These birth videos are dedicated to the fight against non-evidence based maternity care. In 2008, the US cesarean section rate climbed to 31.8%, more than double the rate deemed acceptable by the World Health Organization. In far too many cases, a first c-section is performed in the name of "cephalopelvic disproportion" (CPD - a baby too big to fit vaginally), "failure to progress" (in reality "failure to wait") or for other such reasons unsupported by research evidence.
The first selection is a montage of birth videos complied by ICAN, the International Cesarean Awareness Network, from women who received a c-section after their OBs told them their babies were too big for vaginal birth. All of these women went on to vaginally birth babies of the same or much larger sizes.
The abbreviations in the video refer to the following:
VBAC = vaginal birth after
HBAC = homebirth after cesarean
HBA3C = homebirth after 3 cesareans
UBA2C = unassisted birth after 2 cesareans
Overwhelmingly, most cases of CPD are due to non-evidence based practices, including limited mobility during labor, augmentation with pitocin, artificial rupture of membranes, pushing flat on the back, lack of knowledge in recognizing and correcting malpositioned babies, and time limits on labor. This video is attests to the fact that when allowed to birth in evidence-based ways, rates of CPD and resulting c-sections will decrease.
The next selection is dedicated to all the people who tout, "the most important thing is a healthy mom and a healthy baby". This is a given. It's a non-negotiable, understood fact that this is paramount to all mothers and families. However, it is completely irresponsible to ignore the emotional as well as physical scars that can be inflicted on a mother who is subjected to a needless cesarean section.
This video captures the hurt these women have endured by undergoing needless c-sections, of their view of their bodies as "broken" and even their battle with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after their c-sections. It also reveals the healing force that their vaginal births, that they were told their bodies weren't capable of having, had on their hearts, minds, and souls.
These women gained back their trust in their bodies and in birth. They did not gain back trust in the maternity system which failed to protect them. In short, two powerful childbirth videos with an equally powerful message.
Page Last Modified by Catherine Beier, MS, CBE
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