5 Myths About Childbirth

Sasha Brown-Worsham

Baby alan after birth
Photo by Rob Worsham
Births are not like the movies or TV. Just in case you were wondering.

Your water will likely not break at work. You will probably not deliver in a shared room with an ex-boyfriend and, most of all, your birth will look almost nothing like your neighbor's. Guaranteed.

I used my own experience, asked a few women to give me some of their stories, and complied a list of myths and facts about The Big Event.

Myth # 1: You will be in control.

Fact: We all would love to believe that we write our birth plans and execute them exactly as they appear, but the fact is all labors are different. A friend recently went through her second birth and, though she had planned an entirely natural birth, her "failure to progress" from 7 centimeters to 10 meant she ended up getting a c-section. Don't feel like a failure if this is you. Just remember a birth plan is really only a record of your "best case scenario." Whatever happens will be OK in the end.

Myth #2: You will need the drugs.

Fact: If you want to make a crowd of women laugh at you, just tell them you plan to do your birth "au naturel." 

"Sure," they will say. "Good luck with that."

But the reality is that it's entirely possible to have a natural birth with no intervention and not be some hippy dippy insane person. Neither of my births was medicated and while I know it's a hot-button topic, the fact is, it really wasn't that bad. Sure, it was a strange sensation, but it was entirely doable. The naysayers just need to clam up. What was good for them isn't necessarily good for you and vice versa.

Myth #3: You will cry tears of joy.

Fact: When my children came out, I was relieved and anxious to take a shower. Honestly. There were tears of joy. Eventually. But they were hours later, after the sheer shock of what I had just gone through wore off. Seriously, all I wanted was to not be goopy and uncomfortable.

Myth #4: You will poop.

Fact: Some do, some don't. You're likely not to even know either way since they take it away so quickly. 'Nuff said.

Myth #5: You will curse at your husband or partner.

Fact: Some people may do this, but in my case, I was actually very connected to my husband during the whole process. He applied counter-pressure to my back, held my hands, and acted as labor coach, doula, best friend, and mini-midwife. I would have never even considered cursing at him.

What were some of your myths and facts?

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