Ina May's Guide to Childbirth Epub Ï Ina May's

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth This is an essential read if you're pregnant and filled not just with fetus but with a fundamental doubt as I was that you're physically or mentally capable of pushing it out at the end If you're skeptical that you're going to be able to move a small person from one of your internal organs to the world via your vaginal opening Ina May will clear all that up for you The birth stories in this book and Gaskin's explanations of the process gave me a total confidence in my ability to do this crazy sounding thing By the time I was done I no longer saw childbirth as a terrifying and improbable medical event akin to removing a highly delicate ship from a design flawed bottle; instead I was convinced that childbirth is an awesome natural process something I was built to do and totally capable of accomplishingHuge caveat though this book removed my fear of childbirth but gave me a new and overwhelming terror of hospitals I found this to be true of most natural childbirth books with some exceptions including my favorite Birthing from Within the confidence they gave me in my body's ability to give birth came at the cost of a raging fear of hospitals and non natural childbirth Ina May made me terrified of mainstream medicine's approach to birth and the book got hard to read at a certain point because I was like Yeah sure this birth would be wonderful if I were doing it on Ina May's hippie commune but since I'm doing it in a shitty Miami hospital those doctors are going to cut me up into pieces and mess up my baby with all kinds of unnecessary and frightening interventions Eek I wound up spending a lot of my pregnancy terrified of what would happen to me at the hospital and convinced that medical professionals would make traumatic what would otherwise be an awesome and beautiful experienceIn the end I had my baby two days ago I think this hysteria about hospitals did ultimately help me My fear of hospital delivery wound up being productive and I was extremely lucky to have exactly the birth experience I wanted because I stayed home until the last possible minute and literally arrived at the hospital at the moment that I had to push If the natural childbirth books hadn't made me so insanely fearful of what labor in the hospital would be like I would've gone in earlier and probably wound up taking drugs which I really didn't want to do That said though there are perfectly valid reasons why some of us do give birth in hospitals and not all hospital births are the nightmare that natural childbirth books make them out to be I do definitely recommend this one but I also recommend reading other books to fill out a balanced view unless you are definitely giving birth under the stars on a hippie commune and your chances of winding up in a hospital are extremely low My daughter's birth was amazing Labor was not painful it was too big for that More like getting hit by a tsunami over and over The whole intense experience was deeply invigorating and actually GAVE me the energy I needed to cope with the first couple of difficult weeks with a new babyWhen I've confessed to other moms that birth was SPECTACULAR they're incredulous How can something so painful so medical so dangerous be anything somebody could enjoy especially without any drugs Ina May Gaskin explains birth is normal My challenging but beautiful birth experience has apparently become an exception in this country but it doesn't have to be With an understanding of what our bodies can and are made to do birth can not only be safe but beautifulI would recommend no REUIRE this book for anybody who wants to have kids or who has had kids or shoot anybody with reproductive parts Wanna know what they can do given the chance Here ya go The collection of honest birth stories and the detailed information about the processes of birth soothe any fears future parents might have Don't be scared away by the hippy dippiness of this book I'm glad I wasn't I read this book with a caveat read the second section first then the first section It made so much sense I'm not sure why the book wasn't organized that way in the first placeIna May's Guide to Childbirth is skewed toward natural childbirth and can get a little culty especially all the stories about The Farm but I found the information in the second part of the book really helpful even when planning for a hospital birth The historical and worldwide accounts of birth Gaskin provides is comforting to read about as well as the explanation of the processThe first part consists of a collection of birth stories from women on The Farm and women who interacted with midwives from The Farm The second part is informational and describes the biological process It may not be for the sueamish but if you're going to be popping a baby out of your body one day it may help to not be too sueamish about these thingsThe best thing about this book is that it describes birth as a completely natural thing for a woman's body to do and that it's not at all scary which is a relief after our culture's fear mongering around birth I just had my monthly midwife appointment and she lent me this awesome book It's got everything including a section on orgasmic birth I find it refreshing to read something so real that attempts to turn our stereotypical hospital birth routine upside downThe book is divided into two parts The first part is a compilation of birth stories from lots and lots of women; many will make you cry with joy The second part reflects how Ina May's Farm community achieves such low caesarean intervention rates with common sense love and support for the laboring woman It also describes the dangers of artifically induced labors and the scary new practices regarding caesarean births resulting in uterine ruptures and hemorrhaging for subseuent pregnancies There is way to the pain meds than the general public knowsIna May's birthing experiences are invaluable Her writing style is down to earth humorous and accessable I urge everyone to look into this book I've laughed so hard sharing stories with my husband I almost wet myselfI have had a homebirth as well as a nurse midwife assisted hospital birth Both were completely natural and very positive experiences As I am pregnant with my third child I am planning another homebirthThere are way too many women who will unuestioningly let doctors have authority over their bodies without doing the necessary research to make informed decisions regarding one of the most important things in their liveschildbirthEven if this book is pro midwife or anti hospital how many hundreds of books are out there that completely ignore the points that Ina May raises in this book It is definitely worth looking into regardless of your childbirth choices What you need to know to have the best birth experience for youDrawing upon her thirty plus years of experience Ina May Gaskin the nation’s leading midwife shares the benefits and joys of natural childbirth by showing women how to trust in the ancient wisdom of their bodies for a healthy and fulfilling birthing experience Based on the female centered Midwifery Model of Care Ina May’s Guide to Natural Childbirth gives expectant mothers comprehensive information on everything from the all important mind body connection to how to give birth without technological intervention Filled with inspiring birth stories and practical advice this invaluable resource includes• Reducing the pain of labor without drugs and the miraculous roles touch and massage play• What really happens during labor• Orgasmic birth making birth pleasurable • Episiotomy is it really necessary • Common methods of inducing labor and which to avoid at all costs• Tips for maximizing your chances of an unmedicated labor and birth• How to avoid postpartum bleeding and depression • The risks of anesthesia and cesareans what your doctor doesn’t necessarily tell you• The best ways to work with doctors andor birth care providers• How to create a safe comfortable environment for birth in any setting including a hospital• And much Ina May’s Guide to Natural Childbirth takes the fear out of childbirth by restoring women’s faith in their own natural power to give birth with ease less pain and less medical intervention So as far as useful information goes this book pretty much said the same thing as The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth except without the same amount of research backing it up Still helpful but not especially new Plus she used the terms Much likely or much less likely a lot instead of giving the actual statistics as Goer's book didAnother downside of this book was that it was a little too Rah rah rah women's bodies can do anything for my taste I guess that's not a really bad thing because it did pump me up for childbirth but as Gaskin constantly refers to her experience birthing women on The Farm I can't help but think of it in semi sarcastic uotation marks I kept thinking how her sample is made up of very naturalistic in touch women read hippies and a woman like myself is likely to have a different experience in childbirth even given the fact that my body really knows what to do My last gripe is that SOME of the things she suggested were a little out there for me She shuns prudishness in our culture and encourages women to make birth or rather allow birth to be a sexual experience yet totally respects the fact that most women are too prudish to have a stranger especially a man in the birthing room with them without adverse effects to the progress of labor So a little bit of a double standard there I'm personally on the side of prudishness in all its formsAll right those griefs being aired I actually did like this book and I'm glad I read it First of all the birth experiences at the beginning while somewhat nauseating were also very encouraging They were all so different from the birth stories you normally hear and it made me happy to know that natural childbirth really can be an extremely positive experience Giving birth is not something women need to be saved from by medical interventionThere was also a lot of practical midwifery information that I'm glad I read before making my second attempt at a natural childbirth Things about various laboring positions tricks to help labor progress etc were both interesting and potentially usefulI was also impressed by the clarity of the writing Even though Gaskin is clearly on one side of the childbirth debate she didn't come off sounding like a crazy I was able to respect her even when in a few cases I didn't agree with her In general I think this is a helpful book for all women to read before giving birth Our culture really does make a medicalized birth seem normal when in reality the opposite is true Still I would recommend reading Henci Goer's book in conjunction with this for a slightly even handed useful approach to the topic Invaluable education and resource for the childbirthing experience A must read Motherhood is Not a Competition Why Pressure Moms to Strive for the Perfect Natural Childbirth and make them feel guilty if that isn't in the cards Now that my youngest and probably last alas son is a year old I feel like I have enough distance to be able to write this review My wife and I have two boys she carried and birthed the oldest; I carried and birthed the youngest My wife went first for several reasons not least of which was that I had have a real and irrational fear of childbirth The hope was that Pelly's birth experience would be smooth and having observed it I'd feel better when my turn came around Knowledge is power right Well it didn't work out that way Due to complications Pelly delivered our older son by emergency c section four weeks early without experiencing a single contraction When my turn came around I still felt woefully unprepared and not a little bit terrified of childbirth We took the classes I talked to other moms I read everything I could get my hands on including this book I read a billion birth stories on birthwithoutfear but in this case Knowledge was NOT Power So much of what I read just made me scared even though I tried to avoid the triggering stuff the loss stories the bad outcomes Eventually my wife and my doctor staged an intervention They told me to throw out my birth plan and put away the books and websites and just let it go You want a birth plan Here's the birth plan We go to the hospital and we come out with a healthy baby and two healthy moms That's the goal That's all that matters But that's crazy It's too simple My brain doesn't work that way What about all the what ifs and contingencies I'm a girl who likes to be prepared for any eventuality You can't my doctor said bluntly You can be prepared but you can't be in charge Long story short seriously I just wrote my whole birth saga in 10 long paragraphs and deleted them because this is a BOOK REVIEW my birth did not go according to plan either I was put on bed rest at 33 weeks and then delivered by emergency caesarian at 38 weeks It was not what I wanted I felt like my body had betrayed me by failing at this most basic task of womanhood which my female relatives have done countless times without issue Maybe I was too old Maybe I'm just a wimp when it comes to pain Maybe I should have resisted medical interventions for longer Maybe I should've hired a doula But when I tried to tell my wife all this she shook her head You followed the birth plan Healthy baby; two healthy mamas You're a rock star It took me a long time to come around to my wife's way of thinking and to be honest I have moments when I'm not totally there yet Here's the thing and I'm finally getting to the book review part of this review I promise Motherhood has become a competitive sport in our culture We are under enormous pressure to be the Right kind of parents get our kids into the Right schools and the Right activities use the Right methods of feeding weaning sleep training discipline et cetera The media and social pressure often make it seem like the fate of the world or at least the future well being and societal value of our kids rests on basic parenting decisions like whether or not to use cloth diapers or BPA free sippy cups And this insane social pressure on moms begins even before kids are born in the Natural Childbirth movement that this book represents Let me be clear I have nothing against natural childbirth If it had worked for me it would have been ideal I think this book really does aim to give women information and strategies for a positive natural childbirth experience and it is an unintended conseuence perhaps not even stemming from the book itself but from other media sources and the natural childbirth movement at large that women like me end up feeling like our non natural birth experiences are tainted or less than or that we have failed as women and mothers because we needed a little extra help The days and weeks following my son's birth should have been the happiest of my life well barring the hormones rocking my boat of course but instead I had to spend the first year of my baby's life wrestling with guilt and shame and a sense of inadeuacy and that's just stupid Healthy Babies Healthy Mamas That's the bottom line As long as readers don't lose sight of that and start viewing doctors as the enemy and medical intervention as failures this book contains a lot of useful information   If you really really really want a natural childbirth in a birthing center or at home this is a good book for you Personally I will be giving birth in a hospital This book uses scare tactics to decrease medical intervention While I agree that it is best to have an uncomplicated natural vaginal birth it doesn't always happen that way Going into it with that specific plan is great but I think women need to realize it doesn't always work out this way I plan to go without pain meds for as long as I can but if labor goes on too long or gets to be too much or if I have to be induced which is looking likely I am open to the meds Obviously all we all want is the best outcome for mom and baby I really liked The Best Birth better I felt it grooved w my philosophy This book does give some good information about helping labor progress and some of what she says makes sense to me I generally don't like anything that is too biased strongly in one direction or another though And when it comes to giving birth I don't know if you can know what to truly expect until you are in the situation I have so many conflicting thoughts about this book This is the fourth book that I've read about childbirth On the one hand I have found it to be the most helpful in preparing me for childbirth On the other hand there is an obvious bias While I agreed with much of what the author wrote there were several parts that really bugged meThe book starts off with a bunch of birth stories I was excited to read about birth in a positive light However there were several factors that made the stories less helpful Over half of the birth stories took place in the 1970's and 1980's So I personally felt some disconnect from reading about women who could be my mom And although I know that natural birth hasn't changed all that much since then I felt that the hospital parts of the various stories were grossly unfair although interesting It's safe to say that hospitals have come a long way since the 70's and 80's Stories from the modern day in various environments ie hospital birthing center home would have been much helpful to meAlso some of the women in the birth stories came off as very different I found the story about the woman stripping down and physically holding the woman who was in labor particularly odd Some of the wording in the birth stories threw me off There were a few mothers who would talk about their babies or body parts dancing Sometimes the stories seemed to get off topic They often focused on how wonderful the farm was versus how the women handled birth There was a story about abortion that while interesting really didn't go into very much detail about the birthDespite all of those flaws I did find some of the birth stories helpful I liked reading about what the women did to cope with painlessen the pain and the various ways they pushed out their babies I just wish that could have been a focus in all of the storiesI experienced some confusion about The Farm A better introduction that explained exactly what the farm was would have been helpful As it was it took a me a bit of reading to piece together exactly how the farm worked And I still imagine people living on buses or in tents like a couple of the stories mentioned Maybe that's really how The Farm functionsI found the beginning of the second section of the book by far the most helpful I was able to write down many techniues that I want to try in my next birth There was a of useful advice and if the whole book would have been like that it would have easily been a five star bookOnce the author started talking about medical testsprocedures she lost some of my attention She seemed excessively cautious about medical tests The benefits of medical tests were skimmed over while the possible harm of these tests was thoroughly covered I especially thought that the author was overly critical of the Rhogam shot I raised my eyebrows when she stated that routine Rhogam injections at 28 weeks was internationally controversial The international hospital that I will be giving birth at does routine Rhogam injections at 28 weeks In fact my foreign Dr who was not trained in America encourages it After having an antibody scare myself and following women who deal with anti D antibodies during pregnancy the few sentences she had on sensitization were not enough to fully understand the risky and potentially heartbreaking future pregnancies of those who are sensitizedI felt preached at for the last part of the book While a lot of her outrage seemed justified to me it wasn't very helpful in a book that was supposed to be a guide to childbirth Some of the topics she discussed could have been covered much succinctly And at times the author went too far in her criticisms I thought it was especially unfair to claim that Dr's are not critical thinkers or at least haven't been taught this vital skill in medical school and that they don't have time to read recent studies While this is certainly true of some Dr's it is surely not true of most Dr's I also would have been interested to learn what percentage of high risk pregnancies the hospitals havehad and if these were included in the statistics she used to compare to The Farm The author got somewhat political in her writing which made me slightly uncomfortable After she thoroughly detailed problems within the medical field she gave suggestions that included federal regulation and national healthcare I would have appreciated a broader selection of solutions The author described all that Dr's do to prevent lawsuits but failed to suggest malpractice reform in her list of solutionsWhich gets me to the last part that bothered me Doctors are blamed for almost everything The author mentioned the high rate of epidurals and the resulting interventions However she failed to note that part of the problem was the large number of women who demand epidurals There are many women who refuse to give birth without an epidural and therefore have no desire to have a midwife or intervention free birth I personally don't have anything against that But it would contribute to why so many American women use doctors's instead of midwives and why so many interventions happenThis very lengthy review might suggest that I didn't like this book or that I majorly disagreed with the author I didn't Again this is the most helpful of the four books I have read so far I learned a lot and would even recommend this book as long as it is not the only book a future mother readsThree Stars


About the Author: Ina May Gaskin

Ina May Gaskin MA CPM is founder and director of the Farm Midwifery Center located near Summertown Tennessee Founded in 1971 by 1996 the Farm Midwifery Center had handled than 2200 births with remarkably good outcomes Ms Gaskin herself has attended than 1200 births She is author of Spiritual Midwifery now in its fourth edition For twenty two years she published Birth Gazett


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