The woman who called me today told me that when she mentioned to her OB that she was leaving her practice and going to have a home birth, the doctor looked as if she was going to blow a gasket. “Those aren’t safe!” she almost screamed to this woman, who set up an interview with me for next week.
If they weren’t safe, I wonder how that doctor got here…. all of the women in her family had babies at home since the beginning of time. In fact, there weren’t any hospitals around when her foremothers were preggo; they had to birth in the privacy and comfort of their own homes.
This woman had done her homework and spouted off a number of articles, none of which were familiar to the doctor. She was able to recite statistics, discuss interventions and how they lead to unnecessary sections and talk in terms of comparative safety between home and hospital. She reminded the doctor where the USA stands in terms of maternal and infant morbidity and mortality — very low on the totem pole. When the doctor realized that this woman was actually serious about having her baby at home, in desperation, she pulled out her ace: “We have an operating room not two minutes down the hall from you!!” she boasted/implored/ proclaimed/beseeched.
“Precisely,” responded my maybe-client. “And you use it all the time, even when it isn’t necessary.”