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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read This Book BEFORE You Read ANY OTHER on PREGNANCY & CHILDBIRTH!
Like many first-time expectant moms, I devoured MULTIPLE books on pregnancy and birth before I started Ina May's Guide to Childbirth, but I WISH I HAD READ THIS ONE ***FIRST!!!*** I started with the ubiquitous book that tells you "what to expect", but what I wanted was a book that would TEACH me, not TELL me how I could go about my pregnancy and birth in a way that was...
Published on July 4 2006 by catfish friend

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars eye-opening
As a physician, I came to this book with a cynical approach. As a pregnant woman with my first child, I came ignorant. Though I was disappointed with the lack of practical skills advice, it was definitely an eye-opener and truly helped shape and modify my approach to Obstetrics and I am extremely thankful. Worth the read personally to help reshape my mindset...which I...
Published 16 months ago by TT


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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read This Book BEFORE You Read ANY OTHER on PREGNANCY & CHILDBIRTH!, July 4 2006
This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
Like many first-time expectant moms, I devoured MULTIPLE books on pregnancy and birth before I started Ina May's Guide to Childbirth, but I WISH I HAD READ THIS ONE ***FIRST!!!*** I started with the ubiquitous book that tells you "what to expect", but what I wanted was a book that would TEACH me, not TELL me how I could go about my pregnancy and birth in a way that was educated, informed, self-directed and naturally beautiful! Out of the wealthiest industrialized nations that has one of the worst perinatal mortality rates, Ina May of the US rises like a phoenix, a beacon of hope and light to share with women who want to affirm their bodies' innate ancient wisdom how to give birth powerfully. Filled with first-hand accounts of births, the wealth of her own experience as a midwife (her group was involved in catching some 3000 births with only a 1.4% c-section rate!) and research and citations from current medical journals and reviews, this book is a MUST-READ if you want to take charge of your body, your baby's birth and ask the right questions of your birth care provider! I started my pregnancy convinced that I would only birth in a hospital, but as I began to educate myself, I found that as a low-risk pregnancy, a home birth was truly what I wanted and that it would be the safest place for me to birth my baby. I believe each woman should be able to choose what she wants, and if you want an epidural in a hospital, more power to you, but do yourself and your baby a favor and educate yourself -- learn what an epidural is, what potential complications can occur, how medical technology as intervention in an age-old natural birth process can lead to more interventions that may not be what you bargained for...and also learn how beautiful birth can be, how there is no need for fear of it! Ina May's Guide to Childbirth teaches you what the hospitals and doctors won't take the time to tell you unless you are prepared to ask AND she also teaches you how to view birth as a natural, beautiful, joyful rite with techniques and information to aid birthing that doctors and hospitals may not know and/or advocate. At first, I was afraid of the impending birth of my child. Books like this one helped to inform me and to shed my fears. I have found myself quoting Ina May to others as I find gems in there that even other birth professionals don't know. Ina May has done her homework, has the experience and puts it in a book for all of us to benefit. DO NOT READ ANY OTHER BOOK ON CHILDBIRTH until you've read THIS ONE!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential For The Mom-to-Be Who Wants a Natural Birth, Jan. 23 2005
This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
This book is one of the best that I have read. The first half of the book is filled with empowering birth stories, and the last half with some excellent advice and information about the childbirth process.
This book tells you everything you need to know to maximize your chances of having a natural childbirth, from the best positions to labor in to what sounds you should make to help labor progress.
It also gives you unbiased information on the risks and benefits of interventions such as epidurals, episiotomies, and c-sections.
Ina May's Guide to Childbirth is a must read for all pregnant women who want to acheive a natural childbirth.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars eye-opening, Dec 1 2012
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This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
As a physician, I came to this book with a cynical approach. As a pregnant woman with my first child, I came ignorant. Though I was disappointed with the lack of practical skills advice, it was definitely an eye-opener and truly helped shape and modify my approach to Obstetrics and I am extremely thankful. Worth the read personally to help reshape my mindset...which I hope I'll be able to take with me in to labor itself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars obstetrician loves it!, July 5 2003
This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
Reading "Ina May's Guide to Childbirth" is like cracking an ancient code etched in my DNA. As Ina May's words unfold, they bring to modern consciousness information that is essential and visionary, articulating and applying the ancient wisdom of childbirth in the language and culture of the present time. In this information age, this book is creating a "new" birth culture. Like "Spiritual Midwifery" in its time, "Ina May's Guide to Childbirth" is a pioneer and an instant classic, a significant and inspiring milestone in the evolution of human culture. This book is intelligent and lovely. I plan to order it by the case and give one to each of my prenatal ladies. (I am an obstetrician/gynecologist.)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful read, Jan. 22 2014
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Lots of good info, but at times it was a bit too technical and other times a bit too wishy-washy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I wish this was the only childbirth / pregnancy book I had read, April 18 2014
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Miss Frizzle - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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Read this one first. And then don't read anything else. And don't listen to any of the negative birth stories that people in our culture seem compelled to tell pregnant women. (By the way, this seems to be a North American phenomenon. Scaring pregnant women is considered poor manners in other cultures.)

Whether you choose a natural birth, home birth, hospital birth, or any other kind of birth, you will be 100% prepared after reading Ina May's book. I honestly wish I hadn't read any other pregnancy books. This is our fifth baby, and I now feel more calm, prepared, and confident about this impending birth than I had last week before reading it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, March 29 2014
By 
mark twain (prince george, bc) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
Read this early in my pregnancy and again before labour. I work in healthcare on the medical side of childbirth, and found the stories absolutely inspiring, calming and empowering. Even if you don't plan on having a midwife or a natural birth, this book is all about having faith in yourself, no matter how you deliver your baby. Love love loved this book! Will pass on and read again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of birth stories, Feb. 6 2014
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This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
This was very calming. I especially enjoyed the birth story section, which was the second half of the book. There were so many different ways that labour progressed that I felt mine was normal, too, even though it didn't follow what most childbirth manuals say. (had painful cramps every 15 minutes for 2 days before the real thing kicked in... hadn't read about THAT anywhere else)

I reread it before my second child was born. A very soothing way to build confidence that yes, my body can do this! (and even when a birth results in c-section or less invasive procedures, the way it is framed in this book still is a triumph of the woman's body)

I definitely appreciated and used the delightfully named 'law of sphincters' to ease both kids into the world with minimal damage to me.

Fair warning, this book has been described (by me, while lending it to all my pregnant friends) as "hippie-dippy", but if all the crunchy lingo doesn't bother you, it is a wonderful read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars MOST AMAZING BOOK ON BIRTHING, Dec 29 2013
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This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
If you are only going to read one book on birthing, read this one.
It is inspiring and motivating and uplifting, while being incredibly informative. This was loaned to me by my doula and I loved it so much i bought one for myself just so i could loan it out to all of my friends and keep it for future pregnancies!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended!, Dec 10 2013
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This review is from: Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material (Paperback)
I highly recommend this book to EVERY new mother to be. The information and stories help to normalize the experience of a healthy pregnancy. They provide a community of other moms (and dads, and midwives) from which to learn about positive experiences while providing information and education on so many critical options that aren't always shared in the medical/hospital/doctor version of maternity care. I referenced this book numerous times after reading it once, and then re-read every story shortly before my due date. I even bought two copies to add to the library at my midwives' clinic. I can't express enough how important I think this book is to read. :)
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Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material
Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Updated With New Material by Ina May Gaskin (Paperback - March 4 2003)
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