This selection of vaginal birth video clips shows women giving birth attended by medical attendants in a hospital setting.
WARNING - these are very graphic child birth videos.
Research has shown that the lithotomy position (lying on your back) is the worst position for giving birth!
Although we have personally witnessed some hospital births that were more peaceful, gentle and with less interventions to the newborn, than these, they are probably the exception, rather than the norm.
All over the world and throughout recorded history, women have chose upright positions to give birth, and it is only we in the West who have had the extraordinary notion that a woman should lie on her back with her legs in the air to deliver a baby.
- Sheila Kitzinger in the Foreword of Active Birth
We were NOT able to find vaginal birth video clips in a hospital setting, showing women giving birth in any other position than on their backs or inclined at best.
It seems to be standard procedure for birthing attendants in hospitals to insert their fingers into the vagina and manipulate the baby's head and body as it emerges. Then, in many cases, routine suctioning, rubbing, swift cord clamping and other procedures follow.
While researching child birth videos for this website, it became apparent how much less peaceful the baby's entry into the world may be, in a hospital setting, compared to a home birth.
Click here to watch home birth videos for a comparison.
If you wish to birth in a hospital and want to avoid any of these routine procedures, it would be best to draw up your birth plan and explore your options as soon as possible.
Make sure your partner is in agreement with you, and that he and your doula are prepared to be assertive and advocate on your behalf, should the need arise.
Woman Giving Birth Vaginally in Hospital
This birth shows a very gentle and pleasant birth attendant attending to a woman in stirrups. However, as you will see, she is actively managing the birth process. The woman giving birth seems to have no autonomy. She is a 'laid-back patient'. The video shows the routine suctioning of the newborn very clearly.
Vaginal Birth Video Showing Use of Stirrups
See how unempowered and vulnerable this birthing position makes a woman! This birth is handled as an impersonal, medical event rather than as a natural, instinctive process.
Graphic Vaginal Birth Video
This video shows the attendant pulling the baby out of the birth canal.
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