According to the NHS, around one in every four to five pregnant women in the UK gives birth by Caesarean section. It's "a major operation that carries a number of risks," the NHS says, "so it's usually only done if it's the safest option for you and your baby."
Yet despite this, the procedure still carries some completely unfair negative connotations, perhaps partly fuelled by editors who trot out the "too posh to push" headline whenever a celebrity has a C-section.
One woman who recently gave birth by Caesarean is helping to combat this stigma by posting picture of her still-healing C-section scar on the Birth Without Fear Facebook page.
"I've decided to post this picture to see if it may make people understand that despite what our birth plans might say sometimes we don't get a choice. I didn't get a choice," Jodie Shaw writes in a caption accompanying the picture. "I had a fibroid the size of a melon sat on my cervix and a low lying placenta which meant that I've been left with no ordinary C-section scar. But whether you believe this or not, I gave birth to my baby."
"So next time you judge someone for not doing what you consider to be 'giving birth' please take a minute to think about why they may have had to deliver that way," she continues. "Think about the fact that given the choice they probably wouldn't of chosen this but had no choice. Why would you choose a major operation and 6 weeks of recovery?"
Jodie concludes: "This scar saved me from losing a life threatening amount of blood and meant my baby was brought into this world as she should be. Healthy and unharmed, as was I." Well said, Jodie, and good on you for sharing your story. Further information about C-sections is freely available on the NHS website.
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