Jen Kamel on VBAC and the Importance of Birth Options
“Your Birth, Your Worth” is a podcast exploring the link between feelings of worthiness and birth and postpartum experiences. Spoiler alert: you are worthy because you are you. There are no conditions on your worthiness.
Our mission is to help you believe in your inherent worthiness and to offer tools, information, ideas, and inspiration to help you have empowered, supported, and respected births and postpartum transitions. Episodes drop every Wednesday.
Episode 11: Jen Kamel on VBAC and the Importance of Birth Options
“There is a lot of fear that drives medical care and a lot of care that drives maternity care…if you look at ACOG’s guidelines, you can see that they are not recommending ‘once a c-section, always a c-section.'”
As a fierce advocate for accessible information about VBACs, Jen has built a platform that “neutralizes the misinformation and confusion about VBAC so respectful, evidence-based care is the foundation from which families grow.” In today’s episode, Taylor and Jen talk about Jen’s 2 births and the path they started her on towards the work she does now.
Jen Kamel is a nationally recognized Consumer Advocate who founded VBAC Facts in November 2007 after learning how many women were coerced into repeat cesareans violating medical ethics and their human rights. Her mission is to increase access to VBAC so that every pregnant person knows in their bones that they have complete control over what happens to their body. She created the VBAC Facts Professional Membership where she supports perinatal professionals around the world who want to confidently guide their clients through the evidence so they can make truly informed decisions. She also offers online educational courses for parents. She is a national speaker and legislative consultant focusing on midwifery legislation and regulations. She has testified multiple times in front of the California Medical Board and legislative committees on the importance of VBAC access and serves as an expert witness in legal proceedings. Her free resources and signature courses are at vbacfacts.com.
Key Takeaway: It’s important to make decisions about birth based on solid information. For so many people birthing after cesarean, finding that information is hard. That’s where Jen and VBAC Facts come in. Being an empowered decision-maker during your birth experience can mean the difference between being traumatized after birth and being triumphant and confident, regardless of exactly how your baby is born.
- Jen’s own experiences giving birth
- Why the phrase “VBAC is an option for next time” changed Jen’s life
- Empowerment post-VBAC
- How different cultures handle postpartum
- How being honest about the trauma of birth can lead to eventual healing
- New parents need empathy, love, and support
- Where and with whom to share your birth story
- A healthy baby isn’t all that matters
- The Rise and fall of VBAC in America
- What people can do to improve their chances of having a VBAC and the element of luck when it comes to birth
- Hospital guidelines & policies on VBAC
Your Birth, Your Worth Podcast Website: https://www.yourbirthyourworthpodcast.com/
Jen Kamel at VBAC Facts: https://vbacfacts.com/
Taylor’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/taylordavisdoula/
Taylor’s VBAC Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/yourvbacjourney/
Darcy’s Website: https://www.thirdtrimesterthrive.com/
Darcy’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thedouladarcy/
I'm Taylor, your VBAC Doula
I’m a doula, doula trainer, childbirth educator, ICAN leader, cesarean mama, VBAC mama, and HBAC mama. My mission is to support VBAC hopefuls to have empowered births.
"Taylor is warm, encouraging, and assertive. She allowed me to take charge and supported my decisions. I know that is the role of a doula, but I guess I expected to be following her lead or waiting for her suggestions. In the moment of labor, I needed those around me to support me in whatever felt right in that moment. It’s like she knew my body would lead and she followed that. I felt loved and heard every step along the way."