Why I Chose To Have An Elective C-Section

As a Canadian, I’ve always felt out of place in this country. In my heart, I feel like a New Yorker – or as if I should be living in Los Angeles – and often bemoan the fact I don’t have an American passport. I just feel like Americans “get” me better. I like their work ethic, their pride in their country and the fact they do seem to enjoy other people’s successes.

There is now further proof that I am more of an American gal, thanks to a recent statistic from the International Cesarean Awareness network, which says that “around a third of U.S. pregnancies end with the operation.” Even in Britain, a quarter of babies come into the world via C-section. Apparently, C-sections are the “most frequently performed major surgery in the United States.”

Data published in the British journal BMC Public Health also shows some interesting statistics. In the early 80s, elective C-sections were mostly performed on women from lower socioeconomic classes. By the early 2000s, they found that upper-class women were the ones most likely to have scheduled C-sections.

Almost eight years ago, I had an elective C-section in Canada and wrote about it in my book Knocked Up and in a national newspaper in Canada that I wrote for at the time. To say it caused controversy is an understatement. To say that Canadians remember that I had a C-section to this day is a reality, as if I was the only person to ever even think about having one.

In Canada, both doctors and mothers frown upon elective C-sections. The smart mothers, in this country, do not talk about getting elective C-sections. That is, if they can find a doctor who will perform one. The first obstetrician I visited, and whom I asked for an elective C-section, told me to go to “Brazil.” I found another obstetrician, in a different province, who was understanding to my pleas and agreed to give me my elective C-section.

To say that I’m tired of arguing about my choice is also an understatement. If I could roll my eyes on paper, I would. But while people were only too willing to bash me publically about my decision, and still do, there was a whole other breed of women who privately sent me e-mails pleading for my doctor’s name (no fewer than 50 emails arrived in my in-box). To this day, I still receive the occasional e-mail asking about my experience from women who want a C-section and can I please, please, please suggest a doctor who will perform one.

These women, like me, don’t want a C-section because they are “too posh to push,” which is a phrase I think is totally ridiculous, totally overused and, quite frankly, totally wrong and misleading.

When you have a catheter next to your bed that’s filled with your own urine, and a doctor cutting layers of muscle, it’s anything but too posh too push. It’s really quite disgusting.

Do you want to know why I chose to have an elective C-section? I can feed you lines, as I have in the past, like, “I’m not good with surprises” and “I wanted my mother, who lived in a different city, to be there for the birth,” both of which are true.

But, what’s the truest of all, is that I was scared shitless to go through labor. I was so terrified that the very thought of labor pains and not knowing how long I’d be in pain for, or when it would start, stressed me out to the point I was having panic attacks and would sob uncontrollably. Once the doctor agreed to an elective C-section, the panic attacks went away. I felt calmer. Who could argue that a less stressed out mother isn’t better for the baby growing inside?

In this day and age, where it’s finally okay to admit that you suffer from mental illnesses like depression or bipolar (like Catherine Zeta Jones), why can’t the medical community comprehend that there are just some women who can’t deal with the thought of labor and consider it a real medical problem? Trust me when I say that just because you tell me that, “millions of women do it every day!” it does not make me feel any better.

In Canada, where we are fortunate to have universal health care, it often comes down to a money issue. I can see this point. I had an anesthesiologist at my side the entire time, along with two nurses and a doctor. I was allowed to stay in the hospital for almost three days. Yes, other Canadians had to pay with their tax dollars – but so did I. Would I have paid for this if that were allowed in Canada? Absolutely. And it’s not because I am flush with money. It’s because, as I said, I was terrified.

Women who think I’m doing a disservice to my baby by having a C-section can – if I can be so blunt?– bite me. I do not remember the day I was born and neither do they and neither does my daughter. My daughter is thriving. She is smart as a whip, got into the National Ballet School and one of the best private schools in Canada.

I do not judge mothers who choose to have babies at home with no medical assistance. I do not judge mothers who insist you Purel your hands every time you walk in the door. I just smile and move on. I had an elective C-section. Smile and move on. Also, I’m not a martyr. I do not believe that just because you went through 48 hours of labor that you are a better mother than I am. You are not.

I do not regret having an elective C-section. When I say I really do believe I had a mental medical problem when it came to giving birth “naturally,” I believe I did. I believe other women do as well. I believe doctors should be more understanding.

Of course there will always be women out there who choose to have elective C-sections because they think it’s easier. It’s not, as they will find out. Unlike most of my friends who could work out within a week after giving birth, I could barely walk for a month. Could I hold my baby, like any other new mother, though? Absolutely.

Instead of coming down hard on mother’s who choose or want an elective C-section, people should not be asking, “Are you too posh too push?” They should be asking us about our mental state and trust us that we know ourselves better than anyone.

Also, I didn’t breastfeed. But that’s another story….


(Photo: iStockphoto)

You can reach this post's author, Rebecca Eckler, on twitter.
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    • elaine

      Rebecca, I completely agree with you! I witnessed my sister’s labour (big mistake) and have been terrified about delivery ever since. I’m not a wimp, I’m not afraid of pain, but the experience was traumatic for me and if one day I am fortunate enough to be pregnant I know the fear of delivery would cause me great stress and could potentially be harmful. People really do need to mind their own business.

    • Tiffany

      I just love this blog on C-Sections. I had a emergency C-Section with my first daughter in 2005 and I was very pleased with the way the surgery went, my recovery wasn’t long nor was hurt, but I was only 18 yrs old. Now Im 24 yrs old and Im seven months pregnant and Im having a PLANNED C-Section. I can say Im afraid of labor pains and pushing lls. But like you said as long as the baby gets here safely, Im good with choices to do a C-Section. I can’t wait to hear my babygirl voice and her lifely lungs scream. Wish me luck :)

    • Kristen

      Having had two emergency c-sections and one planned repeat, I can tell you in the US, or at least in parts of it, an elective c-section is frowned upon big time. It’s seen as a woman “not trusting herself” or as you said “doing their child a disservice.” In fact, for many, the practice of having a doula present is to avoid having a medically necessary c-sections. There is a very large contingent of the US population who insist that ALL c-sections are unnecessary. Including my two of transverse breech babies who cannot be born vaginally. Yeah, my baby and I were supposed to die although medical science has made that not so.

    • Pauline McDonagh Hull

      This is a great post, thank you.

      May I just add that there are also women who choose to plan a cesarean birth because they’ve made an informed decision – and not just out of fear.

      There are risks and benefits with every birth plan, and what more and more studies are showing now is that a planned cesarean birth plan is not actually more risky – or costly – than a planned vaginal birth (given that many of the latter end up as emergency cesareans and instrumental deliveries – not to mention court cases).

      Like you say, this ‘too posh to push’ tag is completely overused, and misses the point about informed decision making. Also, women are not so much posh as they are rich enough to pay privately when the state health system says ‘no’ to their maternal request.

      I’ve always described my decision to plan cesarean births for our two children as having genuinely believed it to be the safest option for our babies. As for fear, I’ve also said that had I been pregnant a century earlier – or even just 50 years earlier – I most probably would have feared labor, but for the whole of my adult life, I’ve known that cesarean surgery was available, and I had no doubt in my mind that this was what I would have (barring my baby being born in less than an hour of course, which is how long I had to hotfoot it to my OBGYN in the event of premature labor).

      Tokophobia is a genuine fear, and one that should be recognized, respected and supported. Just please (UK and Canada), don’t waste tax-payers’ money forcing women like me to go through antenatal counseling and therapy when our mental state has nothing to do with our cesarean birth plan decision – rather, it is our educated and informed preference.

      Editor, electivecesarean.com
      Blog, cesareandebate.blogspot.com

    • Rose

      Thank you for this post Rebecca, I found it very powerful. However, I would argue that your C-section was not “elective” at all. You present a powerful case that your extreme anxiety, manifested in physical symptoms (panic attacks), constitute a legitimate medical indication for a C-section. “Elective” conveys a procedure one undergoes for non-medically necessary reasons. Anxiety of the magnitude you are describing is absolutely a medical condition, making your C-section a medical necessity for your own health, and that of your child.

    • Annie @ PhD in Parenting.com

      I think it is possible to distinguish between speaking about the risks of elective c-sections and judging women who do opt for an elective c-section. Same goes for breastfeeding versus formula feeding. There are risks to going to c-sections just as there are risks to formula. That doesn’t mean that they are never the right option for any mother.

      I think that in some cases those who promote natural birth and breastfeeding do go too far and end up criticizing mothers who could not or chose not to go that route. However, in other cases, moms who chose to have an elective c-section or who chose to formula feed also perceive judgment in any discussion of the risks of that practice.

      I think if everyone (both those judging and being judged) took it a little less personally, maybe the discussions about these things could be more productive instead of turning into “mommy wars”.

      • judith.butlertron

        It’s a nice idea, but when someone’s expressed opinion comes from a cultural narrative of oppression and denying women’s reproductive choices, it is difficult, and not even particularly desirable, to speak nicely.

        Elective c-section is a huge deal, and people (and doctors) persist in portraying it as maternal laziness, fear, and ignorance. If you haven’t read it yet, I recommend http://birthtraumacanada.org/ which should shed a little bit of light on why some of us are so strident on what seems, on the surface, to be simply an issue of personal choice.

        This is NOT an issue of personal choice, because that choice is still blocked, discouraged, vilified, and misunderstood by people who have the privilege of not knowing how bad birth trauma can be, physically and emotionally. This is not a “the answer is do what feels right”, because some of us can’t. This is not an issue where nobody is wrong, because women who elect aren’t telling women who have vaginal births that they MUST have c-sections and that they must hate their babies and love themselves for doing it that way.

        This is not an even debate, at all.

      • ARW

        Here here, Annie. Here here. Well said.

      • Annie @ PhDinParenting.com


        I’m not saying that this is simply an issue of personal choice. I do understand many of the reasons why women opt for elective c-sections. I support a woman’s right to choose.

        I’m not saying that “nobody is wrong”, but I don’t think that any and all discussion of the risks is necessarily “wrong”. Making a judgment about the woman, however, is.

    • Clare

      I agree that we should not judge any mother’s choice for the birth of their child but I can’t agree with the doctor bashing. I believe OBs are right to expect a woman to give birth vaginally and that this is the route that they should promote first and foremost. I respect that for some women, a natural labour is both mentally and physically impossible & the c-section is an amazing advance in obstectric care which is saving maternal lives every day. However, for the vast majority of women in the developed world, giving birth is a completely safe and natural process and should be encouraged.

      BTW, I had a natural birth ie, vaginal with no pain intervention and I ended up with a 4th degree tear and couldn’t walk for a month either!

    • Nurse in Maternity

      I think that women who opt for an elective Cesarean birth need to have a consult with a counsellor prior to signing their consents for a surgical birth, to truly investigate their reason. I have seen a huge wide array of reasons from not wanting to damage their pelvic floor to anxiety disorders to ‘my husband goes away on business a lot’. Whatever the outcome, the decision for major surgery and operative birth should be discussed in a safe environment.

      I think it is fantastic that women have choices around how they want to birth their babies. At the same time, I also think it is sad that some women choose to elect for major abdominal surgery because of fear based decision making.

      • judith.butlertron

        Holy Hannah, WHAT?

        And what is the outcome going to be for that, if the doctor decides the patient’s reasons aren’t good enough? Have you actually considered what forced counselling and placing barriers between women and their birthing choices actually MEANS for women? Who are you to judge whether or not a woman’s reasons are “good enough”? They’re hers. That’s good enough.

        With my second I had an elective c-section, which was performed somewhat earlier than scheduled when I went into labour at 38 weeks. I went into surgery feeling euphoric and excited. When I was able to see my son it was through tears of joy instead of untreated, un-anesthetised agony. I was back on my feet in 2 days, had my staples out in 10, and was able to begin exercise within 3 weeks. My son is now 2 years old, and there is only one place on the incision that is still numb.

        I wish someone had told me that I *could* have had an elective c-section with my first, but apparently my doctors and nurses all knew what was “good” for me despite the fact that my daughter’s head was nearly as big around as she was long AND they encouraged me to push as hard as I could. I don’t know whether they underestimated my ability to give it some wellie or what, but I went from fully dilated to having an entire human being crammed out of my body in something around 20 minutes, and I ended up with chronic dysuria, a rectocele, fibrous scarring of my labia minora, and chronic pevlic floor weakness and pain. I had been doing kegels every day for 10 years before giving birth, and it was something like 6 months before I could even hold one – ONE – for longer than 5 seconds before losing muscle control.

        I suffered from PTSD, and had pain during sex for YEARS, AND my ob/gyn told me my injuries were normal and nothing to fuss about, and I didn’t have the confidence or knowledge to seek a second opinion.

        This is what was considered “good” for me by the kind of people you want running a counselling session trying to railroad women into choosing a “non surgical” option (that is to say, choosing to ignore or glorify maternal morbidity in the form of vaginal trauma, avulsion of tissue and ligament, and then surgical fixation without the benefit of anaesthetic, in addiction to the wrenching, bruising, and potential injury to the babies – all of the wonderful, natural injuries that childbirth has to offer those of us who are slightly less stretchy than our peers) over an atraumatic and painless controlled incision, birth, and reapproximation.

        I could have been saved years of trauma if my docs had decided to go with a c-section the first time. They didn’t, and I still can’t pee without having to hold my breath against the pain some 8 years later.

        Excuse me while I don’t applaud the idea that women need to be bullied into doing it your way with mandatory “counselling” before they’re ALLOWED to choose how they want to give birth.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dana.schreiner.7 Dana Schreiner

        Maybe I misinterpreted Nurse in Maternity, but she didn’t say that women should be denied the right to have a c section based on their consultation, merely that it was a suggestion. A good one, I think. It’s meant to help women not bully them; I can see where the idea could go sour, but I think the intentions here are meant to be helpful and useful. If women are having anxiety over vaginal births (which I think is a legitimate reason and problem they may be facing), it’s important, like any type of anxiety/disorder/psychological issue to understand where it stems from and how to BEST deal with it. She can still opt for a c section if that what patient and dr think is best. Even if it is an irrational fear. It could be something that the woman could get over and choose a vaginal birth if she likes. Some women (not all and probably not even a majority) fear it because it’s unknown. I think women should have choices, assuming they aren’t putting themselves or baby at an extreme risk. I also have trouble understanding, and even this article mentions it, is why surgery is thought to be less painful, the article points out how long and painful the recovery process is compared to vaginal. If the pain of birth is causing the fear, then surgery doesn’t seem like an accurate alternative, even with anethesia (which can be used in a vaginal delivery as well).

    • Jennifer

      In Ontario the C-section rate is around 28 percent :)

    • Rebecca Eckler

      I did not mean to bash doctors. I am only asking that they at least CONSIDER that some of us women know ourselves better than they do and we definitely know our mental states better than they do. A good doctor will take the time to actually listen and consider what you are telling them.

    • Jamie Lingstrom

      Women who choose to have elective c-sections because they are afraid of childbirth need to be well supported and educated. Major surgery is nothing easy and should not even be in the same class as a vaginal birth. There are many more serious risks with surgery than a battered vulva or residual painful sex. How about loss of your bladder or a hemorrhage. People need to open their eyes. C-sections should be used as an emergency service only.

      Also, in Canada women who opt for a personal elective c-section should have to foot the bill and pay the difference. Longer hospital stays, more specialty physicians involved. It is way more expensive to book your elective section than to have a vaginal birth.

      • Ericacrochets

        One should keep in mind that elective/planned c-sections have a low complication rate and tend to cost much less than an emergency c-section following a planned vaginal birth.

        In addition, there are many chronic complications of vaginal birth, including incontinence and pelvic floor problems, and as you mentioned, painful sex, that can require surgery and cost taxpayers money many years after the vaginal birth. I’m curious if you have any idea what the rate of losing one’s bladder to a planned c-section is? Hemorrhage is also a risk of vaginal birth.

        Even in low risk mothers, elective c-section is actually safer for the baby than attempting a vaginal birth, and very safe for the mother, as long as she plans a small family.

    • Cin

      I recently wote an article about my four C-sections — two planned and all medically necessary — and my reasons why I would not recommend a section to anyone who didn’t need one for medical reasons.

      The long and short of it is major surgery and recovering from it sucks. A section is no piece of cake and no easy way out — and it can affect you in various ways for the rest of your life.


      I think talking about these things is important, so I’m glad you shared your point on this, Rebecca. That said, I do disagree with you on the various reasons a section should be done. Quite frankly, I think it should be a surgery of last resort, and that comes directly out of my experience with it.

      I also think Annie is correct– just because I disagree with you on this does not mean I need to make judgments about you as a person and a mother.

      I hope Rowan is enjoying her dance instruction.

      • sarahliz

        An elective C-section is much much safer than sending yourself into early labor during a panic attack because you have an anxiety disorder and worrying about the uncertainty of the birth is making your anxiety worse. You can end up with lower birth weights, low infant blood pressure, high maternal blood pressure, and a premature infant with innumerable complications that will affect them for the rest of their lives, or God forbid, a miscarriage — as opposed to making the prudent choice as someone who knows their anxiety and body to have a c-section and not put you or your baby at risk.

    • Melinda

      It’s interesting reading this article, I have recently had a baby and I was scared to death of having a C section. The fear of a major operation scared me more than the idea of a vaginal birth. I don’t know why, but felt like women have been giving birth forever and our bodies should be designed to give birth rather than have a major operation. Also the idea of pushing was more appealing to me as I am in control of my body.

    • Rose

      I am fascinated that people think that elective surgery is better than natural childbirth. There is something you are forgetting. Yes, the c-section rate is high, and yes, vaginal birth *could* be dangerous. But, it’s not the vaginal birth that’s the problem. It’s the ridiculous amount of unnecessary interventions forced on women, because natural birth is so “dangerous.” A more accurate way of assessing how dangerous sections are would be to compare them to birth center births. These births are not attended by surgeons. These births are designed to be “normal.” Do not try to tell me surgery is safer than the way it was designed. That is ridiculous. When women are this afraid of birth (and to the author, I would agree yours isn’t really elective, but sounds medically necessary), we have to ask why. When you go to a hospital, are tied to the bed with monitoring, hooked to an iv, and have your labor artificially induced, YEAH, I might see a planned c-section being better! However, if you let your body do what it is designed to do, that outcome will be safer, on the whole, than surgery.

      • Leigha

        I’m curious why you would have to question someone being afraid of giving birth. I’ve seen it, both on TV and in real life (well, I was in the room up until she started actually pushing, but the pain begins way before that), and labor is an EXCRUCIATINGLY painful process. I can barely stand stubbing my toe, there is no way the idea of giving birth could do less than terrify me. Then add in the high probability of incontinence and reduced enjoyment of sex, among other potential side effects of variable probability, and is it really any wonder someone might be scared?

        A C-section is major surgery, there is no question about that, and of course it is preferable to avoid it if possible. And yes, the way hospitals tend to handle the birthing process is largely the problem. The angle at which a woman lies greatly increases both the amount of pain and the likelihood of tearing, but just try telling them that.

      • Ben

        Excuse me, I’m not a women or a doctor, I’m a biologist and women (nor men) were “designed” to do anything. We are ALL riddled with mutations, some good, some neutral, some bad. Some women via genetic luck will be able to have children with ease, other will need IVF, c-sections, and formula (because their breast don’t works as “designed”). “Naturally” such people were to die off, back before modern medicine birth was the number one killer of women (and their infants). Anyways last time I looked the Nazi did not win the war and as such people should be free to reproduce how ever they want, despite their varying ability to do so.

    • Nina

      So proud of you for writing this! As an American, they also frown on elective c-sections. I had one.
      Women should have a choice. If left up to men having the child, it would be a much higher rate!

    • Sandra

      C-Sections as we all know, have helped at risk women and their children survive the trauma of childbirth.

      I’d like to comment for anyone who is reading this blog and has not experienced “natural” childbirth that it’s not always as horrifying as some of the experiences shared on this blog.

      I had a high risk pregnancy due to late maternal age and was able to vaginally birth a healthy baby girl. I had an epidural and felt no pain below the waist. I had no stitches and a small tear that healed within a week. I feel as if I cheated by not feeling any real pain.

      Yes, my pelvic wall muscles are not what they used to be. However, an added bonus is that intercourse has been much more pleasurable since giving birth. I have no explanation for this and just assume it’s because my body has been “rearranged” since childbirth.

      I just wanted to share my experience so that anyone who hasn’t given birth is not completely frightened by natural childbirth.

      I feel blessed to be Canadian and to be in control of my own birthing plan. We all should have the right to choose how we give birth. I do agree that anyone who chooses an elective C-Section that is not medically or mentally necessary should pay additional costs over the provincial rate of a natural delivery.

      • Aurora

        I am totally with you. Thanks for posting that perspective! There is so much fear surrounding birth, and I think that’s part of what makes it so tough on women.

        My 35 hour labor, without pain medication, was a long and physically strenuous period but not at all traumatic. I had more discomfort than actual pain. It was an amazing bonding time with my husband, and I came out of my birth feeling strong and empowered. I’m looking forward to another unmedicated vaginal birth when the time comes, as mine was such a positive experience (of course, the best part is the perfect baby!).

    • holly

      Hi Guys i have been reading all your comments and i am in a predicament , I have given birth naturally to 2 boys (3+5) and have recently found out i am expecting our final addition, I had a horrendous labour last time and swore that i was never going to do it again , i had post natel depression that i couldn’t own up to anyone about and i think the birth was a major part of that , I never want to feel that way again and want a c section this time round , also my pelvic floor is completely shot , i cant even get a cough without needing lady towels , how do i make the doctor understand how important this is to me , I cannot do a natural birth again , mentally or physically !

    • Tina Rahkonen

      While I completely agree that women should be able to choose how to birth their babies and when and where, I find it frightening that the medical community has encouraged women to consider major abdominal surgery as an elective birthing option and are not fully informing mothers about the dangers and risks associated with all medical interventions during labor and birth to themselves and their babies. Ethically, I just find it wrong. You cannot walk into a hospital and say, “I am tired of my right arm. Cut it off. I understand the risks involved. I signed the papers.” Anyone who considers a c-section as a safe alternative to vaginal birth when not a medical necessity is just plain mis-informed. And as far as being ‘terrified of birth’ as a reason for elective surgery, I’m assuming as a grown women you were well aware of how your child would eventually come out of our body. Just as women who choose early induction knew full well that human gestation is for 9 months. Mental health issues should definitely be considered BEFORE conception. And women with such issues should receive all of the care they need to be able to carry and birth their babies safely.

      • Leigha

        Did you just imply that if a woman is terrified of giving birth, she shouldn’t have kids unless she gets counseling to make her do it anyway?

        There is no connection between fear of giving birth and the desire and ability to be a good parent, and to insinuate otherwise is terribly unfair and judgmental. I’m still a few years off from having kids myself, but I have always known, for as long as I can remember, that I wanted kids. At some point the full reality of the tremendous amounts of pain and the probable after-effects hit me, and the idea of it terrifies me now. I still want kids, and I hope to be able to handle giving birth naturally, but just like the author, if I can’t handle that, there is still no reason why I shouldn’t be allowed to have kids. Why should two people who have known their whole lives that they wanted a family more than anything not be allowed to because a woman is afraid of large amounts of pain? That’s just one day. The real parenting begins after that.

      • Mrs. W

        Denying a woman an informed choice that has comparable risks is mysogynistic and misguided.

      • Lara

        If you can walk into a hospital and ask for liposuction or a breast implant or a tubal ligation or a vasectomy (all of which are surgical procedures), then why not a c section?! It is NOTHING like cutting off your arm- the comparison makes no sense. Cosmetic surgery is statistically often riskier than c sections and yet it is available on demand for well informed people.
        If you have an issue with the ethics of elective surgery, then direct your judgement to ALL elective surgical procedures like cosmetic surgery, and not just c sections.
        I think you need to read more recent research papers by the way. I suggest an excellent book called Choosing Cesarean- it dispels myths about c sections that have been spread in society by evangelical natural birth advocates. For example, some studies have found that maternal death rate and stillbirth rates are actually lower in planned c sections as compared to vaginal births. Contrary to what you have said, c sections are a safe surgery. Whether they are safer or not than a vaginal birth depends on individual priority and perception of risk, but they are certainly safe enough to be performed on demand.
        Lastly, I find your implication horrifying. You are basically implying that women who suffer from tokophobia due to past abuse etc. should not have the right to become mothers and be sent off to the loony bin for their “irrational fears”. That’s just awful.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dana.schreiner.7 Dana Schreiner

        well said Tina:)

    • Carol

      My opinion is that noone is who to say anything about csections. Unless you have gone through it then noone can say anything. If it was really that severe why would they have that as an option. Everyones body is different and goes throuqh pain differently.

    • Sinead Bright

      I’ve had a vaginal birth and have decided that I would like a c section this time round. I have decided not to tell family (as I live overseas) mainly not to worry them on the day but also because I can’t be bothered to face a barrage of questions about ‘my decision’
      Why is it that sone women feel the need to pass comment or make you feel bad? Really there is no evidence to suggest that it harmful to the baby so it’s not child abuse. We criticize the media for poor body image that most women have but really it’s women themselves making us doubt ourselves and our decisions. We are the ones buying magazines because so and so lost 40kilos in a day.
      The next person to ask me ‘why’ am I having a c section after having a vaginal birth can kiss my behind. It’s my decision based on what’s good for me and really why did you choose that hairstyle (it’s about as appropriate)
      Motherhood is a guilt ridden place enough with out so called sisters giving the head shake and tut.

      I’m two weeks away from my c section and daily am grateful that I have the choice to have one otherwise I would not be havin this second child. So I’m prochoice in all things in life: how dare we judge someone unless we have walked a day in their shoes.
      Motherhood is the outcome why oh why do we all have to worry so much about the transition part which is giving birth.

    • C

      I think that elective C-sections are something something shunned possibly by the same women who will make you feel bad for not feeding right from the breast or for not breast feeding at all. It isn’t quite necessary. Call these things beautiful all you want, but I see little difference in the people who as children were born “less beautifully” or fed “less beautifully”.

    • Vernetta

      I have read all of your posts because I wanted to research c-sections. I’m 37 weeks pregnant and was just notified that my baby girl is in the breeched position and was told by my OB that a C-section would be the route to go if she doesn’t change position on her own. At first the thought of a c-section scared me but now I’m getting used to the idea. I have a five year old boy that was from a vaginal birth. I had torn so bad that it took my OB about an hour to get me all sewn back together. I dont regret having him vaginally but the tearing was just what happened…. I guess what I’m trying to say is that every situation is different, someone’s best c-section experience cannot be compared to someone’s worst vaginal birth…..after reading all your posts I realize that now. I shouldn’t be looking for advice because no two stories are the same. I will just hope for the best and do what needs done and I know I will never judge another woman’s story-we need to stick together!

    • Sophia

      I had a planned c-section in Canada for my first birth, and there is not one day I regret it. I was fortunate to find an OB who was sympathetic to my absolute terror that my vagina would be hurt during childbirth… terror so bad that I could not watch birth videos without breaking down sobbing. When I started to think about a planned c-section at around 26 weeks pregnant, I was still very uneducated about c-section. I had really bought the lie that c-section was VERY DAMAGING TO BABIES and that I was selfish, lazy, etc. for desperately wanting one. And then I started reading. And then I realized I had been lied to. And then I got angry.
      I want a small family– not more than two children. I am more comfortable in the controlled environment of a surgical theatre than I ever could be during birth. Where I live there is not even the promise of an epidural during childbirth. I did not want to have tearing or trauma to my genitals. In fact, I did not want my child to pass through that part of my body AT ALL.
      He was born by c-section, and I will never regret it. I recovered, and I was elated. I felt like I had cheated death.
      My body, of course, is different now– there are many ways the body changes after pregnancy. But my sexual selfhood is safe. I suffer no medical consequences from my c-section and would happily take the small scar across my belly for the 4th degree tear my mother sustained birthing me. As it stood, my son had a giant head just like me, and just like all the babies in our family.
      As for having to pay for it myself– screw yourself! It’s not a cosmetic procedure. If that’s the case, you can pay for your own c-section when your homebirth goes whacky or your TOL during VBAC doesn’t turn out. Furthermore, why on this earth would you want to force a woman to endure something she does not want to when there is a perfectly reasonable option (for some women) available? Sadistic, much? No thanks.
      CHOICE PEOPLE. It’s my body. I have a right to say what happens to it. I’m pro-choice. Period. Most women are more afraid of c-section than of vaginal delivery and I doubt there’s going to be a rush to emulate me. But my experience was very good, and I will not be having a VBAC nor do I feel any desire to, ever. The BS and rhetoric from the natural birth movement means absolutely nothing to me, because I can read studies, and I see how people in that movement lie, skew data, and manipulate vulnerable women.
      To some I seem selfish. Perhaps I am. I also know that if my vagina and pelvic floor were ruined, it would mentally destroy me. And frankly, yes, that is selfish. Get over it.
      I knew the risks, by the way, and made an informed choice. My OB asked me how many children I was planning on having (2), and whether or not I would want to VBAC (hell no!), and if either of those had been yes, then the deal was off. I will have one more simple abdominal surgery (and yes, in the grand scheme of surgeries c-section is pretty straightforward and safe) and then I will go on with my life. I breastfed my son, we bonded immediately, and while I am not happy about having another surgery (who would be?) at least it doesn’t terrify me. It’s just what has to happen to get the baby out of me. The pain of a surgical wound is much different than a wrecked vagina and pelvic floor. I’ve heard my whole life about the pain and terror of other women I know who have suffered severe trauma during “natural” childbirth. Not for me. As far as I am concerned getting to choose otherwise is HUGE progress. I don’t need counseling anymore than someone who wants to birth in her own home because it feels SAFE does. We cover that, we should cover c-sections.

      • Mrs. W

        I can tell you that being a woman who plans a c-section that doesn’t happen is its own special kind of hell. I’m glad it worked out for you, we aren’t all so lucky.

      • Sunshine1984

        Just curious..What part of Canada do you live in?? I’m in Ottawa, and I not yet pregnant, but I asked my obgyn before I get pregnant if I could choose a c-section. She said no and that it is not recommended for a first baby!! I’m not getting any younger, but I’m terrfied of vaginal birth. I feel like I’m missing out on being a mom because I can not choose.

      • second time C-section

        Get another maternity physician! I am in BC but was able to consider all options. The birth process is the smallest part of motherhood and should not impact your choice to have a baby. I would fight this and get another Dr!!!

      • Mrs. W

        Victoria, BC. I’d contact Dr. Magnus Murphy, he may be aware of options in your area. Being terrified of birth is a sad reason to forego motherhood, particularly if being able to plan a c-section is all that it would take to make it a viable option. It can be done.

    • daniela

      Message to “the world”:

      Stop scrutinizing my vagina and my choices. We are not living in the Dark Ages anymore, but still behave like we do. Witch hunts and high horses, oh my.

      My body, my business. Whichever way I want it to be. And woe to whoever tries to take this right away from me.

      I will not judge your choice, and I do not care if you judge mine. Your opinion does not matter to me, whoever “you” are. If you are my care provider, your duty is to inform me of facts, risks & stats. And then step back. If you are a vigilante, your duty is to f— off.

      It is in our nature AND education to second-guess our decisions, explain, fear judgement, appease, give up. Time to stop doing that on all fronts, starting with our own bodies.

      Do your research, ask for information, but do NOT let somebody else make this decision for you. Do not care how others react to it. There are risks either way, nothing in life is risk-free. But your situation is unique,and you know yourself best. And you are willing to take risks or otherwise you’d not be having a baby. So nobody has the right to “know better” than yourself.

    • Mrs.W

      I asked for an elective c-section with my first – even found an OBGYN to agree to the request. More than 16 months ago the day for surgery came, and because my surgery was an ‘add to slate’ it got bumped by more urgent cases…the next day came and again bumped…and then I went into labour and there was no anesthesiologist. There was no c-section, there was no epidural. I live in Victoria, BC.

      To this day, the day my daughter was born is a recurring nightmare. The healthy baby is the only good thing from that day.

      • anna

        Mrs. W,
        I am considering a c-section because my first birth was a vaginal trauma. I’m pregnant now with my second and I don’t think I can handle even one contraction.

        It was two days or unbearable pain, screaming, and finally my husband demanded an epidural because I was too out of it to ask for one. Thank god for my husband!

        Then they turned down the epidural so I could push for four hours and I wanted to die. I have never known that type of pain could exist. I remember vomiting with each push and thinking it would never end.

        I tore, had stitches, and was terrified to pee or have a bowel movement because it burned.

        I have told a couple people my plans and I get so much heat for it! It is bizarre, really. I mean, if I can’t handle the second birth, I’ll have to have an emergency c-section and can that be any better, really?

        The women I’ve met who have had planned c-sections didn’t suffer from post-partum, healed more quickly than I did with my vaginal birth, and were totally happy with their decision. They also didn’t do it for vanity reasons, but they did it because the first labor was so difficult.

        Having a c-section is met with the same scorn as having an abortion. I am pro both of them, but it is weird that others can get so involved in another’s reproductive system! How bizarre is that? Can you imagine if we went around asking grown men if they were circumcised and then condemning them if they were or were not?


      • Mrs. W

        Or even went around asking if they were vasectomized and giving them crap for that decision. Women need to be informed of their options and need to be enabled to make choices that best meet their needs. I’m tired of the silence around the risks of vaginal births (ask moms about the availability of pain relief, the frequence of tears, stress urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse and sex after the baby – you might be surprised at the stories they tell) – meanwhile c-sections are demonized.

        The only fact is that the baby must be born – there are only two ways that can happen and the mother needs to make a choice – and it should be an informed one. Vaginal birth is deserving of just as much “informed consent” as cesarean birth.

    • Randa

      Fantastic post! Good for you for coming out with it. Whenever I mention to ANYONE that I am thinking of it, I get pounced on. I have learned to shut up and keep it to myself.

    • Adrienne

      Thank you for posting this! I found that in our society it is perfectly acceptable to state that you want your “birth plan” to include a water birth, hypnobirth, med-free birth, or even a home birth, but if you tell someone you want an elective c-section you are typically met with harsh criticism. It was very refreshing to read your post. There are many ways to have a baby and we should respect each woman’s individual right to choose which way is best for her.

      • jpm

        Nice try, but none of those things are comparable to an elective surgery.

      • BDi

        No but forceps are! Why is it acceptable to yank a baby out by its head during birth but if that were done when it was born it would be child cruelty. The damage that can be done to both mother and child is awful – incontinence, pelvic floor prolapse, Bell’s palsy and even death. What people need to remember is that cesareans save lives. When vaginal delivery is going wrong Drs go straight for the safer option, a cesarean! The only reason forceps are an option is for monetary reasons alone. Less than half of vaginal births are spontaneous and without medical intervention. Birth is an odds game where you weigh up what you want least because no way is entirely safe – 1 in 11 women die at birth and 1 in 5 babies die before the age of 5 in Afghanistan. The WHO states that the best birth plan is the one safest for the mother and baby. I want to go straight to the safer option and I think its a woman’s choice just like abortion, breast implants, tummy tucks and all other things they may choose to do.

    • Brandon

      If you want to have an elective c-section, go for it! But I dont think it should be covered under provincial health insurance. It’s not a medical necessity and in most cases vaginal birth is safer for the mother when looking at mortality rates.

      Just like cosmetic surgery, elective c-sections should not be covered. Given the budget issues facing provincial healthcare right now, procedures that are not medically necessary should not be covered.

      Now ladies, I’m ready for the pitch-forks, the “YOU dont have a vagina and dont get a say!” and “You dont have to give birth/Try giving birth” arguments. Well I say this to you (1) Taxes pay for the health care system, therefore everyone should get a say in what is covered and what is not. (2) Pregnancy is a choice, just like birth control, abortion, and refraining for intercourse. IF you CHOSE to be pregnant than you should understand the hardships involved.

      • anna

        Brandon, I think that if women should not be allowed a c-section, then men should not be allowed an anesthetic for a vasectomy. You don’t need it after all, right?
        by the way, you’re lucky your mother gave birth to you. If she had had a c-section, you think you should pay the system back??

      • http://www.facebook.com/dana.schreiner.7 Dana Schreiner


        Brandon never said that women shouldn’t be allowed to have c sections, merely that they should pay for their own elective c sections. Also if you aren’t giving anesthesia for a vasectomy id assume you think there shouldn’t be epidural or anethesisa for birthing vaginally or c section…OUCH! I don’t know if vasectomys are covered by provincial health insurance, so I won’t discuss that….oddly enough you didn’t either, which is what Brandon was talking about. I, like him, don’t think you think you’re statement made much sense and was in no way a counter attack of what he said.

      • Brandon

        Anna, I have read your comment several times and still cannot make sense of it? How do c-sections and vasectomies correlate? Are you trying to suggest that c-sections are akin to anesthetic? Somehow that just seems rediculous to me. You know there are these amazing things called epidurals right that are designed to deal with the pain associated with child birth. Also c-section make for a painful recovery time. However, you could also be referring to the elective nature of both procedures– in that case, no neither one should be covered.

        Elective c-sections are invasive medical procedures that should be attempted if there is medical grounds for it. The procedure increases the dangers of child birth, damages the uterus and lower abs. Elective c-sections do not reduce the risks associated with normal birth, rather the opposite happens, the danger to child and mother goes up (This argument was pulled from a WHO study — overall the WHO advises against elective c-sections). That being said, if you are willing to take the risks then best of luck. But I don’t want to pay for it.

        “by the way, you’re lucky your mother gave birth to you. If she had a c-section, you think you should pay the system back??”

        Well ofcourse I’m glad my mother gave birth to me. Should I have to pay the system back? Huh? Why would I have to do that? It wouldn’t have been me who elected for the surgery, so why should I have to pay for it. If she had decided on an elective c-section, then yes she should have paid for it (the key word is elective). Overall, I found your comment very foolish.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dana.schreiner.7 Dana Schreiner

        :) you go dude

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    • Tori

      I think mothers are free to choose how to give birth. Personally, I’ve already had one baby and the idea of a c-section scares me a whole lot more than vaginal birth does. I just think the pain would be worse AFTER the baby because of being cut open and having staples and a draining wound to deal with. I’m a wimp and I want as little complications/pain after the birth as possible.

      • Justme

        Depending on the doctor and the hospital, a c-section doesn’t necessarily have to include staples and a draining wound. My incision was below the bikini line and involved no visible staples or stitches and there was definitely no draining wound. Just a little pink scar where it was all lasered back together.

      • Tiffany Sears

        Mine wasn’t bad at all. I had a vicodin prescription but stopped it after four days because it was interfering with breastfeeding. The key to it is having help and rest. If you can’t do that, and many can’t, a c-section can be much harder.

      • Idigia

        Tori, I know you wrote this a long time ago, but this is exactly how I feel. I am pregnant and terrified of a third c-sec. Women that get into them because of fear of pain have no idea what they’re signing into. I don’t care if they don’t want to push, and also if they don’t want to spend days in difficult labors (who would want that?) but feeling as sick as I was with my non-elective c-secs is something I don’t wish to anyone. Worse, with the second one I had a terrible anesthesiologist (the only thing worse than an emergency c-sec is a programmed one). So you can imagine my trauma. I’ll go into labor anytime and take the very slim risk of scar opening just to avoid another horrible thing like that.

    • daughter

      giving birth hurts. the first time is scary because you have never done it. yeah, i get that. but to have an elective c-sec just because? giving in to irrational fears, that’s childish. why bother having children if you are so frightened? i gave birth to four children vaginally, hurt like hell the first time. you were not allowed your epidural until five centimeters so i spent some time crying and yelling. thank God for the person who invented epidurals! i still went on to have three more children. never once considered a c-sec.

      how do you plan to teach your children to handle irrational fear?

    • Nicky

      Good god there are some harsh people in the world arent there? I had a 3day labour with my boy whos now nearly 3 and he got stuck at 9cm for hrs i was exhausted and couldnt have pushed even if i had gone to 10 i ended up having an emergency csection when baby got in distress, im now 6mths pregnant with my second and yep u guessed it im opting for a csection. I had a miscarriage before this baby was concieved so spent the first 12 weeks worried sick id lose it then the next 8 weeks worrying if i had contractd a virus that would cause birth defects. That was 20 weeks worried sick so ive opted for csection because i dont want to worry anymore i dont want to sit and wonder if ill have another long labour or not or another 9lb baby, what i choose should be my choice and for my personal reasons, all those high and mighty mums or indeed dads out there that want to challenge that, bring it on! i also failed to breast feed my son and plan to bottle feed this one SHOCK HORROR!!!! Am i going to burn in hell? will i heck, we r all different thankfully. So hats off to Rebecca for expressing how u felt but u shouldnt have been made to feel u need to justify ur decisions :)

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    • Lola

      The way you bring Canada into your argument is disgusting and frankly, its a poor choice to add to your ‘argument’. Move to the states, you give Canada a bad rap. The reason elective c-sections are frowned upon in Canada is because they are hazardous and much more dangerous to mother And baby = fact. To be honest, I can’t understand why you would be afraid of natural labour (something our bodies are designed to do) versus being unnaturally and surgically cut open? However, that is besides my point. Money only comes into play when you compare Canada and US, because surgeons get paid More in the US for Csections, hence why they are more popular. Don’t get your ideas mixed up. As a Canadain, tax paying citizen – I am less concerned with my money going towards your csection compared to the additional risks you willingly put yourself and baby through needlessly.

      • Mrs. W

        Lola -
        I whole heartedly disagree with your reasoning here. Women who are giving birth are also paying tax dollars – and this is a health decision that needs to be made by the woman and her doctor. She must be free to decide how her baby is delivered, it is her body and her baby at stake.

        It’s an absolute myth that c-sections pose greater risks to both mother and baby – there are and have been a few high-quality studies that have demonstrated that the risks to the mother are comparable to planned vaginal birth and the risks to the child are actually lower. Much of the increased risks attributable to caesarean delivery is a result of cesareans which are conducted under emergency circumstances – circumstances where the mother has been labouring for a long period of time, her body already exhausted from those efforts and her fetus already likely to be exhibiting signs of distress. Further, most cost studies on this issue are extremely limited and only look at the costs associated with the delivery itself and the immediate post partum period. Some of the impacts of vaginal delivery do not show up until well past that period – pelvic floor injuries are more common than one would first like to assume, vaginal delivery is a risk factor for those injuries. Further, severe birth injuries like HIE, cerebral palsy, and erb’s palsy are mitigated by planned cesarean delivery – these tend to be very expensive. Lastly, the much higher costs of emergent cesarean are avoided with planned cesarean. When this broader view of the costs of birth is taken – much of the cost difference disappears. Lastly, some of the cost difference that is frequently sited compares an epidural free vaginal delivery to an average cesarean delivery (emergent and planned cesareans) – are you suggesting women should also not have access to effective pain relief for their labour and deliveries as well, because it is expensive?

        Vaginal delivery isn’t all unicorns and rainbows – and neither is caesarean delivery. Women should be informed for the relative risks and benefits of both treatment options and allowed to plan for the one that best meets their needs and the needs of their infant and their families.

        You want to know what is un-Canadian – the idea that we should be intolerant of other’s legitimate health needs…and the denial of legitimate rights to patient autonomy.

      • 2nd time C-section

        I laboured for 78 hours, my baby went into distress, and I had an emergency C-section. I spent 5 days in hospital due to the fact that patients like me are not actually fit for surgery after laboring so long. If I had known my baby was going to be so big I would have requested (and been advised to have) an elective C-section. If we had persevered for vaginal delivery my baby would probably have died. Thank goodness my medical team in BC were not as puritanical as you seem to be. Natural labor is not something we are all designed to do- 30% of babies used to die before medical intervention of labor. I am pregnant again and have been advised my my prenatal physician to have an elective C-section, and I am really grateful.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dana.schreiner.7 Dana Schreiner

        I definitely agree with what you’re saying, but did you also know that infant and mother’s death rates have gone up with increased c section rates. There are comparable risks with either way of birthing, and I wholeheartedly believe medical intervention has saved more and numerous lives especially in emergency incidences as such, but you can also cause the opposite effect too.

    • Lou

      I have never been a birth fetishist, and I have never desired to go through the process of vaginal birth. I want biological children (and possibly adopted kids too) but not the vaginal delivery. That’s why when I have children, I plan to have an elective c-section..and for those harping on about costs to the taxpayer, I’ll go private. If I am paying, I don’t see why I should be denied my choice. I am pro-choice and I defend the right of all women to have the birth they wish (or not-birth in the case of those who choose to terminate).

      So my ideal birth:
      * planned c-section, date chosen in advance- so there is time to wrap up work commitments, notify family and get them to fly out
      * have a general c-section if possible- I want to be completely out and then wake up to my newborn baby
      * just my mother holding my hand in the delivery room (the hubs and family can wait outside)
      * I’d rather pump then breastfeed. In my parent’s country, wetnurses used to be common, and I wish they were available to hire in the West

      Both my brother and I were elective c-sections, and we’re both successful and productive people with higher degrees..so I don’t get why Sanctimommy types judge c-sections as being ‘bad mothering.’

      • Lou

        And yes I am too posh to push! I laugh when people use that as an insult, I have no qualms saying I’m too posh and I find the process of natural childbirth animalistic and frankly disgusting. I hate gore and I hate pain, why would I put myself through that discomfort?

      • Aurora

        You’ll be getting gore and pain no matter how you birth, Lou.

      • Mrs. W

        Lou -
        If you are in Canada – you should know that there is no “private system” that provides elective c-sections for pay. As such, if you wish to avoid the public system, you will likely need to leave the country to give birth. So in short either you can find a care provider/hospital to support your desired method of birth – and it will be covered under the public system (but you may have to pay to travel to access care) or you can access the private system in another country and pay completely out of pocket (note this may have implications for citizenship).

        Frankly, the evidence on the expected cost difference between planned elective cesarean and planned vaginal birth is debatable at best – and given that you and your family pay taxes, why should you not recieve the benefits of doing so?

    • PK

      Very well-written Rebecca! I totally understand you. I have been suffering from anxiety & stress for a very long time and I’m still under treatment for it. Like you, I am terrified by the thought of going through the labor of vaginal birth one day. Sometimes I even think maybe I should never get pregnant … I hope elective C-Sections will be more accessible for Canadian women in the future.
      I am so happy you could manage to get the C-Section and that it worked out for you. I appreciate if you could please send me the name of the doctor and the hospital where you could get the C-Section. myuniversity50@yahoo.com
      All the best to you.

    • Maureen

      Women are meant to give birth vaginally; C-sections are for emergencies, not for whiny little brats who think they’re too good to give birth. The comparison to CZJ and her mental disorder was frankly ridiculous and insulting; and then to insult the healthcare workers who helped your entitled ass by cutting you open and removing the baby you were too lazy/childish to push out was the cherry on the cake. Give thanks you live in a country where entitled whiners like yourself are accommodated by the healthcare system.

      • Mahli

        I resent the comment “Who think they’re too good to give birth”! I most definitely gave birth to my daughter, but via csection. Sorry, I feel like women who shame other mothers for having csections are just bitter because their vadges are destroyed. and will never be the same. I’d be bitter too. I saw a friend have to get an episiotomy, and I swore that very day that I would NEVER deliver vaginally. My daughter is perfectly healthy, as am I, so I don’t see the problem.

      • Scarlette

        I am sure you had a natural child birth? No medicine? I hope so.

        Guess what, if you didn’t, you’re just as much as a ‘whiny brat’ as this OP. If you used technology to alleviate pain and distress, you are no better. Next time, go all natural. Midwife, no drugs.

    • Marfisa

      Hi Rebecca,

      I am planning to get pregnant but the thought of having a
      vaginal birth makes not want to have a baby. I am terrified of vaginal labor.
      Could you please give me the name of your doctor and
      hospital where you had your kid? marfysa@hotmail.com

      Thank you.

    • Shav

      You are a knob jockey.

    • Kendal

      Thank you so much for this article. The last few weeks I have been scrounging the internet for someone who understood me and the way that I felt, and I have finally found something. Every time I even think about the possibility that a doctor would deny me the ability to elect a c-section, I break down and sob to the point that it is difficult to breathe. It isn’t anything that I have any control over, and if I had to delivery vaginally, I know without any uncertainty that I would absolutely lose my mind in the time leading up to it, as well as thoroughly during and would absolutely cause tremendous detrimental effects to my unborn child/the child that was being born. I live in Ontario, Canada and if you know of any doctors who would be open to allowing me an elected caesarian, PLEASE let me know. I really appreciate you advocating for a mother’s right to make that decision and make judgements about her capacity to delivery vaginally- and the way that you explained the stigma associated with the decision made me feel so empowered that I actually DO have a choice and don’t have to suffer in this way.

      • Lisa

        I live in Ontario as well and feel the same. Did you have any luck Kendal?

      • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

        I fear that she may not have….

    • Damswell

      I had a planned c section 10 weeks ago and it was the best decision i ever made…my experience was super positive and for same reasons of panic attacks etc was the best decision for both myself and my son….recovery was effortless and complication free….

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    • http://www.facebook.com/kimberly.lake.58 Kimberly Alicia Lake

      I have already had three vaginal births..I have had urinary incontinence and weakening of the pelvic floor,and I tore two out of three times,third time I was cut..this time ,I want an elective cesearean,and also want my tubes tied the same day I have this baby…I’m sure someone will have an issue like this,however,like the article states,those people can bite me…it my body,an my baby and no one has the right to tell me what to do with it…

    • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

      Rebecca (and others who are cesarean by choice moms), the lack of awareness and understanding about this issue is astounding. At its very core it is about a woman’s right to make medical decisions for herself. When that autonomy is violated – it strikes to the core and is akin to any non-consensual force, it is WRONG to deny the choice and to facilitate it to the degree possible once it has been made. While the resources available to women who would choose cesarean are limited that is slowly changing. Magnus Murphy and Pauline Hull have written a book “Choosing Cesarean”, there’s a Facebook group “Cesarean by Choice Awareness Network”, and recently (in July 2012) a Canadian lawsuit was filed by a woman who was forced to deliver vaginally in 2010.

    • Vtil

      Wow. I’m six months pregnant and think I’ve just fallen in love with this post. Good for you! I couldn’t have said it better myself. It was comforting to read that someone else feels similarly, especially when you’re inundated on a daily basis by the ‘soap-box moms’ on a crusade to save your soul from the horrors of modern medicine. Thanks for posting.

    • Tiffany Sears

      I have absolutely no regrets about my c-section. I had to have the baby out that day, but could have gone with induction if I really pushed for it. But even though I had been planning on natural a c-section was much less terrifying to me than insta-labor. I also had never had any desire to go through labor and had the same terrifying panic attacks regarding it. It was absolutely easier for me mentally. Physically it wasn’t much of a problem, but then I had the father of baby at home with me for two weeks, which I know is not always possible for women, meaning I could recover quickly and leisurely.

    • Ben

      Another believer in the naturalistic fallacy. Some women were not ment to give birth vaginially, some of them due to this or that mutation or poor luck would die giving birth vaginally, and/or their baby.

    • Jenny

      Half-way through my pregnancy I was determined I wanted a natural birth (Vaginal, no epidural, the whole 9 yards). At 35 weeks I received an ultrasound showing my baby boy was in the 97th percentile for body mass and 46 percentile for head. BIG difference. This was cause for alarm for my dr. She suggested c-section. For 3 weeks I prayed and did everything I could to make myself go into labor early. Nothing happened. At 38 weeks, I decided to give up and schedule the c-section. Actually scheduling the c-section made me feel more at peace knowing my baby was going to come into this world safely and would not have to face a possible complication. What is discomforting is the amount of grief I received from 90% of women about my scheduled c-section. Not to mention the bad talking of my dr. They don’t know my dr nor what I am going through. My husband and I spent 20 minutes in counseling with her about this and in my 38th week I made another phone call to her about my anxieties about having a c-section. My anxieties were only increased because of the judgements I received from these women. So this is my suggestion to anyone facing scheduled c-section. If it gives you peace, then forget what everyone else thinks. I need to take this advice myself.

    • sarahliz

      When I have a child here are my three options — panic throughout my pregnancy about the uncertainty of the birth and either lose my baby in a self-induced miscarriage during a panic attack, send myself into early labor during a panic attack and have a premature baby with numberous complications for both of us, take dangerous benzodiazapines to get me through the pregnancy and maintain the anxiety but also risk harming my baby, OR elect for a c-section to relieve a lot of my anxiety and deliever a healthy baby at term with a lengthy recovery for me but a healthy pregnancy for my child because I was able to be proactive and plan ahead in order to manage and prevent as much anxiety as possible withough the interference of potentially dangerous medications. I will pick option number 3. Thank you for this article.