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Why Do People Lose Their Manners When You Tell Them You’re Planning a Home Birth?

homebirth

Overall, the response to our decision to have a home birth has been positive.

But I have also noticed a strange phenomenon surrounding the home birth experience. Specifically, the response of many people, family, doctors, nurses, friends and strangers alike, when you tell them you’re hoping to give birth at home.

The response isn’t positive. In fact, it isn’t just not positive, it’s a full-on attack on your decision and even your priorities as a parent. Listen: I don’t need you to do jumping jacks or anything, but there is a base line of respecting the decisions of others that I expect people to abide by.

What I’m saying is the horror story of how your friend’s cousin’s brother’s wife’s home birth went horribly wrong isn’t necessary. Neither are all the passive-aggressive links to blogs detailing home births gone bad.

It’s just weird. Do you honestly think I decided on a home birth as a lark? That I thought, What the hell? Let’s do this for kicks! I obviously feel really solid about my choice, but just like any expectant parent, I worry that everything will turn out okay. So, just as I wouldn’t pull you aside to tell you that I’m really concerned about your decision to get an induction or send you a link to a study linking Pitocin to Autism or any number of other dangerous side-effects, I expect respect for my decisions as well.

Nobody, whether planning a hospital or home birth, needs to hear labor and delivery horror stories. If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. And no, sending random Internet links about home birth isn’t considered nice. Airplanes are safer than cars but they still crash sometimes. That doesn’t mean that it’s acceptable for me to tell you plane crash stories or send you links detailing fiery crashes as you’re about to board a flight for your honeymoon.

Maybe you mean well, but it comes off as just plain mean.

Image source: themomcrowd.com

Read more from Monica on Babble:

MORE ON BABBLE
What a home birth REALLY looks like
25 powerful photos of women giving birth
29 things you should NEVER say to a pregnant woman
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10 “unsafe” things I did while pregnant… and still had a healthy baby

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