I like the idea of various groups that are pushing for more natural childbirth options - more midwives, fewer hospitals, fewer c-sections.
I see something interesting happening though - while they stress that women should prepare for their births, prepare to go into battle if they have to deliver at a hospital, birth plan in hand.....they don't stress having a backup plan. And they're mostly militant that any other option besides what they're presenting is a bad idea.
Must be nice to have the education to know what the options are. And to have health care resources (like being in a state where midwives aren't outlawed). And to be healthy enough, and have a baby healthy enough, to remain relatively low risk (based on Acorn's birth, Leaf and I automatically risked out of any midwife practice - hospital or homebirth - in the area, and obviously that was a valid reason to be required to be followed by an OB). And it must be nice to have support people who support those choices. In some places it's also a matter of money - around here, a homebirth is about $3000, though some have sliding scales. If you're low income and on medicaid, at least here, they won't touch the midwife's bill, but they'll pay most of a hospital birth, so the system is flawed to begin with.
Now, it's probably just my perspective, having twice been through a birth that wasn't what I had in mind, but if knowledge is power, then these groups are nearly as bad as OBs who start scheduling c-sections at 35 weeks. Nearly 1 in 8 babies is born early. Complications happen. And when you've planned the perfect birth and get something else through no fault of your own or the birthing staff you're working with, you're setting up a dramatic emotional upheaval - even moreso if you have no idea what the risks really are when interventions start.
I know women who have left midwives and doctors over something as simple as "we want you to have a backup plan, based on your previous deliveries." I know people who've had complications crop up in a third or fourth pregnancy after no issues in their previous ones who were completely lost when they ended up in the hospital, whose birth experience wasn't all that bad, but for whom the emotional strain of things gone wrong left them crushed, alone, and unable to bond with their child.
Does a c-section interfere with bonding? Well, you wouldn't know it to see Acorn, though I can see how it can make it harder. But what about telling women how to cope with that if it happens? Nipple confusion and breastfeeding issues? Most NICU babies here get both bottle and breast if mom wants, with apparently little or no confusion, and more effort to help women to breastfeed post c-section or while on meds like magnesium would go a long way to eliminating the problems caused by the less than optimal birth. And so on and so forth - I have yet to find *any* group that talks about these things, or provides information to moms who do have anything other than a natural birth.
Yes, we all need choices. Yes, fewer interventions are better. But it seems to me that preaching that no interventions is the only way to go hurts women and babies.