In just under 2 weeks I’m going to be having a baby. I’ve resisted blogging about it here because while having children, child rearing, parenting, birthing, and all the facets tied up with it (consumption, children-in-the-world, industrial capitalism, gender dynamics, etc) are Feminist issues, I’m still on the fence as to where I stand regarding my feminist experience and the whole “having a baby”-thing: I just haven’t felt I have anything really coherent or “new” to add to the literature.
But, my opinions and responses to my experience slowly trickle in and form, often in response to people’s reactions/comments or responses to parenthood/motherhood/birthing in the media and government policy.
There’s a big “to-do” going on out here in BC about ultrasounds and the recent addition of policy that will require a $50 fee from expectant parents to find out the sex of their fetus. Basically, in BC it was hit or miss if you could find out from an ultra-sound technician what your fetus’s sex is. We wanted to find out the sex of our fetus primarily to have an answer when we were/are consistently inundated with the question, “what are you having?” (sarcastic answer, “a baby?”). And then feeling pressured to say which way you’d prefer (“I don’t really care as long as their not a facist”). And then having to endure people’s gendered biases like, “Girls are so much harder than boys”. But, at both of our ultrasounds the technician (same technician both times) wouldn’t tell us (“we’re not allowed to tell”) and made us avert our eyes of the screen. Neither of these things disappointed me or frustrated me, as the medical system + pregnancy is all new to me, so hey, whatever, it’s got 4 limbs, a beating heart, and kidneys! Success!