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Trauma, Traumatic Birth, and Recovery

Trauma, Traumatic Birth, and Recovery

Trauma, Traumatic Birth, and Recovery
By Amy Meister-Stetson – ImprovingBirth.org’s Trauma Care Coordinator

Hypnobabies can help release prior birth trauma and allow moms to be comfortable, calm and confident throughout their pregnancy and birth.

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Hypnobabies friends at ImprovingBirth.org wrote this informative article about birth trauma, and recovery ~
bigstock Newborn Rough Towels Cleaned up 2364114-2“I looked fine because of the epidural, but I went to a very dark place in my mind, having flashbacks about being victimized in childhood. I was freaking out inside, feeling helpless about keeping my baby safe in that moment, but nobody knew it. It was horrible. Now that I’m pregnant again, I’m terrified of it happening a second time.”

This mother’s experience is far too common, as many women are left with feelings of numbness, grief, shame, guilt, or sadness, and experience nightmares or flashbacks after giving birth. The well-intentioned cheer “at least you have a healthy baby” can feel dismissive and even cruel to the women who feel shattered by their births.

Abuse in the hospital-based birth setting may not seem the same as domestic abuse and violence, but it is no less harmful. Verbal abuse includes behaviors such as threatening, scolding, ridiculing, shaming, coercing, yelling, belittling, lying, manipulating, mocking, dismissing, and refusing to acknowledge—behaviors that undermine the recipient’s self-esteem while enhancing the abuser’s sense of power, typical of bullying. Most of us would recognize these as abusive behaviors in just about any other setting. However, because we are socialized to both expect trustworthy and professional behavior in the hospital setting and to be ‘compliant’ with medical directives, these behaviors are seldom recognized and interpreted as abuse.

According to Cheryl Beck, author of Traumatic Childbirth, birth trauma is defined as “an event occurring during the labor and delivery process that involves actual or threatened serious injury or death to the mother or her infant. The birthing woman experiences intense fear, helplessness, loss of control and horror.” She also probably feels stripped of her dignity and autonomy.  You can read the rest of this very informative article HERE.

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