I Feel Sorry For Kate Middleton0
When I’m with a labouring mama I get to peep into her private life for the 12 hours I am with her. I get to see how her partner responds to her as the labour progresses or how he (or sometimes she) reacts when an emergency arises. Sometimes I’m able to catch a glimpse of amazing true love between them and other times I can tell that the partner does not really care. Often I’ll get the inside scoop on which family members are pressuring them with constant text messages for baby updates or which obnoxious family member or friend posted the details on Facebook before the new parents even had a chance (major faux pas people!).
Sometimes I’ve gone to open the door of the delivery room and found a mass of excited family members with their ears pressed up against the door. I’m not talking about 1-2 extra family members, but more like 10+ with all the cousins and brother-in-laws and maybe a next door neighbour too. I’ve even experienced running out of the room to grab extra birthing supplies and have been met with a wall of women asking me questions. ‘When is the baby going to be here? When I laboured I pushed for 1 hour. This is hour 2!’. Really, people? Really?
The truth is, I don’t love having a crowd of extended family members waiting around to hear the baby news. I totally get how exciting and life changing it is to welcome a new baby into the family, but the pressure of having a mob waiting for you to push out your baby can often be too much. We know there is a wide variation in birthing times for women and I feel like the crowd of family members can sometimes unintentionally put constraints on how things unfold. So, when I started to see the ‘Labour Watch’ reports for England’s Kate Middleton I instantly felt a bit of sorrow for this first time mum.
I totally get that being in the public eye changes how normal events, like childbirth, will unfold and be reported. That this particular mum-to-be should expect the public wants some knowledge of her personal events. However, I really wish that she was afforded the privacy to birth on her own terms. Without the constant media watch of what was happening with her cervix. Did Kate lose her mucous plug? Is she dilating?
Just like the excited family members I mentioned waiting outside the birthing room doors, the attention for Kate’s birth comes from a kind place but it’s truly over the top. Just like any birthing mummy, I wish the very best for Kate and her experience but feel sorry that her birthing experience is so widely broadcast and monitored. I feel sorry for the pressure that must exist around her pregnancy and even through to her birth. Which we all know is apparently happening today. It’s hard to avoid the reports of her birth.
Birth is a uniting force for women; it doesn’t matter if you are a crack addict with a surprise pregnancy, a regular joe or the Duchess of Cambridge. Contractions and labour don’t care if you are rich or high society. The welcoming of new life happens to be grossly routine all over the world, yet it is still an intimate experience for each and every birthing mama. Hopefully amidst the media drama, Kate will also get to experience the private personal moments that will become her own birth experience..on her own time..in her own way.
Are you excited for the Royal birthing announcement?