There’s a massive babywatch going on right now, as fans are waiting to see when Beyoncé and Jay-Z will welcome their (guaranteed to be adorable, perfect, and instantly beloved by millions) twin babies. Still, it wouldn’t be a celebrity birth if there weren’t any five-star accommodations to obsess over — and it wouldn’t be 2017 if the internet weren’t already judging a mom for her choices. So, while Bey is (hopefully) relaxing somewhere preparing for the physical and emotional labor she’s about to go through, some are already picking through her leaked plans with questions like, “Will they allow cameras in the room?” and “How much is her suite going to cost?” But the thing is, it doesn’t actually matter how much Beyoncé's private birthing suite might be. Like any other mom, she has the right to spend as much money as she chooses on her and her babies’ comfort and care. And honestly, who wouldn’t do the same for their child if they had the means?
Then again, the Carters are probably used to a certain level of crazy when it comes to people judging their birthing plans. Back in 2012 when daughter Blue Ivy was born, reports were that Jay-Z and Beyoncé secured a private delivery suite at Lenox Hill Hospital in Brooklyn.
TMZ reported that the suites cost around $700-$800 dollars a night (which is kind of a bargain, honestly); since the walls could be reconfigured, TMZ reported that Bey likely rented several suites for maximum comfort and the true cost would have been closer to $3,200 per night. At the time, the New York Times reported that hospital spokespeople would only confirm the existence of certain “reinstated executive suites,” but refused to confirm their exact cost. The major criticism was that the couple’s security detail kept other families from accessing their babies in the neonatal wing, an allegation that the hospital denied. Beyoncé's representative did not immediately respond to Romper's request for comment.
This time, the Carters will likely give birth in Los Angeles, according to In Touch Weekly. But their plans are already generating a bit of controversy. And while cost details have not been made public, a source at Cedars-Sinai Hospital told In Touch Weekly earlier this month that the couple has made some unusual (read: expensive) requests.
They scheduled the C-section and prepared an A and a B team as decoys to confuse photographers and fans, and everyone signed confidentiality agreements. Jay and Beyoncé have also been arguing with the hospital about the use of security cameras. Jay doesn’t want cameras in the room, hallways or elevators, which is an impossible request.
Now, I’m a Beyoncé fan. But, more importantly in this context, I’m also a woman who has given birth. And I can say from experience that as I started preparing for the delivery of my daughter last year, there were two major factors that drove my decisionmaking: my baby's health and my own peace of mind. Those factors, coupled with the real-world limits of my bank account and health coverage, meant that I made decisions like choosing a midwife for my prenatal care, finding a breastfeeding-friendly hospital, and paying for a doula to support us through labor and afterwards.
It was that last choice that drew the most controversy. Despite ample evidence that doula support lowers the risk of cesarean birth, some people in my life painted my choice as a frivolous and excessive expense. What I said then is probably what Bey would say to all the critics now: “My coins. My body. My decision.”
The point is, Beyoncé has earned every bit of her fortune and has the right to spend it on making the birth of her twins as comfortable an experience as she can. It really doesn’t matter whether the rest of us think it’s excessive. The term is itself relative; what might be excessive concerns about security (or even unflattering photos) for regular people takes on a whole different meaning to an international celebrity. When I gave birth, I could waddle the halls of my local hospital in all my postpartum glory without fear of being recognized by fans, pawed by crazies, or photographed by the media. Bey’s worries are no less valid than any other mom’s; they’re just not the worries of every other new mom.
So, how much her birthing suite — or her list of demands — is going to cost really doesn't matter. Most of us are never going to have the issues that come with Bey's level of fame. And given how crazy fans can be, it would be far more strange for her not to throw money and privilege at this particular problem.
In other words: live your life, Bey.