Good news from the preliminary birthrate data for 2012: Teen births are down to yet another historic low, births to women in their early 20s also fell to an all-time low, the rate of cesarean sections is stabilizing after years of increasing, and fewer babies were born preterm or at low birth weight.
Women will continue to die far too young in South Sudan if public health strategies fail to reach youth before they become sexually active, and policies fail to address the family planning needs of communities.
Exactly the sort of person who would say “Just have the baby” read my essay about the end of my pregnancy and my son’s first month of life, and her interpretation of my point was “pregnancy makes you fat.”
Maternity care in the United States is far more expensive than anywhere else in the developed world, and it’s not because we’re getting more services than women elsewhere.
Just have the baby? Only if you want to. Because no one else can take on any of the pain or risk, and it’s rare that you’ll be helped significantly with the costs—something I think anyone capable of becoming pregnant understands all too well and that forced pregnancy activists work very hard not to acknowledge.
Childbearing is inherently dangerous, and it is time that the risks of pregnancy became a part of our national conversation about contraception and abortion.
Developing nations like Kenya have not experienced the overall decrease in maternal mortality enjoyed across the globe. More needs to be done to address the impact of maternal death on families and communities.
The American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology now says that we should “let nature take its course” during labor. But that change could take years to go into effect, affecting pregnant individuals in the United States and abroad.
The closer I get to my due date, the more offended I am when opponents of women’s rights and of full access to reproductive health care take a lackadaisical attitude towards what pregnancy entails.
Doulas have increased in number and popularity in recent years. But as a whole, what are we working toward? The goal of having a doula for every birth may not be feasible. It also may not bring about the radical change we seek.