Is Your Pelvis Still trying to Birth Your Baby?
Labor can be such an arduous task. Whether it’s really quick or lasts for days, the impact on the body is huge, especially for the pelvis. It doesn’t matter how long it takes to get the baby out, the pelvis can still be left in its open birthing position. It can remain this way for months to many years.
I first identified this issue in my aunt who had a very traumatic birth with her first son who was 47 years old at the time I found this. Her pelvis was still open from birthing. When I realized what was going on I started looking for it other women who came to see me and was surprised how often I found it.
How do I know if a pelvis is still birthing?
I’m able to feel what the energy of the bones and tissues want to do. I listen to the body and see what wants to happen. No matter what part of the body, an ankle sprain, I can tell you how you twisted your ankle, an injury to your shoulder, leg or pelvis, your body holds onto the energy of the injury. It’s in the tissues and remains there and your body has to work around it. It’s usually not a big deal except most of the time we keep reinjuring it, in the same way. That could because the energy of the injury remains in the tissues until we release it. It could also be why some injuries just never seem to fully heal.
Birthing Pattern in the Pelvis
It’s the same thing with birth and the pelvis. When the pelvis births a baby, the sacrum pivots and in the pushing phase the tailbone moves backwards and the sit bones, or ischiums splay out to the side to get wider. Usually this is the position that most women get stuck in because they tend to have a trauma response in their body from the intensity of the labor. Pushing too long or the baby coming through too quickly can create a shock effect in the tissues and they get stuck in this open birthing position.
I’ve been asking these women whose pelvis’ are still birthing what they are experiencing and the effects have been from severe to subtle. The most common complaint was a sense of feeling ungrounded. Some complained of not being able to sit comfortably or evenly on their buttock. Others had more subtle complaints of feeling spacey, just not the same, or feeling weird when walking. One of the bigger issues women can have from this is painful intercourse and an inability to contract their pelvic floor muscles.
Since all of the pelvic floor muscles attach to the bones of the pelvis, having the bones widened puts a stretch on these muscles. A stretched out muscle doesn’t have the same contraction ability and will appear weak. These lengthened muscles also don’t have the give or flexibility they need in order to allow penetration to happen with intercourse. My aunt I mentioned earlier has very little to almost no contraction of her pelvic floor muscles. Another client I saw was still in a birthing pattern and she was having pain with penetration. After one session of bringing her ischiums back together, her pelvic floor muscles relaxed and she had no more pain!
So what do I do?
It’s a shame that the main treatment for weakened pelvic floor muscles is to see a women’s health physical therapists, yet most of them don’t know how to assess or treat a pelvis stuck in the birthing position. No amount of kegels or biofeedback is going to help you get a strained, traumatized muscle stronger until it gets some help. It’s amazing how instantaneously a muscle can respond and contract when it’s not being lengthened or in a state of shock from the birth.
Most chiropractors don’t know about this stuck birthing pelvis and your doctor will most likely look at you weird if you bring this to their attention. They all are just dealing with the physical tissues that when you look at the tissues everything appears just fine. They aren’t aware of and don’t know how to address the energetics, emotions or trauma that get so tied up into the tissues keeping them held in this birthing pattern. You have to address them all in order for the tissues to release and the pelvis to return to it’s normal pre-birth state.
I have found in working with women that we need to address ALL of the trauma or issues that occurred during the birth so the pelvis can return to it’s birthing position after a treatment. The sooner after the birth one comes in the better. It’s easier to release the birth pattern because it hasn’t been stuck in the body for a length of time for it to think it’s the new normal position to stay in. However no matter how long it’s been you can still release the bones and tissues so they can find their natural place. It’s just takes a bit longer.