Welcome to Birth Philosophy!
Birth is an important and defining life experience. And yet, unfortunately, after many years of counseling and working with women during pregnancy and in the postpartum period, I saw far too many women struggle to come to terms with birth experiences that they were unhappy with. Despite the vast amount of quality information and resources available on healthy pregnancy and childbirth, many women do not begin the process of learning much about how to navigate this time period in their lives until after they discover they are pregnant. And, more often than not, 9 months is not nearly long enough for a pregnant mother to formulate a clear and confident philosophy of birth to base her decisions on.
Many women solidify their own personal birth philosophy after having one or more births that were not so great. Through trial and error, they finally take control, start to trust their instincts and gain confidence in their natural abilities. But wouldn’t it be better if they were in control from the start?
A mother that directs her own birth experience by taking an educated and active role in decision making is much more likely to be satisfied how things unfold: even if things do not go as she had planned. It is never too late to read, learn about and develop a personally tailored approach that supports the unique vision a woman may have for her birth. Buy why wait?
Once she has peed on the stick and seen a positive result, the clock is ticking and the pressure is on. It is hard to be objective when the situation is so personal. So even though most childbirth education is aimed toward families actively planning or already expecting, I started asking myself why these topics couldn’t be discussed much earlier. And I couldn’t come up with a good reason. I noticed that most of the young, non-pregnant people I talked to about my work as a breastfeeding counselor and childbirth educator were quite interested in birth related issues and very open to concepts and ideas that they may not have previously been aware of. And, since being pregnant was not personal to them, they felt free to explore, question and consider all types of options without being self conscious, defensive or pressured to make a ‘right’ decision.
So that is how Birth Philosophy was ‘born’. I felt that young women (and men) would respond positively and take advantage of the opportunity if they had a place to go where they could ‘study’ and discuss all of the great books, resources, blog postings, articles and research BEFORE they were anywhere close to planning a pregnancy. They didn’t need to be pregnant, they just needed an invitation. (And a bit of reassurance that even though society might send the message that they don’t really have permission to go there, they do!)
So, if you are a young person interested in birth from a medical, political, societal or historical perspective~this is the place for you. Your voice is important! Or, if you are already a parent or a birth professional, and you agree that mentoring and reaching out to a younger and wider audience is a key to improving outcomes here in the US and beyond, then welcome aboard and I look forward to having you as part of the Birth Philosophy community and network.
So, without further ado, let’s get started….
Thanks for visiting and spread the word: Birth: It’s not just for pregnant people anymore!