When my mother went to the hospital to give birth to my older sister she had to wait till a room was open. My mother is a Mexican woman and has dark skin. But when a Caucasian woman goes into a hospital to give birth, a room is open and waiting for her. Thankfully nothing happened to my sister in the period of time that she had to wait to come out of my mother womb, but imagine if something had had happened. Believe it or not race and culture is something that will and can affect you in the smallest simplest things. It can affect you in how long you have to wait to get food to how long you have to wait to give birth. Race is just one of the things that can affect you at the moment of giving life to another human being. Your position In society might affect help you or damage you when giving birth. If your high class or middle class you might have luck when giving birth your money might help you, but if your lower class then you have a problem and especially if you’re someone of color and belong to the lower class.
Throughout the years race has become more important than anything. Stereotypes have been made by the color of people’s skin. Back in the day when people used midwives to to help them at the moment of giving birth in their home they would have someone who was from their culture or someone who they could relate to. But when “lying- ins” (sort of hospital) were made everything changed. The creators of such things, for example the doctors Lambert and Markoe thought that people would come to their hospitals (lying-ins) so they could feel safe and have all this medical assistance. But as the book Get me out written by Randi Hutter Epstein states “Hospital deliveries meant eating strange news. it was not only a move from home to hospital it was a move from one culture to another from the familiar to the strange. It meant you were on doctors turf.” (pg. 71)
Women waiting to give birth because of the color of their skin hasn’t been something that recently started or something that is of the 21st Century. Throughout the years women have had to go through several struggles in life but they have overcome several. For example women now have the right to vote which back then wasn’t even a thought that crossed their mind. But for women to actually go through the struggl-
e of having to wait outside a waiting room to actually go into a room in a hospital to give birth was one of the many steps that came after other things other woman had to do to actually give birth. But yet again it was a concept taking into consideration while doing tests to help women with childbirth. Most doctors would use slaves to help with their test since it was better than using clean caucasian woman. For example the Doctor Sims utilized 3 slaves to help with his research, Anarcha, Betsey and Lucy.
At the end of day race and class was something that had to do a lot with the experience as a woman would go through while giving birth to her child. which was totally wrong and not ok. Doctors need to realize that just because they’re Caucasian or they’re African-American they’re still doing the same thing giving birth to another completely amazing human being.
Reading your post about how race plays a big role in child birth gave me a new perspective on how this world hasn’t really changed. Although we have had many medical advances, we haven’t changed much on the social and race aspect of this problem. The story you told in the beginning of your post really brought me in and made me want to continue reading. The topic you chose to write your post on (race) is unique and I’m glad I got to read your post. Something you might want to look into could be on how other people have been affected by race when going to a hospital. -K.Ru
I really enjoyed reading your post, Litzy! It was really good and I liked how you centered on how medicine has progressed but society hasn’t. I think the story of what your mom had to go through is terrible but at the end, it is the reality. I have many times witnessed race being taken into account in a situation. I think it is interesting how the superficial world has advanced in so many ways but our society is kind of stuck in the past. There is still racial issues in our world but we fail to do anything about it. These issues could cost lives if a woman is not attended at the hospital because of her race what could happen? But how can we change these issues? Amazing post Litzy, it really got me thinking. -Celeste O.
I’m glad you agree with my situation and thank you for reading my post. Now I don’t really have an answer for your question but I have a couple of suggestions to your question on how we can change these issues. I feel like the only way we can change any racial issue is by changing our perspective, our view to the world. Most of the time we’re always thinking that color is just a race , I know I have always said that but in reality I feel like our society needs to change. I mean to be honest even if we have medical Innovations if we don’t have a good perspective, a good mindset, a good Society we’re back to square one. it’s like nothing really change. I feel like the only way of getting rid of these issues is by really spreading the word that no matter the race no matter the luck Woman all over the world are doing the same thing, a very hard stressful thing. Once again thank you for reading my post and thank you for asking me this question you really got me thinking as well.
– Litzy S