Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Say What You Mean

You do not have to be induced. No matter what they say. No matter what you say. Even when medically indicated!

*Gasp* Am I proclaiming that you shouldn't get an induction when medically indicated?  No, of course not. But that's you're choice! And that is the point I am making.

I am so tired of hearing women say "I had to get induced because..." You did not HAVE to get induced! You do not HAVE to be induced!

In regards to medically indicated inductions

Please, I implore you, for the sake of birth in our society, consider your words carefully. Because how we speak, how we think, how we view birth matters; it truly, truly makes a difference for women around us and for future generations. What are we teaching our daughters and their future husbands when we say "I had to"? We are teaching them and those around us that it is not their birth, it is that of the institution. Semantics are incredibly powerful. The correct terminology in the case of your suggested medical induction would be, "My care provider recommended induction" And then, do your research or look within or pray, whatever your general go-to method is when between a rock and a hard place. It IS your choice to allow or decline your care provider's suggested induction. Take responsibility for your birth- after all, it's your body, your baby, your birth, your choice.

I urge you, to know and understand what true medical indications for induction are. Take responsibility for your choice.

Did you know: 

According to the NNEPQIN Post maturity (gestational age <41 weeks) is an elective induction.
ACOG, Mayo Clinic and American Family of Family Physicians all discourage the elective induction or scheduled cesarean for reason of a "big baby."
Childbirth Connection and Evidence Based Birth also have a lot to say about inductions.
Lamaze International says
When it comes to choosing a birthday, baby knows best.
UpToDate says
Delivery before the onset of labor is indicated when the maternal/fetal risks associated with continuing the pregnancy are thought to be greater than the maternal/fetal risks associated with early delivery
Your due date is not an expiration date 

In regards to elective inductions

The truth is, well you know what the truth is. 

I'll say it again, semantics are powerful. 

"I had to be induced because I'm overdue" means "I'm sick of being pregnant so I've decided to force my baby out because I went past my guess date"  

As I said before, your due date is not an expiration date. You have options.

Sometimes, women feel - due to family circumstances, such as spouse availability, family being in town to help after baby is born, striving to get all of that maternity leave - that they must induce. In these circumstances, please, please, understand the real hormones involved and the importance of labor. Understand, as said before, you should be choosing the lesser of two evils. It is your choice, I give you that but be responsible for it and responsible for what you say, because semantics are powerful. Did you hear me yet? Semantics are incredibly powerful; we are shaping the way our society views birth, not just now but for future generations. So please, if you've chosen an induction for convenience, stop saying "I need to be induced" because you don't! You are choosing to be induced. Furthermore, you should never feel pressured into an induction. "My care provider says I have to be induced" is not, in and of itself, a valid reason for induction. Your care provider may recommend and induction but in the end it is your choice to accept or decline. You do not have to show up! Make an informed choice that supports your birth, your body, your baby and your desires.

To induce or not to induce. That is the question. And it is just that, a question, a suggestion, an intervention. This is your Journey of Life -own it!

Did you schedule your labor or let nature decide?


  1. This is an awesome and brave article. I have been induced and had natural labors and have used those words that pass off responsibility to someone else. I have since learned better and have taken responsibility for my medical decisions. You are so right, words are powerful. Let's take responsibility for ours and the effect they have on the world around us.

  2. Thank you. Well done on your natural labors- isn't it a thrilling experience! And kudos to you; 'when we know better, we do better'.


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