Why people choose Homebirth
It used to just be called “birth.” For most of human existence babies have been safely and gently welcomed into the world in the family home. For a variety of reasons, birth in the United States moved into the hospital setting in the early 1900s, profoundly changing the ways we approach pregnancy and birth, care for newborns, bond as a family, and view our reproductive and creative bodies. Today, about 2% of pregnant people in the U.S. choose to give birth at home, reclaiming the personal autonomy, intimacy, and normalcy that are the foundations of home birth midwifery care.
Why Choose Homebirth?
Homebirth midwifery care emphasizes the principle of autonomy. The birthing person has the right to make decisions about their care every step of the way. During birth the client is able to choose where the birth will occur, who will be present, how they move and nourish their body, and how much hands-on support they will receive. Linked to autonomy is the concept of Informed Choice. This vital aspect of midwifery care means that through discussing the risks and benefits of an option, being given the chance to ask questions, and to learn from multiple sources, the pregnant person is an active participant, sharing the responsibility of decision making with the rest of the birth team.
~ Continuity of Care
Seeing the same midwife for most, if not all, care means that we have plenty of time to get to know each other and build a trusting, respectful relationship. A cornerstone of midwifery care, continuity allows the unique physical and emotional needs of each mother to be centered, leading to individualized, compassionate care.
~ Family Centered
Home birth midwifery care creates space for a family focused experience. The mother and her birth partner have the flexibility of inviting whomever they choose into the birthing space and of deciding how involved they wish them to be. The baby’s siblings can be witnesses or active participants, or simply asleep in their own beds. Every effort is made to ensure immediate and uninterrupted skin-to-skin time for mother and baby. All unnecessary procedures are delayed until after the baby has nursed, allowing for a peaceful newborn transition.
~ Normalcy and Comfort
A person is most likely to experience an uncomplicated physiologic birth when they feel comfortable, relaxed and supported. Birthing at home means being in familiar surroundings and with a chosen birth team. The midwife is an experienced and skilled attendant who is simultaneously able to trust birth and to remain alert, allowing the client and family to have the opportunity to experience these events with gentleness and safety.