Childbirth Is An Act Of Love Between Two Beings
There is no pain more intense than that of childbirth. No love as profound as that felt by a mother when she sees the child she has being carrying for the first time after 9 months.
How dare we break this magical moment of great transcendence? It’s all a sacrilege, we know, but still, it’s done.
We are not only talking about the need to have a respectful delivery. But also about many other factors that tend to reduce the vividness of the start of that bond that experts still refer to as essential. We are also referring to those family members who on certain occasions pick up the newborn baby before the mother does.
There are details that can interfere with this moment of love. Most of them are related to medical protocols. Aseptic environments and standardized rituals in which the umbilical cord is cut too quickly and the baby is bathed as soon as possible.
There are interesting approaches that encourage us to see this process in a new light. We should have medical assistance at all times, there is no doubt about that.
However, we need new sensitivity, a new perspective where the family members of the women should also get involved in the birth process.
Coming up, we will explain this concept
Birth is an act of love, not an instrumental protocol
We would like to speak to you about a very special person, maybe you already know him. Michel Odent is a French obstetrician who is a world reference in this field.
- Thanks to him we have been exposed to interesting ideas about reformulating the process of childbirth. Making it more sensitive and affectionate. Doctor Odent defends the idea that giving birth is an act of love between two beings, and that it should not be violated.
- According to him, we have long crossed the limits of what should be allowed. Nowadays we have supposedly “humanized” births that in reality leave the human element aside to make the process “instrumentalized.”
- They use synthetic oxytocin, clamps, edemas and above all an abuse of cesarean sections.
All of these methods try to guarantee the safety of the mother and child. This is without a doubt something positive. We object to other things: we end up having women who have to give birth under stress, women who are afraid and uncomfortable.
The baby on its part feels terrified by all the different hands that manipulate him, turn him around and wash him without him even knowing where his mother is.
No one should violate this moment.
During childbirth we should apply the paradigm of protection
Doctor Odent, now 83 years old, continues defending the need to put into practice “the paradigm of protection.” This concept is based on these points:
- The physical and emotional well-being of the mother and child should be taken care of.
- The mother should feel sheltered, respected and comfortable. This implies allowing them to choose how to give birth. The colt is not always the preferred option for many women, there are a few who feel more secure giving birth standing.
- Shaving, induced labor with oxytocin and the application of epidurals are things that a woman should be able to choose after being advised by her doctor.
- The baby does not need to be washed immediately. In fact, the white layer that covers them is a form of natural protection for their skin. They can maintain skin to skin contact with their mother for a few minutes before being washed.
- The umbilical cord should be cut only when it stops beating. Until then, and according to Michel Odent, it proves to be a useful vaccine against diseases such as “neonatal tetanus.”
- Dr. Odent is the author of the first written document on the need to start breastfeeding during the first hour after delivery.
Communication with the mother during childbirth.
This is interesting information. Within the paradigm that Dr. Odent defends, there is no need to shout at the mother nor repeat phrases such as “push” repeatedly.
- During childbirth, the woman’s neocortex (our rational brain) lowers its activity while the instinctive and purely emotional part of the brain increases activity. In this environment, verbal orders will only increase the woman’s stress.
- It is worth keeping this in mind. It is necessary to remember what we said at the start. Childbirth should be undertaken like a delicate act of love.
Family should not bother the new parents
Once the mother gives birth, calm and silence are needed. Parents need time to get to know their newborn.
Family members will have a lifetime to get to know them. The first moments after birth should belong solely to the new parents.
Cheers to the new family!
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Lothian, J. A. (2000). Questions From Our Readers: Why Natural Childbirth? https://connect.springerpub.com/content/sgrjpe/9/4/44.abstract
- Lothian, J. A. (2009). Safe, healthy birth: What every pregnant woman needs to know. The Journal of Perinatal Education, 18(3), 48-54. https://connect.springerpub.com/content/sgrjpe/18/3/48.abstract
- Gizzo, S., Di Gangi, S., Noventa, M., Bacile, V., Zambon, A., & Nardelli, G. B. (2014). Women’s choice of positions during labour: return to the past or a modern way to give birth? A cohort study in Italy. BioMed research international, 2014. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2014/638093/
- National Collaborating Centre for Women’s and Children’s Health (UK. (2015). Preterm labour and birth. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26632624/