I read a blog posting the other day about a woman who felt she was denied a natural childbirth when her OB made her have a C-section. She felt that she was denied that instant connection with her son. It took her several months to make peace with the decision that she felt was unnecessary and not really her decision.
I bring this up not to discuss the merits of vaginal births versus C-sections. I bring this topic up because some of the comments that women made in response to the blog posting were downright mean. And I was appalled. How can women be so cruel to other women in this way?
Women need to support one another in forums like this; not tell her to “get over her feelings” and to “suck it up”. She was attacked and told that she “should be happy that she had a healthy baby” and to “quit complaining”. There were worse things said but I am not going to give them credence.
For some women, the whole childbirth experience is just that; an experience. They want to feel every contraction, every push, every last gasp for air as the baby makes its way into the world. And that’s okay. There are also some women that request medication to help ease the pains of labor and then there are some women that end up needing a Caesarean. And that’s okay too.
As a mother who had to have an emergency C-section, I did not give birth naturally and I am completely okay with that. But it’s my right to be okay with it. Just like the author of the blog posting, we are entitled to our feelings about how our children came into the world. No mother should be looked down upon because her childbirth experience left her feeling bereft.
I wish women would understand that we are all in this messy world of parenting together and that we need to support each other. Attacking one another with verbal swords and spears is not only hurtful, but counter-productive. We need to re-learn the arts of empathy and sympathy and know the difference between attacking and respectfully disagreeing.
Words have the power to hurt. Words have the power to eviscerate. Words can pierce our protective emotional armor…we would be wise to remember that.