Yesterday I re-read Presenting Unexpected Outcomes. This was required reading for my childbirth educator certification program (ALACE) and is about talking about loss, complications, grief, etc. during your childbirth classes. I decided to read it again because I'm planning two news series of childbirth classes this winter and I wanted to decide which material to include. I have mixed feelings about it--as the book itself says, people deserve to be prepared for the possibility of unexpected outcomes and 90% of women express some feeling of loss after birth of one thing or another. On the other hand, I feel like we live in such a culture of "birth fright," that it is unnecessary to add to it. Part of the whole purpose of my classes is to promote trust in birth and confidence that women can DO it. Dosn't then having a whole class specifically devoted to the "unexpected" and statistically small negative outcomes negate what I claim is my purpose? Will I be empowering them with knowledge and coping skills and do I have an ethical responsibility to present the information? (as the book says) Or, will I be contributing to the cultural view of birth as flawed and dangerous and women and babies are in need of rescuing from it?
I also read A Difficult Decision. This book is about abortion (the subtitle is "a compassionate book about abortion") and was on my "to-sell" bookshelf. I hadn't really planned to read it, but I got an email from Citizens for Midwifery about a summit by National Advocates for Pregnant Women and in that email it referenced the devisiveness of the abortion issue and their rationale for including abortion dicussion during their upcoming summit. I had the book on the shelf and decided to read it. It was short and informative.
I read two issues of Missouri Conservationist as well. I am several issues behind. There was an interesting article about glade restoration and also one about various constrictor snakes in Missouri.
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