The common reaction to unassisted childbirth is usually negative. We live in a world that doesn't blink an eye at epidurals and cesareans, but immediately comes to the conclusion
that an unassisted, unhindered, unmedicated, intervention-free birth is completely ridiculous and dangerous. Doesn't that seem a bit.... odd?
The average person who has been induced, had epidural or had c-section hasn't done much research on the procedures and does not fully realize the risks involved (or may believe their
are few, or none), but seems to happily go along with whatever. More and more women opt for an epidural or a cesarean in the beginning of their pregnancy. They don't even give their
bodies a chance to do what it is made to do- give birth.
When did birthing become a medical process? Animals do not need to be assisted in giving birth. They know what to do. They do not need someone telling them when they are in
labor, when to push, when to breathe. When did we start trusting "medical professionals" over our own bodies? Why have we stopped listening to what our bodies are telling us, and
started relying on our doctors to tell us what we need, what we must do, what is best?
Is it really best?
I won't go into too much detail in attempt to convince you to see my side. There are stacks of books, loads of articles, and various websites out there to educate you in the ways of
unassisted, unhindered birth. Many women have posted their unassisted birth stories online. I also believe than an unassisted birth is not for everyone, and therefore, I would never push
someone into such a choice. However, if you want me to be open to your choices and experiences, you must choose to be open and respectful of mine as well.
More Quotes from Elijah Birth
There are always going to be fears in just about everything you do.
So one of the things you always have to be willing to ask yourself is,
"What would you do if you weren't afraid?" [Interview with Monte Magill]
All they needed was each other, and their faith in the Father. The
Spirit testified to me so intensely that this was true. Babies should be
born to their parents. To their family. Into their parents' waiting hands.
Not a doctor's! Not a midwife's! [Misha's birth story]
The problem I see with what is happening today is that when iatrogenic
(doctor caused) situations arise, the couple, in their ignorance, naively
believe that the doctor saved the day, when he/she performs extreme
"heroic" measures to get the baby out, or stop the bleeding, or
resuscitate the baby. The fact that the labor stopped because Mom
was given an epidural, or that the hemorrhage was caused by pulling
out the placenta too soon, or that the baby is blue and not breathing
because too many drugs administered during labor is generally not
considered by most parents today. And so, the cycle of ignorance and
Everything about the medical model of birth inhibited me. Those
crutches kept me from taking full responsibility.........I would not have
torn, for example, if I didn't have someone yelling at me to push when it
clearly was not my baby's time. [Lori, one homebirth with midwives, one
unassisted lotus birth]
|Birth just IS unassisted. I UNchose the medical intervention. I took responsibility for my own part in pregnancy, labor, birth, and parenting.
[from the book Elijah Birth, by Jenny Marie Hatch]
There are loads of books, articles, and various links on Unassisted Childbirth.
Here are links that are very informative and revealing various subjects
concerning unassisted births.
What is UC?
Is it safe?
A Woman's Birthing Instinct
Hormonal Blueprint of Labor
I want to have an unassisted birth, buuuut (and other "what-if" concerns)
You Are What You Think? Painless Birth and Overcoming Fear
Medication and Birth
Delayed cord cutting
How to cut the umbilical cord (if you are not having a lotus birth):
How do I get a birth certificate?
Group-B-Strep (GBS) positive?
GBS Treatment Plan
OBs playing God?
UC birth stories
The UC boards at MDC
What is Unassisted Childbirth (UC)?
Unassisted childbirth is not emergency birth. It is the mother's plan to have labor and birth experience
without the aid of a medical or birth professional.
Some women choose to birth completely alone, but the majority of mothers-to-be choose to labor with her
husband by her side. It is a natural, spiritual, and emotional experience for both husband and wife. A
woman may choose to have her children around her as she labors, or even family and friends, but more
often, would prefer to be left with her husband, or by herself, in this incredibly intimate experience.
In an unassisted childbirth no one acts as a midwife. Instead, the birthing woman herself determines
the course of her labor. Partners or friends may participate to varying degrees, but no one instructs
the woman as to how to give birth, when to push, what position to be in, etc. Occasionally suggestions
may be offered but it is assumed that the woman giving birth is the true expert on her own body.
[Laura Shanley, Unassistedchildbirth.com]
Is it Legal?
Isn't it a bit nutty that so many people are pro-abortion, but the idea of birthing a baby alone seems
irresponsible? A woman has the right to kill her child, so she most definitely has the right to give birth, alone.
We do not need people to help us pee and poop. We do not need medical professionals to guide us
through digesting food. Pregnancy, labor, and birth are biological functions. It's natural. It's a process
formed by God.
25 weeks pregnant
Why Have We Chosen to Have an Unassisted Birth?
I often get questioned as to why I plan on having an unassisted childbirth, and what exactly it is. I have
friends who have had successful unassisted births and a few who are aiming for unassisted births.
Unassisted birth isn't a new trend. God made our bodies to give birth. He has installed all the tools we
need within us to do this successfully on our own. My body knows how to digest food and dispose of it on its
own. It does not require assistance. It does not need me, or anyone else for that matter, instructing it on
how to go about doing so. No one needed to inform my husband's sperm to swim like crazy and fertilize my
egg. It knows what to do. It knows how to do it..... obviously, since I'm pregnant.
Our bodies have such amazing abilities. It has always been my belief, a belief I inherited from my mother
that proves to be true, that we depend too much on medications and doctors to "fix" us, rather than relying on
the natural remedies God has sprung up from the ground. I am by no means saying medications and
doctors are useless, far from it, but too often we want the "quick fix", instead of altering our diets, our
lifestyles, and our thinking to become healthier, heartier beings.
Think of all the amazing things your body does on a daily basis... and without anyone's guidance! Our blood
pumps through us, our body fights disease and infection, we breathe without consciously telling ourselves
to inhale and exhale. Our body is able to heal the scrapes and scratches, mend the tears and gashes. So
many things work together to make our bodies function- and yet, we don't even realize it. So, with all of this,
why do we believe we cannot birth a child without assistance?
While some women prefer to birth completely alone, it is my desire, and the desire of many UCers, to labor
and birth with their husband by their side. It has been said, the family that UCs together, stays together. Why
is this? Ask anyone who has experienced a natural homebirth where the woman is confident in the ability of
her body to birth a baby, and they will tell you. It's spiritual. It's intimate. It's amazing.
My husband was not particularly involved with my first labor and birth. He held one of my hands (my dad held
the other), but it was my parents who did all of the encouraging, who gave all of the support. It was my
parents who blocked the nurses, set up a chain of protection around me, and fought to give me the natural
birth I wanted.
Unfortunately, because I was uninformed, because I was in an uncomfortable environment, because I
labored mostly on my back.... (I had done some pushing squatting, but by then it was too late).. my lovely
daughter lodged her head in my pelvis. I received a "saddleblock" (a shot of painkiller which numbs the
parts of the body that would touch a saddle), and my little girl was retrieved with forceps.
I had gone 12 hours without any food, except for a couple slices of pickle, a cracker my mom had snuck into
the room, and a rainbow popcicle. How in the world did they expect me to successfully give birth if I
wasn't successfully nourished? It is no wonder that by the time I was in very, extremely active "here she
comes" labor, that I had absolutely no energy to do anything.
Hubby became more involved with my second birth, and for that I am thankful. However, he was a bit
irritating to me and the family in the last couple weeks of my pregnancy, because he was sick of the "is this
labor?" false alarms. The ups and downs were too much for him. He'd get excited, thinking this was it, and
then we'd realize the time had not yet come.
My husband is just as eager and excited to have an unassisted homebirth as I am. He knows that neither of
us will have to panic about being prepared, bags being packed, kids having a place to go before we head off
to the birthcenter (as we had previously opted to do). He knows that neither of us will worry about whether
it's "the real thing", whether I'm really in labor or not.
He won't have to fight with midwives, doctors, or nurses for a place by my side. He won't have to listen to
anyone telling me to push, push, push.. even when I'm clearly not ready to push, push, push.
Both of us will be in a comfortable, familiar environment. There will be no rush. No hurry to birth the baby,
cut the cord, clean him off. When he is born, I can hold him right away, cord still connected. I can
breastfeed him within seconds or minutes of his birth. There will be no one to snatch him away from me,
measure him, weigh him, poke and prod him.
We can patiently wait for the placenta to be birthed. No tugging or pulling for an unnatural, premature
detachment (which leads to hemorrhage). It's almost as if time stands still in this process. Time is not
So, in review, several things that are important to me:
1. Time not being a factor. Laboring and giving birth in my body's own time, not anyone else's.
2. Being able to nourish my body throughout labor in order to gain strength and withstand any pain.
(Contractions themselves are not that painful. However, when those muscles become exhausted, it
becomes a painful chore.)
3. Chosing the position that feels best on my body and in the efforts of birthing a baby, and especially in
avoiding vaginal/perineal tears.
4. Having a waterbirth, not only for the comfort and ease factor on my own body, but for the baby's softer and
less startling transition into this world.
5. Having my husband by my side, experiencing the beauty and ease of childbirth as it was meant to be, and
strengthening the bond of our relationship.
6. Being able to lose myself in my own body and the experience, and trusting the capabilities of my body.
7. Having a less painful and less exhausting labor and birth, and likely a shorter labor and birth as well.
8. Being able to collapse into my own bed with my newborn instead of being transferred to another hospital
9. Not having my experience controlled by anyone, even myself, but allowing it to flow naturally.
10. And of course, the HIGH of giving birth, naturally, with all of my body's chemicals acting and reacting as
Now, these are just a few of the MANY reasons why I have decided on an unassisted, unhindered,
intervention-free natural birth. If I wrote everything in detail, I'd have a novel.
If you're worried about us, or the baby, I urge you to do exactly what we have done. Pray about it. This is a
decision that we have not taken lightly. It's a decision we have gone to God with. It is something He moved
us toward, and something that we trust Him with. While it's called Unassisted Childbirth, it's not completely
unassisted. I have The Great Physician on my side. I have my Lord God.
He designed my body. He designed my womb. He designed birth.
I know He can magnificently direct our labor and birth experience into a beautiful symphony.