Why British Chinese mothers won’t go out after giving birth

时间:2017-11-14 单词数:2640

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Postnatal confinement - where new mothers do not leave the house, have visitors or shower for a month after giving birth - is said to be widespread among the UK’s Chinese community. Experts warn that few in the medical profession know this occurs.


Being confined in your flat is important, says Ching Ching Turner, from her home in London that she has not left since giving birth 28 days earlier.

“产后坐月子十分重要,” Ching Ching Turner在伦敦的家中说,自从28天前她分娩后,她就没出过家门。

She speaks to the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme via video call, as visitors are not allowed.


Mrs Turner argues confinement is an important process as traditional belief is that the mother and baby’s immunity is very low.


She is of Chinese ethnicity, and says: "For us, if you don’t practise it you’re kind of disadvantaging yourself."


Confinement is common across Asia and in China there are special hospitals where mothers stay confined for a month, sometimes only seeing their babies once a day.


It is carried out because traditional Chinese medicine purports that women who have just given birth are more susceptible to cold air, and becoming ill as a result.


Mrs Turner, who believes she has "done confinement in a modern way" by still showering for example, says her wishes came as a surprise to her husband, who was born in the UK.


I don’t think he realised that [confinement] came with a whole set of rules, she says.


It was a bit difficult for him as he wanted to show off his baby.


But now we’ve nearly completed the month, he sees the benefits."