Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

The Business of Being Born

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All I could thinking while watching this documentary was, “Wow”. The Business of Being Born is a documentary showing the differences in home births and hospital births, and ultimately, in my opinion, proving that home births are better for babies and moms.

Hospitals births are what 99% of mother’s choose to do today; this film left me wondering why that is. Although hospitals are great and they save many lives, they are not always necessary in the process of labor and delivery. As shown in the film, obstetricians are surgeons, they were trained to do high-risk deliveries, and most never even see a normal, natural birth before leaving medical school.  The film did a great job of making delivering babies look like an industry to most obstetricians, like it’s just business. They do almost the same thing to every woman and baby that comes into their hospital. They give them one unnecessary drug, which starts a frenzy of reactions and before they know it, they don’t even know what the nurses are giving them. I strongly believe that if given time, the process of birth will happen naturally and there is no need for pitocin (in most cases). There is also the shocking idea that doctors are persuading woman to have C-sections at certain times because it’s better for their schedule, I believe the highest peaks were said to be at 4 and 10.

As far as home births go, the documentary made me very curious about them. I don’t know anyone that has ever had a home birth, but I had seen some on TV. Midwifery was also something I didn’t know much about.  Midwifery was the only way babies were delivered 100 years ago. Then hospitals came along and everything changed. Woman were strapped to beds and given harmful drugs. Although things in hospitals have changed since then, midwifery still makes more sense to me. The fact that the United States has the second highest infant death rate is shocking. I would have never in my life guessed that. One question proposed in the film was “Is less, more?”. That is, does all the technology found in American hospitals today benefit moms and babies, or is it literally killing them?  To me it’s obvious that there is something to be said for midwifery. Many countries still use midwifes and they lose LESS infants that we do. That right there is proof to me that we are doing something wrong.

I truly enjoyed this documentary. I think it’s really important for women to know all their choices when having a baby. I don’t think that women who choose to have hospital births are wrong or that they are “scarred” or anything, I just think it’s good to know your choices. I wondered after viewing the film if any hospitals employ midwifes. I know it said that many hospitals fired them if they were getting more than 30% of the doctor’s business, but I wasn’t sure because it didn’t talk about it too much . Other than that, I thought the film was great at proving its point and informing the viewer well.

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