Many people who don’t understand (have probably never really taken the time to understand) will label hypnobirthing as just a ‘load of poo’. Well if I’m honest they may not be quite so rude about it, but the title leads me very nicely into one of my favourite subjects when talking about birth, and that is ‘poo’!
Maybe not quite in the way you might think so let me explain.
There are some lovely analogies which link poo and birth, which adds a touch of amusement to the subject, and even the odd laugh (another one of my favourite things)
Here are my two favourites.
Are we pushing too hard?
If I had to pinpoint one element of hypnobirthing that midwives have the most difficulty getting their heads around it is ‘pushing’ or to be more specific the lack of ‘pushing’. Put very simply we don’t need it. We have a natural expulsive reflex that will gently nudge the baby down and out. Forced pushing actually closes the sphincters ahead of the baby and slows its descent, not to mention the immense stress it put on both mum and baby. Trainee midwives are in fact taught this but many midwives are still telling hypnobirthing mums that it isn’t okay to ‘hum’ their babies down (as taught in The Wise Hippo Birthing Programme).
I’ve often wondered at this and I think it maybe the perceived lack of activity that they are seeing. When a woman is pushing it looks like she is doing something but we actually have no idea what difference this is making on the inside (well not until the baby makes an appearance anyway). The opposite can be said of a mum who is responding to her natural birthing instincts.
And here is my link to poo, because when we are on the loo having a poo our body is working in a very similar way to when it is birthing, ie it is using the natural expulsive reflex.
But there is a big difference (apart from the obvious of course)! When it comes to having a poo you don’t think to yourself, “do you know at some point today I’m going to want to poo so I’ll go and sit on the loo for the next few hours and push with all my might until one comes out”. Of course you don’t. At some point you get a sensation that you are going to poo, you go and relax on the loo and simply wait for your poo to make its way down.
In fact for anyone who has experienced constipation you will know that you can push with all of your might but if the body is not ready to let it go then pushing will have no effect. Interestingly though humming will.
Failure to progress
Another link to poo that someone shared with me recently was to imagine trying to have a poo with a load of people coming into the room, watching you, monitoring you, putting on their gloves in readiness to inspect what is going on. I somehow don’t think anyone will be pooing any time soon with all that going on around them.
This will make you smile but sadly this is how many women are expected to birth.
And finally coming back to me enjoying a bit of fun, please take a look at the picture in this post and leave a comment below if you think you know what I am holding. 😉