Sharing stories of traumatic childbirths online is contributing to a rise in women’s fear of pregnancy and labour, according to an academic.
‘Yes he’s alive but I’m not OK’: the bloody truth about childbirth
Catriona Jones, a midwifery lecturer at the University of Hull who studied tocophobia – defined as a fear of childbirth – said social media plays a part: “If you go on to any of the Mumsnet forums, there are women telling their stories of childbirth – oh, it was terrible, it was a bloodbath, this and that happened. I think that can be quite frightening for women to engage with and read about.”
However, another academic who studied tocophobia and is executive pro-vice-chancellor at the University of Liverpool, Professor Louise Kenny, said: “[Stories] shared in safe environments can be quite healing and informative”.