I think I agree with the general philosophy of Hypnobirthing. The idea of "tuning out" to the world and just relaxing through the contractions. At least, that's how I interpret the general philosophy of Hypnobirthing. I had to sift through a whole lot of hokey BS in first few chapters that just made me snort. Like insisting that they're not "contractions," they're "surges." Your water doesn't "break," it "releases." Just a lot of flower-power type stuff that isn't my cup of tea. But I figured that's not really the point, so I kept on reading.
Last night, I finally got to the nitty-gritty method section. At first it all sounded great. And then I reached my breaking point. Allow me to quote for you:
"Pushing can be counterproductive and actually slow down the birthing process... There has been much written about the inefficiency of forced pushing and the possible damaging effect it has on the muscles of the birthing woman's pelvic floor, but it remains a necessary part of emergence in the minds of many caregivers and women themselves... Often women themselves will speak of an overwhelming urge to push taking over. If this is felt, it is also because of conditioning that stems from a deeply embedded notion that babies cannot descend on their own."
Um, no. That's where I have to draw the line. I have NEVER met a woman who gave birth without drugs who DIDN'T feel relief by bearing down or pushing when it came to that point. I have never seen or heard of a woman in natural labor (not using this method, of course) that, when the baby starts crowning and the nurses say "Don't push! Don't push! We need to wait for the doctor!", doesn't respond with "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?!?!?!?"
The urge to push IS overwhelming. It is INSTINCT. It is working with your body to get the baby out. It is usually the only way to relieve the pain and feel better at that point. It has been seen and proven, over and over and over and over again. And a book that can honestly try to tell me otherwise is completely discredited in my mind. "Conditioning" my ass. Sure, they present another way to approach that stage of labor, and it works for many women. But don't tell me that pushing is "wrong." Just tell me there's another way.
So I give up on my hypnobirthing book. I desperately hope the store will still take it back so my money's not wasted. It was ridiculously expensive. Good luck to any out there who still want to use this method of natural childbirth, it's just seriously not my thing.