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If anything in this world drives me crazy, it is this question. “Will they let me go over my due date?” “Will they let me have a vaginal birth?” “Will they let me labour as long as my body needs to?”, I could go on and on, but we’ve all heard many versions of the “will they let me?” question.

If there is one piece of advice I could impart onto every woman, whether she is my client or not, it would be this: they have no right to control your medical decisions. You must remember that you are the master of your choices and decisions, and yes that includes medical decisions. Every single medical procedure requires your consent, whether that is having a stitch removed, a boil lanced, or an induction of labour.

Of course, when it comes to childbirth, many practitioners like to play the emergency card. ‘We can either induce you and have a healthy baby, or your baby could die,’ ‘we can do a c-section, or you and your baby could die,’ ‘would you rather be stubborn or hold a healthy baby in your arms?’ Of course this is effective, mothers only want the best for their babies.

When a medical practitioner who has had years of training and experience says things like this, they must know what they’re talking about right? Well, in a word, no.

Unless you have an actual medical condition like pre-eclampsia, or eclampsia, baby is not thriving, suffering from IUGR, or any other condition that is an actual threat to either mother or babies lives. They are wrong.

Post dates, estimated big baby, previous c-section, whichever the case may be. There is no reason a healthy pregnancy and mother and baby should be interfered with.

With a very small percentage of women excluded, we are all designed to give birth. Our bodies and our babies know what to do. Some mothers gestate bang on 40 weeks, others can’t seem to cook their babies longer than 37 weeks and others normal is a 42 week pregnancy.

Everything in nature has a season, you can’t control the weather, just as much as you can’t control the normal progress of childbirth. We are designed to do it!

Women who have had previous bad experiences that ended with episiotomies, c-sections, forceps etc., typically ended up that way because the normal process was interfered with. The mother was made to lie on her back, she required pain relief or an epidural because she couldn’t move to cope with her surges. Labour slowed, pit was introduced, epidural was administered.

Just about all of these things are typically avoided if a woman can labour and move freely.

Deliver the baby in an upright position, use water either in a birthing pool or shower to help with pain relief. Have labour support that encourages, rather than pressuring her to take full advantage of all the medical interventions that wouldn’t be there if we didn’t need them right?

Ladies (and partners) trust in yourself, and always, always remember; you can say NO! Remember this phrase: You are the master of yours and your baby’s medical decisions, intervention can only occur with your consent.

Have you ever felt the pressure from a doctor about your baby? Share with us below.

Image source Shutterstock.

  • My first was an undiagnosed breech, I had no idea how to cope with this, and as a result I did feel a bit pressured. I thought they were the professionals, they know what’s best. Now I know do much more about the dangers of undiagnosed breech births, it scares me that we were so close to disaster

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  • I didn’t feel pressure as I was very relaxed and knew what I wanted but my partner felt a bit of pressure from midwives


    • It is a time when there can be pressure and you do have to be united for sure. :)

    Reply

  • I felt pressure – but held the line and we did it our way.

    Reply

  • I think I walk a line between my own instincts and the advice of professionals. If it sounds right to me, I will go with it. If it doesn’t, I will question and do some research of my own.

    Reply

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