In fact, C-section moms should be extra proud of themselves.
This day in age, there are many birthing options that are available to the soon to be a mom. Natural birth, natural birth with an epidural, home birth, water birth, cesarean; the list can be quite daunting when deciding which route you will take.
Many pregnant women decide that they would like to try and give birth naturally. Some women decide that they would like to schedule their cesarean. Both ways are perfectly viable and just.
Unfortunately, there is a stigma on cesarean birth that draws many women away from it. It can even be uncomfortable to talk about. Here, we will look at these worries and what you can do about them.
If you are planning on a cesarean birth (by choice or for medical reasons), or recently gave birth this way, you might be feeling guilty for the following reasons:
- You have not experienced a real birth.
- You have not experienced the pain associated with childbirth and therefore had it easier than everyone else who did it naturally".
- You haven't experienced the initial bonding when the baby is first born.
- You have regrets about not having tried harder.
These feelings are real. Especially after you've had a baby, you may even feel bad that you're feeling bad because both you and your child are healthy. It's completely normal.
Missing out on the pain
For those who claim that cesarean births are not real, or that you don't get to experience the entire birthing process. It's important to remember that you did carry that child for nine months. You went through the same thing that millions of women have gone through already.
You don't have to prove yourself to anyone. Not even you. You have already created a miracle and will be upbringing a child, which is a lot more important than how the child was born.
Some societies get really caught up in how you plan on giving birth. However, in France for example, women are hardly ever asked that question by their friends. In fact, for vaginal births, there is no distinction between using an epidural or not, because everyone tends to use one. It's not important. Their reasoning: why would you want to subject yourself to unnecessary pain?
Missing out on the bonding
Lots of guilt may stem from the idea that you didn't get the opportunity to hold your baby right away or start to initiate breastfeeding. Your partner may not have even been allowed in the surgery room. All of these things can lead to a lot of emotion and worry both before and for weeks after the birth.
When the delivery is behind you, there is nothing you can do about it. Instead, focus on all the opportunities that you have to bond with your little one afterward. Initial skin-to-skin contact receives a lot of hype, but it doesn't have to be directly after the birth. Getting to know your baby doesn't come down to one moment. You can easily make up the lost time.
When it comes to breastfeeding, you won't fail because you didn't begin right away. Plenty of mothers who have had cesarean births breastfeed. Breastfeeding can be very difficult for many, so don't chalk it up to your birthing experience if it takes a while for the both of you to get a hang of it.
Wishing you had tried harder
If you are in the situation where you had not planned a cesarean, but a vaginal birth then you may have been in labor for a long time before your doctor recommended the surgery. Now, you feel guilty about not having pushed for a little while longer.
When labor doesn't go as planned it can be stressful. Your doctor's recommendation is made in your best interest, especially if you have consistently pushed for a natural birth and your doctor knows this. A cesarean, in this case, is for the sake of the baby, and there's nothing to feel guilty about protecting your child. It's something you've been doing since the time you learned you were pregnant.
You are strong
Choosing or going through a cesarean for whatever reason is actually safer for the baby. It lessens the chance of complications. It also puts you, the mother, at a higher risk. Any surgery has a risk factor. When you choose or consent to give birth via cesarean, you are choosing to put yourself at some risk for your child to be born. That shows a lot of love and the willingness to do whatâ€™s best for the baby, something you will continue doing for a long time.
It allows for convenience
Cesarean can actually be a positive thing. In addition to taking away complications that may occur in vaginal deliveries, that is an added convenience factor. Scheduling a cesarean can be very exciting because you will know when you will meet you, new baby! You can be completely prepared.
No matter what your plan is, talk to your doctor in detail about what to expect in the delivery room if things go according to plan and if they don't. That way, you will be less thrown if things change suddenly.
Talk with your friends for insight on their experiences, your OB doctor after your birth, and mothers in online chats who have similar stories if you need external support for getting over your guilt. You're not alone.