GUEST POST: By Kat Stremlau, Mom
Carelful, you may be talking about the mom next to you!
I’ve seen it firsthand. The discreetly dropped shoulders, the slightly downcast eyes…this is the look of a woman who’s had a C-section, surrounded by those that haven’t.
It’s strange that this topic comes up so much around Woodinville. Perhaps it’s because I surround myself with moms and babes all day and I tend to hear it all: breastfeeding, diapering, discipline, birth options, all the usual suspects. But for some reason, the C-section discussion is the one that leads to hurt feelings, dissolved friendships and shame.
Why is this such a touchy subject for moms? Great question. I pondered this to a number of moms over a couple of lattes and came up with some really interesting ideas.
I can’t share my birth story! – The Internet is loaded with blogs, websites and personal pages dedicated to telling birth stories. There are even some about C-sections, but the vast majority of them are written by devastated mothers whose carefully crafted birthplan was ruined by a C-section. Guess what? Sometimes, C-sections are planned, sometimes a mom is just fine with it. And all mothers, despite how their children were born, want to share their stories.
I failed and you are judging me! – I would have a hard time believing this one if I didn’t experience it myself. Yep, I had an elective C-section. I never went into labor and I didn’t even try! There were many reasons I went down that route, but to have to spill them out in defense of a medical decision made between me, my husband and my doctor is not how I want to spend my days.
VBAC, VBAC, VBAC! – So, you’ve had a C-section and you need some support. Maybe you want to talk about the scar or how to care for an infant after major surgery or how to breastfeed without irritating your incision … so you go to the Internet, where all the answers are. And there is not much out there for you, unless you want to discuss how to avoid a C-section in the future. That’s right, C-section support sites are all about how to AVOID them.
I was relieved to discover that I wasn’t the only one who had these feelings. I felt the sense of community I’m trying to foster here in Woodinville. Sadly, I feel like I still have to whisper, and that’s just plain not fair! I’m going to put together an evening for moms who’ve had C-sections, those contemplating them and those who love them. Keep your eye out for that and email me if you want to be on the list!