Theresa Douglass 
Member since Nov 22, 2013



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Re: “S.C. natural birth centers could face closure by state regulators

My now 17 month old son was born at Charleston Birth Place in 2012. Prior to moving to SC I lived in VA and was temporarily under the care of an OB knowing that we would be moving, just not sure when. The care I received from them was terrible. One to two hour wait times, misinformation, no support. I remember being told I could "attempt to have a natural birth." The day we found out we were moving I called the Birth Center and pleaded to be a client there. It was hard to fit me in so late in my pregnancy as they book very fast, but Lesley did it for me. My outlook on birth changed forever just by visiting orientation. These midwives didn't just believe I could "attempt" a natural birth, they knew my body was designed to give birth without intervention. Going to the birth center for my appointments wasn't like going to a Dr's office. I was always greeted by friendly staff, then allowed to go test my own urine and check my weight, which took about 2 minutes as opposed to the 30 I was used to waiting. At each appointment we were given videos to watch as we were first time clients/parents. They were incredibly useful, and taught us a lot. We were given informational documents at some discussing some common procedures that are done during pregnancy. We weren't scared into choosing anything, and we were able to give informed consent. When I went into prodromal labor that lasted a week my midwives were incredibly supportive and helpful. I know that if I had been in a hospital setting my Dr would have just induced me at that point, but the midwives are trained to know that my body is just preparing itself. After what felt like hundreds of contractions my son was born on June 16th, 2012 and caught by Laurie. I had the most amazing dream water birth. It's safe to say that the Charleston Birth Place isn't just a place women go to have birth, it's like a family. Every year they host a picnic for all past and current clients. I have met so many amazing families and strong women through them. The care doesn't compare to any other. Shutting them down is taking away our voices. I will not give birth in a hospital unless it's 100% medically necessary. I'm currently 32 weeks pregnant with my 2nd child. I found out at 3 weeks that I was pregnant, and didn't hesitate to call and set up my first appointment with them. When I called they told me several other people had called the same day. That's how much we love the birth place. We know how fast they book up, so we don't chance it. The level of care is unparalleled.

It's wrong to punish all of us, and all birth centers in SC for one incident. Babies and mothers die in hospitals all the time, and while it's always tragic, their rights to the birth options they chose are not stripped from them. Women who desire safe natural births outside of a hospital deserve those same options. Taking away our right to choose how we birth our babies is a violation of women's rights. It's going backwards in time. The birth center has saved so many tax dollars with all the c-sections they don't have and all the unnecessary interventions they prevent. It's a more affordable option for those who desire a natural birth without the harassment of Drs trying to push unnecessary procedures. I will fight for my right to give birth how and where I want, and where I want is Charleston Birth Place.

6 of 7 people like this.
Posted by Theresa Douglass on November 22, 2013 at 8:41 AM

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