Tips for Getting the Non-Medicated Birth You Want

Statistics for non-medicated or non-surgical births are pretty dismal in hospital settings.

The infant mortality rate in the U.S. is terrifying, our maternal healthcare (especially for women of color) is disgusting, and Postpartum PTSD from traumatic birth experiences is skyrocketing.

It sounds depressing, but really there is so much hope!  And we are the ones who can really make a change!

As women, it's important for us to take back the beauty and power and raw goddess wisdom of natural birth.

As women, it's important for us to take back the beauty and power and raw goddess wisdom of natural birth.
- Stephanie Aberlich

It's important to trust the instinct you have to want to give your baby an entrance into this world that is gentle, nonintrusive, and doesn’t intervene in the biological process of birth.

In this incredibly allopathic and hospital centric birth system, there is very little support for women who want a natural, or non-medicated and vaginal birth.  Unfortunately the system is only set up to really support medicated and surgical births because, well, that's what doctors are trained to do.

So what do you do if you want a non-medicated birth?  In short, you need to take your power back from a largely misogynistic system.  This requires a lot of education & support.

But I've got ya covered!  If you are interested in birthing without medications, it is almost always possible!  You just need to know some kick-ass-taking-your-power-back-feminine-goddess secrets!

On today's Ask Stevie I give you 10 Tips for Getting the Non-Medicated Birth you Want.

1. Educate Yourself

Knowledge really is power especially when it comes to birth.  You don't need to become a midwife, but get a good amount of education on the cascade of interventions used in many hospitals, the natural process of birth and the stages of labor.  Also, don't forget to make a birth plan.  The education you'll gain from it is the most important thing.

Amazing Resources for Empowerment: The Business of Being Born, Ina May's Guide to Childbirth, Birth Classes: Hypnobabies, Hypnobirthing, Bradley Method.

2. Prepare for a Marathon

You wouldn’t run a marathon without training, right?  The same is true of birth. Training holistically will help you the most, but training your body & mind is especially important. Birthfit classes are amazing for preparing your body & mind.

3. Find Your Safe Space

Learn about sphincter law.  It's the notion that the sphincters in our bodies (including your cervix) don't open unless we feel safe.  So finding your safe space to give birth is incredibly important.

4. Listen to Intuition over Fear

Tap into your intuition and take wisdom from that instead of from anxiety or fear.  It's incredibly important to be making decisions from your deep inner wisdom, mama gut, or mother's intuition when it comes to the birth process.

5. Find Unwavering Support

Find people who support your ideas and are there to help, not criticize, judge, or need consoling. This also includes being educated about the birth team you choose for yourself.  Their thoughts about birth, statistics of past births, and attitude towards you are important to pay close attention to.

6. Get a Doula!!!

You need a support system in your birthing time, and I'm talking about someone other than your partner!  A good doula is not only a support system, but an advocate for your natural birth.  They are irreplaceable in my opinion, extra especially for hospital births.

7. Ignore the Haters

Let go of the need to please or be liked.  You have every right to disengage from those who don’t support you during your pregnancy and birthing time.  You will need positive energy at this time, not fearful or negative energy, so take care of yourself.  There WILL be people who think you’re crazy, who throw their shame from their own birth trauma on you, or who try to shame you with the “ who do you think you are” BS.  Check out of those convos, and if needed, those relationships.

8. Center Your Energy

Fear will kill your dreams of a non-medicated birth.  Find a way to work through it - but don’t deny it.  This may mean getting help for past birth trauma and clearing that energy.  You’re working against hundred of years of misogyny around not trusting women to birth themselves, and medical interventions being the basis of birth.  It can feel like a seriously heavy burden.

9. Trust Your Body

It's hard in the culture today, but having unwavering faith in your body is an integral part of succeeding with a non-medicated birth.  Your beliefs about your body matter greatly at this time.  So take in only positive messages about women's bodies and their birth stories.  Listen to or print out affirmations or meditations that raise your confidence in your body's ability to birth.

10. Let Go of the Outcome

This may seem counter-intuitive to everything else I shared, but shit happens.  The reality is, you may not get the birth or 4th trimester you were hoping for.  It happens to the most prepared of us and it doesn't mean you did anything wrong. Your birth will be amazing and beautiful and life altering, no matter how it turns out, so remember that.  You will meet your sweet little one and bring them Earthside when all is said and done, and that is something to feel proud of.

Awareness Over Perfection

You may think by preparing really well and following all these tips, you'll be guaranteed an amazingly peaceful, zen like birth.  That is possible, but I want to be real with you, it's also not likely.  Especially as a first time mom (and even more so if you are a HSP), birth will be a shock no matter how prepared you are.  So really surround yourself with caring, empathetic individuals who can be a safe space for you to talk to about your feelings about your birth - whether good, bad or ugly.

Tell Your Story

What resources, mindset shifts, or education were you empowered by during your non-medicated birth?  What would you do differently if given the chance? How would you prepare differently for the next birth?  Share your story and wisdom with the In Harmony Village in the comments.

With Harmony,