About a month ago I was interviewed for this article about unassisted birth that just came out today: "Baby's Day Out." I was interested to see how the article turned out, since so many media reports of unassisted births present it in a sensationalist fashion, often stressing the dangerous or extreme nature of giving birth without a paid professional. There's usually the obligatory quotes from unsupportive midwives and obstetricians (birth can be very dangerous, complications arise frequently and suddenly with catastrophic results). Often the media focuses on things going wrong with an unassisted birth. Scandal sells, right?
Overall, this article took an in-depth look at unassisted birthing. I was disappointed that the author chose to profile a hospital transfer story as the primary narrative, focused on several scary experiences, and included the all-too-familiar disapproving comments from midwives and OBs. On the other hand he delved into many interesting issues that many other articles have not addressed.
I got a kick out of my "quotes." I am pretty sure those were not the exact words I used, but hey, it still sounds good, right?
Articles like this fuel my desire to get my dissertation written and published. I want people to be able to understand unassisted birth, even if they do not ultimately agree with it for their own births. Because even a very thorough reporter who has done many hours of research can misrepresent things. I wonder how much editorial control he had over his article--did the choice to emphasize the sensational and the scary elements come from him, or from higher up? Hmmm...