In the pursuit of learning, every day something is acquired.
In the pursuit of Tao, every day something is dropped.

Less and less is done.
Until non-action is achieved.
When nothing is done, nothing is left undone.

The world is ruled by letting things take their course.
It cannot be ruled by interfering.

Tao Te Ching

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Birth Trauma Groups

Hi Everyone,

I have noticed recently that support groups have emerged to help women de-brief and move on from traumatic birth experiences.

I see such a need for this kind of group within our society, where until fairly recently
birthing horror stories were built up and passed from generation to generation leaving many pregnant women, including me, generally afraid of giving birth and ready to reach for whatever drugs were on offer.

The cyclical nature of this situation (the epidural inhibiting the natural desire to push, which leads to synthetic oxytocin, leading to stronger contractions, and more intervention...) is well documented now, and perfectly describes my first birthing experience.

Fear and fear alone led me to go down that path, and I can now see that those who told me their enhanced, negative stories of birth were actually not supported in their own recovery from an over medicalised birth experience.

In the past, women were sent into the labour ward, left to labour (often in stirrups) without a partner's support and understandably traumatised by their experience. The fact that women were instructed to lay in a position of powerlessness, which directly fights against the help of gravity is totally irrational and must have left a residue of anger and betrayal in many women.

How wonderful then that mothers are supporting mothers to heal from these experiences and assisting each other to learn how to give birth in an empowered way. If more women heal, our daughters can learn that birth is a natural process which is sometimes unpredictable, but generally organic and manageable with support.

The rise in popularity of the doula and the respect given to mid-wives is another hopeful sign that we are moving back to beautiful birthing and empowerment of the birthing mother.

Talk Soon, Cynthia x