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Birth Trauma Support

Fraser Valley, British Columbia & Beyond

Newborn Baby

Welcome to the Fraser Valley Birth Trauma Support Page.  This page was set up by a fellow birth trauma survivor after not finding any resources available in the community.  The latest estimates of birth trauma rates are now at 45% of all births every year.  While unexpected and traumatic events can occur during birth, most survivors say that the reason for their trauma has more to do with how they were treated rather than what actually happened to them.  This means that birth trauma is largely preventable.  Once the trauma has occurred, the people who were involved move on with their lives while we are left to pick up the pieces.  This page is full of resources to help you navigate your own healing journey.  You are not alone.

To start off, here are some common feelings you may have after your birth trauma:

-You may feel that your experience wasn't as bad as what other people have gone through, and question if what happened to you was "traumatic enough" to be considered birth trauma.
- You may have trouble bonding with your baby or question whether or not your baby is actually yours.
- You may feel triggered by any mention of birth in any context.
- You may feel very angry or envious of other people's positive birth stories.
- You may feel very overprotective of your baby, more so than other parents seem to be.
- You may have many questions, memories that are out of order or have a lot of confusion surrounding what actually happened to you.

These are all examples of trauma responses.  Remember, that if it felt traumatic to you then it was trauma, regardless of the specifics of what happened.  Trauma occurs when there is an event that is sudden, unexpected and overwhelming, during which you feel out of control and have no voice.  Your feelings are valid no matter what they are, even if they contradict each other.

See below for some of the resources available to you.  Click here if you want to know more about me.  Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or join our facebook support group.


Urgent Coping Techniques

Urgent Coping Techniques

Start A Journal
Write your thoughts down in a notebook, this way they are on a page and not replaying in your brain.
Breathing Tool
A visual aid to help with regulating your breathing. Slow breathing helps to "trick" your brain out of panic mode.
Say Out Loud How You Want To Feel
Example: "I am awesome! I am a great at this!" Say things that make you feel good and strong afterwards.,of%20their%20emotions%20and%20experiences.
Put Something Happy In Your Ears
Happy music is a great distraction when your mind is stuck in a loop, replaying your traumatic experience.
Anxiety Tools
A how to guide for managing anxiety and trauma.
Grounding Techniques
A great resource full of other "grounding techniques" you can try when you are feeling triggered.
Bilateral Tapping
Bilateral tapping helps your brain reprocess the traumatic memories that have been improperly stored.
How To Request Your Hospital Records
Where To File Your Complaint

Where To File Your Complaint

BC Ombudsperson
When You Have Exhausted All Options
BCCNM Hearing Process
Further Your Unresolved Complaint About a Nurse or Midwife
Health Professions Review Board
Further Your Unresolved Complaint About a Doctor
Patient Care Quality Review Board
Further Your Unresolved Complaint About a Hospital
Vancouver Coastal Health
Patient Care Quality Office
Providence Health
Patient Care Quality Office
Northern Health
Patient Care Quality Office
Island Health
Patient Care Quality Office
Interior Health
Patient Care Quality Office
Fraser Health
Patient Care Quality Office
About A Nurse Or Midwife
British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives
About A Doctor
College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia

Statistics And Public Information

Nurse Professional Standards
The Standards of Practice that Nurses are Required to Follow
Midwives Standards and Guidelines
The Standards and Guidelines that Midwives are Required to Follow
Canadian Medical Association Code of Ethics
The Code of Ethics that Canadian Doctors are Required to Follow
Canadian Medical Protective Association Guide To Consent
The Consent Guide for Canadian Physicians
MSC Financial Statement (Blue Book)
Check here to see how much your doctor bills to MSP every year
BC Perinatal Services
We are fortunate that birth statistics in British Columbia are followed closely and are publicly available
Statistics And Public Informatin

Complaint Letter Writing

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Learn from my own letter writing experience and complaint process.
I spent 5 months crafting a 15 page complaint letter and received my desired outcomes.  My case manager at the BCCNM said that, based on my letter, I was qualified to sit on the review board because I essentially went through the same process they would be going through.  The Head of Obstetrics at the hospital where I filed my complaint said that my letter showed a lot of insight and there was no lack of confidence in what I was saying.  You can learn from my process and write your own letter that will be taken seriously.

A Step By Step Guide To:

  • Determine where to submit your letter

  • Request and interpret your hospital records

  • How to research local standards and guidelines

  • Address your audience

  • Write a compelling letter

  • Prepare for the outcome

Free Bonus:

  • Medical Records Reference Sheet

  • Complaint Submission Reference Sheet

Complaint Letter Writing

Other Complaint Letter Writing Resources

Patient Pathways
A Patient Advocate in BC and a great source of resources
Improving Birth
Safer Birth For All
Birth Monopoly
Know Your Rights

Local Therapy Resources

Pacific Postpartum Support Society
BC - Postpartum Depression and Postpartum Anxiety Support
Nicole Chambers Counselling
Maple Ridge, BC - Perinatal Mental Health and Birth Trauma Counselling
New Tides
Vancouver, BC - EMDR Therapy
Cedar Sisters Doula
Surrey, BC - Reiki for Trauma Healing
Beth Scholes Counselling
Chilliwack, BC - Postpartum Counselling
Well Within Counselling
Abbotsford, BC - EMDR therapy with Dr. Paula Jacobs
Local Therapy Resources

Trauma Informed Yoga

Centerpoint Yoga
White Rock, BC
Yoga Therapy International
Vancouver, BC
Turn The Tide Yoga & Wellness
Vancouver, BC
New Tides
Vancouver, BC
Avant Counselling
Surrey, BC
In Balance Health
Maple Ridge, BC
Vidya Therapeutic Yoga
Chilliwack, BC
Re.Pose Therapy
Abbotsford, BC
Trauma Informed Yoga

Perinatal Loss

Pregnancy After Loss
Support organization
Seeking Ceremony
Using ceremonies for healing
Empty Cradle
This is a support group that meets in a church and may have religious affiliations
Butterfly Run
Vancouver, BC
Pregnancy Loss Info
Answers to common questions
BC Womens Hospital
Local Resource Page
In Our Hearts
FaceBook Page
Michelle Tyliakos
Resource Page
Perinatal Loss
Other Helpful Links

Other Helpful Links

Evidence Based Birth
The best place to get trustworthy, evidence based, peer reviewed and up to date information about care.
Birth Monopoly
Know your rights
Improving Birth
An organization for spreading awareness
Collecting people's traumatic birth stories
Vancouver Birth Trauma
A website hosted by a fellow birth trauma survivor
Birth Place Lab
Information about mistreatment in maternity units
Please consider filling out this survey about maternity patient experiences, being researched by UBC
Empowering Moms
The right support and education to have empowered future experiences
Local News Stories

Local News Stories (Content May Be Triggering)

11 assault charges laid against fake nurse who worked at Vancouver hospital for a year
CBC News - Sep 9, 2022
Delays that led to Abbotsford hospital baby death draw apologies, criticism, changes and review
Vancouver Sun - Aug 28, 2017
More new moms speak out about traumatic labour, delivery in Fraser Health
CityNews - Jan 13, 2022
Surrey woman gives birth in hospital lobby after she says staff turned her away
CityNews - Jan 12, 2022
'A scene from a horror movie': 9 mothers speak out about alleged mistreatment during childbirth
CBC News - Nov 7, 2016
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