Wednesday 21 August 2013

Make mine a paracetamol

Some people say funny things that don't seem to add up. When this happens, unless you have accidentally swallowed a huge 'gullible' pill, you generally have no problem with taking what such people say with a large pinch of salt. There are, however, some instances when people may say things that don't seem quite right but you would have no clue otherwise - for example, if Stephen Hawking said that we all descended from broad beans, I would not be able to query him because I know very little about biology. 
I have now learnt that some mothers seem to play on this trick because, when you are not one, the whole idea of being one seems a complete mystery and, when you become one, everyone's experience is so different that you really could not compare them. So, in reality, no one has a clue about motherhood and we’re all walking around like blind mice. 
There are some mothers who like to convince the - let's call them - 'non-mothers' that every mother's experience is the same. They are the mums that will tell a pregnant lady that she will never be able to fit into size 10 jeans again, simply because she couldn't. They are the mothers who say that you can still go out drinking every night, just because she is lucky enough to have a nanny (who is probably on the phone to social services).
Now, this may seem like a controversial thing to say, but when mothers talk about childbirth I have news for you: they all talk complete and utter twaddle. Yes, that's right, even me - I don't have a ‘scooby doo’. Just because someone had a caesarian, does not mean they would necessarily have to have one again and just because someone gave birth in four hours doesn't necessarily mean that next time their baby would come out like a pea in a peashooter. Just because someone gave birth with no pain relief... oh, but wait, that's different right?
Now, I'm not averse to hearing positive birthing stories - if it happens to come into conversation that you gave birth as you were putting the washing out and biting on a twiglet then good for you. I'm talking about the ones who, after giving birth, go and update their facebook status with something like 'Just given birth to Pricilla Rose, 7 lb 3oz, with NO pain relief!!!'  These sort of people usually have husbands who then echo the facebook status with "she did really well - no pain relief!", as though the ones who did have pain relief didn't do very well at all. 'No pain relief' statements generally leave people in three camps: 

• Camp 1 think 'Brilliant, there's hope for women kind!’
• Camp 2 think ‘Wow, she's hardcore’
• And Camp 3 think ‘lucky cow.’

So which is it? Well, possibly all three. The thing that troubles me is this ‘no pain relief’ statement in the first place. I've come across a ridiculous amount of women who seem to be desperate to blurt out that they gave birth without pain relief, like they have something to prove. Let’s analyse this further (in case you were in any doubt that saying such a statement is completely and utterly futile). Here’s why having pride in a drug free birth is ridiculous:

a). You weren't actually in pain: 
Really? Okay, we'll take your word for it, but if that's the case then you seriously can't be proud of yourself that you didn't need to take a paracetamol. 

b). You were in utter agony and you resisted pain relief:
You are a plonker.

So, the next time someone is adamant to tell you that they gave birth without pain relief go and tell them to write it on their CV in case anyone actually gives a damn one-day. Please tell them to stop putting these ridiculous pressures on other women because we all have nothing to prove. Nothing. If you love your baby then you've done enough. No matter how you gave birth you should be proud. 


  1. Ha! Yes, agree. The bit about 'oh she did really well'. This usually seems to accompany a swift speedy delivery. As if the ones that take 40 hours didn't do really well. Bet they weren't even trying!