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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Why doesn't everyone get epidurals

This was a question I came across when I was looking at search terms that came to my site.  It struck me, because it comes from a completely different mindset than mine.  What is happening here is the clash of cultures.  This comes from the mindset that getting rid of pain is the most important factor in childbirth.  For many women though, this is not the case.

For me, when women would look at me after getting their epidural, often times they would ask, "why would you not get this".  I would just smile, because I knew it wouldn't make sense to them at this point.  I understood that for them the pain was the paramount problem of labor, thus the epidural was wonderful.  For me, though, that was not, nor is it still the case.  In fact, when I see women unable to move, with monitors, a cathetor, an iv, and little sensation to their lower limbs, I know I could not do that.  Pain for me is not the paramount factor, the ability to move and be free of iv's and other tubes is.  For me, that is more important than the pain.

I am not putting down those who choose an epidural, I'm just explaining what is more important to me.  I took care of another lady that was terrified of needles...for her that was of more importance.  For another she was claustrophobic and having an epidural was more frightening for her(she had had it both ways too and still preferred natural).  Some appreciate being able to move and feel right afterwards.  Some have had bad epidural experiences.  Some are more afraid of the effects that the epidural might have on them and the baby(and there are some bad side effects that can happen).  Again, it comes down to which plays a more important factor in how we view birth, and really, neither view should be deemed better or worse than the other.  It comes down to our own personal feelings.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is exactly what I think; I love the way you said this! The opinions regarding this don't have to be adversarial regarding this.

Birth is a Journey: Does it have to be life changing?

  • One woman might have to climb on an overfilled boat, risking her life and nearly dying as she escapes over the ocean to come to this land. This experience could certainly be life altering. It may very well color the rest of her life, positively or negatively. (I overcame this amazing struggle and here I am triumphant! OR Holy crap, that was SO hard I don’t know if I can go on! By the way, neither response is “right”. No one would judge the woman with the 2nd response.)
  • One woman may buy an airplane ticket, sit on a comfortable 747 and fly to America with a nice smooth flight and landing. She is happy to be in America. Those welcoming her are glad she is here safe and sound. She may only travel by plane 2-4 times in her life, so it is pretty memorable. But the journey itself probably wouldn’t be life changing; it would simply be a journey.
  • One woman may learn to fly an ultra-light plane to lead a flock of geese into America teaching them to migrate. This experience could certainly be empowering and life altering.