‘Too posh to push’ pushes me over the edge!

Grrr. I have just read an excellent post over on Is There A Plan B where she discusses a news article claiming that four in ten women are now ‘too posh to push’. That term really makes me angry!
Regular readers of my blog will know that the birth of my son was not a nice experience. I have had two emegency sections and I DO NOT consider myself too posh to push.

I actually consider myself to have missed out on one of the most important things a woman can do in life. I have never experienced a ‘natural’ birth and I have never experienced the simple feeling of my baby’s skin on mine straight after birth. My babies were both whisked away upon birth. They were both examined and cleaned before they were presented to me. My daughter was only handed to me once they had finished stitching me up. My son was alive for a whole hour before we were together.
After my son was born, the entire front half of my body was covered in angry bruises. I couldn’t walk. I was sent home from hospital with no pain relief. I struggled to bond with my son and I still suffer from insomnia, anxiety and feelings of panicky desperation.

And the media thinks that I took the easy option????

Having an emergency section was the LAST thing I wanted for my son’s birth. In the end, what I wanted was completely ignored. I signed the consent form for my operation after it had all happened, after they’d performed the necessary to keep my son and me alive.
The post that inspired this post is entitled ‘Why are more women “choosing” caesearean sections?’ and the quotations around the word ‘choosing’ says it all. Some of us aren’t choosing at all. I know that there are women who do choose the section with the tummy tuck but I think that even those women are few and far between now.

‘Too Posh to Push’ is a thoughtless, out-dated and cruel term to give to any woman. A planned section does not always have to be planned for a medical reason. A woman’s emotional state should be considered too and goodness knows I wish my consultant had seen it that way too.

35 responses to “‘Too posh to push’ pushes me over the edge!

  • TheBoyandMe

    I was adamant that I wanted number 2 to be a c-section. Having read your blog, I am thinking that I need to try for a natural but in a different hospital. I am so sorry that you feel so upset about your labours. Huge hug.

    I love your blog.

    • ghostwritermummy

      Aw, thank you that means a lot to me. I was so undecided after Eva’s birth. I felt I wanted to experience going into labnour naturally and then later on I thought that I should try for a natural delivery. When it came to it I was so scared and tense and my baby wasn’t coming out that way anyway so a planned section would’ve been the best option. Its hard to know but I should’ve stuck with my instincts. Eva’s section was way more relaxed and I recovered so quickly, I think the second time because it was so urgent they were quite rough with me and so the bruising etc made recovery a lot harder. Do what you feel is best for you and if thats a section then its your decision. A planned one may not mean terrible recovery etc.

  • Manda

    Great post. I’m not a CS mother and that term even riles ME up! I was very fortunate to have my babies naturally but my hat goes off to those who had to have a caesarian for whatever reason. You’re all much braver than I!

  • Alyson

    I can’t express how much I agree, in theory I choose to have my 2nd and 3rd by planned section, in truth I didn’t choose… I begged, hounded, pleaded and demanded it happen after such a horrific GA section 1st time around. This wasn’t a choice, in the ‘wouldn’t it be nice’ kind of way… it was entirely required for my mental health

    • ghostwritermummy

      Looking back, I think a planned section was necessary for me this time too but I never stood up for myself. You’re right, a section under GA is thoroughly awful and next time I don’t even get an option- it will be section and last one at that as I have been told three is the limit. That said, I would be stronger in demanding a section anyway. Thanks for your comments

  • Parklover

    I agree, the term is highly offensive. Women may have all kinds of reasons for wanting to have a CS. These should be listened to and respected, not belittled and brushed aside.

  • superlittlemen

    I’ve been following your posts on birthing experiences and keep debating about putting both of mine down into words as well as I am still very much haunted by them, maybe it would help – I’m still undecided.

    This too posh to push thing though really resonates with me, I will never forget a few weeks after our 1st son’s birth popping into his work & someone asking how I was & making a quip about being in the too posh to push brigade.

    This was at a time whereby I’d been to hell & back, couldn’t grasp why I wasn’t still pregnant or the fact I was apparently a new mum with no baby to show off as nurses & doctors were caring for him, not me. Someone must of seen my face as I remember being turned & led out of the office to my husbands car – I’m a feisty one & was about to let rip.

    I’ve never forgotten how crushing those 4 words were.

    Now they just plain anger me, I know which I would of chosen had I of been given the choice.

  • CaroleHolland

    This wound me up too. I was lucky enough to have a fairly simple natural birth with my first and am hoping for the same with number two (due imminently) – I have a major fear of CS and anyone who has been through it, chosen for whatever reason or through necessity has my utmost respect. People shouldn’t be labelled like that it’s just wrong, every person is different and should be respected.

  • Kat @ iRant iRave

    I had a CS due to my son being breech but not because I had lost any sense that my body as incapable of birthing him or that I was scared of the pain but because i had lost all faith in the medical staff who I had seen. Throughout my pregnancy my appointments were arranged late (first scan at 19 weeks) and I never saw the same midwife or OB more than twice. I wanted nothing more than to give my son a natural birth but I knew that psychologically unless I had confidence in “the experts” that there was little chance it would happen.

    The CS itself was brilliant but the care both before and after was appalling. The staff were over stretched to the point I was asking for my own meds to be given and left the hospital less than 36 hours after I arrived. I dread to think what it must be like now since they started cutting back on maternity staff here a couple of yeas ago.

  • Him Up North

    Ignorant bloke alert: some interesting research herein… http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-11485987

  • Nat

    Well I am posh, but hell I would of pushed. I find the ‘loss’ of not actually birthing a child, quite hard. Life is what it is. But that sense of loss probably won’t leave me.

  • SAHMlovingit

    Superb post Susanne!

    I had an elective section due to the fact my daughter was stuck in the breech position and we tried everything to turn her. When I knew I was going to have to have a section I was in pieces, I cried constantly for days as I wanted to experience a natural child birth. I’d built myself up to it, practicing positions and even using a hypnotherapy CD and planning out a water birth. My birth plan was torn up and I was distraught.

    On the final days leading up to my section I experienced a shop assistant who asked me when I was due, I told her my section date and said the baby was breech. She laughed and used the ‘too posh to push’ line on me. I walked out the shop and cried my eyes out again. I’ve never returned to that shop.

    It annoys me that the media have made up this line, it’s stuck and it gets thrown out and used as a blanket to cover all c-sections…thus hurting us women who didn’t have a choice.

  • Alma

    3 words: You’re my hero! OK maybe that’s technically 4, but it doesn’t change the sentiment.

    I had an elective c-section with my first and mainly because I was being bullied by a midwife into delivering naturally when I was 39 weeks and baby was breech, pelvis wasn’t wide enough, I had severe SPD, and yet I was still being told “he might turn at the last minute and all might go well”.

    “Might”?? “The last minute”?! Excuse me?! Are you seriously willing to wait to the very last minute? And then she had the nerve to say “otherwise, we will go for an emergency c-section”. Was this midwife for real?? I begged, pleaded, cried and had a nervous breakdown which all fell on deaf ears.

    My parents are both doctors and the further along I progressed in the pregnancy the more they were certain I wouldn’t be able to deliver naturally. Thankfully they came with me to speak to the consultant and I was booked in exactly one week later at 39 weeks + 6 days! They can label me whatever they wish, at the end of the day, I have the most gorgeous son in the world, and I wouldn’t change how he came into this world for a second! I have absolutely no regrets and neither should you! I salute you Oh-Brave-One!!

  • Blue Sky

    I wish I had had a C-section! If Smiley had been delivered quickly by C-section when she got stuck she might not be so severely brain damaged today.

  • Glen

    yep – you women amaze me when it comes to this whole birthing business. I’ve witnessed two births and it is never pleasant. I firmly – firmly – believe you have to do whatever you need, whatever it maybe. drugs, no drugs, water, no water, caesearean or out of the unmentionables. except for medical reasons, such as yours where the choice has to go elsewhere, there is only one person who can make the choice and that choice has to be respected.

  • Harriet

    Thank you for the plug and sorry you couldn’t comment….

    Sorry too you had such bad experiences. I’m actually (although I didn’t say so in the post) in the opposite camp, having had an “easy” (in so far as these things are ever easy) drug-free labour with my first and a planned c-s with my second and third on medical advice as they were (and are) identical twins. With number four (due in May) I am hoping for the first, just because the recovery was easier, although I actually recovered very quickly from the c-s, I think probably because I hadn’t gone through the trauma of a long labour before hand…

    Anyway, as I said, and you have put so eloquently, it just makes me cross that people will judge both me, and the relationship I have with my beautiful 2nd and 3rd born daughters, just because of the way they were born….

    Oh, and in the article writer’s defence, it was just a passing comment in an otherwise well thought out and interesting article, but it still really p1ssed me off!

  • tamsyn

    hear hear *takes hat off* i had an emergency section after 23 1/2 hrs of horrendous labour, and felt violated, and robbed, robbed of the first 1 3/4 hours of my first child’s existence…THE worst experience of my life to date, and i am certainly not ‘too posh to push’. i managed to overule the authorities, and gave birth (not easily, but) naturally to my 3 girls.

    people need to be told!

    again, another fantastic post, tamsyn xxx

  • Sarah

    I had an emergency c section with my first child after a failed induction due to pre eclampsia meant that my baby was in distress for 36 hours! He’s happy and healthy thankfully but it could have ended so differently.
    Before I fell pregnant with my second baby, I was determined that I would attempt a natural birth as I was desperate to experience one but when I got pregnant, the memories of those excruciating hours delivering my Son came back, along with the worry and the fear when they told me he was in distress and when he almost had to be rushed off to the SCBU and my heart breaking when I had to spend the forst 2 hours of his life in recovery away from him…and I just could’t do it. At every antenatal appointment, whenever the birth was discussed, i broke down in tears with fear and STILL the stupid consultant laughed at me and refused to book me in for a section! At 37 weeks, they finally gave me a date which just happened to be when I would have been almost 42 weeks pregnant! After another round of arguing, I finally got a sensible date for my section and my baby was delivered safely.

    I still mourn the loss of my natural delivery as we are having no more children so I’ll never get another chance but I had to do what I felt was safest for me and my baby – and a VBAC on a ward branded “baby death ward” by the local newspaper was NOT it!

    All that worry and fighting certainly didn’t make it feel like the “easy option” for me!

  • mamamakes

    I had all four of mine by C-section due to a small pelvis. When I first found out out that I could never give birth naturally (After planning an at home waterbirth) I was absolutely devastated. I cried for weeks, But I soon got over it after realising if I’d been born into a different era when C sections were not so available I would have died during child birth with my first child. That thought always has me Thanking God for C-sections! x

  • mummy@bofortea

    Fab post. DD was born 1 month early by c-sec on our OBGYN’s recommendation. It wasn’t my choice at all, I had all my birth ‘tools’ ready at home, but she was born healthy and that’s all that matters to me.

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