Maternity care in Canada, as awful as it is to admit it, is mostly based on medical liability and so many interventions are used to control the outcome as much as possible so that easy-to-follow guidelines can be used in dealing with issues predictably to avoid lawsuits. The use of so many unnecessary medical interventions in order to mold birth into a particular timeline and picture ignores the very real and valid birth experience for women and how it affects their view of themselves as mothers, as well as how it can affect them and their infants physiologically as well.
The medical staff itself is genuinely interested in the proper care of their patients however their training is based on an outdated model of care that has very little research behind it. Obstetric history is ripe with lack of evidence-based care, especially in regards to the importance of how a woman's psychological state affects labor and birth and not doing what is necessary to support it. Certain harmful practices like the immediate clamping of the umbilical cord illustrates this perfectly, especially with all the research that supports how harmful this is to infants and yet it is still widely practiced because doing so is more CONVENIENT and has always been done this way. It is a very stubborn institution that does not welcome changes, however positive, very easily.
The root of the matter is essentially that we have the mistaken assumption that birth needs to be controlled and not simply allowed to proceed as designed, barring any health issues that could hinder it. If a woman is able to birth according to her own schedule, being supported as she needs, it requires much more analytical skills and patience to aid her and that is not EFFICIENT as far as business goes (and hospitals are businesses, despite our ‘health care’ which makes it seem less so because the cost isn’t coming directly out of our pockets). Hospitals are designed to deal with emergencies swiftly, but birth is not an emergency, it is a natural process and so the attitude they bring from the onset affects how they handle it, and there is a much healthier way to do so. You just have to research the alternatives to their ‘vision’ of what birth looks like.
The trouble is that unless you are even aware of how harmful certain birthing practices are, you would never think to question the system or look for healthier alternatives. Some good resources to begin your research is by reading literature by Ina May Gaskin and Gloria Lemay, both midwives with extensive experience in maternity care who have both observed highly medicalized births AND natural births and illustrate the differences between the two. If all you know is giving birth in the supine position, being directed to push and when, being drugged and connected to I.Vs, or even undergoing surgery; you would never understand how empowering and vastly HEALTHIER it is for both yourself and your babies to birth differently. Again, barring any medical issues that would make it preferable to have such interventions, but that is up to each mother to decide.
The research is out there, done by credible sources like medical teams, Midwife Associations, and advocacy groups. There is even the plethora of empirical evidence provided by the birthing mothers themselves that is shared with these sources as well. The information is right at our fingertips but unless you seek it you will believe whatever the normal birth culture is where you live. So many women who have gone from birthing within a hospital to birthing with a midwife in a birthing center or at home who can attest to the vast differences. Hospitals will always be there to deal with emergencies, that is their forte, but normal physiological birth is not and it shows.
QUESTION YOUR EXPERIENCES!!!