We hear the stories frequently. The Midwife-Gone-Medical or the Doula-Acting-Renegade. They exist as platforms for the need for well-defined scopes of practice. But it’s not often we get to put a face or humanity behind the stories. They exist as pure propaganda, Allegorical creatures conjured for the greater good, our own stay-in-line benefit. The Person […]
The bloody scenes of women are always suspect. Our insides, the things our bodies expel – the mucous, the shedding, the clots and clumps of uterine lining and pre-formed babies. We must keep it neat. We must follow the rules. ………………………. “I can’t find you. For three days you’re consumed…. I don’t know where you […]
I’m excited to offer this introductory conversation into “Activism in the Birth Room” with Aimee Brill of Doula Trainings International. As Aimee and I started brainstorming about how to be sure to package this content in just the right way, we found that there are really several parts to this discussion, all of which deserve their […]
I’ve never understood why being Pro-Woman is a leftist value and being Pro-Parent is a rightist value. Why, in the pro-choice conversation are women abandoned by the feminist movement once they become parents? Why are women the most invested people in their own bodies and in their fetuses, but not trusted as invested caretakers once […]
Last week, on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, I held a rally / memorial in my community in support of women’s rights to full bodily autonomy and choice. A friend and clergy member, Jill Terwilliger, wrote a truly beautiful prayer for the event. Jill feels especially called in her work to support feminist and […]
The statistical disparity is telling. Birthing folks are not offered support for their choices. Forced cesareans are the extreme examples of the brutal birth culture of slapping women around until they mouse-up or shut up or say, “yes, sir.” But there are countless other ways birthing people endure harsh treatment, from forced vaginal exams to forced separation from their babies to everything in between. One woman’s gruesome, filmed, forced episiotomy from last year highlights this rampant culture of mental abuse and hospital-sanctioned rape. She’s having trouble finding a lawyer to take her case – even with the damning footage. Because the baby is okay. And apparently slicing a woman’s vagina twelve times like she’s a swath of fabric on the counter at JoAnn’s isn’t a mutilating enough injury. What does this say about the established value of women in the judicial system? Did we ever actually come off the shelf as baby-making containers?