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Dr. Amy’s plan for a safe, sane, satisfying birth

Regular readers know that I consider birth plans worse than useless, utterly ineffective at achieving their objectives and nothing more than a recipe for disappointment. I’m offering this alternative plan in an effort to mitigate the guilt, disappointment and self-recrimination engendered by standard birth plans. What follows is NOT a plan to manage birth, but […]

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A mother shares her experience with lactivism, guilt and postpartum depression

Anne, a long time reader, read my post about breastfeeding and bullying and felt compelled to share her story in the hope that it will help others. Every mother wants the best for her baby. The minute they place that little burrito-wrapped bundle in your arms and your eyes meet, that’s it. From that day […]

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The liars at Lamaze: epidural edition

The new Lamaze poster on epidurals raises some existential questions for me and perhaps my readers could help me out. Which of the many ethical violations that Lamaze has committed within the poster are the worst? Is it the lying about facts? Is it the lying about judgment? Or is it the way they treat […]

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Dr. Amy’ 5 reasons NOT to have a homebirth

Wow, it happened again! No sooner did I write a post about confident idiots than one of them stepped forward to offer a perfect example of why, despite their certainty, they cannot be trusted. Thank you Jennifer Margulis for your new post 45 Reasons NOT to Have a Home Birth. It is a delightful amalgamation […]

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Natural childbirth and confident idiots

The trouble with ignorance is that it feels so much like expertise. So says psychology professor Dr. David Dunning. He ought to know. In 1999, in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, my then graduate student Justin Kruger and I published a paper that documented how, in many areas of life, incompetent people do […]

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Announcing …

My new book! For the last few months I’ve been working on a book proposal. I’m happy to say that it garnered a lot of interest among editors and publishing houses, and ultimately went to auction. Guilt Trap: New Motherhood and the Natural Parenting Industry will be published next year by Dey Street Books, an […]

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For my daughter on her birthday

All my life I dreamed of you … and then you came. From the time that I was a small child I had imagined what it would be like to have a daughter. I envisioned a girly girl with a powerful sense of self, and you have wildly exceeded my every expectation. Your personality was […]

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Quackery means never having to say you’re sorry

There are a lot of tips for differentiating peddlers of pseudoscience from real scientists. I’ve written about some of them myself (Six red flags you need to recognize to quack proof yourself). But there’s a simple question you can ask that serves as a highly reliable shortcut. Does the website (or Facebook page) airbrush the […]

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Lethal breasts?

Last month I wrote about a spate of infant deaths in so-called “Baby Friendly” hospitals and asked whether the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative ought to be renamed the Baby Deadly Hospital Initiative. The Initiative virtually mandates keeping babies in bed with exhausted new mothers even when multiple modifiable risk factors for infant suffocation are present, […]

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Aviva Romm, heal thyself!

You can’t make this stuff up. Aviva Romm, MD has thoughtfully taken a break from her 30 day series on “Preventing Unnecessary Cesareans,” to inform us that she is shocked, shocked that some women are being shamed for their C-sections: Day 7: Take Back Birth: Preventing Unnecessary Cesareans Today I am making a departure from […]

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