Camila Alves Makes Peace With Her Labor and Delivery

09/18/2008 at 01:30 PM ET

Calling her 60-hour labor the “best dance” she’s ever had with partner Matthew McConaughey, model Camila Alves opens up in a new interview with about the “blessed moment” she became mom to Levi, 10 ½-weeks. However, even the best-laid plans have been known to go awry, and Camila admits that she was hoping for a natural birth. “We tried every single way” to avoid a medical intervention, the 25-year-old first-time mom says — including spending one 14-hour stretch contracting at every two minutes, with no pain relief! “I wasn’t too crazy about having to do a C-section and take all the drugs. Finally, I had to just be like, ‘Let it go, make peace with it, it’s not what God or nature is telling you to do.'”

“You have to make peace with it and be thankful that you have great doctors and a great hospital. It was different than how I wanted to do it, but [Levi] came out eyes wide open, happy, healthy.”

Although she is now at ease with the way her son entered the world, Camila says she wouldn’t recommend a C-section — and she has trouble understanding why some women elect to have the procedure when it is not medically necessary. “There’s a lot of pain and recovery is not fun,” she notes. “You already went through the whole pregnancy, and you don’t want to sit around for six to eight weeks in recovery. If there’s any advice I could give to a pregnant women, it’d be to have a natural birth.” Camila says she was helped immensely by a very “hands-on” Matthew during the delivery, something that is reflected in her advice for other expectant moms.

“Staying calm is the best thing you can do. Relax. Be peaceful. Try to listen to your partner.”

Click ‘more’ to read about how Levi fits into Camila and Matthew’s lifestyle.

Camila — who says that nursing is “going great, thank God” and that Levi is at the breast “all the time” — is not overly-concerned about returning to her pre-baby body, predicting that “everything will get back to the way it’s supposed to be in time.” The couple plan to raise Levi to be bi-lingual, because most of Camila’s family does not speak English. “It’s so important for the baby,” she explains. “He’s going to know all his American roots, but he also needs to know about his Brazilian side.” With the couple’s willingness to hit the road with Levi in tow, it doesn’t sound like getting to know Camila’s family will be a problem! Of being out and about with baby, Camila says it’s a state of being that Levi actually seems to prefer.

“If our lifestyle was doing anything to harm him, we’d have to adapt, but he loves it. He loves the action. He loves to be right in the middle of it. He actually doesn’t like it when it’s too quiet.”

Adding a baby hasn’t done much to change the dynamic between Matthew and Camila, either. “We’re just who we are and now we have one extra member of the tribe,” she says. “We still do the same things. We just take a little extra time to prep, a little extra time to leave the house.” That laid-back approach to parenting is in keeping with the couple’s laid-back approach to life, and Camila shares that — perhaps not so coincidentally — fatherhood has come naturally to Matthew.

“He’s the best dad he can be. He’s 100 percent hands-on.”


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rox on

In our hospitals they dont let the fathers in the delivery room.

carie on

She seems really sweet. I can see why these two are so happy with each other. 🙂

Lily on

I don’t know why so many women make such a big deal about c-sections like it’s unnatural or a bad way to have your child be born. I’m pregnant now and if I had to have one, I wouldn’t stress about it or have to find some ‘peace’ about it. That baby got in your body one way and has to come out one way or another–does it really matter how?

Brandi on

Well I think it’s good that she’s honest about her situation. I know most of my friends that have had c-sections needed them and they happened in an emergency setting, and afterwards they were definitely a little disappointed. Of course you get over it but there are feelings you have to work through, especially if you feel like you were delivered by your doctor instead of having given birth.

Camila is just being honest and I find it refreshing. She’s just sharing her experience and saying for her it was hard but she had to just let it go. It’s better than having her say things went wonderfully when maybe they didn’t. This is just her experience and her advice.

Anyway. I am glad to hear the baby will be raised bilingual! I was wondering about that.

Alex on

rox, where do you live?

Kate on

It’s nice that she could see that sometimes “nature” doesn’t allow for certain things. Some babies need c-sections to make their arrival safely.

My SIL is a doctor, an internist, who is currently 2 years into a research fellowship. Her husband is a surgeon. She chose an elective c-section for her first child. She was and is plenty educated and still made the choice, because for her, it was the right choice.

I am 8 months pregnant, I would prefer not to have a c-section, because I simply don’t want surgery, but in reality, the way my child arrives is completely incidental to me, I want her here safely. That’s all.

LisaS1968 on

Lily- you can’t really comment until it has happened to you. I had a vaginal birth with my daughter that was one of the more powerful experiences of my life. I recovered very quickly even with 3rd degree tears. With my son, I had complete placenta previa and had to have a c-section. The recovery was REALLY rough, and my lower stomach has never been the same. I don’t deny the need for a c-section, like mine was. Of course there are times it is necessary. But I would far prefer a natural birth anytime both for the experience and the recovery. There is something far more inherently natural about it…

JC on

Her point about the c-sections is that she doesn’t understand why someone would elect to have one when there is no medical reason to have one.

roxi on

I live in Romania (Prahova).

Kerri on

I love her and Matthew’s attitude about Levi, from their lifestyle, to his birth.

Kym on

She is lucky her baby is ok. My friend that refused a C-section (hers was because she was vain and didn’t want a scar). The umbilical cord had been wrapped around her sons neck the whole time, he went without oxygen and is now extremely mentally handicapped. If it becomes obvious you’re not going to deliver on your own please don’t wait 30 hours.

mel on

Lisa…I 100% agree with every word you said. I had two amazingly powerful birthing experiences with two of my boys and the third was a c-section for medical reasons…ugh!

Lauren on

Obviously having major abdominal surgery is only “elective” under the most serious of situations, like – “the tumor might be cancerous, but it’s up to you whether you want to have it removed.” I cannot think of any other situation where you can request a doctor perform such a major procedure (other than plastic surgery). While I don’t want to limit the choices of expectant mothers, I think having an elective c-section because you want the baby to be born on a certain day, or your partner has to go on a business trip soon, etc. is wild. Emergency or unexpected medical situation aside, I can’t believe anyone would electivly undergo such a major operation. I hope I’m not coming off nasty, but I honestly do not get it.

Am on

My first son was delivered by an emergency c-section because I had developed pre-eclampsia that turned into HELP syndrome and my body was shutting down. My mom had me and all my sisters (4 of us) with natural labor, she was a labor & delivery nurse, taught Lamaze in the 80’s & 90’s and it never even occurred to me that I wouldn’t push to deliver my son. I was in shock and if you haven’t had an emergency c-section, you may not understand the disappointment in that.

I know it was medically necessary and am very happy we were both okay, but I wanted to be the one pushing him into this world. I was actually depressed about it and still perterbed that I didn’t get to try. My second son was a VBAC after my water broke and I was given Petocin to speed up my contractions after 12 hours at 2cm.

Both deliveries hurt in very different ways. I understand that emergencies happen and c-sections are necessary but it is a big surgery. And in my mind women have been giving birth for thousands of years and I wanted to do that too. I’m glad my c-section went well and my oldest is wonderful. I’m glad I had the chance to experience the amazingly incredible experience of pushing and bringing my child into the world! Everyone should do what is best for them because we all live our own lives.

Thanks for sharing!

Anne on

I had a c-section and not by choice. I had an epidurel and probably given too much, so I could not feel myself pushing. Either way, it didn’t really matter because I had only one child. I did not have enough anesthetic and saw the doctors ready to cut me but could not talk due to a tube in my mouth to suck out the saliva and couldn’t catch my breath. I was absolutely petrefied but I fortunately passed out. The doctors did agree that it can happen.

kate on

It’s interesting because I was a C-Section birth and my mother says that I was the best birthing experience because of the LACK of pain.?! I suppose it’s different for everyone.

She had my brother and sister naturally and stated that it was traumatic and she didn’t really get a chance to witness the birth calmly due to the pain.

I guess you have to do whatever works for you.
Different strokes for different folks. Right?

aurora mia on

I think that she is so pretty and they are going to be such laid back parents.

With regard to the c section, I almost have to disagree. I just had a baby 12 weeks ago and I am 40. I elected to have a planned c section because I didnt want 60 hours of labor. Due to my age and my high risk pregnancy, I was certain that I would end up in an emergency situation and have to have one anyways. I feel like I should be a poster child for c sections. It was a breeze. And I am 40. I didnt do any extra prep. I had been on bedrest for the last 3 months of my pregnancy so I couldnt exercise…but I was recovered in 4 days. It could just be me, but I also hope other women, that it’s not that scary. If I get the opportunity to do this again, I would in a second! I support Lily’s views!

carie on

It is different for everyone. What’s good for you might not be good for someone else. Which is why I don’t see why the women attack each other non-stop on this site…this is the cattiest site/comments section ever!

paula on

At the hospital where my daughter was born (a major teaching hospital in the Pacific Northwest) they won’t do elective c-sections so I am surprised to hear they can be arranged so easily. I have lots of friends who had c-sections for medical reasons and some had easy recoveries and some did not. The worst case seems to be when a mother exhausted from a long unproductive labor ends up needing a c-section. I also think that the emotional impact of really counting on a vaginal delivery and ending up with a surgical delivery can hinder recovery. Maybe preparing emotionally in advance for that possibility should be part of a birthing plan.

momoftwo on

I had an emergency c-section with my son due to a botched induction. I was so glad that he was alive, even with his CP he is a joy. The recovery was horrendous. When I became pregnant with my daughter I knew I wanted a VBAC. And I had one, after 2 hrs of intense labour. The recovery was so different I could hardly believe it. I agree that medically necessary c-sections saves lives, but to elect to have one for non-medical reasons is, in my humble opinion, a bit silly.

Bella on


Lorus on

I had two planned c-sections because both of my daughters were breech (footling and frank). Hopefully #3 won’t be as stubborn and will be head down so I can experience a natural birth!

Gigi on

ive had 2 csetions (not elected) and the first one, like camila said….was a painful and a long recovery. but for my second, nearly a decade later, im guessing medicine came a little ways since than, because it was close to painless and i was up showering and walking exactly 24 hours later, with a huge smile on my face. it was the best birthing experience ever….so i have nothing bad to say about csections.
so, you have a scar, who really cares? i know my husband didnt!

yogadaisy on

I think for lots of women, myself included and obviously Camila, experiencing a natural vaginal birth is a very important and powerful thing. Laboring, working with a partner, focusing and turning inward and pushing your baby out are all a vital part of birth. It connects us with our ancestors who all labored naturally. It is very empowering not to mention the many positive health benefits (both physical and mental) for both mom and baby.

I realize it’s a choice but I feel that moms who have c-sections miss out on this aspect of birth. Some may not care, though!

alycia on

poooooooooooooooooooooop!! baby pooooooop! yum! Levi iscute! i think he looks only like camilla! poooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooop

Renee on

I feel bad for her that the birth didn’t go the way they plan. I do support women choosing whatever way they want to bring their child into the world. If they have discussed things with their doctor and feel comfortable with that decision, why should they be concerned what others think about it. Do what’s best for you and your family.

Mel Girl on

For Camila and other c/s moms who were disappointed at not having a natural birth – ICAN (the International Cesarean Awareness Network) is a great resource for women recovering emotionally or physically from a c/s. We’ve all been there, done that and can understand the disappointment and the desire to heal. If you don’t have a chapter close-by (or you are a celebrity and would like your privacy!) you can sign up and participate in the online community. It’s a great place to learn about VBAC and figure out how to have one if you want one. Most doctors try to scare women out of having VBACs because it’s so much simpler for them to just do another surgery (even though all the medical research shows that it is as safe, if not safer than repeat cesareans. Yes, I know about uterine rupture, but do you know about cesarean-related blood clots, infections, bleeding, and respiratory distress for your baby??). More than 300 hospitals actually ban VBAC, essentially coercing women into surgery they do not need. It’s sad that women get pushed around like that. Even sadder that more women aren’t raising holy hell about having their birth choices stolen from them!!

Kademsmom on

I agree with the whole thing about elected c-sections but just like someone said different strokes for different folks. My first baby was born vaginally and it was terrible. The epidural caused my heart to race and almost pass out and not to mention the pain I felt. I pushed for an hour and a half and tore myself up getting him out all 8.4 pounds of him.

I am scheduled for a c-section tomorrow actually and I was a little disappointed when I found out the baby was sideways and not head down and needed one but now I have accepted it and hope to have a positive experience. I would rather have him by c-section than try to get a baby out that is in the wrong position. It is better for him and myself. so yeah when you need one you just need one.

I also think it is so much better when it is planned than when it is an emergency situation or when a women has labored for way too long to have the outcome be a c-section is very disappointing.

Michelle on

My first child was a C-section after 38 hours of labor. (She would not drop) My second child was automatically scheduled as a C-section and I thank God she was because when they took her out, the cord was wrapped so tightly around her neck, they say it probably would’ve strangled her if I had tried to push. I’ve heard of people having better recoveries then I did and I’ve heard of people having worse recoveries — I think that just depends on the individual. Yes, it would have been nice if I had been able to experience a vaginal birth, but having my babies be born healthy and all right was the most important thing to me.

Jackie on

I haven’t had children yet, but this is just my opinion. Maybe I won’t feel like this when the time comes, but I want to go through the whole birthing experience without drugs (although I’m not ruling them out) After all, women have been doing it that way for eons now. If I had to have a c-section because of complications, of course I would. I remember when Britney Spears said she had elective c-sections because her mom said childbirth was the most painful thing she had ever gone through. Since when has childbirth been not painful? Now those kinds of reasons are the ones I think are dumb for opting for a c-section.

Gigi on


Jessica on

I would hate for mothers to be to be afraid of a C section… I had one after being induced and nothing happening, and it was honestly no big deal! May sound crazy but within hours of the surgery I was up … of course not too comfortable 5 hours after surgery, but I was up… around 12 hours after surgery I was in the shower… and according to the docs it looked like i had never given birth.. I would say don’t be afraid of C sections. The recovery is not that bad (at last mine was not) and I would do it all over again! I have a healthy baby.. !! That is all you can wish for! No matter how you deliver your baby… it is an amazing experience.. and mine was filled with no pain! .. and a healthy little one.. Will do it again! : )

Kat on

People seem to forget that what was important, empowering, and vital for them is something different for someone else.

The birth of a child via c-section can be just as meaningful and empowering as a vaginal birth is for another women. Making assumptions about what isn’t important to other women, their level of education, and assuming they got duped into something is disempowering and frankly, mysogynistic.

Sure, give your opinions, but remember, you can only speak to what is right for you, not what is right for every person.

Kris Depenbrock on

My daughter is 14 months old and she was delivered via emergency c-section. I was disappointed not have experienced her birth in a more personal way (especially after my husband and I sat through 4 weeks of childbirth classes) but her safety was our top priority. I recovered very quickly so aside from feeling like I missed out on a unique, intimate moment , I am pleased with our birthing experience. When we decide to have baby number two in the future, I will get to decide whether to try a VBAC or schedule a c-section. Those last few weeks of waiting and wondering when labor would begin were stressful so we might go the route of c-section again but this time elective!!! LOL 🙂

jenn on

The common thread I noticed is how different everyone’s experience was. So it’s hard to say which one is the preferred method. I had my son a year ago and at some point during my 2nd hour of active labor, I became this stubborn woman who felt she had fought for 38 hours to have this child and was not going to quit to a csection. No matter what the DR said. The told me after that they were scared of me. I had no idea who that woman was. I had my child and felt him rip right thru me. 3rd degree tears. it took me 3 months to walk right. I had to be restitched and will eventually undergo repairs to my “girl” area. on hindsight, i wish i had listened and opted for the csection. I didn’t get a ribbon for delivering my child vaginally. And i walked away with scars, just in a place where only me, my dr and my husband can see 🙂 I think it should be mom’s preference. I would be the last person to think less of anyone who opted for either. But I will say…LISTEN TO YOUR DR.

Ash on


Unfortunately, many women are “duped” into having c-sections when they really don’t need one. That’s what is so appalling. Obviously the health of the baby is the most important thing, but I get disgusted when I hear people say thoughtless things like, “So who cares if you needed a c-section? At least everything turned out okay.” Yes, that’s true, but I think it’s difficult for some people to understand the desire for a vaginal birth. It’s an experience that’s extremely important to some women so it’s sad how other people often try to downplay that. That’s probably a big reason why some women feel so depressed after their c-sections. They feel like they were deprived of that whole process. A vaginal birth may not be a priority to everyone but it is for many women. Minimizing their feelings won’t help anything.

Sasha on

I really like how they emphasize that they are a family now. Levi is a lucky little guy!

Kat on

I think you missed my point. The point I was trying to make is that while diminishing someone’s desire for a vaginal birth isn’t appropriate, neither is implying that women who are ok with their c-sections or who chose their c-sections were either uneducated or too lazy to opt for a vaginal birth. It isn’t one or the other. It does women a great disservice to look at things that way. It’s not for us to decide if a woman was duped or if she clung too tightly to her vaginal birth plan.

Why can’t women just support the choices that other women make without implying that they were somehow wrong or that they should feel bad about their experience? Birth can be empowering no matter how it happens, and people need to respect and acknowledge that.

My original post was directed at yogadaisy who basically implied that for women who chose a c-section, the birth itself and the experience wasn’t important or empowering, and that is simply not for her to decide.

Aya on

I agree with Camilla. Why anyone would choose to have the surgery when it isn’t necessary is beyond me.I understand for medical reasons.My friend (who is due very close to me) keeps trying to convince me to have one like she is. It seems ridiculous to go through such a surgery just because you think your vagina will be “ruined” or for any other trivial reasons, but to each her own I guess. My baby will be induced because of preeclampsia issues, if that results in a c-section, that is fine with me.All I want is a healthy baby and I think that is all that matters.

monika on

it doesnt take 6 to 8 wks to recover, thats ridiculous. oh and brazil has a huge percentage for c-sections.

Norma on

People like Camila Alves need to get over the whole c-section deal. I’ve had 4 surgeries in my lifetime (gall bladder removal, appendix removal, tonsills removed and a c-section 3 years ago) so I don’t think having ‘surgery’ is some horrendous thing that is sooo unbearable. Yeah, recovery is a little uncomfortable, but it’s not out of this world pain. I think women who think the pain after a c-section is ‘horrible’ are probably very sensitive to begin with and don’t have a high threshold for pain period. Having a baby come out of your body (vaginally or by c-section) are two very powerful experiences. I don’t think you need to neccessarily push your kid out from ‘down there’ to feel whole. You’ve carried this child for 9 months–if that’s not a connection, I don’t know what is.

Also, what I find amazing is how so many women have no problem getting tummy tucks, breast augmentation or any other cosmetic surgery (before or even after giving birth), but when it comes to having a baby, surgery to a lot of women is then ‘taboo’ or a disappointment. I rather have a scar from giving birth, than from being vain and having a bigger bust size.

Again, I don’t think women ‘elect’ to have c-sections for the heck of it, but if their bodies don’t cooperate or the medical situation calls for it, don’t be ashamed. Bring on the knife and do your job, doc. Screw the scar and the ‘inconvenience’ of post-op recovery–love your baby and be proud of what your body created.

h williams on

carie at Sep 18, 2008 2:58:38 PM
I don’t know why so many women make such a big deal about c-sections like it’s unnatural or a bad way to have your child be born. I’m pregnant now and if I had to have one, I wouldn’t stress about it or have to find some ‘peace’ about it. That baby got in your body one way and has to come out one way or another–does it really matter how?

how can you ever make that comment if you never been through it??, if you had to have major surgery and sonme said said big deal lots of people have it, how would you feel? my c section was a cat 1 emergancy that has taken over a year to fully recover from, i had flash back, nightmares, infection and almost lost so much blood after i was threatend with blood tranfusions, although i am always greatful my baby came out ok and is wonderfully healthy i cannot let go of the fact som people have such a small mind, c section hurt, can have a negative effect on your mind, they can mess up breast feeding and also the worst, make you feel like you failed.

it is a big deal, its major surgery, don’t speak if you have no idea what your speaking about. it does matter to a degree, you want to be ok after too, yes getting the baby out is important but don’t forget about the woman giving birth, does she not count? i think alot of people forget about the mother, sh is of equal importance to the baby, if cutting her open can be avioded it should be, if not she should get as much support as she can just like any one else who has surgery would get.

DLR on

That is so scary to hear Camila went for sixty hours of labour just because she wanted to experience a “natural birth.” Didn’t she realize she was putting her child at risk especially that he came out of the uterus with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck? I do understand how women want the whole birth experience and all, but for heaven’s sake, sixty hours of undue stress on the baby?
Matthew and Camila are incredibly lucky they didn’t end up with a severely disabled child that had been strangled by the umbilical cord or had their skull crushed by the vacuum suction just because they wanted to go the “natural way.” Thousands and thousands of babies died in childbirth before Western medicine came along with the c-section, so if a woman wants to have a c-section then good on her and she shouldn’t be made to feel she is any less of a woman because she didn’t push a watermelon out her vagina. If a woman that wanted to deliver vaginally has to have a c-section she shouldn’t beat herself up over it.

Atlanta on

I suggest that all women, especially Cary, watch this documentary: “THE BUSINESS OF BEING BORN.” There ARE major differences between a natural child birth and “intervention.” Yes, there are circumstances which require C-Sections; but women in the US need to truly be “educated” and understand the importance of a natural childbirth to their baby and to themselves.

meghan on

just had a c-section 4 days ago… it was a repeat c-section. we had been hoping for a vbac – but i never went into labor on my own and couldn’t be induced due to the risk of uterine rupture. the recovery was much easier than my emergency c-section – but still – the experience was miserable. i wish i could have had a vaginal delivery.

Emily on

I was in labor for 12 hours and was only dilated to 2cm. My baby’s heartrate started dropping during each contraction so they decided to do an emergency c-section. I was scared, but who isn’t scared when faced with an unknown situation? Everything went very well, my baby was born healthy and my recovery was very fast. I do not regret having a c/s in any way. However, I have been made to feel almost guilty about how well I got along. My mom even goes so far as to call it “not a true birth experience”. My husband seemed to think I was being ridiculous when I asked for help with anything afterward and when I pointed out that I had just given birth, his response was “yeah, but you didn’t do anything.”
I find these reactions strange because my family is generally very helpful and sympathetic but I was being treated like I took the lazy way out and should be punished for it.
That being said, I’m due this February and plan on having another c/s as I feel that’s what’s right for me.
Was anybody else treated like this having giving birth?

Jenna on

I understand that women wish to experience the non-surgical way of giving birth but sometimes you need to put those feelings aside for the health of your baby. Birth, in itself, is still a natural wonder and an absolute miracle in itself, surgical or natural. My situation was unique. I had been in labor (cervix slowly dilating than contracting again) since I was about 14 weeks along and had to be on bed rest for the rest of my pregnancy. I was actually relieved to have my section because I was so tired and with the other complications I had, I was deeply worried about my little girl. I just wanted her out safely and I did not care how that happended. I was actually more concerned to have a natural birth due to the stress on both of us. I was 23 and the first of my girlfriends to have children so I really didn’t have anyone to ask other than my mom or my lamaze coach. I recovered extremely quickly; much more quickly than the two girls down the hall who had episiotomies, and did not have any issues at all other than the gas they pump into you. Gosh, was that the most painful thing ever! LOL The only complaint I had was that the hospital treated me only as a surgical patient and not a mom, so even though I had in room care, they would not take her in the middle of the night and not wake me, but would to take my vitals. More than once, I had a war with the nurses. It left me panic stricken to wake and find her gone with no communications. I would run down the hall at all hours. Finally, I had to file complaints. They also, upon her birth would not tell me anything about her so I did not know if she was okay for hours. So, my first day was horrendous and that took a while to get over. I was deeply angered at being treate din such a way. It turned out though, a few years later, that it was just the hospital and their policies, not a universal way to treat surgical moms. For that, I was grateful for all the other moms after me, but I do hope that I made some changes in the hospital itself with my filing of multiple complaints- and I not not a complainer at all- far from it. I had and still do not have any regrets about her birth other than that.
What is important in the end is the safety of our children’s birth and the care they recieve soon after.

Steph on

If you read what she said, it’s that she doesn’t understand why you would elect to have a C-Section…that’s all. I have had one of each, my first being natural birth to a 9 lb. 15 oz., 24 inches long baby girl! While that labor was difficult and long I would prefer it to my C-section for my 9 lb. second baby girl…which wasn’t elective. I figured I would have no problem going natural especially having already delivered such a large baby, but I developed gestational diabetes the second time around and the doc thought her shoulders might be too wide to pass. The recovery was much more difficult for the Section but you do what you have to do for your children and yourself. Either way as long as you have people to help you and your kids are healthy there really is no difference.

Lux on

It’s amazing to see how this topic is always a hot topic, no matter the country or the language, everytime you have “natural birth Vs. c-section” (elective or neccesaries) you will have a lot of women giving their opinion or telling their stories. Birth power I guess! no matter how ; )
I’m happy that Camila is peaceful about her C-section, I’m also very happy she is breastfeeding successfully and that they will raise the baby bilingual.
And it is obvious that, if possible, natural birth is the BEST thing for everybody, but if something is going wrong…that’s why c-section exists.

limecolleen on

My first was 9lb 8oz, natural birth, with forceps & 4th degree tear. It was very traumatic! I never questioned my decision to have a c-section if and when I had another child.
When that time came, trusting my instinct was the right thing to do. My second child’s arrival by c-section left me with no regrets.
I know some degree of recovery with all childbirth is normal, but I have to say for me the c-section left me with much less painful healing.

angie on

For all that are saying that our ancestors have been giving birth naturally I have to say the rate of mortality both mother and baby was higher than nowadays, think about it before satanize a c-section, I had one for an emergency, it was a painful recovery, but I have no scar, and my baby is alive, thank god!

cp66434 on

It always depends on the reason for a surgery. I think you’re pretty ignorant. I had an emergency c-section after 14 hours of labor and a repeat cesarean because I was forced by the doctors. And I also had a breast reduction b/c my bust went up from size 34C to 36 F (I am 4 ft 10!)!!! It certainly was not vain to get a reduction done. I had lots of back pain and that at the age of 20!
Everybody is different. I wish I would have had a vbac, but so what?
Stop judging people!

milkinmama on

Finally a celeb who knows what a vagina is for! To birth babies! Good for her. Vaginal births are so empowering and the recovery is so much easier. And she is breast feeding. Such a shocker for celebrities. Finally someone who knows that formula is NASTY!

Smokering on

It’s refreshing to see a celebrity who isn’t part of the ‘too posh to push’ brigade! Yes, C-sections can be lifesaving, but they have also been associated with worse breastfeeding outcomes, babies who hit developmental milestones later, and infant respiratory problems. The immunological and sensory benefits a baby receives by being squeezed through the birth canal should not be dismissed. C-sections also pose some risks to the mother, including nerve damage which can numb the abdominal/pubic region.

A friend of mine recently had an emergency C-section against her will; she was literally begging them not to do it. While in her case it was probably necessary, she was extremely traumatized by the experience. Telling women they should ‘get over it’ is frankly insulting–while a C-section may be a blissful choice for some women, for others it equates to being sliced open, not getting to see their babies been born, and having the endorphin rush of natural birth taken from them. It *is* a big deal, and I’m glad that Camila is at peace with her decision. I know if my labour had turned into a C-section I would have been devastated–good on her for being philosophical!

Keisha Castle-Hughes is another celebrity who champions natural birth, IIRC.

Renee on

After reading these comments, I have to ask why do women judge other women so harshly? If some women choose to do an c-section. it’s their business. They shouldn’t have to worry about people saying negative things about them celebrity or not. What do people think will happen by saying things such as she was “too posh to push”?

JJ on

I am a RN. Most people don’t realize that 1 out of 3 babies have a nuchal cord (cord wrapped around something). It typically isn’t a big deal. I think a lot of doctors use it to scare women to “hurry up” the delivery process. I have seen it first hand. It is 11pm at night, and a woman has pushed for 2 hours. The doctors calls for a C-section b/c the cord is wrapped around the neck, even though the baby looks fine on the monitor.

I wanted to have a natural childbirth too. I ended up having to get induced for pre-eclampsia. I had already been contracting for 1 day, but they wanted to speed it up due to my blood pressure. The pitocin was HORRIBLE. 100 times the pain of natural birth. I ended up getting an epidural, which I later regretted. Not sure what I will do with the next one. Hopefully, no need for pitocin!

The bottom line-don’t feel bad about how the baby gets out! Just be happy that they are healthy!!!

Aya on

JJ, I completely agree. That sounds exactly like what happened with my friend.It was late and the doctor said that she needed a c-section after 3 hours.She didn’t know any better and she agreed.She had a horrible time healing and her mom had to come live with her for almost a year. This has scarred her experience and now she doesn’t want any more children at all.

dd on

This family is so sweet, I had never heard of her before she dated him. They are the cutest couple and Levi is a doll. It sounds like she really tried to do it naturally, no drugs for 14 hours! What a trooper.

The thing that makes me so angry is when doctors try to convince you to have a c-section for no real reason. Mine did that. He had me convinced that I wasn’t going to be able to have a vaginal birth. He knew how important a vaginal birth was for me and it seemed like he didn’t care. He kept saying my cervix was too posterior and it would be impossible. He is known for doing a lot of sections in my area, but I didn’t know that til later and I didn’t want to change doctors at the end of my pregnancy. I begged him to give it one more week when I was 38 weeks, he agreed but told me to prepare myself for a c-section the next week because he knew it would happen. I was so determined to do it on my own, I walked everyday, drove around because that always made me contract, I did everything I could think of to make my daughter come on her own!! Sure enough, my water broke at home when I was laying in bed at 38 weeks, 6 days. I labored for 11 hours and she came out after 45 minutes of pushing and no problems at all. Luckily my dr was away on vacation and the dr who delivered her was absolutely amazing.

I just hear so many stories from nurses who say that some doctor’s try to convince you to have a c-section because it works for their schedule better. They can plan their vacations and spend more time with their family, or sleep more because they aren’t getting calls in the middle of the night from patients in labor, they don’t have to wait around for hours until the pushing starts. I’ve even heard of some who scare you with things like, “your vagina will never feel or look the same if you give birth vaginally”, that’s insane to me!!! I read Christina Aguilera(sp?) said she was afraid of tearing and opted for a section. That just seems really vain to me. Of course we are all afraid of what happens down there haha, but that is such a silly reason to have a major surgery in my opinion. I tore, but I don’t care, that’s what kegels are for. I guess everybody really is different, so whatever works for you and gets you a healthy baby! I just didn’t appreciate the pressure I felt to just go ahead and do the section, especially after another dr told me that the cervix stays posterior until it thins out and what my dr was telling me made no sense.

Cricket on

Yes, Camila seems very sweet but her situation with her baby and Matt are not the norm and she’s very lucky in that respect. Most of us live in the real world. Also, those of you who have had c-sections (or not) and are dogging them…you and your baby are probably alive today because of a c-section and if you lived a hundred years ago, you and your baby would probably be dead and you wouldn’t have the opportunity to be “disappointed”.

Pencils on

I’m due on Tuesday. I have nothing invested in a vaginal birth, other than the recovery should be easier and that is, of course, to be desired. The miracle of birth is the fact that I created this little girl out of nearly nothing, just a couple of microscopic cells. How I squeeze her out of my body–or how she’s cut and lifted out–is just mechanics. In my opinion. But then I’ve had a severe chronic pain condition for years and pain gets real old after awhile. There’s nothing mystical or even useful about pain, except when it warns you to take your hand off a hot pot. I’ll be taking whatever pain relief is on offer.

I don’t believe that doctors try to talk you into C-sections so they can make their golf games. If they do advise a C-section, it’s because they are truly concerned for your health and the health of your baby. I don’t understand who started this false adversarial relationship between doctors and patients, but I have my suspicions. You go to an OB for nine or ten months–if you don’t trust him or her, switch! I go to a large practice with six doctors, and I trust all of them with my life and the life of my unborn daughter. If I didn’t, they wouldn’t be my doctors.

rowanbb on

This is all so ridiculous! I cannot understand why women get so upset about having a c-section. Being in unbearable pain does NOT make you a “stronger” woman. I have had 4 surgeries in 2.5 yrs after breaking my leg. I had an upper tibia plateau fracture and had to be hospitalized for a month. The pain was unbearable for days. Trust me, it didn’t make me stronger, just exhausted. When I have kids, it is c-section all the way! I have had enough physical pain to last a lifetime.

LNC on

The article was great, and I wish Camilla and the entire family all of the best.

Most of the comments, on the other hand, disgust me. LISTEN TO YOUR INSTINCTS. Not society; not vain ‘too posh to push’ attitudes; not someone who is more concerned about their liability and convenience than they are about your or your baby’s health; not the care providers that cut open 1 out of 3 pregnant women; not the care providers that episiotomy, vacuum, forcep, and force those who are able to escape a cesarean to push in unphysiological positions causing distress, slow progression and tearing. . . you need to listen to YOUR INSTINCTS and that is that.

And we wonder why the US has such TERRIBLE maternal and fetal DEATH rates: it’s the attitude that’s widely accepted about intervened birth and cesareans. MORE intervention does not equate better or safer.

Sue on

And LNC, maybe you could try being less judgemental and disrespectful to the choices and experiences of women that don’t mirror yours.

And people need to stop this “too posh to push” thing. I have NEVER heard ANY women make a decision about a c-section based on this! It’s rude, it’s disrespectful, and ridiculously arrogant and judgemental.

CelebBabyLover on

rowanbb- You may prefer a C-section, but some women simply don’t want them. I, for example, have no desire to ever have a C-section should I have children. The thought of someone cutting me open and messing around with my insides just makes me shudder!

Not to mention (and I know this is pretty silly), the thought of not being able to feel my lower body frightens me! Anyway, just because you might be fine with a C-section doesn’t mean all women are! I also don’t think it’s unreasonable for a woman to feel let down because her body was unable to do what should come naturally.

Sue- I don’t think LNC was trying to be judgemental of women’s birth choices. She and I (along with some of the other commentors) simply don’t understand why a woman would choose to have MAJOR surgery when it isn’t neccesary!

C-sections are great and even life-saving when they are neccesary. I am all for those types of C-sections (I myself was born via medically neccesary C-section).

However, I am definently NOT for elective or “doctor demanded” C-sections. Doctors don’t seem to realize or care that not all C-sections are neccesary. As another commentor has pointed out, a nuchal cord (when the cord is wrapped around the neck) doesn’t always have to mean C-section.

Even a baby in a breech position doesn’t have to mean a C-section (my mother, who was footling breech, is living proof of that!).

I don’t know about you, but I don’t like the fact that most doctors seem to think it’s okay to perform MAJOR ABDOMINAL SURGERY when it isn’t neccesary! I mean, imagine if someone asked you if you’d like medically unneccesary surgery. In most cases, you’d probably say “NO WAY!!!”

Aya on

Yes,it sounds dumb when you put it that way that the DR is trying to push a c-section on you just to make a golf game.The truth is that it happens. Example ? My baby is due on the christmas holiday. This has really really given me problems trying to get an OB.My family doctor kept trying to refer me to all these different doctors, and no one would take me.Now, at almost 7 months, I have met my OB for the first time last week.Many doctors I saw before would not take me because I was totally against having an elective c-section, especially so early as 36.5 weeks.I wanted to hold out and be induced at least at 38 weeks.I felt stupid having to sit there and negotiate with them. One DR was very rude and said that “just because I didn’t mind spending christmas in the hospital, doesn’t mean that everyone else wanted to be there” under her breath. I felt bad because I understand many of them have families and that christmas is an important time, it just sucks for people like me, especially when they can pick and choose patients to go with their lifestyle.So for some people, finding a doctor may not be as easy as you think. It took me 6 months to find a doctor that would take me.So late on in the game, I think i’m gonna settle for what I have and try to make the best of it.

sue on

Sorry CBL, LNC herself makes a comment about “vain, too posh to push” attitudes. So she was being judgemental.

I would much much prefer to have a vaginal delivery over a c-section anyday. But the fact is that I can not judge the choices of other women based on what I want for myself. And that seems to be what so many people here are doing. Do I fully understand why a woman would opt for an elective c-section when a vaginal delivery is feasible? No, but it’s not my body and not my choice. I decide what is right for my body and my family, and I respect other women enough to do the same without being judgemental about their choices.

kirstin on

However they come out…as long as they (and you) are happy and hralthy…that is all that matters!!

CelebBabyLover on

Sue- Actually, she was more or less stating a fact. Some celebs DO have C-sections because they are basically “too posh to push”.

For example, both Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera had elective C-sections because they were afraid of the pain of a vaginal birth.

Renee on

CBL, they have that right. I don’t understand why you think making hurtful comments about them is going to persuade other women to not have c-sections. Why are you even concerned about it? It’s their body, not yours

Sue on

Being afraid of the pain (which is fairly normal and expected) is not the same as being “too posh to push”.

The phrase itself is judgemental, it isn’t for us to decide or judge a women’s reasons.

CelebBabyLover on

Renee- I am concerned about it for two reasons:

1. The C-section rate in the U.S. is way, way too high.

2. By having elective C-sections, celebs are putting their babies in danger. A C-section is MAJOR surgery, and like any other MAJOR surgery, they carry risks. Why expose yourself and your baby to unneccesary risks?

Anyway, that said, I certainly don’t think my comments are going to persuade other women not to have C-sections. I’m just sharing my opinion on the matter (and when I said that Britney and Christina had elective C-sections because they were afraid of the pain of vaginal birth, I wasn’t criticizing them. I was just stating a fact).

Obviously you have your opinion and I have mine. Let’s agree to disagree and leave it at that.

Sue- You do have a point, I guess. I guess I think of “too posh to push” as not wanting to mess up your nether regions (which was basically the case with Christina, who was afraid she’d tear). One actress (I forgot her name, but she has two daughters, and one’s name is Rose) even said that she had C-sections to “preserve her vagina”.

Anyway, like with Renee and I, let’s just agree to disagree and leave it at that.

CelebBabyLover on

I did a little digging around in the CBB archives, and Mary McCormak is the woman I was referring to earlier. Her exact quote was that she had C-sections to “‘preserve’ my vagina and to avoid the ‘bullshit’ vaginal birth can cause, such as incontinence.”

aci on

She should come to give birth in Romania as an ordinary person and she’ll learn why some women prefer the C-section. Giving birth naturally here could submit the child to a lot of risks, your doctor doesn’t atend you if it’s not his shift, the midwifes are rude and unconcerned, the father is not allowed in the delivery, the epidural is not very well known, etc… If you want attention and care, you do a C-section