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Women Speak Out About What's Gone Wrong with the United States Birthing System

  1. #9
    miran is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2011
    hong kong

    and what if a woman wants intervention ? as in what if it's an educated, well informed, thought through decision ? am a little perturbed by this generalization that women are "going through this" because they dont know their rights.

    howardcoombs and 2010-NewDad like this.

  2. #10
    MommyTo3 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2008

    I come from a country where 30% has a home birth. I would never want that. I prefer a hospital birth with an OB instead of a midwife (had one for the first 30 weeks with my first pregnancy until I moved continents). I had an epidural both times and was constrained to the bed pretty much and it was my choice and I was fine with it. Again, I had doctors who were very much pro-natural birth so I had my 3 children natural including the twins, with one breech. I wouldn't opt for a c/s without a medical reason. But other than that, I made my choices, and accepted the circumstances that came with it. Everybody makes different choices, I was happy with mine, and would do it again.

    I understand where thanka2 is coming from but also tend to agree with miran, that I did educate myself, but pretty much prefer certain ways of intervention. And that's fine too.

    2010-NewDad and miran like this.

  3. #11
    charade is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2010


    You are right that a lot of women in HK would prefer a more medicalised birth than less. I think the reason the c-section rate is high here is because it’s a happy marriage between women who believe it will be less painful, less scary than labour and doctors who like the controllability and convenience of it. So the doctors might be pushing c-secs, it’s not a hard sell; they have a ready audience in women looking for a way to avoid labour.

    C-secs are one thing but I don’t see why more women wouldn’t get behind more comfortable labour positions, for example. My perception is that just on this forums there are plenty of women who would support more flexibility in labour positions.

    I’m not sure whether getting women to insist on their rights at the time of labour is the way to go. For first time mums, there’s so much else to contend with and if you’re not the confrontational type in the first place – which a lot of women aren’t – gearing up for that is going to stress you out in a way that’s not going to be beneficial to the whole process. That’s why I feel that maybe we should be insisting on the rights before we go into labour. And the only way for that to happen is for the HA to change its policies.

    I also do see that the HA has its constraints. It may be easier to hook women up to a monitor and monitor them from elsewhere than to have someone come in and check on the woman every so often – they are understaffed as it is. They also face liabilities if anything goes wrong and so they tend to play it safe, as the article you linked to shows. Will we waive our rights to sue if we insist on doing it our way?

    Although slow to change, the HA has changed. I think not too long ago dads were not allowed into the delivery rooms. One of my friends who delivered at Kwong Wah said they had a birthing ball – you could only use it if you had done their antenatal prep course though. They are also very pro-breastfeeding which I don’t think was always the case. I’d be interested to know how these changes came about. Was it just some bright spark in the HA who said lets institute this progressive change or was there pressure from the outside?

    I’m not sure if we’d be able to drum up enough public pressure to influence any change with a signature campaign but I think it’s easier than expecting women to stand up for their rights at the time of labour because the number who will do that will be even less.

    The obvious question would be why don’t I organise the campaign. The reason is I’m not sure where exactly I stand. I’m definitely all for more flexible positions during labour but not sold on home births. I’m also not very anti-medication and at the end of the day, I’d like to trust my doctor to make a good decision based on what I hope is more extensive study than my one year of reading up. But I am for better communication and answering the mother’s questions clearly. (The doctor on call when I delivered literally said not a single word to me except for a parting shot – “you aren’t in that much pain”. The problem is that even if I want to lodge a complaint against her I don’t know her name!) Bottomline – I don’t think I’m passionate enough to organise something.

    Anyway, even if we don’t get a campaign going, it would be good if each of us who delivers at the HA would write in to them about our experience, the positive and negative. Maybe if they get enough individual letters asking for a change, it might give someone in the HA sympathetic to the cause some ammo.

    2010-NewDad and miran like this.

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