There are some pretty significant differences between an OBGYN, your standard pregnancy care provider, and a midwife, meaning “with woman”. What is the standard of care that you want through your pregnancy and childbirth journey? What do you want your experience to be like?
We have all been to the doctor’s office at some point in our lives and I’m sure that this first difference I share will make perfect sense to pretty much anyone. So let’s get started…….
Difference #1 Patient vs Client
With an OBGYN you are a patient, a number in a file, a name on their long list of patients to see in a day’s time. Have you ever felt unseen or unheard at a doctor’s appointment, maybe you weren’t taken seriously about something or felt like you were brushed off. I know I have felt that way a few times in my life. During pregnancy is NOT the time that you want to feel this way!
To a midwife, on the other hand, you are a client and you will usually interview (hopefully you interview more than one) and choose the person that you connect with most. She (in most cases, there are some midmen though) will connect with you on a personal level and where your appointments with your doctor may be 10-15 minutes (sometimes even less), your appointments with your midwife will be around an hour each time. They get to know you and become an extension of your family, building a bond so that when your baby is coming you feel as comfortable with them as you do with your mother, sister, or aunt.
Difference #2 Views about pregnancy and birth….
Our medical industry has been trained to treat pregnancy and childbirth as something that needs to be controlled, much like a disease or illness. This means that when you see an OBGYN they have a set protocol that they follow, but no two pregnancies or births are alike, and trying to put them in a box is dangerous to both the mother and her baby. OBGYNs are highly trained surgeons and taught that everything needs to happen in a certain order and time frame.
Most midwives view pregnancy and childbirth as a natural occurrence, needing little from outside, and allow it to progress with minimal interaction from herself. Midwives tend to believe in physiological birth. Midwives tend to believe in the natural process of birth and the strength of women to birth their babies. (There are those midwives who strictly follow the regulations and guidelines set by our medical industry, government, or their certification source that will be more medical minded from their education, they are referred to as Medwives by others in the birth working industry.)
Difference #3 Governed by hospital and insurance policy vs state regulations on midwives
Your doctor will check every box they can throughout your care, do every test, every procedure, and push for extra Ultrasounds because they can collect from insurance and if they check all the boxes they (hospital/clinic & doctor) get paid more. A midwife charges you a set amount, will normally tell you what your options are in your care, allow you to make the decision for yourself, and is more flexible in your care. Your OBGYN will almost NEVER do this.
Who do you want handling your care?
Oh, I almost forgot if you have found this information helpful and you would like more encouraging, uplifting, and supportive information, I have a community I think you might like! You will find more great tips, empowering birth stories, and the support of a community that will come alongside you through your journey! Click here to join now.