Baby peeks out
at birth arrangement
What about baby's point-of-view?
| Violence & Birth
Here are some links between birth and violence:-
- Frédérick Leboyer's book Birth without Violence revolutionised
the way we perceive the process of birth, urging us to consider birth
from the infant's point of view. Why must a child emerge from the quiet
darkness of the womb into a blaze of blinding light and loud voices?
Why must an infant take its first breath in terror, hanging upside down
as its vulnerable spine is jerked straight? Why must the infant be
separated from its mother after spending nine months inside her
- When Project World Peace premiered the documentary film Freedom for Birth,
one woman that attended talked of her experience of birth, and that of
her sister in eastern Europe. The large male doctor on both occasions
extremely forcefully hit the woman's bump to force the baby out. We
need to demedicalise birth. It must be removed from the control of
medicine and men and returned to women and midwifery.
What about baby's point-of-view?
- The female body is well designed for birth. Women do not trust their bodies, lacking is the sisterhood of midwifery free from medical control, men don't want pussies slackened, and so on. So, there is a pandemic of cesarean birth:
up to 70% in some hospitals. I've read that only perhaps 1% of births
are emergencies, and that is in a society already bereft of trust in
the female body and where women are bullied by patriarchy. What
fraction of a percentage would that drop to in a society where women
are empowered in, valued and celebrated for, their amazing
lifegiving bodies and ability to birth? The scalpel is a knife, a
symbol of violence, and knives really have no place in birth.
- Research shows a definite link between difficult births and serious criminals (e.g. see here and here).
Society needs to demedicalise birth and give it back to women. So they
can birth naturally, organically, peacefully, without violent
- [Birth as Rape:] As a young midwife, I became increasingly aware of
the “walking wounded” women who had suffered in childbirth with their stories
untold. As I came across them by chance in the laundromat or in the supermarket
line, I realized that a huge segment of society was hurting and unhealed,
silenced and invalidated. Sharing the details of their births, they became very
emotional and sometimes deeply agitated and upset. But it wasn’t until fairly
recently, in the last decade or so, that I was able to label this behavior
as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the same syndrome that soldiers suffer
when they return from war and find no one who will listen or can understand
what they have been through. I remember a meeting some years ago with Sheila
Kitzinger during which we discussed women who had had unhappy birthing
experiences and yet, because the baby was fine, felt they had no right to complain.
I told Sheila there was a book in this, but I was not going to write it. She
went on to do research on the topic and soon began a series of workshops
titled, “Birth as Rape.” She found that women who had suffered trauma while
birthing exhibited the same behaviors
as women who had suffered violent sex crimes: loss of voice; loss of
boundaries; loss of trust in primary relationships; unexpected and
inappropriate outbursts; misplaced anger; chronic health problems; etc. (Elizabeth Davis, Midwifery Today, published 2010, accessed online 21 November 2018)
on Earth begins with birth."
(Jeannine Parvati Baker)
Birth Obstacles - Sexual Abuse