This mum says she is sick of women bragging about their drug-free births…

A frustrated mum has taken to Mumsnet to ask if a drug-free birth is really any better than choosing to use pain relief. The mum says she has noticed that many women who have a baby without any intervention feel the need to brag about their ‘natural births’, making others feel bad about their own birth experience.

The Best-Laid Plans…

The mum says that despite having a detailed birth plan for her first daughter, things didn’t go to plan. “I was quite relaxed about my birth plan, didn’t want pain relief or anything if I could manage it,” she wrote. “After three days of labour with a back to back baby and not progressing, I had to have an epidural.” Though the experience wasn’t exactly what she imagined, the mum says she was just grateful to have had a happy and healthy baby, but began to notice a disturbing trend on social media that made her feel that she had somehow failed.

“A woman on Facebook announced her babies birth with the line ‘total natural birth, I am a lioness’…am I being unreasonable to think that this is a bit ridiculous?” she wrote. “Do we really need to make people feel bad about how they gave birth? Do you secretly feel better about yourself knowing you’ve done it with no pain relief?”

No Other Option

Some commenters admitted that having a ‘natural’ birth gave them a sense of achievement. “I am (secretly) proud of myself for managing the second time ’round with gas and air,” wrote one mum. “I gave birth to my son with gas an air,” said another. “I have just read previous comments about how only gas and air is good! Yippee! I feel quite smug now.”

Other mums were quick to point out that many women don’t get a choice. “Giving birth is mental however you do it,” one commenter said. “Any woman who does it is entitled to feel proud.” “You can plan as much as you like but no one has any idea what will happen during labour,” said another.

While every mum would love a straight-forward, complication-free experience, nature often has other ideas and no two births are ever the same. We think whatever ensures a happy and safe experience for both mum and bub can only result in a birth story to be proud of!

Did you feel disappointed because you couldn’t have a ‘natural’ birth? Share your story in the comments.

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  • This mum was in labour for 3 days and Bub was definitely not inthe ideal position.
    I can understand her not liking other mums publicly posting they went ‘drug free’ because they are definitely bragging and doing it for others gratitude, not for personal reasons


  • I wouldn’t take any notice what other people think. Whether you have a natural birth, gas or an epidural as long as your baby is healthy you’ve done a marvellous thing. Forget about the naysayers, just enjoy your beautiful baby (or babies) and be proud of yourself.


  • I really don’t think it matters. Do what’s right for you.


  • It’s articles like this which perpetuate the argument and ideas that one birth is better than another. The best birth is one where the mother and baby are safe and well. If this article was rephrased I wouldn’t have an issue with it, but I really hate click bait


  • There’s no extra medal, you come out with the same reward “a Baby” I’ve done it both ways and I can’t say I felt any different for not having drugs, other than more tired and stressed maybe


  • I tried for 4 years to have a baby so I didn’t care how I delivered … and I had it all. Induction, gas, pethadene, epidural… all things I had to deliver me a healthy baby. Whatever it took. I didn’t go through the struggle of IVF to be precious about how I delivered.


  • I’m pretty happy with myself for not having an epidural for both births. But it is odd that I feel this – does it prove I am tough and can handle pain? So what?!


  • I had two babies, one with nearly every drug available including being rushed to theatre where my child was in distress, the second was drug free with no intervention at all, so much so the midwife nearly dropped the baby on the floor because she told me I wouldn’t be having this baby for hours yet. After having the drug free baby I told my husband I was never having another baby as I was so traumatised by the so called midwife who only stressed me out. Doctors and drugs are great and MY midwife was a bitch and a danger to her profession. So just really saying no one is better than anyone else and just to upset the applecart more I think bottle feeding is awesome!!!!! What ever suits you! Breast or bottle because a happy mum is a happy baby!


  • All you “superior” mums.. go suck an egg. My bub was posterior and i was screaming for am epidural. Theres is no way. It would have been impossible to birth her without. Ans because of the epidural i had a beautiful birth that i endured calmly and enjoyed!


  • ‘superior’ …no
    You do you .
    Whatever is best for the baby and mum ????
    The shame over having pain relief is ridiculous. There is no prize waiting at the door for not having an epidural, what a midwife said to me during the beginning of my labor.
    I had an epidural and while I had abit of shame (from people who haven’t given birth yet but have read hypnobirthing) I would have one again in a heartbeat.
    It helped speed my labor along and helped me avoid a C-section


  • As long as mum and bubs are happy and healthy who cares about how they came into the world.


  • Drug free didn’t work for me.


  • There is no comparison births are all different but we should be able to talk about them. I was too late for pain relief and I certainly don’t feel superior to anyone who had it but we should all be proud of our births regard of how they happen they are brutal on our bodies but we do it and care for s newborn while we recover.


  • If you care about the health or your child then you would. It’s doable, calmbirth classes etc it’s an important part of the process and one to be respected


  • Just do what feels right for and is applicable at the time. If you don’t put everything out there on social media no one would know about it in the first place. Live your own life and stuff social media.


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