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Monday, April 12, 2010

Defiance: Part 2

As a follow-up to my first post on this subject, last night I checked emails and found updates on the discussion over VBACs that I had been having at the BabyCenter birth forums. I really shouldn't read this stuff before bed, because it gets me so riled up. (As I lay there trying to get to sleep, I kept telling myself, 'Just think about shoes....just think about shoes...." LOL)

Remember Dr. So and So? You know, the one I said sounded pretty fair and stuff? Yeah. Well, I change my mind. He's a jerk, just like all the rest. He posted on the message board that he 'welcomed healthy debate,' but I think he avoids it - runs from it - just like everyone else. And in the end, he won another mom over to a repeat c-section, even after all the facts and differing opinions had been offered.

Granted, if you've done your homework about VBAC, and it's still not a choice or risk you choose to accept, that's great. I can totally respect that, as I am sort of in the same boat: if I have another baby, I'm not sure I want to try another VBAC after two sections. And I know that plenty of women have done it before. But for me, at least, I think it would depend heavily on my care provider: if I found someone pro-VBAC who would take me on as a patient and support me physically and emotionally, my mindset would no doubt be completely different. As would this mom's, if, say, Dr. Stuart Fischbein were the contributing doctor and not Dr. So and So.

But if your 'research' consists of Dr. So and So's one-sided drivel, the horror stories of gum-chewing girlfriends and the 'pregnancy bible' (GAG) What to Expect When You're Expecting, then you are ignorant.

There. I've said it. That I think some women truly are ignorant. And arrogant, in assuming that crunchy birth advocates are wrong or crazy; and especially so in assuming that nothing could ever happen to me, because I trust my doctor. Why listen to the opposing side? I know all the facts; I asked my doctor! What could possibly go wrong?

I'm sure I come off as arrogant to some in my fervor over birth. But I think the difference is this: I'm not trying to suggest that I know more than any doctor, that's for sure. They do know a lot, but it's a matter of what they're willing to share with others. That is where Birth Nerds like me are different. We want to share with you both sides, instead of the biased garbage you'll hear from your physician. He only wants you to hear what he wants you to hear. We are all told, by our friends, family and doctors, how different we are as women, how different our pregnancies are, as we waddle through those nine-plus months. Then, when we get to labor and delivery - BAM - suddenly we're all the same! And yet, when a doctor gets a patient who isn't, he treats them the same as the 100 other 'ignorant' women who walked in the door that morning. Dear Doctor, please stop treating me the same as those women who want to be induced, just want that baby out of there, looking at you with stars in their eyes as they worship you like you're God. I worship one God, and let me tell you, you're not Him.

I posted a huge diatribe in response to Ms. Board Owner at how insulted I was that she assumed that I knew less because I was just a patient, or that I was trying to assert that I knew more than a doctor. And this is the response I got from Dr. So and So:

Here is an interesting plan by an Ob doc from the state of Washington
Do a VBAC if a patient or her insurance agree to pay the true cost of attempted VBAC.

Catastrophic rupture during VBAC occurs ~1 in 200

Average liability pay out of $750K not counting the cost of litigating the law suits, average > $3750 per attempted VBAC

Average labor ~ 11 hours and would cost an additional $8250 to cover the cost of dropping all other Ob/Gyn care & being immediately available to perform emergency C/S. This could be more or less depending on the actual duration of labor & cost @ $750/hour.

If C/S was required, that would be an additional charge.
Healthy debate, my ass.

I haven't responded, and don't know if I will, but considered saying this: "Save your money and hire a midwife and have the birth you deserve."


Heather Griffith Brewer said...

AMEN!!! *angels are singing*
The biggest issue I have with the final argument and all this "attempt" shit is the fact that the ONLY time that a c-section should occur is in an emergency. So their availability should not fluctuate from one mom to the next. What is the cost when a women tries it alone at home and things end up all kinds of wrong? The current attitude is chasing women into their homes (which I have no issue with if you are responsible about it). I'm really not sure what it would take to make me deliver in a hospital again...I'm thinking an angel of God would have to be involved.
As far as the worshipping goes...are you kidding me?? I am amazed at how many women care less about who delivers their child than they do about the car that they buy. And many women return to the same idiot who traumatized them in the first place!
Sing it sister!

The Deranged Housewife said...

Exactly! My two sections I considered emergent (but not an emergency) - because no doctor with ten miles of the hospital knew how to deliver a breech baby vaginally. I remember thinking when they asked me if I wanted the doctor to deliver my daughter - I said no, and found out later he was attending a c/s. I felt like she had offered her body up for me so that I could be left alone to deliver... !

I have said the same thing on the related post (I think): that women know all about the brands of refrigerators, for instance, and where to get the best deal, etc. but they know little about what their bodies can do when allowed to, or what their options are in birth. It's nauseating sometimes!

On a side note, I just read a very awesome story on the I-CAN blog about a mom who had an unassisted HBAC less than a year after a catastrophic c/s. Wonderful stuff and so empowering. SOme of these stories I actually *feel* like I've been through it, the amazing feeling of delivering in your own home, in a comfortable setting, where you are just LEFT ALONE (if need be). It must be so surreal and liberating.

On one of my posts I said I didn't think I could ever do a home birth - but I never explained why. We live in campus housing, so it's not really *our* house, and there is no sense of permanence. I would feel horrible if we ended up moving after something like that, like I left a piece of myself and my birth behind and could never return to it. I'm such a mush. :P

Heather Griffith Brewer said...

It's the psychology that a hospital creates that concerns me. I think women in labor go in and even when they "believe" that birth is normal and natural...after a short time in the hospital they begin to question that, when staff is messing with monitors and asking (brows furrowed) about pain and this and that. I think women begin to doubt themselves and the process, and begin to wonder "Maybe this isn't normal?"
I am so glad you replied to my comment--having a baby at home is amazing. And after having a "bad" hospital experience I think it is even more powerful.
I understand your sentimentality, I delivered my daughter at home in base housing, and the same thoughts kinda crossed my mind...but how sentimental can you get about a hospital room? It's the experience that you keep, and making it your own is life altering.
You can read about my homebirth here:
Keep up the writing, I love it!