Birth images are constantly getting reported and their creators banned. I am sick and tired of having to fight for birth to be seen as the incredibly life altering and wondrous life event that it is. Yes, for me, excessively graphic birth images are better presented through other platforms rather than social media however, I do believe that tasteful, powerful birth imagery should be allowed on public platforms such as Facebook.
Birth images are life affirming. They are uplifting of women and mothers, uplifting of families. They show the true magnificence of the start of life. The beginnings from which every single one of us has come. They capture the beauty, the power, the challenge, the joy, the relief, the pure love, the connection and sacredness of transitioning, on many different levels. The leaving behind of one life and starting a new, the bringing forth of new life. Yes, they sometimes contain nudity but this nudity is necessary in the inherent journey of birth. The more we are exposed to birth, the normality and ordinary becomes the extra-ordinary and overshadows it all. We deserve the opportunity to marvel at how powerfully and wonderfully women are made to bring new life into the world. It allows us the opportunity to be empowered by the birth experiences of others so that we too can make informed decisions. It gives girls and young women the opportunity to get a small glimpse into the potential of childbearing future. Birth imagery holds so much power, the power to change current practice, change current social stigma as well as the way that the generations to come revere birth.
So, on this International Womens Day, I thought it appropriate to catch Facebook out on their discriminatory ways. My image of our baby emerging from my body taken by my husband has been banned for breaking Facebooks nudity and pornography community standard. I was banned for 7 days even though this image shows no nudity and is in no way pornographic.
I follow the National Portrait gallery Facebook page and a few days ago when this image came up on my newsfeed my initial reaction was one of shock that this image is allowed on Facebook. I have nothing against the image nor the National Portrait Gallery but seeing it had me wondering. So, I clicked on the ‘report image’ button to see what Facebook would have to say. Even the blatant nudity could not persuade Facebook that this image broke their own nudity community standard. (Image shared below with both the artist and galleries blessing).
So, Facebook. On this International Women’s Day, will you please start allowing birth images on social media for those of us whom wish to post and see them?