Birthing women are not children, they are not 5 years old or 10 or 15, and if they are teenagers, they are at this point in time transitioning very rapidly into womanhood.
This is not a good girl either – she is a feisty child with her own mind and her own feelings. She would not accept mistreatment without complaint, she knows she deserves respect. She demands to be spoken to kindly, with love, as is her right, as is yours.
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The language used around childbirth never ceases to astound me. A 40 year old mother of 3 birthing her fourth is not a “good girl” to lie back and accept a pat on the head for undergoing a painful and unnecessary procedure, she is an adult, a mother, a worker, a carer, a daughter, an auntie, a wife, a parent, a single woman, a home owner, a home keeper and she is allowed to say “NO” and not to feel reprimanded for it.
Good Girl is a patronising and demeaning term and puts us into a childlike state with our care providers in a position of authority, in infantilises us, encouraging us to be compliant and complicit, to do what we are told and accept approval, rather than questioning vocally and loudly.
If you have a life, birth or other story you will like to share, please contact me HERE.
I see women, women who are brave, who are strong, who are conquering their fear and opening their bodies to meet their babies, dismissed out of hand with these well meant, but inappropriate words. If we want to see change around birth then these words need to be challenged and changed and replaced with meaningful words, empowering words that show their belief in us, enabling the female power that is absolutely at its highest point as new life emerges from us into the world, in whatever way we birth.
Birthing QUEEN, awesome, powerful, amazing, beautiful, strong, wonderful, these are words I use around birth. When we start to use words that respect the woman and her birth then she is able to reclaim her primal power and own herself.
Inspired by all my wonderful clients and the birthing women I support in many ways.
Samantha Gadsden walks with women on their life’s journeys. She is an experienced Doula, based close to Cardiff in South Wales, mother to 4 children and wife to Eddie, more information can be found on her facebook page, Samantha Gadsden Doula and her website, Caerphilly Doula.
If you are interested in writing a guest blog or sharing a life or birth story please feel free to contact her HERE.
“Your Journey, Your Body, Your Baby, Your Birth“