“Woman-centered childbirth recognizes the primary role of the mother, and allows labor to progress according to the mother’s natural rhythms.” —ALACE CBE training manual
Several years ago I wrote a popular and somewhat controversial post called What to Expect When You Go to the Hospital for a Natural Childbirth. The article took a look at what women can realistically expect from a “standard” hospital birth and included some thoughts on what they deserve, my conclusion being that what women can expect and what they deserve are often, sadly, very different things. The article was one of my widest-reaching pieces and it was republished on both the Unncesarean and on Navelgazing Midwife. I also converted it into an article that was published in Pathways magazine, laid out so beautifully and professionally I practically cried.
However, my idea for the post didn’t come from me alone, it was sparked by reading a similar list in the 1970’s book Woman-Centered Pregnancy and Birth, co-authored by Carol Downer. So, imagine my delight when I was contacted last month by her assistant, letting me know that they’d read and enjoyed my post and telling me this awesome news:
“We recently published the book in its entirety online at: www.womenshealthinwomenshands.org/BirthingOurBabies.html.“
That’s right, free online! Check it out!
For my conservative readers, do be aware that the book and website both come from a solidly feminist and pro-choice perspective!
“The whole point of woman-centered birth is the knowledge that a woman is the birth power source. She may need, and deserve, help, but in essence, she always had, currently has, and will have the power.” –Heather McCue
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