If there's one thing that presses my buttons, it's women who blame themselves for everything.
It is the other side of the nourishing, mothering thing. A mother gives of herself as she is pregnant gives birth and as she mothers, and then when anything goes wrong, she blames herself. More specifically, when birth doesn't go the way a woman had hoped, she often blames herself. "If only I had held out and not had the epidural, I might have not ended up with the C-section" (She forgets that it's a set-up, not her "fault" at all)
I listened yesterday to a woman who told a birth story in which she was being attended by a midwife and giving birth naturally "I wish I had coped better" she said, blaming herself. But, upon eliciting the whole story, I hear that the midwife was in the other room during her labor, having given her a dose of nubain to "help her rest". She would doze and then wake up every few minutes unprepared for the massive power of labor with nobody who understood how to help her at her side. Her huband was unprepared and her mother prayed anxiously. The midwife appeared when it was time to push. I cringe to hear that story. How can she blame herself. I want to shout "BLAME THE MIDWIFE". But, out of loyalty to my sister midwives, and because, I suppose outward turning anger would probably be as unproductive as self-blame, I just focus on stressing that "NO, this is NOT your fault. You were in just as much a "situation" as the woman with the epidural in the hospital"
For most women, giving birth naturally requires support, nothing fancy, not necessarily TENS machines, or medication, doula or midwife gimmicks, just loving, confident support.
Pretty simple really.