This is our summary of the 2008 Ricki Lake documentary named "The Business of Being Born".
This documentary examines child birthing in the US by comparing various child birth stories that include methods like natural midwifery, home birth, water births, Caesarean / C-sections and epidurals.
Questions are raised regarding the tendency of the US health care system towards drugs and other expensive medical interventions as its usual response to child birth. Conversely, in much of the remaining parts of the developed world, medical intervention is sought in cases of emergency. In other words, midwife-assisted natural childbirth is the norm for mothers in other non-US developed world countries.
1 OF 2 SPECIALS: LIMITED TIME OFFER--
After having highlighted major differences as this, the documentary also offers various alarming statistics. For instance, it suggests that the US has the 'second worst newborn death rate in the developed world' and the 'worst maternal death rate in the industrialized world'.
Throughout the film, various women are interviewed on the matter of preference with regards to child birth and care. Their various birth stories and views may be summarized by the personal perspective of a woman (Ricki Lake) who suggested feelings that the current tendency away from natural child birth had robbed her of an important and beautiful experience as a mother. Feeling strongly about the matter, that woman even took charge by seeking the natural alternative for birthing her second baby.
Advertisements are shown that highlight the role of the media. This offers an opportunity to examine the messages being passed on pregnant women about their options for having a baby and a possible explanation as to why, unlike Ricki Lake, other pregnant women might shy away from midwife-assisted natural child birth.
Among the interviewees are experts who describe the emphasis on business efficiency to get beds filled and emptied within given time periods. Also reiterated in the various birth stories is the feeling of helplessness that mothers experience regarding their wanting to demand a more natural child birth experience, especially once medical intervention begins.
2 OF 2 SPECIALS: LIMITED TIME OFFER
We posted this documentary not to serve as an indictment against any single country's health care system. Instead, it appeals to pregnant women to consider the various birth stories discussed and possibly to take control of their own child birthing experience through more natural means regardless of their geographic location.
- A video of a woman experiencing the Bradley Method of natural child birth. Apart from showing you her experience, the new mother contrasts this Bradley Method natural water birth with a previous birthing experience that had followed more orthodox forms of medicine.
- See the trailer for Ricki Lake's documentary "The Business of Being Born".