Dear First Time Pregnant Ladies,
I need you to know this statistic. I wish I had known it before I had Oddler.
Approx 50% of first births will end in intervention. 25% of those will be (emergency) C-Section, 25%of them forceps or ventouse.
That means 1/2 may not get the vaginal delivery they have been expecting, planning or hoping for. There are lots of things you can do to try and minimise your chances of intervention but ultimately what happens, happens and it is most important YOU DO NOT BLAME YOURSELF FOR ANY OF IT.
I spent too long blaming myself for Oddlers Birth and subsequent time on NICU with Oxygen Starvation, I wish I had realised sooner it wasn’t my fault, but a set of circumstances combined, which ultimately we have all healed from, and for that I count my blessings.
That’s not to say an assisted delivery will always be a traumatic experience. I know many women who have had very positive assisted deliveries. In my own case although forceps were used (and I had in my head that I would rather a C-section than forceps) ultimately they saved my daughter from being any more oxygen deprived and they had to be used- a C-section could have been so much worse. It wasn’t a pleasant experience but it wasn’t the worst part of the birth, so please don’t be too scared of assisted deliveries, they can save the life of you and your baby.
I wish you a lovely positive birth experience that you will cherish, and I wish you all the very best on your journey into motherhood. However if sadly you don’t have that experience (1 in 10 women will suffer birth trauma, and that could be regardless of whether you have a vaginal or an assisted delivery) I beg you not to blame yourself for it and to seek help if you are struggling with what happened. The Birth Trauma Association and Maternity Matters are excellent sources of support and information. I also kept this blog detailing my journey of healing so that I could go onto confidently have Omble, which was a healing wonderful experience that I would be happy to repeat- maybe a home waterbirth next time (though it was still quite ouchy! ;))
Lots of labouring love
P.S Always more than happy to talk to women about birth trauma if you wanted/needed. Email me or contact via twitter.