Birth Stories: Mystery, Power, and Creation

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Jane Dwinell has written an important book using real-life scenarios to illustrate her unique philosophy of childbirth, one that can only inspire women to take greater control over how and where they give birth. From her vantage point as a birth attendant, Dwinell recounts the moving birth experiences of twenty different women. Thus the reader learns that there are no right or wrong ways to give birth. In fact, the author shows how satisfying it can be for women to exercise their own strength, power and choice in the birth process instead of yielding to unnecessary technological and medical interventions. Birth, she says, is a process of wellness, not illness. Hence, most women don't need medication to help them deal with normal birth pains if they have the proper empowering support during labor. When women give birth in a comfortable setting of their choice, the medical wrongs against them, committed in hospitals in the name of safety and technology, are prevented. In the face of opposition from an entrenched segment of the medical establishment, Dwinell dares the view that hospital care should not be routine but should be given only with good reason and the women's permission. For pregnant women and their partners, Birth Stories makes a convincing argument that under normal circumstances wach women's intuitive knowledge and individual resources can help her to labor and deliver successfully in her own way. Nurses, midwives, doctors, and birth educators will find it useful to realize that there are many ways to give birth ...that it is important for the family to be together and make their own choices ...and that pregnant women can have safe births without excessive medical intervention. This book can also serve as a guide for professionals who want to develop this type of birthing model within their own institution.