I had my son by C-section — he was breach, and too large to be turned around by manual version or to try and birth him vaginally. I know and have heard of many, many women whose lives were saved by having access to safe C-sections. That said, I definitely fall in the camp of “C-sections should be avoided if not medically necessary.” As you state, it’s a major abdominal surgery. Not that vaginal childbirth doesn’t carry its own risks, but C-sections are *surgery.* Every surgery carries very significant risks, including death. And the severe recovery situation — of not being able to do *anything* for yourself for several days — makes dealing with a newborn much more difficult.
I’m all in favor of women doing what they want with their bodies. But I want them to make informed choices. Electing to undergo major abdominal surgery is electing to take some pretty serious risks.