The Business of Being Born

So, for a long while, people have been urging me to, and asking me if, I have watched the movie “The Business of Being Born.”  You know, the one with Ricki Lake, where she goes on her crusade for a “natural” birth.  Truth be told, this movie has been sitting in my Netflix queue for a LONG time.  I think I have always wanted to see it, however, the triggers that it may have held prevented me from pressing play, until now.

Last night, I watched it.  It was terrifyingly one-sided.  Much as I expected it to be.

As an aside, it is important to note, that my personal crusade is not for c-sections, it’s not for non-instrumental birth, it IS for women’s choice, consent, education, and the ability to have all options recognized and respected in the birth realm. 

“The Business of Being Born” paints a picture of women who choose the route of c-sections as being weak.  At one point a statistic was recited about c-sections in new york and the woman interviewed’s response summarily said, “that’s so high, I thought New York women were stronger than that.”  Ahem, stronger than what?  Making an educated decision for yourself IS strong.  Deciding what you want to do with your body IS strong.  This IS feminism people, women’s choice!  I am not degrading or demoralizing natural birth.  Because that is YOUR choice.  Get it, it’s choice that should be the issue.

Another huge scare tactic they put in the movie is the fact that women will not be able to achieve the natural oxytocin high that comes with pushing a baby out of your vagina without drugs.  This in turn will cause the ability to bond with the child to be difficult if not, non-existent. (Their words, not mine.)

Well, I have to tell you.  Had I given birth to my baby without drugs or intervention in an effort to achieve this natural high they are raving about, I would most likely be dead.  And, probably the baby too.  How natural is that?

We need to stop being so one-sided on issues giving women the choice.  I wish this movie presented the facts about natural birth and the natural act of cesarean birth in a more positive choice promoting manner.  Throughout the movie, the producers are touting the fear based agenda that the medical community and the community of women buy into about not wanting a natural birth.  However, this movie could serve to instill a fear base in viewers regarding cesarean section.  Is that any better?  Creating a flip-side fear community?  I would love to see a movie that presents all aspects of birth impartially, because there are many women who need to know the facts, not just someone’s agenda. 

Thanks for Reading,



  1. Jody Said:

    Hey Laur –

    I watched the movie last night. Had to wait til Josh was outta town cause I figured he didn’t wanna see it : ) hahah! It was an interesting one. I enjoyed hearing the information about natural birth, and how the woman in the movie who got pregnant and then delivered early by cesarean had a whole new perspective on how “this was good for matteo” because she originally had wanted a home birth but then couldn’t. That really tied together the movie for me and I would have made a bigger deal about how your ideas of what you think you want and then what you have to do change once you’re the person that is pregnant /in labor.

    It was pretty one-sided with that one woman in particular who made the comment about NY women being stronger than that. I’m glad I’ve had your blog to read to balance things out and get some perspective.

    love you : )

    • peace4lauren Said:

      Thanks Jody 🙂 My point has always been that people should have the choice-it’s their body. Unfortunately, some people push their own agenda AND make the other side feel guilty, wrong, stigmatized because they have made another choice. This is what happens when well meaning women ONLY watch “The Business of Being Born” and neglect to educate themselves about other ways to birth a child. I believe birth is a very personal thing-one that an educated women can effectively make a choice about. -Lauren

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