined in the grass so that her pregnant belly is obvious, and smiling at her little toddler on her lap. It reads, "Kaiser Permanente...DELIVERS". Delivers what? Ignorance? Deception? Pressure? An incomplete birthing experience? Anyway, I thought MOTHERS delivered babies. This is the hold they have on the our society (I'll use the example of my own birthing experience at Kaiser in the next posting-and no, it's wasn't horrible nor am I bitter, it's just simply wrong). There is so much damage to undo here that it's hard to know where to start. But one thing is for sure-we have to be bold about it or nothing will change.

Now, we have to use individual situations and experiences as examples of course but, if women make "wrong" decisions during pregnancy and childbirth, it is the result of social conditioning. The main purpose of this blog is to help women realize this and to want to get out from under that shadow. That's the only way it can happen-little by little it will catch on as women help to enlighten each another but also so no one feels like they or their former births were "wrong" in any way because that's not the point. I know this is possible because I have seen it happen already in my small circle of acquaintance and it's wonderful! We are all victims of this deception in some way (even many doctors and health professionals themselves because it has been in place for generations) so we can't blame ourselves for what we didn't know-only for what we don't do to change it for the future.

We need to come full circle, where, instead of women giving birth, making choices, and taking classes within this false belief system that meshes medicine with childbirth, there are women doing all of those same things but in the light of the truth. They are raised and educated from a young age in a society that has completely exposed and eliminated the oppressive medical dominance over chidlbirth but not the accessibility of it for those who choose to utilize it. It's a society where the real truth of childbirth is understood by everyone and the joy is experienced by everyone and it is all naturally woven into the fabric of our culture.

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