How is the treatment of women any different today than it was at the end of the 19th Century? Now, just like then, women who are pregnant are seen as mentally unreliable. Natural childbirth advocates recall accounts of birthing women being told they need to listen to doctors’ orders, and that they are not in position to make birthing decisions themselves. They are talked down to like children when they question the wisdom of the obstetrician, especially along the lines of medication and other expensive procedures. This isn’t to say the root of the dismissal of the patients isn’t misogyny, it just shows how shallow they are, that the value money too much.
Read a “Preteen Girl” or “You and Your Body” or “What’s Happening to Me?!!??!?????” pamphlet at the local doctor’s office and look at the way girls’ and women’s bodies are portrayed.
Lol! I totally love the way women’s bodies are portrayed as all broken and crappy and they’re these poor sorry wet socks that bleed and tear open and shed blood and malfunction. Of course, men’s bodies are perfect. Nothing wrong there. Especially reproductively.
It’s stupid. Do men ever go to the doctor’s for “erection check ups”, or ejaculation “control”, or prescription napkins for semen “protection”? Women are told to give birth in hospitals. Why don’t doctors insist that men who try to impregnate their wives need do so in a hospital environment, in case “something goes wrong!”? Suppose he has priapism! Suppose his sperm isn’t up to par? Suppose they don’t swim fast enough and he needs some sort of concoction to help them go faster?
Of course this would never happen. Men’s bodies are considered perfect, invincible, and in no need of doctorly help. “In case something goes wrong”. Well, there is so much wrong with that sentence. Who’s to say women’s bodies are not equipped to do the job themselves? Why wouldn’t the womb and the birth canal and the vagina be designed or evolve to do this work themselves?
That would be bad enough, to assume that, but the way the doctors “help” makes it even worse! It’s like telling someone they can’t poop without help- laying them down flatbacked on the toilet, telling them they have to be done by a certain time or you’ll speed them up with laxatives, feeding them crap and junk that makes the bowel formation process not conducive to success (maybe making constipation), making them afraid of the process so they tense up and it hurts even more, telling them when to push- “good! Good! Great job! Let’s push now! Come on! No! No- no!”
Every blog needs a poop joke, I think. Problem is, this is not a joke. This is exactly how doctors treat birth, and it makes the experience miserable and frightening and sometimes deadly for millions of women every year.
They don’t allow the mother to eat foods or herbs which develop the baby naturally- sometimes not even to conceive the baby normally- they tell her how and when to push, to be afraid and tense up, the shackle her flat backed on the bed, they shout at her and threaten her with more interventions if she doesn’t birth fast enough, they refuse to accept that each birth and each mother are different and take different amounts of time…and then they say “gee, whiz? Why is birth so painful? It must be that pesky female inferiority thing!”. If they treated bowel movements this way, people would say they were crazy! And everyone would be afraid to poop, and to eat! What kind of person would want to live in a world like this?
Something I’ve noticed: male dominated societies always call menstrual blood “dirty”. Unclean, dirty, impure, contaminating, evil, etc. But notice how they never call any other bodily fluids- diarrhea, vomit, semen, spit, bile, earwax, pimple pus- they never consider those substances disgusting, even though they smell worse than or are more dangerous than period blood, and they don’t call the mouth or the ears or the anus or the penis dirty to the extent they call the vagina dirty. It’s only the female-specific bodily fluids or bodily function they call disgusting, perhaps because men cannot perform or produce them.
Maybe men consider these things disgusting because they cannot do them. And they want to control birth because they are jealous and they cannot do it. They want to punish women for being able to give birth, so they make it painful. They also want to rip us away from mother nature because they know with her on our side, we are doubly powerful. Hence, birth must be performed in a hospital and the mother be given male medicine.
It’s time we stop letting men control our bodies. Let’s pass out our own pamphlets about how awesome the female body is, and how birth doesn’t have to be painful or miserable…or male controlled.