• Wed, Apr 17 2013

Pray Tell, Why Did I Watch A Woman Give Birth On 19 Kids & Counting Last Night?

Jana Duggar Jill Duggar Midwives 19 kids and countingWhile I’m usually offended by 90% of what goes on during any given episode of 19 Kids & Counting, last night’s birthing scenes shocked me. Not because I’m some kind of vagina-denier who doesn’t get where babies come from, but more because why?

And before you start freaking out, let me comfort you by saying that it was not Michelle Duggar giving birth. Even though she reminds you every single episode that she did birth all 19 of her children. You know, just in case you forgot. Then after that reminder she quizzes herself on all their names, gets halfway through her game and then takes standing naps for the rest of the day. Oh her eyes are open and she’s talking, but she’s definitely sleeping. Homeschooling be damned.

No this totally unnecessary birthing scene involved Jana and Jill’s patient, Heather. Her water finally broke and they finally got to get down to midwifery. While I’m (non-sarcastically) thrilled that they’re working women, I’m disappointed that their work comes with a religious spin. For example, the woman in labor doesn’t want to take any drugs because God wouldn’t want her to take any drugs. That’s written in the Ten Commandments  remember? It’s commandment 7.5. “Oh btdubs, don’t kill and don’t covet and don’t you dare use modern medicine when giving birth in 4 million years Heather, don’t even think about.”

You’d think that after being raised with religion as part of their everyday life for their entire childhood, the Duggars would feel confident enough about their faith that they could work alongside non-religious people. But alas, that’s not the case.

Anyways, so we’re in Heather’s house as she’s preparing to give birth. And we see her in the tub, we see her rocking back and forth, we see her pushing the baby out and we see her baby the moment it’s born. Sure Jana and Jill are in the room, but they’re not the focus of this episode at all. 19 kids in one house and the best story line they could come up with revolves around a stranger giving birth?

Sure, okay. I guess it’s slightly better than watching Jim Bob Duggar and Josh Duggar work out for 10 minutes. Because that was painful enough for me to maybe skip the rest of the season.

(Photo: Facebook)

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  • kb

    Thank you for taking one for the team each week and watching this show so that I might have a laugh or two.

    • Jenni

      You’re very welcome, I consider it my patriotic duty.

  • http://mothermayisleepwithlifetime.blogspot.com Jen

    Wait…so…do they take Advil and other painkillers like that? Would they take medicine to help, say, a heart condition? What about Viagra–is the Bible cool with that since it’s for the dudes? I am confused as to how the Bible could possibly stipulate that you can’t take pain meds for giving birth only, but for other stuff it’s OK. Then again, I’m also confused how the Bible could say that gay people can’t get married and that black presidents are Muslims, so…

    • Jenni

      Don’t try to understand it. You’ll just confuse yourself.

  • MCR

    Actually, when pain medication for childbirth was first introduced, representatives of several Christian denominations questioned whether it was doctrinally acceptable. Something to do with labour pain being assigned to us as part of the consequences of our fallen state. It was debated for a short period before almost everyone quickly agreed that it was fine. Of course, as with birth control and other issues, there are always a few holdouts.
    Interestingly (to me, at least), a lot of women refuse pain medication during childbirth because they consider it empowering, and see the routine use of obstetric painkillers as subtly patriarchal. It’s a subject that can bee seen from many perspectives.

    • http://twilightirruption.blogspot.com/ abbeysbooks

      The Dominating Discourse is in flux on pain.

    • MCR

      I don’t think it’s ever really been about pain, but about control. Telling women they must have pain in labour, and telling them they must not, both come from the same impulse, as does the longstanding medical obsession with controlling women’s sexual pleasure. You can see this in the kind of procedures that became common as soon as obstetrics/gynecology became a medical specialty.

    • http://twilightirruption.blogspot.com/ abbeysbooks

      Yes but the Dominating Discourse is just that: Dominating. That’s why it is called the Dominating Discourse. You speak and write in it you think in it, so control comes naturally from the way you speak and think. Practices are not outside of it.

    • MCR

      I’m not sure I get your point. Do you mean “you” literally, as in me? Or do you mean “they” speak, write, and think in it, and therefore their practices are consistent with their thoughts?

    • http://twilightirruption.blogspot.com/ abbeysbooks

      I used the impersonal “you” as English doesn’t have two forms. Confuses people.

    • MCR

      Okay. In that case, I agree with you,

  • MM

    Why do you have to pick on the Duggars!!!!! They are an amazing family!

  • just a fan

    if you don’t like the show, then don’t watch it. There are a lot of us out here that happen to love this family and would appreciate it if you keep your hateful remarks to yourself

  • NotAshamed

    I, literally, just watched this episode. The couple actually stated that they used to tell their friends they were crazy for using a midwife. But there was NEVER any mention of not using drugs because of the Christian faith. I’ve been raised in a Christian home and am a Christian myself. We have a LOT of parents in our church. And lots of kids, goodness. I seriously doubt a single one of these moms them would tell you their epidurals were against God’s Word. I wish people would stop making things up that Christians allegedly say. I came across this when looking for Heather’s baby’s name, and it’s frustrating.