Monday, April 18, 2011

At least you got the groceries!

My friend went to the supermarket to go shopping. She prefers a natural diet because she knows it's better for her and her kids. She had to go on a Tuesday because that was the only day they could fit her in, despite the fact she didn't need any groceries for another week or two. They didn't have any of the food she likes to eat, the staff were rude and insisted that she buy what they had - even though she was very firm about not wanting it - they rushed her through as fast as they could and told her to be quiet so she didn't put off the other shoppers. When it was time to pay they simply fished around in her handbag, took out her wallet and the money and ushered her out the door with armfuls of shopping bags and a toddler in tow. They waved enthusiastically and said "see you again soon!"

She wasn't very happy so I said to her "Well, at least you got your groceries!"

She wasn't very happy so I said to her "but I find that supermarket WONDERFUL!?"

My friend went to the hospital to have a baby. She wanted a natural birth with no drugs. They insisted on inducing her because they didn't want too many women there on the weekend when her doctor was going on holidays. They didn't have a birth pool or allow her to move about freely in labour to ease the pain. In fact when she tried to move around they loudly chastised her, saying she was being too loud, and that other women would be frightened by her noises and that some were trying to sleep. They insisted that she have every imaginable procedure in the "cascade of interventions", despite her protesting. They even held her down and put things into her vagina against her will, once again telling her to be quiet and think of the other patients. Then they cut her baby out, told her she couldn't feel the ripping and tearing of her flesh, took her baby away, and left her in recovery, cold and alone. When it was time to discharge her they expected her to be happy, they waved and said "see you again soon".

She was traumatised, unable to breastfeed, unable to form a true bond with her baby, her caesarean scar was badly infected and burst open, she felt violated, she couldn't stop crying, she felt alone and scared, and guilty, and didn't want to get out of bed in the morning. She couldn't look after her older children and her partner couldn't take any time off work to help out.

I said to her "Well at least you got a healthy baby"

I said to her "But my caesarean was WONDERFUL!?"


Every women is grateful for the health of her baby. But a healthy baby is NOT all the matters, mothers matter too! And just because YOU had a good birth in a hospital doesn't mean that everyone has a good hospital birth. Let mother's speak their truth!

The Cascade