I hear this silly analogy ALL THE TIME! I can see where it comes from and yeah, if you haven't got much knowledge about birth, you'd probably find it quite accurate.
But it is also bloody scaremongering.
Although lighthearted, it could actually be quite harmful for your mindset and we know how important mindset is for birth.
Let me tell you why birth isn't like shitting a watermelon, or forcing one out of your nostril.
1. Your nostril does not stretch.
Your vagina is specifically designed for the process of childbirth. It is lined by cells known as rugae. Imagine a slinky. It is tightly pressed together when 'resting' but if you move it or push it down the stairs, it is going to open up. These rugae do exactly the same. They are folded tightly, but if required can open out to allow for stretching. This means your baby has enough room to get the hell out. This is why birth tends to happen pretty slowly first time round, because the rugae haven't stretched that much. And when you are finished? The rugae go back to their natural state.
2. Watermelons are hard as rocks.
Yes, your baby has bones! Especially their skulls. However, the bones are super soft before they are born, which means they are able to move. The parts which join the bones together, known as 'suture lines' and 'fontanelles' are also very soft and these mean that the bones can move over the top of one another. The reason baby's are commonly born with cone shape heads. This helps them to get through the pelvis and out of the vagina without causing any damage to their own skulls and (hopefully) minimal harm to you too.
3. A nostril and a watermelon are not in proportion.
The pelvis and the fetal skull are perfectly designed to work together during birth. How? Because the diameters of the pelvis and the diameters of the skull are perfectly aligned. The smallest diameter of the fetal skull is 9.5cm and the widest part of the pelvic outlet is 13cm. The baby does some brilliant rotations in order for the diameters to be perfectly aligned. Of course, on occasion, the baby will get itself in a pickle and present in a less than perfect position, but this is unusual. It is also VERY rare for there to be a proper issue with a pelvis being too small and a head being too big. You are designed to birth your baby. Your nostril was never built to push anything out of it.
4. You have hormones on your side.
There are a tonne of hormones that support you during birth. There are no hormones that help you get large objects out of your nostril. One of the most important hormones is relaxin. As you'd assume, it causes relaxation of ligaments. This means the ligaments of your pelvis can relax and release, making more room for your baby to pass through. Your nostril will always be the same size.
If these aren't good enough explanations for reframing your beliefs about how birth works, I don't know what is. The female body is quite honestly insane in it's abilities and stupid analogies, however lighthearted, need to be gone with. They are harmful and untrue.
If you still need support in Reframing Birth, please do contact me for my availability for hypnobirthing, pregnancy relaxation, positive caesarean workshops and breastfeeding support. I want you to feel incredible about birth!
Lots of love and good vibes,