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Natural childbirth is the designer handbag of birth

I just read a great piece on Ravishly, Natural Childbirth Is Great But Let’s Stop Pretending It’s A Matter Of Choice. I agree with a lot that the author has to say: Labor is excruciating. …There was no warning, no gentle increase of pressure, just sudden stabbing pain, followed by incredible pain, followed by a […]

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Natural childbirth and lactivism reflect our deepest fears and prejudices

You must read Heather Kirn Lanier’s extraordinarily beautiful, haunting essay about giving birth to a child with an unexpected disability, SuperBabies Don’t Cry. Although it is long, I encourage you to read it in full. The writing is lyrical, the emotions are raw and the love of a mother for her child infuses nearly every […]

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New Cochrane Review shows that cutting tongue-ties does not improve breastfeeding

I’ve written before that we’re in the midst of a curious epidemic of “broken” baby tongues. Lactivists insist that women are mammals and mammals are “designed” for breastfeeding. They insist that breastmilk is the perfect food. They appear to believe that there is no such thing as not enough breastmilk. Simply put, no woman’s breasts […]

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Lactivist Prof. Amy Brown takes a page out of the anti-choice playbook

When it comes to infant formula, I’m prochoice. Sure, I breastfed my own four children; I had relatively few problems, I enjoyed it and I had four fat, happy babies. I chose to use my breasts for breastfeeding, but that tells me nothing about what other women ought to do with their breasts. Similarly, I […]

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Are homebirth advocates as stupid as Melissa Cheyney and MANA imagine?

Melissa Cheyney is the Donald Trump of homebirth midwifery. Both think they can trick their followers and get away with it. Trump has nothing on Cheyney and the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) when it comes to treating their followers with contempt. They appear to think that their followers are both stupid and gullible. […]

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Insisting that “breast is best” is like insisting that “heterosexual is best”

I’ve written many times that I consider lactivism in general and the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative to be unscientific, harmful and often unethical. Why? Because insisting that “breast is best” is no different than insisting that “heterosexual is best.” Both reflect prejudice, not science. Although lactivists like to invoke “science” to support their claim that […]

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Science journalist Tara Haelle throws a tantrum

After more than a decade blogging about natural childbirth, breastfeeding and anti-vaccine advocacy, I’ve become pretty inured to the vitriol directed my way. I understand threatening the livelihoods of the birth industry and the breastfeeding industry isn’t going to win friends, and I appreciate that cognitive dissonance is hard for women who have staked their […]

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Author of “Birth Muthas” responds to Milli Hill’s attempt to censor her

This is a guest post from Cath Janes, the author of Birth Muthas, published in Standard Issue Magazine in response to Milli Hill’s gaslighting extravaganza The myth of the painful birth – and why it’s not nearly so bad as women believe. Janes was shocked when Hill demanded that Standard Issue Magazine offer her the […]

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Melissa Cheyney and the Midwives Alliance of North America finally acknowledge their hideous death rates

I told you so! I’ve been writing about homebirth for more than a decade. For most of that time, the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) and Melissa Cheyney, the Director of Research for MANA have insisted that their data show that homebirth is safe. In the meantime, the publicly available data on CDC Wonder […]

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The tribal epistemology of lactivism and natural childbirth advocates

I’ve written before about the tribalism of natural parenting advocates. According to sociologist Jan Macvarish: The idea of ‘parental tribalism’ … [is] descriptive of a tendency among individuals to form their identities through the way they parent, or perhaps more precisely, through differentiating themselves from the way some parents parent and identifying with others … […]

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