Dr. Amy’s Natural Childbirth Hall of Shame

Carve it in Stone

I love my job. I really do!

In what other job do you find people stepping forward to make fools of themselves so you can write about it?

Consider this from anti-vax clown Jennifer Margulis (you can click on the image to see it full size):

Jennifer Margulis 5-2-14

Margulis writes on her Facebook page:

A midwife who just requested my friendship on Facebook pointed out that I made the hit list of a notorious internet troll yet again! I am in good company with Ricki Lake and Jen Vbacfacts Kamel. I’ve had half a dozen friend requests today and three times as many new LIKES on Business of Baby. Thank you to this woman-hater for her ad hominem attacks against me. Her smear campaign is backfiring…

I guess there are blog “affirmations” just like there are birth affirmations and in both cases, saying it over and over again does not make it true.

My campaign against the mistruths, half truths and outright lies of the natural childbirth movement has never been more successful. I’ve never had more traffic. I’ve never had more requests for background help on mainstream media articles. I’ve never had more requests for interviews. I’ve never had so many private emails of thanks.

Margulis, who purports to be a professional journalist, is apparently thrilled to be included with Ricki Lake, a washed up talk show host, and Jen Kamel, a layperson who has the same amount of obstetric/midwifery training as both Margulis and Lake: NONE!

Hey, Jennifer, what are you going to do with all your Facebook likes for your book, currently ranked #297,043 on Amazon, and eviscerated by Annie Murphy Paul The New York Times Book Review? Oh, right, those likes are worthless.

From the NYTimes review of Margulis’ book:

Inaccurate or inflammatory statements are repeatedly reproduced without adequate substantiation or comment from the other side… Margulis’s treatment of scientific evidence is similarly unbalanced… [U]ltrasound exams of pregnant women may be responsible for rising rates of autism among their children, according to “a commentator in an online article.” This anonymous individual has “used ultrasonic cleaners to clean surgical instruments (and jewelry),” which apparently qualifies him or her to offer an opinion on how the vibration of ultrasound waves may be causing the developmental disorder: “Perhaps this vibration could knock little weak spots in myelin sheeting of nerves or such, I don’t know.”

Amy Wong of the Oregonian offered an equally cutting review:

Margulis builds her argument mostly on individual parents’ anecdotes, without providing context for whether they represent common experiences. Many of the anecdotes seem to have been selected purely for their shock value. And she frequently describes in detail how mothers suffered at the hands of doctors or nurses apparently without having sought out the doctors or nurses for verification, comment or context. This is not journalism.

But what’s especially notable about Margulis’ wishful thinking is the rogues’ gallery of “birth workers” who rushed to join her. They condemn themselves by the company they keep, including Robert Biter, who had his medical license revoked after 7 separate findings of malpractice, including the death of a baby at homebirth.

That got me thinking that there should be a Natural Childbirth Hall of Shame. It will take a while to compile the names of the many people who should be in it, but it’s never too early to think about the design.

There should be one wing for the lay people who present themselves as “experts” on childbirth, like Margulis, Lake, Kamel, and Henci Goer, among others. There should be another wing for those “birth workers” who have been persecuted for no better reason than because they presided over the births of a bunch of dead babies, including Biter, Ina May Gaskin (she deserves her own private alcove), Rowan Bailey, Christie Collins, Gloria Lemay, and all the “Sisters in Chains.” There should be a special section for organizations that profit from disseminating misinformation like Lamaze International, and other childbirth lobbying organizations.

And the courtyard should be set aside for the Midwives Alliance of North America, highlighted with a plaque in honor of MANA Liar-in-Chief Melissa Cheyney.

Jennifer Margulis has gone from journalist to joke, because of her endless stream of nonsense. Perhaps if she spent more time learning science, and less time worrying about me, she wouldn’t be one of the leading candidates for a spot in my Natural Childbirth Hall of Shame.

  • J_in_the_Lou

    What is wrong with Jen VBACFacts Kamel? She doesn’t sugarcoat the risks. She is all about presenting the risks of both VBAC and RCS so Mothers can make an informed decision.

  • Young CC Prof

    I just want to let you guys know: The fight against quackery may seem futile, but every now and then, you win one.

    I’m on the emailing list of a patient information, research and advocacy
    organization, and yesterday, I got a message about a “patient retreat,” which turned out to be a very expensive event sponsored by a consortium of medical and pseudo-medical professionals, devoted to the promotion of questionable, unproven and disproven treatments, all for additional fees, of course.

    I sent the organization a note about how I thought it was inappropriate for them to be promoting this, unproven remedies, financial exploitation of vulnerable chronic pain patients, this is NOT a proper use of my membership fees, etc. I expected it to vanish into the void like so many other messages I’ve sent, another message in a bottle drifting across the ocean.

    A few hours later, the organization president emails me back and basically says, “I think you’re right. We should only support nonprofit events. Mind if I share your email with the Board?”

    So whatever change you’re trying to make, keep trying! People won’t always listen, but sometimes your message WILL reach someone who is ready to hear it.

    • Sue

      Great! And meanwhile, the anti-vax AVN in Australia has had to change their name to Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network (hyphen and lower case so they could keep the acronym – LOL) and have had a public warning re-issued against them. Yep, there can be wins.

  • Amazed

    Jen Margulis still in hiding… err, spending time with her family, the Jan Tritten style. Or looking for a TV program willing to host the debate in real time, as she suggested.

    • Box of Salt

      I’m hoping the silence is because Dr Amy and Jennifer Margulis are actually working out the details of the on line venue.

      I would like ton find out whether the debate topic will be vaccines, ultrasounds, or the homebirth death rate in Portland.

      I can cut her slack on “spending time with her family” – my own kids’ sports events are a huge, if enjoyable, time sink at locations where there is often minimal wireless access.

      Did anyone else on reading Margulis’s call for live televised debate think “But wait – Duane Gish is dead!”

      • Box of Salt

        I’m still the queen of typos. I would like TO find out, no “n.”

      • Amy Tuteur, MD

        No, we’re not communicating privately. She offered to debate on a TV program as if there was a TV program that would invite us to do so. She’s just trying to get out of a debate because she knows she would lose.

        • Box of Salt

          “as if there was a TV program that would invite us to do so”
          PBS perhaps?

          And does she expect that program to be filmed in Portland, or in Boston? Or somewhere in the middle, such as Detroit or Minneapolis?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          Even if there were, REFUSE

          You CANNOT do this on TV. It has to be in print, where you have ample space and time to correct (with references) “factual errors” (aka lies).

          You do this live, she’ll run off a string of 14 complete lies. You take 5 minutes to explain the first one, and all you’ve done is a) shown that you have no argument, because you are on the defensive, and b) failed to address 13 of her points. Even if a couple are wrong, they can’t all be.

          That’s how these things get interpreted.

          Do this live and you will lose.

          • Amazed

            This.

            Dr Amy, you already have some experience with not being given enough time, having your words distorted to suit the TV agenda and so on.

            As I wrote down the thread, I can see why she want a live TV debate. I can’t see why you’d want one.

            You’re all about science, she’s all about impressing the masses. Being right isn’t enough. Science is conducted in labs and on paper. Be scientific! It’s science you both supposedly want to talk about, right? Do it the scientific way.

          • Life Tip

            Yes! There’s a reason all the creationists love live televised debates. It’s not about being right. It’s about one liners and sound bites and claiming a “win”. (Think of Ken Ham’s idiotic “where you there?” response to everything) Creationists bombard with silly claims, and it is impossible to thoroughly rebut each one in the allotted time. Even the best scientists and public speakers fall into this trap.

            Real scientists often over estimate the intelligence/education of the audience too, which makes it worse. They are so used to communicating with people who have at least a very basic level of science education. But how can you have a rational conversation with someone who believes that they have “other ways of knowing”? It’s like a creationist who brings in faith or bible verses to the debate. You just end up going around in circles.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Real scientists often over estimate the intelligence/education of the audience too, which makes it worse. They are so used to communicating with people who have at least a very basic level of science education.

            Another problem that scientists have is that they are used to communicating with people who have a degree of honesty. They have little experience interacting with people who are dishonest or complete liars. Their opponent rattles off 15 complete nonsense claims, and all the scientist can do is sit and stare, thinking, what in the blazes are they talking about ? This is all bullshit. It’s completely made up! How can I respond to someone’s made up claims?

          • MLE

            There are plenty of dishonest people/complete liars in science. I think in general, honest people have a hard time dealing with liars because they have a hard time understanding dishonesty.

          • Sue

            Thanks, Bofa – that’s exactly it!

            Rational debate generally accepts the principle of ”playing fair”. You can’t debate against nonsense or lies, and the audience cant always tell the difference.

            I also wouldn;t want to see Amy (with her experience, training and knowledge of the literature) having to go up against some random person who thinks they know stuff. How would they even understand the arguments?

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            It would be like this (it’s short btw): http://youtu.be/IBHEsEshhLs

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            I was thinking it would be more like this

            (at least, that’s would it would be be if it were me)

          • Life Tip

            Wow. Unfortunately, that’s an accurate depiction of videos we used to watch in our high school science class. Debates that “proved” creationism.

          • Fertile Myrtle

            Yes!!! This!! I 100% agree.

          • AmyP

            You can also do links in written format.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          My last statement: IIRC, the initial offer was a debate to take place on the blogs. If that is the case, then STICK TO IT. Don’t let her change the terms. If she does, you can say no, that is not the offer.

          She can run off and claim that you backed out, but just make it clear to everyone who asks, no. She tried to change the terms.

          • Trixie

            Also, her terms included not letting Dr. Amy use meen words like “eviscerate” against her, because apparently her delicate lady eyes are too sensitive to read that kind of language.

          • MLE

            Disembowel ok?

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            Because of course NCB activists and Dr. Amy detractors are known for their refined, genteel language. Bitch, cunt, fucking psycho, all fine to use when posting about Dr. Amy – but oh, SHE’S the meen one…

        • Sue

          I love the idea that it would be of interest to a mass population to hear the opinions of some random blogger with no health quals. That is some hubris!

  • LibrarianSarah

    So NCB’ers come here and call you a “hag” “bitch” and “cunt” and then have the audacity to call you a “woman hater” on their own webpages. Oooooookay then.

  • Bombshellrisa


    Sometimes circumstances of labor call for the need to facilitate transport to the hospital for additional support. Transport sometimes occurs in labor or in the immediate hours after the baby is born. In most cases there are events to precede the need to transport that lets the midwife know before a problem develops, allowing for transport non-emergently in your own car. Reasons for this kind of transfer may include, maternal exhaustion &/or desire for pain medication, insufficient contractions and need for pitocin, meconium in the amniotic fluid. Rarely, there is the need to call 9-1-1 and transport urgently by ambulance to the hospital.

    Very rarely, and without warning, an event may occur that requires immediate and emergent transport to the hospital for equipment or services not available at home. In a situation like this, although there is no guarantee that being in the hospital would save a mom or baby it may make a difference. Parents choosing home birth must be aware of these risks and must be willing to accept those risks.” My personal nomination for the hall of shame-this comes from In Tandem Midwifery in West Seattle. Notice they list maternal exhaustion and desire for pain medication first as reasons to transfers. The part that chaps my hide is the part where they say that something that requires immediate or emergent “May make a difference” if they are in the hospital.

    • Medwife

      I love how there are no numbers there (except for 9-1-1), just qualitative terms. Sometimes, most, rarely, very rarely. Come on! What’s your transfer rate? What percentage of transfers are not urgent, urgent, or STAT? You know their numbers aren’t huge so this is not difficult math. Rare to me means one in thousands, hundred thousands, millions. STAT transports happen a hell of a lot more often than that.

      And how is transfer for pain relief considered not that important? I think it’s pretty damn important if you have someone in screaming agony begging for help.

      • Young CC Prof

        A transfer for pain relief IS important, but your typical FTM determined to go natural is sure it won’t happen to her, because she is strong, educated in natural childbirth and the pain won’t be a problem.

      • AmyP

        And it’s going to take her a heck of a long time to get relief when she’s got to get to the hospital in heavy labor, do all the paperwork (she’s almost certainly not registered), do triage, and then get a room and an anesthesiologist. Fun, fun, fun.

        I didn’t dawdle that much going to the hospital with my second (although I did take a shower before going and putter a little with my bag), and it still almost cost me the possibility of any pain relief. Every single step took way longer than you would think. And I wanted an epidural and had known that ever since my first was born. I was totally taken by surprise that my second was a 4-hour labor after my 13-hour first one, especially since every authority I’d ever read or heard said, “Take a shower! Have a snack! Take your time going to the hospital.” Sure, if you don’t want to have an epidural.

      • Bombshellrisa

        Exactly-tell me how many times you have had to transfer a patient! If they want to talk about the cascade of interventions, they should also talk about the cascade of stupidity that is the CPM model of care. If they listed how many times they had a patient transfer for meconium, how many of those patients were post dates? How many had been in labor for hours and hours or days? How many had cohosh or castor oil inductions?

      • Monserrat Blanco

        Pain is not important ONLY when it is a woman suffering because of childbirth pain. Imagine that tone talking about a cancer patient in pain… It just does not happen. But women suffering because of childbirth : of course! There is even hypnobirthing, where they tell you that you are not in pain.

  • Amazed

    Margulis and Biter still in hiding on Margulis’ own thread. Oh the irony! Don’t they want to provide some money for the women who got the bad luck of getting on the wrong side of HNB (Holy Natural Birth)?

    • Renee Martin

      Can’t wait

  • Bodnoirbabe

    One thing I hear a lot from people who have had bad homebirth experiences is that they googled the midwife and found nothing saying she’d killed before or hurt someone before. It was only AFTER that they were able to really dig into and find the information and realize the midwife wasn’t as clean as she’d represented herself.

    I think it would be good to keep a website dedicated to having a comprehensive list of midwifes and their bad outcomes. That way if someone does google their name, maybe the website will come up and they can do a real search. This would help to keep the midwives from burying the babies twice and let people who are hiring a midwife get real information about previous births gone wrong by whoever they’re hiring. Is that something that is possible?

    • Gene

      This is an interesting idea. A spreadsheet listing things like location (state), date of birth, midwife/midwives’ name (and/or birth center name), baby name (maybe not, or maybe only if public record), outcome (death, HIE, erb’s palsy, etc). Maybe action taken against the midwife? Hyperlink to story (if possible). Two versions, one by state and one by midwife name. If this is done (and we are talking thousands of deaths here), there must be a concerted effort to not violate patient privacy. So many of these are posted on public websites and, therefore, are already in the public domain.

    • AmyP

      You’d need a lot of lawyer advice to keep from getting sued.

      • Renee Martin

        Nope, it is free speech. So long as it’s not made up, you are fine. The problem is how to get all the info. Ideally, you would need a savvy person in each state, or region.

        Ever heard of Rick Santorums web issue? That was way worse than anything we could ever say, and yet, it was up for years (may still be).

        • Trixie

          It’s still there, although Google changed some things and it’s not necessarily the #1 result anymore.

        • Jessica S.

          Ah, yes, good times. :)

        • AmyP

          It’s substantially different to 1) appropriate somebody’s name for something nasty versus 2) to accuse a professional (even a “professional”) by name of injuring and killing babies. There are such things as defamation and libel. It’s generally understood that the media has strong 1st Amendment protections even if they innocently make a false accusation, but I don’t think the courts have quite caught up to the idea that nowadays, everybody is media. Also, large media organizations have lawyers to keep them out of trouble and few of us do.

          Doctor Amy makes it look easy when she takes killer midwives to task, but she has a lot of things going for her in terms of resources that not everybody does. For one thing, as an OB/GYN, even if she came to the wrong conclusion based on some incoherent internet story, she’d have the opportunity to testify that she has the following medical training, and based on the information available in such-and-such an internet post, she came to XYZ conclusion.

          I would definitely encourage anybody to assess their resources and the legal situation before doing anything under their own name.

          The idea of a registry of OOH wrongdoing is a very valuable idea, but whoever did it would probably find it very costly in a variety of different ways.

          Also, it’s my understanding that internet providers can be chicken and dump you unexpectedly, with no due process. Dr. Amy went through that exact same thing, as I recall.

        • Houston Mom

          You can still get sued even if you’re in the right. All the midwife has to do is file a petition with the court and you are in the position of needing to defend yourself or face a default judgment. Even if she can’t find an attorney to take her case she could cobble together some kind of word-salad complaint and file it herself (pro se). If she pleads poverty with the court (in forma pauperis) she won’t even have to pay the filing fee.

          If you are able to get the case dismissed before trial, what sort of luck will you have collecting your costs from the midwife? Trial courts do screw up occasionally, in which case you will need to appeal. Here in Texas, state court judges are elected and not all of them hand down well-reasoned equitable decisions.

          Also winning once doesn’t mean a nutjob won’t just keep suing you over and over, forcing you to petition the courts to have her declared a vexatious litigant. The clerks at the courthouse (here at least) have to file what they are presented with. They don’t assess the merits of the case. They just file it and you have to answer it. I used to work for a law firm whose client was sued repeatedly by a whackadoodle pro se plaintiff and even though they were in the right and even after a judge had declared the plaintiff a vexatious litigant, he just kept filing suits the client had to answer.

          In my area a good attorney is expensive: $300/hour for an associate, $700/hour for a partner. Paralegals come in around $150/hour, court reporter cost for one deposition would be several thousand dollars. Taking it all the way to trial is really, really expensive. Even getting the judge to dismiss the case before trial would take some amount of discovery (the formal exchange of evidence between parties before trial).

          Being right doesn’t keep you safe from legal action. You may ultimately prevail, but can you afford it?

          • T.

            What if it is made by somebody outside the US?
            I mean, good luck in trying the trick you describe if you are in Oregone and the site is in Australia.

          • Houston Mom

            I think offshoring the site would make it much more difficult for someone to try to intimidate the author into removing the information.

        • NoLongerCrunching
      • Stacy21629

        Why would one need a lawyer for simply compiling publicly available information?

      • Dawn

        I thought there was a website that did get shut down a few years ago. It was authored by a woman who had received care from a CPM in Oregon…she was Rh positive, but the midwife neglected to give her Rhogam, even after the mother asked for it. Mother got sensitized, and her baby was born with some major problems. This mother was publicizing all sorts of emails from a student midwife email group (I think?), and eventually the website got taken down. I have no idea why. I don’t know if she was hacked or if she had to take it down because of legal issues.

        • Dawn

          Ooops, I meant the mom was Rh negative..

        • attitude devant

          There was. It was AWESOME. She aired ALL SORTS of dirt on the midwives. I suspect, strongly, that someone served her with a cease and desist letter and that she didn’t have the $$$ to stand up for herself.

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            Do you know the domain name? It may be possible to access said information that was previously posted. Research is research, ya know, and even if it isn’t feasible to republish as is, it might be a useful resource…

    • attitude devant

      There IS such a list in Oregon: oregonmidwifeinfo.com

      • Fertile Myrtle

        ^ this is terrifying. I wish these lists more widely advertised, especially in Oregon since out of hospital births are so popular. Actually, I wish CPM’s weren’t allowed to practice, it should be illegal given the lack of regulation/safety. The midwife that delivered my niece has a bunch of infractions/complaints/deaths on here hands. Luckily, my sister isn’t having in more children and won’t be putting them in danger.
        I used a birth center across from a hospital during this birth, mostly staffed by CPM’s and a few CNM’s. I will never be so foolish again, even if I was in a relatively safe environment, I feel pretty upset that those same CPM’s would agree to deliver babies at home. Although, the CPM’s didn’t ascribe to much of the woo I hear is popular in NCB circles I don’t feel like it’s ethical to do what they do.

    • areawomanpdx

      I have such a list for anyone who wants to make the website.

  • Medwife

    OT.

    I’m upset. There is a baby in the NICU that could’ve easily avoided that outcome. There’s a CPM responsible for it who transferred the patient in, playing the doula card. I’m torn between making a formal complaint to the licensing board, and calling and making nice to the CPM so that she doesn’t repeat her incredibly stupid decisions, should she continue to practice. Thoughts? I think she’ll easily avoid peer review, if that minimal consequence even mattered, because she’ll continue the doula facade.

    Should I make an anonymous complaint? Get an OB on board? Call and play “sisters”? Any opinions?

    • Mishimoo

      I don’t know what the best option would be, but I’d like to extend my sympathies to you and the other medical professionals that helped to rescue bub, as well as to the parents. I’m thinking of them and I hope that everything turns out well.

      • Medwife

        Thank you very much. It looks like baby is going to be fine :) The parents were very unhappy to be at the hospital and didn’t trust any of the staff as far as they could throw us. Which is what I expect, but still, ouch.

        • Jessica S.

          Well, that’s a fine how-do-you-do. I have great admiration for you and the other quality professionals who can keep working through it all.

        • Renee Martin

          Saved their babies life, and they still treat you shitty. They deserve a slap in the face. Literally.

        • Mishimoo

          Glad bub is probably going to be okay; hopefully the parents wake up and realised how lucky they were.

    • Stacy21629

      Unfortunately, given the track record of so many CPMs I very much doubt that a nice call between sisters will help. As you said, you don’t think she’ll face a stringent peer review, so why should your comments sway her.

      The more these hobbyists face semi-real consequences the better. Call the board. Get an OB involved.

      The next baby might be dead.

      Good luck.

    • Stacy21629

      I’ll also add – think of the NEXT mother to hire this woman.

      I don’t know if an anonymous complaint would be “searchable” but a nice phone call certainly doesn’t create a paper trail. Help the NEXT mother have a chance at finding for herself that this woman put a child in the NICU.

    • yugaya

      She will repeat it. Give her a couple of months and she will come up with enough excuses how it was inevitable, and she will as a CPM never be skilled enough to really prevent it from happening again, or required by law to practice safely. Remember that she is already hiding what she does by pretending to be just a doula, and not the lay midwife.

      Consult with doctors for their opinion and do what you can and what your conscience tells you.

    • Trixie

      Get an OB involved and make a complaint.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      It is a tough one. This CPM has demonstrated that she has no ethics, so why expect any sanction to make a difference?

      But I say, go after her. PUBLICIZE it.

      I just don’t understand patients who would accept a “provider” who has to hide the fact that she is a midwife. So much for “how are patients to know they aren’t legitimate?” If the midwife can’t go to a hospital and tell them she is a midwife, you know she isn’t legitimate.

      • AmyP

        Kind of late then.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          This topic hasn’t come up beforehand? You know, “If I have to go to the hospital, what happens?”?

          • Life Tip

            From talking to friends who promote homebirth and reading forums like MDC, it seems like some moms know that their midwives won’t be able to come to the hospital with them. Because they are “persecuted”, hospitals are “threatened by experts in normal birth” so they won’t accept them, and so on.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Because they are “persecuted”, hospitals are “threatened by experts in normal birth” so they won’t accept them, and so on

            That, too.

            It really shows that for a lot of these people, it’s not just that they are mislead to believe that this is “just as good” for medical care, they are actively anti-medical establishment. It’s not just that they have been fed a line, but they have to be willing to accept that there is a massive conspiracy among medical providers. IOW, the BoBB crowd…

          • prolifefeminist

            Absolutely. CPMs HAVE to play up the anti-establishment angle. Not only so they lure clients away from legitimate medical care, but also so when the shit hits the fan and there’s a death or injury, or even just a hospital transfer, the client’s loyalty is to the midwife, not the hospital personnel who are there to help save them. Midwives have to encourage the conspiracy theory bullshit if they’re to survive, and there are plenty of gullible people who gobble it right up.

          • Jessica S.

            Barf. Those poor, poor persecuted souls. Just doing the Lord’s work. I’s like to think He’d smack them upside the head if he could, but apparently it doesn’t work that way.

          • Renee Martin

            Oh so persecuted that they SUED a hospital so they couldn’t report all their train wrecks. Some nonsense about infringing on trade, harming their business, or some such.

            They sure are brilliant when it comes to covering their asses. Imagine how amazing they would be as MW if they put 1/100th of the effort they out into lying, covering up, and misleading moms.

          • Bombshellrisa

            If the midwife is type to make them sign a contract (usually to guarantee payment by 35 weeks) it usually has a sentence that says midwife will not be able to accompany woman in a transfer situation or states midwife will accompany as doula for extra $$$.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Yep. Again, hard to claim that the parents were unaware that the midwife was not a legitimate provider in that case.

          • Jessica S.

            That should be a big, f***ing red flag right there to prospective clients. I know that the MW will sell it as “poor me, it has to be that way because we’re so persecuted” but in reality it’s saying “I’m doing something I’m not qualified to do.”

      • Sue

        Let’s look at this another way. Should any of us hesitate in reporting a doctor or nurse because we were worried that it might discourage then from asking for help in future? Don’t adults need to be held to account for their actions?

    • Karen in SC

      Why did she play the doula card if she is licensed in your state? I hope someone can spell it out to the parents at an appropriate time and they might be able to publicize the CPM incompetence as well.

      • Medwife

        She claimed to be working as a doula because the patient was outside of her scope. She is a well known, fully legal local CPM. I didn’t really expect her to go out of her scope and then coach the parents to lie about it- one thing that convinced me it was actually a home birth transfer was the parents’ hostility to all of us at the hospital.

        • Jessica S.

          Sheesh. Forget my comment I just posted above, I say call her on it. She’s being knowingly deceptive, and likely rationalizing it, so she’s not going to listen to reason. She needs to be exposed.

        • Bombshellrisa

          Then what she was doing was dangerous. If she wanted the fun of catching babies, she should face the consequences when she doesn’t practice ethically. You wouldn’t want to call someone so dishonest and stupid your “sister”.

        • lawyer jane

          Yeah, the “working as a doula because patient was outside of her scope” thing makes no sense at all. I am an attorney, and if there were a client I could not competently represent because of my skill level, I couldn’t very well then provide professional services to them and then claim I was just “working as a paralegal”!!! As an attorney it IS sometimes possible to limit the scope of your practice, but it generally works the reverse as this CPM is claiming. You can limit your scope ONLY when it’s something that you can do competently in a limited, low-risk way, like drafting a single contract or submitting a form. What the doula is claiming is akin to me saying, “Sure, I will go to court to help you on your pro se death penalty appeal, but I’m only acting as your paralegal.”

        • Thankfulmom

          So was she getting prenatal care from an OB or CNM as backup? Planning to have a homebirth all along?

          • Medwife

            I think that’s what was going on. The shadow care OB-CNM practice didn’t know they were shadow care for a planned home birth.

          • Amazed

            I find this highly unethical. Not every OB or CNM practice would feel comfortable providing shadow care for a planned homebirth. But well, given the citation someone posted from one of the NHB forums, how sometimes a homebirth transport gets to bump another patient with emergency, so it’s all cool, I guess it’s too much to ask of them.

        • Sue

          Ah – the “I was just there as the support person” ruse. Didn’t work for Ms Barrett in the end.

    • fiftyfifty1

      no sisters bullshit!

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Yeah. Why would you want to be “sisters” with someone who lies?

        • Medwife

          I don’t. I wish our titles didn’t sound so similar.

    • Jessica S.

      Hmmm, you could be shrewd and do both. :) Call her first and make nice, then turn around and rat her out like she deserves and the situation commands. :) I suppose the latter will cancel out the former, but maybe it’ll disorient her first. Although I’m realistic enough to know reporting her (aka, following proper procedures – gasp!) will simply reinforce the us vs. them mentality. So in that case, report her. It’s doubt she’ll listen to reason and these workers need to be held accountable, like any other professional, since they like to consider themselves as such.

      • Dr Kitty

        That would be my suggestion.
        Call her, hear her out and then REPORT her.

        You have a duty to whistleblow if patient safety was endangered. Do it.

    • attitude devant

      Drop the nickel and call the Board. I’ve been doing this for so long, I have completely burned out on the ‘make nice’ approach. IT DOESN”T WORK! They have economic incentive to keep doing this shit, and a whole chorus of NCBers egging them on. If she did it this time I guarantee she did it before and will do it again.

      • Renee Martin

        She is right. Don’t bother talking to her, it will do nothing but piss you off, and let her know who is complaining so they can then harass you. And they will.

        Don’t expect to get any justice, or stop her from doing it again. Nothing short of death stops these killer MWs. Still, the more complaints the better, especially if they will show up somewhere public.

      • Medwife

        I’m torn because on the one hand, I don’t want to register a complaint and just make it even less attractive for CPMs to transfer. Someone could get killed at the next train wreck. On the other, I don’t think the CPM in this case has learned anything about the importance of working within her license. And she’s probably retained a nice chunk of change and the gratitude of the parents for maintaining continuity of “care” and “holding the space” during their terrible hospital experience. (insert eye roll here)

        • Guest

          You really are in a quandary with which direction to go. To an outsider (nonMedwife) not balancing the pro’s and con’s, the decision is a bit simpler. Perhaps try to take yourself outside of your own position and see it as its overall impact on the continuation or restriction of CPM practice. If the inappropriate actions of CPMs are not reported, nothing is going to make a difference as to whether or not CPMs adjust practice (I use that term VERY loosely) to remain within their scope (again, used loosely) or in my wishful thinking, lose state recognition.

          All that said, I know exactly how you feel with the concern a CPM may be less likely to transfer if she fears a repercussion. I always have that in the back of my mind. But maybe that will make her think twice before taking on at risk patients or make it necessary for her to leave a shadow of doubt about CPM care with families at onset of care, if she has to explain she will not follow in a transfer.

      • guest

        In Australia there is mandatory reporting, if there is a public safety issue. (As this is)

    • Busbus

      Is there any way to get through to the parents? I might be naive, but I feel like even if they might not be ready to hear or accept it now, hearing someone state unequivocally that they think the midwife/doula was grossly irresponsible and all of these health problems and pain and heartbreak could have been avoided had they been in the hospital or at least transferred earlier – maybe that’s something that could get through to them later on, when it all sunk in? Maybe even an offer to talk to them anytime about what happened if they ever feel the need to in the future? (If you feel comfortable dealing with this.)

      Again, I have never had contact with parents in this situation, and maybe I am naive. But I feel like there are so many homebirth-gone-bad stories where the parents take something one (probably well-meaning) doctor said to mean that it couldn’t have been prevented either way. And maybe if you made clear that you are NOT blaming them, but the midwife, it would have a chance of actually making a difference later on, when they are starting to really process it all?

      • Medwife

        I think postpartum visits will definitely be an opportunity to bring these issues up. I will be seeing them postpartum. It would be best if the complaint to the Board came from them. I’m feeling pretty strongly that this does need to be reported by someone.

        • Busbus

          Medwife, I agree that it should be reported. I am glad that you and others were there for this baby and family in the hospital, and I am sure it couldn’t have been easy. You have all my respect and support for what you do!

        • Guest

          Please keep us informed as to how it goes. In my experience, these parents are quiet at followup (if they followup).
          While it sounds as though CPM are legal in your state, they aren’t in all. When they practice underground and disasters come thru ED, I have yet to see any persecution. Parents fiercely protect their identity. In the case of significant morbidity or mortality cause of death or injury is ascertained and discussed. However, with the exception of a case many years ago, I have yet to see criminal persecution of the underground midwives or efforts to identify the offenders. It’s difficult to sit in those meetings and hear colleagues refer to the illegal CPM’s as midwives. Tried a few times to make the distinction. Makes me insane when cause of death is deemed ‘unpreventable’. No, no it’s not unpreventable…we need to stop the illegal practice of underground midwives to prevent the ‘unpreventable’.

      • AmyP

        That’s something to work on. Here’s some possible verbiage:

        “Here’s my card. It’s probably too soon for you right now, but if you ever want to file a complaint against your midwife for negligence or understand what went wrong, I’ll be able to talk about your file with you.”

        • Guest

          Something like it.
          “Here’s my card. If you would like any more answers, if you just want to talk about the care you received during pregnancy, or your birthing experience, I’ll be happy to help.”

          It’s too soon to talk of complaints. It’s always useful to appropriate woo language. (My sis got into non-gravid woo, and became highly sensitized to negativity words.)

  • Amazed

    MDC: a poster questioning MANA’s practices. The usual suspect in trying to keep sanity around there (still stunned how she hasn’t been banned). A homebirth mom saying stunned, “What’s going on? When I was making my decision, all the info I read said ‘as safe’.

    Willing to make bets how long it will be before Identity Crisis Mama reminds everyone that this is a support format, so the thread should be closed?

  • Beth S

    Well I don’t think my friend blames herself for going to the hospital and having a C-section to resolve high blood pressure and shoulder dystocia I think all she cares about is her healthy 9 pound baby girl (They were off by a tad bit.) So I guess the NCB woo didn’t infect too many people.

    • yugaya

      Homebirth is on the rise. The audacity with which they are defying odds and confirmed high risks when attempting it is increasing. Maybe it did not infect too many, but it is certainly getting deadlier and more dangerous.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        As I’ve noted before, the problem with drunk driving is not the risk itself, but the prevalence. If drunk driving were as common as homebirth, we’d never hear about it.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          I’ve been thinking about this.

          According to the US DOT, there are 27000 miles driven drunk for every DUI. There are 2 DUIs for each accident, and there are about 50 accidents for each death, IIRC.

          So, how many homebirths are there? Consider the recent MANA report of 5 years worth of data with something like 30 000 homebirths. I have previously estimated that a drunken drive is 8 miles on average. That would mean 240K miles driven. Let’s call it 270K for simplicity.

          That means in their report, there would be 10 DUIs, 5 accidents, and the chance of a death is miniscule.

          Man, if homebirth were only as safe as drunk driving…

  • Stacy21629

    Crickets over there. Beautiful crickets. These people really do believe in what they stand for. First sign of resistance they run like cockroaches when the light’s turned on.

    • Renee Martin

      They do that here too. They will parachute in on an opinion piece and run their mouths, but any post with facts? I never see, nor hear, any of them. Facts are their kryptonite.

  • Stacy21629

    OT – found on MDC – written by one of the *moderators*!. “I don’t want to go to the OB’s office because they’ll know less about the risks of chronic hypertension, labor and home birth than I will.” Gah!

    “I know this is an old thread, but I wanted to voice my support for others who are choosing homebirth with controlled chronic hypertension like myself. The folks who have commented before me don’t seem to have all the information. I’ve been studying this topic in depth for the last few years, and have chosen the same thing as the OP. If I don’t develop signs of preeclampsia, I’ll be having my baby at home. The chances of having a seizure with absolutely no warning signs is incredibly slim, and at the first sign you could get more help. I am so tired of this misinformation that I haven’t been able to bring myself to even step foot in an OBs office during this pregnancy because of the high chance that they know less about this topic than I do. If I need help, I’ll get it from them when the time comes, like anyone else with a managed chronic issue. I’d love to hear how this story ended up.”

    Sometimes, I really think these women WANT to kill their babies.

    • Amazed

      Saw it today. Didn’t even spit my water all over the keyboard.

      Comes to show how little their lunacy can surprise me. But when baby dies and I say, Well, she brought it all over herself, I am the cruel one, just ask Hush.

      • Karen in SC

        Right, it will all be due to the “policies” of the hospital and the OB. Like those pesky tests to confirm that the chronic HBP is not harming the baby.

        • Amazed

          And “How were we to know?”

      • Burgundy

        Who is Hush? I was on holidays for 2 weeks and haven’t caught on all the readings, did I miss something?

        • Young CC Prof

          A rather prolific new reader. See the “You Martyred Your Child” post for some 1200 comments of excitement.

      • Stacy21629

        Don’t you know you need to stop taking on such a negative view in women’s minds? Or something like that? Control their thoughts about you already!

        • Amazed

          Oh Stacy, but I don’t care what their thoughts about me are. I am saving this for the time I find my BFF, aka my midwife, in all her grandmotherly glory. Now, that’s a woman I’d never want to hate me.

          Phew, I sound like I’m looking for a Christy Collins here.

    • Young CC Prof

      “The chances of having a seizure with absolutely no warning signs is incredibly slim”

      Yes it is. But rising blood pressure is THE warning sign. And this one sounds as likely to kill herself as the baby.

      • Stacy21629

        Exactly. Margo needs to talk to our visitor Hush. Sounds like that’s exactly how her friend died. No seizures necessary.

      • The Computer Ate My Nym

        Stroke, seizure, heart attack, miscarriage, small for gestational age baby, renal failure, AAA, blindness due to retinal hemorrhage…the options for badness with hypertension are many.

        • Jessica

          I had chronic hypertension before pregnancy. During pregnancy, I had extra appointments, multiple ultrasounds in the third trimester to monitor growth and fluid levels, we discussed meds if my BP creeped up (it never got to that point) and I was induced at 39w3d. Had a healthy baby – just shy of 8 pounds – and never developed pre-e. At my postpartum check my doctor said that in every high risk pregnancy he has a checklist of all the things he worries might happen and a plan for how to deal with each of them, but he’s always thrilled when everything goes smoothly and normally.

          I can’t imagine going through pregnancy with a chronic and dangerous health condition and NOT seeing an OB. It can literally be a matter of life and death.

      • Renee Martin

        Even if thats true, there is just no guarantee you can get help fast enough. How scary, worrying about having a seizure, and hoping YOU catch the signs, while in labor? FFS.

        • Young CC Prof

          That’s exactly the point. She’s already had signs that she is at risk and decided to ignore them.

        • Stacy21629

          “hoping YOU catch the signs”
          Instead of, oh I don’t know, a TRAINED MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL.
          Seriously, why even bother with a CPM? The fact that these nutsos get a midwife in the first place acknowledges that birth is dangerous or they’d all go UC.

      • http://www.antigonos.blogspot.com/ Antigonos CNM

        Actually, I’ve seen a number of women whose FIRST symptom of pre- or true eclampsia was a completely unanticipated seizure. Yes, it is true that in the majority of cases, if a patient is getting regular antenatal care, the signs develop over time, but [1] not everyone gets really good antenatal care, [2] since a pre-eclamptic generally feels well, she isn’t monitored closely unless she has a history, and [3] the onset CAN be extremely sudden and severe even if the odds are against it.

        This is especially true for “fulminating pre-eclampsia” which develops around the 28th week of pregnancy, and postpartum eclampsia [blood pressure, etc. entirely normal prior to birth]

        • Ob in OZ

          too true

    • Renee Martin

      “Studied in depth”
      I don’t think that means what she thinks it means.

      She says
      “I haven’t been able to bring myself to even step foot in an OBs office during this pregnancy because of the high chance that they know less about this topic than I do. If I need help, I’ll get it from them when the time comes, like anyone else with a managed chronic issue. ”

      IF YOU THINK THE DOCS DON’T KNOW SHIT DURING YOUR PREGNANCY, WHY WOULD YOU TRUST THEM WHEN SOMETHING BAD HAPPENS? Why not just take care of it yourself if you are al knowing?

      • areawomanpdx

        Maybe she won’t have a seizure. Maybe she’ll have a stroke instead. I wonder if she’s even monitoring her own BP.

    • Renee Martin

      Hush- it’s your time!
      Go post and tell this woman about your friend!

    • Young CC Prof

      MANAGED chronic issue. I do not think that means what you think it means. It does not mean “I am not currently experiencing a problem,” it means “I am working with my doctor to prevent problems and our efforts have so far been successful.”

    • Medwife

      Oh for goodness sake.

      I love it. Patients under my care (concurrent with my OB of course) LITERALLY keep me up at night, just thinking about their issue, reading about the latest research, etc. But I just don’t know as much as she does. She’ll just rock in fucking seizing and/or abrupting when she needs help. Awesome!

    • Beth S

      She can ask me what a seizure post child birth feels like considering I had one, and that was a controlled and manageable disorder I’ve had since birth (Epilepsy.) Yeah I’d much rather be aware the day my child is born and be able to hold it earlier than two days post ambulance ride (I know this is a story I’ve told many times over but it feels applicable in this instance.) instead of laying in a bed with a post seizure migraine and muscles that feel like I just sprinted for an entire marathon. Or how I would’ve been dead anywhere else other than the hospital because the seizures cause weirdness in the muscles, and guess what the child birth organs are basically muscles (correct me if I’m wrong here.)

  • Amazed

    OT: A few days ago, a baby I adore received his scheduled shots. Been angry with the world for the entire next day. Tried to beat everything in sight – and my, this kid is strong!

    Any ideas what we should do with the bully he’s undoubtedly going to become? His mom still doesn’t know that he’d become one and in truth, this far he’s managed to conceal his new vile nature by cooing and smiling, and waiting patiently for us to realize that he was awake – even the baby phone didn’t register a sound and he just grinned this huge grin of his when I entered to check on him. How am I to tell her that she has a different child now?

    • Young CC Prof

      So it turned him into the Incredible Hulk? Excellent. Get him into martial-arts tournaments as soon as possible. Make sure he has a contract by twelve, and remember the real money is in product endorsements. You’ll make a fortune on that kid!

      • Amazed

        But he looks so… cute. No one will believe us that he’s all that mighty. He’s white and blond, and with these blue eyes of his… How can we advertise him? Any ideas of make up? His mom can only apply her own – and even that surpasses my abilities by far.

        • The Computer Ate My Nym

          Fine. He’s not the Hulk, he’s Thor. That will do.

          • Amazed

            Thanks. Might just work.

        • Mishimoo

          I think the vaccinations didn’t work for mine. I can tell, their eyes still glow.

        • Beth S

          Well there’s always the children of the corn route.

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            OUTLANDER! OUTLANDER!

          • Beth S

            Funny story I grew up with a brother who someone resembled the kids from that movie, needless to say he got the crap teased out of him and buzzed his gorgeous blond hair off for years. Of course it doesn’t help that I was the one doing the teasing (all the while I look around making sure my kiddo doesn’t see the devil horns under my halo.)

  • Katherine

    But Jennifer was interviewed on Fearless Parent Radio by Dr. K. Brogan about the dangers of prenatal ultrasounds. That means she must be right!

    http://fearlessparent.org/radio-blog-fearless-medicine-on-ultrasounds/

    • Aki Hinata

      So the “Fearless Parents” are the one afraid of ultrasound? Do they know what the word irony means?

      • Young CC Prof

        Ultrasounds are a sign of fear. Because pregnancy complications never happened before ultrasounds.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          Foregoing ultrasounds sounds to me more like “careless” parents.

          Let’s make an analogy: will these same parents, when their kids are 12 years old, not bother worrying where they are when they are out? Because they are “fearless” they don’t worry about their kids roaming the streets?

          When I grew up, the parents we knew like that (who didn’t care where their kids were) weren’t considered “fearless,” they were actually considered _uncaring_.

          I.e. careless.

        • Aki Hinata

          Oh yeah, all those stillborn and deformed babies in the past were just imaginary!

        • Aki Hinata

          I just explained your comment to my 13-year-old and his reaction was, “There is no help for these people.”

          • Stacy21629

            He’s probably right. Especially as long as they’re making so much money off duping people.

    • Beth S

      Wow I’m fearful then because ultrasounds are the greatest pregnancy invention since prenatals.

    • Guest

      To steal a quote:

      In truth, they aren’t fearless at all because they are afraid of just
      about everything: vaccines, toxins, ( Reuben’s) monsters under the bed,
      vaccines, GMOs, governmental interference, toxins, SBM, gluten, vaccines
      and chronic illness- amongst a myriad of other threats to life, limb
      and sanity which are largely products of their own fevered,
      undisciplined imaginations.

  • Tisha

    I just discovered that there are anti-vax parents living in my population-dense urban neighborhood. I explained to them on Facebook that their “parenting choice” not to vaccinate could have devastating effects on my three month old twins, who by virtue of their age, have not had all their vaccines. Their response is that they care more about their own children than they do about the health of other people’s children. Parenting choice? More like public health menace.

    Is it paranoid to be afraid of leaving the house with my twins? To be cautious about taking them to public places in the neighborhood? To keep them from other neighborhood children? I was planning to go to Storytime at the library this summer, but now I’m thinking twice, at least until they’ve had all their vaccines.

    What do you guys think?

    • Young CC Prof

      I kept my baby isolated until he was 10 weeks old and had his newborn vaccines, by which time flu and RSV were dying down.

      He’s 4 months old and strong, so I do take him out now, but I’m keeping a careful eye on the news reports of measles, and I don’t take him into the city with all the tourists, ever.

      • yugaya

        I could not do that, baby had to use public transport and spend time on the premises of a public school from when she was two weeks old.

        I hate myself whenever I resort to foul language in public, so I will not tell you what I think about people who do not vaccinate their children.

        • Young CC Prof

          I know it’s not an option for a lot of people, I was lucky to be able to keep him home as long as I did.

          Which is why public health is everyone’s business.

      • M B

        We are planning that with our baby, due in December. We will get the flu vaccine when available and I will get the DTP boost in the last weeks of pregnancy. We are all MMR vaccinated or positive antibodies. We will not accept unvaccinated visitors until the baby has received its shots. No public transport and no travel for the first two months at least. Both grannies have been advised to get their shots and are happy with that.

    • Amazed

      Jen Margulis agrees with your neighbours and claims that no, she doesn’t want to sound selfish but if a kid catches something from her unvaccinated kids, she won’t feel guilty.

      Fuck her, that’s what I think. Keep your kids away from those you know are unvaccinated.

      P.P. I’d like to see a law forcing those loons to pay the expenses for each and every person their selfishness affects. Measles epidemics? Unvaccinated index case’s parents pay. If a loon or three loses their earning of a lifetime, the rest of them loons might think twice before mooching off our herd immunity AND our taxes.

      • Young CC Prof

        Oh, definitely. Don’t let your kids play with unvaccinated kids!

        • Tisha

          Oh, there’s no way I would let my kids be around unvaccinated kids. But if it’s a thing in the neighborhood not to vaccinate, then should I keep them away from ALL children, because I don’t know who’s vaccinated and who’s not?

          • RinAB

            Yes! How can you tell otherwise? And consider letting your library know why you won’t be going.

          • Renee Martin

            The town I live in is full of these people, but they do cluster together so they aren’t impossible to avoid, the community is big enough they can sequester themselves much of the time (awesome!), though its a perfect place for a real outbreak.

            Thankfully my apartments don’t have any anti vaxxers that I know of. There are a lot of Mexicans, and many lower income mainstream people, they all vaxx. There was one AV nut, but she moved.

            /rant on
            We have other (worse, IMO) problems, like the influx of pit bulls being called service dogs (FAKERS). They go online and buy papers and vests, and voila, service dog! Abusing the ADA gives them a golden ticket- they can now live *anywhere*, go anywhere, pay no fees/ deposits. They brag, and tell each other how to do this to get around bans/ rules.

            I HATE this, as we are now stuck living 8 parking spots away from a huge, extremely aggressive, fighting, pit bull. It has curtailed everyones ability to move freely; neighbors are afraid to walk outside, my kids can no longer run out anytime to see their friends and must be helicoptered. I worry about the cats and small dogs. This was an oasis of free range kids and small pets, and this jerk off (and a few others) ruined it with their selfishness.

            Hope we can evict his ass soon, before there is a tragedy.

            (please don’t bother to tell me how wonderful and misunderstood these dogs are, how sweet yours is, or how ignorant I am. Stats speak for themselves, and the medical personnel caring for victims have plenty to say.)

            /rant off

          • Young CC Prof

            Yeah, fake service dogs are seriously not OK, I don’t care what breed they are! Maybe there should be a registry for actual service dogs. Checking it every time someone wants to bring their vested dog into a restaurant would be excessive, but if you’re asking for special accommodations in housing, or if a specific complaint is brought about a dog’s behavior, there ought to be a mechanism for tracking this stuff.

          • Siri

            Can you secretly kill the dog? Rat poison on a piece of steak, that kind of thing? I wouldn’t live next door to an animal like that if they paid me to…

          • Stacy21629

            As an emergency veterinarian that has treated and will soon treat MANY more dogs affected by rat poison (summer cabin season is upon us), I condemn this recommendation. To purposefully inflict a massive abdominal or thoracic hemorrhage so that an animal drowns in its own blood over several hours is cruelty. Or choosing one that causes sudden acute renal failure or seizuring to death.

            I am no fan of aggressive dogs and when I was in general practice I fired clients that had unmanageable dogs. But the solution is not to kill them through cruelty.

          • Mishimoo

            I agree. As with other medical procedures, euthanasia is best left to professionals as it is much kinder and safer than doing it oneself.

            I grew up in an area where it was ‘normal’ to take them out and shoot them just outside of town. Comparing the stories I heard about that to the euthanasias I assisted with in my old workplace; well, Lethabarb wins every time.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Rule 1 about service dogs: they are not aggressive.

            Pretty much by definition.

            Any service dog should have a record of their training, right? And I know that trainers are certified in some respect (at least by the organization that is training them).

            You should inform the apartment complex, and ask them to verify the service status of the dog. If the complex gets complaints about an aggressive dog, they absolutely have the right to check on it.

          • Stacy21629

            Unfortunately the ADA is very strict about what and how and under what circumstances you can ask about service animals. IF – *big if* – the dog is a real service animal and the handler challenges the complex on it there could be sticky legal difficulties to follow.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            But you can’t verify that they are a service animal? If an appt complex has rules against non-service animals, it can’t ask for verification? Especially if it has multiple reports of aggressive behavior?

      • Renee Martin

        YES!!! If they had to pay for their choices, there would be fewer problems. Even those that still wouldn’t vax, might be more careful where their kids go.

        If I kept my kids from all unvaxed kids, they would never leave the house. If I know there is one that is untaxed, we avoid them, but there are just to many here to do much more than that.

    • sleuther

      Well, the public school that both my kids attend announced a case of measles this week. A student at the school who is unvaccinated.

      It’s frightening and dangerous and preventable. If I had assn infant to young to be vaxxed I’d be even angrier than I am, and I’m pretty angry.

      • Box of Salt

        Are they sending the rest of the unvaccinated kids home until the the incubation period is over?

      • Amy M

        Sometimes I read the “im not vaxxing” boards at mdc, just because I marvel at the idiocy, and also, they tend to report outbreaks. Every time they report an outbreak, they ALWAYS claim it was vaccinated people who were sick and “See! That vax doesn’t work anyway, and more vaccinated people got sick, blah blah blah…” Ugh.

        • PrimaryCareDoc

          Right. They always claim that it’s from an MMR vaccinated kid “shedding.” Not that there’s ever, ever been a documented case of attenuated virus being shed by a vaccinated child and reverting to a pathogenic form.

          • areawomanpdx

            Ya, if there was shedding, it would basically be vaccinating the unvaxxed kid, not making them sick. The idiocy of these people knows no bounds.

    • NoLongerCrunching

      Yeah because spreading disease to the local population is going to be so good for her children!

      • Young CC Prof

        And because watching your own child go through measles is flippin awesome.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      Their response is that they care more about their own children than they do about the health of other people’s children.

      Hey, at least they admit up front that they are selfish assholes.

      My response? Well fuck you, too.

      Tell them the next time you drive through the neighborhood, you won’t bother watching out for kids playing, because, you know, you care more about your own kids than about the health of their children. If you run over their kids, well, fuck’em. You were thinking about your own.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      On a more rational note.

      Keep in mind one of the reasons why they can get away with not vaccinating is because people like us vaccinate our kids, which keeps the prevalence of infectious disease limited. That’s why they can claim that it is less risky to not vaccinate than to vaccinate. If they were guaranteed to catch the disease, the tradeoff would not be the same.

      Now, according to them, getting vaccinated is a risk to children. However, they are happy to let us expose our kids to that risk to help protect them. IOW, it’s not JUST that they don’t care about the health of our kids, it’s that they expect us to sacrifice our kids for their benefit.

      Did I mention they are assholes?

      • Karen in SC

        Yeah, I bet if these families decided to go on holiday in a region with polio, or measles, or diptheria, they would be vaccinating in a heartbeat.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          See Jay Gordon. Doesn’t think vaccination is important here, but goes to a place where there is more disease, and yep, he gets vaccinated.

          So here, he relies on all of us sacrificing our kids.

          What an asshole

        • Young CC Prof

          Nope, if they did that, we wouldn’t be getting measles importations like every single week all year.

          • Mishimoo

            There was one good thing to come out of a measles importation – my best friend is finally getting vaccinated. She comes from a large anti-vaxxing family, and even though she was fine (albeit slightly guilty) about her daughter getting vaccinated on time, she hadn’t gone for her own. She was exposed to a carrier and went to the doctor as soon as she found out. She’s had her MMR and is going back in a few weeks for her DTaP. The doctor and nurses all told her how proud they are of her.

          • Stacy21629

            There was a measles case (imported? can’t remember) in northern MA a couple weeks ago – guy went to a Trader Joes. PSA about “if you shopped here between these hours you may have been exposed”. Seems like a prime place for crunchy unvaccinated folks to be hanging out. Thankfully, I don’t think anything came of it.

          • Amy M

            Yep. 2 cases actually, but I don’t think they were related, and it didn’t spread. (I live in that area) (and I am staunchly PRO vax, so not super worried, my family is up to date, but still….)

          • anne

            There was a measles case awhile ago in the Portland metro area and the person involved had managed to stop at several large stores and events in the course of a weekend.

          • Young CC Prof

            Same deal with Seattle and a few other places, some of which are still waiting on incubation periods.

            But remember, measles rates in Oregon are fine if you just omit Portland!

          • Mishimoo

            That’s similar to what keeps happening here. Cases keep being reported in some popular parts of my state’s capital city. Since people tend to commute in or visit for the day from various areas, there is the potential for a widespread outbreak if unvaccinated or non-immune people take it home with them and share it with others.

        • Box of Salt

          “Yeah, I bet if these families decided to go on holiday in a region with polio, or measles, or diptheria, they would be vaccinating in a heartbeat.“

          No, they don’t. Most of the current measles cases in California were imported (and spread) by unvaccinated people who traveled to the Philipines, currently suffering a measles epidemic, and other places were measles is endemic: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6316a6.htm

          Another recent and more tragic example is described here: http://thepoxesblog.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/congenital-rubella-syndrome/
          An unvaccinated young woman on a religious mission contracted rubella in her first trimester. The baby, severely affectd, lived only for a few days.

          • Karen in SC

            Gads they are even stupider than I thought!

          • Renee Martin

            I am sure it was God’s will…. How sick.
            Whats that saying about God sending the boat, helicopter….

        • Mer

          I have a non vaxing coworker that said she would vaccinate if they lived somewhere less “safe”. Totally relying on herd immunity and she knows it.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Better known as “sponging off the sacrifices of others”

            Tell her you don’t appreciate the fact that she is counting on you to sacrifice your kids for hers (sacrificing according to her – she’s the one who things the vaccines are risky, but she relies on us to do it)

          • Mer

            Can’t tell her anything, she believes she has inherited immunity to polio since her grandad had it!

          • Amazed

            Wonder whether she’d still believe it if she needs to go to a country with a raging polio outbreak.

          • Amazed

            What a fucking pig.

            I’ve said it before but at school, there was a boy in my class with a heart condition. He died at 9 or 10. I guess he wasn’t vaccinated but I can’t know either way. I do remember he was sick quite often, more than the rest of us. What I know for sure is that if I or mine contribute to someone like him worsening, in any way, because I am a selfish pig, I could never live with myself.

            How can such leeches live with themselves?

      • Tisha

        Actually……one of the kids in this group did get measles when her family went on vacation to El Salvador. “It was scary, but I trusted her immune system.”

        I guess Trust the Immune System is the new Trust Birth?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          I trust my immune system, too. To prevent getting the disease in the first place.

          If you got the disease, then your immune system hasn’t worked well enough.

          I’ve said it before, what good is “immunity” if you have to get the disease in the first place? The whole point of immunity is to prevent getting sick.

        • RinAB

          Yes, we are expecting id twin girls, they share a placenta. We stay far away from these people “friends”, and we won’t go to church, because unfortunately, it was the church groups, and small Christian schools where the outbreaks here have happened. Because they sent families untaxed to the Philippines on mission trips. Don’t get me started. Now it’s spread to the schools. It was bad enough to have whooping cough about. At least you can vax them sooner for pertussis, you can’t vax them for measles until 1yr here. Thankfully public pressure is heating up, and the local schools are sending the under vaxed home for two weeks, trying to stop the spread. And apparently you need the two vaxes, so my 1yo and 2 yr old have only had one shot so far. It’s very frustrating. So we’ve basically decided to avoid the dummies, and are just staying away.

          • RinAB

            *Unvaxed* not untaxed

          • FormerPhysicist

            Actually, great idea. Tax the *bleep* out of them for not vaccinating.

          • Young CC Prof

            I was thinking the same thing last night! There should be a tax on not vaccinating, specifically based on the cost of treating and containing outbreaks.

          • areawomanpdx

            Yes! They could fund the local health department and free vaccines for those who DO want them.

          • Jessica S.

            Or perhaps let them all live in a colony together? I mean, they’d have so much in common and they can have the opportunity to gain NATURAL immunity to these vaccine preventable diseases, that is if they survive them. I kid about the natural immunity, of course, just using their own talking points. :)

          • Mishimoo

            They’d also be able to prove how much healthier they are than the rest of us!

          • Jessica S.

            Exactly! In fact, I would smile and nod just to encourage them to stay there. :)

          • Amazed

            I’ll guard the borders of the colony and not let anyone out!

          • Young CC Prof

            The good news is, at least 95% of children are protected after one shot. The second dose is to catch the remaining 5% and to make sure their immunity doesn’t decline as they grow up.

            And babies CAN be vaccinated at 6 months, if there’s a lot of measles in your area. It just has to be repeated after 12 months. Babies under 6 months who have been exposed can get an antibody injection.

          • RinAB

            Cool! Thanks!

          • Tisha

            This is really helpful, thanks!

        • Jessica S.

          So frustrating!

          Does one have to be vaccinated in order to travel internationally, or is that just a suggestion?

          • Young CC Prof

            Nope, guidelines, but no legal requirements. Unfortunately, I think enforcing any such requirements would be impractical.

          • Jessica S.

            Yeah, that’s probably true. It’s astonishing the risks people take with their kids, taking them unvaccinated to places they’re quite likely to get seriously ill. Or at least more likely than at home. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not the travel part that bothers me, it’s the lack of vax. I suppose that, in situations where they’re doing missionary work, they “trust God” that they’ll be safe. That’s nice and all, but I have to wonder if God might be appreciate they trust they’re Him-given brains, instead. “You don’t need to trust me on this one! Just use your brain!!” ;)

          • Young CC Prof

            Exactly. Life is inherently unsafe, and pursuing absolute safety isn’t always the best plan. However, deliberately ignoring substantial easily avoided risks is just plain dumb.

            World travel can be risky, but it’s a great experience. Make a plan, research the area to which you intend to travel, and, basic common sense, get any appropriate vaccines (or other health precautions, like malaria prophylaxis.)

        • anne

          Not a medical professional but I thought I read that in the 1918 flu pandemic healthy adults were more likely to die because their immune system overreacted. So the immune response that anti-vaxxers think is so superior can be dangerous sometimes.

          • Young CC Prof

            Actually, that’s a really interesting subject. Here’s a nice print of the infamous w-shaped death rate vs age graph. http://www.iayork.com/Images/2008/9-22-08/1918FluMortalityCDC.png

            There were two different things going on. The elderly and the young children (and other weakest members of society) mostly died of bacterial complications. The strongest and healthiest died of the overwhelming inflammatory response.

            Some theories state that the immune systems of older children and middle-aged adults just reacted the right amount to survive.

            Of course, middle aged and older adults had one other thing going for them: previous exposure to pandemic influenza. It happened every few decades, although the 1918 virus was extraordinarily severe.

        • Renee Martin

          WOW, just, WOW.
          She ought to have her kids removed. I rarely think this is a good idea, but JFC that is insane. What other risks is she willing to take?

      • Young CC Prof

        Some of them are just stupid. I met a guy the other week who claimed to have done public health work, but allowed his wife to delay their children’s vaccines AND send them to a Waldorf school with like a 40% vaccination rate. At one point he apparently had unvaxxed kids in a school filled with unvaxxed kids and babies at home. And didn’t seem to think it mattered.

        I said that it’s another time now (his kids are 8-12 years old) and the diseases are coming back, and, as a parent, I couldn’t imagine delaying vaccines, and that I eagerly counted the days until my baby could get his first round.

        If his youngest hadn’t been with him, I’d have used much harsher language. Generally accusing someone of being a terrible parent in front of their 8-year-old doesn’t make much traction.

      • Jessica S.

        This is how I feel when I come across people like that:

        • Jessica S.

          Uh, oops. I didn’t mean for it to attach four times. :/ However, I DO feel like SAYING it four times, and then some, to people like that. ;)

  • guest

    This anti-vaxx movement is driving me nuts. I am a parent advocate in my local autism group, so I am one of the first people parents of newly diagnosed children meet when they join our group. I get so upset when I meet these new parents that are so devastated because their child has autism, all because the did not vaccinate and had no ultrasounds and a home birth to insure they would be autism free. They ask me how did this happen to them? I have to sit there and explain that autism has nothing to do with any of that, and in many cases we are finding a genetic link. These parents always take it the hardest and it just pisses me off that it takes this for them to realize that everything they read on the internet it not true.

    • Renee Martin

      Than you for all the hard work you do changing mind with real information.

    • Jessica S.

      That has to be frustrating to witness.

      • Guest

        It is, and the worst part is when we start discussing the children’s needs. We always suggest getting their vaccines if they have not yet had them, and the parents always want to know why it is so important. So I explain it like this, you have a child that may be locked in an infant/toddler developmental stage for much longer than most children. They will now begin going to school with other children in the spectrum, and all those little mouths are going to lick, bite and slobber on EVERYTHING in that class room. They will not wipe their noses, cover their mouths or wash their hands every time something happens. The best thing for every one of those children is to have all the protection they can against any diseases. Because if and when that child gets sick you now are trying to get a sick child to see the pediatrician, take awful tasting medicine, and to stop wiping snot on everything. Worst case they get the chicken pox and now you are dealing with a horror show of digging and itching and screaming from the bleeding. It is all terrible, and for the most part pretty much avoidable for the worst of it with a few little needle shots.

        • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

          I am so jealous my son got vaxxed for chicken pox! I had a gnarly case at 16.

          • Renee Martin

            I wish I had had it too, I got a bad case right before 2nd grade. This coincided with moving to a new neighborhood, all covered in pox. Awful.

  • GiddyUpGo123

    Wait her book is called “The Business of Baby?” Is that an ode to Ricki Lake or is it just indicative or her inability to have an original thought?

    • Hannah

      A depressing combination of the two?

  • Captain Obvious

    Already existing, not only Sisters in Chains, but oregonmidwifeinfo.com

  • sara

    To begin, I HATE this lady! She pisses me off beyond belief. My brother is autistic, and I love him just the way he is. I wish she would stop acting like her kid is damaged goods and appreciate that his mind is unique and special. There is NOTHING wrong with an autistic child; their minds function differently and much more powerfully. They are special, not ruined by the medical world. They are gifts from heaven, and sent here to make us appreciate life in a simpler way.
    Now, I am all for natural child birth. I definitely think that we go to medicine too quickly, but I cannot fathom the idea of not vaccinating your children. When I talk to my grandparents about Polio, I can hear the fear they went through as children and teens; they were petrified that they might get it. My aunt’s oldest son has high-functioning autism and was vaccinated, so she didn’t vaccinate her second son. Her unvaccinated son has autism so bad that he doesn’t look, hug, or feel any emotion. She is STILL convinced that vaccinations cause autism, and her oldest has improved so much he isn’t even considered autistic anymore. It literally makes me SOOOOOOO angry when people don’t vaccinate their children. I hope this idiotic woman realizes that the rest of us who vaccinate our children(and risk autism) is the reason her kids don’t have polio and other deadly diseases. If the rest of the world followed her insane ideas, then we would be dropping like flies. Luckily for her we are smart enough to realize this–I have 2 boys who were induced, received epidurals, had 5-10 ultrasounds each, have vaccinations, eye drops, one wasn’t breastfed, and one was delivered by C-section. My four-year-old is reading at second-grade level and is remarkably social. My two-year-old talks like he is five and has no signs of autism. This lady is the reason I make sure to vaccinate my children on time. I am worried my kids will catch a returned disease BECAUSE OF HER!

    • Karen in SC

      Note you do not risk autism for vaccinating your children. Or yourself.

    • ngozi

      My mother had to sometimes help her mother stay up all night because they were trying to keep a child from dying of a childhood illness. If vaccines existed during my mother’s early childhood, they wouldn’t have been able to afford them.

      • Mel

        My great-great-grandma Amy and and great-grandma Fay alternated staying up day and night with my grandma Nina when she was deathly ill with influenza as a baby. They each had to hold baby Nina upright at all times so that she could breathe.

    • theadequatemother

      I’m not all for “natural childbirth.” I don’t think we jump to medicine too quickly where pre, intra and postpartum care is concerned. It’s a process that is inherently damaging and lethal for a subset of women and babies. Good care leads to many years of improved quality of life index. It is probably one of the more powerful times to intervene and “buy” good health outcomes. There is no reason to hold off on many of the “interventions” used in maternity care.

  • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

    Here Dr. Poppy is waxing poetic over a patient’s prime breech vaginal birth that was 4 weeks overdue and involved forceps… when I quipped on twitter that that mother would have loved a modern cesarean she quipped back “and cesareans are without risk?”… https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=10154046405480411&id=205950575410

    • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

      Compared to the risks of a 44 week breech instrumental vaginal delivery – yes the modern planned 39 week cesarean is less risky.

      • ngozi

        On what planet is 44 weeks a good idea, even if the dates are mixed up?

        • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

          Planet Poppy…

    • Karen in SC

      Bambi just posted a headstone of the mother and baby from 1941- and the death certificate she found. Puerpural fever, hydrocephalus, and craniotomy! The mother was less than 30 yrs old.

      Trust birth, my arse!

    • The Computer Ate My Nym

      In 1966, my sis was born by forceps, 4 weeks overdue, while my mother had pre-eclampsia. Yeah, they both survived with no damage* but it was a close thing. As in they asked my father which one they should save if it came to that kind of close.

      *Well, except that she’s my older sister and so, of course, MEEN!

  • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

    Then there should also be an area reserved for those who ought to know better – the medically trained ideologues: Dr. M. Klein; Dr. Poppy Daniels; Dr. Aviva Romm; Dr. Biter, Dr. Odent etc…. Not all NCB all stars are high school drop outs, some are credentialed and crazed….

    • attitude devant

      Which reminds me that Marsden Wagner recently died….and from the chatter on some NCB sites, you’d think the man ascended directly into heaven.

      • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

        Heaven isn’t exactly where I’d send these folks after they shuffle off their mortal coil…I’d love for them to experience all the pain their words wrought on those who feared “they wouldn’t bond with the baby” or were lesser moms for having had either an epidural or cesarean.

        • Jessica S.

          Or perhaps if that’s where their destined to end up, they can at least be “delivered” there in the manner of so many home birth babies? After hours of being stuck in a cramped, dark tunnel with only enough oxygen needed to barely keep them alive? Then wherever their dumped out, stand over them just staring for at least a minute or two before helping them breathe.

    • Amy M

      Especially the ones who ought to know better due to personal experience, yet continue hawking their wares (Ms.Shanley, that one whose name is escaping me who insisted her “birth rape” Csection was more traumatic than the death of her home-birth baby.)

      • attitude devant

        Janet Fraser

        • Amy M

          Thanks, that’s her.

      • Jessica S.

        How psychotic! And narcissistic.

  • Trixie

    You know how there’s an Encyclopedia of American Loons? There are so many to keep track of! Maybe you could team up with them? It’s a good design.
    ETA because the toddler hit send too early.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    Just posted this on Margulis’ Facebook page:

    • ngozi

      You will just be called a mean troll.

    • attitude devant

      OOOOH yes!!! Debate her! Someone get screencaps quick. There’s a delete about to happen!

    • Trixie

      Speaking of Henci, we haven’t seen much from her since the MANA stats came out, have we?

    • attitude devant

      SNORT!!!! This is sooo rich. Robert Biter hating on you, so another commenter helpfully links to the articles about his license being revoked. Damn, I am enjoying this! Where IS my popcorn?

      • Young CC Prof

        I think we should start ostentatiously calling him Mr, as certain science advocates do with the infamous Mr Andrew Wakefield.

        • Mer

          Ooh we could even refer to him as the mister formerly known as doctor!

    • amazonmom

      I wish I had the guts Dr Amy does. This is awesome.

  • Pilo

    Can we give out trophies? Because I’d be happy to whip up a bunch of these and ship them to the winners: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/259238522274688771/

  • from cali

    well, at least you are “inspiring” Dr. Biter to live a better life. He may have lost his licence, caused a baby to die, NEVER open his birth center but he’s inspired.

    • attitude devant

      anne, you owe me a new computer keyboard. I just spit coffee all over the one I have now.

      • Amazed

        Addie, buy a new keyboard and keep it around for cases like this one. I am not joking. I’ve been doing so since I spit coffee all over my keyboard and had to wait for it to dry up… while having something to send to a client the very next day.

        Running around neighbourhood at 7 p.m. looking for a new keyboard. Is. Not. Fun.

        • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

          The first time I spoke to my husband on the phone (we met online) was because he spilled beer on his keyboard laughing at a joke I made.

          • Amazed

            Ah, PC romantics! How cute!

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            Geek love <3

          • OBPI Mama

            My husband and I also met online! FarmersOnly.com! The first time we spoke on the phone was when he said his computer needed work so I gave him my number. :) Aw, memories!

          • Amazed

            One of the things that made me realize my relationship of the time was going nowhere was the fact that I preferred “socializing” online than being with my boyfriend. If you prefer people you don’t even know in real life, something. Is. Not. Right.

            Of course, his inclination to spend all his free time (and by extension, mine) with me did not help either. It was all good and right for him – he had a job out of home, he met people and so on. But me? Working on my computer all day and having him come home immediately after left me terribly isolated.

            Lesson learned: even those who are decidedly un-social animals need contacts. Now, I deliberately keep more of those and I’m far happier. It sounds ridiculous for someone who works at home to have less contacts and goings out than someone who doesn’t but it seems to be far more common than I realized. We aren’t this good at letting ourselves go.

          • Mishimoo

            My best friend became close friends with this lovely fellow in a chatroom several years ago. They met up, he was ‘adopted’ by her family, I came over from interstate to visit for a week just over 11 years ago, and the rest is history.

  • bomb

    Are these women still in middle school? Note: real professionals don’t gauge their success by friends requests.

  • attitude devant

    Dr Amy, someone on the FB page is now saying that when you spoke to the ACOG meeting you were publicly rebuked by attendees and that a bunch of people left the room to protest your presence. Care to comment?

    • Mel

      That sounds palpably unbelievable – for two obvious reasons.

      1) People at professional meetings are there for a reason – to learn. You don’t leave EVEN if you dislike someone.

      2) A public rebuke at a meeting is well-outside of professional conduct guidelines unless the person has done something very bad – like caused a rash of newborn and maternal deaths.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Which goes to show you that homebirth advocates don’t understand scientific meetings. The goal is not for everyone to agree. The goal is for everyone to discuss the issues. Disagreeing is not rebuking.

      There were some people who spoke during the Q&A session after my talk to say that they disagreed with me on the fact that the benefits of breastfeeding while real are small. I responded to them. I probably didn’t change their minds, but that’s okay. It’s not a popularity contest.

      I didn’t cry. I didn’t accuse them of being trolls. I didn’t call them hateful. I simply acknowledged their disagreement.

      A CNM who attended the meeting (and spoke with me privately in an extremely friendly manner) wrote in her local midwifery newsletter that “people” disagreed with me. No doubt, the group of CNMs she was sitting with in the back of the room did disagree with me.

      • ngozi

        What? You didn’t call them Dr. Satan?

      • PrimaryCareDoc

        And that, right there, is what they’ll never get. Disagreeing in a professional manner is not “bullying” or “hate speech” or whatever the catch phrase of the day is. It’s scientific discourse, and it is integral to improving care.

      • Montserrat Blanco

        I attended an awful presentation during the last congress I went to. I could not leave since I had to give a talk about all the presentations when I came back home. I just sat there, listened, critiziced it on my personal notes and that was it. That people worked very hard to get there. A bad presentation meant very little. Nobody seemed interested and there were no questions after the talk. No questions and no debate means lack of interest. Lots of questions are great!

    • The Computer Ate My Nym

      Probably one of the attendees asked for more details on how she got the 3:1 deaths ratio and a couple of others left during the talk because their cell phones range.

    • LovleAnjel

      Granted I’m not in medicine, but people don’t leave to protest a talk at a meeting- they pile in to see the shitshow in real time. I have seen people argue at meetings, but I wouldn’t call it a rebuke – everyone stays calm and has a reasonable discussion. You know, like professionals.

      • Paloma

        I went to a talk that some lunatic gave in my university a couple years ago, he said HIV wasn’t real and AIDS was caused by drugs given to HIV patients. I obviously didn’t agree, neither did the rest of my class. We purposely attended the talk to ask and argue with this buffoon and make sure every one in this talk realized that it was all lies and also to protest that the uni even invited him to come and speak in the first place. If we had left everyone would have just believed him and we would’ve achieved nothing at all.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Several people also spoke during the Q&A to say that if hospitals and obstetricians were nicer, no one would choose homebirth. I acknowledged that hospitals and obstetricians could be a lot nicer, but pointed out that 99% of American women choose the hospital anyway, and that, in my view, the less than 1% who choose homebirth do so out of defiance and denial.

      • attitude devant

        I’ve caught babies in six hospitals now, and honestly, they were all SUPER pretty, pleasant places full of customer-service oriented staff. There must be a bunch of REALLY bad places somewhere else.

        • Guesteleh

          I gave birth at a hospital that was not pretty, not pleasant, and not customer service-oriented. But it also had a level 3 NICU, which was far more important to me.

          • Dr Kitty

            I spent 72 hours in a corner bed of a six bedded bay.
            The midwives, after hearing I was a Dr, basically ignored me, figuring I would have a handle on the breastfeeding and baby care thing.

            That was apart from the midwife who offered to take my baby for the night and offered me Temazepam so I could sleep, and the midwife who told me to bring the baby into bed with me to sleep (as long as I had the bed sides up).
            Uh, no thanks and no thanks.
            We were totally fine without the benzodiazepines and the extra suffocation risk.

            Maybe I’m fine with it because I had a nice calm CS and no labour, maybe because I’m used to hospitals as both a Dr and patient, and I was just happy to cuddle and feed my baby.
            Maybe because I’m very comfortable saying “thanks for your helpful suggestion, but I think we’re fine doing what we’re doing”.

          • yugaya

            You have not given birth really unless you manage to bite someone’s head off verbally in the hospital these days.

          • Dr Kitty

            Oh, then I haven’t given birth.
            The only time I used strong language was when the auxiliary put the call buzzer and bed controls on the pillow… And set the bed so high and upright that I almost pulled my staples out trying to reach them.

        • theadequatemother

          I think you can have a terrible experience with labour and delivery even if the nurses and doctors and other staff are as sweet as pie. It’s just that kind of experience. Shocking. Messy. Painful. More difficult to recover from than you were prepared for. But it can’t be birth’s fault, right? Not when its gussied up in pastel decorations and everyone oohs and ahs over the baby. So it must be the hospital’s fault.

          • Busbus

            theadequatemother, that is my impression, too.

          • Anj Fabian

            When women talk about their traumatic labors and delivery, I want to tally up how many of them had epidurals and how many didn’t.

      • ngozi

        I have had an OB that was an ass during the pushing stage of my daughter’s birth. I have had several nurses that were an ass. All I had to do was call them out on being an ass (without cursing or threatening) and usually that cleared up that problem.
        It is just my opinion that some people have real horrible experiences at the hospital. That doesn’t mean EVERYONE will have a horrible experience at the hospital, or everyone will have a horrible experience at THAT hospital. Just because I have a horrible experience here in the southern United States doesn’t mean someone else will have a horrible experience in, let’s say New York or Pennsylvania.

        • OBPI Mama

          Out of 3 kids’ births at hospitals, I can only remember 1 nurse who annoyed me… she wasn’t even mean, just territorial and acted like I was having my 1st baby when he was my 3rd baby and I had the baby stuff down (the 3rd in 2-1/2 years). But once I just “accepted” her personality for what it was, I realized the perks… her love of holding babies and shooing away guests… which meant time for me to rest! haha.

      • Jenny_from_da_Bloc

        Nicer? Is that a joke?

      • anne

        I think the problem is when people conflate being “nice” with unsafe practices, which NCB actively encourages.

        • amazonmom

          Exactly Anne. They say the hospital is nice if we let them have their VBA4C with a macrosomic baby due to GD 11 months after that c section number 4. We choose to be mean and say NO

      • Paloma

        Of course there are OB’s who are not nice, just the same way you can find anyone in any profession that is not nice, including these so called midwifes. But really when you are giving birth, I would prefer a not nice doctor who knows what they are doing than a really nice person who is useless. I prefer a live baby, thank you very much. I don’t understand why some people don’t.

      • Kory Oransky

        I could have cared less if my doctor was a major league asshole when I was being stitched back together, or when my daughter needed open heart surgery. All I cared about were his or her skills, and if I/my daughter would get off the operating table alive.

        I guess if you have enough time to worry about someone kissing your royal ass, you are doing pretty well overall.

      • Alliebeth

        My favorite thing about my last OB is that she wasn’t very nice. She was a straight shooter who didn’t tiptoe around my feelings! I trusted her 100% because I knew she’d tell me the absolute truth every time.

        • wookie130

          Mine could be described in this way as well. I don’t want someone to butter my brickle. I want honesty, and point-blank opinions based on real medical expertise. If I wanted someone to powder my ass, I’d subscribe to all of the NCB/HB fluff.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          I don’t know if I’d call our OB “nice” but I’d also not characterize her a “not very nice.” She did her job, she answered all our questions and then moved on. What else would we want from her?

      • Renee Martin

        Next time tell them to check out Portland and Eugene Oregon. Hospitals here have every single NCB thing the HB and NCBers demanded. We even have a stand alone CNM birth center owned by the local hospital chain.
        And we still have the highest OOH birth rate, because they are not interested in the hospital.

        They are the ultimate goal post movers- the hospital is horrible, but when the hospital has MWs, Doulas (FREE), VBAC, even VB breech (bad idea, they are now being sued), plus all the birth bling they want like jacuzzi tubs in every room, large area for water birth (another bad idea, IMO), squat bars, wireless EFM, its not enough. Even the places that do all they can to respect all of your choices like delayed clamping, skin on skin, and taking the placenta home, and are pushing BF on a ll, it is still a hospital, so they have to hate it.

        I think they ought to quit catering to this minority. Most moms want fast, effective pain relief, wifi, cable, good food, and help with the baby. Use the cash for more anesthesiologists and better food.

        • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

          I had my “birth experience” ruined in a Eugene Oregon hospital by a mean nurse! She was rude and aggressive, pushing NCB philosophy on me, delaying my epidural (which was in my birth plan), shoved the urinary catheter in so hard I had my whole labor in my bladder, told me I had to ask her permission before I pushed the booster button on the epidural, and made me feel horrible for my entire labor!

        • Guest

          I definitely support the ‘better food’ concept. Some one else to cook, and do the washing up!

          Even the home help (co-caregiver?) must appreciate the respite…

      • carr528

        When I had Baby #1, I knew my OB personally since she was a family friend. It was nice, since everything about the pregnancy was new (obviously). With Baby #2, I switched practices (darn insurance) and had my prenatal care with CNMs. Nice there, because they took the time to discuss the pros and cons of a VBAC or RCS. With Babies #3 & 4, I didn’t need nice. I just needed appointment times I could fit in my schedule. :) Don’t get me wrong, they were nice, and I’m sure they would have done more hand holding if I needed it, but by the fourth time, I knew pretty much what to expect from pregnancy and the c-section. That’s why I don’t get why moms with two or more babies wax poetic about having long prenatal visits with their CPMs. I mean, what precisely do they need? Is it just the fact that they feel like they aren’t getting enough attention elsewhere, so they love being the center of their own little birth drama?? I don’t get it.

        • Laura

          I agree! By the time I was pregnant with my 6th and had waited once, ONLY ONCE, for an hour to see my ob, I told him that I would not do that again. I would drop by for a urine test and blood pressure check (forget weighing in!), but that as long as the baby was moving, I would NOT WAIT for him. Didn’t need hand holding. For whatever odd reason, he never made me wait again!

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            You know, sometimes OBs have to prioritize their effort. For example, perhaps there was an unscheduled delivery that came in, and the OB was helping them instead?

            If you consider this case of bad treatment by an OB, then that is very sad. In fact, if you were in labor, wouldn’t you want your OB to leave their appointments and care for you? You realize by doing that, you are forcing lots of women to sit and wait…

          • Laura

            I do not consider this a case of bad treatment by my OB. With 5 kids at home I didn’t have time to wait for an hour for a routine prenatal appt and I didn’t need hand holding. You missed my point entirely. HE chose to see me because HE wanted to – I didn’t need to see him if I had already done the routine stuff that his medical assistants can do and report to him. And, ironically, when I was in labor he was not around when he should have been.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      If anyone left, I didn’t see it. The room was packed.

      By the way, I received audience evaluations. The vast majority enjoyed the talk.

      • attitude devant

        Thought so…

        • Karen in SC

          Yeah, why would OBs leave a talk about homebirth statistics?

          • Amazed

            Maybe ol’ Jen and a bunch of comrades were there to write about the event and left, scared that lack of vaccination would leave them vulnerable to the Devil’s evil.

          • yugaya

            To run and try to beg one more time not to attempt homebirth that patient of theirs who is ignoring their recommendation to deliver in a hospital due to multiple high risks?

      • Stacy21629

        Maybe they left to beat the crowd to the exhibit hall or the lunch line. At least, I’ve seen folks at CE meetings I’ve gone to do that. I’m sure they weren’t protesting DKA treatments…

    • Amazed

      I wonder how do they know and who their source is. After all, I can say Jen Margulis is a man and anyone who decides to repeat it can do so. Does that make her a man?

    • theadequatemother

      More evidence that these NCB advocates have no shame in making stuff up and repeating lies to further their agenda. Controversial topics at med conferences are FUN. Less walkouts for sure.

  • anne

    Reminds me of a conversation I had once with an ex-Jehovah’s Witness friend of mine. She chose to have un-medicated births and not to vax because of her religious beliefs. When I mentioned BOBB and Jenny McCarthy to her she had a good laugh – said something along the lines of “At least I thought I was listening to God, not a talk show host and a playboy bunny.”

  • Amy M

    What organizations other than March of Dimes deals with research about birth defects and prematurity? ‘Cause donations to the Hall of Shame could be sent to such an organization.

    Also, I’m not generally in favor of shaming the mothers of the dead babies, as most of the time I think they are victims who were lied to by people they believed were care providers. But, the ones who have a homebirth disaster and then go on to homebirth again, or worse, who are homebirth midwives/birth workers themselves and continue to sell their services/products after a personal disaster should get some mention, since they should know better.

  • ngozi

    I am so glad to know that I am a “minion.” But I want to be one of those minions that are yellow and have only one eye.
    Would someone please for the life of me explain to me why the Natural Childbirth movement thinks that Ricki Lake’s “The Business of Being Born” actually helps their cause? I will admit, the births and labors that went well looked wonderful, but the last part of that documentary (or whatever you can call it) is the perfect scenario of a homebirth gone wrong. I don’t live in a city anything like New York, and in my area taxis can take up to 2 hours to arrive. It was a perfect example of how transferring to the hospital isn’t such an easy process.

    • Amy M

      Well that baby lived, so as far as they are concerned, no harm no foul.

      • ngozi

        But gosh, all the crap that happened before that. The mother is screaming, crying, cursing and her water breaks in the taxi. I almost couldn’t watch it. I think the taxi driver kept it together very well. I think Ricki Lake should have paid for that taxi to be cleaned!

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      I am so glad to know that I am a “minion.” But I want to be one of those minions that are yellow and have only one eye.

      Minion? Bah. You ain’t nothing until you’ve been called a Dr Amy “sock puppet.” That’s right. You have been called a minion. I have been called Dr Amy in disguise.

      • attitude devant

        In fact we are all Dr. Amy socks here. Every single one of us, even the ones who post from Australia.

        • Amazed

          Socks? SOCKS? How humiliating. Can I be Dr Amy shoe? Sounds more dignified.

          • ngozi

            Well, at least we are not her underwear….hooray for thongs…

          • Mishimoo

            Thongs ARE shoes!

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            those are called “sandals”

          • Mishimoo

            No, no. Sandals are different.

          • Box of Salt

            Thongs . . . where I grew up they were usually called flip-flops (think Jimmy Buffet). And sandals are different.

        • MLE

          If Dr Amy is every single character here, she should be writing best selling fiction.

          • ngozi

            …and drinking energy drinks from being so exhausted!!!

          • Amazed

            … with her many hands because there is a pretty good number of shoes who write their posts at the same time as Main Mean Amy.

          • MLE

            A super villain like her would have some kind of commenting bot helping out.

          • yugaya

            I was labelled “internet troll” after leaving my first ever comment on anything birth related anywhere.

          • Amazed

            Wait, you mean you aren’t Dr Amy? Pity.

            I will cling to the image of Vile Amy Troll who has as many arms as Shiva does and uses all of them to bash natural birth and steal birth experiences.

          • yugaya

            Lol I am not, and sorry to disappoint whoever came up with that wild theory. I have been working on my internet troll reputation though.

            I promise I will stop commenting on all things birthiful the minute Midwifery Today goes public with the explanation and the answers that I was promised regarding their role in the death of baby Gavin Michael.

          • MLE

            Amy is that you?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Sybil?

        • araikwao

          Yes, I’m absolutely an Aussie Dr Amy sock puppet *snort*

      • http://www.antigonos.blogspot.com/ Antigonos CNM

        So have I; and I took it as a compliment.

        • Amy M

          sock-blocked?

          • MLE

            AWESOME

          • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

            Dammit, beat me to it.

          • http://www.antigonos.blogspot.com/ Antigonos CNM

            No, she just informed me that I obviously am an alias for Dr. Amy and neither of us are who we say we are. At that point I rewrote my profile to include my credentials. Pathetic, really. The poster–not my credentials :-))

      • amazonmom

        I’ve never been called a sock but I have been blocked. I need to try harder!

        • Young CC Prof

          I’ve been deleted from NCB forums. Only been banned from antivax forums, got to work harder.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            See, I don’t even try.

            Shit, I got banned from “What to Expect” boards.

          • Young CC Prof

            Excellent!

      • fiftyfifty1

        Are you by any chance also Dr. Amy’s trollop?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          Is that some sort of sea crustacean? (Sorry, I’m pretty landlocked)

          But if so, then yes. If you are talking something else, it depends.

    • Stacy21629

      “is the perfect scenario of a homebirth gone wrong”
      Except in their warped view, it’s not.

      Just like Ms. “bloody side of home birth” that had severe PPH and needed transfusions after she transfered and posted her granny pantie pics for all the world to see. Her experience was of “how safe home birth SHOULD be”. Her CPM “recognized” a need to transfer and no one died, so A-OK.

      In The BoBB the wacko midwife (who’s since been sued for a baby death) “recognized” a need to transfer and got the mother to the hospital. Nevermind that the baby had IUGR – how’d she miss that???

      To RATIONAL people, it’s a home birth gone wrong. But to NCB types and CPMs it’s home birth gone 100% right.

  • Mel

    I propose a memorial playground in memory of all of the babies who died at their hands. I envision rows of swings – each swing with the name of a baby who died at their hands.

    • Guest

      Lets add a contemplative garden for mothers to mourn what following the NCB movement cost them: the endless hours of agonizing labor, refusing relief because they thought they had to; the weeks spent suffering trying to breastfeed when formula is a great way to feed a baby; the postpartum period lost to disappointment and self-recrimination because they “caved” to a c-section that delivered a perfectly healthy baby and mother; the hours spent obsessing over a single day rather than growing, maturing and strengthening as the mother of a child.

      • ngozi

        …and the hours spent worrying while pregnant about a c-section so much that your nerves are shot and you start vomiting.

    • MLE

      Heartbreaking.

    • CrownedMedwife

      Each time I read this comment I have a mental image of rows and rows of empty swings moving silently in a gentle breeze under bright blue skies on a sunny day. And each time it gives me chills of the heartache despair that each silent swing represents. Your memorial playground is eery, but all too real to imagine without feeling a touch of that pain.

    • CrownedMedwife

      Disqus seems to have misplaced my previous comment, so I apologize if it reappears and seems redundant.

      Your suggestion is eery and spot on. Gives me a mental image of rows and rows of empty swings, each swings silently with heartache and despair under the gentle breeze with bright blue skies. Will never look at an empty playground the same again.

    • NoLongerCrunching

      I wonder how much an acre of land next to The Farm costs?

  • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kq

    Edit – I guess my initial suggestion doesn’t actually fit. But I love this idea.

  • Mel

    Please don’t forget Lisa Barrett.

    That terribly blue, limp water birth baby picture in the comments from yesterday was one of hers. She wrote a whole blog post about how you can resus an infant without the baby ever leaving the mom’s arms. I hope she’d recognize that chest compressions are most effective on a firm, flat surface, but I doubt she knows what those are.

    • Amy M

      Sadly, I think she used to be a real midwife, so she should. She just doesn’t care.

    • lawyer jane

      God, how utterly nuts to prioritize not leaving the mom’s arms. When my babe had to be resuscitated I wanted him out of my arms ASAP – so he could be in the care of the fully staffed NICU down the hall. I have the rest of my life, god willing, to hug him, so at that minute, I wanted him to be with the people who could actually give him what he needed!