I had a phone consult with an interstate twin mama during the week and was once again struck by the risk-based and fear-based care happening out there.

“My priority is healthy babies and healthy mum”, doctor’s reply to this pregnant twin mother who was making decisions about her birth experience. Sigh. How do you think this comment made this mother feel?

It may seem like a fairly innocuous comment at first, but when a care provider insinuates that the mother believes her experience of birth is more important than healthy babies, they are suggesting that it is EITHER/OR… “You can EITHER have healthy babies, OR you can have a positive birth experience, which is it going to be?”. This is simply not the case AND I CALL BULLSHIT!

What this actually is, is an offensive, fear-based strategy designed to have women bend to policy and protocol without any consideration given to the mother’s wellbeing and mental health.

Surely it goes without saying that the mother – who has chosen to create a human (and got a bonus one!), who nurtures those babies in her womb, who makes informed and carefully considered decisions, who births those babies – wants her and her babies to be healthy. However, that same mother also considers the health of her and her babies AFTER the birth. She knows that those little babies require nurturing and care beyond birth. How then, will she care for those babies, if her mental health and well-being has not been considered during the process of pregnancy and birth?

She makes plans and preparations, she makes choices and decisions, and she does every damn thing she can to ensure that she is safe, her babies are safe, and that their future is safe. She is not preparing for a positive experience of birth to annoy you, or to make your life more difficult, or at the detriment of her babies. She is preparing for her best birth, taking in her unique set of circumstances, so that she can be the best mother she can be. She is asking for your support in this so that she can come away from her birth feeling strong, capable, and prepared for the tough-as-hell journey of mothering newborn twins.

I am truly baffled by this type of care.

We can have healthy babies, a healthy mum, AND a positive birth experience.

We can have a positive double breech vaginal twin birth (like I did), and we can have a positive unplanned twin caesarean birth, and we can have a positive maternal assisted twin caesarean birth, and we can have a positive vaginal birth of Twin A and an unplanned caesarean birth of Twin B (there are SO many types of positive twin birth that can happen!)….AND, we can have healthy mothers AND healthy babies.

It’s not EITHER/OR. Let’s all stop pretending that it is, and instead start providing care that truly supports women.

Want to chat about your twin birth preparation? I offer one-on-one support via Skype or phone and I’d LOVE to help you navigate the sometimes tricky path to positive twin birth. Let’s chat.

 

Elyse Jamieson – Hypnobirthing Australia™/Hypnobubs Practitioner, Doula, & Twin Mama