January 29, 2017, by Cara

Call the Midwife is Back!

It’s that time of year again when my favourite programme comes on TV, Call the Midwife. The first episode aired last Sunday and as usual it failed to disappoint.

While some may say the programme gives an unrealistic view of midwifery, I do believe it provides an insight in to the midwife’s role during the 1950’s and 60’s, showing us just how far the profession has come in a reasonably short space of time. However, I can’t deny that I do love the aesthetics
and soundtrack too!

Petticoats aside, Call the Midwife never fails to show us key events within midwifery as well as highlighting important issues. Before Sunday, writers of the show had revealed the series would look at domestic abuse a
nd female genital mutilation (FGM). Sunday’s heart-wrenching episode threw us in at the deep end and told the story of a woman who suffered domestic violence during pregnancy. It also looked at the difficulty of leaving one’s husband in that era as a result of sexism.

It seems as though there’s a lot more awareness of domestic abuse and the different types of abuse;¬†yet it’s occurrence is still very much prevalent. After completing my community placement I saw first hand how midwives still have many of the same barriers to helping women today as they did in the 1960’s. It is almost impossible to discuss the topic when women attend clinic with partners and if women feel unable or do not wish to disclose abuse to their midwives, abuse can go unnoticed. This results in leaving women and their babies vulnerable.

As with all difficult subjects there is a lot for midwives and student midwives to learn. Therefore, I have decided that after watching each episode I will do some extra research on the topic presented that week in the hope of becoming more knowledgeable and better able to support the women I care for. It is very easy to see the programme purely as entertainment yet a lot can be learnt from it and it can also inspire us to research and promote change, so that we can continuously develop the profession and the care we provide.

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