As most of the television-watching world knows now, the Duggars now have their first grandchild--Mackynzie Renee Duggar--daughter of oldest son Josh and his relatively new wife Anna. According to the news reports, they couple welcomed their new baby in their home with a midwife and doula in attendance. While on some levels, I applaud this, I also wonder where it may lead.
In the Quiverfull movement is a smaller subset known as freebirthers. They begin having babies at home with a medically trained midwife and/or doula but then progress eventually to completely unassisted births with only the father "catching". Some people would say that this is fine, given that millions of women in other countries especially do this everyday. However, consider the recent case of Carri Chmielewski...she had an unassisted homebirth. She ignored all of the warning signs that it was a difficult pregnancy and looked to be a difficult birth by saying that God would protect her and the baby. The result was that the baby died and Carri ended up in the hospital in critical condition.
Freebirthing may not be an issue in many cases where the parents are well-prepared and knowledgeable and the birth is unproblematic. However, in cases such as the Chmielewskis, there are obvious issues.