If you support a woman who lets her baby die, you bear responsibility

Me?

This post is for the apologists parachuting in to my blog and Facebook page attempting to excuse their role in a baby’s death.

Yesterday I wrote about the Facebook group Ten Month Mamas who cheered a woman as she refused to seek care for an extremely postdates pregnancy, 44 weeks by her reckoning. As complication piled on complication — prolonged ruptured membranes, meconium, transverse lie — they kept cheering, right up until the moment that they learned the baby was dead.

Had the mother successfully delivered a live baby, they would have patted themselves and each other on the back for offering the support that got her to her goal. Yet when the mother delivered a dead baby, they immediately began absolving themselves of responsibility and expressing their anger toward me for exposing them.

Here are a few choice examples of their prose:

Enlight52

Sadie Canning Dossor: How dare you post this! This is someone’s life you’re pontificating on and she chose to share it with a specific group and not you’re pathetic negative and Ill informed group. You are the worst kind of person for posting such confidential and sensitive information to point score. I’m not even gonna argue the issue of pregnancy time frames because each case is different, though I will say I went to 43 weeks with both mine, had lovely home and hospital births and almost no intervention.

You and your idiotic followers are full of judgement hate and ignorance and you clearly feel the need to spread this tripe. Well good luck to you, you utter bint.

And this:

Enlight53

Aliki Doula Livanis: This is so stupid… the whole way you go about doing things… If you didn’t bully admins in groups nor the moms who have just lost life, I would actually have some respect for you. Hell, 44 weeks plus is a far stretch for me too. I was born at 43 weeks after a medical induction, without an epidural. Maybe that’s why my mom just had me? But it was safe after having constant NST’s, or so she said. If you ended up bullying her if she had lost me, would it have changed anything? My point is, you’re not really winning… if you did what you do with dignity and grace some of us “hippies” might even hear what you’re saying. But with all this screaming and shaming, all we see is a lonely old hag who lost her medical licence for who knows what reason… who also had traumatic hospital births and doesn’t talk about it… and is bitter now shames others who choose a more graceful birth. Just a thought.

And this, which I confess I don’t really understand:

Enlight54

Michelle Bromley: Ms T, please go and get some help. It’s quite obvious that so need to do some serious debriefing.
You are dangerous.
These groups help and support so many. People do not advocate harm to mothers and babies. I’ve seen many of your posts advocate serious harm and trauma.
Please stop the harassment!

Debriefing?

And this:

Enlight55

Cygnus Lindsey: Amy you’re a nasty ass bitch. Like a damn dog salivating waiting for a crumb to drop. Fuck you old wench!

Where did I go wrong? How did they get the impression that I care about their opinions?

Be that as it may, I feel confident that they know what they did is wrong and now they are they engaging in a variety of cognitive distortions in an attempt to shed guilt, including:

It was unpreventable. In this case, they insist that if I knew the facts about what happened, I wouldn’t blame anyone. Yet no one seems to be able to come up with any facts that I got wrong.

Women have the right to do this. Yes, they have the legal right to risk their unborn children’s lives, but that doesn’t make it ethical or justifiable.

Unassisted birth is actually good for babies. Yes, this time the baby died, but had the baby lived an unassisted birth would have provided benefits for the baby.

The baby wanted it. No one invoked that here, but in previous cases mothers have claimed that the baby communicated to them where and how the he or she wished to be born.

The mother and her defenders did not pioneer these excuses. They’ve been used by child abusers since time immemorial.

Yes, I violently shook the baby for crying, but how was I supposed to know it would die?

It’s my right as a parent to beat my children bloody if I think it is for their own good.

Spare the rod, spoil the child.

If they didn’t want to be punished, they wouldn’t have misbehaved.

Those who harm children have a million excuses about why they aren’t responsible for the resulting injuries and deaths.

But the truth is that no one beats a child to death out of love; they do it to satisfy their own impulses and needs.

And the truth is that no one plans an unassisted pregnancy and birth out of love; they do it to satisfy their own impulses and needs.

The truth is that while parents have a right to discipline their children; they have responsibilities as well.

And the truth is that while mothers have a legal right to let their unborn babies die in service to their cognitive delusions, they have the ethical responsibility to provide appropriate medical care.

The truth is that children don’t benefit from being beaten; the parents benefit.

And the truth is that babies don’t benefit from unassisted pregnancy and birth; the mother benefits from bragging rights and the toxic “support” of other members of the Facebook group.

Unassisted pregnancy and birth are child abuse, albeit entirely legal. And if YOU support an abuser, YOU bear responsibility for tragedies like this one.

  • Erin Dawson

    I planned a homebirth. I went to 43 weeks. My midwife gave me “herbal pitocin”. Contractions went from nothing to knocking me of my feet within minutes. 18 Hrs later I came back to my body. My son was stuck crowning. I could feel his hair when the midwife grabbed my hand and said, “see? He’s right there…” as if that was reassuring.
    She told me to take a nap. She went to my living room to sleep. My (now ex) husband snapped at me when I said I wanted to go to the hospital. He said he’d been up this, whole time do and to just do what the midwife said.
    I laid down and I just knew in my heart that my baby boy was dead inside of me. I felt the whole world go numb and I just laid there.
    Then my kitty, who’d been hiding this whole time, jumped on me and started to meow in my face as loudly as he could (and he was a LOUD kitty).
    Suddenly I snapped out of the numbness. I realized I wasn’t stuck. I could go.
    I called the midwife’s assistant over. (She was not taking a nap and seemed to be the only one who shared my concern). She helped me get my shoes as finally my ex husband and the midwife helped me into the truck.
    The hospital was 5 mins away.
    My baby’s heart rate was dangerously low. He’d turned “sunny side up” and slightly to the side. There was no way in hell he was coming out without a C-section.
    The nurses exchanged looks. I knew they knew there wasn’t much time.
    He was born by c- section. Perfectly healthy. No brain damage. 10lbs 6 oz…..
    He’s now a happy and healthy 6 year old.

    Why did I choose homebirth? Not because I thought of myself as some “warrior wombyn”, or because I wanted to be empowered. I was terrified of him dying….. ironic huh? I have depression & anxiety but while pregnant
    it amped up to 10000%.
    Online all the natural birth mommies made me so scared of the hospital. My sister in law had a homebirth and hers thankfully turned out okay. My midwife talked me out of going to the hospital at 41 and 42 weeks. She told me there’d be a cascade of intervenions and the csection would damage him.

    I also had 2 miscarriages about 8 yrs prior. I didn’t believe I could birth a living child. I checked his heart rate twice a day with my own fetal monitor.
    I was a mess.

    I read your blog after my horrible HB experience 6 yrs ago and I commend you for continuing. I think it’s important to realize a LOT of these women have been lied to and pressured into homebirth. 43 weeks is insane! 44 is just unthinkable…. I can’t speak for every homebirther but I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of them suffer from extreme anxiety and this makes them easy prey for midwives who care more about their ideology than the baby’s life.

    • Nick Sanders

      Thank you for sharing your story.

  • Russell Jones

    Eww. The inability of certain people to (1) accept any responsibility for the foreseeable consequences of their actions and (2) deal with a critique in a manner that doesn’t involve brutish, misogynistic insults apparently knows no bounds. Bravo, Ten Month Mamas. *slow clap*

    However, the debriefing advice has merit, at least if you read “debriefing” as “deprogramming.” Dr. T is clearly a brainwashed pawn of the Allopathic Medical Establishment, Big Pharma, Elders of Zion, Bilderberg Group, Illuminati, Shape-Shifting Reptilians, etc. [j/k, as I hope was obvious]

    • MaineJen

      Quiet, you fool! You will summon the Trolls…

      • Russell Jones

        Hail hail, drivel and woo
        A pot of boiling brain-dead stew
        Trollface smiles, filled with glee
        Dumbass trollers, come to me

        • namaste863

          Rflmao

    • Empress of the Iguana People

      Except that last group; we’re real. Although we prefer “Iguana People”.

      • Charybdis

        Why Iguanas, specifically? What about all the other lizards like geckos and chameleons?
        Oh! Iguanas are shockingly under-represented in society, aren’t they? I mean, there’s the GEICO gecko and the Valspar paint chameleons, right? The iguanas are the overlords, right?

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          I could tell you, but then I’d have to feed you to my hatchlings. 😉

          • sdsures

            *maximum gigglefit*

  • Gæst

    I was born at 42 +4 weeks, although possibly later, possibly sooner as dating ultrasounds weren’t used then. I don’t think my mother got an ultrasound at any point, actually. In any case, I was a large-ish baby with a damned large head. My mother got emergency GA and I was extracted with forceps. The doctor later said it should have been a c-section. Without airing all the details, post-natal recovery wasn’t easy for her, either.

    You bet your sweet bippy my mother had her second pregnancy induced at 40 weeks. Maybe even 39, I don’t quite recall.

    • sdsures

      Giggling at “sweet bippy”!

  • Kq

    Lots of cowardly dirty deletes happening on these two threads. I do hope someone is getting screenshots. If not, someone should start (and I can’t, time is too limited today)

  • Amazed

    OK, I have an idea. Why don’t these women who proudly and confidently refused interventions because home is the best place to give birth and had their baby die before or during labour stay fucking home? Because they all seem to be making their way to the hospital pretty fast when the babies are dead already when it was never the baby who refused interventions but the same mother who now wishes a full share of them.

    I mean, walk the walk, Mom!

    • Gene

      I want to ask this of anti vaxxers who come to my ED. If you don’t trust me when I say vaccines save lives, why are you trusting me to save their life when they are dying from a vaccine preventable illness?

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    There’s been ANOTHER death in the 10 Month Mamas group: https://www.facebook.com/skepticalob/posts/604044616432908

    • Amazed

      I am not surprised. I am not even horrified. I think the horror I felt when I saw the very name 10 Month Mamas swallowed whatever horror I could have felt now.

      What a loss.

      A question that is sure to come across the wrong way but that’s what I feel. Are we even sure that all of these women truly want living children? I mean, it’s one thing to think a c-section is The Evil because it wasn’t around in the golden olden days but the frenzied efforts to ensure SOME dating sure was.

      • swbarnes2

        They did everything ‘right’. How can they say that the outcome could be anything but right? Their support system will support them by praising them for having the moral high ground that comes with sticking to their extremely ill-advised guns. And if either mother murmurs a word of complaint, she will be ostracized.

        Betting pool on how long they leave the bad news up so that others can do proper “research”?

    • Heidi_storage

      That’s awful. These poor babies die in vain, for no one learns anything from their deaths.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        In the end, all I can ever think is, all of these babies would still be alive if they just had an induction or CS at 41 weeks. That’s all it would have taken, and it would not at all have been extreme. Induction at 41 weeks is extremely common.

        I can’t understand how anyone can defend it, because the truth is immutable. These babies would be alive with routine care.

        Still births always bother me, because we can always say, “If this baby had been born a week earlier…” If only…

        Even when you DO everything right, there is still a risk of stillbirth where you can say, “If only…” but when you act this carelessly and it happens? How can you be so careless with babies?

        • mabelcruet

          I’ve done far too many autopsies on post-dates stillbirths, it saddens me every time. Where I am (UK), most mums get a dating scan very early on, and they get told to the day what gestation they are, e.g., 7+4 weeks. So how come, at the other end of pregnancy, they are left to go over to Term+12 because ‘well, we can’t be sure exactly, so we’ll let you go over’? It’s awful to read the clinical history of ‘seen at T+10, baby active’, followed by ‘T+12, no fetal heart tones’.

          A significant proportion of stillbirths are small for dates or growth restricted-we know that this isn’t being picked up in a lot of cases, so many babies may already be compromised to some degree. Post-dates, you get the increasing risk of ascending infection, increasing risk of meconium, placental insufficiency etc-add that to the ones who are already compromised and you end up with a perfect storm.

          • Heidi_storage

            My practice allows induction any time after 39 weeks. Will they allow a woman to be induced at or after term if she wishes it?

          • mabelcruet

            I think it varies. I’m in a tertiary level unit, so we tend to get the higher risk pregnancies here, which means a lot don’t go full term anyway. But if you are under midwife led care and not direct consultant led care, I don’t know if you can ask to be induced earlier. There does seem to be movement between the two areas though, so women who ask for it might be transferred over for induction, but I don’t work at the sharp end, so I don’t really know.

          • maidmarian555

            I asked for an induction at 40wks because I was miserable and very, very anxious. I was told I ‘wasn’t allowed’ an induction before 40+11 at the absolute earliest and when it came down to it there was no room for me on the ward until I was 40+12. That was under midwife-led care. That may be in part down to the fact that my community midwife was pretty dreadful (I had a number of problems throughout my pregnancy which she dismissed and didn’t deal with, including lost blood tests which meant they didn’t even know what my blood type was until I was 34wks- fortunately I didn’t need an anti-d injection as I’d missed the window by then) although, frankly, I didn’t get the impression that the midwives on the labour unit were much better either. I wasn’t told about any risks of going post-dates. I was left feeling afterwards that I had been deliberately misled and not been given the opportunity to make decisions about what level of risk was acceptable to me. Had I known what I know now, I would have been beating down their door at 40wks and demanding an induction.

          • maidmarian555

            It’s also worth noting that the same hospital has sent me literature for #2 stating that they ‘normally’ allow mothers to go to 40+12 for a VBAC too. It did say that was ‘with monitoring’ but still…….I had a panic attack (an actual one) when I got that through the door.

          • mabelcruet

            I’m sorry you’re having such an uphill fight, it really shouldn’t be this hard, should it? But I’m having similar issues (not pregnancy, but trying to sort out care for my elderly father and it’s an absolute nightmare, even for someone who is supposedly part of the system). Is your GP involved? I know GPs don’t normally provide maternity services directly, but they might know who to contact and who to refer you to. Writing is always good-having a complaint in writing is far more effective than a phone call. I know you may feel like you don’t want to make an actual complaint, but sometimes shouting is the only way people take notice. How about writing to the consultant and saying you would like to be induced at term and want a discussion about it? The PALS people in the hospital are usually the ones to approach if you have problems. But it’s very sad, you shouldn’t have to be worrying about this stuff, it should be in place. Maybe Dr Kitty will have some better advice, she’s a GP and knows the system.

          • maidmarian555

            I want an elective c-section so was anticipating some push-back on that. Dr Kitty very kindly gave me some advice on what to read up on and take to the appointment when I saw the consultant but I hadn’t anticipated that they would put barriers in the way of my getting that appointment at all! At present I am planning to go to the 34wk appt and go from there. If they are really difficult then I can transfer to another hospital, from what my midwife has said there is a difference in policy regarding birth depending on where you go. The reason I wanted to have both of my children at this particular one is because they have the largest NICU in this region and if I were to give birth elsewhere but my baby was really poorly, it would be likely they would transfer there.

            You are right, it shouldn’t be this hard to get yourself heard. It seems to me that unless your wants and needs fit exactly with what they believe you should want and need then they just make it a total pain so that you’ll give up and do what they want you to anyway.

          • mabelcruet

            I wonder how much the ideology of the Royal College of Midwives is to blame-they really push their own agenda, which is that they are the guardians of natural birth, and they are very heavily weighted towards less interventions, less medicalisation, and less interference by obstetrics leaving midwife as sole caregiver. They push more and more for hands-off natural births, and sometimes it seems to me that they act as though that is the ideal that everyone should aspire to. They just don’t get that actually, some women want medicalisation, and want epidurals, and want maternal choice sections. It doesn’t compute with them that someone would choose something ‘unnatural’. Whenever I’ve heard some of the RCM leads speak, its always in a tone of ‘we know best, we know what is best for you, you only think you want a section/epidural/formula because you’re scared’. The RCM have a frankly offensive website about birth which equates natural with normal, which automatically means that anything unnatural is abnormal, and it is very clear from that site that to them, abnormal isn’t as good. Soo Downe, one of their leaders says ‘Most women, in every country across the world, would prefer to give birth as physiologically as possible’. Personally, I think most women would prefer to give birth in a way that ensures that they are their baby are as safe as possible, and if that means intervention, then so be it. But no, she’s a midwife, so natural is best.

          • maidmarian555

            From personal experience, it certainly feels that way. They are really poor at sharing information properly so that you’re able to make informed decisions about your care. For example, even though I’ve requested a c-section they sent me a whole host of pamphlets extolling the virtues of having a VBAC- which I’ve been clear I don’t want. There’s very, very little within that information about the risks when a VBAC goes wrong and it recommends websites which I know are pro-VBAC and anti-section.

            I’ve not had an enormous amount of involvement with NHS services (thankfully) but I can’t say I’ve ever experienced this patriarchal behaviour from other medical professionals I’ve come into contact with for other things. It’s been really surprising to find it within maternity and not from doctors but from women who make a lot of noise about ’empowerment’ but who dont appear to want other women to make their own informed choices- to the extent that they will simply omit information on risk unless it pertains to something they don’t like.

            Going back to the OP, It doesn’t surprise me to see women who clearly don’t understand the real risks of going post-dates. I certainly wasn’t told and had I been wired a bit differently it would have been easy to get sucked into a group like that during my first pregnancy. You can’t know what you don’t know and whilst I’ve seen a lot of commentary both here and on FB saying that these women are going against medical advice, it’s quite possible that in some cases they aren’t and their HCPs are happy to encourage them and their all-natural ideology.

          • sdsures

            “For example, even though I’ve requested a c-section they sent me a whole host of pamphlets extolling the virtues of having a VBAC- which I’ve been clear I don’t want. There’s very, very little within that information about the risks when a VBAC goes wrong and it recommends websites which I know are pro-VBAC and anti-section.”

            If that happens to me, my hubby has suggested, “send it (the pamphlets) back!”. I wanted to make a bonfire from them instead. We KNOW 100% that I will require a CS – no buts.

          • Lilly de Lure

            I felt the same way about mine – they just wound up in the hospital recycling in the end. IN hindsight though I wish I’d kept it as evidence of the information that is provided for patients in the NHS and how misleadingly it is presented – if nothing else Dr Amy might have found it interesting!

          • sdsures

            Maybe I’ll hang onto them and scan them to show here someday?

          • Charybdis

            Shred them and send them back. Or if they hand them to you in person, tell them “No, thank you” and if they insist, rip them up in their presence.

          • Lilly de Lure

            Felt that way for me too – the only information I got on c-sections – even when I was in hospital with my baby beng monitored – was a pamphlet extolling the virtues of having an induction instead of a c-section. Only in the final sentence of the final paragraph did the pamphlet admit that a c-section was by far the safest method of being born for IUGR babies.

          • Lilly de Lure

            (Hit post too soon!) Even then the staff acted as though it was a given that induction (even one that would have required a external version) was obviously preferable to a c-section and just automatically booked me in for that despite the risks. THis despite the fact that I had explained again and again that I was not invested in having a vaginal birth and that foetal safety was my first priority – they just sort of assumed that the baby would be OK and that I’d thank them for shepherding me down the correct path in the end.

          • maidmarian555

            I was certainly misled about how long an induction could take. The midwife who administered the first pessary/tampon thing (at 11pm after they’d been telling me ALL DAY that I was going to have my waters broken manually as I was contracting by myself) ‘forgot’ to tell me it would be staying in for 24hrs. She had the package insert, said I should probably have a look at it and then left it on the opposite side of the room (I was in bed, knackered and in quite a lot of pain at the time). When she came back in the morning she threw it in the bin (I had forgotten about it and hadn’t read it)- I guess technically she provided me with the information but she did literally everything to prevent me from getting it. I didn’t find out about how long that stage would take until the morning shift came on and a poor nurse got the full blast of my sleep-deprived fury when she said they were struggling to find me a bed for the entire day……

            I do think many more women would be comfortable with the idea of a c-section if they knew more about them. It’s shocking that despite the fact that our c-sections rates are well over 20%, that they don’t provide basic info on what happens and the process/risks BEFORE you’re getting wheeled off for an emergency one. I mean, how hard would it be to put that in a leaflet and give it to pregnant women so they at least get a chance to feel slightly prepared? I really didn’t care how my son was born, just that he was safe. I made that clear many times and yet risks were taken that had I been properly informed of, I would not have chosen to take. It’s not acceptable to mislead and fail to inform women when it’s their bodies and lives at stake.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            Personally, I’d rather have give birth as least physiologically as possible!

          • AnnaPDE

            Wow, what a car salesman argument to push their preferred stuff. “Most people get the window tinting…”
            So what? Why should what “most people” want restrict a woman from choosing what she wants?

          • sdsures

            I love Dr Kitty’s posts here!

          • mabelcruet

            I did part of my training in a professorial unit-the professor had 3 daughters (all older than me at the time)-when his daughters were pregnant, he insisted they all were induced at term-he’d had 40 years of doing autopsies on post-dates babies and for older first time mothers it is a definite safety issue. But that was 30 years ago-at the time it was principally consultant/medical led care, and the care model has changed quite a bit in recent years. Maternal preference is supposed to be a reason for allowing you to go via consultant led care rather than shared care or midwife led care, but I don’t know how easy it is to access if you are technically a low risk woman. Maybe some of the UK obstetrics folk might weigh in.

          • maidmarian555

            I’m supposed to be under a consultant this time around as I’m 37 and had a prior c-section but I’ve had to really fight to try and get to see one. I have had no appointments with them thus far and can’t even see the consultant midwife at the hospital until I’m 34wks. My community midwife has been really supportive and will help me transfer my care to another hospital if the 34wk appt doesn’t go well but it’s been a real slog. It very much feels as though they want me to VBAC regardless of personal risk factors or preference and have put barriers in the way of my even being able to express my feelings and opinions. If I hadn’t badgered the hospital with repeated phone calls (from both me and my midwife) I wouldn’t even have this late appointment at all, they were clearly more than happy to just leave me with the midwife-led community care.

          • KQ Not Signed In

            I was induced at 39+0 weeks. The very first day they would allow it. I was dog sick and in pain most of the pregnancy, baby was measuring large and I was incredibly anxious about the increasing risks of stillbirth.

            The *only* reason we considered waiting was that we really had hoped he would be born on Halloween. But it fell on an Sunday and they only did planned inductions on weekdays. So instead he came from the hospital in a teensy little onesie with a weensy little pumpkin on it.

          • StephanieJR

            Aww!

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            My brother and sister were both born on Halloween (5 years apart). I don’t know if they got pumpkin onesies, but that was 60 and 55 years ago.

          • Tigger_the_Wing

            That’s weird. My sister and I were born either side of Hallowe’en 60 and 55 years ago! I was born on the 3rd of November, my sister on the 27th of October. No pumpkin anything, though.

    • momofone

      In the comments on FB, I saw that someone (maybe a couple of people) mentioned 3 deaths in the past month. Have you heard of a third death?

    • Platos_Redhaired_Stepchild

      I’d only be surprised if a kid actually survived these selfish idiots.

  • Steff Blake

    I don’t take responsibility for anyone’s birth, good or bad outcome. I believe in empowering and supporting women to make their own choices. I’ve had 4 babies, very different births from OB at the hospital, to unassisted. I took full responsibility for each birth, especially my UC. I knew that it was all on my shoulders, and every woman I know who researches her birth (no matter her choices) feels the same. I believe have intense anger at women who take ownership over their bodies, rather than obey people like you. I can’t say where that anger comes from, but it is very obvious that this is a personal axe your grinding. You love to protray yourself as some kind of hard nosed savior of the babies, but it’s a lie. You aren’t a person who is even capable of having a conversation about these very complex issues, like bodily autonomy and medical rights. As much as you rail against extremists, you are an extremist. You deal in obscene caricatures of real women with real histories and hopes and babies. I am writing this for the women who follow you. I hope at least one will see through your hurtful facade. How does it feel to cash in on grief of mothers and fathers, while holding your false high ground? You will fall off that high horse one day.

    • LaMont

      Well those “real women” don’t have babies if they make choices that systematically kill their children… and Dr. Amy (as well as the whole community) have repeatedly stated their support for autonomy. NO ONE is saying these women belong in jail. We think that transmitting factual information about risk is key to those decisions being as informed as possible.

      Also, where is the “cashing in”, exactly? Spreading the word about tragedies to prevent more tragedies is hardly a huge industry, but whatever.

      And *you* didn’t offer one single fact about birth, or countradict a single fact that Dr. Amy put forth. Try harder.

      • Steff Blake

        Arguing the risks and benefits is something that is done on a case by case, and ultimately up to the mother to decide. That’s not what I’m here for. And the cashing in is her blog, her book, etc This narrative she creates is also making her money. I didn’t say thing about jail either, but she clearly feels we must all do what the doctors say otherwise we are evil and baby killers. It’s absurd. And the women who DO follow the doctors and end up dead or with and dead baby…that’s just bad luck? Unavoidable? Death is always a possibility, and it’s something each pregnant woman has to deal with on her own.

        • LaMont

          If you make a decision that has a much, much *higher risk* of killing your baby (and those factors in this case added the hell up), then you’re at fault for the worse outcome. Following basic, uncontroversial obstetric practice has a *lower* risk of death. Not zero. Saying “medical care is not perfect, therefore throw it all out and you’ll be fine” is ridiculous. Having medical care on hand LOWERS RISK according to every study. There are probabilities between zero and 100, become acquainted with them.

          Why is it that homebirth, with its huge risk, is “all about freedom”, but doctor-supervised birth, with its incredibly low risk, is “omg so scary b/c it’s not 150% totally safe with zero risk whatsover!”

          • LaMont

            Oh, and writing books to spread information outweighs the fact that she, you know, sells them. She’s not being paid by Big Birth as far as the evidence shows, so… yeah not good enough. I’m sure the homebirth doulas and herbmongers are disparaging their much safer counterparts all out of the goodness of their hearts though.

        • Nick Sanders

          You can survive jumping out of a plane, but your chances drastically increase if you ware wearing a parachute that has been well maintained. Even though some parachutes will fail, that does not mean that diving out naked is a sensible choice or laudable.

          The existence of working safety precautions, even if imperfect, means that eschewing those precautions for reasons of ego is inherently a dumb idea, and yes, you can say that someone who died without using them would have survived if they had used them, and is therefore at fault, because we can easily compare the rates of death and injury between those who use them and those who don’t.

        • fiftyfifty1

          So the choice of how to give birth is a very, very personal one, to the point that other women shouldn’t weigh in on another woman’s choice? Ok. So why the Ten Month Mamas group then? When that mom posted about her 44+ week pregnancy, risk factors etc, why did the other women encourage her? Aren’t they obligated to, at most, write her something like “This is ultimately up to the mother to decide. It’s something each pregnant woman has to deal with on her own.”

          (I swear, UC women like to paint themselves as independent, iconoclastic, freethinkers. But it turns out they can’t do a damn thing without the constant cheering and attention of their support groups.)

        • Azuran

          We do all agree that this woman had the right to make this decision. What we disagree with, is all of you fucking psycho who won’t own up to it and try to hide away the fact and pretend like we don’t know what could have been.
          Yes, babies can die in the hospital. But they are much less likely to do so. This specific baby absolutely died because the mother refused medical care. But you just won’t acknoledge it.
          Your group isn’t presenting the real facts. You aren’t going to tell every knew member of your group: Well this women went overdue and her baby died as a result of it.

          We all agree the mother had the right to make her own medical choice. But she, and all of you, need to own the consequences of her choices. She killed her baby and you cheered her on as she did. That is what happened.

    • Amazed

      Well, the birthers in question ARE obscene caricatures of real women, real mothers, real human beings. Real women don’t need to prove their worth through their vaginas. Real mothers don’t put their babies’ lives to ridiculously high chances of death or injury. Real human beings don’t cheer as a baby is slowly being killed by its idiot of a mother.

      You fail on every count, Steff.

      • Steff Blake

        And that isn’t what we are doing, but I don’t expect you to even attempt to understand my perspective or see me as real.

        • LaMont

          Give a real piece of evidence that homebirth is *safer* than hospital birth with a trained professional. Just repeating “it’s an option that can never be criticized at any time because other options aren’t super-duper perfect” will not cut it.

        • Amazed

          Sure, you don’t use the words but that’s what you’re doing. Then again, my point about your intellectual capacity still stands. You might actually believe that YOU are the savior of mothers and babies. How dare some OB claim our crown, you all likely think. WE are the saviors!

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            crown (snickers in 13 yo fashion)

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          Seeing you as real is not the same as seeing you as sensible. Neither feminism nor patriotism is helped by uncritical cheering.

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          Seeing you as real is not the same as seeing you as sensible. Neither feminism nor patriotism is helped by uncritical cheering.

        • Platos_Redhaired_Stepchild

          No, you’re also doing it for bragging rights over your mommy blogger pals who “wimped out” and didn’t “go all the way with ncb”!

    • gryffindorprefect

      Seriously, unassisted? Please look for my post lower down. No culture in history has encouraged unassisted births! In fact usually you had at least a dozen women helping you. Why any woman would go unassisted just boggled my mind.

      Her anger comes from people choosing to rewrite history and medical knowledge to fit their agenda, killing the babies who had no choice when you chose your “researched” birth method. Did you forget about that baby? It seems like most of you do. You care more about the birth than the baby at the end, which is sickening.

      • Cody

        Unassisted birth is a form of punishment in some places.

        • gryffindorprefect

          Really? Please send me published articles in anthropological journals detailing this, because this is my area of study for 20+ years and I have never heard this. Looking at your prior posts, it looks like you have absolutely no experience in my field and are probably regurgitating some NCB lies fourth hand.

          • Cody

            I can actually give you a personal story. I’m not going to do it here. Do you have an email address? Otherwise, I’ll create one and we can communicate that way.

            Based on your response, I think you think I was questioning your expertise. Not so. I agree with just about everything you have said.

          • gryffindorprefect

            So you can give me one example of it? That does not count as some societies practicing it. That is one incident in one society which proves nothing. Anecdotes are garbage in academia.

          • Cody

            I know they are. There are places that do use forced unassisted childbirth as punishment. I can give you a personal story. Everything else is hearsay but widely acknowledged as being something that happens in the area. I’m not giving details here because I’d prefer to stay anonymous.
            Its really sad and disgusting.

          • fiftyfifty1

            Why beat around the bush? If you have an example of a society that uses unassisted childbirth as punishment, just say it. e.g. The —– people do it. Or, the ——– religious subgroup in —– does it.

          • Cody

            Ya I shouldn’t have said anything in the first place. It was impulsive reaction to something I’m emotional about. I just wasn’t expecting to get called out. I’m not going to delete my comments because that’s not something I generally do.

            I’d really love to speak to the person who says that they are an anthropologist who studies unassisted birth. But I’m not going to talk about further at this time.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            I don’t get it. What is the problem with providing the info?

            All it looks to me is that you were bluffing.

          • Cody

            I’m aware of that and it’s driving me crazy right now.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            So just answer the question. It’s really easy to fill in the blanks that 50501 provided above.

          • Cody

            If I delete my Disqus account do my comments go with it? My issue here is not you guys knowing this piece of information. It’s that people I know will be able to tell who I am based on the information shared in this comment section.

          • o_O

            I have responded.

          • o_O

            I responded above.

          • Eater of Worlds

            I can’t even see how proponents of UC could use the unassisted childbirth as punishment as a recommendation for their practice. The woman was sent away to encourage the death of her child or herself. They know its dangerous, that’s why it’s given as punishment. That doesn’t mean people should do it for shits and giggles.

          • o_O

            This is why I think people who try and UC on purpose are privileged and completely detached from reality.

          • Cody

            I realize that would be anecdotal, but you may still find it interesting.

          • o_O

            I deleted my profile so that I could answer this question sort of comfortably.

            I grew up in West Africa, specifically The Gambia. A friend of ours was made to give birth by herself as punishment for conceiving a baby outside of her marriage. This punishment was imposed by her husband’s family. This was supposedly quite common in the area but I can’t confirm that. This is a country, that widely practices FGM (more than 90% compliance) and sends offending women to witch camps. While I agree that generally speaking, unassisted birth is not something that generally happens, it does happen in some areas and is cultural.

          • MaineJen

            Ugh. That’s awful

          • o_O

            I know. It’s horrible.

          • please continue

            What happened to her? Was she okay? Did the baby live?

          • o_O

            They both survived.

    • Azuran

      Well as a medical provider, I take full responsibility for the outcomes of my recommendations.
      I don’t expect anyone to ‘obey’ me, I fully respect the decision to every single one of my clients, but I make sure that they are well informed about the REAL risks of their choices and that they are ready to take responsibility if things go wrong. And when I recommend something and it goes wrong, I take full responsibility. Whenever I have bad outcomes, I question myself about what I could have done differently.

      Why are we angry? Because you stood by and did nothing while a baby died. You are right that the mother had the right to refuse medical help. But any half decent human being would have still advised her to seek help. How can you sleep with yourself after you ENCOURAGED her? You share a part of responsibility in the death of this baby.

    • Karen in SC

      So you had an unassisted birth and your baby didn’t die. You really didn’t have to “shoulder” anything.

    • Sheven

      ” You aren’t a person who is even capable of having a conversation about these very complex issues, like bodily autonomy and medical rights.”

      This is a lovely way of shifting the argument. No one is having a conversation about bodily autonomy and medical rights, because everyone here has already said that these women have the right to bodily autonomy.

      The conversation we’re having is whether or not a group that cheers on a person doing something dangerous bears responsibility for the result of that person’s actions. And, of course, that’s the conversation you don’t want to have. You want to pretend that having a group dedicated to encouraging and supporting higher risk pregnancies bears no responsibility when it does what higher risk anything is by definition guaranteed to do–kills someone.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        No one is having a conversation about bodily autonomy and medical rights, because everyone here has already said that these women have the right to bodily autonomy.

        Of course. It’s not a question of bodily autonomy, which even concedes, it’s an issue of stupidity and monsters who support it.

      • sdsures

        What about the baby’s bodily autonomy?

        Doesn’t a baby have the right to be born healthy, and to have parents who care about its welfare more than getting bragging rights on Facebook for going postdates or refusing to feed it?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      So if unassisted birth is all on your shoulders, surely the blame is all on your shoulders if the baby dies, right? So you should have no problem with me insisting that women take responsibility for their irresponsible decisions and yet you do. Why is that?

    • rosewater1

      And you will fall off yours.

      It’s easy to take responsibility when your outcomes have all been good. And if one hadn’t been?

      Yes, these women have real histories, hopes and babies. And now many of them have tragedies to live with instead of babies. Have you asked them how they feel?

      Who speaks for the rights of the babies? Who advocates for their rights? They wanted to be born. To live. But whether they want to admit it or not, their mothers thought they knew more and better than any medical professional could know. Yes, it is obscene that this is what was more important to them.

      How does it feel to disregard those dead babies who have no life while holding your moral high ground?

      YOU and any woman who advocates ignoring medical advice to chase the dream of the perfect birth have blood on your hands. YOU could be influencing another woman to ignore medical advice and contributing to another tragedy. And yet you tone troll Dr. Teuter.

      My God.

    • Platos_Redhaired_Stepchild

      You really are up your own ass, aren’t you? Since when did “empowerment” become acting like a selfish showoff jerk that kills their kid so they can have bragging rights on f–king facebook?

    • Cyanide Lollipop

      So it’s empowerment at any cost now, is it? Enjoy the empowerment and the bragging rights that come with it – if you think blatant stupidity and playing Russian roulette with your baby’s life is worth bragging about. A very high price was paid for that privilege.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Besides, empowerment is manifested in the ability to choose, not in the choice that is made. IOW, it is just as empowering to choose to have an induction at 41 weeks as to choose not to.

        In fact, that we have the ability to make that choice to be induced or to have a c-section, and not just having to wait, is an example of empowerment

    • MI Dawn

      We’re angry because A BABY DIED WHEN IT DIDN’T NEED TO DIE!! We’re angry that the women in that group cheered her on instead of telling her to see a doctor and deliver a LIVING BABY. We believe in bodily autonomy. However, in this instance SOMEONE DIED WHO DIDN’T NEED TO DIE.

      Why the he** can’t you people see that? You don’t give a flying f*** about the baby.

    • sdsures

      “Every woman researches her birth”

      Pardon me, it’s the BABY’S birth, you fool.

      • Empress of the Iguana People

        Yeah, that still takes me a minute to figure out.

    • moto_librarian

      I’ll go ahead and say it. If you are more invested in your own selfish desire to have a birth experience rather than a living child, I question your fitness to be a parent. Birth is one day out of a lifetime. It is important because it has to go well for all of the other days to follow, but compared to the wealth of experiences one has as a parent, it’s not all that important.

    • Russell Jones

      >”I am writing this for the women who follow you.”

      That statement is transparently false.

  • Cody

    Yes, you are responsible if you give someone medical advice that you are not qualified to give. This whole Facebook group is questionable.

  • Sandra

    I really don’t understand these women… I am a mother of three which were all high risk plus I had a stillborn baby girl and 6 miscarriages… When I hear putting their baby at risk for some stupid ideas that “it bad for the baby” it makes me so upset… Who cares how the baby comes out, as long as it comes out alive…. Have the c-section, get induced etc… A mother should never experience holding their dead baby in their arms… Personally, I think these women who choose to put their unborn baby at risk should be charged with attempted murder and if the baby dies with murder…. We live in a first world county where a baby should not die of things that are preventable like this….

    • Heidi_storage

      I’m so sorry for your losses.

    • Steff Blake

      Unfortunately the rates of mothers dying is better in some “3rd world” countries than here. We are the only nation of our economy and size that has a rising maternal death rate. That doesn’t count the close calls and morbidity.

      • Amazed

        Again, thanks for proving my point about the intellectual limitation of the women falling for groups like the one we’re discussing. No sound decision re: anything could be expected of a birther who believes this crap.

      • Nick Sanders

        Bullshit, show me the stats.

      • swbarnes2

        Mortality stats in the US are bad precisely because women don’t get access to the 21st century medical technology that would help them. To the extent that rates are improving in other areas, it’s because those women have access to that technology that vain privileged women are so sure they do not require, due to their moral superiority.

        The answer is not to have more women giving birth as if they were desperately poor and isolated 14 year olds in Afghanistan, but for women to have access to health care throughout their whole lives.

        • LaMont

          Also, our numbers are *rising* due to some changes in how maternal death is being counted, which I don’t believe are happening in other countries.

          • sdsures

            What are these changes in how maternal death is being counted?

      • Karen in SC

        Most of those maternal deaths are due to chronic conditions, particularly cardiac conditions. Also, T1 diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. More than half are African American. We are also the only developed country without universal health care. It’s not the fault of obstetrics. Open your eyes, have some fun with CDC Wonder database and search causes of death, etc.

    • Amazed

      So sorry for your losses but happy that you have three living children.

  • Connie Parris

    Not forming on an opinion of the tragic events that have passed. It’s clear the group is there to support women through the end stages of their pregnancy.

    Absolutely correct that modern medicine, studies and research has given medical professionals guidelines to minimise tragic events and have the highest success rate and birth, but for a few percentage of people they find their labour goes smoothly when they are given an extra week or two to go into labour naturally before being given drugs/induction methods or planned c-sections.

    If people read through these support groups you would find there is a plethora of women talking about pregnancies and about how extra checking and monitoring is great and many posts about how successful inductions are and how perfect is it for certain woman but then not for some. They are posts about women supporting each other mentally, best positions for successful labour and generally women sharing their experiences.

    Aside from that, you have taken what is to be the most terrifying, challenging, exhausting and tragic experience anyone could go through just for a few website and blog hits. Instead of posting screenshots you could have just made an article supporting your views without mentioning groups, names or people. For an Harvard educated individual it’s a shame you hadn’t the knowledge to do that and it’s a disgrace you would use someone’s life experience like that.

    The group is designed to offer support for women that just want to wait that little bit extra to go into labour naturally, none of the woman advise to not see medical professionals or seek medical emergency help when needed. In fact a lot of posts are about counting kicks and how to recognise decrease in kicks and movement.

    There are hundreds of posts a day with positive things and to try and take something away from women is shameful. The group is there to inspire, share and look towards positive birth experiences and you have taken one tragic event and broadcast it to thousands as if it was your own?

    Did you even speak to the poor mother if you could share her story with the world? It was hers and no-one else’s to share. You should be ashamed to tear apart another woman like this.

    • Sheven

      Corporation: “We’re designed to inspire, share and look towards positive birth experiences. Okay. So our product might have killed one baby. How dare you share that with the world?”

      Medical Group: “We’re designed to inspire, share and look towards positive birth experiences. Okay. So our advice might have killed one baby. How dare you share that with the world?”

      Facebook Group: “We’re designed to inspire, share and look towards positive birth experiences. Okay. So our encouragement might have killed one baby. How dare you share that with the world?”

      We don’t care what you are designed to do. We care what you did.

      • Connie Parris

        Do you even know what in the group we talk about?? We ask everyday how everyone is getting on? How active baby is? how to support and share experience of our positive inductions?

        Not one post we have is about not seeing a doctor, nurse or midwife?

        Most woman read through the group for positive birth experience induction or no induction. You have no idea what you are doing?

        A friends baby’s heart stopped in the middle of labour while she was in the hospital and there was nothing any doctor, nurse or midwife could do.. are the doctors and nurses now murderers?? You don’t even know the circumstances of the birth so how are you so sure of what Dr. Amy is saying?

        Maybe this tragic event happened at 44weeks while IN the hospital??
        Bore off.
        Grow a vagina and try push out a baby and maybe i’ll listen to what you have to say

        • Heidi_storage

          I am extremely happy to hear from group members who posted comments that told the mother to go to the hospital ASAP, that what she was trying to do was risky and irresponsible. Did you? Did anyone? If so, please post screenshots!

        • Heidi_storage

          I second the post you’re responding to. I have a vagina, and have pushed three babies out of it. Will you listen now?

          • Sheven

            I wish I could promote that statement. I wish they would put it right at the top of their page. The dangerous thing about these groups is the fact that they don’t start out being stupid and crazy.

            It’s like a cult. They don’t tell everyone who wanders in the door that the spaceship is coming. They start out by providing community and support, and then start planting inaccurate or outdated information, and then the real bad stuff starts. If we could get Connie Parris introducing the group with, “Giving birth qualifies you to give obstetric advice! If you haven’t given birth don’t even talk to us,” a lot more women would be able to avoid the “support” right away.

          • Kq

            Cult survivor here. This is definitely cult-think and cult behavior.

          • AndreaRealMPH

            <3

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          I have a vagina and pushed 2 out. What’s more, my hippy mother pushed 6 out, three of us living. She had lost my brother’s co-trips to miscarriage, carried my sister’s dead co-trips what was likely months, and my elder sister was stillborn at 8 months. And she’d have smacked me upside the head and scalded my ears with her opinion if I went against doctors’ advice and lost one of my precious children because i insisted on waiting for labor to start naturally.
          Long story short. Nature be damned. Half the time she’s trying to kill us.

        • Sheven

          “A friends baby’s heart stopped in the middle of labour while she was in the hospital and there was nothing any doctor, nurse or midwife could do.. are the doctors and nurses now murderers??”

          Yeah. I knew a girl who was killed by a sober driver. Does that make a group celebrating tipsy driving not responsible when one of their members gets kudos for getting behind the wheel drunk and plows into a kid?

          “Grow a vagina and try push out a baby and maybe i’ll listen to what you have to say”

          I wish I could promote this statement a thousand times so people could see the kind of ignorant and illogical “supporter” your group produces. If you think that giving birth makes a person qualified to give obstetric advice that’s all anyone needs to know about your warped attitude.

        • Nick Sanders

          It’s amazing that you don’t understand the world of difference between “nothing could have been done” and “nothing was done”.

        • Cyndi

          Yes, babies die in the hospital as well; I’ve seen it. What doesn’t happen is that the medical providers don’t stand around saying, “Well, maybe if you would try a different position. Maybe let’s get you to walk around some and that’ll get baby’s heart restarted. Well, whatever; we’ll be back in an hour or two and see what’s up with this baby.” That would be the equivalent of this case: a post dates mom with ROM > 24 hours, mec staining and a baby with a transverse lie, “Help FaceBook mommy group, give me encouragement.”

        • Amazed

          Should the vagina you demand be capable to push out a LIVING baby, or does a dead one suits you just as well? Never mind, we all know the answer.

          What makes you think you’re this important to us that we would want YOU to listen to us? As I commented on the previous post, your group is a coven of intelectually limited women who repeat to each other that they’re smart. Thanks for proving it so beautifully, you proud vagina.

          • Sheven

            I noticed that, too! Say that they helped kill a baby and nothing. Imply that they’re not “educated” and “intelligent” and it brings down a swarm. This group is what lets them see themselves and intellectual. The death is sad, of course, but it’s the ego blow that these post deal out that’s really bothering them.

          • Amazed

            That’s what I think.

        • Cody

          Connie I think the problem is that the group is presenting itself as having some type of expertise in an area that it doesn’t.

          When a woman posts something on line, we have no idea what her medical history is or that of her baby. Some of the comments could certainly have been construed as giving medical advice. As far as I know, none of the people in the group are qualified to do so.

          A good midwife or doctor would never respond that way to someone online. They’d write “I don’t know your medical history, you should talk to your medical care provider”

        • MaineJen

          1 vagina. 2 babies. 0 @#$%s given.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            Oh, did you have IVF, too? jk

          • MaineJen

            LOL. I see what you did there 😉

        • MI Dawn

          I have a vagina and pushed out 2 babies. You, my dear, are disgusting. And you are assuming that Sheven is 1)male and 2)has not children. Remember what happens when you assume. However, you’ve already made an a** of yourself.

          Oh, and bless your little heart.

        • maidmarian555

          I note that you have mentioned several times that the group concentrates on ‘positive’ birth experiences. Tell me, what happens to these loss mothers when their experience isn’t positive? Do you keep their stories on the timeline so that in future, anyone who happens to stumble across your group gets a balanced view of what can happen when you go post-dates? Or do you kick the mother out of the group and scrub all references to her and her loss? Because we’ve seen that happen time and time again within the natural birth community. When things do go wrong, the mother is erased and the very people who were not five minutes past cheering her and her risky decisions on abandon her to deal with her trauma alone. You people are quick to demonise Dr T for bringing these tragedies to light but the truth of the matter is if it were left to you people, these truths would be firmly swept under the rug and out of sight. You’re angry because you don’t want anyone to know the horrors that you all bear responsibility for, not because you truly care for that ‘poor mother’ and her dead baby.

        • Mark

          “Grow a Vagina?

          What a sexist remark to make. Do you have to experience childbirth in order to be an obstetrician? Do you need to have cancer in order to be an oncologist? Mental Illness in order to be a psychiatrist? Have to be homesexual to support gay marriage?

          While I would not deny some useful insight in terms of practicing medicine of a condition you personally experienced, no doubt.

          On the flip side having ‘experienced’ a condition or illness may make one not so objective? A person who experienced chemotherapy may not have the most objective view of chemotherapy based on their ‘experience’. Some people.

          Seems to me that there are some women who because they ‘experienced’ childbirth now are unable to look objectively at the processe? Sexist you think? Maybe, maybe not. Most women do have a strong maternal instinct to have healthy babies. Some others, oh I don’t know, Ten Month Mama’s, are unable to objectively look at the risks and don’t understand the risks they are taking in order to have their children ‘fully baked’ or to let the child decide when to be born.

          Find that harsh? Well to me, lacking objectivity is the most generous way to describe this type of behavior.

        • Daleth

          I have a vagina! So that means you might listen to me? Awesome.

          A friends baby’s heart stopped in the middle of labour while she was in the hospital and there was nothing any doctor, nurse or midwife could do.. are the doctors and nurses now murderers??

          The heart of a healthy full-term baby does not just suddenly stop in the middle of labor. Long before stopping, it goes from a healthy heartbeat to the heartbeat of a baby in distress. The change is visible on the heart tracings shown on and printed out by the monitoring machine.

          When that happens, the doctor generally suggests that a c-section might be wise, or that if the heartbeat gets worse or doesn’t get better within X time, then a c-section would really be a good idea. And mom says yes or no.

          But if mom refused to have a fetal heart monitor on during labor, then the doctors and nurses can’t detect the changes in heart tones that indicate fetal distress. And if mom says no to the recommended c-section, then there’s nothing the doctors and nurses can do but wait and hope.

          Did your friend decline a monitor, or decline a c-section? If she was not offered heart monitoring or a c-section, then yes, the hospital bears responsibility. But if she was offered those things and declined, why would you blame the hospital?

        • Charybdis

          I sense an incomplete story here. Your friend was in the hospital during labor. Did she start there or was she an emergency transfer from a midwife? Did she walk in herself during early labor and was admitted or was it a “hurry and get me to the hospital, honey, something isn’t right/hurts too much/something feels wrong?” scenario?
          If it was a midwife transfer from home or birth center, what was in the mother’s chart/medical notes? Pulse ox, blood pressure, fetal heart rate (Rate means a number of beats per minute, not “Strong heart tones”), mother’s heart rate, GBS status, any antibiotics for GBS positive mothers, what’s she dilated to, effacement, baby’s station, have her membranes ruptured, how long have they been ruptured, what did the amniotic fluid look like, is gestational diabetes a factor in this pregnancy, mother’s age, # of previous pregnancies/deliveries, any of this information in her chart/notes? You know, all the medically important things that need to be known BEFORE the ER or doctors can evaluate the situation and make recommendations.
          You can’t just show up at the hospital, tell them you are in labor and then start dictating how you want things. The docs have to provide you with the pros and cons of all the options, but the decision is yours to make. You can refuse to have a heplock, refuse fetal monitoring, refuse medications, hell, you can even refuse a CS if you want. Body autonomy and all that, you know. BUT, you have to be willing to live with the consequences of your actions/inactions and decisions. If you refuse to allow continuous fetal monitoring, you run the risk of missing decels that indicate fetal distress/non-tolerance of labor. This is not the doctor’s fault, however you will blame them.
          Doctors have to clean up the messes that CPM’s, home birthers, unassisted birthers, HBA4C’ers, etc dump into their ER’s when things go sideways. They have to take a shambolic situation NOT OF THEIR OWN MAKING and try to sort it out, often while being hamstrung by the patient’s bullheadedness and the “care provider/midwife’s” determination to confound the situation as much as they can.

        • Spamamander, pro fun ruiner

          I have a vagina! I pushed 3 babies out of it! And it’s fucking stupid to encourage people to ignore medical advice and increase the risk of their baby dying in utero so it can “decide” when to come “earthside”. So um do I get credit?

        • moto_librarian

          You know, every time that I interact with one of you NCB cultists, I come to the same conclusion. You have no real accomplishments other than what you can do with your vagina and breasts. That’s a terribly limited view of life, Connie, to say nothing of the fact that you will get old and no longer be able to define yourself by your ability to push a baby out of your vagina. Your children will also grow up, and what then? Seriously, get a hobby, an education, a career, anything that allows you to have an identity separate from the limitations of biology. And while you’re at it, you might consider your moral compass. Because anyone who can make excuses for her role in a preventable tragedy needs to spend some time in deep reflection.
          – Signed, a woman who did natural childbirth right the first time, and has pushed two babies out of her vagina

    • Amazed

      Dr Amy insists that deadly advisors bear some responsibility when their next accomplice/victim draws the short stick! Oh the horrorz!

      You can just as well not spare the effort to defend the undefensible. We’ve seen such groups all too often. We’ve also seen the result of your advices.

      I’m starting to think that natural-mindedness isn’t an (incredibly privileged) view of life. I think it’s a diagnosis. As you’ve just proved here. We aren’t blind.

      Oh, and you can also drop the “poor mother’ crap. There is enough information out there for everyone who truly cares to access. The outrageous woman who gave birth to this poor baby also had access to it. And she was likely an accomplice in cheering other women to slowly suffocate/starve/whatnot their babies to death as well.

    • Valerie

      “The group is designed to offer support for women that just want to wait that little bit extra to go into labour naturally…”

      That’s the problem. It’s like saying “This group is to support mothers who don’t use car seats.” Would you see a problem with that? What do you think the consequences would be of a “support” group that spread misinformation about the dangers of car seats? More kids would die. That’s the same thing that is going on here- mothers are encouraged to make dangerous choices and kids die as a result.

    • CSN0116

      It’s a virtual heroin shooting gallery: we don’t _force_ you to take the smack, but fuck we’ll provide a private space where no one can see or judge you while you learn how to do it, trade tips and tricks, share “knowledge,” get encouragement from people also doing it, help you avoid the people who want you to stop and grant you health… BUT what you CHOOSE to do is up to you.

      Yeah, a couple of people OD in our gallery each month. Meh, it was their choice. We only exist as a place for them to come if they want.

      ^^^that’s how fucking dumb you are.

    • Heidi

      Give me a break! Because no one literally said, “Don’t seek out medical help,” doesn’t mean they aren’t culpable and doesn’t mean they encouraged this woman to get medical help! If someone posted they intended to murder their spouse and asked what kind of gun would be the best, and you provided them with your opinions on the best kind of gun and congratulated them on their future plans, you are going to turn around and say you didn’t tell them to murder their spouse? Sure, you didn’t tell them to murder their spouse, but never once did you advise them not to or give them a healthy, non-death alternative to committing murder.

      And puh-leeze, quit with the fake feminism. “You should be ashamed to tear apart another woman like this.” Uh, no, you all should be ashamed that you’re more interested in defending your group against a blog post than preventing a tragedy like this happening again.

    • TsuDhoNimh

      “for a few percentage of people they find their labour goes smoothly
      when they are given an extra week or two to go into labour naturally
      before being given drugs/induction methods or planned c-sections.”

      And they don’t seem to care that this smoothness and naturalness for them happens at a time when the risk of fetal death is rapidly rising because of the ageing placenta.

      How many babies are they willing to kill from neglect to have this smooth and natural birth experience?

    • fiftyfifty1

      Ten Month Mamas is not “there to support women through the end stages of their pregnancy.” It’s there to provide an echo chamber for women who are making reckless choices. It’s just like the pro-ana and pro-mia websites that encourage girls to resist treatment for their anorexia and bulimia.

      • Cody

        That is a completely appropriate comparison.

        • fiftyfifty1

          Yes, Ten Month Mamas and pro-ana and pro-mia sites are “tip of the iceburg” type groups. They may be the “out there” examples, but they are supported by much larger numbers of people who base their beliefs on the same philosophies. Ten Month Mamas exists because “Doctors are too impatient” and “Natural is better” exist. Proponents of NCB can act shocked, but really this is their own teachings taken to their logical conclusions. Just like when family members are shocked when their daughters diet down to BMIs of 14, but then tell them to their faces “Of course it’s important not to get fat, but you’ve taken it too far. It’s not bad to add some healthy carbohydrate, like quinoa.”

    • Karen in SC

      Wait a “little extra bit”? While the complications piled up?

    • swbarnes2

      No. There is no percentage of women who have personal empirical evidence that going very far post-dates is better for them than getting an induction or C-section. There are just women who are very very vain, and have chosen to hinge their personal self-worth on their biological functions working absolutely perfectly.

      Are you going to tell us with a straight face that all the positive encouragement this mother received led to a positive birth outcome?

    • MaineJen

      I didn’t see a lot of caution or kick-counting in the comments this poor woman received. I saw a lot of encouragement to wait it out, even though she was 44+ weeks, had ruptured membranes with meconium and a transverse-lying baby. Exactly WHAT about that situation makes you think that encouraging her to stay home and wait was still a good idea? If that is the kind of support your group gives, it’s very dangerous.

    • PrimaryCareDoc

      “wait that little bit extra”? The group is called 10 month mamas! They’re talking about waiting up to an additional 4 weeks!

    • Platos_Redhaired_Stepchild

      “The poor mother” published her story on the freaking internet for the whole world to see!

  • susannunes

    Thank you so much for this blog. I am not a mother, but I have for years recognized the “natural” childbirth, breastfeeding, and all the rest of the movement was little more than quack science, that it is little more than woman-hating nonsense designed to guilt women. Unfortunately, a lot of women and babies have been harmed or even killed because of these cults.

  • Andrew Broselow, MD

    Keep fighting the good fight Dr T.. After a career delivering babies I enjoy your posts immensely.

  • gryffindorprefect

    Let me put this out there, an a cultural anthropologist: NEVER IN THE HISTORY OF THE HUMAN SPECIES HAVE WOMEN BIRTHED UNASSISTED. EVER. (Nor have they birthed in water). In fact, women usually have many women in attendance, pretty much all their female relatives, usually a lot of their husband’s female relatives, and the community’s midwife. These women also teach the new mother to breastfeed and will often assist in breastfeeding the new baby themselves while the mother builds up her supply because they understand that milk just does not magically appear right after birth and babies will die without the milk of the other females of the community.

    So hearing about these unassisted birth people, their love of water births, and the complete lack of education they have about milk supply makes me want to smash some sense into them using my thesis. And, not to brag, but it’s a pretty thick thesis. And yes I unfortunately know there are several anthropologists that are big names in the lactivist cult.

    • Sheven

      Tell me if this is a fair statement. It seems to me that women have midwives and female relatives around because they want as much knowledge and experience as possible available to them. In this way, getting an obstetrician is a continuation of tradition, rather than a departure from it. You get the person who knows the most by your side when you labor, whether that’s your mom, a midwife, or an OB-GYN.

      • gryffindorprefect

        You are dead on. These women know what can go wrong from experience because they don’t have doctors and thus have attended many births. So they are the laboring woman’s best bet of her and her baby coming through birth alive through tricks and skills they have had to learn. And they usually start the girls going to births as soon as they start menstruating, so they start learning young.

        But of course the difference is they have no other choice, the NCB people do and use racism to defend their choices. I can guarantee you that I have yet to meet any woman on my 20+ years of observation that would turn down a hospital birth if she was lucky enough to be able to have one. You should hear what one woman said to me about people here turning down hospitals and vaccinations after we were discussing my society. There is no exact translations but “dumb f-ing c-words” is as close as it comes. But much much more colorful.

    • sdsures

      It’s poverty porn (my husband’s phrase)!

      • gryffindorprefect

        Tell your husband I am stealing that. Perfect description. Hell, it works with a lot of this earth mother nonsense I have seen. Do they not understand that these mothers down in this fabled Africaland would kill to *not* have to do things the “natural” way? Noble savage trope for a new generation.

        • sdsures

          I told him. He’s very pleased!

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      #Ravenclaw

      • gryffindorprefect

        Ravenclaw is the only house not represented by my family. My husband is a Hufflepuff (and proud of it long before it was made cool by Newt Scamander) and my daughter is a Slytherin. And I’m pretty sure the cats are Slytherin too.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          Have you seen the show “Puffs”? You should.

        • BeatriceC

          Pretty sure my cockatoo is a ravenclaw. Not sure on the macaw. Probably slytherin. But amazon I know for sure. He’s definitely slytherin. He’s even the right color. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d22bc709a0ac03c2a075d44f2c47d91e62c53cd799bd4e606d66f535c4753023.jpg

          • Amazed

            Amazing Niece is a hatstall. She’s smart enough to cool herself (it’s bloody hot over here. 39 Celsius the day before) by lying down on the floor and pressing her cheek against it. Also, she dared explore the bread-baking machine and the washing machine in the same day and found out that they don’t eat humans. She’s so brave.

          • sdsures

            Yay! Brave indeed!

          • Azuran

            XD Look at him, acting all badass with his butter knife. He looks like he’s mugging people.

          • BeatriceC

            He thinks he’s hot stuff. But he grumbles at me and does what I ask him to do anyway because he knows I’m gonna win. We’ve hashed that out a few times, but most recently the week MrC was out of town and he got sick, so I had to get him to the vet twice and also give him shots every other day.

          • sdsures

            Don’t give him ideas! He might be able to read what you post her. 😉 Birds, especially parrots, are pretty smart!

    • TsuDhoNimh

      “(Nor have they birthed in water).”

      Even seals come out onto the beach to give birth, and they are far more aquatic than humans.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      I would say the same thing about the Baby Friendly nonsense. The first thing they do is insist that parents deal with the kids on their own, without any help from nursing staff. Oh, just have your family around, right? But if your family isn’t there? Then you are on your own.

      Just like humans have always done, right? Throughout history, the approach has to been to leave new parents alone to fend for themselves, right?

      • gryffindorprefect

        Yes! There is never a time where women do not have help. Hell, usually the first two weeks the other women do the majority of the infant care so mom can recover, then they ease her in. And that doesn’t matter if it is her first baby or her 10th. They understand that the woman’s body needs time to heal.

      • KeeperOfTheBooks

        And as some friends have experienced in BFHI hospitals, it can’t even be “family” as such. One was told that her husband being on deployment wasn’t a good enough excuse for her mom to stay overnight with her at the hospital instead–it might “interfere with parental bonding!” Another was told that only the baby’s father, not mom’s sister, could stay at the hospital overnight, even though dad wasn’t available. Well baby nursery? Of course we don’t have those!
        Total, utter madness.

        • sdsures

          *speechless with rage*

          • KeeperOfTheBooks

            Oh, those situations were pure, unadulterated fuckups of the first magnitude. In the mom’s sister situation, mom was literally falling unconscious with no warning and while holding the baby (really strong anti-anxiety drugs given during the C-section). The nurse’s solution was for mom’s sister to sit in the waiting room until mom started to feel tired, and then it was mom’s responsibility to call her sister and say so, at which point the sister would be allowed to come into the room and help until mom woke up again…
            Fortunately, the next nurse on shift had a brain, but…yeah. Absolute insanity, and one hell of a lawsuit waiting to happen.

    • Kq

      Ten points to Gryffindor!

  • Sheven

    I keep coming back to this. There aren’t two kinds of responsibility, one if you succeed and one if you fail. If these women would have felt good about themselves for “helping” a woman whose child was born safe, they need to feel bad about themselves for “helping” a woman whose child died.

    • KQ Not Signed In

      But it only counts if it makes them feel good! Didn’t you know that? Otherwise it’s “negative energy” and needs to be deleted.

    • Cyndi

      Exactly!

  • Empress of the Iguana People

    I like surprise birthdays, too, but when the docs said “we think it’s a good idea to induce you tonight, if that’s okay with you,” I said “Yep.”
    If i didn’t have an on-call sitter lined up, i may’ve begged off until their father came, but that’s the only reason I’d have waited. It’s hard to watch a toddler when you’re in labor.

  • Heidi_storage

    Me to my children: “Don’t give your sibling any bad ideas!”
    Also me to my children: “I don’t care if he/she gave you that bad idea; you didn’t have to do it!”

    Homebirth, especially with additional risk factors: Don’t do it, don’t encourage it, or you bear some responsibility for preventable catastrophes. Simple enough concept for young children, but apparently not for Facebook “support” groups.

    • Steph858

      I’m now imagining all these women triple-dog daring each other to give birth in increasingly dangerous ways. That’s about right for their level of maturity.

      No, wait, that’s not right. Even 8-year-old me would have refused to do a dare that dangerous, friends’ clucking be damned.

  • Azuran

    So, a baby died because of them, but Dr. Tuteur is the dangerous one.

    • Anj Fabian

      Basically.

      I believe in the Three Rules:
      1) Don’t do it.
      2) If you do it, don’t get caught.
      3) If you get caught, see Rule 1.

      These people holler because they got caught. The best way to not get called out for encouraging someone to do something demonstrably risky and dangerous is not to promote that crap.

    • KQ Not Signed In

      SHE’S MEEEEEEN

      She makes them use their thinky-brains and that huuuurts.

      And she makes them feel uncomfortable and uneasy and like they might not know everything and might even have been…WRONG…about something.

      Honestly, Dr. Amy already nailed this issue with her posts on Narcissistic Injury. – and to cite a less academic source than she does
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcissistic_rage_and_narcissistic_injury

    • JDM

      Adding my voice to KQ Not Signed In and Anj Fabian, who’ve already made similar points to add to yours, it IS dangerous to face the consequences of your beliefs. Dr. Tuteur made it harder for them to ignore. If you face those consequences, and they’re horrible, you just might have to modify your beliefs.

      A lot of people find that terrifying. Therefore dangerous to their status quo.