Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Asinine Assessments

"I don't wanna open up my eyes, I don't wanna see what you have done to me, I don't wanna know what's under your disguise. And I don't need to see what's on the inside" ~ Esthero

Pregnancy in the 21st century = assessments, tests, procedures, screenings

I'm sitting here trying to avoid looking up my recent 2nd trimester blood screening results online. People have told me to stay away. Don't go there. It will just make you more stressed. So I'm trying my damnedest. Even though it's really hard to not look this stuff up. That's what I always do when I'm concerned about something. Go online, see what I can find out, do a bit of research. I'm a researcher! It's what I do! But I don't want to make myself crazy with the infinite range of results that could come up.

Two friends who had kids in the 20th century told me about not being screened for all of these possible ailments and disorders while pregnant. They just didn't offer them. I see the positive and the negative in that. Now we are better informed (supposedly). We can make more educated decisions about our pregnancies. Or if we choose to terminate them. It's a really terrible position to be put in, though, and I never want to experience that. For anyone who has had to make that incredibly challenging decision, I have much respect and sympathy for you.

But on the negative side, do all of these assessments just create more stress? How accurate are they really? And for the ones that are reportedly close to 100% accurate, there are real risks to consider. I don't want to say that I'd refuse any of the standard tests and screenings they recommend, but I can't help but wonder how so many people were able to have healthy babies back in the day. I guess I really don't know the statistics and how many more healthy babies we're able to birth nowadays. I think it's just frustrating. The vagueness of some of these screenings. The inaccuracies and false positives I've heard about. Even how wrong they always seem to be at estimating the weight your baby will be at birth.

The stress. The unnecessary stress. And just another potential detriment to the baby growing inside of you.

Really, I'm trying to make myself feel better. I want to believe there's something wrong with the aggressive, seemingly over-sensitive assessments. And not with my baby. Please. Not with my baby.

1 comment:

  1. I did the blood screening for both my pregnancies. With the 1st pregnancy, I found out I had gestational diabetes. For the 2nd pregnancy, it was a little bit more problematic. But they are all in the past now, as I now have 2 healthy boys.
    On retrospect, after all the stresses those screenings brought us, I'm glad I had them.