No hatting, chatting or patting

No hatting

This is not satire.

I have written before about the outrageous practice of hatting. I thought that homebirth midwives could not exceed that demonstration of idiocy, but I was wrong. Now there’s the picture above.

From the Facebook page of Ancient Art Midwifery Institute run by Carla Hartley of Trust Birth whose motto is:

There is one simple, yet profound, birthtruth: Birth is Safe; Interference is Risky!

How can something as simple as putting a hat on a baby precipitate a maternal hemorrhage or affect a baby’s health for the rest of his life? Let me save you the $40 and tell you. It can’t.

Thanks to Carla for demonstrating yet again that homebirth midwifery is a toxic mixture of  startling ignorance and unreflective defiance.

And now I have a question for homebirth advocates. Are you really so gullible that you would believe this nonsense? And if you recognize this for the nonsense it is, why would you believe anything that comes out of the mouths of these fools? Most important, why would you hire one of these clowns to attend your birth?

  • Azuran

    So, if putting on a hat is so devastating, shouldn’t putting a diaper also have extreme negative effect? I’m pretty sure the diaper covers more than the hat.
    Or is a baby’s head covered in some special baby bonding pheromone secreting head glands that are not found anywhere else on the body?
    Also, how long after birth is is safe to cover the baby’s head without killing it’s mother and destroying his life?

    • demodocus

      Judging by the number of middle-aged mothers of my acquaintance who really enjoyed sniffing my baby’s head, there might indeed be some extra-special pheromone. 😉

  • Aly

    Do I think hatting is necessary? Not at all. Do I think hatting ALWAYS has devastating effects? No. But the topic you bring up isn’t even the issue for me here. I agree that in your previous post (linked above) that defying obstetric practices simply because it’s obstetrics is not effective or benficial to women or babies… and sadly, I’m sure there are midwives out there who do it. But as far as I can tell from your aggressive language and general stereotyping of midwives in these two blogs, you strike me as the very kind of OB from which I would get as far away as possible because it’s obvious that instead of providing any evidence yourself (as you criticize the midwives for that you’ve posted about), you simply dog on what you don’t seem to understand or what wasn’t traditionally taught to you. Your attitude is disgusting and repulsive. The kind of arrogance you have displayed in these two posts is the very reason I believe maternity care is in the crisis that it’s in. You have a medical license. Congratulations. But a license really doesn’t mean much to me when the person who holds it seems to think it makes you and your knowledge supperior. Most people today, unfortnately, seem to think if you’re an MD that your say must be right, even if you can’t provide any evidence-based information… you went to med-school, so you must know best, right? People have forgotten to ask powerful questions, and have forgotten that OBs (and dentists, and massage therapists, etc) are HIRED help, and they are not obligated to take everything you say as 100% truth. Carla Hartley may or may not be right on everything she teaches, but she at least empowers and educates women to make their own choices instead of let them subject themselves to the god-complex that most OBs seem to have. You may or may not be right about a bunch of stuff too, but I can’t say I believe you empowered anyone in what you wrote; on the contrary, you could only devalue others of a different opinion by attacking their education and character. Am I anti-hospital birth? Absolutely not. But I do think the hospital policies and procedures in maternity care, and most OBs, have a lot of issues to work through to truly make the best of birth. To think that you have everything right in the hospitals is downright SCARY, and the attitude you’ve displayed here just furthers my distrust of the safety of the establishment of maternity care.

    • MLE

      Just to pick one point in your screed – how is it empowering to validate opinions that are wrong?

      • Yourenotanexpert

        Because people who knee-jerk think professionals who dare to have put in years of hard work and study into getting a degree, and then work for decades in a professional field gaining valuable experience are just flaunting their degree and rubbing it in everyone else’s face. But then have the audacity to call professionals “HIRED help”, as if they were paid servants.
        It is insecurity and special-snowflake mentality at its worst.

        • LibrarianSarah

          Unfortunately I’ve been seeing this “HIRED help” mentality more and more from my students lately. I think it is partially due to the rise of the “students as customers” philosophy in higher education. But I wonder if it also has something to do with their parents giving them the impression that paying for someone’s expertise is the same as paying for their servitude. Apparently, I am nothing but a maid/babysitter with a couple advanced degrees.

    • wookie130

      Are you really that offended that she finds the whole “hatting” thing stupid, as most people would, if they knew that this was even a thing in the first place?

      Stick around for a while, Aly. If you’re looking for anything evidence-based, you’ve most certainly come to the right place.

      Personally, I’ve never actually met an OB who had a real “god-complex”…but the more home birth deaths and birth accidents that occur at the hands of these charlatans posing as actual midwives (and there are more and more happening all of the time, due to the horrible barrage of misinformation and outright lies of the NCB crowd), I feel that a lot of women will come around to who is really providing care that is truly evidence-based.

      • wookie130

        Oh, I just saw how old Aly’s post was! Haha!

  • andrea

    If you’re breastfeeding and cradling your baby, providing skin to skin contact, your arm/nook of your elbow will be directly on baby’s head to help maintain a healthy body temperature for the baby. Hats come into the picture when moms aren’t, or can’t, make themselves available to their babies. Otherwise, there really is no need to for a hat. I’m not sure if it would be *harmful* but certainly most often unnecessary.

    • wookie130

      Are you really “not sure if it would be harmful” for a baby to wear a hat immediately after birth? Really??? Because if you’re being honest with yourself, I think you probably know the answer.

  • Manda280288

    women used to die during birth ALOT. Part of preparing for birth was to make your funeral shroud. Hospital and medical intervention has saved many women and babies from certain death. Bring on the interventions!! I had an emergency c-section with my daughter, she was posterior, facing downards and caught on my pelvis bone, she came out with a dent in her head and will be forever thankful for this procedure that saved us!!!

  • Jennifer2

    So, if birth is safe, and intervention is what is risky, then why in the world did anyone every start intervening in births in the first place? Like, is it just a solution in search of a problem? Where is this wonderful place in which women and newborns never die during childbirth because no one intervenes in the birth? Or is that the rub? Women and children DO die during birth, but in hindsight, you can always find some “intervention” that must have caused the death. Someone who was talking out of turn or who touched mom or baby incorrectly that caused the hemorrhage or prolapse or whatever.

  • Eskimo

    I thought about “hatting” today! It’s my sons birthday and every year I take out this beautiful little knit hat he wore at the hospital and we all coo over it.

    Oh, and it DID effect him! He is only 5 and HAS to wear a hat everyday!

  • WHAT??!!!!! Do these people know the risks of wearing tinfoil hats?

  • Charlotte

    I bet bragging about how no hat was allowed to touch the baby will soon be a common element in birth stories soon enough. It’s no longer enough to brag that you refused meds or breastfed within seconds of the baby being born.

  • Hmmm… But what if I made the hat out of a placenta?

    • God save the Whapio

      They are sort of a cute beret shape..

    • Sarah

      Thanks- just snorted my coffee out my nose reading that!

    • wookie130

      Oh, you are definitely on to something here! I wonder what the “benefits” to mom and baby will be?

  • S

    Surface area to volume ratio! Those poor cold babies. =(

  • Renee Martin

    I thought it was a joke.
    Now that I know its real, its no longer funny.

  • AmyM

    Totally OT update: My sister had her baby, everyone is safe and sound. They started the induction last night, and around late afternoon today, decided to go for C-section. Not clear if that was a request on her part, a failure to progress or the doctor deciding baby wouldn’t fit…he was 9lb 8oz, so kinda huge. 🙂 Anyway, that was the expected outcome (by a good number of people incl my sister) so I am sure she is totally ok with that.

    • That’s good to hear!

    • Victoria

      Congratulations Auntie, glad everyone is safe and sound.

    • Becky05

      Hey, that’s just a normal newborn weight.

      • AmyM

        Ha! but we’re all short and petite in my family…I suppose he gets his size from his father, but even he isn’t much over average…no GD, just big. Oh well, he is a very sweet looking baby!

    • Jessica

      So glad to hear she and baby had a good outcome!

    • Amazed

      Congratulations! I kind of gather why it would look troublesome, a small mother and a big baby. My mom happened to be the smallest lady in the L&D unit… and she got the biggest baby. And she went through the tunnel that some people see before dying… fortunately, they saved her. Your body can make a baby that’s too big, like, say, dad. I am happy your sister is fine and C-section was an option before something went south.

      Enjoy the newest addition to your family!

  • Neonpantsuit

    I just… Can’t even. What the hell ever happened to common sense? Critical thinking? How can people seriously BE this gullible?
    “If you put a hat on your baby, you won’t bond and you’ll BLEED TO DEATH.”
    Seems legit. X[

  • auntbea

    OT, though I got here by following links from this post: http://www.africanbirthcollective.org/html/InSenegal.html

  • Hatting – obviously this is a widespread problem that is responsible for the atrocities of modern society….mothers should never have their babies far enough away from their own bodies that things like hats are necessary to keep the child adequately warm.

    Has anyone looked into the hatting and autism link?

    (note, I’m being sarcastic)

  • Are you nuts

    By this logic, I guess I should shed my clothes and walk around clad in fig leaves a la Adam and Eve. Will let you guys know how it goes.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      Note that before the fall, there were no fig leaves even.

      I always thought it would be fun to write a movie about the Garden of Eden, and be true to the story (no fig leaves before the fall). If you were faithful to the story in Genesis, how supportive would the religious fundamentalists be? They were all accepting of the violence in The Passion of the Christ, but how would they deal with nudity?

      • Eddie

        You know how it goes, anything related with sex in movies, including nudity, is bad, but violence is A-OK. Especially when it happens first to the naked people.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          That is why I think it would be especially fun.

          I have even asked around, did Adam and Eve have sex before the fall? It’d be great to throw a sex scene in my faithful telling of Genesis, just to make the fundies’ heads explode.

          But I’d really like to hear the religious objections to naked Adam and Eve in a movie. If it is true to the story, then there cannot be shame before the fall, so any movie attempts to “hide” the nudity would compromise the legitimacy.

          I just need to write it.

          • auntbea

            Yes, but WE have fallen and are therefore ashamed of nakedness. Their discomfort, though not Adam and Eve’s, would be justifiable.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            But if I allow _our_ shame to influence my direction as a filmmaker, then I am not really making a film about them and the Bible, but about our insecurities. I don’t want that. I want an honest movie about the Bible story.

          • auntbea

            Right. But that doesn’t mean people who aren’t Adam and Eve would be wrong for being against it.

          • Eddie

            However, they *would* be wrong for saying “these people you are depicting before the fall should be clothed.”

          • auntbea

            Well, yeah, sure.

          • Dr Kitty

            It might depend on who you got to play Adam and Eve how worked up the fundies got.

            A gamine young actress as Eve and a non threateningly emo type as Adam, with very little sexual chemistry (Kstew and Rpatz come to mind) and complaints would be minimal.

            However, if played by a couple with a more….let’s go with “robust” sexuality, I foresee problems.

            Or just put it on cable.
            Californication and Game of Thrones seem to be trying have a competition to see how much unnecessary nudity you can cram into each episode, so it would fit right in.

  • Elle

    Amazing how such an innocuous decision can have such tragic results. It’s like the butterfly effect! Or should we now call it the babyhat effect?

  • Captain Obvious

    Is this a Woody Allen play or like The Book of Mormon, a Broadway Musical by Matt Stone and Trey Parker the Creators of South Park? Then a comical satire may be worth 40 bucks. But no, just some nonsensical charlatan.

  • moto_librarian

    I had an online argument with a NCBer a few weeks ago about pph. I stated that I would have died had I given birth at home due to a pph caused by a cervical laceration. Having looked over my medical records with my CNM, I stand by that assertion. Cytotec, pit, manual extraction of clots, and vigorous fundal massage were not enough to stop it – having the laceration stitched up in the operating room was required. I was in the OR within 15 minutes because I gave birth in the hospital. We all know that it takes a lot longer than that to actually transfer to the hospital, and I sincerely doubt that your average CPM could even diagnose the cause of my pph (my CNM had a couple of nurses helping her, and she was using retractors and a light to get a better look), let alone actually do anything useful. The idiot that I was arguing with said that a good midwife would have given me some of my placenta to chew on, get the baby nursing, and give me pitocin. According to her, this would have fixed me right up. This bullshit about “no hatting, chatting, or patting” is the same kind of drivel that this woman was spouting to me. It is dangerous, because it minimizes just how dangerous pph is, and it give birth junkies the idea that they can actually control them through non-scientific means.

    • Dr Kitty

      Lacerations do not magically close if you chew placenta. D’oh.

    • Captain Obvious

      I wonder if Homebirth midwives even bring right angle retractors or Breisky-Navratil Vaginal Retractors to a Homebirth to look for lacerations. So many Homebirth midwives have never had a cervical laceration, but then again, if you don’t look for it, how would you know. Not all cervical lacerations hemorrhage.

      • attitude devant

        Recently saw in a lady not currently pregnant a terrible cervix, a full fish-mouth shape, with big lacerations at 3 and 9. So I asked about her maternity history, which my history form had listed as two C/S, and it turned out she had two HB attempts with a transfer both times. I asked her about tears and she said that her midwife had tried to manually push the cervix back over the baby’s head. She thought that was a fine thing and not at all risky. Apparently her midwife had not a clue that the cervix was not the problem—the baby’s head not fitting into the pelvis was the problem.

        • Let me take that midwife’s head and try to push it through a hole in plywood board with the diameter 1/2″ smaller than her skull.

          Maybe then she’ll understand that CPD is not something that OBs make up to justify a c-section.

        • moto_librarian

          OMG! That is just dreadful!

        • Dr Kitty

          THAT is the kind of breaking bad news scenario they don’t teach you in medical school.

          I hope she took it ok, because, really, there is no good way to tell someone that their cervix has been turned from a donut shape into a fish mouth because of manual dilation during failed HB.

          • Victoria

            Perhaps a dumb question here but does the damage she have cause pain? Would it mean she is more likely to have uterine prolapse? Are there other organs that would be affected by the uterus being fish mouth shaped? It sounds dreadful without knowing the significance but I am wondering what does make it significant.

          • fiftyfifty1

            Not the whole uterus, just the cervix is “fish mouth”. Imagine a pudgy donut with a small hole in the middle. Now imagine it with a cut in the donut in 2 places, like in the shape of a frown. Looks like a carp mouth.It doesn’t cause pain or prolapse. Most women who have given birth vaginally will have a slight fishmouth look to the cervical os just from the stretching that happened, but the frown shouldn’t be big and extend all the way through the donut ring. That’s a sign that there were cervical lacreations that didn’t get repaired. Depending on how deep the damage is it can make the cervix too weak to hold in a pregnancy as it grows and gets heavy (that’s called incompetent cervix).

          • Victoria

            Oh sorry, yes, cervix fish shaped not uterus! So, not defending what the midwife did at all, the fish shaped cervix would only be a potential problem in the carrying of another pregnancy? While what happened sounds awful she will not have any other complications? I feel like I am missing what makes this so awful (except for the fact that her midwife was obviously an idiot and likely endangered her babies). I have no idea what my cervix looks like and am not sure I would care if someone told me if was fish shaped if it meant no complications (not having more children).

          • fiftyfifty1

            Well all’s well that ends well, I guess. Cervical lacerations can bleed like crazy and sometimes be dangerous. Luckily this woman’s did not. And a badly damaged cervix can be unable to hold a future pregnancy. This is not so much of a problem if this woman doesn’t want more kids…but I would be really mad if that choice were taken away from me by someone else’s incompetence. A doctor that ended a woman’s fertility through incompetence would get his or her ass sued off, that’s for sure.

        • Guestll

          Sweet Jesus.

        • Allie P

          Non medical pro here — my cervix doesn’t go back to normal? I had a regular vaginal childbirth — no lacerations or anything. Quick labor inducted by cervadil.

          I always thought it was the same later on. Fish mouths?

          • Sue

            Allie – an undamaged cervix should go back to normal. AD was talking about a lacerated (torn) cervix that had not been repaired at the time.

        • Renee Martin

          Shes lucky she doesn’t have IC.

        • Annie

          I’ve never actually read anything on the internet that made me recoil and bite my fist in horror. Until now. WTF.

        • Bombshellrisa

          Wonder if the “inventor of Power Birth” midwife Lydi understands this? http://www.powerbirth.com/

  • Alenushka

    I think all the homebirth issues were cause by posting these births on Youtube.

    • Dr Kitty

      Sure, Hawthorne effect, why not?!

  • Squillo

    Their motto: “There’s one born every minute.”

  • momto6

    I am pretty sure photographers aren’t natural, and I am sure the flash bothers the newborn so they should recommend against photographers at birth. Oh wait most of these women offer photography services too, never mind hats are the problem carry on.

    • Elle

      If photography was banned from birth, then half the home births out there would be rendered pointless. 😉

    • LOL-Mama

      Yes all of my babies suffered from Flash poisoning along with internet overexposure.

  • Dr Kitty

    The theory goes like this- hatting interferes with bonding, which interferes with oxytocin production, which prevents effective placental separation and uterine contractions, which leads to PPH.

    So, no hat= more maternal oxytocin= less chance of PPH.
    Sounds almost plausible, but totally isn’t.

    You know what also increases maternal oxytocin and prevents PPH? An IM shot of Oxytocin with delivery of the anterior shoulder- AKA medical management of the third stage. NCB people are definitely AGAINST that though.

    Seriously, why aren’t all the gestational surrogates (who purposefully DON’T cultivate a maternal bond, or hold their babies much after birth) bleeding to death willy nilly, if Whapio’s theory holds water? Surely their rates of PPH should be astronomical!

    • theadequatemother

      Oh yeah…according to M Odent prevention of PPH is best accomplished with a space heater…see facebook link below.

      A SPACE HEATER!

      • Dr Kitty

        So, why are all those women in developing countries with unassisted childbirths and ambient temperatures of 30-40C dying from PPH then?

        Pretty sure they don’t have hats.

        • My mother’s name was Whapio

          It’s a different kind of heat than that provided by a space heater, just as syntocinon is different from oxytocin. Don’t you know nuffink?

          • GuestB

            I’m sitting in my doctors office laughing my ass off at “my mother’s name was Whapio”!!

        • Ethan’s mom

          I live in Africa, we have hats. They put the cutest blue one on my son in the NICU. Maybe, the hat caused my kidney failure…

          • KarenJJ

            I live in Australia and for some reason we don’t seem to do hats. A shame, but then we are all so thoroughly bonded with our kids and don’t have post-birth hemorrhages here so I guess there are some positives.

          • They hatted my first here in Australia, because she was low birthweight and skinny and they were worried about her staying warm enough. Now she is in an academic extension program and my uterus and cervix are just fine. I guess I was just lucky… or MAYBE hatting causes increased intelligence. /sarcasm.

  • Mamatotwo

    Makes absolute sense! What happens to your baby once it’s exited from your body should totally have an effect on what’s still going on in your body. Didn’t you know that if you give a baby a pacifier one of your fallopian tubes collapses??? EDUCATE YOURSELVES!

    • moto_librarian

      Well I guess both of mine must have completely shriveled up by now since my youngest always has a paci, lol!

    • Yammy

      Yes, but does the type of hat matter? If I swap the beanie for a stylish fedora on the little munchkin, will I be swapping hemorrhage for say, (more) hemorrhoids? To the research mobile!

    • GiddyUpGo123

      I swear, though, the woo is so thick in the NCB community that I often have to read sarcastic comments twice before I know whether the poster is serious or not. Haha

      • Mamatotwo

        I know…I almost prefaced this with *this is sarcasm* just so no one thought I was serious!!

    • Victoria

      Well hot damn, I don’t have to get them tied now – both of my kids had pacifiers!

      • KarenJJ

        No wonder my eldest refused the pacifier – she wanted a sibling!

  • For Carla Hartley, birth is a religion. It’s spiritual. It’s intuitive. It’s all about women experiencing positive, transformative births by following her rules, precepts and dogma.

    An illustration may be found at the link:
    http://www.midwiferytoday.com/articles/trustingbirth.asp

    • AmyM

      “I wasn’t scared of birth as far as I knew, but I thought I needed an authority and an expert or something bad might happen.”

      I think that sentence is very telling. It isn’t that without an expert something bad might happen. It’s that an expert may be able to prevent something bad, or if something bad does happen, an expert can handle it so hopefully everyone ends up alive and with all their brain cells. How can these people not get this? It explains their bizarre notion that hospitals do interventions all willy-nilly which then cause complications. These people think totally backwards. How someone can go through life, into grandmother-hood and not see how ridiculous some of this stuff is just blows my mind.

    • GuestB

      ” I am positive that unhindered, unmanaged birth is extremely safe—as safe as breathing.”
      Oh my.

      • GuestB

        Oh wait! She’s POSITIVE it’s as safe as breathing. Well then it must be. My bad!

      • ersmom

        She could be breathing carbon monoxide…

      • anonomom_LLLL_IBCLC

        Wow, I guess I can throw away my asthma inhalers then!

      • Eddie

        With a number of these people, you just have an absolute rejection of science and the scientific method. Anecdotal evidence becomes primary, and they get to reject any data they don’t like. There is nearly a belief in magic and “special knowing.” There is really no hope of ever reaching many of these folks.

        It’s still worth countering, of course, so that others are not fooled.

      • Sometimes I think they have to keep writing this nonsense because deep down they know it is a lie.

    • *Headdesk*

    • Anthropologist Underground

      Wait. Did I get that link right? This is a birth story where the dad is running an air compressor next to the laboring woman? An air compressor to air up the inflatable birthing immersion toilet? An air compressor?! I can barely stand that sound long enough to top off a bike tire. The soothing, spiritual sounds of an air compressor. The all-natural peace of an air compressor. Running next to the laboring woman as baby descends into the birth canal. Do they think the baby can’t hear this racket too? At least they were spared the horror of the hospital. Where no one runs an air compressor right next to a laboring woman.

      • mollyb

        They were (apparently) doing a great deal of construction on the floor above the maternity ward when my daughter was born. My husband said the walls were shaking and the nurses felt so bad they gave us a bunch of restaurant gift cards. Honest to God, after a three day induction I had NO idea. I didn’t believe them when they told me. So . . . maybe the air compressor didn’t bother her?

    • Eddie

      Deliberate hands-in-the-ears ignorance. “Life is risk” thinking, meaning that since everything is risk and since that risk cannot be brought to zero, apparently the differences in risk do not matter since they are all greater than zero. What a nice way to rationalize, “I get to do what I want.”

      • Guestll

        You have a really great way of crystallizing things, Eddie. Glad you’re here, for what it’s worth.

        • Eddie

          Thanks!

    • Sue

      No hatting but chlorophyll and arnica?

    • ratiomom

      “After Jessie was born I had the incredible desire to put her back in and do it again.”

      If anyone needs more proof that these women value the process of birthing over their baby’s outcome, here it is. The baby is just a prop, which she would apparently like to re-use for a second round of orgasmic birth-goddessing.

      • auntbea

        I wanted to put my baby back in, but that is because she was a screamer and I didn’t know how else to make her stop.

  • MaineJen

    This is….not satire? >:o

  • ccccat

    The no-hatting I’ve heard about before, but what could possibly be wrong with chatting and patting? You shouldn’t talk to your baby? Or pat your baby? My baby had some amazingly loud burps. I’m pretty sure no patting would have results in an exploding baby 🙂

    • Lost in Suburbia

      Reading a bit more about the thinking behind the not hatting chatting patting – no chatting is not that the parents shouldn’t talk – it that other people shouldn’t be loud around the newborn, because the baby is listening for the parents voices, which are the voices baby has consistently heard. Parents should talk to the baby. No patting is, again, not other people touching newborn because it somehow interferes with connection with the mother? I dunno. It’s all about bonding I guess, but I think ultimately while those ideas could be a nice philosophy about the experience (and have been around for a long time, I think, it doesn’t make a significant difference in how baby grows up, because that mostly has to do with… parenting! Go figure!

      • Haelmoon

        This no chatting and patting policy is very interesting because many of these pro-natural birth, pro-traditional birth techniques imagine a romanticized version of birth, particularly the Aboriginal or African experience. However, all these women need to do is come to the birth of a native baby on the west coast and they will get a huge upset to their perceived understanding of “natural birth”.

        I care for large number of Aboriginal women, and their birthing experience is nothing like the no-hatting, patting or chatting philosophy. During labour, it is not uncommon to have 10-20 family members in the room. When the baby is born, it is passed from family member to family member and only back to the mother for feeds. These so-call primitive tribes (not my impression, just the natural birth view of their birth practices) love modern conveniences, have no objection to interventions when in the best interest of their baby and like the hats we give their babies. Bonding in these cultures is not just between mom and babe, but between the baby and the community. There is no doubt that the baby will bond with mom, because she is the primary feeder of the baby (fairly high rate of breastfeeding and good support for the moms too). It is important that the baby be introduced to the family and community.

        I really get upset when parts of other cultures are appropriated and romanticized just for the hell of it. These women have a beautiful culture, but they have a lot of struggles too. It is not a complement to admire just part of what makes them a people.

        Sorry for the rant, it is just something that really sticks me. The women I have worked with in different countries are literally dying to have our hospital birth experience, why our babies in North America dying to have theirs??

        • ccccat

          Thanks, that was my impression from mostly National Geographic, I guess.

        • Eddie

          I’d give your post more than one upvote if I could.

        • Dr Kitty

          Community parenting is practised by a lots of societies.
          I did an elective in the Australian outback and had to remember to check who the adult accompanying the child was. A lot of the time it was an”auntie” or “uncle” rather than a parent. There are lots of ways to raise productive members of society, often shaped by what “productive” means to that particular society.

          I think deciding to do something because you’ve heard another culture does it is both offensive and wrong headed. Just because it works for them doesn’t mean it will work for you, if taken out of its cultural context.

          If you have to walk 3 miles each way on dirt tracks twice a day to get water babywearing might be your only safe and workable option. If you can drive your SUV to the supermarket, or stroll on flat pavements to Starbucks, it might be simply one of many baby transport options to consider.

          • Renee Martin

            I dont think wanting to do a practice that’s out of your culture is necessarily bad. There are lots of cultrues, and there are many thing to learn from them. Romantisizing these things as perfect (“noble savage”) is silly, but trying them can’t hurt, in most cases. I know I would love community parenting. I wish I had a big enough family and socials group to do it.

      • ccccat

        I can’t even imagine being that chained to my baby. How insecure are these women?

  • This is pure idiocy!

    • ..now you’ve done it. My kid has been on a Willy Wonka binge recently and now I have “Pure Imagination” running through my head.

  • Guestll
    • Wow, hatting makes your placenta stay attached. The babies head won’t unmould.

      • AmyM

        Oh!! That’s why the placenta just stayed in, with the cords dangling out, for days after my babies were born, because of the hats! Oh wait, that didn’t happen. The placenta arrived a few minutes after my babies had been born but BEFORE they had hats on…..if they’d put the hats on minutes sooner, I’d probably be dead of infection and/or hemorrhage.

        Plus, they used a vacuum on Baby A, who had been turned kind of sideways, so he had the big ol’ moulding conehead on the side of his head. Talk about a freak-show…lucky we had those hats, because we might have abandoned that poor kid.

        I am astounded at the depth of thought these crazies are giving to a farking hat. It’s a little piece of cloth. Put it on, don’t put it on…who CARES!!!

        My babies were also swaddled very quickly after birth—those meanie hospital staff said they needed to be kept warm! My 36wkers born in January in New England were certainly capable of being kept naked all day every day and it was an outrage that they tried to interfere with bonding by putting a barrier of blankets and diapers between my babies and me. It’s a good thing I took all of that off, so we could get some good old skin to skin, otherwise I’d have warped unattached children who are sociopathic arsonists. I must have got the swaddling off in time, since they seem like normal 4yr olds. Oh wait, that didn’t happen either! WTF, I will never get over the depth of stupidity these people continue to exhibit.

        • anonomom_LLLL_IBCLC

          This reminds me, I have heard that babies with cleft lips are often shown to their parents for the first time wrapped up in a blanket with the cleft area covered, so the first image the parents get is a normal healthy looking baby without the scary gaping hole being visible yet.

    • Guestll

      Church hat-knitting groups: Nice ladies who volunteer their time to make adorable handmade clothing for newborns, or MERCILESS ABUSIVE ILLUMINATI? Discuss.

      • I wanna be Whapio!

        Merciless abusive EEBIL illuminatAE. Female, plural. Sheesh.

    • Eddie

      Oh, that page is much, much better than normal, as they spell it “mamma” rather than “mama.” Oh wait, that page isn’t pseudo-scientific satire. But this post is satire.

      • ChiTown_MotorCity

        I can’t help but hear “mawmaw” whenever I read “mama”.

      • The Last of the Whapios

        When it’s spelt “mamma”, you have to imagine it’s pronounced in a posh English accent, with the stress on the second syllable. As in mamma and papa.

  • sharah

    “Effect” is not a verb. And I can’t come up with any other commentary than that, because this is too ridiculous.

    • auntbea

      Well, “effect” can be used as a verb (e.g. “to effect change”), but not when used as it is above.

      • KarenJJ

        No Hatting, Chatting, Patting or Grammer.

        • I’m Whapio, and so is my wife

          No splatting either. And if you want to take your terrier ratting, do it somewhere else. Not in the birthing suite. ‘Bratting’ is what common people do when giving birth to unattractive, ill-mannered offspring.

          • Sue

            Come on now – stop catting!

          • I’ll Tell Whapio You Said That

            You mind your own biznis and practice your tatting (crocheting strictly forbidden).

      • LukesCook

        It can be, but I wish people wouldn’t.

    • Eddie

      Thank you for this. Otherwise I would have had to say something.

    • CanDoc

      Effect as a verb as written in this context declares that Hatting in fact does “effect” (ie *cause*) “baby’s health”, or keep the baby healthy… but apparently at the expensive of hemorrhage for mom? Oh Karma, you are a witch. I doubt this was Whapio’s intended message.

  • KarenJJ

    WTF. How is that not satire? Is it run by someone called Whapio? Someone is completely pulling our leg. I’m tempted to spring for the $40. I’ve paid more for concert tickets and this amusing passtime apparently lasts a full 4 weeks.

    • theadequatemother

      sadly, there is a “waiting list” which I would bet is not so much of a waiting list (with lots of demand, why the introductory rate of $40?) as it is a “vetting” list. I bet you won’t be admitted without homebirth midwifery or woo-doula cred.

      If you want to attend I suggest manufacturing a website and setting yourself up as a spiritual birth advisor.

      • anonomom_LLLL_IBCLC

        >If you want to attend I suggest manufacturing a website and setting yourself up as a spiritual birth advisor.

        I’d do it, but it would be hard not to smirk and crack up constantly while trying to keep a straight face.

    • Sue

      Get in fast while the Aussie dollar is high, Karen.

  • PrecipMom

    Wait a minute… this is a real class. Really? Why is this not satire? WHY???

    • Certified Hamster Midwife

      I explained to a friend with a medical background that there are people who actually believe leaving off hats and huffing baby heads prevents postpartum hemorrhage and leads to deeper love. She slowly backed away.

      • Victoria

        You won’t be delivering her next hamsters.

        • PrecipMom

          Catching, Victoria! CATCHING. Pizza drivers deliver, but midwives catch.

          • Certified Hamster Midwife

            Hamster pups are babies AND snacks, so really it could go either way.

  • Cellist

    “There is one simple, yet profound, birthtruth: Birth is Safe; Interference is Risky!”
    I am lucky enough to have a photograph of my great-great-grandmother from 1902. It was taken the year before the interference free birth of her seventh child.
    Both she and the baby died. Safe, huh?

    • theadequatemother

      i came across a lady on a board recently whose midwife told her that true emergencies (like cord accidents and hemorrhages) are caused by hospital interventions so that they NEVER happen at homebirth and the only reasons to transfer from a homebirth develop slowly with LOTS of warning.

      • AmyM

        Of course…you know the ebil Pitocin will automatically cause a Csection, but even if it doesn’t (how does that work?), it WILL cause you to bleed to death after baby is out. I think their logic is that at home, the mother wouldn’t get Pit. But, they never take it one step further, and wonder if that mother didn’t get Pit, maybe she wouldn’t hemorrhage, but maybe also, her contractions aren’t effective enough and baby would die in utero, from failing to tolerate the 4 day labor. With broken membranes and an infection. But at least, she didn’t get Pit and therefore no Csection and no hemorrhage!!

        • The Computer Ate My Nym

          her contractions aren’t effective enough and baby would die in utero,
          from failing to tolerate the 4 day labor. With broken membranes and an
          infection.

          Sure, she’d die of infection and exhaustion, probably never able to actually deliver the baby, but at least her uterus would be intact. Having had a c-section for ineffective labor and fever suggesting infection, I can guess what that death would be like and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

        • Wow, I guess I bled to death several times and didn’t realize it.

      • JenniferG

        I was told that. After my baby died of a cord accident. You really have to love the sensitivity.

        • I’m so sorry you lost your baby. 🙁 My breech baby had some cord compression… I remember the fear and panic…

        • theadequatemother

          I’m really sorry, both that interventions weren’t used in a timely manner in your case, and that the hurt was compounded by the flagrantly ignorant.

      • Charlotte

        My friend had a near-fatal cord prolapse at home. Her water broke suddenly at 29 weeks and the cord slipped out with it. The only reason her baby is alive today is because she immediately called 911 and lived within walking distance of a hospital, so she was in the OR withinminutes of the call.

        • theadequatemother

          Cord accidents are one of those things that are pretty random and unpredictable. Prolapse, compression, knots…Prolapse can be a consequence of an ARM with a poorly applied presenting part, but most practitioners wouldn’t perform one under those conditions.

          Do the NCBers really think that the application of pitocin causes the baby to do summersaults in the womb so that the cord becomes wrapped and kinked or knotted? I’m boggled.

          FWIW, the worst PPH’s I’ve seen were from prolonged labours (like 30 hours and 6 hours (!!!!) of pushing) and delayed midwifery OB consultation requests or bad chorio..again from not intervening appropriately.

      • Aussiedoc

        Janet fraser’s baby died of a cord accident.

    • Certified Hamster Midwife

      She probably put a hat on the baby.

      (I snark because I’m angry. That’s very sad about your ancestor.)