“Pitocin is the most abused drug in the world today.” ~Roberto Caldreyo-Barcia, MD

I feel so very sad when I see pitocin being given to a woman for induction or augmentation of labor. I will not argue that there might be legitimate times it is needed…but I still feel sad.

I always wonder if I, as a doula, have given this woman enough information about this harsh, harsh drug. Even though they say it is chemically the same as our natural drug, oxytocin, it does not treat our body, or our baby, the same. In addition, it disrupts the natural processes in so many ways.

I suppose I feel so very sad because it reminds me that I was given pitocin 33 years ago. I did not even know what was going on, much less that I had the right to ask…or dare say no.

Thank God that my child does not seem to have any side effects that are being associated with pitocin, such as ADHD or Autism. Nor does he have brain damage due to loss of oxygen when the cord became entangled as he twisted desperately against the harsh contractions. He does still have the grey patch of hair where the internal monitor was screwed into his scalp.

I, however, was not unscathed. Even though my baby was in the best of positions prior to the pitocin, as he tried to escape the drug induced  contractions, he kept landing against my lower spine. As a result, I have Degenerative Disc Disease, Arthritis, and Spinal Stenosis, all of which are progressive.

In addition, these harsh contractions kept my baby’s head pushing, pushing so very hard against my cervix, which was just not ready to open because it was just not time. The result of this violation was abnormal, pre-cancerous, cervical cells. After many procedures to prevent the path to cancer, I ultimately had a hysterectomy. It was then found that my equally violated uterus had not one, but two, tumors that had not been present prior to my labor and delivery.

No more babies for me, but at least I would be here to watch my one child grow up, get married, and hopefully have the large family he, and I, have always wanted so much.

I am not a medical doctor. I do not pretend to be one. I just feel so sad when I see a woman being given pitocin.

Kenny Shulman CD(DONA)

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