So it seems to me that every day is international or national something day and so I generally don’t pay a huge amount of attention, but the other day I saw that this month is International Cesarean Awareness month and as I have had 3 C Sections I felt like I wanted to throw my two pennies worth in.
Personally, I would never have chosen to have major abdominal surgery and I would not want to recommend this as a ‘choice’ to anyone, but this is an operation that saves lives. It saves the lives of women and babies. Without this operation my eldest son would not be here and possibly neither would I. I wanted to have the whole natural, relaxed birth, but that was not to be. So whilst I would not have chosen a C section I stand behind women having a choice and making the best decision for them. It was certainly the right decision for my children and I, but not necessarily for the appearance of my stomach! Over the years I have heard lots of nonsense about cesarean sections and I wanted to dispel the rubbish so here are my myth busters:
9 Myths about C Sections
- Women who have c sections are too posh to push – How stupid is that? I can’t tell you how many times people have joked about that with me. It is annoying. I mean seriously class has nothing to do with whether you need a cesearean or not.
- It is the easy way out – I have been in labour for 48 hours and then had a section. Both things hurt! I can assure you that there is nothing easy about huge abdominal surgery and it takes some recovery. Listen, I don’t want to scare anyone who is facing a C section with this post so please know you will recover. You will be able to walk around within 24 hours, but it does hurt. You need to give yourself time to recover which is tough when you have a newborn. I advise making sure you have some help for a couple of weeks.
- You avoid labour and can schedule your birth for when it suits you – erm no! If there is a chance that you will need a c section and this is known in advance then you will meet with your consultant and decide on the most appropriate time to deliver. This is based on medical information and not on when you can fit it in. Also I did not avoid labour, at least not the first time round.
- If you have a C section you haven’t really earnt your mum stripes. I have even heard that some people don’t consider a C section as birth. What the actual??? Birth is birth. When I look at my 4 children they definitely exist and so were born. It doesn’t matter how!
- Cesareans are stressful – I am not going to lie my emergency section was stressful, but they don’t call stuff an emergency for nothing. My subsequent planned sections were very relaxed and when I had the twins all the the medical team were excited so there was a lovely atmosphere
- If you have a cesarean section you won’t be able to have skin to skin contact – untrue. All being well with you and baby they will bring the little one to you straight away so your partner can help make that skin to skin. If you can’t do it then it is certainly possible once you are in recovery. I breastfed all of my four then.
- Having a C section is always the mother’s choice – there isn’t always a choice. Actually I did have a choice the first time round and the choice was risk your baby’s life or have a cesarean. That just isn’t a choice is it?
- If you have a C section it will be harder to bond with your baby – what a load of cods wallop! Bonding is not triggered by the birth canal. I was able to hold all of my babies as soon as they had been weighed. My husband held each one of them first and brought them over to me which actually I thought was lovely as he got to bond straight away too.
- If you have a cesarean you won’t be able to breastfeed – not true! I breastfed all four of my littles. The only thing I would say is that with my first child I lost a lot of blood and that did slow down my milk production and so I had to do a top up feed for a couple of weeks until that sorted itself out.
I fully believe that the best way for a baby to be born is the safest way and then one that results in a happy, healthy baby. That is all that matters so whether it is out through the sun roof or not birth is birth and during the month of international Cesarean section I would love for us all to think about being more supportive of one another no matter what happens when our baby is born.