What if you thought pregnancy was going to be easy, a breeze? You had even planned an overseas holiday – but then suddenly, pregnancy became frightening and stressful, needing admission to a mental health unit?
Natalie Kon-yu – a Naarm-based writer descended from Italian and Mauritian migrants – talks about the experiences of medical sexism, birth trauma and medical mismanagement detailed in her book The Cost of Labour. She also talks about the ways in which motherhood is simultaneously exalted and undervalued In contemporary colonial Australia – and how she’s looking to challenge those norms. [Content warning: This episode addresses mental health, suicidal ideation, medical trauma and negligence.]
Read Natalie's powerful essay in Overland: The most natural thing
Shelf Reflection: Natalie Kon-yu
5 Questions with Dr Natalie Kon-yu
The #PublishingPaidMe hashtag reveals how Writers of Colour are undervalued
Natalie Kon-yu is a feminist first
The cost of labour
Music in this episode includes ‘Salientia’ and ‘Tympanum’ by REW<< and ‘Dark Water’ by Nul Tiel Records, used under a Creative Commons license from Free Music Archive.
Birthing and Justice is written and produced by Dr Ruth De Souza on the traditional and unceded lands of the Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nations. Sound editing by Olivia Smith.