Natural Birth After Cesarean (VBAC)
Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC) has become a very important
because the U.S.’s cesarean rate has risen to over 31%. For most
women, VBAC is as safe or safer than repeat surgical birth, but it can
be hard to access. MotherRoot Midwifery fully supports a woman’s
right to access all her options in birth, and to make a fully informed
decision about what kind of birth is right for her. We
believe in a woman’s right to give birth surrounded by people who have
faith in her body.
Deciding to have a VBAC with MotherRoot Midwifery involves an individualized counseling session/meeting to discuss the risks and benefits of VBAC and of repeat surgical birth, as well as any individual factors and concerns. In my experience as a midwife, VBAC women are not high risk, and I fully expect VBAC mothers to have normal pregnancies and natural births. Depending on timing and circumstances, I may be available to travel to attend VBACs-please ask.
I want to note that every once in a while, cesarean birth is necessary and life-saving, and there is a sincere lack of information about birth in this culture. Hindsight is always 20/20 and I believe that all women do the best they can with the information they have, and do what they think is best for their babies. That said, our 31% national cesarean rate is awful public health, and conveys a general cultural disregard for women’s bodies, in my opinion. The World Health Organization recommends a cesarean rate of no more than 15%, because a cesarean is major surgery, with significant risk. We are all too eager to cut into women, which I think is tied to a general fear of birth, and women’s power to bring forth life. Too many cesareans happen because they are profitable, because someone is impatient, because an insurance company mandated it, and because no one ever told women that we are made to get through the hard work of labor and we have lost the art of trusting and supporting birth. I wish we could limit ourselves to the life-saving cesareans.
As you can see, I am passionate about this issue. I love attending VBACs. It’s very important to me that this option remain open to women.
International Cesarean Awareness network's video about Cephalopelvis Disproportion, or CPD, a common "cause" of cesarean birth.
Silent Knife and Open Season, by Nancy Wainer Cohen
Lois Freedman, counselor specializing in birth and VBAC
Nechama Wildanah, CPM