As someone who decided to give birth at home, I'm used to a variety of reactions to my decision (though the most common one is some degree of total surprise). I don't blame them; the overwhelming majority of moms birth in hospitals, and most folks’ exposure to birth comes through TV and movies, with home births only happening in period films where somebody dies. Not exactly a setup for widespread understanding. Fortunately, I have very supportive friends. The empowering things my non-mom friends said about my home birth more than made up for some of the other comments I heard from time to time.
Plenty of friends’ — moms and non-moms alike — first reaction when I allude to my birth story is “Wow! How badass!” I find that flattering, but I want to be totally clear: every birth is badass. Every birth is tough, and every birth takes guts (literally and figuratively). I chose to give birth at home with midwives primarily because it seemed a lot simpler and less scary than my alternatives, so I in no way think I am more badass than any other mom because of how I birthed, or the fact that I am a biological mom at all.
Ultimately, I was secure in my decision and excited about birthing at home with my husband and midwives I trusted. But it's still nice to hear affirming comments from people in your life whose opinions you respect. Comments and questions like the following were really empowering, and it's nice to promote more of the things we want to hear more of, right?