Well clearly not birth itself. Obviously. But this week on Ranty Friday something has got right on my wick. We heard that Nick Knowles and his lovely wife were expecting their first child together in August. Excellent news you might think. But not if you have read about in the press or seen “debates” on Twitter.
Mrs Knowles has decided that she does not want her husband in the delivery room when their baby is coming into the world. He will be outside, but she does not want him the room with her, for reasons personal to herself and her husband.
That is her right.
That is her choice.
But is she allowed to have that right and that choice!? Is she hell. People are up in arms and have used phrases such as “immature” “mis guided” “selfish” and “plain wrong”.
Why is it? What is so horrific about her making that decision? Yes, some may not agree with it, for their own personal reasons, but that is for them to keep to themselves, surely. What a couple decide is entirely up to them.
Does it make it make Mr Knowles any less of a daddy? Of course it bloody doesn’t. He has been there since conception all throughout the pregnancy which is more than can be said for some men. And indeed will be there immediately after the birth. Yet some are saying this makes him a dreadful dad.
What utter crap is that? It doesn’t make him a dreadful dad at all.
It is called choice.
And I made a similar choice when one of my children was born in the 90s. I was in the UK on a business trip that had over run. By about three weeks and I was heavily pregnant and overdue. The last day I would have been allowed to fly was looming so I went back to Saudi Arabia before I was grounded as all my notes were over there too. A decision we made that was based on what was best for me, a diabetic, and the baby.
My then husband couldn’t come back with me but was told he could come back for the birth, landing the day before but would have to return to the UK the day after for another meeting in the UK (knowing the date of the C Section meant we could make those plans). He knew he wouldn’t not want to leave his new born child the day after its arrival into the world, or in fact me after my C Section. So we made the decision that he would be in the UK until three days after the arrival.
We mad that decision.
That was a choice we made. Did affect him as parent? I don’t think so.
Does it affect fathers who miss the birth due to delivery being an emergency and they can’t get there in time? Soldiers serving overseas? Of course it doesn’t. They are still loving fathers, the fact they missed the birth is unfortunate if they wanted to be there but it does not affect their ability to be an amazing father. Or supportive husband or boyfriend.
And nor will this decision made by Mr and Mrs Knowles. Women have fought for centuries for the right to have their babies how they like, for choice. Water birth / home birth / whale music / ACDC blaring out. It is their choice.
And is a very sad day when we judge somebody for that choice. Or make decisions about what sort of a parent somebody will be before the child has even been born.
How about a simple “WOOP, you are having a baby!!!!”