When Choices are Forced

Earlier this year, in January, I wrote a post Mothers Forced to go Rogue, which told the story of a woman named S and her choice for an unassisted home birth because her local hospitals had banned VBAC.

With the recent National Insitute of Health’s VBAC Panel, and their statement about VBAC and even addressing the Nationwide bans on women simply using their vagina to birth their children after having one, or more surgical births, I had to put my thoughts into worlds.

One thing that bothered me as a woman, and a mother who has had two cesarean sections is the fact that Vaginal Birth after Cesarean, better known as VBAC was repeatedly called a procedure. No, VBAC is not a procedure, it is what your body will do when left the hell alone to do what it knows how to do. The procedure is the cesarean section.

Which got me thinking about the bans on VBAC nationwide. Bans on women using their vagina in a way they see fit. Seems like a horrible violation of human rights, as well as a woman’s simple right to make their own medical choices right?

That is one of the problems.

We see news stories and hospitals talking about how women are choosing to have elective repeat cesareans, and not opting for VBAC, but not all women are going to make the extreme choice that S did to avoid a repeat surgery. If I had a dime for every woman I spoke to online, or in a pregnancy support message board who made a statement about wanting VBAC but their hospital not offering it I would be a millionaire.
Women going along with repeat surgery because home birth is not legal, or the next hospital that offers VBAC is an 8 hour drive away.

My point?

This is as bad as women being denied abortion services. This is a woman’s choice being taken away. Women are not being given real choices, they are not making choices regarding their own medical care.

Hospitals, Doctors and their policies are making these choices FOR women.

Lets compare…

OB/GYN #1, the only one in the whole rural town ONLY offers abortions. Does not provide prenatal care services, does not deliver babies…
Would all the women in the town be forced to have abortions?
Certainly isn’t or would not happen in todays political climate, so why is this VBAC issue continuing and expanding?

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  • curtisp

    subject all parents to such paternalism.  Next time I see someone with an infant in a backpack on a mountain slope should I call CPS?  As an avid hiker I have seen it many times.  A lot could go wrong.  One wrong step and down the rock slide you go.  Parents take risks at all stages of their children’s development.  Perhaps parents could be assigned life coaches and their “better judgment” can override the parents.  At least after birth parents would not be subject to invasive surgical procedures performed by people they have grown to hate.