[This is the fifth interview in the series Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions.]
Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions with Mr. Green
Mr. and Mrs. Green write about environmental issues and green parenting on their site Little Green Blog.
1. Why did you choose homebirth?
I supported my wife’s decision. I wouldn’t presume to suggest she should have had anything one way or another. I view my role as supporting the choices my wife makes.
2. Whose idea was it, yours or hers? If hers, what convinced you to agree? If yours, what gave you the idea?
It was my wife’s decision and it was my choice, duty and responsibility to support that because I put full trust and acceptance in my wife’s ability and intuition to make the right choice with regards to child birth. It’s not an issue that I feel I had any right to influence of interfere with. However, I feel it’s my utmost responsibility and duty to support her decision in every single way.
3. What homebirth books or resources did you find to be the most helpful?
4. Before the birth, what fears or issues did you have surrounding homebirth (or birth in general)? How did those change for you after experiencing the birth?
My issues were solely to do with the probably interference and controlling, manipulative attitude of the health service. There were no issues concerning safety, appropriateness or lack of facilities.
After the birth it confirmed our concerns that the health service are afraid of relinquishing power and control to the mother-to-be and that they looked for every possible opportunity to control the pregnancy and birth.
Our own actions during the birthing process had the predicted positive outcome. There were no hidden surprises regarding our own decision.
5. What do you wish someone had told you before your first homebirth? What advice would you give to a first time homebirth dad?
I can’t think of anything I wish someone had told me beforehand.
We prepared thoroughly for several months into the pregnancy so in no way were we unprepared. My advice to any father-to-be would be to take active steps to prepare himself emotionally, psychologically and to be well informed about the process of supporting his partner.
6. Which part of the birth did you find to be the most difficult or challenging for you?
Getting the midwives out of the way
7. Did you have support during the birth from your guy friends? If so, what was the most supportive? If not, what would have helped you the most?
No support and I don’t expect any help or support from my guy friends.
8. How was your interaction with the midwife during the birth? What could have made that better?
The interaction was strained; that could have been improved by them getting out of the way and leaving nature and the wisdom of my partner to take its course as it has done so for thousands of years; unassisted.
9. How has the relationship with your partner changed after having a homebirth together?
The process of homebirth and the father becoming directly involved is a powerful bonding experience that essentially integrates mother, father and child in a far more meaningful way than the separation techniques often used in hospitals.
In my opinion, there should be no option for the father, if present to be outside of the birthing experience and that he should be totally integrated as the number one support partner.
10. Would you have another homebirth? Why or why not?
Certainly! Because it was a positive outcome and a very bonding experience for the three of us (mother, father, baby)
Bonus: Will you describe the emotional/spiritual side of your birth experience from a man’s viewpoint?
What I witnessed will always remain a tribute to the power of the woman. Something truly primal, and deeply moving. How amazing, rich, and expansive is the female spirit! At a time like this, men can only look on in humility and awe. You truly have our deepest respect; we could never even come close.
[Thank you, Mr. Green, for sharing your story with us. Be sure to catch the other posts in the Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions series: Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions with Steve C., Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions with Damon Young, Homebirth Dads: 10 Questions with Sean Daily, and 10 Homebirth Dads: Questions with Nick Chambers. If you would like to participate, contact me at derek at naturalpapa.com]
Image: CG2_SoulArtist at Flickr