Antoinette Maria's Reviews > Spiritual Midwifery

Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin
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's review
Jun 16, 2009

really liked it
Read in January, 2009

Loved the birth stories even though sometimes the hippie-ness of it is a little off putting. E.g., there are people who've had amazing natural childbirth experiences who don't need to live in the middle of nowhere, prefer the word contraction to rushes and would never use the word "psychedelic" to describe anything and I wish there were more of those so that women considering non-medicated birth could have that "Aah, she's just like me" moment of recognition. But overall the stories were inspiring. I also like the practicality of a lot of the advice. My biggest complaints are that:
The author herself seems to be very particular about what she wants from clients and seems to put a lot of the burden on the laboring woman to "be nice," and I don't believe that that's necessarily the energy that works for everyone
The Farm as the epitome of a great environment but the percentage of women who are actually going to birth there is negligible so why not talk a little more about some other great birthing environments or ways to make a birthing environment great.
She makes a lot of pronouncements such as: We have a very low incidence of post partum depression here on the Farm. We've never circumcised a male baby on the Farm.

All in all, I liked it but would be very particular about to whom I recommended this book.
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message 1: by Amanda (new)

Amanda I like that you say, "seems to put a lot of the burden on the laboring woman to 'be nice,' and I don't believe that that's necessarily the energy that works for everyone". I have been wondering about that. I am 31 weeks pregnant with my first and I have been reading Ina May's "Guide to Childbirth" and have been debating picking up this book as well. Pre-pregnancy I was extremely athletic and did a lot of training and yoga - just because I find it empowering for me personally. Out of reference to personal character, I feel like my attitude towards training, or something like childbirth (I assume), is much more aggressive. I feel the need for... ?more involved? energy to do what I need to do. Even relaxing and being mellow - in those cases - I feel like needs a more intense energy... for me. So, I'm glad you said that because I have been wondering if the way I do things would be a conflict to giving birth. We will see.

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