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Entertainment From midwives to women: what humanity for birth?

01:10  28 november  2020
01:10  28 november  2020 Source:   liberation.fr

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Midwives have been around for centuries, and historically, it was common practice for midwives to attend most births . They tend to focus on low-risk, low-tech births for moms-to-be who want to try to avoid surgical intervention, epidurals, pain medications and/or drugs that induce labor.

Midwives today offer this care to women not just during the birthing process, but also throughout their reproductive lives. Today there are more than Centuries before obstetricians were delivering babies in hospitals, midwives in Europe attended to women as they gave birth to their children at home.

A la maternité des Diaconesses, à Paris le 17 novembre. © MARTIN BUREAU At the maternity ward of the Diaconesses, in Paris on November 17th. A blind accounting approach applies to the abolition of maternity hospitals, to births sorted, penned and standardized, as in the factory, to the detriment of the basic individual needs of women, babies and their families.

Grandstand. In this international week of the fight against violence against women, the petition of a midwife "I am mistreating, I am mistreating", rightly undermines the image of Epinal of the most beautiful profession of the world, and with it, that of the enchanted world of birth. His testimony allows us to shed, once again, a harsh light on the reality of obstetric violence, if the company, with its professionals, would have wanted to throw a modest handkerchief there to forget them, after the flood of testimonies on social networks in the summer of 2017. The storm had however been so severe that it had prompted, in 2018, a national report from the High Council for Equality between Women and Men, on "sexist acts during the gynecological and obstetrical follow-up: recognizing and putting an end to violence long ignored ”.

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Being ‘with woman ’ influences midwives , and, it is noted, the women that midwives are working with. The aim of this study was to explore Western Australian midwives ’ experiences of being ‘with woman ’ during labour and birth in the context of a model that facilitates care by a known midwife .

With regard to obstetric violence, it should be noted that immediately recognized and denounced, immediately unrecognized and ignored. Yet a host of birth professionals will find it easy to recognize themselves in the mirror of the facts recounted by this precise and detailed testimony. And they recognize their working conditions in a hospital environment, a constrained place for almost all births in France, and national specificity elsewhere.

The role of care institutions called into question

Beyond the action of each caregiver, the essential role played by care institutions and the related work organization, in mistreatment linked to care, has nevertheless been clearly documented by serious scientific work. Even the Council of Europe itself, since, in its Parliamentary Assembly, its resolution 2306, in October 2019, on "Obstetric and gynecological violence", urges states to make this scourge a public health priority. In particular, by guaranteeing "adequate funding for health establishments in order to ensure decent working conditions for nursing staff, a respectful and benevolent reception of patients and parturients, and access to pain-relieving treatment" (Art. 8.7 ). But also, by ensuring that the training of doctors, midwives and nurses gives an important place to the relationship between the nursing staff and the patients […] and to the promotion of 'a human approach to care' (Art.8.9). What is more, the work of this resolution was carried out by France, a country which claims to be the homeland of the fundamental rights of every human being.

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Midwives caring for women who want a Natural Birth Looking for more info about having a natural birth in Greenville SC; Goto

Midwives and doctors are told to address pregnant women by their name and must not refer to them as ‘she’. ‘This requires careful use of language, reflection on our own practice as caregivers, listening to women , and communicating appropriately, plainly, and respectfully to guide her through the

But in France, nothing has changed! Because nothing has slowed down inhumanity, that is to say the culture of numbers, the accounting management of care acts, the logic of the occupation of just-in-time beds and especially the restriction of human resources. Should we underline the sad prospect of the next revision of the perinatal decrees, dating from 1998, which claims to maintain in continuity the insufficient number of midwives with women? This blind accounting approach applies to the abolition of maternity hospitals, their merger, to births sorted, parked by the thousands according to their level of risk, and standardized, as in the factory, thanks to general care protocols, to the detriment of basic individual needs. women, babies and their families.


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We must believe that in this area, and long before the Covid epidemic, the work of midwives, like the work of in the world of women, in all reciprocity, suffer from the same classification between “essential” and “inessential” things. Essential, the acts, all the more numerous and expensive as they relate to care and pathology; inessential in terms of the presence, concern and support of women in their own childbirth. It will be understood, in passing, that neither the work of women in childbirth, nor that of poorly paid midwives, deserves recognition, at their fair financial and symbolic value. In all comparison, not more than that, well known and discredited, of housework and domestic tasks, in charge especially of the women.

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Home- birth midwives are banned from practicing there, so the birth is happening where most do in Tullis’s practice — in a white guesthouse, just over the border in Mississippi, where the owner allows women to have their babies. “I work in Mississippi, and I live in Alabama, where I’m a criminal,” Tullis

What kinds of women choose midwifery care? In the latest release from "I am a Midwife ," ten midwives from the US From Miami to Kansas, Maine to Arizona, from college students to immigrant communities, farmers to lawyers, in the home, hospital and birth centers, midwives provide safe

The reality of obstetric violence

For them, the situation largely contributes to the reality of obstetric violence. For midwives, this reality is nothing but suffering at extra work, an "ethical suffering" according to Christophe Dejours (1998), linked to working conditions, when shameful, inhuman, unworthy and abusive behavior is committed. heartbreak. Where, he says, you not only betray your profession and the rules it carries, but you also betray yourself. Because midwives live, in their daily work, ordinary, constrained acts, endlessly repeated, in total contradiction with their motivations and their professional ideal, its values ​​and their personal commitment to women, even with their code of ethics. .

Should we be surprised, therefore, that according to a 2020 survey by their Council of the Order, 96% of them consider their profession to be little valued, 73% little recognized, and that 55% have already thought change job? Not to mention the relative satisfaction of the pleasure taken at work and the high rate of professional burnout.

Under these conditions, it is however simple, and easy to count: a single and unique midwife to accompany each woman in the birth of a new human being, is not that the minimum of what can we claim? And which has been claimed for a very long time.

A minimum for the humanity of birth and the work of midwives, and above all the minimum for the humanity of each woman, because each one is worth it.

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This is interesting!