The title says it all – Help!
I think that's a great question. It's actually one that every woman should be asking herself because it's so important.
I think there are women out there who want to get pregnant and then have a baby. They just want to go from “A” to “Z” without the rest of the letters in there. They don't want to worry about pregnancy and childbirth.
Now, granted, some will argue with me that that's their choice. But I really don't think that's the way to approach having a child.
A child will be your responsibility until they have reached adulthood. You really can't just toss aside their “first nine months” and their birth and say “I'll get started when they're born.”
A baby is depending on you even in the womb, so there are responsibilities.
I have always viewed how I care for myself during pregnancy as how I'm caring for my baby.
So responsibility during pregnancy involves taking good care of yourself, and thus your baby:
Getting proper nutrition is probably the most vital thing you can do.
Exercise – moderate is fine, but do something to keep up your circulation (benefits you and baby!) and keep you cheerful 🙂
I also think it's your responsibility to truly research your options during pregnancy and for childbirth. Understand why nutrition is so important. Understand why you should choose a midwife or doctor, or why you choose a specific midwife or doctor.
Research why prenatal tests are given and then decide if you're going to get them.
As a woman prepares for childbirth I think it's her responsibility find out what's going to happen during birth. What's going to happen to her physically – and what kind of procedures and interventions may happen.
Again, some people argue it's not their place to say this, and that if a woman wants to hand everything over to her doctor for a “managed” birth, well, that's her right.
That's the “politically correct” thing to say, but parenting a child is not all about a “woman's rights” and it's certainly not “politically correct.” When a woman becomes a mother she has a responsibility to her child – and that includes being aware of just what somebody else may do to her child – in the womb, during birth, and throughout the rest of that child's growing years.
So I think a woman does have the responsibility to become fully informed about her care during pregnancy and childbirth.
She needs to prepare for birth with a good childbirth education course.
Basically you need to take ownership of your pregnancy, your birth, your body, and your baby. You are in charge – and you are also responsible for the choices you make and what happens to your baby.
I know our modern society doesn't really like owning up to responsibility – it's all about blaming other people. But in reality, it is your responsibility to care for your child.
So research everything – and do what you feel is best based on what you discover in your research. Don't blindly take what your midwife or doctor says.
I don't even want you to blindly take what I say – research for yourself and do what you feel is best for yourself and your baby. That's what your responsibility is 🙂
If you want to get started by looking at my advice 😉 take a look at my nutrition articles and our online childbirth class series