Caroline Malatesta was not new to giving birth. She was pregnant for the fourth time and had decided to seek out a more natural way to give birth this time around. After finding a hospital that boasted a natural birth experience and empowerment to mothers, she ended up having a very traumatic experience.
Malatesta and her husband decided to give birth at the Brookwood Baptist Medical Center in Birmingham, AL, according to Pop Sugar. This hospital was said to promote a natural delivery while empowering mothers during the experience. That was what Malatesta wanted and had planned with her doctor prior to delivery, but that is far from what she experienced.
Overall, her experience left her with PTSD and a lasting injury. She has since been awarded $16 million in a malpractice suit. It all started after Malatesta went into labor and arrived at the hospital, she was informed that her doctor wasn’t on call, so they started to make changes to her birth plan.
“From that point on, it became a back-and-forth of, ‘But my doctor said I could’ and ‘But you don’t get to.’ The nurse treated me like a disobedient child!” Malatesta wrote in Cosmopolitan.
She said that though she felt more comfortable and more natural on her hands and knees after her water broke, the nurses wouldn’t let her stay like that. They allegedly pulled her wrists out from under her, flipped her around and pinned her down.
As soon as her baby started crowning, the nurse placed her hand on top of the baby’s head and held him in Malatesta’s vagina, preventing him from being born. Six minutes later, the doctor arrived and the nurse let go. This left Malatesta with a nerve condition called Puendal Neuralgia that left her in constant pain, “worse than labor,” for six months.
“This verdict is a wake-up call for hospitals that don’t take women seriously. It’s a wake-up call that they need to review the way they’ve been doing things ad make changes,” Caroline wrote in reference to her lawsuit. “A lot of times hospitals think it’s just ‘silly women’ who want their ‘silly birth experience.’ But it’s more than that. These women that are making these choices are making real, medical decisions.”
Originally posted on Womanista.com