Just so you know: I share links to my own work, in the hope you love it and share it...because I hope my book will be a best seller.
The sales of the book keep my content free to read and free of annoying adverts.
Any other links I share are to alert you to things I find awesome, interesting or worthy of attention: I get no kick-backs or payments or advantage.
I am very particular about what I share, and your feedback is always welcome.
New Blog Post
Why can't we just be 'brutally honest'?
This post addresses a question many of us think, but know we can't voice without being offensive. But the answer to why we can't be brutally honest it is not that it is offensive. How can we just stand by when we feel a friend is making a 'bad' decision?
This is a question of support versus validation. The desire comes from the heart...but is it actually True, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary or Kind?
Feminism - Language
One of my favourite blogs is 'Language: A Feminist Guide'. A post on the blog I found particularly interesting is titled:
Part history lesson, part biography, this post explores 'linguistic sexism'.
The words we use matter, how we construct our sentences matter. (revisit the language of birth plans). In pregnancy and birth, women are often infantilised, much as is described in the Radical Notions. We are culturally conditioning to assume the role of 'good patient', and the idea that a 'good mother' ignores her own needs and is irrelevant as an individual (revisit 'fit your own mask first'). A 'good mother' is almost robotic in her efforts to put the needs of all above her own, including the needs of the hospital to manage the ward.
Gender-neutral language in maternity settings...is it possible?
This post explores the importance of the word
and asks if changing the language is possible, or even necessary.
This article, prompted by a 'mum shaming' incident online,
asks the question:
So just how long 'should'
you breastfeed for?
This is a question that is addressed in The Book and in this bellablog guest post, so it caught my eye and was (surprisingly) positive. It also highlighted the very important point that Doctors have:
"personal perception which is just as liable to be biased as somebody else's"
(Dr John Irvine, speaking on his own perceptions)
This post about 'chestfeeding' from July last year, crossed my path again. I commented on the article back in July, and want to share it again, as this is a very important element of The Birth Map. If you have not expressed your decisions (or your colostrum for that matter), who will be at the mercy of others. There are so many variables to think about, it can be overwhelming and easier to leave it to fate. The Birth Map evolved to fill this gap in maternity care, to ease the decision making process and ensure that mother-centred care continued before, during and after the birth. Too often the Mother becomes invisible and separate to the baby.
Feminism - Birth Choices
Breech birth: a lost 'art'?
“It is about a woman’s choice, isn’t it really?”
[Dr Saul Cohen] said.
“Women are being denied choice.”
This recent news article about the rise of freebirthing highlights the lack of support and options for women, particularly in rural and isolated communities. As many readers know, I have had two 'freebirths', or unassisted births. Both these births had continuity of midwifery care during the pregnancy. I live over 1 1/2 hrs from the birth centre. The nearest maternity facility is 1 hour away: but I was excluded as my BMI was 'borderline' (despite my first two uncomplicated, rather short labours being there). One of the Pathways for Birth Mapping is The Fast Birth Pathway. This is the unassisted birth, the 'birth before arrival', which is particularly important for those who don't live next door to a maternity hospital. The reasons for choosing freebirth vary. Many of those who call it 'madness' will also use the scare tactic of 'birth is unpredictable'.
Unpredictable does not mean 'unpreparable'.
The birth map prepares you for various possibilities. Understanding replaces fear, rather than handing over your power to an unknown entity, you take responsibility. You get to know the landscape. You know the detours. You recognise the hazards. You take steps to prepare for them.
Climbing Mt Everest is 'unpredictable'. But that doesn't stop people from doing it. They arrange a support team (including a sherpa: read The Doula and The Sherpa)
The decision to freebirth is yours - but if it is fear based and has no preparations for contingencies, it is like venturing up the creek without a paddle. Just as it is entering the hospital system unprepared. All birth needs preparation. All women deserve the support they need. ALL OPTIONS ARE VALID.
Hannah Dahlen was recently in New Zealand for a Conference, and whilst there was interviewed. Read the interview here. It looks at the key points in recent history where the opportunity to support women's rights in birth was bypassed. When Hannah posted this to her twitter she had this to say:
"We have to get back to the days of chaining ourselves to parliament. It’s not working that we do it all nice and diplomatically"
The diplomatic options for those who want to
change Maternity Care
but are not sure where to start:
Nominations are now open
of The Year
(perhaps you can think of someone very awesome to nominate, who would use the opportunity to lobby, advocate and promote the rights for women to have the support needed to make informed decisions...
for example through a 'pregnancy package' which includes a voucher for an invaluable doula!)
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