This week in homebirth idiocy


Is there any limit to the narcissism and stupidity of these women?

1. Planning an unassisted childbirth (UC):

I believe that I can birth this baby unassisted, safely and happily. I have been trying to convince my DH, but he told me he will never be on board. Planning to birth while he sleeps or is at work. I’m sad that he can’t support me, but I know what this baby needs.

2. The baby is struggling to breathe and the mother is expressing colostrum into her mouth “just so she’d get a taste since we wouldn’t be able to breastfeed any time soon.” If the mother were struggling to breathe would she find it helpful for someone to squirt liquid into her mouth?

Her baby was transferred by helicopter to a NICU (without her) and this is what the mother is thinking:

On the way home from the birthing center, I kept saying, “I did it. I gave birth! Naturally!”

3. After an uncomplicated vaginal birth induced in the hospital at nearly 43 weeks:

… Although I had a mostly natural unmedicated vaginal birth with the most natural birth friendly doctor in the state, it still wasn’t the birth I had planned or wanted for my daughter. To this day, I feel guilty that Dinah didn’t get to choose her own birthday. I’m afraid I may have let her down by having her birth induced.

4. A homebirth midwife wails about the “horrors of midwifery licensing“:

… There are time limits on how long you can labor, or how long you can push, or on the size of your baby. If she ignores any of these rules and regulations, she is (again) subject to disciplinary action. But more importantly, if she ignores the rules (and many do)…then what happens to the “licensing equals safety” argument? How is she a “safe midwife” if there is blatant disregard for the rules that have been deemed to make birth “safe”?

You can’t make this stuff up!

228 Responses to “This week in homebirth idiocy”

  1. August 17, 2018 at 1:51 am #

    This is so depressing.

    • RudyTooty
      August 17, 2018 at 8:25 am #

      Yes. and five years on, we could probably find similarly stupid examples for *this* week in homebirth idiocy.

      Every week.

  2. stacey
    June 18, 2013 at 5:41 pm #

    No, you cannot make this stuff up. This is what you get when privileged women follow “all natural” nonsense and NCB. TOO SAD.

  3. Mary
    June 11, 2013 at 12:54 pm #

    I write my blog for myself and for those who are close to me, and I certainly didn’t anticipate or appreciate being featured on this harassing, ignorant and fear-based website. I do not need to defend my choices or feelings or how important birth is (the destination as well as the journey), but as a woman, a mother and a feminist, I just can’t not respond. However, my response to the negative comments I received is too long to put here, so please visit my latest blog entry:

    • Amy Tuteur, MD
      June 11, 2013 at 1:00 pm #

      Here’s the single biggest problem with your reponse.

      You didn’t do any research. You read stuff written by laypeople for other laypeopel. Most of it is made up propaganda.

      Research involves scientific papers. If you didn’t read them, you didn’t do research. What you did is the equivalent of reading a creationist book to learn about evolution. That’s why so many of your claims are flat out false.

      • Eddie
        June 12, 2013 at 2:17 am #

        I particularly like the point you added in an edit: “What you did is the equivalent of reading a creationist book to learn about evolution.” That’s a highly apt analogy.

        • KarenJJ
          June 12, 2013 at 2:52 am #

          I like that one too. LIke reading astrology and thinking you know a lot about astronomy and telling astronomists what to do.

    • Captain Obvious
      June 11, 2013 at 10:29 pm #

      I don’t understand, you write on the Internet but only want it for yourself and people close to you? You need to choose your source of communication better. Flaws in your opinion and your preaching shall generate responses. If you do not like that, then get off the Internet, go private, or defend your opinions.

      • Squillo
        June 12, 2013 at 12:03 am #

        In other words, what part of “publish” or “post” is unclear?

      • Eddie
        June 12, 2013 at 2:07 am #

        To be fair, I can understand those who publish a blog expecting only family and friends to ever see it. It can be an efficient way of communicating with widely-separated family members, for example. I have a rarely-used twitter account that I have only advertised to family. To my surprise, some of my friends discovered it. No biggie.

        Certainly, a risk of blogging on the open internet is that of being “discovered.” However, in the crushing weight of the sheer number of unadvertised blogs that are out there, I think it’s easy for many to feel anonymous, and to be surprised when receiving a sudden rush of visitors, friendly or otherwise.

        Also, to be fair, Mary did defend her opinions! While I don’t agree with her facts (which are primarily from lay sources), she pointed everyone at a very clear defence of her opinions.

        • KarenJJ
          June 12, 2013 at 2:50 am #

          I wonder if she’ll be back again? Or whether she’ll read further? It’s hard to judge on the internet whether someone is open to new ideas and might enjoy a challenge of reading something contrary to their own ideas or whether their mind is firmly made up and they have no interest beyond what they already believe.

          Squillo posted in another thread about the Miranda defence, it was almost like a hierachy of ‘woo’ thinking on her link to the wiki. The ‘what’s the harm?’ crowd, the ‘strong preference to the “natural” anti-doctor’ crowd and the “we are being controlled by lizard overlords” conspiracy theorists. I don’t know how much movement happens between the levels. Did Meryl Dorey start out fairly mildly or was she always a ‘lizard person’ and anti-vax was her vehicle?

          Do people like Dinah’s mum sit in the first, where I can imagine a ‘oops now I feel like a fool’ moment like I’ve had myself, or is she covering up a ‘lizard overlords’ mentality. Is it possible to start out at the first level of dabbler, and then spend years reading lovingly the fairy tales spun around homebirth before sliding down into the lizard people territory? Does anyone ever move out of the ‘lizard people’ conspiracy theory mentality?

          Wonder where she’s at and what she’s thinking.

          • Eddie
            June 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm #

            I also wonder where she’s at and what she’s thinking. It’s so easy on the Internet — with so many sources of information — to stay in one’s echo chamber and never question assumptions. All you hear is, “Yes, you’re right. You’re so wise for holding the right beliefs. Here is why the other side is wrong.” And when that isn’t balanced by the other side, it can be incredibly convincing, no matter what woo one is into.

            I deliberately seek out opinions that differ from mine. Most people do not do that, and are not comfortable directly challenging their own beliefs, which I think is unfortunate.

        • Captain Obvious
          June 12, 2013 at 7:32 am #

          I guess I just didn’t see her defense very well with her quotes decades old blog posts from salon as research or old books from lay midwives. She quoted the flawed Johnson and Davies research without naming it by name. And like any knowledgable researcher would do, she didn’t take some of the research papers on Medline that are easy to find that contradict her stance and write a rebuttal to these papers defending her point. All she did was quote the echo chamber and use decades old blog comments.

          • Eddie
            June 12, 2013 at 12:53 pm #

            I’m not saying that her defense was a logically or medically sound one, nor that I agreed with it. Just that, to be fair, she did write one.

            It’s important to me to criticize people only for things they actually did (or didn’t do). It’s all too human and too easy to put people into buckets and then criticize the individuals for things that other people in that bucket have done. I hear it all the time in politics, for example.

            I’m human; I fall into this trap too. I make a big effort to avoid it, and I make a big effort to corral my pride when I catch myself in this trap (or when someone else catches me) and fess up, apologize if appropriate, and move on.

            I also attempt (and do not always succeed) to treat others with respect, especially when I think they are in the wrong. This is because I am not any better than anyone else. I’m human. I make the same kinds of mistakes. And when I am wrong, I hope to be treated with respect. Not kid gloves. Just respect. It’s important for me to treat others the way I want to be treated.

            For me, this is partly about humility. I don’t think I am inherently better than anyone else. (I also don’t think I am worse than others. Humility != low self esteem.) Being smart, well educated, knowledgeable, these things are valuable but don’t make me a better human being than anyone else. I tire of and roll my eyes at the faux humility we encounter so often, where someone mouths the words but clearly does believe they are better than others. That’s not humility. That’s just posturing.

      • Lizzie Dee
        June 12, 2013 at 9:03 am #

        I think I can understand that writing on the internet is sometimes a bit like thinking out loud – and that the response to being overheard can sometimes be a bit unexpected. I am a bit less convinced that the post in question was written with her mother in mind as reader. It seemed to me to have a different “implied audience” – like – I may have broken some of the sacred tenets of NCB, but here are the reasons why I am still a True Believer, and qualify as a Birth Goddess.

        It kind of boils down to everything was fine but not perfect, so I am entitled to still be critical of hospitals and all they stand for, and bask in the “So sorry’s – amazing mama” feedback.

        If she was really naive enough to think her audience could be restricted in that way, then I have some sympathy for her disillusion.

    • KarenJJ
      June 11, 2013 at 11:34 pm #

      Thanks for that. I read it with interest.

      One clue to your research here is that your references are entirely lay people who actually have no medical training. Henci Goer and Ina May Gaskin amongst them. You’ve lovingly investigated natural childbirth for many years by reading these women who have made a career out of undermining medical advancement in the area of women’s health.

      Judging your post you don’t respect our opinions of these women and their misinformation nor do you understand the science behind some things nor the policies that drive them (I take an off-label drug too). In an effort to continue your research I would suggest taking a bit of time to try and research the alternative side to Ina May Gaskin. Maybe not even here if you don’t like the tone, but check out
      ‘What ifs and fears are welcome’ or ‘Navegazing midwife’ or ’10cm’ or even ‘The learner’ to see some of the issues in women’s health that people have been trying to prevent using modern medicine.

      The ideals in homebirth are really ideal scenarios. They have a dream like quality to them. The challenge is to see them for what they really are. If something does happen to go wrong, what then for your child? Or for you? Is it worth it. You’ve now experienced a hospital birth, perhaps you can look for ways to improve on that experience for yourself and other women so they don’t walk away from the type of critical care that can mean life or death for their babies.

      Good luck.

    • Captain Obvious
      June 12, 2013 at 7:21 am #

      Cytotec has been around for decades. The learning curve if you will has established it’s relative safety. You quote an Ina May article in Salon from 2000. That is 13 years ago. Can you find respected research condemning cytotec since 2010? . In 2007, the WHO Expert Committee on the Selection and Use of Essential Medicines included misoprostol 25-µg tablets to its list and this inclusion will hopefully enable the national essential lists to include low-dose misoprostol for labour induction.
      All induceing agents have been linked to hyperstimulation and many to uterine rupture, including cytotec, pitocin, prepidil, cervadil, even black and blue cohosh and nipple stimulation. Castor oil has even been linked and to causing meconium stained fluid too. After decades of research cytotec has its place among labor induction. According to your logic Da Vinci robotic surgery should never be used for hysterectomy because it takes longer in the OR for beginners and has been linked to more cases of vaginal cuff closure breakdown after the woman’s first attempts got sex after surgery. Well, after the learning curve and surveys done, doctors are either closing the vaginal manually or with bigger bites and we are not seeing as many breakdown in the closures any more. Same with cytotec, following stricter protocols lead to safer inductions. You are one statistic for safe induction with cytotec. According to your logic, water should be banned because it can kill you. College fraternities sometimes haze their pledges by having them drink large amounts of water only to see them die from hyponatremia. So is water that dangerous we need to ban it? Or should we use it appropriately, like cytotec.

      • Eddie
        June 12, 2013 at 12:25 pm #

        This is telling:

        All induceing agents have been linked to hyperstimulation

        So how funny then that only the “out of favor (with NCB folks)” ones get tarred with this brush, while the all-natural ones are perfectly fine. This is what happens when one lives in an echo chamber and rejects out-of-hand anything that disagrees.

      • Crabby Apple
        June 17, 2013 at 3:18 am #

        Captain Obvious – did you miss on the package of Cytotec the words “SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN BY PREGNANT WOMEN”? Just curious. Or was that not obvious enough?

        • KarenJJ
          June 17, 2013 at 3:27 am #

          Just my guess, but wouldn’t it say that because it is an drug that will induce a pregnancy, ie will cause a pregnancy to end, and if you are pregnant then you DON’T want to take it because you want to be pregnant.

          Once you’re 40weeks and all good, then sure – take it.

          Seems perfectly logical to me. Obviously you don’t want to take something that can induce a pregnancy when you are still pregnant and not yet 40weeks.

        • AmyM
          June 17, 2013 at 6:43 am #

          Isn’t Red Raspberry Leaf tea like that too? And Reglan is used off label to induce lactation sometimes? Even though there are warnings not to, since it gets into breast milk and there can be dangerous side effects for the mother. I think a lot of people don’t understand “off label use.”

        • Eddie
          June 18, 2013 at 12:38 am #

          Well sure. If the baby is not yet full term, being induced can be a really bad idea. Therefore, if you want to prevent stomach ulcers in a pregnant women, you need to use a different drug. Isn’t that kind of a “no duh” statement? It’s not like this requires being a rocket scientist or a brain surgeon to figure out.

          You word this as if doctors across the world are routinely doing something they know to be terribly risky by using this drug to induce. If doctors were routinely using this drug to prevent stomach ulcers in pregnant women, now that would be malpractice.

    • stacey
      June 18, 2013 at 5:40 pm #

      Then why not put a PASSWORD on your blog? Then it is private. Otherwise, its fair game. Sorry.

      There is nothing “fear based about this blog. You have been living in NCB land too long.

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  5. schnitzelbank
    June 10, 2013 at 11:03 pm #

    My Darling Dinah,
    I’m so sorry I didn’t Trust Birth and let you pick your birthday. I flagellate my uterus monthly as a reminder of my failure as your mother. However, this does nothing for you, so Dickie and I got you a pony.

  6. I don't have a creative name
    June 10, 2013 at 11:00 am #

    This is so depressing.

    The only one who isn’t completely bat shit crazy, the only one who clearly values the life of the baby above the Church of Teh Nachural, is #3. Her I just feel sorry for, because while she’s not stupid enough to risk her baby’s life, and DID choose an OB and ultimately chose to keep her baby safe, she’s bought into the crap enough to let it make her utterly miserable. She’s letting it ruin her experience of mothering an infant and rob her of contentment. I hope she comes around and realizes that her daughter isn’t going to give two craps about it unless SHE teaches her that she should value teh nachural above life and health.

    The other 3, I don’t even know what to say, beyond them just being genuinely stupid and selfish, especially #1. I simply cannot FATHOM not letting my hubs have any say in how his baby is born! How can she care so little how he feels? Guess he’s just a sperm donor and now that she has what she wants from him, to hell with him and his feelings.

    • Eddie
      June 10, 2013 at 11:15 am #

      For #1, you have it backwards. She has a special way of knowing and she knows that UC is fine. She knows her body. Hubby, on the other hand, rejects her special way of knowing and therefore rejects all that is pure and special and womanly about her. Therefore, he deserves to be left out of the decision making.

      OK, I can’t take that seriously enough to go on.

      Taking a look, I don’t know if this was added later to her post or was there all along, but it’s telling. IOW, “I know I’m right so don’t try to convince me with evidence.”

      I don’t need any comments about how it’s not safe, thanks! I’m getting these comments from DH so if you don’t have any positive experiences to share, please DON’T share.

  7. June 9, 2013 at 5:57 am #

    Great stuff here. The information and the detail were just

  8. June 9, 2013 at 12:36 am #

    The really idiotic thing is that there is a belief system (NCB) that encourages this kind of approach to childbirth – and the sad thing is the real moms and babies who are harmed. It’s like belief systems that encourage racism, sexism or violence – they deserve to be unmasked and ridiculed.

    • Lizzie Dee
      June 9, 2013 at 7:23 am #

      I think your observation here is spot on. And, in a sense, when the belief system that is NCB really takes hold, it does in effect encourage all three of those ills to an extent – with an unhelpful form of sexism (or misogyny), and a form of violence done to the bodies of women and babies.

      Things get muddled because there are separate things that
      need to be attacked. The belief that natural/unmedicated is an unmitigated good, that it is more easily accomplished away from hospitals, and the completely false distorted versions of scientific fact
      that are used to bolster the appeal of the first two.

      It is difficult to argue that an efficient normal (easy) birth is not better all round than one that gets complicated and needs some level of intervention. But the belief that this is something you can choose and achieve by common sense means is the cause of the trouble. The problem, and the sleight of hand, is in defining rather more exactly what is meant by “natural”. I have read on here of women who have had 36 hour painful difficult labours at 42
      weeks in hospitals. I am not a doctor;not even particularly well informed, but my response to that is “What were they
      thinking of?” Just how good is the research that says lengthy labours, ignoring the statistical risks of post dates is a good idea? I read recently that some extensive research is about to be undertaken in to just what happens to a baby’s brain in those late stages of development, during labour, immediately after. About time, is my
      response to that. If a baby perks up and turns pink “eventually” is it really OK to assume that everything is now just lovely? And if research of this kind does show that the hazards of natural vaginal birth as currently practised is not always optimal for the baby, then what? Will expensive, inconvenient and unpopular measures be taken? And what about the mothers? How many first time mothers come through their wonderful natural labours entirely unscathed ? Does NCB have much to say on the risks multips run? When I read “I have had three lovely homebirths…” and it is obvious that more children are planned, is relying on continuing to be a Birth Goddess all that wise?

      NCB makes much of women being informed, and I have no quarrel with that. Being more assertive, being aware, taking care, arguing
      against interventions if you can hold a VALID opinion backed by facts on the need for them – all of that is good. But women need good, reliable information, and that is not what NCB provides. Not
      always what hospitals provide either – so why not start there? I might not have too much of a quarrel with an approach that encourages women to trust their instincts, know their bodies – so long as those
      instincts have been sharpened through solid knowledge, reliable education and an instinct for self-preservation (I think that might be natural) not the mystical clapTRAP of Trust Birth.

      Modern medicine does have to predicated on the basis of You
      Can’t Win Em All. But in my own extremist view, there are still too many avoidable disasters, in and out of hospitals, and NCB contributes to them big time. I would like to see a whole lot more concern and detail about why they still happen.

  9. desiree
    June 8, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

    What the heck, I left a nice comment on #2 up there’s birth story and she deleted it! I just said that my first was hospitalized for 3 days when she was 12 days old, and I had a tough time with it. Not right away, but I started having panic attacks and crying episodes when she was 3 or 4 months old, and it took a few years to go away. I told her I wish I’d seen someone about it, and I wished someone had encouraged me to, because looking back, it was a lot to process on my own. Sheesh, praise and admiration only I guess!

    Well, at least she read it. If she has trouble later, I hope she remembers that she doesn’t have to pretend to be okay if she’s not.

    • Eddie
      June 8, 2013 at 11:15 pm #

      Funny, these “strong” people who cannot tolerate the slightest or even gentlest dissent. For whatever people say about Dr Amy (and boy do they say a lot of things!) she very clearly has the ego strength to permit any response, no matter how hostile, to remain posted on this blog.

      Sad that they cannot imagine or understand how that makes them appear to anyone outside their echo chamber.

  10. Sarah
    June 8, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    You “let Dinah down” because she didn’t get to choose her own birthday? Seriously? I can guarantee that Dinah will not give two shits that she didn’t get to “choose her own birthday.” That’s called projecting your own guilt.

    Quit making things into issues. Those aren’t issues.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa
      June 8, 2013 at 10:55 am #

      You can see Dinah on her Sweet 16…

      “Damn it, Mom! My Sweet 16 Birthday is on a Wednesday, and not a Saturday. Now my Sweet 16 party is not going be until 3 days AFTER my birthday, and I will get my new convertible 3 days late. Why did you get induced and not let me be born when I friggin wanted to!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hate you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

      • Jennifer2
        June 8, 2013 at 5:05 pm #

        Two possible responses to this: 1) “Dearest Dinah, you were 3 weeks past your due date. I know, I know, babies don’t have a predetermined “date” but the risks of stillbirth increase so much the longer you gestate that I didn’t want to risk it. If you had been stillborn, you would never have gotten that god-awful glittery unicorn sweater from your great-aunt Sally last year, but you would also not be getting a car this year. So shut your ungrateful face.” 2) “Sweet Dinah, if I had waited for you to pick your birthday, you would have been born later. You would still have to wait for your car. And because you clearly have not mastered some basic math skills, perhaps now is a good time to discuss that C- you got in geometry last semester and whether it might be good incentive to hold off on giving you the car until you’ve pulled that math grade up into the B range.”

    • Squillo
      June 8, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

      Makes me wonder what she would say about the many babies who apparently “choose” birthdates that are incompatible with life. Are they tiny people with suicidal tendencies?

      • Eddie
        June 8, 2013 at 11:08 pm #

        Obviously in those cases the mother did something wrong, some intervention or bad foods or lack of “right living.” Funny how fault works with these folks, wanting to blame people for things that are actually beyond their control, and wanting to hold people blameless for stupid things they do that are within their control.

        • Squillo
          June 8, 2013 at 11:22 pm #

          That’s it exactly. It goes along with believing one can control things that are inherently not controlable–like when your baby gets born–while eschewing the things that provide actual control, like being in a hospital where one can choose (or not) interventions.

      • Prolifefeminist
        June 9, 2013 at 12:34 am #

        Or like what about my 31 weeker who I forced to be born so we didn’t both die of preeclampsia?

        I hold my breath as I wonder if he’ll someday be angry at me for choosing his birthday for him just so we both could live.

    • Jessica
      June 8, 2013 at 10:47 pm #

      Yeah, I don’t get it. My mom was induced with me and I never ever felt like she’d robbed me of something. On the contrary, since her first pregnancy was a postdates stillbirth I think I probably came to realize it was the best decision she could have made.

    • Dr Kitty
      June 9, 2013 at 7:14 am #

      Or the babies like me, who seem unable to choose their own birthdays.
      My mother’s due date was April Fools day.
      She gets Mittelschmertz, so she was damn sure of the dates.

      Nothing happened.
      On the night of the 14th, her waters broke.
      Nothing happened.
      On the night of the 15th she went into hospital-cervix closed, high head, waters gone. Given a prostaglandin pessary.
      At 8am, pit started.
      By 3:45 pm, dilated to 3cm, in a lot of pain and deep decels on the strip.

      I was born by CS, with mum under general anaesthetic, before 4pm

    • Sue
      June 9, 2013 at 8:11 am #

      Better to be robbed of choice of birthday than robbed of a few neurons while the placenta degenerates.

    • Karen in SC
      June 11, 2013 at 8:56 am #

      What grown person even knows what their due date was? I don’t and my mother never mentioned any of the due dates she had for her five children. I may have had an idea for my baby sister, since I was ten years old, but it was obviously not an important fact to retain.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa
        June 11, 2013 at 9:21 am #

        Of course, Karen. Duh, as they say.

        Absolutely the ONLY way that Dinah would have any problem with “not choosing her due dates” is if she is taught to do so.

        It’s just like moms who got induced or had a c-section never realized their bodies “failed’ until someone informed them of it.

        Of course Dinah will have a problem with not being able to choose her birthday if you teach her that you were wrong in not letting her choose her birthday.

      • Eddie
        June 11, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

        (raising hand) Ooooo! Pick me! Pick me!

        But the only reason I know is because my mother referred many times in my childhood to my being born “four weeks early.” I finally asked, as an adult, when I was supposed to be born. Turns out I was born 26 days before my due date, but still almost a week after the water broke.

        My mother was keenly aware of when I was born because of how close it was to my parents’ wedding. My being born four weeks early made it look even worse. In the 1960s, it was considered a big deal to have been conceived out of wedlock, even if you were born into it.

        Thus, my knowing what my due date was is such a special case that it proves your rule. Our youngest was born 23 days early, but it’s just not a topic of conversation.

      • Ainsley Nicholson
        June 12, 2013 at 9:34 am #

        I can’t even remember the due dates for my kids.

  11. Lena
    June 8, 2013 at 1:28 am #

    Is Dr. Marianne Bryan an MD or is she like Rixa with a PhD in something completely unrelated to science or medicine?

    I know PhD’s have earned the title, but it irks the hell out of me when they call themselves “doctor” in this context. It’s deliberately misleading.

    • Bombshellrisa
      June 8, 2013 at 1:32 am #

      “Since I was a young child, I have been fascinated by the working of the human body. Through several research experiences during my college years and then working in a research lab for a couple years afterwards, I realized that what I really love is to be a part of scientific discovery, especially in understanding the working of the mammalian immune system. This led me to pursue and complete my doctorate degree in immunology at the University of Pittsburgh and to continue to pursue basic cellular immunology research in my current position as a post-doc fellow at the University of Washington. Long term, my goals are to develop my own research program within the field of immunology, to interact and collaborate with colleagues, and to teach students, as I find sharing what I’ve learned to be both a highly motivating and a rewarding experience.”


      Immunology, experimental biology

      • staceyjw
        June 8, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

        Is she anti vaxx too? Just because you have education does not mean you cannot fall headlong into WOO.

        • Bombshellrisa
          June 8, 2013 at 5:09 pm #

          I think she is headlong in the woo and trying to bring her brand of woo into the general population via her education.

        • realityycheque
          June 8, 2013 at 10:50 pm #

          I once went to a GP who wanted to pull me off my (much needed) medication and put me on homeopathics; he also tried to get me into kinesiology.

          Having a PhD doesn’t make a person immune to woo or mean that they share beliefs with the rest of the scientific community. It’s so important to keep up to date with the literature and to keep your knowledge fresh.

          • Eddie
            June 9, 2013 at 1:34 am #

            I really don’t get belief in homeopathy. The merest little bit of chemistry is all that is necessary to know that with common dilutions, there is not one molecule of active ingredient. Anyone who has taken high school chemistry and paid even a little bit of attention should be able to figure that out.


            Yet, so many people are duped by this snake oil. The same people who distrust “big pharma” instinctively trust “big alterna” which of course is just trying to make a buck, but with even less responsibility than pharmaceuticals.

            When you mention “placebo effect” to a supporter of homeopathy, they don’t take it well.

          • Sue
            June 9, 2013 at 8:18 am #

            Homeopathy is not only placebo but also a huge financial scam. A “remedy” that costs $15 to $20 for a little 15-20 ml dropper bottle of water and/or alcohol is a greater rip-off than “Big Pharma” could even aspire to.

          • KarenJJ
            June 9, 2013 at 10:31 am #

            My favourite homeopathy news story was when they had to recall a brand of homeopathic teething tablets because they actually contained something besides sugar (belladonna).

          • Box of Salt
            June 9, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

            FDA Issues Consumer Safety Alert
            Hyland’s Teething Tablets may pose a risk to children

          • The Bofa on the Sofa
            June 10, 2013 at 11:32 am #

            This is one of the funniest (sadest) parts of homeopathy. OK, you can get the odd poisonous version, but otherwise, there is little possible in terms of quality control.

            Suppose you go to a store and buy a 30C concoction of something. How do you know that is what it is? How does ANYONE know that is what it is, aside from the manufacturer’s promise that they did it? Not at all. In fact, they CAN’T know, because a 30C dilution is indistinguishable from water. When I buy a 300 mg ibuprofen, I can send it to the lab to see how close to 300 mg it is. When I buy a 30C homeopathic dilution, I don’t know if it is 30C, or 20C, or 100C, or water. Of course, it really doesn’t matter, since none of them do anything, but for true believers, it should be a real problem.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa
            June 10, 2013 at 11:36 am #

            BTW, here is my favorite quote about homeopathy, from Ben Goldacre

            “How does a water molecule know how to forget every other molecule it’s seen before? How does it know to treat my bruise with its memory of arnica, rather than a memory of Isaac Asimov’s faeces? I wrote this in a newspaper once, and a homeopath complained to the Press Complaints Commission. It’s not about the dilution, he said: it’s the succession. You have to bang the flask of water briskly ten times on a leather and horsehair surface, and that’s what makes the water remember a molecule. Because I did not mention this, he explained, I had deliberately made homeopaths sound stupid. This is another universe of foolishness.”

            The funny thing about this is that I’m not sure that the believers would actually get it.

      • Eddie
        June 8, 2013 at 2:25 pm #

        Interestingly, from that profile, I cannot identify whether she has an MD or not. Can one attend medical school and get a degree that is not an MD? Clearly, I know very little about medical school. 🙂 Does a PhD in immunology imply an MD?

        Can you be a PhD medical researcher without first getting an MD? If so, is this common? uncommon? normal?

        • Kalacirya
          June 8, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

          Yes, many medical schools offer other graduate level programs. MS and PhD level biomedical type degrees usually. I have a friend who attended our local medical school and got an MS in cardiovascular sciences.

        • Lena
          June 8, 2013 at 2:37 pm #

          There’s a type of medical school where you get a DO instead of an MD. but they’re the same thing for all intents and purposes. They go through the same residencies, take the same boards, etc.

          A PhD does not imply an MD, and you can be a medical researcher without an MD, you just can’t work with human subjects.

          • Eddie
            June 8, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

            Good point about DO. I forget about that distinction. The DOs I’ve met act in every way like the MDs I’ve met.

            Thanks for the explanation on the latter point. That makes a lot of sense.

        • la piranha
          June 8, 2013 at 3:51 pm #

          It depends what you mean by medical school. An institution can house medical and pure science programs, but PhD and masters students will have one curriculum and medical students will have another. The only overlap in my medical school was the 1st year immunology class, which we shared with the physician assistant students. None of our didactic curriculum was shared by PhD students, and certainly no PhD students did our 3rd and 4th year clinical rotations. And no, a PhD in immunology does not imply an MD.

          • KarenJJ
            June 8, 2013 at 10:26 pm #

            Some immunologists have PhDs in science and work in research labs, some have medical degrees and have specialised in immunology. Both are called Dr, but on the one with the medical degree is the only one who’d be able to see patients.

            Most of my friends and family with PhDs in a non medical fields do not use the title Dr unless it is amongst professional colleagues (and even then..).

            Some clever cookies have both a medical degree and a PhD. One of my doctors is both and is a real medical nerd and a great doctor. It works well for me as I have a rare immunological issue and it appeals to the scientist as well as the doctor in him.

        • Ainsley Nicholson
          June 8, 2013 at 10:25 pm #

          It is possible for someone to get an MD/PhD (both degrees during the same program of study, meeting the full requirements of both degrees) in the USA, but not common. These MD/PhD recipients will typically identify themselves as such by listing both degrees after their names. A PhD in the life sciences, even if obtained at a school that also has a medical degree program, does not imply an MD.

      • Sue
        June 9, 2013 at 8:16 am #

        Reads to me like a medical scientist, not a clinical doctor. She seems to be studying immunology from a biological point of view, not as a clinical immunologist.

    • Eddie
      June 8, 2013 at 2:19 pm #

      As someone with a PhD, I’ve always found it kind of off-putting and funny whenever someone with one insists on being called, “doctor.” My degree is in physics, which to be fair tends to be uncommonly laid back about this kind of thing. My friends sometimes tease me by calling me “Dr Eddie.” In that context it’s funny.

      If I felt the need to assert that I had a degree, I’d do so by appending the “PhD” suffix to my name. Not by prepending “Doctor,” which as you say is confusing or misleading in many situations.

      • FormerPhysicist
        June 8, 2013 at 2:21 pm #

        Same here. Even to the Physics PhD

      • slandy09
        June 8, 2013 at 3:48 pm #

        My grandfather had a PhD and despised being called “doctor”. He thought the title should only be for actual medical doctors.

      • la piranha
        June 8, 2013 at 3:58 pm #

        My husband has a PhD in biochemistry, and he and his friends/colleagues do not go by “doctor.” It’s only used for jokes and to congratulate new graduates. If he’s working as an instructor, he goes by “professor” or just his first name. I think he would find it very odd if someone in his field insisted on being addressed as “doctor.”

        • Klain
          June 8, 2013 at 7:13 pm #

          My husband works at a university and there people with a PhD are addressed as Doctor until they become an Associate Professor or Professor (after 10-15 years of work in the field) when they are then addressed as Professor.

          • lucy logan
            June 9, 2013 at 5:14 pm #

            what field?

          • Klain
            June 9, 2013 at 6:08 pm #

            English Literature

          • Lena
            June 9, 2013 at 9:38 pm #

            Are you in the UK? I’ve heard that’s the norm there.

          • KarenJJ
            June 9, 2013 at 10:04 pm #

            It’s like this in Australia. Professor is a title reserved for those that are actually Professors (head of departments usually). We called our uni lecturers by their first names, at their request. It felt really strange coming from high school where we didn’t call teachers by their first names. Although I referred to them as Dr Smith or whatever behind their backs 🙂

          • The Bofa on the Sofa
            June 10, 2013 at 11:21 am #

            Apparently, in the UK, Professor is used to refer even to teachers at middle school/secondary boarding schools, regardless of the instructor’s level of education. Shoot, even someone kicked out of school after three years (at age 13) is called “Professor” if they are teaching.


          • Nicola
            June 16, 2013 at 11:41 am #

            This is incorrect. Teachers are not called professor.

          • Klain
            June 9, 2013 at 10:07 pm #

            No, I’m in Australia. But he’s worked in the UK and I think it was the same there.

        • Ashley Wilson
          June 10, 2013 at 3:56 am #

          I actually had an English Lit professor who insisted on being called Dr. or Professor Mallot. The thing though was he was one of the cool professors so we all got causal about his name, and nothing drove him nuttier. If we called him by his first name (or what someone THOUGHT was his first name) he would lose it (though I do think that is rude to do to a prof who hasn’t told you otherwise) and didn’t even like it when we just called him Mallot. It even became part of his introduction to a new class. Even had an exchange with a student: “Hi, my name is Dave but my friends call me Tom.” “Hi Tom, my name is Doctor Mallot but my friends called Professor Mallot.”

      • The Bofa on the Sofa
        June 9, 2013 at 10:28 am #

        With my PhD, I have absolutely earned the right to be called Doctor. Of course, I never expect anyone to call me Dr, and it always sounds weird when they do. If you are going to call me any title, it is obviously going to be Professor, in honor of my hero, Professor Roy Hinckley (you probably know him as just “The Professor from Gilligan’s Island”). He was my idle growing up, and it is an honor to share a title with him.

        “Only an expert can tell them apart, and, fortunately, I happen to know a little bit about bat anatomy.”

        • Box of Salt
          June 9, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

          I attended a graduation ceremony a few weeks ago, and naturally had to wear academic robes. I tried to convince my children that while I was wearing the robes, they had to call me “Doctor Mommy.” They refused.

        • Certified Hamster Midwife
          June 9, 2013 at 4:00 pm #

          At the undergrad college I attended, we referred to the faculty as “Professor so-and-so” and by their first names if they told us to. It’s weird for me to deal with institutions where this isn’t the norm now.

    • realityycheque
      June 8, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

      I think a lot of them know that it’s misleading and do it deliberately to give themselves cred. They’ll boast their opinions on a topic like medicine, making sure everyone knows they’re a “doctor” and it turns out their PhD is in something like Philosophy. The arrogance (to assume that being an expert in one field means that they can even attempt to speak down to an expert in another) is astounding.

      • Eddie
        June 8, 2013 at 11:23 pm #

        I’ve mentioned before… there’s a psych PhD in Hawaii who for decades now has been trying to convince the world’s physicists that our collider experiments (Fermilab, CERN, and so on) are going to cause a transition to a false vacuum that will cause a supernova to occur at the Earth. He is convinced that he is right and that the entire world’s physics community is wrong. It takes very little knowledge of high energy physics to know that far, far higher energy collisions occur in our atmosphere (from cosmic rays) than anything we can create artificially in a collider. But nope, he’s right and everyone else is wrong.

        It’s funny how so many people think their PhD means they’re educated enough to pontificate on any subject as if they were an expert. You even see this with Nobel prize winners, who speak with authority way outside their area of expertise.

  12. thankfulmom
    June 7, 2013 at 9:03 pm #

    #2 When I got steroid shots at 30 weeks I said “Well, better me getting the shots rather than my baby.”

    I felt so bad for my baby needing to be in NICU. Thankful we had the nicu just down the hall and I knew prior to labor that she would be going there. It is just a hard thing to deal with emotionally. I can’t imagine being excited about my birth experience when my baby was struggling to breathe and needed to be transferred to nicu via helicopter.

    • prolifefeminist
      June 8, 2013 at 12:40 am #

      Same here! My last baby was born at 31 weeks after I developed severe preeclampsia. I had a TOLAC while on mag sulfate (blech!), but ended up with a c-section in the end. What kind of “birth experience” I had was the last thing on my mind. The one and only thing on my mind was the two of us coming through the ordeal safely.

      I felt so bad for my little guy, getting poked and prodded and intubated down there in the NICU while I was up on the postpartum floor recovering. I didn’t see him until a day later because I was on the mag drip, but it never crossed my mind to even think about what kind of birth experience we’d had…who thinks of that when things are so critical? I was just grateful that we were both alive and being taken care of by an absolutely amazing medical staff.

      • thankfulmom
        June 8, 2013 at 11:13 am #

        I had pre-e too. What an ordeal, but I sure am thankful for modern medicine!

    • Lizzie Dee
      June 8, 2013 at 5:48 am #

      I can’t imagine going home to sleep. Though I have never laboured, so that may have been the most sensible thing to do.

  13. lucy logan
    June 7, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

    “Marianne BryanJune 7, 2013 at 4:30 PM
    it was amazing to see you really gain strength of purpose as your labor
    progressed. You went from anxious and unsure of how to become a
    mother, to determined and focused. I loved being a part of your
    beautiful daughter’s birth.

    P.S. When I directly asked the
    attending neonatal doctor at UW NICU about the circumstances of Imogen’s
    MAS, he told me that it would have happened at a hospital, just the
    same as in a birth center, she got the mconium deep in her lungs early
    during labor, causing the reaction once she started to breathe. Believe
    me, I questioned him pretty thoroughly to know what was going on! Love,
    Dr. Marianne Bryan”

    is the above comment on the MAS baby from the midwife? or a Dr? Is this something the neonatal Dr would be able to tell?

    • Bombshellrisa
      June 7, 2013 at 8:53 pm #

      Marianne Bryan is a senior fellow in Immunology. It would appear that she needs to learn a little more about patient privacy.

      • lucy logan
        June 7, 2013 at 9:01 pm #

        maybe shes a relative and the blogger isnt her patient? lets hope!?

        • Bombshellrisa
          June 7, 2013 at 9:11 pm #

          I don’t think that it’s her patient, she was mentioned in the blog post as having come in from Seattle to the birth center to be with the mom during labor. So she is a friend-although it seems a little formal to be signing a comment on your friend’s blog “Dr”.

          • Victoria
            June 8, 2013 at 12:35 am #

            I imagine she is signing off that way because there were some comments that have now been deleted that were not “supportive” and she thinks that if she puts her title on there (despite her doctorate having nothing to do with delivering babies) that it will stop people from commenting further because who would want to argue with a doctor who spoke to another doctor?

            That was all one sentence. Maybe it shouldn’t have been!

          • prolifefeminist
            June 8, 2013 at 12:46 am #

            “who would want to argue with a doctor who spoke to another doctor?”


      • Eddie
        June 7, 2013 at 9:02 pm #

        Out of curiosity, how much do the odds of MAS increase at 40+5? Not even a full week overdue. Does this significantly increase the odds?

        I really don’t get the pride about doing it naturally though. It seems like pride about pulling a tooth naturally instead of having it extracted. Or pride about having a bone heal naturally rather than having it set. Or pride about having dental work without anesthesia. I just don’t get what there is to be proud of.

        • Bombshellrisa
          June 7, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

          Maybe it’s because you understand from hearing what your wife went through that there is nothing glorious about being in agony with no options to help with the pain.

    • amazonmom
      June 7, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

      No neonatologist I have ever met would tell a parent that their birth choices or the choices of their birth attendant may have led to their child’s condition. It’s extremely bad taste to do so. The mechanics of mec aspiration are the same no matter where it happens, true.

      • lucy logan
        June 7, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

        im kind of starting to think they should be more honest, as in we cant be sure IN THIS INSTANCE 100% that baby would have been fine in the hospital, BUT here are the ways this might have gone differently. maybe it will help her next or other babies

        • Lizzie Dee
          June 8, 2013 at 5:30 am #

          There aren’t all that many certainties in childbirth, so doctors can’t always say for sure.

          I once read a law report on a negligence case. The mother was diabetic, and got the most appalling treatment. For some reason she never had a scan, scanty ante-natal care, was allowed to go post-dates and had a severely brain damaged child. The hospital accepted liability but denied causation on the grounds that she MIGHT have had a hidden infection they could not be expected to spot. The hospital won. As always with these things, details may have been missing – but no-one is that keen on attributing causation when doing so is very expensive.

      • Eddie
        June 7, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

        The difference between humility and a lack thereof … when my wife had a miscarriage, we thought it might be our fault. Long story, not worth going into. Her Ob said that no, this happens (which I know is true), there is no chance it was our fault.

        I am not convinced that we had absolutely nothing to do with it. I accept that there is a chance the doctor was speaking perfectly honestly. But I also know there is a chance the doctor was being nice, wanting to ease our feelings about something in the past and impossible to repeat and do things differently. Note: This was years ago. We are past this. It is not something that worries us today. We’re not losing sleep over this. It was an early miscarriage.

        However, when homebirthers hear anyone tell them that their child’s injury would have happened exactly the same way in the hospital, they latch onto that as if it is vindication, and go an do things the exact same way again. The thought that the doctor was being nice does not appear to even enter their heads. (I guess in part because of their image of doctors as horrible people only motivated by money, so if a doctor said it and it’s in their favor it MUST be true.)

        Humility. It seems to be binary. Either there, or not at all.

      • amazonmom
        June 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm #

        I wish it wasn’t considered unprofessional to do so sometimes. I am not sure what it will take to convince some families that modern obstetrics and neonatology are not the devil. The families that find this out too late suffer greatly.

      • areawomanpdx
        June 8, 2013 at 2:22 am #

        (a doctor’s perspective on this issue)

        • The Bofa on the Sofa
          June 8, 2013 at 8:18 am #

          There’s a bizarre comment on that post from a CPM student. She claims she didn’t do a CNM because she knows it is hard for CNMs to get malpractice insurance. Huh? Do CPMs ever get malpractice insurance at all? That makes no sense.

          • Squillo
            June 8, 2013 at 11:05 am #

            It makes sense in that CNMs must have malpractice insurance if they want to practice in hospitals or mixed OB/gyn practices. In California, CNMs must have physician oversight to do homebirth, and I imagine it’s pretty hard to get a doc to sign off if he/she’s the only one carrying med-mal, plus it could put their license in danger. CPMs, of course, never need med-mal because they only do homebirth/birth center birth and if they flout any pesky rules about physician oversight, nobody seems to care.

          • Bombshellrisa
            June 8, 2013 at 11:31 am #


            Here are the rates for malpractice insurance for LM/CNMs in Washington state. For the busiest practices of CPMs (whose midwives average about 4 births per month), this cost is about $6, 867 for the base rate, with the premium per birth increment about $164 per birth.

          • staceyWM
            June 8, 2013 at 2:13 pm #

            There is no excuse to not carry this important insurance. It costs, what, 2 birth fees and adds 150 to the overall cost? Its a great deal considering that ONE baby with CP caused by HB (like Abel Andrews) will have a family needing millions of dollars in care, which will be borne of the taxpayers. By NOT requiring HB MW to carry insurance, TAXPAYERS subsidize lazy MWs that refuse to cover the costs of their own mistakes.

          • Eddie
            June 8, 2013 at 2:49 pm #

            Agreed. That comment came off as, “If I’m a CNM doing OOH births, I’ve heard it’s hard to get medi-mal. But if I’m a CPM, I don’t have to worry about getting it at all.”

      • Captain Obvious
        June 8, 2013 at 11:49 am #

        1) if signs of distress were detected in the hospital by way of FHR tracing, a cesarean could have been done.
        2) equipment and staff training could also help decrease MAS. Did the midwife suction the nose before mouth, this could lead to reflex inhalation stimuli in the baby. In a hospital the baby would have had a meconium aspirator suction tubing attached to the intubation tubing and the airway below the cords could have been cleared of any thick meconium before the baby’s first breaths. Delay in clearing the meconium allows the baby to aspirate it. Secondary apnea can occur increasing risk of hypoxia. I am positive a better resuscitation of clearing the meconium and establishing an airway could have been done in the hospital vs home.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD
      June 7, 2013 at 9:45 pm #

      “MAS, he told me that it would have happened at a hospital, just the
      same as in a birth center, she got the mconium deep in her lungs early
      during labor, causing the reaction once she started to breathe.”

      No, it wouldn’t have happened in the hospital like that because if there had been any indication of fetal distress early in labor, she would have had a C-section. The her friend could have commiserated with her over her “unnecessarean” that resulted in a baby that didn’t have to be emergency airlifted to another hospital.

      When people say “it would have happened in the hospital the same way,” it strikes me as the same as saying “I would have been in the accident anyway if I had driven drunk in a Lexus instead of driving drunk in a Toyota as I actually did.” Duh, the problem was not the car model, the problem was being drunk.

      In this case, the problem was not the fact that the baby had to be transferred from the birth center; the problem was that the birth center was not equipped to detect fetal distress in a timely fashion.

      • stacey
        June 8, 2013 at 2:17 pm #

        Even IF it had happened early in labor, modern OB care would
        still have prevented it by inducing at term. Had she been born a few days sooner, this would have been a non issue.

        NCBers LOVE their post-dates babies though….still birth risk be damned. Besides, once there was mec in the fluids, they didn’t HAVE to let her keep on going, making it worse.

        (Sure, some OBs let moms go to 41 W, but at least NST/BPP would have been done.)

      • R T
        June 8, 2013 at 3:23 pm #

        A very close friend of mine was planning a homebirth until she went to 42 + 2 and her LM transferred her care to an OB. Actually the LM in San Diego transferred her at 41 + 5 but she refused the induction until 42 + 2. She was induced with Cytotec only and it worked great! The baby showed no signs of distress until she was 10cm and pushing! During pushing he had terrifying decels and they rushed her in for a csection. He was born and had meconium aspiration. He was a very sick little boy and spent over a week in the NICU. I was very kind to her afterwards because the guilt she felt was immense. She had asked me what I thought she should do and I told her to get the induction a week earlier, but that it was her baby and body. The other issue keeping her from inducing was the OB she had been seeing concurrently was on vacation until she was 42 + 2 and she strongly disliked his partner. Looking back she wishes she had gone ahead with the induction with his partner, but luckily baby is thriving now!

      • AL
        June 8, 2013 at 5:09 pm #

        This happened to me at a hospital. I was 38 weeks 3 days. They broke my water at 6cm and discovered he was a mec baby. He would decel when I was on my right side, but when I was on my left he was normal, but there were a few times when I wasn’t sure if they were going to rush me to a C. Since he was stable they let me continue to labor naturally. When he was born and he aspirated and the attending peds attempt to clear his airways and and was struggling to breathe. He did not do the big cry that you are supposed to hear. They called a code and 20 people from the NICU rushed up 2 seconds later. Probably the scariest moment of my life. I asked if I could hold him before they took him to the nicu and they were pretty much like um, okay but not really and took him 2 seconds after he was put in my arms. In those 2 seconds I could here his horrible breathing. At the end of the day he had a collapsed lung, an oxygen hood and nasal cannula to help him breathe. He did not have to be air lifted to a center because the NICU was there. AND he was not allowed to nurse until his breathing was stable, which was probably 48 hours after he was born. Guess what, he’s FINE. Three years old, super smart and very active and articulate. And he didn’t cost insurance/tax payers thousands for a life flight.

        That lady is INSANE. And selfish. I can’t believe she’s still applauding herself for giving birth naturally. I don’t even know how that is still on her brain because when my son was in the NICU all I could think about was getting him home, and pray that those moments where he was struggling to breathe didn’t cause any long term damage.

        I happened to have my 2nd boy naturally with no drugs not on purpose. He just came out too fast and I was pretty much crowning at triage. Having done it both ways, I don’t see why it’s oh-so-awesome to do it naturally.

        • schnitzelbank
          June 10, 2013 at 11:20 pm #

          Has your 3 year old complained yet about his birth experience? 😉

  14. A Lurker
    June 7, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

    There’s a part of me that feels bad for the mon in story three, because she had such good care, and it should be a wonderful memory. It would be like me whining about the CEFM because mec was spotted by my CNM and the NICU team watching me push, instead of being ecstatic that my precious boy came out perfect and all the extra staff wished us well and left us alone! She doesn’t need to feel guilty for doing what was safest for her kid and having 95% of what she wanted anyway. It’s like she’s looking for something to feel bad about.

    • Box of Salt
      June 7, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

      “It’s like she’s looking for something to feel bad about.”
      It’s post partum second guessing yourself; I did it myself years ago. And it comes directly from the pushing of this “natural is best” ideal onto everyone.

      For all the women who claim becoming “empowered” by the natural childbirth experience, how many end up, like this one, dis-empowered because childbirth – like the rest of life itself – is inherently unpredictable? Even when they don’t actually put lives into unnecessary risk, these attitudes harm women.

      • Jessica
        June 7, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

        My cousin is one. Although she planned a hospital birth, it was very much planned to be an unmedicated vaginal birth with a doula for support, followed by a year of breastfeeding and cloth diapering. She didn’t really expect the baby to be malpositioned, leading to hours and hours of painful and unproductive back labor necessitating pitocin. She didn’t expect to need the epidural. She didn’t expect to need a C-section 35 hours after her water broke without ever having fully dilated. And she really didn’t expect the baby to be born with some birth defects necessitating a transfer to Children’s Hospital. These birth defects prevented him from ever being able to breastfeed – so she pumped for 13 months.

        She told me last year when I was about to give birth that she spent her whole pregnancy devouring natural childbirth books and Mothering magazine, and the bias left her with an incredible complex about her body failing her. Her little boy is healthy and a lot of fun, though he has some special needs, and I just think she was facing a hard enough time adjusting to that without having the added burden of unnecessary NUCB guilt.

    • R T
      June 7, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

      If she admitted she had a wonderful experience in the hospital she’d lose credibility with her natural birth cult friends. She must feel bad about having a hospital birth no matter how great it was!

    • moto_librarian
      June 10, 2013 at 10:45 am #

      This was a lot like my second child’s birth too. I had an epidural from the get-go, and when the CNM broke my water, there was light mec. The NICU team was there while I was pushing, and it’s a good thing that they were there. Baby started showing major distress while crowning – my midwife told me that we needed to deliver him NOW and I heard the L&D nurse ask if she needed to page the OB Emergency Team. He basically unrolled out of his cord (wrapped around his body 3 times). He was a bit stunned, and I was so worried, waiting to hear that cry. Thanks to the NICU team, he had deep suction, O2 via CPAP, and was stable and in my arms within 20 minutes. He didn’t have to go to the NICU, and I will always be grateful to my midwife, nurses, and doctors who took care of my precious boy.

  15. Ceridwen
    June 7, 2013 at 6:04 pm #

    I think I find the second one particularly disturbing because it has so many things in common with my own labor. The difference is that I was in a hospital. When I couldn’t handle the contractions without puking, I got an epidural and was able to focus and think clearly. When the baby had some minor decels we were watched more closely. When my labor failed to progress I had pitocin (which did its job perfectly). When I had a tear from the birth it was stiched. When my doctor said it was time to do something to hurry my labor up, I listened! When my daughter was born and didn’t pink up quite as quickly as they wanted, I let them take her to the warmer and take care of her. I didn’t mess around with telling them not to cut her cord yet. Or try to get colustrum into her mouth. We had plenty of time for that later.

    No matter how many times I hear these sorts of stories I still don’t understand the thought process that prizes natural over safe.

  16. Captain Obvious
    June 7, 2013 at 5:45 pm #

    #4 Maryn Leister has had some good comments on her blogs, but rather than debate her stance she pulled protocol from TFB and just deleted them all.

  17. Meredith Watson
    June 7, 2013 at 3:47 pm #

    You can’t make this stuff up.

  18. Adelaide GP
    June 7, 2013 at 3:43 pm #

    I’m sure this has been said before on this board, but it’s so ironic how the mother in story two celebrates the “accomplishment” of her “natural” birth but yet is so oblivious as to how extremely unnatural the High tech NICU experience is! She proudly displays all the photos of the resus and humidicrib etc with an astonishing lack of self reflection or insight. Overall she comes across as just not really the brightest light on the Christmas tree, but unfortunately is quite a representative sample of the mentality of home birth devotees.

    • Lizzie Dee
      June 7, 2013 at 5:32 pm #

      Is it part of the Big Drama with One Star – and Guaranteed Happy Ending approach to childbirth do you think?

      Neonatology has made great strides since my daughter was born but I am a bit less convinced than most that they can work miracles. They do appear to be able to limit the damage and stop it getting even noticeable, perhaps. Don’t think they can reverse it. When you read the comments on these events, most seem to take the line of “Glad everything is alright now.” so being helicoptered to help seems like an interesting, cliff hanging variant on the way to that Happy Ending. Maybe it is. I hope it is..

      • Adelaide GP
        June 7, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

        I agree Lizzie. As good as neonatology is, they can’t perform miracles especially if the starting point is so far behind normal. Not to mention some of the more subtle neuro signs might only appear later in the child’s life. The

      • Adelaide GP
        June 7, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

        Oops computer froze. The short sighted view of perfect birth at expense of long term view of healthy baby/ child is a real problem 🙁

  19. Frequent Guest
    June 7, 2013 at 3:40 pm #

    Disgusting. All of it.

  20. Lena
    June 7, 2013 at 3:17 pm #

    “Not much time passed before Winnie wanted to clamp the
    umbilical cord and I asked if it had stopped pulsing, it hadn’t yet. Winnie was
    acting pretty rushed, but she waited a few more minutes then she wanted “Dad” to cut the umbilical cord.”

    The baby needed suctioning and oxygen, but she’s worried about the damn cord. So typical.

    It sounds like the midwife knew what had to be done but got so hung up on “patient autonomy” and not “scare mongering” that she failed to state things assertively. The patient wasn’t progressing and there was mec long before she was fully dilated, but instead of saying that the situation required care she didn’t have the skills or facilities to handle, she kept presenting transfer as an option. So stupid.

    • Anj Fabian
      June 8, 2013 at 7:32 am #

      Sometimes I wonder if midwives expect an unspoken desire for pain relief to motivate their patients to transfer when the option is offered.

      I suspect it works in many cases. The situation doesn’t look promising, the labor has fallen off the partogram or there is meconium or the fetal heart rate keeps doing scary things. Midwife suggests transfer and the mother thinks “I’m exhausted, in pain and want relief and the midwife thinks it’s a good idea.” and says “If you think that’s best, okay.”.

      What is a midwife going to do when all signs point to transfer but the patient refuses? The midwife is stuck in the same position as the doctor, only the doctor is going to be more blunt about talking about risks.

      • Lizzie Dee
        June 8, 2013 at 8:51 am #

        Maybe homebirth would be a lot less of a problem if the people involved were not so heavily committed to the wonders of unmedicated/natural, and went into it WITH the attitude of hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. If you KNOW a mother is going to be upset or feel like a failure then identifying the need for transfer becomes an emotional not just a rational decision. And how are you going to identify the turning points if caution is seen as “fear mongering” and a lack of trust in this fool proof design?

        Birdie’s Mama had her second in hospital, but with a doctor so (understandably) committed to the healing natural birth that she narrowly missed a second disaster. I just don’t get why this has assumed such importance. The idea that,in the good old days before modern obstetrics, women were thrilled with natural is just false in my view. Surely most would have been delighted to avoid it – and flocked to hospitals when that was possible.

  21. AmyM
    June 7, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

    The last post on the “planning a UC” thread is pretty good actually…I am curious to see if anyone there will respond. Most of the people on there, with the exception of one UC’er who has had 8 children, are warning her about the dangers inherent in childbirth and also about how bad it is to lie to your partner about something big like this.

    • Meredith Watson
      June 7, 2013 at 4:36 pm #

      I love the comment where someone said, basically, “your poor shocked, unprepared husband is going to be responsible for the healthy delivery of this baby?” Imagine if something goes wrong. How will either of them recover, let alone their marriage?

      • Lisa from NY
        June 7, 2013 at 4:39 pm #

        I guess a natural childbirth supersedes a stable family.

        • LynnetteHafkenIBCLC
          June 7, 2013 at 4:57 pm #

          Nacheral childbirth is the key to a healthy family!!!1! Also, you have to destroy the village to save it.

  22. Bombshellrisa
    June 7, 2013 at 3:00 pm #

    “: Imogen is just fine now and her aspirating meconium while in utero (Meconium Aspiration Syndrome) had nothing to do with being born out of hospital and couldn’t have been prevented if she had been” The whole drama of the hospital transfer could have though. That birth center is beautiful, but it’s useless if you need anything other than dim lights and a bath (the blogger noted that she “practiced taking baths to prep for the birth”). It should be noted that her midwife is an ARNP and licensed midwife, so quite educated and experienced as far as midwives go (although not a CNM).
    If you look at her blog, she is an Ina May follower. And this is a young woman who has suffered chronic pain with FM.

    • AmyM
      June 7, 2013 at 3:05 pm #

      Also..the midwives noticed the mec when they broke her water. If she’d been in a hospital, hooked up to monitors, fetal distress MIGHT have been picked up, and baby could have been born by “unneccesarian.” It is possible the MAS could have been avoided in the hospital. Even the midwives were getting jumpy in this story…they kept trying to get the mom to go to a hospital, and when she refused, they finally wore her down after several hours, to break her water.

      I think this mother was blissfully unaware of 1)how bad this actually was (possibly she is/was in shock? or maybe just denial and 2)how bad it could have been. According to her story, the midwives didn’t SAY anything about distress (during the labor), and either they downplayed the emergency (post-birth) so as not to panic the mother, or she stuck her fingers in her ears and went la-la-la.

      • EmbraceYourInnerCrone
        June 7, 2013 at 5:23 pm #

        My daughter (born at 39 weeks) showed late decels on the EFM strip pretty far into the delivery. They ruptured the amniotic sac and there was mec. My OB had the nurse page the NICU team and the OB did a vacuum (episiotomy ouch) to get her out fast.

        The Neonatal doc suctioned her as soon as they got her out and they kept an eye on her for a few days. We were very lucky. No adverse affects. She’s 18 and in college now just finished first year in engineering. Yay for hospitals and modern obstetrics.

        It was an almost perfect pregnancy and delivery..until it wasn’t. Its really scary to NOT hear your baby make a sound when she’s born. All I could think as , she’s not crying, she’s not making any noise, why isn’t she crying.

        • AmyM
          June 7, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

          Similar with my Twin A—his sac was already ruptured, no mec, but decels and they did the vac to get him out fast. They did, he was fine. Of course, he is only 4, but he seems pretty bright. 🙂 (His brother didn’t have any issues)

        • prolifefeminist
          June 8, 2013 at 1:10 am #

          “All I could think as , she’s not crying, she’s not making any noise, why isn’t she crying.”

          That was exactly what I kept saying after my son was born (emergency c-section for suspected abruption post-MVA at term). Those were the worst, most frightening moments of my life – it quite literally felt like I was suspended in time while I waited to see if I had a live baby. Worst feeling ever. I had nightmares about it for years afterwards.

          I just cannot wrap my head around how these mothers have such cavalier attitudes about decels, meconium, and other ominous signs. I mean, I get how you can be steeped in NCB woo beforehand and have a birth fantasy going on, but once the shit starts to hit the fan, why doesn’t it jolt these women to their senses? I was once deeply immersed in woo, but the second things started to look bad, I got serious and was ready to do whatever needed to be done to keep me and my baby safe.

          The chances some of these women take…WOW. Don’t they realize that things can go really, horribly, permanently WRONG in the world?

    • The Computer Ate My Nym
      June 7, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

      The risk of MAS increases with post-date births. If she’d been induced at 40 weeks, it likely wouldn’t have happened. Also prolonged hypoxia can lead to fetal gasping and aspiration of meconium. It had quite a lot to do with the OOH birth.

    • amazonmom
      June 7, 2013 at 5:05 pm #

      Past 40 week Mec Asp syndrome babies are some of the sickest I have ever cared for in NICU. The out of hospital labor past 40 weeks had a lot to do with it. She will probably never admit it because then she would bear some responsibility, and have the guilt that brings with it.

      • Eddie
        June 7, 2013 at 7:13 pm #

        Yet these are the same moms who tell C-Section moms how they ruined their kids

  23. Captain Obvious
    June 7, 2013 at 2:43 pm #

    “At some point the midwives told me to stop pulling on the headboard, since it sounded like I was going to break it. That annoyed me. What else is a headboard for in a birthing room, other than to pull on?” Don’t pull on the headboard, push out through your bottom.

    “She was still getting O2 from the placenta, but her lungs were obviously not doing well” Wrong.

    “Winnie also checked me out, I had a minor tear with no need of stitches.” I wonder?

    “This was a possibility that never came up in any of my birthing classes or discussions with Winnie—that if complications did arise with the baby, she would have to be transferred to Seattle for care.” Nice informed consent.

    The look on the flight nurses face posing for the picture is priceless! Land ambulance, helicopter transfer, multiple hospital emergency care, prolonged NICU stay…Homebirth is so much more cost effective.

    • Bombshellrisa
      June 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm #

      This story pretty much highlights the poor standard of care given by Washington state homebirth midwives. This one IS AN RN and she still doesn’t have a clue. Part of the standard of care for midwives is to discuss transfers plans. Usually it goes something like “there is a hospital here, we can call an ambulance, 99.9% of the time it’s for pain relief when there’s a transfer”. That isn’t a plan, and this story highlights all that is wrong with saying the hospital is just 10 minutes away. Remember the troll that came by last night and insisted that most women who birth with midwives are birthing at birth centers and how close a hospital always is?

    • fuzzy
      June 8, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

      I’m a RN, and that is our standard blank faced “your fucking stupidity is beyond belief” look…..also given to baby docs and families who want us to do one more thing for their poor dying mother to try to keep her alive.

  24. Stacey
    June 7, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

    #1- Ph, THATS respectful marriage at its finest….HA

    After all the work feminists (and men!) have done to encourage men to be part of their baby’s births, childhoods, and to share parenting decisions and responsibilities, it is a shame to disregard their wants so completely. She is lucky to have a man that cares enough about her to participate, and to financially support her. She might want to reconsider her actions, or she might find herself alone. And there is rarely EBF (without pumping), baby wearing, and all the rest without a partner paying the bills…..

    #2- You have got to be kidding me. You don’t squirt anything into the mouth of a baby that is struggling to breathe. Is this a joke? And who cares how baby came out if it is being taken by helicopter for more care? COME ON. I mean, yeay for YOU, you had a, NCB at home. And your baby is going to the NICU alone. Nice.

    #3- Proof that there is the idea of a “perfect” birth and you lose unless you attain it. Very sad. Hope Mom feels OK about the necessary induction, and good for her for getting it done.

    #4- Oh the HORRORS! I know too many HB MWs want all the rights with zero of the responsibility. So sad you may have to follow evidence based care.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa
      June 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm #

      #4- Oh the HORRORS! I know too many HB MWs want all the rights with zero of the responsibility.

      We have a winner!

      This is EXACTLY what it is about.

    • sjw
      June 7, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

      #2- there was mec in the fluids, and she was overdue, but NO, it had NOTHING to do with HB! I am so glad she had a MW that at least knew to transfer, and could suction.
      She is convinced that it was NBD, and baby was fine, but since she didn’t have CEFM, how does she know there wasn’t distress? YOu can’t hear that via doppler.

      She did say:
      “She was still getting O2 from the placenta, but her lungs were obviously not doing well.”

      HEAD DESK.

      I am very happy the baby is fine, and I am sure this will be held up as an awesome example of HB/BC birth. After all, mom get “her” OOH NCB, and the baby is alive!

      • Antigonos CNM
        June 7, 2013 at 3:57 pm #

        And if Johnny is just a tad hyperactive, or has trouble learning to read, or is lousy at sports in a few years because of poor coordination, that obviously has had nothing to do with the manner of his birth.

        I know the jury is still out on the causes of ADHD, and dyslexia, etc. but neonatal borderline hypoxia has not been ruled out, either. It can’t be good for a baby to be oxygen-starved unnecessarily at birth, and only an idiot would think otherwise.

        • Amazed
          June 7, 2013 at 7:55 pm #

          Antigonos, I am amazed! Don’t you know that it’s the vaccines who did it! Tsk, tsk, I’m so disappointed in you… the medwife that you are!

          • BeatlesFan
            June 7, 2013 at 9:24 pm #

            Oh, is it the vaccines? I thought it was the formula.

          • KarenJJ
            June 8, 2013 at 8:16 am #

            No it’s the lack of cloth nappies. Those toxins in the disposable nappies just shoot right up the rectum.

          • T.
            June 8, 2013 at 5:19 pm #

            They ruin the gut bacteria, dotchanow

        • auntbea
          June 8, 2013 at 10:06 am #

          I was about to say, “Hey, I’m really uncoordinated and lousy at sports, and nothing was wrong with me!” Then I remembered that I had an Apgar of 2 after an emergency section. I mix up my numbers, too.

  25. Captain Obvious
    June 7, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

    ” She asked me if I was sure I wanted to give birth at the center, if I was sure I didn’t want to go to the hospital and get drugs. I was sure. I told her I know drugs and my body, as in they don’t work….”I can’t do this. Someone tell me I can’t do this. Don’t ask, tell! Make me go to the hospital.” Then I’d think, “but what’s the point of the hospital, the drugs wont help…so do I want a c-section? NO!”” WTH? I bet she would be surprised how the pain medicines would work. What does she think, if she needs surgery for her gall bladder or appendix she would just have to bite a stick because the pain medicines won’t work on her?

    • Lisa from NY
      June 7, 2013 at 4:42 pm #

      I have one friend whose epidural wore off in the middle of a C, and she felt the pain. But then the anesthesiologist gave her more stuff, so it worked. The baby was fine.

      How often does that happen?

      • suchende
        June 7, 2013 at 4:49 pm #

        I see so many birth stories that claim the epidural “did nothing.” How in the hell would a first time mom know if it was doing nothing? Just because you feel some pain doesn’t mean it isn’t working.

        • Jessica
          June 7, 2013 at 7:28 pm #

          When my epidural was first placed the anesthesiologist ran a wet cotton ball along my lower leg and asked if I could feel it. I could – and then I could feel an excruciating contraction. We knew it had not been placed properly. Although I wasn’t fond of the guy, he clearly felt bad for me and replaced the epidural, and when it did start working – I knew it, because I felt this warm wave of nothingness, then I fell asleep. It was fantastic.

        • Guestll
          June 7, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

          Failed epidurals are relatively rare, but they do happen. Happened to me during the birth of my one and only. How did I know it was doing nothing? Because I still felt everything, including the pinch/prick/heat/cold, and, oh, the back labour and contractions. It wasn’t “some pain”, it was all of the pain.

      • Captain Obvious
        June 8, 2013 at 12:07 pm #

        This woman states she is living with a chronic pain syndrome. So by that I think she believes pain medicines don’t work on her. Acute pain is quite different than chronic pain. She would be surprised if she had tried an epidural. Major flaw in her plan.

      • slandy09
        June 8, 2013 at 4:23 pm #

        My mom has a bulging disc in her back and some scar tissue there too, and before she had me without drugs (precipitous birth, no time), she thought that the epidural didn’t help very much. After my birth, she realized that it helped A LOT.

  26. Rochester mama
    June 7, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

    I want to know how she thinks she can magically go into labor when her husband is out of the house? And who the heck could sleep while someone was giving birth in the next room? Wouldn’t that go against letting the baby decide when to be born?

    • Antigonos CNM
      June 7, 2013 at 2:06 pm #

      I think she must be a primip.

      • AmyM
        June 7, 2013 at 2:59 pm #

        No, she said she has a son already, and she was a homebirth transfer for failure to progress.

        • Antigonos CNM
          June 7, 2013 at 3:48 pm #

          Fascinating. Wanna bet she has dystocia this time too? It is quite common, especially if she is in her 30s or if there has been a gap of more than 5 years since her last birth.

  27. Guesteleh
    June 7, 2013 at 12:44 pm #

    I don’t feel like RTFA, so can someone explain to me how this woman expects to be able to time her labor so that it happens while hubby is at work or asleep? What kind of nutbaggery is this?

    • prolifefeminist
      June 8, 2013 at 1:21 am #

      Oh silly, don’t you know that women can’t labor if they’re disturbed? Obviously her labor will grind to a halt if her husband comes home or wakes up, and resume again when he leaves. It’s part of nature’s plan – so vulnerable birthing mothers aren’t endangered by prowling lions or concerned husbands.

  28. Captain Obvious
    June 7, 2013 at 11:43 am #

    “with the most natural birth friendly doctor in the state”, and she is sure of this how? I am sure in her mind she did the research, and checked every birth attendants statistics and reviews. God, er, Ina May, forbid, she have a birth with only the second or third most natural birth friendly doctor.

    • Antigonos CNM
      June 7, 2013 at 2:07 pm #

      Dr Biter?

      • Box of Salt
        June 7, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

        Dr Biter lost his privileges in So Cal. The “About Me” indicates this mother is in Albequerque – in NM.

    • Captain Obvious
      June 7, 2013 at 4:48 pm #

      Her doctor was family practice, not OB/GYN.

    • .Guest
      June 8, 2013 at 6:13 pm #

      Her hospital has a 21% cesarean rate, encourages eating and drinking during labor, all positions you can think of for delivery and also has the top level Nicu, OR right outside of L&D and also performs family centered cesareans. It’s unfortunate she cannot recognize she gave birth in an amazing hospital to a live baby

  29. Squillo
    June 7, 2013 at 11:34 am #

    T-shirt time: “I had a natural childbirth and all I got was this stupid baby.”

  30. auntbea
    June 7, 2013 at 11:25 am #

    Hope she’s really good at hiding labor for the hours when her husband is home from work but not yet asleep. Also, hope baby doesn’t decide to crown right then — what’s she going to do? Shove him back in? Insist her husband take a nap?

  31. EBS151
    June 7, 2013 at 11:22 am #


    *Baby’s father not on board with my stunt birth? –“I’m really sad for myself that he forced me to exclude him. I really needed his support.”

    *Obstetrician refuses to deliver my high-risk baby vaginally, insisting on a c-section because the baby’s life is at risk? “I’ll go home and birth alone and when everything the OB predicted happens, it will be his fault we weren’t in the hospital when it happened.”

    *Experts in obstetrics want to oversee and regulate the care I provide to obstetric patients? “They will be forcing me to break the law and lie and risk my patients by not consulting with a doctor.”


    “She made me hit her.”

    “If I did kill her, it was because I loved her so much.”

    “Please have mercy on my for murdering my parents, I am after all, an orphan.”

    • auntbea
      June 7, 2013 at 11:23 am #

      I was thinking the same thing.

    • Karen in SC
      June 7, 2013 at 11:28 am #

      great insight!

    • Charlotte
      June 7, 2013 at 1:00 pm #

      If I were a father, I would be absolutely furious if my wife insisted on endangering my child without havingany inability to intervene.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa
        June 7, 2013 at 1:32 pm #

        I’ve related many times about how the most cherished wedding gift my wife and I got was a needlepoint from my 4 yo niece that said, “The Goal of Marriage is Not to Think Alike, but to Think Together.” We love this sentiment so much that we are having a local artist put it on a painting to give to that same niece for her wedding this fall. It is the cornerstone of our marriage.

        I will just say that, the comments made by that woman do not constitute “thinking together”…

        • StaceyWM
          June 7, 2013 at 1:41 pm #

          I am totally stealing that! I am going to paint it up today, it is such a wise sentiment. Especially in a couple where you rarely think alike 🙂

          • The Bofa on the Sofa
            June 7, 2013 at 1:46 pm #

            It applies to parenting, as well. Team parenting, that is.

  32. Jocelyn
    June 7, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    That “I did it! I gave birth! Naturally!” blog post is one of the most horrifying things I’ve ever read. Her baby is being airlifted to the hospital, and all she keeps thinking about is HER “accomplishment?” I mean, unbelievable. Really unbelievable. Yeah, home birth is about the baby. Yeah, I believe that.

    • suchende
      June 7, 2013 at 11:20 am #

      Bet you $5 her next birth is a UC. She sounds pretty annoyed with her birth attendants and their safety agenda. I bet she’ll eventually decide them pressuring her caused the MAS.

      • Susan
        June 7, 2013 at 6:54 pm #

        I was thinking something like that when I read it as well. There are plenty of vague criticisms of her midwives, but not for the right reasons.
        (The title “This Week in Homebirth Idiocy” I at first thought was a bit much, till I read the idiocacy, then it seemed appropriate)

        • suchende
          June 7, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

          Pretty common reaction to Dr A. “OMG why is this woman so mean?! Oh, because everyone is a moron. Carry on then.”

          • T,
            June 8, 2013 at 5:32 pm #

            Best description of this blog, ever.

  33. suchende
    June 7, 2013 at 11:05 am #

    How the (excuse my language) fuck does a baby pick its birthday? What magical button does a baby push to start up contractions? Does the baby have an amniohook up in there? My baby sat with her head up against my cervix for the last 5 weeks of my pregnancy. Pretty sure she was waiting on me.

    • Karen in SC
      June 7, 2013 at 11:30 am #

      There’s actually a condition where the baby is never born and nothing is done about it for years – stone fetus or something like that. So in rare instances, the biomechanism never begins.

      • holliesangel
        June 7, 2013 at 1:00 pm #

        Yes its called a lithopedion. They’re really rare and are generally the result of an abdominal pregnancy that dies and is too large to be reabsorbed by the body. To prevent infection, the mothers body calcifies the fetus to sort of seal it up for protection.

        • Karen in SC
          June 7, 2013 at 1:55 pm #

          Thanks for the explanation. I didn’t realize it was an out of the uterus pregnancy.

  34. anon
    June 7, 2013 at 11:04 am #

    OMG – “yay, I had a natural birth” followed by pictures of the baby being loaded into a helicoper in an isolette covered in wires, machines and other decidedly non-natural stuff. She may have had a natural birth but this baby certainly did not have a “natural” beginning in life. This woman is absolutely bonkers!

  35. KumquatWriter
    June 7, 2013 at 10:57 am #

    I cannot imagine rejoicing over MY accomplishment as my child was airlifted – without me – to a higher-level NICU. That is narcissism of another level entirely.

    • StaceyWM
      June 7, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

      I cannot fathom this. I was sad when mine had to go to the NICU down the hall, and we knew it was going to happen the whole pregnancy.

    • Box of Salt
      June 7, 2013 at 1:59 pm #

      I wonder, though, if in this case, it’s a true case of narcissism, or if it’s just face saving words for the NCB community.

  36. amazonmom
    June 7, 2013 at 10:39 am #

    My husband would strongly consider divorce if I tried that stunt birth crap ! Fortunately I treat him as an equal partner and neither of us go behind each others backs just to get what we want… Makes me wonder about the marriage if “hide it from hubby” is the default.

    The horrors of licensing…. Hahaha! Then we would have to behave like a real healthcare provider! The horror! The horror!

    • The Bofa on the Sofa
      June 7, 2013 at 11:40 am #

      There are levels of dishonesty and deceit, but “have the baby while the father is at work” is pretty low.

      • Eddie
        June 7, 2013 at 11:46 am #

        A spouse who thinks like that is basically not really married in her heart, but only by the law.

        And what happened to the baby choosing the time of birth?

      • suchende
        June 7, 2013 at 11:56 am #

        Seems more like incredibly naive.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa
          June 7, 2013 at 11:59 am #

          What? Going behind your husband’s back to have a child is far beyond naive.

          • suchende
            June 7, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

            Naive to think that you could conceal active labor from your husband. Just from a logistical standpoint.

  37. The Bofa on the Sofa
    June 7, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Some folks have really fucked up priorities.

  38. Claire
    June 7, 2013 at 9:58 am #

    How are these women supposed to raise this or any child expecting the support of the husband when they exclude him. Also I think seeing my child in that huge isolette would be a bit more tear inducing than not being able to start breastfeeding right away.

    • areawomanpdx
      June 7, 2013 at 11:13 am #

      Oh, they don’t expect any help from the husband in raising the child, either. I mean, what good is someone who doesn’t have boobs? They’ll banish him to the bed in the guest room, ignoring his requests for a return to intimacy, and allow their child to sleep with them, breast feeding on demand through the night, until the child is at least six. And they’ll complain bitterly in online breast feeding communities about how their husband doesn’t support their every child rearing whim. Most of these women find men to be utterly worthless when it comes to their children, except for the sperm donation.

      • Claire
        June 7, 2013 at 11:23 am #

        I guess it’s the paycheck that is important and status of being married perhaps? Single women getting insemination just to have a baby and to do AP wouldn’t work as well?

        • Bystander
          June 7, 2013 at 11:50 am #

          That’s one thing you will not find many of. NCB is overwhelmingly a disease of the comfortable — just as you don’t find anorexia nervosa* amongst people who really don’t know where their next meal is coming from, NCB and AP comes from people who don’t have to worry about how the bills will get paid. Far fewer single women have much truck with it as they only have themselves to depend on and can’t afford the time, expense or risk.

          *I’m not saying it’s not a serious condition, but when you don’t have enough, it’s a psychosis that simply doesn’t occur.

          • Amy H
            June 11, 2013 at 10:55 am #

            Or possibly NCB is a similarly serious condition…

        • suchende
          June 7, 2013 at 11:57 am #

          I don’t know how you can exclusively breastfeed (meaning no pumping), babywear and unschool without a spouse paying the bills.

          • stacey
            June 7, 2013 at 1:54 pm #

            You cannot.
            This is a very difficult lifestyle to do 100% if you aren’t a SAHM that is with the kids 24/7.

            I imagine there is a rare instance of a job that is flexible enough, like cleaning houses, massage, part time IT from home, but for the most part, everyone I know into this parenting style has a partner that works very hard. About as many of them are legally married as not, but this is simply because I am in a non religious area.

            But isn’t that the point of all this biological essentialism? To put Moms BACK in the home, out of the workforce, and dependent on a man? It is no mistake that AP was pretty much invented and promoted by Dr Sears, a fundamentalist Christian. Sure, so called feminists have picked up on this trend, but the origins re pretty telling, just like the origins of NCB.

          • prolifefeminist
            June 8, 2013 at 1:37 am #

            IMO, this lifestyle is fine if both partners agree to it and are happy with the arrangement. Problems start when only one partner is on board with the idea. We see that, for example, when women are kept under a controlling husband’s thumb by being kept pregnant or nursing and AP’ing (and therefore out of the workforce and dependent on a man she might prefer to leave). On the other end of the spectrum is this case, where the woman makes the child-rearing decisions to the exclusion of the man, who is often relegated to not much more than a paycheck.

            It’s disgusting either way. People shouldn’t treat other people as means to an end! Especially in what should be a loving relationship. What an awful environment for their children to grow up in, watching one partner use another like that.

          • Eddie
            June 8, 2013 at 2:36 pm #

            I perfectly agree. If both partners actually act as partners, then I really don’t care what their chosen arrangement is, one working or both, or even neither if they can pull it without society having to pick up the tab. All of those choices can be very healthy for the kids as long as the parents choose to parent as a team. To be clear, I’m talking about chosen arrangements, and not “we lost our jobs” arrangements. This isn’t an attack on welfare, which exists for good reasons.

            As soon as you lose mutual respect and cooperation, as soon as the parents play dominance/control games, all bets are off and you’ll most likely have another generation of screwed up people. I worry about a few of my nephews.

      • Eddie
        June 7, 2013 at 11:27 am #

        I imagine they’ll still complain about him not providing the help they won’t let him provide.

    • BeatlesFan
      June 7, 2013 at 11:48 am #

      I wonder why anyone would want to have children with someone whose input they don’t trust or consider. On the flip side, I don’t know why a man would want to have children with a woman who doesn’t consider his concerns, feelings, or wants in the slightest. My husband leaves the decisions which effect my body- pain meds during labor, breastfeeding, etc- entirely up to me. Something which could potentially harm OUR children? He sure as hell wouldn’t “Yes, Dear” me and hang in the background, and I wouldn’t respect him if he did.

      • StaceyWM
        June 7, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

        He probably does not know.
        I am sure she is concealing all of this, and sharing only amongst the echo chamber. IRL, I am sure she is all sweet and kind, agreeing with exactly what he wants- better to trick him later.

        • Poogles
          June 7, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

          “IRL, I am sure she is all sweet and kind, agreeing with exactly what he wants- better to trick him later.”

          This would certainly be in line with the frequent instances I’ve seen of HB/UC women going to an OB/midwife for prenatal care, all while planning to “accidently” wait too long to go to the hospital/call the midwife.

          • BeatlesFan
            June 7, 2013 at 9:36 pm #

            Is it just me, or does this sound disgustingly similiar to a woman “forgetting” to take her pill in order to get pregnant?

          • prolifefeminist
            June 8, 2013 at 1:29 am #

            I was thinking that too. You’ve got to be incredibly manipulative and selfish to do the “forgot to take my pill” routine or this “accidental” planned UC. Both are cut from the same cloth.

            I cringe to think of the atmosphere in any home where one partner has so little regard for the other.

          • BeatlesFan
            June 8, 2013 at 6:17 pm #

            To these women, such behavior is perfectly acceptable. However, I wonder how they would take it if their husband poked holes in the condoms to get them pregnant, or went and had a vasectomy without telling them first? Or even more drastic, if the husband insisted on the wife having a UC and refused to drive her to the hospital or call the midwife when she went into labor?

            Now I’m almost tempted to go onto MDC and start a thread along those lines. “DH refused to call the midwife because he insisted on a UC, so I UC’d a postdates breech GD baby who had shoulder dystocia and now has severe CP!” Somehow, I doubt anyone would side with the husband. I also doubt any of them would recognize their hypocrisy.

          • Eddie
            June 8, 2013 at 6:23 pm #

            Remember the controversy when Katie Holms got pregnant, due to scientologist beliefs about how one should give birth?

          • BeatlesFan
            June 8, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

            Vaguely; I don’t read magazines unless I’m in a waiting room, and I don’t generally follow the goings-on of celeb’s personal lives. I remember Tom didn’t want her to make any noise during the birth, but I don’t recall a lot of controversy, specifically.

            I do recall the asinine amount of screaming when Beyonce’ had a c-section (or that was the rumor; did she even actually have one? I don’t remember…). Which again proves that to these types, a man is not allowed to have input as to how to give birth even if he is the father of the child, but it’s totally acceptable for a bunch of harpies on the internet to do so.

            (FTR, if I were Katie, I’d have told Tommy boy to shove it and screamed as loud as I could).

          • Eddie
            June 8, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

            I don’t follow celeb stuff at all, but unfortunately it’s impossible to avoid hearing at least a little bit of it. 🙁

      • Squillo
        June 7, 2013 at 6:08 pm #

        Seriously. If you’re considering lying to your husband about something as important as this, your relationship is already in big trouble.

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