Misconstruing a Genius

20 10 2011

I was alerted that one of THE best minds in childbirth, Dr. Michel Odent, was being challenged by a certain infamous anti-homebirth doctor. Self-assured was I that she could not possibly intelligently refute Odent, I was shocked to see how right I was. When one cannot debunk someone properly, one must resort to smear! Also, use the word “smear”, because if you say it first, it cannot be used on you. Here’s a sampling of what was said:

Dr. Michel Odent’s claim that childbirth pain is necessary for mother-infant bonding.

Only Odent never says that. What he says is this:

The French expert said: “Oxytocin is the hormone of love, and to give birth without releasing this complex cocktail of love chemicals disturbs the first contact between the mother and the baby…

“It is this hormone flood that enables a woman to fall in love with her newborn and forget the pain of birth.”

And, nowhere does he say pain is necessary for bonding. In fact, he says with the help of Oxytocin, pain is greatly diminished for the mother. Not only does his work and literature include info on Birth and Breastfeeding in relation to Oxytocin, but he also speaks very much on the topic of orgasms. No, indeed, Odent is an Oxytocin champion– he believes in all it does for us. He warns us not to give it up so lightly when biologically, it is there to help us. He is a protector of the process, a facilitator of our easy and best births, and now he is being ridiculed by the type of people who drone on about the nastiness of birthing pools. Yes, Odent is credited with introducing these to the modern laboring woman.

Naturally, tons of idiotic commentators arrived to call him everything from a sexist to a liar. Honey, you don’t know Odent! I think he is far less sexist than the medical professionals telling empowered women they are nothing special for having a natural birth. Michel is not a misogynist– he is a feminist!  So anyway, I had to give my two cents:

You are completely misconstruing what DR. Odent is saying.  

First of all, nothing you have quoted in your attempt to paint him as this lying misogynist states that he feels that PAIN is necessary for bonding. In fact, Odent believes that the “pain” will be eased by the natural release of the Oxytocin, which is part of the function of the hormone.  

Can Pitocin do that? No. Pitocin attempts to mimic Oxytocin, but those with experience can tell you that Pit makes contractions worse, harder, less bearable. Being under the influence of Oxytocin, however, leaves many women feeling almost pain-free, some orgasmic. It IS the love hormone, the relaxation and orgasm hormone. Pitocin and Oxytocin are NOT the same thing, anymore than powdered milk or formula is the same thing as breastmilk.  

Furthermore, as someone who has experienced labor THREE different ways, I can tell you from experience that Odent DID do his wife a favor. I love and trust my husband immensely but felt the need to ask him to leave the room during my last labor. It’s not because he has a penis, but because I desired solitude. AND, I had to wake him, because the poor man was asleep. The woman needs what she needs. The intellect doesn’t have to agree with it, the body DOES. It doesn’t mean anything bad about the husband, or the marital relationship, just as you giving birth via C-section does not mean you don’t love your baby.  

That’s right– neither Odent nor I are saying that artificially-had births equate to parents NOT loving their children. There are many factors to bonding. Oxytocin is ONE, and it’s a very primal and primary one. If you think we are saying adoptive parents do not love or bond, or C section moms do not love or bond, you are hearing what you want to hear.  

What we ARE saying is that Oxytocin has an amazing, multi-purpose effect– on labor, the birth, mother, baby, and breastfeeding– and women who choose not to reap its benefits are missing out on something special. Those who have experienced it have described it as THE greatest natural high a woman will experience in her lifetime.  

You can call Dr. Odent’s theories ridiculous and false, if you feel so defensive about them in your personal lives. Maybe his “theories” (based on mammalian science, accepted and understood as TRUE) offend you because they didn’t play a part in your stories and this threatens you somehow as a woman. But, for me? I didn’t understand what had happened to me and my other labors until I started reading geniuses like Odent.Then it all made sense to me. I finally “got it”. Before, maybe I would have blown it off like you and said it was not true. But yeah, he’s just totally in a fantasy world?  

Whatever. He’s one of the only true scientists in the world of childbirth. So many others, indoctrinated by their education, worship at the altar of technology and drugs as though they can do no wrong. At least Odent honors the woman and her needs above any touting of “advancement” our backwards society makes. He truly wants what is best for us, and he doesn’t have an agenda. There are no lobbyists, no drug companies, no ego-driven wars he is in bed with. It is just a man and the science he has observed. He is a great mind… so naturally, he is met with aggressive opposition.  

The only smearing I see is people here of Odent. I can’t figure out if you simply do not understand him, or if you are intentionally trying to miscategorize him to the masses.

… which, of course, immediately fell on deaf ears, as he was called not only totally wrong but a “classy” guy for leaving his wife alone during her labor. Before you judge this guy, random RNs, birthy mom types, and other MDs, please read more about this man and his career, works, and genius. He IS a classy guy. For starters, he doesn’t own any hate sites to tell non-Oxytocin-enjoying moms where to go and attack those who have experienced this amazing part of the circle of life. He isn’t part of the REAL smear campaign, to undermine the real wants and real experiences of real women, and reduce common sense, observations, and real life events to mere mythology.

Nope. He’s one of the good guys.

PS– By popular demand, here are some links worth checking out on the idiosyncrasies and differences between Oxytocin and Pitocin (besides just “brand name”).

Pit of Despair — The difference has to do with the blood-brain barrier. Oxytocin is produced by the brain and has a direct effect on brain function. But when Pitocin is introduced into the bloodstream, it does not affect the brain.

Oxytocin: The Great Facilitator of Life — In light of the prominent role in parturition and essential role in lactation, we are drawn to the view that Oxt serves the continued propagation of a species.

Thanks, Mom!— Time Magazine article:  It also helps facilitate bonding between mothers and newborns.

A relationship between oxytocin and anxiety of romatic attachment –That oxytocin and anxiety may be linked in some way in the modulation of social bonding is supported also by scattered data showing that a moderate level of stress seems to promote pair bonding in different species, including human beings [40].

“Love Hormone” Promotes Bonding — Obviously we think we know a lot about it, but should hesitate to flat out reject what little we already know (that oxytocin correlates with bonding). We are only just starting to learn how it affects us, and to blanketed deny a connection seems arrogant.

“The hormone, also known by its trade name, Pitocin, has been used for years to induce labor and promote lactation in women.  But its effects on the brain are just beginning to be understood.”

Oxytocin is a brain chemical associated with pair bonding, including mother-infant and male-female bonds, increased paternal involvement with children, and monogamy in certain rodents, according to Kai MacDonald, M.D., assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at UCSD.”


Actions

Information

36 responses

21 10 2011
Confused

What the fuck is an artificial birth? You do realize you sound insane?

21 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Dear Confused,

I never said an “artificial birth”. I said an “artificially-had” birth. This is opposed to a naturally-had birth, with all the real Oxytocin and love hormones.

You know, NATURAL birth, that you and Dr. Amy are all so opposed to, a la your group “Fed up with natural birth”. If you’re fed up with “natural” birth, why the fuck would you take issue with “artificial” birth, anyway? Natural as opposed to what? Get real.

You do realize you sound high strung? Learn to read before you come to battle me. Don’t be a coward and share your real name and e-mail address, too. If you’re so smart, share your knowledge with the class and stand behind your word.

Come visit my Facebook page today to be schooled on the actualities behind Pitocin vs. Oxytocin. Ciao!

22 10 2011
Marlo

Chemistry 101: If things are the same at the molecular level, then they are *actually* the same. Pitocin=oxytocin. Please stop lying to women and saying they’re chemically different. Furthermore, childbirth pain is no different than any other sort of pain. It’s interpreted by the very same neurons and processed in the very same part of the brain. Pain is pain. Say you get shot or break a bone. Your body releases adrenaline, oxytocin, and a variety of endorphins to help you cope and not die from shock. Doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt like a sonofabitch. Yes, prolonged severe pain can be a life-threatening situation because it depletes your body’s reserves. That people continue to assert either expressly or implicitly that pain from childbirth is somehow “different” from “other” pain does nothing but set mothers up to feel like failures when they find out the truth. It hurts. There’s no need to feel the pain; it does nothing for you. Now, for people who really think they need to feel the pain, let’s tell them the truth that it’s in no way “healthier” or “safer.” It’s for either bragging rights, or for those rare people who for whatever reason can’t physically tolerate forms of real pain relief. If someone *can’t* take advantage of pain relief, I can respect that. If someone purposely *chooses* to feel pain because of some delusional claim that it’s better for you or bragworthy or better for the baby or a rite of passage, I do not respect that. It makes no logical *or* scientific sense to lie to women and put people through needless excruciating pain.

23 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Marlo–

I’ve experienced pain in childbirth. Bad pain. I felt like a failure after this happened to me– twice.

Rather than dwell in my bitterness and think that everyone else was just “lying” to me, I chose to keep moving, and I dove into research to try to figure out why some people could experience such drastically different births than I. This led me to Odent. The more I learned, the more it all made sense. I wanted to find out the origin of my pain, beyond just “ow! Childbirth HURTS!” And especially beyond “those NCBers are lying bitches”. There’s no truth in that. Just bitterness.

So, I’m not lying to women. I’m sharing what I have learned. If you are in a position that makes it hard for you to accept that these are realities, that is your hang up. You may choose to stop asking questions with your reality. I question reality, or reality as we “know” it. This is how you and I are different.

It DOES hurt. It’s hurts to hear things that seem contrary to one singular experience. Then this miraculous thing happens… you find that there is an explanation for your experience, and the next woman’s, and the next woman’s. So, I would ask YOU (without expectation) to stop keeping people bitter. I want to move people out of their pain, and you want to keep them in it, and keep a divide between women. I can stay in my evil-ncber box, and you can dwell in the I’m-the-only-one-who-loves-facts box? What for? There’s a better answer for all of us, and to remain there is cruel and unnecessary.

There is another answer in which your experience, my experience, and orgasmic birth all make sense. There IS a harmony, but you have to be willing to open your mind to understand these things.

I am editing this post to put up several links about the differences between Oxytocin and Pitocin. Enjoy.

23 10 2011
mommawrench

Actually she did NOT say that pitocin and oxytocin are two different things. She said that pitocin and oxytocin act differently in the brains of laboring and birthing mothers because of the blood-brain barrier. Oxytocin is produced WITHIN the brain and is therefore not inhibited by the blood-brain barrier; only natural oxytocin is capable of causing the brain to release the endorphines necessary for pain management and reduction.

Is labor painful? Of course! But pain is not the only factor; the reason MOST women report more pain with pitocin-induced contractions rather than oxytocin-induced contractions has nothing to do with the intensity of the contractions (in fact, pitocin contractions, under reasonably-managed care, are often less intense than natural oxytocin contractions). Rather, pitocin creates the PERCEPTION of more painful contractions by not producing the same pain-cancelling hormones as oxytocin.

And having been through 17 hours of completely unmedicated labor, followed by a crash c-section, I object very strongly to the term “excruciating” being applied to labor. My recovery was certainly excruciating. The toes I’ve broken in gymnastics, the hours of PT in basic training, I’d call that excruciating. Transition was close to that level of pain, but in degree only — not in kind. Trying to scare women into medical intervention by erroneously comparing labor to a broken femur IS lying. Femurs don’t just up and break on their own. It hurts when they break because they’re not supposed to. Labor is SUPPOSED to happen to the female body, barring some kind of physical abnormality. The brain has developed a wonderful cascade of reactions to mitigate the pain associated with it that, at the chemical level, work even more efficiently than epidural — which can only mask pain, not offset it or mitigate it in the brain. it’s an anesthetic, not an analgesic.

No one is claiming that pain is necessary as a rite of passage. That’s YOUR bias-based interpretation. What we are saying is that a full arsenal of responsible pain-management necessarily must include options other than epidural or suffering, INCLUDING allowing women to labor naturally, producing their own natural oxytocin as the catalyst for natural pain relief, avoiding pitocin, and training labor attendants in alternative pain management skills. Simply reaching for the paralytics right off the bat is not only medically irresponsible, in most cases, it’s unnecessary and FAR more fear-based than anything you accuse NCBers of.

23 10 2011
mommawrench

And just to be clear: Whether or not the pain of childbirth is beneficial is NOT the issue. The issue is, Does modern medical intervention to mitigate that pain contribute to a cascade of interventions that can lead to more dangerous intervention being needed? and, if so, do those risks outweigh the relatively minor risks of natural childbirth?

Way to twist the argument, though — kind of impressive, really. It’s almost like Dr Amy herself is right here with us.

24 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Mommawrench… I really agreed with your first paragraph. Your last thought, however, threw me– I wasn’t really sure who it was geared towards. It didn’t make sense towards me, so I could only assume you were speaking to a previous commenter.

Edit: Mommawrench– the comments I got appeared out of synch for me. Now seeing them in context, I totally get you! 🙂 And, you’re so very right. Thank you for saying it so well.

27 10 2011
fiona

“There’s no need to feel the pain; it does nothing for you. Now, for people who really think they need to feel the pain, let’s tell them the truth that it’s in no way “healthier” or “safer.” It’s for either bragging rights, or for those rare people who for whatever reason can’t physically tolerate forms of real pain relief.”

My natural births were neither for “bragging rights” nor for physical intolerances to analgesia. I did not use pain relief simply because I did not need to, the pain I felt during labour and birth was bearable to me and I had no reason to increase the risks of childbirth by using (for me, unnecessary) analgesics. Yes, labour hurt; yes, I experienced pain; but, I found the pain during contractions useful to help me work with my body to push my baby out. That’s just how it was for me, not because I wanted to say “I did it med free nyah nyah nyah” but because it is how I work, how MY body and MY mind works. I don’t presume to tell other women why they utilise pain relief if they choose to or feel they want/need it and I sure as hell find it offensive when another woman presumes to tell me why I did something or why my choice is only acceptable if it is because I had no choice (eg: your example of medical contraindication to analgesia).

Your attitude toward natural childbirth and your generalisation of why women choose unmedicated births appears simplistic at best and in my opinion contributes to the misinformation surrounding labour and birth options every bit as much as the “childbirth pain is different to regular pain” ideology that you are attempting to attack. Yes, pain IS pain. The very first thing I learnt in nursing school when it came to administering analgesia is that pain is subjective, experienced differently by every individual and managed/coped with differently by every individual. The reasons that women may choose unmedicated births are very likely as different and varied as the individual women doing the choosing. Assigning their reasons to two camps of ‘braggers’ or ‘contraindicated’ is as illogical as lying to women that childbirth is painless.

23 10 2011
The Skeptical Mother

Marlo,
You should really stop projecting so much.
We all are well aware that you attempted to homebirth and
to go without the drugs yourself. Just because YOU chose
to go without drugs for “bragging rights” ( which must have been
your reason- why else do you keep saying this?) does not
mean most women do.
You have been misled and lied to. I know that you feel you have
been misled and lied to by “NCB advocates” but you are also being
misled and lied to by Amy Tuteur. She has taken advantage of you
because you are an easy target. You are extremely angry, bitter
and resentful because of your birth experience.
And you know what? I understand that. But instead of lashing
out at everyone around you, why don’t find ways to let go
of some of this anger you are carrying around?
Everything I have ever seen you write is so nasty and
filled with so much animosity, I can’t imagine it
being very healthy for you.
You do not know the reasons why women choose homebirth
or choose to go med free because I have not seen you name
one reason that is actually in line with why women are making
these choices.
I think you are totally unaware that you are projecting your
own feelings on everyone else… many women actually
do not feel crazy levels of pain during childbirth.
As implausible as that might sound to you, it is true.

23 10 2011
Natashia Gruber

I am so happy to see that more and more families are choosing to raise their children naturally. As adults we need to be setting the example for what is a healthy lifestyle so if our children see us doing it they will pick it up. It feels good to know my child will have the best life she can because of my families choices:) Also by following the idea of attached parenting my daughter is happier and easier to calm when upset. She is never not with me.

24 10 2011
danette k ottosen

I have had one epidural free birth and I HATED it. I choose the epidural free birth on purpose. It hurt like hell and it seemed everyone said oh having a epidural free birth is awesome, you can bond with your baby sooner you will even have a natural high. Nope none of that happened. The pain was so painful it just sucked. The pain controlled me. I was not in control and I hated it. Not only that but I had a headache for 3 days after I had him.

My last birth I received an epidural it was an awesome birth. I was in control, I was happy I was able to bonded with my baby more after he was born because I was not so tired. Not only that but I had a natural high after he was born and guess what I was induced because had gestational diabetes. It was an awesome birth. I love it.

24 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

I have had an epidural birth, too. When you are already in the hospital and you’ve thrown physiological birth out the window, it is the most merciful thing you can do for yourself– to give yourself the epidural. Without that, the pain can be quite maddening.

However, that’s in hospital. If you allow yourself the chance for a truly physiological birth, the body responds differently. The pain is far less intense. This is what I’ve learned from Odent, my own body, and my experiences.

25 10 2011
mommawrench

See, I wanted to avoid an epidural because my husband gets epidural steroid injections for his degenerative disc disease, and frequently gets epidural headaches that last for weeks afterwards. He told me to not get an epidural unless I absolutely felt like I might die without one because the headaches they cause him are so extreme.

Just goes to show how individual peoples’ experiences are!

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

I remember I tried not to get the epidural with #1, because I knew the risks, but I literally felt like I WAS dying.

I do advise against it, if you can stand it. However, if it’s unbearable, I encourage women to get it. We need to have mercy and be forgiving of each other, you know?

I love your input, btw. Thanks for participating here. ❤

24 10 2011
Marlo

“I want to move people out of their pain, and you want to keep them in it, and keep a divide between women. I can stay in my evil-ncber box, and you can dwell in the I’m-the-only-one-who-loves-facts box? What for? There’s a better answer for all of us, and to remain there is cruel and unnecessary. ”

It’s a little presumptuous to say I want to keep people in their pain, and you’re trying to move people out of it. Denying the physiological reality of childbirth and trying to convince people that if they somehow did it right or believed in the right way that it could be painless or “orgasmic” (not only is that a myth, but it’s also creepy… getting off from your kid?). Denying the unpredictable and often physically painful (note that I didn’t say *emotionally* or *mentally*) of childbirth does no one any favors. Neither does continuing to insist that there is a difference between pitocin and oxytocin. I’m not trying to tell you everybody needs to be augmented with pitocin. But for people who do, they don’t need to hear lies from people like you telling them that it’s dangerous because it’s “different” than their own body’s oxytocin. Same molecule, same thing. It’s not magic. Childbirth is not magic. It’s a physiological, involuntary process that is awesome and unpredictable. An open mind doesn’t mean accepting magical thinking just because an internet ideologue thinks you should. An open mind doesn’t mean denying physical realities just because one discredited old misogynist thinks you should. When Odent gives birth himself, I’ll consider listening to the guy. When you recognize basics of chemistry and realize that men will *never* understand birth, I’ll consider listening to you. Want to lend credence to your philosophy? Find me some women OBGYNs who are down with it & have them guest post.

24 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Marlo, that comment is all kinds of fucked up that I must respond, item by item.

“It’s a little presumptuous to say I want to keep people in their pain, and you’re trying to move people out of it.”

1. Is it presumptuous, of me, to you? Well let’s see. I think you want to KEEP women in pain because you get mad every time someone claims they can have a pain-free experience WITHOUT all the adverse effects of drugs and intervention. I think you want to KEEP women in pain because you attack them every time they talk about pain-free and orgasmic NCB, call them liars even if it was THEIR own experience, and keep a divide between women where you state NCB-experienced truths to be false and the only reality to be your own. THAT keeps people in pain. You are keeping yourSELF in pain, for god’s sake. You are not advocating people healing, people finding peace, or people growing and learning. ALL you do promotes keeping people in pain and misery, even in just the warring with each other. You don’t seek unity, you seek destruction. Presumption? No, observation.

2. I’m being presumptuous to say that I’m trying to move people out of pain? What, I’m being presumptuous against myself, and my own intentions? Do you even know what presumptuous means?

“Denying the physiological reality of childbirth and trying to convince people that if they somehow did it right or believed in the right way that it could be painless or “orgasmic” (not only is that a myth, but it’s also creepy… getting off from your kid?). ”

1. Denying the physiological reality of childbirth? Seriously? That’s ALL I’ve been talking about! Again, do you even know what words MEAN? Please, look up physiological childbirth. Google it or something. See what comes up. Then, pick your chin up off the floor and finish reading these comments, because it gets better. The hospital does not honor physiological childbirth– the hospital manipulates childbirth. I am an advocate of physiological childbirth, and so is Odent. Dr. Amy has never witnessed a physiological childbirth, and I can say that with a fair amount of certainty, because if she did it would change her whole perspective on and understanding of what birth is. Few people ever get to witness one. It’s everything you’re against. So, don’t throw buzz words around just to sound smart. Physiology is the opposite of what you mean.

2, You reek of the bitterness I had after my “failed” natural births. Birth CAN be pain free, and CAN be orgasmic, but I thought after my bad events that it sounded like a myth, too. However, I wasn’t willing to disregard in their entirety the experiences of all others. Are thousands of people really lying about their experiences? What for? Because even if they are believers in natural childbirth, they are not all part of an NCB movement. Some of them do it totally on their own, not a part of any of these silly online communities, and make the discovery on their own. Are they liars, too? ‘Cause if it didn’t happen to you, it isn’t real, right?

3. Orgasmic birth MAY seem creepy, but that isn’t for you or I to judge. If you’re only interested in shaming people, there you go just perpetuating pain again. However, I can assure you that “getting off on/with your kid” is not at all how the experience is perceived.

“Denying the unpredictable and often physically painful (note that I didn’t say *emotionally* or *mentally*) of childbirth does no one any favors. ”

You are being so fucking dense. I do not deny physical pain. I’ve admitted to my own! Someone else here, I think it was Mommawrench, took issue with the use of “excruciating” to apply to childbirth. Well, I’m a witness to one of the most horrific days of my life– my first unmedicated birth. It WAS excruciating. However, the story doesn’t end there. I will not fear monger like you and tell all women that they WILL experience pain in childbirth, because it doesn’t HAVE to be excruciating, and I recognize that now. I am not so obtuse as to believe that my experience is all that exists. If it were, people would stop having kids. You see, I believe people when they tell me they had little to no pain. I believe people who’ve had orgasms, whether that’s creepy to you or not. Why? Because after I demanded from myself answers and the truth, I learned the process of labor and the physiology in its various stages, and it all made sense to me why I would feel how I felt and the next women could feel different. I seek to liberate women from the myths, and from the pain. They MAY feel physical pain, but, if they are prepared, they will cope well or even transcend pain in their births. This is threatening to you, why? Because you felt incapable, inadequate? Join the club! And then, instead of staying there and remaining a hater, you could be like me and grow from your experiences, because what I’m talking about is universal. Everyone belongs. Your ideas are bigoted and exclusive. Yet you all dare to call Odent the sexist?

“Neither does continuing to insist that there is a difference between pitocin and oxytocin. ”

See the links, girlfriend.

“I’m not trying to tell you everybody needs to be augmented with pitocin.”

NO ONE needs to be augmented with Pitocin. But, that’s an argument for another day.

“But for people who do, they don’t need to hear lies from people like you telling them that it’s dangerous because it’s “different” than their own body’s oxytocin. Same molecule, same thing. It’s not magic. Childbirth is not magic.”

1. No lies. You can’t just shout “lies!” when someone says a fact you dislike. An inconvenient truth. And, obviously, if I really believe in it, telling me I’m a liar will have little effect on me other than to think you are delusional.

2. It is different than their own Oxytocin. Read a damn link, please. Even if for nothing else, the body produces the Oxytocin IT finds necessary. Anything extra would be artificial, even if the brain DID recognize it the same way (which it does not– again, see links). To assume the body is hopelessly flawed as to need regular “help” and augmentation is the arrogance of modern medicine.

3. Everything is magic. Ordinary, everyday magic. When you consider the complexity and vastness of our universe, you’d have to be one cold hard bitch to think that the amazement of science isn’t sheer magic. If you stop to contemplate the paradox of the human body being both so intricate and also so simple, its systems, its design, it’s miraculous. If you can’t ponder these things as miracles, if it is all nothing special, no magic, then you are not a fan of science. Do not pose as one. You are a fan of dwelling in your own pain, where you have a very limited universe, where pain in childbirth is the only possible reality. That’s a delusion, and short sightedness, either from being dim-witted, being stuck in your own trauma of the past, or a combination of the two. But, your problems are not everyone’s problems, so quit trying that. You’re projecting again.

“It’s a physiological, involuntary process that is awesome and unpredictable.”

It is, but how would you know? You advocate the eradication of this natural, involuntary, physiological process through the use of augmentation and other drugs. You’re afraid of the unknown. The rest of us are pioneers (maybe of our own bodies, but still… able to look those fears in the face and eliminate them… you still hide behind your veil). Unpredictable is such a scary word, isn’t it?

“An open mind doesn’t mean accepting magical thinking just because an internet ideologue thinks you should.”

I agree. But this is why I came into my own ON my own. Yes, I found answers in the words of others, but they spoke to my own heart and life experiences, so I recognized them as true. I don’t advocate relying on any “ideologue”, whether you refer to me, Odent, or anyone else. I advocate seeking answers and believing in YOURSELF. That is why my mind is open, and your straight denial of other experiences means your mind is closed shut. You’re incapable of seeing the other side.

“An open mind doesn’t mean denying physical realities just because one discredited old misogynist thinks you should. ”

Discredited by whom? Amy? I’m sorry, I don’t accept cynical thinking just because an internet ideologue thinks I should… 😉

“When Odent gives birth himself, I’ll consider listening to the guy.”

I call bullshit. I’ve given birth, and you haven’t considered listening to me. Other women have had pain free and orgasmic birth, and you haven’t considered listening to them. If Odent gave birth himself it would make not ONE bit of difference because you refuse to acknowledge anything outside your own perception of reality (which is warped, btw).

You know, you’re a coward. You could be listening to people give you some revolutionary ideas on overcoming fear and pain, even people who’ve experienced pain like you have, but instead of facing that and asking questions and overcoming, you’d rather sink into the fear and shout “lies!” every time someone shows you a different way. You’re afraid to face your fears, you’d rather believe it’s impossible than to try. You’re entitled to live in your bitterness and fear, but when it starts affecting other people, like you trashing them and calling them things they are not, I then earn the right to call you out as the fucking coward that you are. You are toxic and harmful to human existence. This sounds harsh, but I say this with love, albeit tough love. You’re projecting, you’re afraid, and you’re part of a group of bullies that are fucking cowards. Step into the light when you’re ready. As wrong as I think you are, I do not hate you… not truly. I will gladly welcome you with a hug and open arms. It’s really warm here in the truth… and great to be free of that burden of all that past hatred. Really, it’s very liberating. I’m so glad I didn’t stay at the stage you are in now. It was SO resentful and cold there. You do NOT have to limit yourself to dwelling there… there are other answers, less pain, and more truth. If you’d like more things to make sense and the world to seem less cruel, chaotic, and disorderly, consider joining me sometime.

“When you recognize basics of chemistry and realize that men will *never* understand birth, I’ll consider listening to you.”

Oh please, like YOU understand the basics of chemistry. You only understand chemistry as Dr. Amy explains it, and you stop asking questions there, taking her word for the gospel. Don’t lecture me on understanding chemistry, and again, SEE THOSE DAMN LINKS to understand why Oxytocin and Pitocin have different effects, even IF on a molecular level they are the same.

You know, it’s funny, because I often marvel at how some of the greatest minds on this topic ARE men. It seems a damn shame that with women, they are either are biggest oppressors (that’d be you, and Amy, for example), or they are great voices but only in the touchy-feely sense… say the midwives like Ina May, other maternal and inspirational figures, etc. They have their place, too, and deserve their respect– don’t get me wrong– it’s just that the doctors and scientists with the sterile facts tend to get more respect. It’s kind of ironic that some of the more brilliant scientific minds in the world of birth happen to be male. I guess I chock it up to the fact that we still are in a very patriarchal society, where men of their day and even today get more opportunity to be scientists and doctors. Men biologically by nature are more moved by cold facts, where women are drawn to the nurturing and the maternal, and more open to working with feelings instead of proven data, typically… so even biologically I suppose this makes sense. By sheer numbers, it’s more likely to meet an outspoken man in the field than a woman. In fact, even women who become doctors end up indoctrinated into patriarchal bullshit mores, such as the merciful cutting of an episiotomy, for example. The obstetric model is sexist. I will not shun the men that stand out in opposition to the machines we’ve built around keeping women subservient to and respectful of them. No, I’ll listen to the men, my fellow feminists, and we will tear those systems down, even if only brick by brick.

“Find me some women OBGYNs who are down with it & have them guest post.”

I’ll look into that, but I’m not sure if I’m important enough to get some revolutionary female OB/GYN guest post on a blog by little old me. Good suggestion, though. I’ll aim toward that goal.

2 01 2012
Linda

“Denying the physiological reality of childbirth and trying to convince people that if they somehow did it right or believed in the right way that it could be painless or “orgasmic” (not only is that a myth, but it’s also creepy… getting off from your kid?).”

Birth isn’t going to be naturally painless or orgasmic for everyone, if only they do it “right”. However, there’s no doubt that for most women it’s made to be far more painful than it needs to be, and it’s fantastic that women are talking amongst themselves about how this happens and why, so they can avoid it if possible. Why on earth would anybody in their right mind object to that?

Also, if you’re thinking of “orgasmic” as “being sexually stimulated by your baby”, then you’re really not getting it. Obviously it’s not the same thing as having sex, any more than the baby moving through the vagina is like a penis moving through the vagina, just because they both have contact with the vagina. (Ooh, dirty! Yeah… no.) This idea that it’s perverse for birth to feel good is ridiculous. What about all those women for thousands upon thousands of years who didn’t have the option of medical numbing? They could only avoid being “perverse” if they felt pain? Now, of course, women don’t have to feel pain, so now they get to avoid being “perverse” by simply not feeling anything.

I’ve often though that “orgasmic” was probably not the best word. But even “pleasurable” and “ecstatic” get people clutching at their pearls. Here’s your options women: either in pain or numb. The birth morality police say so.

“Neither does continuing to insist that there is a difference between pitocin and oxytocin.”

The fact that there is no molecular difference is IRRELEVANT. The problem is that oxytocin (either real or artificial) introduced by injection does not cross the blood-brain barrier, but the body does recognize its presence in the body, so that it ceases its own production, including *in the brain*, so that brain-specific effects do not occur, including that having to do with bonding. (It also makes hemorrhage more likely in third stage unless oxytocin is administered then as well.) This been explained over and over. It’s like you’re not reading anything here but your own comments. Which is really rude.

“When Odent gives birth himself, I’ll consider listening to the guy.”

You think what is scientifically true or not is determined by the gender of the person uttering the statement? That’s not rational. It’s just petty.

“When you recognize basics of chemistry and realize that men will *never* understand birth, I’ll consider listening to you.”

What difference does it make whether men understand birth? *Women* understand birth, both from scientific rationality and their own experience. Way more women than men, actually, are saying these things, including scientists and doctors. He just happens to have stated it in an elegant, simple way, which makes him particularly quotable. So you see his name all over the place. But that doesn’t mean he invented the ideas. It doesn’t mean he discovered the science. It doesn’t mean he’s some lone God-man up in the sky dictating beliefs to his brainwashed women-followers. Give me a break.

“Want to lend credence to your philosophy? Find me some women OBGYNs who are down with it & have them guest post.”

A large percentage of women OB/GYNs participate in non-evidence based practices such as routine induction, prone birthing, directed pushing, manually manipulated delivery of the head, episiotomy, immediate cutting of the cord, and separation of mother and baby, and would choose an elective cesarean for themselves. These are the people that you need to tell you it’s okay to believe what’s already been established in the medical literature as scientific fact? Do some reading. I don’t mean at women’s blogs and forums, and I don’t mean Dr. Amy. I mean go read the actual scientific papers and articles. People who care do the research for themselves. Trolls don’t. Which are you?

24 10 2011
The Skeptical Mother

Have I told you lately that I love you, Elizabeth? No, seriously.. goose bumps sister, goose bumps.

24 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

hugs and kisses, Sammy!

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Marlo, I hope you’ll forgive my tough love. I definitely don’t mean to alienate, and I hope you will keep an open mind as I deliver what you’ve asked for.

Please read my new post on Dr. Sarah Buckley, as she adds credence to the respected Dr. Odent and his physiology “theories”. Please, feel free to let Amy in on the secret, as well. I would be curious if she thinks that yet another great doctor is just a quack.

https://theperfectbirth.wordpress.com/2011/10/25/a-woman-mdob-who-believes-in-odent-oxytocin-physiology/

25 10 2011
A Woman MD/OB Who Believes in Odent, Oxytocin, & Physiology? « theperfectbirth

[…] My previous post drew controversy that I would dare contradict Dr. Amy in insisting that Dr. Odent was right about birth physiology, namely that mammalian birth involved the BONDING hormone Oxytocin, which is in fact different from the synthetic variety, best known as Pitocin.  The issue was basically that Odent was supposedly an out-of-touch misogynist for tricking women into believing they were birthing goddesses when they really aren’t, guilting women into undergoing the pain of childbirth. And oh, btw, Oxytocin doesn’t actually bond people and Pitocin does exactly the same things for the body. Right. […]

25 10 2011
Anne Coffee

Elizabeth,
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Taking on that particular woman makes you my hero! The fact that you did is so well is a bonus. I note that in true Dr. Amy follower form, when she couldn’t refute your words, she quit responding. Keep up the good work!

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Anne, thank you so much! Your encouragement helps me keep going, as I realize how many people truly need to hear this. We will not be stopped, nor silenced! Lies masquerading as “science”, as “facts”, cannot fool everyone. Only those who want to be fooled.

25 10 2011
mommawrench

Marlo —

Have you read the study that up to 50% of ALL FDA-approved medications are as effective as placebo? It turns out that what we think about medicine actually matters to how it effects us. That works with lack of medicine, too. If you go into birth expecting it to be scary, painful, unruly, dangerous, and a potential emergency for which immediate medical intervention is necessary, you’re pretty much guaranteed to NOT enjoy the experience.

I can say I genuinely ENJOYED the day I spent in labor. I’m 27-weeks pregnant with #2 now and genuinely looking forward to going through the experience again — even more than the first, because now, I’m not just intellectually prepared, but emotionally and mentally, too. For my first, I relaxed, I prepared our bedroom and the nursery, I put food in the crock pot for my husband, I watched movies, I snuggled my cats. I didn’t expect labor to not be painful (I actually had no idea that the “cramps” was feeling were contractions, till I was 8cm dilated — 12 hours later). I DID expect it to be a positive experience, so it was.

You, clearly, expect birth to be a scary, painful, horrible experience that is physically and mentally bad for women, who must have medical intervention to alleviate the mind-crushing, soul-destroying experience of bringing new life into the outside world. Of COURSE you won’t experience a pleasant labor and birth. You don’t expect to. Ask and you shall receive; don’t, and you won’t. Even if the thousands of experiences of women who report enjoyable, pleasurable, relaxing, even FUN labors are really just “all in their heads,” SO WHAT? If a sugar pill is as effective as more dangerous drugs, do we push the more dangerous drugs anyway because the placebo effect is “all in their heads”?

The brain AND the body are amazing and complex. Why should we wait for science to figure out how they work before we start to believe the women who say they do? THAT’S pretty misogynistic to me. I choose not to believe women are just making it up for shits and giggles simply because my birth, ultimately, resulted in a c-section. Unless you’re a biochemist with a specialty in chemical neurology, why simply assume women are lying? We have no incentive to. I don’t get paid every time a woman avoids an epidural, and I don’t have to pay out of pocket every time they choose a fully medically-managed birth. I doubt Elizabeth does, either.

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Absolutely not. I don’t profit from this. I HAVE written a book, but 99% of what I do is completely just me devoting myself to helping women. If I never sell another book ever, I still care passionately about this issue. Other women like Mommawrench here are just sharing their honest experiences, which are invaluable. I have no incentive to lie to you, and she has no incentive to lie to you. We are not attached to any drug companies, or doctors, we get no kickbacks, no rewards… we are just regular everyday women inspiring hope and fearlessness in other women. You can believe these experiences and believe these good doctors, or you can reject it and walk away. For your own wisdom, I hope that you do not.

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

PS– I am very envious of your birth, Mommawrench. 🙂 It sounds beautiful, and I know you are setting an example to women for what is possible.

25 10 2011
mommawrench

Thanks! — as worried as i am about accomplishing VBAC (my son’s c-section was due to my undiagnosed heart condition, I’m on medication now but still considered high-risk as a result) I’m absolutely adamant about letting him pick his own birthday and labor naturally again, even if it’s determined that I can’t vaginally birth him. I’m VERY grateful for the medical intervention that saved me and my first son. I’m VERY grateful for the medical oversight that’s allowed me to have another healthy pregnancy. I’m also VERY grateful that there are alternatives out there for low-risk women who do not need those interventions or medical oversight and for those like you and others who are willing and able to inform them that there are other choices and that they are NOT wrong/abusive/ignorant/uninformed for making those choices — and neither are they wrong/ignorant/naive/uninformed for choosing a medical birth if they feel it would be better FOR THEM.

It’s the meanies who want a one-size-fits-all birth plan — complete with 38-week induction, hourly vaginal exams, legs up in stirrups and hoochie on display for half a dozen med students — who insult women’s intelligence, not competent male OBs who question the medical establishment.

25 10 2011
25 10 2011
Anne Coffee

“there are alternatives out there for low-risk women who do not need those interventions or medical oversight and for those like you and others who are willing and able to inform them that there are other choices and that they are NOT wrong/abusive/ignorant/uninformed for making those choices — and neither are they wrong/ignorant/naive/uninformed for choosing a medical birth if they feel it would be better FOR THEM.

It’s the meanies who want a one-size-fits-all birth plan — complete with 38-week induction, hourly vaginal exams, legs up in stirrups and hoochie on display for half a dozen med students — who insult women’s intelligence, not competent male OBs who question the medical establishment.”

Very well said. Dr. Amy and her groupies would so much easier to stomach if I could get behind that they truly have the best interest of anyone besides themselves at heart. But the vehemence with which they attack, they manner in which they disagree and the way that they attack unmedicated birth even in the hospital. I can understand not supporting home birth, certainly not choosing it for yourself. What I cannot understand is belittling, shaming, name calling and flat out LYING to put simple natural childbirth down. If you do your research, know the risks and benefits and choose a fully medically managed birth because you truly believe it is what is the best thing for you, your baby and your family, GREAT! I don’t need EVERY mom to choose what I believe is best for most women. I’m here to reach the small corner of the world that I can and support women in whatever they choose. I do take issue with anyone making uninformed choices, just going along with whatever they’re told by a care provider and not fully undertaking the responsibility for all those choices.

25 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

Anne, that’s exactly as I see it, too. They usually play all innocent, too, as if they have no idea how rotten they are… often only admitting to a little “snark”. OR, they defend their nastiness by saying the NCBers and “sanctimommies” started it by judging them and being mean, but you know what? I don’t see any of that. All I see is people discussing their choices, and merely bringing up something you do which they do not is a trigger to provoke them into being nasty. If you even talk about your way of life, they accuse you of acting superior and yada yada yada…. it’s insane. I’m a pretty hardcore UCer, but even people in my personal life who don’t always see eye to eye with me… even the folks who have it within them to be assholes… if THEY saw the Dr. Amy mess? They’d be surprised at how demented these people are. If people who would otherwise agree with you think you’re out of line, that’s saying something.

25 10 2011
Anne Coffee

I’m so glad you’re article led me to your page. I’ve really enjoyed reading your posts. I’m a midwife and didn’t use to support UC, but have since come to see it as the ultimate in personal responsibility and respect your right to chose that, my right to choose attended homebirth and other moms right’s to choose all the interventions. I don’t support anyone not putting a little bit of effort into learning what choices need to be made and the consequences of all of them, because everything we chose in life has a consequence and a risk/benefit. I want to assume that most parents are trying to make all the best choices for themselves and the health and safety of their baby, but when they don’t even know what they are choosing, I have a hard time seeing it.
Private message me if you get a chance. I would like to discuss something with you.

26 10 2011
The Skeptical Mother

Elizabeth- how much do Anne and mommawrench rock?! 🙂
Love all the comments!

26 10 2011
♥♂►Elizabeth, ISOTP Birth◄♀♥

I know. So happy to receive the support. On previous occasions it has felt like me vs. the “trolls”. I’m willing to fight alone, but when these great ladies and yourself come and back me up, it gives me more energy to realize I’m NOT alone.

26 10 2011
Anne Coffee

I think all of you pretty much ROCK too!! So glad to find this blog and “meet” Elizabeth…looking forward to “meeting” the rest of you. Keep up the good work!!

26 11 2011
Sexism and Childbirth Choices « theperfectbirth

[…] Michel Odent has been called or implied sexist by a certain infamous Dr. and anti-NCBers for providing info to empower women through realizing how to give birth naturally and the beauty of it. […]

17 04 2012
From C to UC in 6 Labors: Guest Post From Felicia « theperfectbirth

[…] My third labor was really more emotionally enlightening about my body than anything. I learned that if I set my mind to something, my body could be coaxed into anything. Labor really is mind over matter. With Pitocin induced contractions, but my determination to NOT have any ill effects from anesthesia, I had a successful VBAC. I also learned my body does WAY better at controlling the contractions so I could deal with the rushes. You’ll have doctors, nurses and even some women tell you Pitocin induced contractions are just like natural labor– but they are LYING! […]

Give Your 2 Cents

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: